January 14, 2013, 11:27 PM
Well i just got into my first AK. I bought a Saiga 7.62x39 rifle made in Russia by Izhmash from my uncle for $300 with 400 rounds of ammo. He had the rifle for awhile and put it in the safe, never fired it. I want to add a nice stock, probably an ACE skeleton butt stock, pistol grip and some sort of fore grip on it. I know i have to move the trigger group forward to install a pistol grip and im wondering how hard this is to do? Also, are these decent rifles overall and was $300 a fair price? Any help would be AWESOME.

Thank you,

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January 14, 2013, 11:53 PM
At this time and environment, I think you did ok if the $300 was JUST for the ammo!

January 15, 2013, 12:15 AM
Really? Im picking up 600 more rounds for $145 tomorrow lol

January 15, 2013, 12:17 AM
I figured the rifle was worth more than $300 but not ammo. I just sold 2 FiveseveN pistol's, one for $2350 NIB and one with mags and ammo for $3300 so i know the crazy prices! Im hoping "furniture" for my Saiga won't be a hassle to get now.

Rob G
January 15, 2013, 12:19 AM
Even before the panic buying a Saiga rifle for $300 would have been considered a good deal. Now I would consider it a great deal.

Also, are these decent rifles overall

It's built around a Kalashnikov action. Basically it doesn't get any more reliabe than that and they accuracy should be enough for most people's purposes. The only downside to them is the Saiga triggers aren't great, but if you're going to convert it to regular AK format you'll end up replacing the trigger anyway so no problems there.

January 15, 2013, 12:26 AM
Yeah i plan on replacing the whole stock, adding a pistol grip, new trigger group and guard, adding some sort of red dot. I have a Trijicon RMR on my FNP-45 and really like it so might go in that direction. Im completely new to AK's so bear with me. Is moving the trigger forward to add a pistol grip difficult? How exactly do i mount an optic? It has the mount on the left side of the receiver but im totally in the dark on how it works.

January 15, 2013, 02:44 AM
It is very simple to move the trigger group. There are several videos on the web detailing the process. Mississippi Arms and Carolina Shooter Supply are good places to get the parts. Don't forget a bullet guide if you plan to run AK mags and I would if I were you. You also need to grind down the mag catch a little for the ak mags. There are different rail options for optics. I went with a UTG quick release side mount for mine. I have not done the front end of mine and don't plan to except for threading the barrel for a flash hider. You can rent the die, pilot and handle from someone over at the Saiga forum. The tools I used were a screw driver, cordless drill, hammer, punch, a cheap dremel type tool and some dental picks (for installing the BHO spring). A good workbench with a vice is handy too. I would get right on it if I were you. If a ban does happen you won't be able to legally convert it. I did say IF.

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January 15, 2013, 06:20 AM
The whole conversion process is very easy, as long as you have a drill. Drill out a few rivets, install new trigger group, plug holes... Drill and tap the front trunion for a bullet guide (whole kit available on CSS)... Install US-made furniture set... and file down mag catch just a little to accept those scary boxes that hold more than 7 rounds!!!!!!

For the front end, you will need a new gas tube, a lower handguard retainer (there are a few bolt-on options, that don't require you to remove the gas block and front sight), and if you so desire, thread the muzzle. Lot of options for that as well. When you're done, you'll likely need a new finish, but otherwise, you'll have a great rifle that you put some work into! Also, I'm jealous of you to have gotten a rifle AND ammo for $300...

January 15, 2013, 06:43 AM
Thanks guys. I think im going to just call CSS and have them set me up with what i need and get to work before this ban that might happen. As long as i have the parts beforehand who knows weather i convert it before or after the ban :). And BTW, my uncle said that he's had that rifle for 8-9 years and no one asked a thing about it and yesterday when i texted him asking if he'd sell it (for $500) he said I'll do $300 then had a buddy call and offer him $800 for it 10 minutes after I asked and he still sold it to me for $300! Pretty nice of him.

January 15, 2013, 06:53 AM
Well, what's $500 between family?

Actually, I think that's a couple beers on your part.

January 15, 2013, 07:00 AM
Moving the trigger group forward is the easy part. Doing a front end conversion is the difficult part. Unless of course, you cop out and use a bolt on handguard retainer. The bullet guide will also be necessary to use regular ak magazines.
I did a video series on mine. Not all videos have been uploaded yet.
It's finished now and shoots like a dream.

January 15, 2013, 07:41 AM
I agree on the beers! I actually don't mind the factory foregrip so im hoping with just changing the buttstock to an ACE skeleton 8.5" buttstock, and adding a pistol grip the only thing ill have to really do is install and move the trigger/trigger guard forward correct? I ordered 2 new 30 round Surefire mags fron gunbroker and from what i know these will work in the Saiga without installing a bullet guide. Im still going to buy a bullet guide to keep in the safe in case i get some AK mags but for now ill run the surefire saiga mags.

