Saiga .308 16" - Ak reliability and M1A Accuracy at .22LR prices.

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by 1stmarine, Jan 14, 2011.

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  1. kmcintosh78

    kmcintosh78 Member

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    So, what is the total price yo have spent on the project?
    I had the Saiga 308, loved it but was able to sell it to fund my dream rifle, m14.
     
  2. chaddy

    chaddy Member

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    Thanks I need all the help I can get.
     
  3. mcdonl

    mcdonl Member

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  4. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    Ok guys let me give you the ACTUAL figures based on the best prices you can find TODAY.
    I put the prices the best I could. I think it is pretty accurate. You do not have to go with all this but this is what I normally build in all my saigas with a few exceptions...

    saigabudget.gif

    If you do not want to thread the barrel could be a little tricky so you could substract the Thread tool and die but some gunsmiths will do it right for $40 or $50.
    For the brakes I highly recommend Peak Tactical Brake custom Made. I can post the drawing of the one I had made that works flawlessly. http://peaktactical.com/gallery.html Tell him that Eloy sent you and he should do it for $50 or even less.
    Discount what you do not like or doesn't apply to you. The minimum compliance parts is 5 for the carbine to be legal but I always put more just in case. Trigger group counts as 3 and US made mags also count as 3 so with just that you would be ok but I like to put the other parts anyway. Since I build over time I have more parts that one might one originally and overtime I like to have 6 to 10 magazines minimum with each system including a few short ones for the bench.
    The system is super accurate out of the box but the brake helps. When done this is a super accurate easy to maintain system. For me accuracy and reliability are paramount in each system I have. More important than looks or anything else. In the end everything starts and ends with the bullet, hopefully a good one. So everything in the middle should be designed to deliver that bullet accurately and consistently.

    I hope this helps.
    Cheers,
    E.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2011
  5. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    Carter,
    I wasn't joking, I would love to help a fellow citizen and firearms enthusiast but I have to find another one. Personally I do not like to get rid of any of my systems and I would recommend a build to anyone. It is fun but I also understand the limitations based on the special circumstances of everyone (lack of tools, time, etc...)

    Chaddy,
    I will help you out as I am pretty sure any other fellow members will also do the same.
    In the end we all get help through this wonderful forum when we need it.

    Cheers.
    E.
     
  6. chaddy

    chaddy Member

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    I live in n.c. anybody know were I can buy one and get someone to convert it iam not not at all mechinacly inclined.
     
  7. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    Chaddy,
    Read the posts. There are several places. Try Atlanticfirearms.com, centerfiresystems.com or mississipiautoarms.com. They carry saigas and parts.
    Also some other members posted other places so again, check the posts.
    Also call the importer The Russian American Armory Company or check the importers website .... http://raacfirearms.com/distributors.htm

    I am going to order a couple of triggers today and I can start a conversion of a Saiga 12 sooner than I was planning if this helps someone.
    The truth is that you will find already plenty of information online on how to do it. If you know how to drill a hole straight you have the potential to be able to do this.
    I do not want to encourage anyone to get it done if they do not want, have huge doubts or simply do not have time so ask those companies if they
    can convert it for you. Make sure they use the quality compliant US made parts. Tapco, MAko, KVAR, UTG they all make great parts for saigas.

    I hope this helps.
    Cheers,
    E.
     
  8. mcdonl

    mcdonl Member

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    Marine, have you ever done a 223 or other Saiga that needed the barrel threaded. I have no problem with the threading, I am a little concerned though with the removal of the shroud. I have seen people do it (Online) with pipe cutters, but the dremel seems the way to go. I was thinking putting a pipe clamp on as a guide.

    I have the thread alignment tool but I have not picked out a flash suppressor yet so I have not gotten the die.

    Any thoughts?
     
  9. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    I have not done a .223 since we have many other great .223 systems such as the AR (piston driven if you want) and the Keltec SU-16CA or C but I do not discard converting the .223 at some point. But in any case the process is the same. DO NOT USE A DREMEL AND DO NOT USE A PIPE CUTTER. Those could turn into unwanted cuts in the barrel.

    You have 2 options, one harder to do the other one easy.
    A) Remove the sight post by removing the bottom pins. Pins here do not come easy so you might have to drill them out which is ok as you can replace with pins slightly wider in diameter and nobody will notice. Then when the sight post is out you can thread the barrel using the die and a thread alignment tool and at the the same time cut the front part of the sight post that is just an extra piece of tube. Also you can sand, polish and repaint this before you put it back on.

