This week, I’m going through the steps of building a rifle from Yugoslavian surplus parts on a milled receiver. Of course, there’s a lot of work that goes into a project such as this. The very first thing I do is sift through the pile of parts to make sure I have everything to complete the build. The next step is to degrease and clean all the Cosmoline so I can begin the process of “de milling” the parts. This is cutting off all the old rivets, or stripping the items I need from what I don’t. As you may know, most of the parts kits sold on the US market today are simply left over war relics that have been decommissioned by torch or saw cutting the old weapons into pieces.
Let me stress to the readers now that there’s ”more than one way to skin a cat”, as that saying goes. I’m merely outlining the steps that I used to construct this particular rifle based on the materials I had on hand. This is NOT a a tutorial, and definitely not the only way a Kalashnikov rifle is built. Let me be clear that I AM NOT OPEN TO DEBATE on how you or your buddy did things differently. I myself have used different methods in the past in order to achieve a certain result…. That being a functioning firearm that is civilian legal to use in my particular state where I live. All ATF compliance rules apply.
For the sake of brevity here, I skipped ahead and didn’t include photos of the demilling process. I’m starting this with setting the rivets for the trigger guard and pistol grip. I’m using a 30 ton air-over-hydraulic press to properly squash the heads of the rivets. A bit of caution is called for because this press can easily crush the parts I need instead of simply crushing the rivet heads.
A bit of a better close up.
Here you can see the barrel components and the barrel together. it’s important to note that this is one called a “virgin” barrel. This means there is no gas port predrilled, and there are no predrilled holes to locate any of the components. Because of this, I’ll be proceeding with the build in a slightly different manner than I usually do. Only the notch for the front hand guar lock is used to indicate where the top of the barrel is, and to use this as a reference point for everything else.