January 15, 2013, 07:48 AM
Yeah, you can use the Surefire mags without the BG... the point of the BG is that the Saiga mags have a little ramp at the front to guide the bullet up, where standard AK mags don't. Having a BG around in case is great. Just make sure you get the right one (round or flat trunion). And yeah, all you have to do is move the trigger group, to install a PG and stock.

Now, I'm not sure how 922r plays out when you're not adding a flash hider or higher capacity magazine, but I would still try to keep the stock, grip, and trigger group US-made. I believe that you can't have any scary features without compliance, but again, not sure.

January 15, 2013, 08:25 AM
I would urge to not modify your rifle until all of the gun control bills are resolved by Congress. While some think a outright a "assault weapon" is unlikely there are lots of ways the antis can trim around the edges by outlawing cosmetic features such as the pistol grip. If they are successful and don't include a "grandfather" clause there is going to be a heck of a demand for sporter stocks and trigger parts.

Buck Kramer
January 15, 2013, 09:52 AM
Super easy to convert, get a dremel, a drill, compliance parts, and an hour of your time.

January 15, 2013, 09:54 AM
Inebriated, how can i find out if I need the flat or rounded bullet guide? I did notice the two for sake at CSS but wasn't sure which to buy.

BSA1, you're probably right. I may just order the part's i want and wait until everything settles. I can't imagine there wouldn't be a grandfather law but who knows. There will be ALOT of PO'd people and I really don't think it'd happen.

January 15, 2013, 09:55 AM
Either way it wouldn't be that hard to convert back to how it is now.

January 15, 2013, 10:02 AM
You already know you need the 7.62 bullet guide, so that's settled.

Look directly under the breech of the barrel. Is the metal there rounded, or flat?

Next decide if you just want the BG, or the full kit with the drill bit, screw, and tap.

Follow that and you'll get exactly what you need.

ETA: when installing the guide, make sure the guide is to the Left of the "step" on the breech face located at about the 4:30 position. I go into detail about All of this in my bullet guide video.

January 15, 2013, 10:07 AM
Thanks Tim, ill check as soon as i get back from my 4 month old boys shots... poor little guy.

January 15, 2013, 11:48 AM
Man you got a great deal on that gun (esp with the ammo). Again, thank your uncle and (assuming he drinks beer... or scotch.... or bourbon... etc) buy him one (or 5).

The trigger conversion is pretty easy. It took me a few hours, but there were not really any unforeseen complications. I went with an Arsenal stock and Hogue pistol grip. Tromix modified Tapco trigger (I believe you can buy the Tapco G2 and do this yourself, but it was worth the $10 to me to know it was right) and a generic from CSS trigger guard. I have not done the bullet guide as I generally only use one mag, so Im content with the supplied Saiga-spec mag. I also purchased an Arsenal pilstol grip screw/bushing and some 'plugs' (for lack of a better term) for the old trigger pin holes.

January 15, 2013, 12:23 PM
Either way it wouldn't be that hard to convert back to how it is now.

Only for those that kept the leftover parts. Otherwise can you say "banic" for sporter stock and parts. :-0

January 15, 2013, 12:44 PM
Good rifles. I've had mine for about 2 years. $300 is a great price especially nowadays. I've kept mine stock and I actually prefer it that way.

January 15, 2013, 02:02 PM
Don't over think the bullet guide. I converted my first one before there were kits. I simply cut a metal pipe down to have a bullet guide. I kept cutting it down until it was only about 1/4" thick x 1/2" wide and an inch long. So basically you just need a piece of metal for the tip of the bullet to ride up on into the chamber. I drilled and tapped the first one. The ones I did after I simply used a piece of scape metal for the guide, drilled a hole through, ran a stainless steel bolt through from the top and used a nut on the bottom. If you're anal add a little JB Weld. It has held for cases and cases and cases of ammo.

Other thing to consider is that while it is illegal to convert a non importable rifle without adhering to the 922 r import regulations, it is not illegal to own or use a rifle that has been converted and is not compliant.

January 15, 2013, 02:37 PM
Mac66, so if my rifle doesn't meet regulations its okay to have as long as i bought it that way from a gun show?

Ben, thats almost exactly how im going to start out with my rifle. I want the "nato" butt stock or whatever that holds the little cleaning kit in the butt, a PG and i dont mind the fore end at all. Im also going to buy a quad rail fore end, skeleton butt stock for when i get bored i can switch it over.

January 15, 2013, 04:01 PM
Here's mine. I recently finished it. 177751
I went for the more traditional look. I'm extremely happy with how it turned out.
You have a lot more sentimental value in it when you convert it yourself. I don't see this guy ever escaping my clutches.

January 15, 2013, 04:33 PM
"Mac66, so if my rifle doesn't meet regulations its okay to have as long as i bought it that way from a gun show?"

According to the ATF,...

"922 (r) applies to the act of assembly per se not the mere possession of the assembled firearm"

So yeah. you can own it, you just can't make it that way though the burden is on the Govt' to prove who actually assembled it.

