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First time AK build

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I've been playing with this for a while; but I figured I would show a picture of my progress and begin the build log. She is a 1972, Romanian made, battlefield pickup.

That has been a very slow build for me, despite having all the necessary tools on hand for months. I opted not to buy any of the jigs or commercial building aids; the few things I really need are easy enough to assemble myself. The one thing that plagues me is the order of operations. While I know I need to rivet my front trunnion soon; it is apparently best to weld the rails first, and do the heat treating beforehand so the trunnion doesn't sink the heat. I also decided pretty early on that I want to hand finish as much of this as possible. That means using a drill and hand file to make each hole correct. I also opted to meet my 922(r) requirements by making all the furniture myself. That lets me keep the original FCG that came with my parts kit, and use a foreign made magazine if I want. I can't use the donkey dick hand grip anyway; so that's totally fine with me. That and the upper handguard has tally marks, so I might as well save that someone who could appreciate it, one day... Somewhere else but here...

So far: Brand new US made barrel is blued, most of the lower holes are roughly drilled inside of tolerances, all front trunnion rivets fit well, most of the rear trunnion holes are close to finished, magazine fits very well with front trunnion position.

Still to finish: clamp, drill pilots, and weld on the rails, grind rails for mag fit, trigger guard install, center support hole, make the trigger/hammer holes work perfect, rivet it all together, finish milling the wood furniture, press the barrel in again while setting headspace (again), populate the barrel, assemble, test, fix, test, fix, shoot, adjust front sight, clean and blue the lower. Not quite in that order though...

Oh yeah; and no pistol grip is allowed here; so picture that abomination of a spur on an AK.


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