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View Full Version : School me on AKs (please)


al g blenny
05-23-2009, 5:13 PM
I am very new to AKs. I want to build one from scratch including bending a flat. I see so many different models referenced here and I have no idea what the differences are. Is there a page somewhere that lists different models and the features of each? If not can someone list them? I want to build a quality gun and I don't know where to start. Thanks.

God Bless The Mauser
05-23-2009, 5:21 PM
If your going to build just one it's probably not worth the cost of buying all the tools. They really are simple when it comes to building them. There's tons of info at www.akfiles.com and www.theakforum.net you might be able to find someone willing to let you borrow their tools to build one. Another option is rewelding a milled AK such as a Yugo, I've build 3 of those so far and it's pretty simple.

Josh3239
05-23-2009, 5:21 PM
Here is a ridiculously long list of all the AKs: http://www.ak-47.us/gear/AK47_Chart.php

Here are some questions that can help you decide what you want,
Pistol or rifle? Short barrel and no stock or buttstock and 16'' barrel
Milled or stamped receiver?
Folding stock or fixed stock? If folding, there is side folding and under folding and wire stock and triangle stocks.
Featureless or mag lock?
7.62x39 or 5.45 or 5.56mm?
Any preferences for country or origin? Bulgarian, Hungarian, and Polish appear to be the highest quality. Romanian and Yugo seem to be the lowest.

al g blenny
05-23-2009, 5:35 PM
If your going to build just one it's probably not worth the cost of buying all the tools. They really are simple when it comes to building them. There's tons of info at www.akfiles.com and www.theakforum.net you might be able to find someone willing to let you borrow their tools to build one. Another option is rewelding a milled AK such as a Yugo, I've build 3 of those so far and it's pretty simple.

Knowing me, I will probably end up building at least two or three and I'm sure a few of my friends will want to build one too. I can see buying the flat bending jig since I think they are usually under $200. What else is needed?

Tweak338
05-23-2009, 5:40 PM
If you buy a kit and get it soon.
You can attend Drickel's Build-A-thon

al g blenny
05-23-2009, 5:41 PM
Here is a ridiculously long list of all the AKs: http://www.ak-47.us/gear/AK47_Chart.php

Here are some questions that can help you decide what you want,
Pistol or rifle? Short barrel and no stock or buttstock and 16'' barrel
Milled or stamped receiver?
Folding stock or fixed stock? If folding, there is side folding and under folding and wire stock and triangle stocks.
Featureless or mag lock?
7.62x39 or 5.45 or 5.56mm?
Any preferences for country or origin? Bulgarian, Hungarian, and Polish appear to be the highest quality. Romanian and Yugo seem to be the lowest.

Thanks for the list. To answer your questions
Rifle for the first one but probably a pistol next.
I was looking at the underfolder stocks but I don't like the side folders. If not under then it will be fixed.
Mag lock
7.62
I don't really know how the country of origin changes the gun? Not that it makes any difference but my wife and all of my in-laws are Hungarian. I would just go with that since it would make sense but they think everything made in Hungary is crap. Is there a German design? What about American? I'm German so my grandfather might think it's neat to see a German build.

Tweak338
05-23-2009, 5:58 PM
Country of origin has to do with the condition of the parts kit, the quality and the look(model).

Example:
Yugoslavian M70's
Most are dark bores. Some clean up good.
Some of the kits have seen a LOT of use.
But they look good, and function fine
Usually have some nice blonde wood.
Often common to get wood that has carvings in it.


German parts kits are kinda rare now.
Hungarians pop up now and then.

al g blenny
05-23-2009, 6:04 PM
If you buy a kit and get it soon.
You can attend Drickel's Build-A-thon
Thanks. I was wanting to attend the Santa Rosa one but I didn't have the time to get prepared. This one look to be better anyway since it's so much closer to home. If I just bend the flat and get it prepped at a build party, how hard is it to put the rest of the rifle together at home? I'm sure I can put the lower parts kit on because I did that for an AR by myself. Is it pretty similar?

al g blenny
05-23-2009, 6:04 PM
Country of origin has to do with the condition of the parts kit, the quality and the look(model).