    B) The easy way. Have a 7/8 OD custom brake made to the precise measure and then pin it at the bottom. Make a wide square style like in my system that is easy to clean w/o removal and never need to take out.
    Measure the shroud diameter and if you get .707 for example request the brake with an .705 diameter. Then before you slide it in you will want a bit of oil and to heat it with a torch so it will expand a tad and go in like a glove.
    There are many nice designs for breaks that will perform better than the original AK. Stay light and short. The factory brakes are ok but not as good as one that you can have made. Let me know if you need help with an efficient brake design.

    I hope this helps.
    Cheers,
    E.
     
  10. nalioth

    nalioth Member

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    Unless you have an old, old Saiga, the FSB is hydraulically pin pressed in place (the two indentations on each side) You'll have to destroy the FSB to get it off.
    The easy way is to wait for DPH Arms to bring their no-mods Saiga rifle muzzle attachments to market (they're currently being field-tested).
     
  11. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    Negative.I have done it with brand new ones.
    once the pins are loose you can remove enough on the idententios that they loose their strength and with the added heat (not too much) they will come off.
    Then you can put them back on. This is much better and much cleaner job than cutting, grinding with the risk to cut on the barrel.

    The other easy way is a $40 or $50 custom muzzle brake that can be better than any other solutions out there. This already has been field tested BY ME many times over as I have done a 2 years scientific research in muzzle brakes and why they are good and can also be bad for your system. So the information that I have statistics and all is from first hand experience.
    I will make sure I will post pictures of this procedure as I am finding this might be helpful to others.

    Cheers,
    E.
     
  12. JQP

    JQP Member

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    Nice, nice rifles.

    I have a quick question: How difficult/easy would it be to swap out the stock on a stock VEPR II 20" rifle?

    I'm not sure I want to make any other mods, necessarily, but it would definitely improve ergonomics on the one rifle I will never sell (the VEPR) if I could put on a collapsible stock.
     
  13. nalioth

    nalioth Member

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    If you switch it with another stock designed for your VEPR, it should only take a screwdriver and a few minutes.
     
  14. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    JQP,
    Normally the stocks lock in in pretty similar ways. For example the stock above is for a milled receiver and it was mounted in a stamped receiver w/o major hickups. mostly it just requires some cutting and grinding and a set of good screws if you cannot re-use the factory ones.
    If you find something specific for the VEPR as suggested above even better but do not discard any other AK stocks as they should be pretty similar. If you take out the stock and provide a close up picture with some basic dimensions anyone could verify this for you. Also you will need a nice grip. I like the saw but there are many good ones out there.

    Regarding other changes to the VEPR is up to you. The main think with the 16" barrel is that the profile of this system LOVES average .308 and Nato rounds. So you give up a little speed for very good accuracy. The longer barrels are not so accurate. They can be more accurate but you will have to work out a load to hit the tune that specific barrel likes. So in other words all things being equal longer is faster and shorter is more accurate and this is a matter of harmonics. The shorter the more accuracy nodes you have in a given barrel, again, all other things being equal. Also a break can help you but it can make things worse so you have to play with this and tune it.

    VEPR are great rilfes, just like any saigas.

    cheers,
    E.
     
  15. mcdonl

    mcdonl Member

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    That would be awesome. That is the only part of this project that gives me concern.
     
  16. Girodin

    Girodin Member

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    Actually it dates back much further than the cold war era. It runs back to the 19th century in this country.
     
  17. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    This goes back to the fears and the twisted minds in the 1900's. Remember this wise words every day.. the only fear we have to fear
    is fear itself.
    Nothing about color, religion, sexual orientation, your football team or anything like that today. Nobody cares about this
    anymore and if they do then they are not good citizens.
    It comes down to government control and plans for growth and expansion at any cost in the most primitive form, communism in this case.

    In any case this is not subject for this thread so please stay with us and the AK and/or saigas here.

    mcdonl,
    As I mentioned "A" is not the easy option but I found this to be better than the other alternatives you asked me for. The thing does come off. It takes longer but you have
    more fun. You need some tools though. I will try to post a few steps here. Thanks for being open about learning. I am also learning a lot from you and everyone here every day.

    Cheers.
    E.
     