The intent of 922r law was to prevent people from importing non-importable firearms, it doesn't ban their possession.

January 15, 2013, 08:33 PM
I just took the plunge and ordered all of the parts I need to convert my Saiga's trigger back to it's intended position (I've got a few surefire mags, so I'll wait on the bullet guide). I figured I better do it now just in case the worst happens with our brilliant leaders in D.C.; here's hoping it's as easy as everyone says it is.

It'll give me something to do while the ammo is hard to find and the weather's cold until Spring time gets here.

Anyone use the ATI Strikeforce folding stock on their Saiga? That's what I went with as I do not like the short length of a traditional AK stock (it's a bit too small for me).

$300 is a great deal and with the ammo included it's even better, I paid $400 out the door for mine about a year ago and thought I had done well.

January 15, 2013, 08:42 PM
lso, are these decent rifles overall and was $300 a fair price? Any help would be AWESOME.

In this market it is a steal. It was a good price prior to all the craziness. I'll post more about saigas and working on them later when I have some more time.

January 16, 2013, 12:35 AM
Saigas are awesome. I've done 4 conversions now, all on 5.45s but the process is identical, and it's not hard at all. Really there's nothing to screw up. The most technical part is making sure you drill the hole for the bullet guide screw at least fairly straight but even that's forgiving. Everything else is just common sense. I would suggest having a grinder or something else that can remove material quickly. It makes taking off the bottom rivets much faster than a Dremel or standard drill bit in my experience. Oh yeah, and buy a Hogue grip. I couldn't imagine any AK without one.

The rifles are great when the conversion is complete. My two 5.45s(the other two are my girlfriend's and Father's) shoot easy sub 2 inch groups at 100 yards using 7n6 surplus ammo, and the 20 inch shoots 1 1/4-1 1/2 inch groups. And neither rifle his had even the slightest malfunction after thousand of rounds. No surprise there. Your 7.62 probably won't be quite that accurate but will still easily be minute-of-bad-guy, as the saying goes.

Also, $300 is an amazing price in today's market, considering the current prices of Saigas if one can find any and the current political climate on top of that.

January 16, 2013, 06:28 PM
I know i have to move the trigger group forward to install a pistol grip

Actually, you don't have to move the trigger group at all to have a pistol grip...I have the same rifle as you and I bought a Tapco 6 position adjustable stock with the pistol grip attached. Just had to remove the old stock and put on the new Tapco.

January 16, 2013, 07:11 PM
Yeah i seen them kits. I think they look goofy (no offense). I already ordered 2 different stock sets and a TON of parts. My $300 Saiga has over $500 in new parts...

Russ Jackson
January 16, 2013, 07:20 PM
You could always go with one of these because it will work on yours or the Saiga 12:


January 16, 2013, 08:13 PM
I've gotta admit that thing is pretty cool lookin! If i somehow stumble upon another decently priced Saiga im definitely going to buy one of them. Any idea how much they are?

January 16, 2013, 09:23 PM
In late October I got mine for about $450 (including shipping and transfer) new on Gunbroker. Was one of the cheapest listed. If you can find them now they are $600-$700. The ammo is about $100 worth at normal Walmart prices but worth about $200-$250 right now. I would say you got a great deal.

January 16, 2013, 10:50 PM
They're more than $600-$700 now, my buddy stopped by to check my Saiga out yesterday and decided toscour GB all day and night and the cheapest one he found was $950 so he bought it. Im feeling pretty dang good about my purchase now!

January 17, 2013, 09:49 PM
Yeah i seen them kits. I think they look goofy (no offense).

May look goofy, but I am drawn more to functionality...(none taken).

January 18, 2013, 09:11 AM
They're more than $600-$700 now, my buddy stopped by to check my Saiga out yesterday and decided toscour GB all day and night and the cheapest one he found was $950 so he bought it. Im

That's crazy!

I just bought a new 7.62x39mm Saiga (IZ-132) on January 4th from a local gun store for $478.

January 18, 2013, 10:01 AM
Id like to find another one so i can have a classic looking conversion and a tacticool conversion. Im sure there are a ton more out there to be had at fair (under $500) prices sitting in someone's safe for a half decade like my uncles.

January 18, 2013, 04:49 PM
Got a preconverted Saiga brand new for 610 dollars. I think I did ok. :) Thinking about changing out the stock for a KVAR NATO length one (I'm 6'5'') though. Anything I need to know before trying that?

January 18, 2013, 05:09 PM
Don't forget to check out Dinzags website as well, lots of conversion parts and tutorials.

January 18, 2013, 05:15 PM
I own two stock Siaga's. (223 and 7.62x39) Bought them a few years ago for 200 bucks each. There was a time when they sat on dealers shelves begging to be purchased but no one wanted anything to do with them. I never had any ideal that they would ever end up in the 6 to 800 dollar range. I mean they are nice but stamped sheet metal and rivits. I bet they did not cost 20 dollars to manufacture.

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