Example:
Yugoslavian M70's
Most are dark bores. Some clean up good.
Some of the kits have seen a LOT of use.
But they look good, and function fine
Usually have some nice blonde wood.
Often common to get wood that has carvings in it.


German parts kits are kinda rare now.
Hungarians pop up now and then.

So all the kits are used? Can't I buy new parts? Are they just way more money?

al g blenny
05-23-2009, 6:05 PM
Oh and I prefer my rifles to be black.

CSACANNONEER
05-23-2009, 6:11 PM
Bending a flat is the least of your concerns and there is no reason to buy a bending jig unless, you have or are going to buy a press too. You'll also need a spotwelder, with a modified tong, to weld your rails in, a barrel pin jig, a trigger rivet jig, a rivet jig, a long rivet jig, a barrel jig to press your barrel out and the back in, a sandblaster, an air compressor, a parkerizing tank, parkerizing solution, a dremel, a 5mm reamer, a 7mm reamer and some basic hand tools. It's a lot different than putting together an AR.

SJgunguy24
05-23-2009, 6:47 PM
AK's have 0% in common with AR's, execpt of course the bullet that exits the muzzle. You my good man need to do a bit more research.

There is no LPK for an AK. They are basic battle rifles but way more involved when it comes to building a working example, especially from a flat.

Get a parts kit, a NDS receiver that matches your parts kit ,AK builder rivets and hit up a build party.

al g blenny
05-23-2009, 6:48 PM
WOW! That's a lot of tools. Sounds like a lot more work than an AR. Now I REALLY want to build one.

al g blenny
05-23-2009, 6:53 PM
Any recommendations for a flat, parts kit, and rivets? As stated earlier I prefer a rifle not pistol. I prefer black rather than wood but other than that I think ease of assembly would be the most important since I am new to this. I just really want to get my feet wet because I think that's the best way to learn. I PMd a local guy hosting a build party so I think I can do all the assembly there. I just need to know what to buy. Thanks everyone for your help so far.

Josh3239
05-23-2009, 6:59 PM
There are better guides out there but this one gives you the basics: http://www.ak-47.us/build/Home-Build--001.php

Vtec44
05-23-2009, 7:07 PM
Here's another guide http://howtobuildanaktyperifle.com/

hawk1547
05-23-2009, 7:12 PM
Here is another guide and place to get some tools ak-builder.com/ak/index.php

al g blenny
05-23-2009, 8:28 PM
Here's the AK I want to build
http://www.spareammo.com/posters/ak47-tactical.jpg
Yeah I know. Tacticool. I don't care. It looks Bad A** to me.

SJgunguy24
05-23-2009, 8:47 PM
Buy a Saiga and convert the thing, it'll be easier,cheaper and a real Rusian AK.

al g blenny
05-23-2009, 8:51 PM
Buy a Saiga and convert the thing, it'll be easier,cheaper and a real Rusian AK.
I already own some guns but I personally believe the government should stay out of our gun safes. I want to build a non registered gun so that I have something for when the government comes to take away my others.

nicoroshi
05-23-2009, 8:56 PM
Oh and I prefer my rifles to be black.

Me also.
http://img237.imageshack.us/img237/9579/dscn2519.jpg
I have built out two Romy 'G' kits (1986, 1982) both of which had very clean chrome lined bores, and had seen very few rounds (very little wear on the bottom of the bolt, and carrier which like ARs will show wear from riding over the hammer during cycling).
I am currently building two more (with a friend of mine) (1979, 1979). One of which appears to have maybe 50 rounds through it, and the other has absolutely no wear marks.
All of the gas blocks, and front sights were free of cant on all four kits.
Romy kits can make fine rifles.

I bend up my own flats with a home made jig, and my vice,
http://img21.imageshack.us/img21/3937/dscn2480h.jpg
and did screw builds (so no need to modify a bolt cutter for a rivet press).
http://img9.imageshack.us/img9/8092/dscn2495a.jpg
I don't own a press but improvised pressing the barrel out, and back in ( trick is to freeze the barrel so it shrinks some).
http://img411.imageshack.us/img411/9636/dscn2448.jpg

A build party would be the way to go as the press, and jigs can be shared by those there (and make life easier) but even if you can't attend a build party, and don't buy $500 worth of tools it can still produce an accurate rifle.
I was iron sighting oranges offhand standing today in the woods with my Pop at 50-60 yards with the AK at the top of this page (They explode rather nicely, and are not only bio-degradable but smell good also).