  18. LKB3rd

    LKB3rd Member

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    I have mentioned this in other threads, but my Saiga .308 16" is pretty damned accurate too. I have a "Mojo" peep rear sight, and a thin front post on it, so the limiting factor is me and my eyes, but as an example...
    I was at the range with some friends zeroing it for 100 yards, and one of them set up golf balls at the far end of the range, which is around 185 yards that we were shooting with a scoped 22-250. It was shooting accurately at 100 yards, and my friend says he wants to see me shoot at a golf ball. So I did 4 clicks on the mojo (3/4 moa per click), and off my elbows on the table I hit one on the first shot! We were all shocked :p I kept shooting, and in ten or so shots I think I hit two more, all of the shots were within 6 inches or so, and several moving the ball as the dirt splashed it.
    The accuracy was a pleasant surprise, I was expecting a reliable no frills rifle.. which I did get too.
    Question to 1stmarine: What is the noise and concussion like with a muzzle brake?
     
  19. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    More noise but manageable. Nothing more and nothing less than a M1A socom.I have the ports with plenty of bleeding directed upwards and forward. There is not noticeable increase in blast effect for me but way less recoil but you want good hear protection. You need this anyway whether you shoot this, a 223 or a .50 cal. Once hearing is gone, it is gone. Recoils is about 40% less with this custom brake design and follow up shots much faster, something specially desirable in this caliber for assault/MBR type of use. Also it doesn't impact the accuracy as I left the barrel floating and free of any attachments. I am actually going to remove the clamp-on front sight and go for a welded base for custom standard peep in the gas block. Again this is not needed only as backup as I always have in most of my systems a scope 2x7 or 2x9 with big eye relieve plus a red dot at 12 or 2 o'clock but it is good idea to always have some sort of fall-out plan with zeroed iron sigts. I guess everyone has different needs and likes for tuning each carbine

    In summary Overall I highly recommend a brake with this system. For my purpose is a must.
    The sight post on this was hard to take off but a little easier than the smaller saiga calibers.
    Let me know if you need more info. I am glad to help if I can.

    Cheers,
    E.
     
  20. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    Hi I just replied to a fellow member and I believe that I will create another post with the specific steps to convert the Saiga in AK-47 caliber but the process is very similar anyway.

    Just about any Saiga in the standard AK round 7.62x39 will take AK mags. I explained in the post that the saigas are nothing but AKs dressed up for importation so the great thing is they get to keep the original barrels, trunions, receivers, carriers etc... Everything is up to military spec w/o the auto trigger of course! lol!
    You might have to sand a little in the mag.latch but it is so little that sometimes you do not have to. Also I replace the standard latch for a tactical one anyway. You also need a bullet guide/feed ramp but you can buy it or make it with a piece of pipe for virtually 2 cents.

    This is the saiga with the AK surplus mag converted from one just like the below one....

    100_5957.gif

    [​IMG]

    http://www.atlanticfirearms.com/storeproduct708.aspx

    I hope this helps.
    Thanks.
    E.
     
  21. seldomseensmith

    seldomseensmith Member

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    GREAT WORK ON THOSE RIFLES!
    20fby8k-1.gif
     
  22. oerllikon

    oerllikon Member

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    I laughed at the post above. Those are great looking (and functioning) rifles you have there. I may be beating a dead horse, but Im pretty tired and couldnt completely understand the mod(s) you did in a nutshell. Did you convert them to a pistol grip, and 922r compliance?
    Great rifles, and I think one of these is on my list after a CZ75. Better than FAL accuracy, shooting a great round that could be used for hunting just about anything in north america, and plinking, with AK reliability. Definitely something to look into!
     
  23. JQP

    JQP Member

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    1stMarine, thanks.

    On a different note, I know the VEPR incorporates a RPK (Russian counterpart to squad automatic weapon) receiver, but does the Saiga, also?

    I was under the impression that the VERP was built at Vyatskie Polyany and was exclusive in the sense that it was the only 7.62x39 to use the RPK receiver.
     
  24. mshootnit

    mshootnit Member

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    JQP you want to do the Ace conversion with Ace Vepr Block. Easy to do.
     
  25. OrangePwrx9

    OrangePwrx9 Member

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    Yeah, Saigas are habit forming. Got 4 of those critters, but in .223 and 7.62x39...all unconverted. One of the best bargains going. None are as accurate as yours, however.

    I kinda drew the line at the .308 as far as Saigas go. Reasoned, "why would I want one as long as I've got a couple of accurate bolt .308s?". Well looking at your targets has got me thinking. Are all your .308 Saigas that accurate?? If Ishmash is cranking out guns that shoot well, I'll likely "need" a few more.

    I've stuck with the original Saiga "sporting" configuration for the time being. The trigger doesn't bother me, see no need for >10 rd. mags. at this point, and would rather avoid the attention an AK configured arm would bring. Anyone gets curious about it, I just say it's some kind of Russian hunting gun I picked up cheap. I've got the tools and some of the parts to do a conversion, but at this point lack the motivation.
    Bob
     
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