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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi, all ==

About ten years ago I bought a Romanian AK in 22LR, took it to the range and had nothing but trouble. Every kind of failure you can think of, and some interesting doubling and tripling, too. Woohoo. You all know the story...hell, this is the WASR 22 Forum.

I brought it home, cleaned it and slid it into a BoreStore, then stashed it in the safe vowing to "one day figure out how to get it running." Well, weeks turn into months and years and now a decade has passed. Recently I found some WASR 22 resources online that led me to this forum, which seems like the best source of practical information on this rifle.


My process thus far

1. I bought a bolt kit from Black Dog - the kit without the sprung firing pin because that FP kit is no longer available.

2. I bought two 30rnd magazines from Black Dog because everything I read online says they feed better than the original 10rnd mags.

3. I found this old thread on how to disassemble the bolt (see post #7 by Gladdis):
http://www.theakforum.net/forums/83...st-disassembly-instructions-wasr-22-bolt.html


My First Snag

The screw-like adjuster on the bottom of the bolt: If I understand correctly, the body of the adjuster (inside the bolt) involves a cam - so rotating the slotted head increases or decreases TENSION on the extractor spring. Am I right?

I modified an old screwdriver to form a blade that's narrow enough and thick enough to fill that (nasty, off-center) slot in the top of the tensioner. What a POS that thing is... Everything about it says, "STRIP ME!"

See the two pictures below. The left pic demonstrates the maximum I can rotate the tensioner to the left. The right pic shows max rotation to the right. Total rotation is only about 1/8 turn. That can't be right...right? At first I couldn't budge it at all, so I soaked it in Liquid Wrench for a couple of days. That got me to what you see in the pictures.

I'm grateful to have found this forum, and will much appreciate ANY help you guys are willing to share.

Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks. Yes, I found them this morning.

Can you offer me any advice on turning the tensioner. That's my first challenge.

It appears yours turned more than 1/4-turn (more than 90 degrees). Mine hardly turns at all.

Was your tensioner stiff/stuck initially?

How much effort should it take to turn it?

When turning to reduce tension (as in your second image) did you turn it CLOCKWISE from how it appears in your first image?

I just don't want to bugger that slot.
 

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I have an experience factor of exactly one rifle to tell you my experience from.

My tension-er turns either direction. Place finger on extractor and press back and forth on it to note when tension increases. Press towards the bolt on the tension screw and turn till you feel the tension increasing. Like the tension screw is detented to lock it in place. If your forcing it, your trying to strip the detent.

That is how mine works.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I have an experience factor of exactly one rifle to tell you my experience from.
Thanks for clarifying, but at one rifle you're 100% more experienced than I am. :grin:


My tensioner turns either direction. Place finger on extractor and press back and forth on it to note when tension increases. Press towards the bolt on the tension screw and turn till you feel the tension increasing.
I sat down in front of the computer with the bolt and my modified screwdriver. I read your comments several times and did exactly what you said to do.

I tried waggling the extractor back and forth as I tried turning the tensioner. I made sure not to force anything, and nothing happened for a while...and then IT TURNED! Ha! Now, as long as I press on the extractor (and kind of wiggle it) the tensioner turns with no sticking at all. Thanks very much for that specific instruction.


Like the tension screw is detented to lock it in place. If your forcing it, your trying to strip the detent. That is how mine works.
I can turn the tensioner slot about 90 degrees. So it starts out horizontal (in relation to my two pictures above) and then I turn it until it ends up horizontal again.


I'm not quite sure, but it feels like turning it causes the following:

1. Maximum rotation counter-clockwise (LEFT) puts the LEAST spring tension on the extractor

2. Maximum rotation clockwise (RIGHT, toward the bolt face) puts the MOST spring tension on the extractor

Can somebody double-check me on that?

Thanks
 

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Clockwise should increase the tension. Sounds like you got it going correctly.

Keep your chin up, they can be VERY reliable and fun when set up correctly

here is video of mine


and picture

 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Clockwise should increase the tension. Sounds like you got it going correctly.
Keep your chin up, they can be VERY reliable and fun when set up correctly. here is video of mine
and picture
Thanks for confirmation on direction-of-rotation.

Your rifle looks great with that stock, pistol grip and handguard. And that video is encouraging to say the least. A far cry from my initial experiences. I'll work to achieve what you have there. You may have done just one, but you did it right! :grin:

QUESTIONS

Q1. Is that steel magazine an example of pulling the guts out of an original 10rnd plastic mag and fitting them into a standard mag body?

Q2. Are you using the original WASR 22 top cover? If so, did you modify it? In your picture it looks like you might have cut away the portion in front of its uniquely small ejector port... If the original doesn't work I'll probably replace it with a standard AK top cover.

Q3. Did you install a BDM bolt-rebuild kit? If so, is it the kit with its own sprung firing pin, or the kit without FP? Black Dog no longer sells the kit with the replacement FP, so I'll be using my original firing pin.

Q4. Did you install a standard AK47 extractor spring, or are you using the (weaker) spring that came with the rifle?

Q5. Did you ramp the bottom edge of the chamber for smoother feeding?

Q6. Did you modify the tops of your BDM mag followers to facilitate a better feed angle into the chamber? And did you do the same to the original WASR 22 10rnd mags?

I appreciate as much detail as possible on these questions, and any other methods that achieve the kind of reliability demonstrated in your video.

