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Old November 26, 2012, 12:48 AM   #1
JohnKSa
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Assorted SKS information.

I ended up stripping the cosmoline off a surplus Yugo SKS for a friend. It turns out that either Goo Gone or Ballistol does a decent job of removing cosmoline.

After I finished, I tried the trigger and it was really bad. Long, gritty and heavy. I figured it couldn't really be that bad, so I stripped the trigger, cleaned, lubricated and reassembled it.

I learned a couple of things. First of all, to remove the hammer, use a short length of pipe with an inside diameter that's about the same size as the hammer. Slip it over the hammer and use it as leverage to pull the entire hammer back until the hammer lugs clear the trigger group "housing". You can do it without the pipe, but it requires significant effort.

If you don't have to remove the trigger/trigger bar itself, avoid doing so. If you have to remove it, make a slave pin with one rounded/tapered end to get the hole lined up for reassembly. Otherwise it requires at least 3 hands to hold everything in place and drive the pin in.

The biggest change came from cleaning and lubricating the "rails" on the sear and trigger group housing. With the grit removed and some decent lubricant in place, the trigger was actually quite good. Still long, but lighter and very smooth. Almost like a good DAO pistol trigger. That cleaning/lubrication can be accomplished by removing the magazine latch. Drive the forward pin (the one that protrudes on both sides of the trigger group housing out from left to right. The magazine latch and the magazine latch spring will slide out the front of the trigger group housing and you can then remove the sear out the front as well.

Clean the parts, and the rails inside the trigger group that accomodate the sear and magazine latch and then put it all back together.

The front of the trigger bar and the lower front of the sear don't need to be lubricated. They need to engage each other without slipping. If the sear or trigger bar is worn, lubrication can cause the trigger bar to slip off the sear and the hammer won't drop.

If that happens, it's probably time for the attentions of a gunsmith unless you are particularly handy with a file, have a light touch and understand how the two parts are supposed to interact.

When you're cleaning the disassembled gun, you'll eventually get irritated by the disassembly pin which flops around and generally gets in the way. To prevent this, get a plastic drinking straw and cut off a length that's just long enough to fit on the shaft when the pin is pulled all the way out. Split the straw length and slip it over the shaft. It will hold the disassembly pin fairly securely and will hold it out of the gun where it won't interfere with a cleaning rod and won't flop around.

To strip or reassemble the recoil spring assembly, use a thin rod (the cleaning rod will work) run up the back of the recoil spring guide to prevent the two-piece recoil spring guide from collapsing/telescoping into itself. Pull back on the spring and slide the spring retainer off the guide.

When you're cleaning a Yugo, after you've removed the gas tube & piston, move the gas "button" to the single shot position, flip the grenade launcher sight up and then move the gas button to the forward position in the slot and remove it and the spring that tensions it. Next pull the gas block insert out of the gas block and fill the gas block cavity with a couple of cotton balls packed into place. That will keep solvent from running out of the gas hole during the cleaning process. You can remove the cotton with long nose pliers when you're done.

If the gun is a standard SKS without the single shot option, skip all the grenade launcher stuff and just poke some cotton inside the gas block.

I thought it was interesting to find RC hardness test marks throughout the gun.

The cleaning kit needs to go into the buttstock cap first.
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Old November 26, 2012, 01:20 AM   #2
egor20
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Great hints and advise John.

You should Sticky this.
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Old November 26, 2012, 09:15 AM   #3
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I recently acquired my Father's Chinese Type 56 Vietnam bring-back, complete with paperwork. They're actually very basic to disassemble.

The recoil spring assembly is loads of fun...

Another thing to remember on an SKS with a free floating firing pin is to keep the pin and firing pin channel dry after cleaning to help avoid slam-fires.
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Old November 26, 2012, 11:28 AM   #4
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SKS Disassembly How-To Link

Lots of good info there John; people will be referencing that for a while on here. I figured I'd add the 'how to dissassemble/assemble a SKS' video above for those new SKS owners clicking on this link for info that don't know how to go about...
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Old November 26, 2012, 11:49 AM   #5
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surplusrifle.com has a good info base as well:

http://surplusrifle.com/sks/index.asp
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Old November 27, 2012, 05:34 PM   #6
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There are some good tips in that write up, thanks. Been a long time since I took down an SKS to that level.
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Old December 1, 2012, 03:02 AM   #7
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John, you might want to post that on SKSboards, if you visit that website.

Despite their wealth of knowledge and specialized forums, they could benefit from your experience.
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Old December 1, 2012, 03:32 PM   #8
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Thanks for the kind words.

I'm not on that forum, but anyone who is, is certainly welcome to post a link to that forum, or any other that they feel may benefit from the information.
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Old December 1, 2012, 05:49 PM   #9
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SKS fan here, any info is appreciated.
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Old December 1, 2012, 11:40 PM   #10
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Regarding cosmoline, This stuff is like wax if you boil a component the cosmoline will float to the top and solidify as the water cools. Now dry and lube the component and you are good to go.
This method works well with stripper clips.
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Old December 1, 2012, 11:44 PM   #11
JohnKSa
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That will work, as will using a hair dryer to soften the cosmoline so you can wipe it off easily. I used that method to clean the cosmoline off the leather items in the kit as well as the provided manual to avoid having to soak them in solvent.
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Old December 6, 2012, 08:03 PM   #12
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Laquer thinner works great dissolving cosmoline off old SKS's. Make sure you are outdoors, and wet a rag with it , then wipe all the goo off.
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Old December 13, 2012, 08:02 PM   #13
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Couple yugo sks issues I had.

After hours of cleaning cosmoline I was ready to test out my sks. I loaded up 5rounds and pulled the trigger it fired but did not cycle. I checked grenade launch select It was off. After some research I found that it was loosing gas pressure at front of gas tube. I made a copper gasket and it started cycling perfectly. I loaded up 10 rounds and after a couple rounds it went full auto. It's kinda funny now but at the moment it wasn't. After inspecting the rifle I found that the firing pin was stuck forward. That of course is extremely dangerous. You could release the bolt and it would runaway without ever pulling the trigger. I found that the firing pin is free floating and tapered at the front. Due to wear and the inside of the bolt being extremely dirty the firing pin had wedged forward. I cleaned it and polished till I could feel the firing pin shake back and forth in the bolt. I still check it every time I take it out. I've also heard there is a spring type design to fix that issue that I intend to look into. I know now to check out used guns thoroughly before assuming they are safe. Any fix for the firing pin issue would be appreciated.
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Old December 15, 2012, 04:56 PM   #14
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What you're thinking off is the Murray's firing pin conversion. It's a great idea but I haven't had it done. It's supposed to completely eliminate slam fires. Here's a link to Murray's Guns to check it out, he's also got videos posted the slam fire and the fix on that page.

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