Give your WASR a facelift....


PDA






Rubber_Duck
October 9, 2008, 05:57 AM
....from ugly-duckling to Russian beauty....

Those of you with a WASR-10 already know of the crappy picnic-table wood that is OEM on these otherwise good utility rifles. Most people refinish the wood or go polymer.

I wanted the classic AKM look (and palm swells), so after many weeks of searching, with Ironwood Designs as the only viable option, I came across this: http://www.mattsksupplies.com/reproduction-russian-laminated-stock-sets-p-653.html?sksCsid=ba8d06e2eb8764a1fa9f58fcbaa8c97f .

Well, the set I ordered arrived yesterday, and I must say it looks fantastic! I highly recomment this set.

The wood was so nicely finished that I almost felt bad by putting it on a WASR. Not shown in the pic on the website is a used brown bakelite pistol grip to complete the package.

Installation was uber-easy, simply swap with existing furniture, although I did a little bit of filing to get the handguard retainer to fit. I also drilled one hole for the wooden stock, as it only came with the rear trunion hole drilled.

The new wood made a HUGE difference! The lower-handguard palm swell feels much nicer than the OEM handguards, which in my opinion have the ergonomics of a two-by-four. Overall, the best $92 you can spend for a wooden AK furniture! And unlike Ironwood Designs, no waiting or do-it-yourself finishing.

The blurry pictures don't do her justice, but here she is....

Before:

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=86093&stc=1&d=1223542475



After:

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=86092&stc=1&d=1223542199



Looking forward to comments and/or questions.

Thanks. :)

If you enjoyed reading about "Give your WASR a facelift...." here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
dafitch
October 9, 2008, 07:13 AM
Looks 100 times better. I like it!

Makes me miss my WASR. Do I need to get another?

Where'd you get the plum grip?

Z-Michigan
October 9, 2008, 10:41 AM
Looks nice.

But I'll mention that I have Ironwood stocks on one rifle and they are really nicely made. Finishing is DIY, but is really easy - sand them and then apply WATCO oil with an old sock. Allow to dry. It's "work" but really easy and not remotely painful.

Shear_stress
October 9, 2008, 10:44 AM
Please note that those repo Russian stocks are imported, not U.S. made.

Rubber_Duck
October 9, 2008, 12:13 PM
dafitch,
The plum grip was INCLUDED witht he stock set. And yes, you need to go get yourself another WASR, pronto! ;)

Z-Michigan,
I was going to end up ordering the Ironwood stock set, however I came across this set which was already finished and is EXACTLY what I was looking for. It came out to be cheaper too (not by much though).

Shear stress,
The furniture is indeed imported, so they do not count as compliance parts.

I can't believe I overlooked this (I was too excited about the new wood!) but is there anything I need to change to keep my rifle legal?

Thanks.

nalioth
October 9, 2008, 12:19 PM
I can't believe I overlooked this (I was too excited about the new wood!) but is there anything I need to change to keep my rifle legal? You need to find a US made plum pistol grip, or check that the one you got is US made.

Shear_stress
October 9, 2008, 12:22 PM
Let me see, according to the ATF, stamped AKs have "16" imported parts. You need to get it down to ten. The WASRs already have domestic fire control parts (3 U.S. parts) and U.S. made gas-piston (1) part. If you have a U.S. made muzzle break, that means that your gun has "11" imported parts. Swap that pistol grip for a U.S. made grip and I believe you'll be good.

Rubber_Duck
October 9, 2008, 12:28 PM
Thanks guys, I'll start looking for a brown US made grip. Any idea where to find one online?

I have no way to know but I'm almost that the grip that was included IS NOT USA-made, as it's used and looks like it was pulled off an AK that was dragged across Egypt (chewed up corners and such).

frankcostanza
October 9, 2008, 12:33 PM
http://www.aa-ok.com/sections/8-ak-pistol-grips-hardware

Lots of different options for US made pistol grips here.

Rubber_Duck
October 9, 2008, 01:16 PM
frankcostanza,

Thanks for the link. :)


What about installing a USA-made muzzle brake? I don't know if the one that is already on it is imported or not.

nalioth
October 9, 2008, 01:30 PM
What about installing a USA-made muzzle brake? I don't know if the one that is already on it is imported or not.Standard WASRs ship with the following US parts:

1) trigger
2) hammer
3) disconnecter
4) pistol grip
5) gas piston
6) slant brake

Rubber_Duck
October 9, 2008, 01:34 PM
Thanks nalioth, looks like the muzzle brake will stay then.

JohnnyOrygun
October 9, 2008, 02:06 PM
Your rifle looks better with the new furniture, I like it. Can a newbie when it comes to AK's ask a question? What is the problem with WASR's? I am thinking of getting a semi auto, for fun and just like to have one, But everyone seems to be really down on WASR's why is it? Are they really poorly made, hard to find parts for, or something else? I understand that "You get what you pay for", but I have always been under the impression that the AK, while maybe not the most accurate or finely made as some guns (AR's), are uber-reliable. Anyhow, thanks for sharing the pics and any info.