And if anyone can point me to a comprehensive thread, or group of threads or ANY online material that provides details on the overall process of sorting out this rifle PLEASE CLUE ME IN.

Thanks

PS. I forgot to mention: I installed a Tapco double-hook trigger group in my rifle ten years ago. So trigger and hammer are no problem.
 

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Okay, down the line here

#1 MPi-69 magazine reworked to fit the rifle (bout a 1/2 hour job, if you have a MPi-69 magazine, I can walk you through what is involved, but you kinda need a magazine in front of you to follow what I am talking about in the conversion)

#2 original top cover cut off as the pictures show. People will always write about plugging the gas tube hole and or the area between the bolt and the top cover to keep empty shells out. That is not even close to fixing the problem because you still get empties bouncing back into the receiver which "can" cause jams. You want the empties long gone. As you can see in the video, they fly clean and true far away. Cut the topcover and problem solved. I "tried" a regular standard AK topcover first, but for some reason, it was not long enough to lock in correctly. If you have an extra topcover on hand, try it, but for some reason, my rifle requires a longer topcover than a standard AK. Not sure what the deal is there or if it applies to any other rifles as I have a "experience level ONE" right now (and if anyone finds one of these for sale and does not want it, please let me know, would love another). I can post a picture later of my rifles topcover next to about 5 other AK topcovers, they are all shorter. Again, not sure why this is. If a standard AK topcover will work, go for it. I had to cut mine.

#3 I have not used one of their bolt rebuild kits. No experience with them one way or another.

#4 My extractor spring was sufficient as it came. I did though, build my own extractor (that may be beyond the abilities of most people though) which may be why the stock spring is sufficent. The current extractor did not grasp firmly enough the casing. A stronger spring may fix that, but as I have done gunsmithing since the 80's and have the tools to do such, building an extractor with a better radius was the "best" fix. If you can not do that, I would A: increasing stock tension as much as possible and test B: Contour face of extractor to match curvature of the case or C: try stronger spring (whichever you feel most comfortable with at your tools / skill level. Some of what I did is beyond tabletop gunsmith's but I probably overkilled the extractor thing.

#5 Definitely ramped the bottom, but again, a little goes a long ways. You can always take more off, can never put it back. Doing this correctly will negate having to address #6 as it is no longer a problem. I also radiused around the extractor to enable a clear path out for the empties. Getting the empties out cleanly is key here.

#6 See #5


First and foremost thing though.

Address one issue at a time. If you change / "fix" more than one thing at a time you may be causing a problem you don't even realize.

I would start with getting solid clean extraction first, then move on to feeding (may necessitate hand feeding rounds one at a time till it is sorted out).

People will say put a lighter recoil spring in. Be very reluctant to do this. On a blowback firearm, reducing the recoil spring actually reduces the kinetic force of the ejection process as it opens the system to early in the dwell of the recoil pulse. Sometimes when you think a lighter recoil spring is needed, a heavier one actually will fix it. But that is a whole "nother box o worms"

I will be off and on the computer over the next week but will try to address any problems / questions you may have.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Man oh man oh man! What a GREAT reply!

I'm not sure I deserve this level of help :grin:, and certainly not from an experienced gunsmith like yourself. I really appreciate it and will try not to wear out my welcome.

I note your hit-and-miss computer access in the coming week, and I need time to digest the information you've already given me. For now, just a couple of brief points:


#1 I figured out what an MPi-69 magazine is. I will ask you to advise me on those mods IF I get this thing running. FWIW, I have a small milling machine. My amateur machinist skills are limited and a bit rusty, but I'm pretty resourceful.


#2 See two pics below (left and right sides) of a Romanian G AK47 receiver cover on the WASR 22. It fits well, but the bolt handle hits at the rear of the ejection port. I also tried a Polish PMKMS cover. It seems to be about 1/16" too long for the WASR 22 (yeah, too long...)

Romy G topcover on WASR 22 - Left Side

Romy G topcover on WASR 22 - Right Side

The pictured top cover belongs to another rifle, so if anybody has a Romy G top cover for sale ( cheap :grin: ) let me know. I also need some rear stock trunnions.


One other thing: Thanks a LOT for your initial instructions on turning the ejector tensioner. I went back and really focused on pressing down on the slot (in other words, using the flat tip of my screwdriver to press the tensioner into the body of the bolt). Trying again with that particular emphasis makes it possible to turn the tensioner a FULL 360 DEGREES. That's progress!

Thanks, geefal

PS. Your username isn't a reference to the FN FAL rifle, is it?
If it is, you and I might be long-lost brothers or something...
 

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Good to know I am not the only one running into different length topcover fitment on this. I wish I had more of these WASR.22's to play with, but only know of a couple plus what people have had on these boards, must not have been many of them ever available.

Note on the tensioner. When you do finally get it to the "right place" and everything is working correctly to your satisfaction, make a little scribe mark on the bottom of the bolt for reference, and either lightly stake it, or put some blue loctite on there. It can and will rotate otherwise (wouldn't think it would, but I have had it happen twice now) and all of a sudden it does not seem to work well anymore. If you scribe it, then when the magazine is out, you can visually inspect from the bottom that it is still in the correct spot.

And yes indeed, it refers to the G Series FAL. First gun I really started to seriously "collect" till I got into aviation, then sold my collection down to purchase an airplane.
 
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