Sending The Saiga Off


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kcmarine
January 18, 2008, 09:14 PM
Can you send Saigas off to be converted? To who and at what cost? Has anyone here done that? If so, are you satisfied with the results? Post pics if you have them. Thank you. I know I'm probably making some people mad with these threads... but.. I can't make up my mind on what I want to do.

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-C4-
January 18, 2008, 09:20 PM
I had a S12 converted by Tony @ Tromix. Can't tell that it didn't come like that. Awesome job.

22_Shooter
January 18, 2008, 10:20 PM
Pretty much every major company who converts Saigas is backlogged for months. How deep of a conversion do you want? If you're looking for just a PG conversion, I would highly recommend doing it yourself. It would save on money and time, plus you have the "I did that myself" factor. I was on the fence also about doing my x39, but I finally got the balls to do it, and the only thing I regret is not doing it sooner. It honestly isn't hard at all. I did mine with a hand drill, chisel, a file, a screwdriver and an allen wrench (in place of a punch for the pins holding in the old FCG:D). I've said this many times in other threads about converting, but If I can do it, anyone can.

http://i167.photobucket.com/albums/u127/D23NY/conv1.jpg

http://i167.photobucket.com/albums/u127/D23NY/conv2.jpg

Dollar An Hour
January 18, 2008, 10:46 PM
Red Jacket Arms is saying 4 month wait right now, but I hear they're taking longer than that. Tromix isn't even taking on new work.

No idea about AK USA's lead time, but they're expensive!

kcmarine
January 18, 2008, 10:58 PM
Hm... sorry guys. I should have gone more in- depth. Basically, I want my x39 to look as close as possible to a new production Russian Army AK. Cleaning rod, bayonet lug... the works. I know this is asking for a big price... but before, I was looking at buying an AR instead of converting the Saiga. Now that I really think about it, the conversion of the Saiga by sending it off might cost less than the AR, and I already have the ammo for the AK. So now I'm split. I guess a few inconsitancies with a AK-100 series weapon would be okay.

teombe
January 19, 2008, 12:20 AM
Have you considered buying an Arsenal? Yes, I know they're bulgarian, but the current rifles are basically copies of AK-100 series guns.

I've had a chance to toy around with a Saiga 12, and I can say the Izmash is building some really high quality stuff for the prices charged. Red Jacket would be my top choice to convert, as IMO he is the best balance between cost and quality on the market. My Yugo build took 7 months to complete, but the wait was worth it.

kingjoey
January 19, 2008, 01:27 AM
Call Derek at AZEX (azexarms.com) and see what his backlog is running right now. He does top-notch AK work.

22/22mag
January 19, 2008, 02:48 AM
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v245/skinnygun/Saiga.jpgTromix converted a Sagia 7,62x39mm folding stock takes AK 30rd mags 10 parts legal well worth the wait..but now he's backed up till 2009.http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v245/skinnygun/IMG_3020.jpg

bl4ckd0g
January 19, 2008, 08:52 AM
Try Esteban at www.ipscgun.com. He has a good reputation on the saiga-12 boards and can most likely finish your conversion in under 6 weeks (vs. months).

geojap
January 19, 2008, 09:59 AM
Mine was done by Tony at Tromix. I don't want to take away anything from the other great smiths out there, but Tony does incredible work, putting a lot of thought into what is the best solution for the job. His rivet work when moving the trigger guard, finishing work on the receiver pins and folding stock installation is very nice. Tony is not taking any new work in 2008, per his latest update. He is very popular for a reason.

Here is my .223 Saiga converted by Tromix, with extras added by me:
http://codemonkeyx.com/images/saiga2a.jpg

Tony did a great job moving the trigger, installing a high-quality folding stock and installing a feed ramp which guarantees reliable feeding from Bulgarian waffle mags, and refinishing the rifle.

I did some work of my own, installing a Dinzag front hand guard retainer plate, a Bulgarian lower hand guard, an Ultimak gas tube that has a picatinny rail, an Aimpoint CompC3 (2 MOA dot), an Ace Galil pistol grip, and a Blue Force Gear - Vickers Combat Applications sling. I also smoothed the trigger contacts with a dremel polishing bit.