Thanks
"Little" John

nalioth
October 9, 2008, 02:50 PM
The only thing wrong with a WASR is that it's inexpensive.

"If it's cheap, it's probably cheap ****" seems to be the outlook.

If you buy one and it hasn't been viciously mauled by a drunk monkey (malfunction-inducing mag wobble [not 'oh my magazine rattles' mag wobble]) or misassembled (canted sight or gas block) by a pennies-per-hour-payrolled Romanian, it'll run just as well as any other AK (well, it'll run just as good with the canted parts, too, but you know what I'm getting at).

Parts are interchangeable with any other AK with a couple of exceptions.

The furniture comes unfinished (which a lot of folks equate to a "bad gun"), but you can paint it, wax it, stain it, etc to your desires (or just leave it be).

Shear_stress
October 9, 2008, 03:11 PM
The only thing wrong with a WASR is that it's inexpensive.

"If it's cheap, it's probably cheap ****" seems to be the outlook.

Exactly. People felt the same way about Norincos and SAR-1s until they weren't importing them anymore. So it will be with the WASRs.

Z-Michigan
October 9, 2008, 03:22 PM
Following the thread veer, I wouldn't hesitate to buy a WASR.

I would refinish the wood when I get it, but that requires only 1-2 hours of very leisurely time, $3 worth of fine sandpaper, a $5 can of WATCO oil, and some old socks. I am in the process of refinishing some stocks that came just barely finished, and the results of modest effort look wonderful.

JohnnyOrygun
October 9, 2008, 03:31 PM
Thanks everyone, sorry to take the thread off subject, Just curious about WASR's and who better to ask then someone who owns one or more. As to the wood being unfinished, I like that idea, I like to finish wood and such so that would be a plus to me.

Anywooo thanks for the insights.
Little John

Shade00
October 9, 2008, 04:52 PM
I think the key with WASRs is getting your hands on them to check for canted front sights and magazine wobble. If you can find one without those issues, they're generally good rifles.

Wolfman_556
October 9, 2008, 05:57 PM
Some of the WASR's have a problem with trigger slap too.

When I bought my WASR-3 (5.56mm), I checked it out thoroughly for canted sights, etc.

BUT when I actually fired it, it had more jam sessions than the Grateful Dead.

The problem was the magazine. It came with an unmodified AK74 mag.

OK, so I bought ten wieger mags.

And still it malfunctioned.



:cuss:


Turns out, the circus monkeys who built it machined the magazine catch too low, causing the rear of the mag to sit too low, and as a result, the bolt would often slide halfway up the round before pinching it in the middle of the casing and jamming the round cockeyed at the opening of the chamber.


The fix was simple: I stripped it down to the receiver and had someone weld a few beads on the top of the mag catch to add more steel to it, then I carefully used my trusty dremel to get it where it needed to be.

Four years later now and no more problems ;) except I can't find wieger mags anywhere now.:banghead:

And it surprised me how accurate it is for a $300 AK. It averages 3"-4" groups at 100 yds, not bad for an AK.

nalioth
October 9, 2008, 07:10 PM
Some of the WASR's have a problem with trigger slap too.
<SNIP>
Four years later now and no more problems except I can't find wieger mags anywhere nowYou mean 'HAD'.

As of a couple years ago, Century stopped using their slap-happy FCGs and went to Tapco G2s in all their offerings.

If you do buy a trigger-slappin' WASR today, it's an old one with dust on it.

jws527
October 9, 2008, 07:24 PM
The only thing wrong with a WASR is that it's inexpensive.

"If it's cheap, it's probably cheap ****" seems to be the outlook.

If you buy one and it hasn't been viciously mauled by a drunk monkey (malfunction-inducing mag wobble [not 'oh my magazine rattles' mag wobble]) or misassembled (canted sight or gas block) by a pennies-per-hour-payrolled Romanian, it'll run just as well as any other AK (well, it'll run just as good with the canted parts, too, but you know what I'm getting at).

Parts are interchangeable with any other AK with a couple of exceptions.

The furniture comes unfinished (which a lot of folks equate to a "bad gun"), but you can paint it, wax it, stain it, etc to your desires (or just leave it be).+1

I bought a new WASR last month and I love it. While it's not the prettiest model available, it runs without a hitch (put 220 rounds of Wolf FMJ through it more or less right out of the box without a misfeed, misfire, or failure to eject). By the way - the Tapco G2 is a great trigger. It has a very short, crisp pull. No slap, of course.

If you enjoyed reading about "Give your WASR a facelift...." here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!