Here's what it looked like when I got it:
http://img43.imageshack.us/img43/6643/dscn2779.jpg

thedrickel
05-23-2009, 9:00 PM
I'm speechless.

CSACANNONEER
05-23-2009, 9:04 PM
Woodworkers sure know how to make their own jigs! Awesome stuff but, most people don't/can't do that.

nicoroshi
05-23-2009, 9:11 PM
Woodworkers sure know how to make their own jigs! Awesome stuff but, most people don't/can't do that.

What?
You must be kidding.
You can't buy some 1 1/4 wide by 1/4 thick flat bar at OSH, and drill a few holes in it?
You can't clamp some scrap angle in your bench vice?
Wow.....Now I'm the one who is speechless.

CSACANNONEER
05-23-2009, 9:14 PM
What?
You must be kidding.
You can't buy some 1 1/4 wide by 1/4 thick flat bar at OSH, and drill a few holes in it?
You can't clamp some scrap angle in your bench vice?
Wow.....Now I'm the one who is speechless.

I can but, many people are either afraid to or too lazy to spend the time to make jigs.

nicoroshi
05-23-2009, 9:21 PM
I can but, many people are either afraid to or too lazy to spend the time to make jigs.
I am happy to hear that you have the courage to make it happen.
For those who are afraid:
I suggest trying before they decide it's too tough for them, and giving up.
For those to lazy:
I am sorry I cannot help you. Only you can change that.

It's really a ton of fun, and gives one a sense of pride to fire a rifle they built with their own two hands (especially when it shoots really well!).

Good luck to all in their builds however they decide building is right for them (building their own jigs or buying/borrowing pre-made ones).
The sense of accomplishment, and pride is the same either way. :)

CSACANNONEER
05-23-2009, 9:27 PM
BTW, for my first build, I went the cheap and lazy way. I hosted a build party where a few fellow CGers brought their jigs and experience along to help the rest of us. You'ld be surprised at some people's lack of experience working with tools. Even those people were able to leave with finished rifles though.

SJgunguy24
05-23-2009, 9:36 PM
I actually aquired a 1982 romy G kit today. Tomorrow the de-mil begins. I havn't done an AK yet but it shouldn't be a problem. I need to bring home some square tubing to make the rivet jigs.

al g blenny
05-23-2009, 9:39 PM
I am currently building two more (with a friend of mine) (1979, 1979). One of which appears to have maybe 50 rounds through it, and the other has absolutely no wear marks.
[/IMG]
I should be friends with you. Nice setup. I love the rifle you posted.

nicoroshi
05-23-2009, 9:40 PM
BTW, for my first build, I went the cheap and lazy way. I hosted a build party where a few fellow CGers brought their jigs and experience along to help the rest of us. You'ld be surprised at some people's lack of experience working with tools. Even those people were able to leave with finished rifles though.

I hear ya bro, and that's way cool. The two kits in progress now are mine, and a good friends. He's learning as he's building under my tutoring while borrowing my tools, and jigs (doesn't have the tools or any place to work at his current residence). He's way jazzed about building his own rifle.

IsaacGlass
05-24-2009, 12:06 AM
I already own some guns but I personally believe the government should stay out of our gun safes. I want to build a non registered gun so that I have something for when the government comes to take away my others.

They wont have to find or take your unregistered rifle, they will just take you :D Building an AK is certainly much different than building an AR,
its a great way to test your craftsmen skill. Just build it right, like how Nicoroshi did :thumbsup:

motorhead
05-24-2009, 10:50 AM
yeah, i'm way too lazy. i just bought a low mile used one. it's bent about a gazillion flats, as a few here will attest.
for the OP, get a clean g kit for your first build. still cheaper than anything else. new/virgen kits are EXPENSIVE and require much bbl. work, one step requiring a mill. the g's are low mile, never fired F/A and have chrome bores. the money you save can go toward those strange black raily things you want. go for a 100% NDS rec. if available, unless you want to bend your own. if you do, look for a build party. go for the ak builder flat. more work than tapco but better quality. AVOID the lasercut bend on the dots flats like a case of the crabs.