This is about my favorite rifle now. Trigger pull is excellent, it shoots ~2 MOA with Russian steel-cased ammo, and zero failures so far. And it's quite light and ergonomical. I do have quite a bit of money into it (scope and all), but if you put a mount and nice scope on any rifle of this quality, you are going to wind up shelling out some dough. I have about $1375 into the rifle now, total. But that is still much cheaper than many other guns that shoot this well, like PTR-91s, DSA FALs, Colt ARs, etc.

I just bought a second .223 Saiga that I am going to ask Tony to convert at a later point in time when his schedule frees up somewhat.

RJS34
January 19, 2008, 03:37 PM
I also did (http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=113D4D0386C4C639) mine myself. It is a fairly easy task if you just do a little research.

I'm not quite done yet, need to replenish the funds :)

http://i227.photobucket.com/albums/dd286/rjs34/P1010436.jpg

RP88
January 19, 2008, 03:45 PM
are there any inherent risks to the gun when doing that?

MIL-DOT
January 19, 2008, 04:27 PM
I had originally planned to the the conversion myself, but the more i read, the bigger pain in the ass it looked to be. I went to a local gunsmith,just to have him install the G2 FCG,then he offered a deal on parkerizing,a day or so later,i asked him to install the feed-ramp. He had the rifle back in my hands in 3 or 4 days total, and i'm thrilled with his work. The rifle looks and shoots like a million bucks !! IIRC it cost me $125, and i suplied the parts. From what i hear locally , this guy is quite competent and well thought of,and he said the conversion was a considerably bigger headache than it's commonly advertised as being,and he'd likely charge more money to do one again.
I'd recommend the same route. Buy the parts yourself, and find a local smith familiar with AK's.

JWarren
January 19, 2008, 04:30 PM
are there any inherent risks to the gun when doing that?


Not if properly done. Remember, the Saigas have been essentially retro-fitted TO the sporter configuration. The receiver was build for the traditional configuration-- right down to many having the FCG hole already in the receiver and simply covered by the plate.

Installing a feed ramp is probably the scariest part for most people.


-- John

rbernie
January 19, 2008, 04:47 PM
What is the consensus on the best bits to use to cover the holes in the receiver for the sporter-version FCG pins?

nalioth
January 19, 2008, 05:21 PM
What is the consensus on the best bits to use to cover the holes in the receiver for the sporter-version FCG pins? Why would you need to cover them? I left mine open.

Some folks use the black nylon hole covers from your local home improvement store to good effect.

LeibstandarteAdH
January 19, 2008, 05:28 PM
Red Jacket Arms is saying 4 month wait right now, but I hear they're taking longer than that. Tromix isn't even taking on new work.

No idea about AK USA's lead time, but they're expensive!

AK-USA says seven months turn-around.


Also, what kind of gas block and handguard retention system is under those nasty sporter front ends? Most people seem not to take them down any closer to AK-100's than that theese days, so it must not be easy/good/pretty.

AK103K
January 19, 2008, 05:32 PM
Mines an early Kreb's AK103K. Its been flawless since day one. If I was in the market, I wouldnt hesitate to get another.

http://im1.shutterfly.com/procserv/47b7d700b3127ccebc12073f192a00000036100CYuWbdo5bsU

The "K" is the chopped version with a 14" barrel and welded on brake, they do a bunch of different variations these days that werent available when I got mine.

If I order another, it will be the full blown AK103 with Russian side folder.

http://www.krebscustom.com/

nalioth
January 19, 2008, 06:06 PM
Also, what kind of gas block and handguard retention system is under those nasty sporter front ends? Most people seem not to take them down any closer to AK-100's than that theese days, so it must not be easy/good/pretty. There is no handguard retention system at all. The factory Saiga handguard screws to the receiver at the rear, and are friction fit around the gas block.

To retrofit, you'll need to
...a) buy a bolt-on LHG retainer from dinzag or

...b) knock out the pins holding the FSB and GB and remove them, buy a standard AK LHG, divot the barrel where the LHG retainer pin rotates, press the GB and FSB back on and call it done.

Dinzags option costs $80. I'd rather pay it, than pay to have all that other done, personally.

22_Shooter
January 19, 2008, 08:02 PM
From what i hear locally , this guy is quite competent and well thought of,and he said the conversion was a considerably bigger headache than it's commonly advertised as being,and he'd likely charge more money to do one again.

In what way was it a headache, did he say? I'm curious, because him being a gunsmith (a good one from you stated), I don't see where he would get a headache in doing a conversion?

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