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Old 04-04-2017, 11:46 PM   #1
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Default Round __ "My PSAK Build Experience" Rather than complain, improve.

Hello,

New member here who found the forum after already placing an order for a PSAK based on reviews of Rob Ski and a couple others. I went with the kit because of cost, the non-blem rifles were out of stock and I like to DIY where I can.
I applaud PSA as well as other US AK manufacturers for their efforts to put out a quality AK at a reasonable price, for this reason I have no Ill feelings at this time for my experience, I just hope the "bugs/QC" issues get worked out.

To make this post shortER, the kit arrived within a week, I went to my FFL where I picked up the kit, its not well lit there, so I looked to make sure all the pieces were there and took it home. My thoughts:

When I opened the box, dust cover still in place, the rifle’s finish looked great, one of the best finishes I’ve seen on an AK, great job! I then take the dust cover off to find a CAST Bolt Carrier, instead of the Forged one that xxx said would come with it, because that was a “Fixed issue” with the GB2 kits.

Now for the additional issues with the barreled receiver.

1. The bolt/BCG will only seat into the trunnion with a good deal of force.
I believe this is due to the incorrect installation of the ejector (Edit Not ejector, extractor)(point 2). Additionally, the Firing Pin and Ejector should be user serviceable, as is the case with all my other AK’s. This one the Firing-pin retaining-pin is crushed, looks like a square peg in a round hole. I was unable to remove it as I can on all my other AK’s from various manufactures.
2. The extractor is protruding quite a bit out of the bolt, much more so than my other 2 AK’s, will not hold a round, and is difficult to move as compared to my other AK bolts. Also, the bottom of the extractor sits above the bolt face .
3. The flash hider retaining pin is so loose that it will not keep the slant brake from turning. A non-issue with my Midwest industries brake installed, but this shouldn't be the case and the spring is weak compared to other AK’s. Possibly too much material taken off of the retaining pin.

4. The piston head is deformed, most likely by a grinder, meaning it isn’t the shape is should be, I don’t know how that will effect the ability of the rifle to function as I haven’t received the rest of my build kit yet and haven't shot it. Additionally wouldn’t want to shoot it with the BCG/Bolt problem.

5. Roll pin is being used to hold the Piston. I can’t imagine that has the holding capacity of a rivet? Not a big issue, had to be noted.

6. Rivets for rear trunnion not formed correctly? May be a non-issue, though, Rob Ski’s and others I have seen have the mushroomed rivets.

7. Cast carrier is of poor quality, meaning the casting looks to be porous. If the Carrier on the test PSAK sent to Rob Ski has a Cast carrier, it is of a much better casting or it was worked, smoothed over prior to him receiving the rifle. To me, the issue with this carrier seems to be more than just a “finish” issue. It is also oversized or the the bolt is, the bolt has to be inserted just right for it to go in and it is a tight fit, somewhat difficult for me to explain in writing.

So, those are the issues I had with mine, not sure how many others with "Sticky bolts" realize the ejector may be the issue. Someone from PSA has replied to my service request (took a day for initial reply, another day for a 2nd reply, and someone will be contacting me tomorrow since I have to send a serialized part back) and I plan to send the receiver back on Thursday, if I have the RA and shipping label.

To be continued......
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Old 04-05-2017, 09:38 AM   #2
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Thank you for your Purchase.

IM us your order number and we will be happy to take a look at the issues you addressed. Your receiver kit carries a lifetime warranty against defects, and we will be happy to fix any such problems.

The cast carrier is indeed what was in the Robski gun, and we are confident it is both reliable and durable enough to offer the customer a lifetime of service. We have a warranty to back it up. However, if you have one of the non-freedom kits purchased before Feb 8th., you are eligible for a carrier upgrade.

Please IM us your order number and we will fix you up.
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Old 04-05-2017, 10:36 AM   #3
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Default Cast or other than cast?

PSA Freedom GB2 Cast carrier

[IMG]Rear left PSA BCG Cast by Andrew Jasper, on Flickr[/IMG]
[IMG]Rear PSA BCG cast by Andrew Jasper, on Flickr[/IMG]

One from Rob Ski's review
[IMG]FullSizeRender-9 by Andrew Jasper, on Flickr[/IMG]

[IMG]IMG_0612 by Andrew Jasper, on Flickr[/IMG]

Notice the difference in the quality of the casting?

Last edited by Thumper5102; 04-05-2017 at 07:37 PM. Reason: Photo sizing
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Old 04-12-2017, 03:47 PM   #4
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I think you guys really need to double check the build kits. I have bought 2 barreled recievers and 2 MOE plum build kits. My 1st build kit was missing the grip insert and the screw as well as the stock attachment hardware...kit#2 received Monday is missing the grip insert and the screw. It is kinda irritating to not have the parts in the build kit....I bought several ar kits from you guys over the years and never had this problem.
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Old 04-19-2017, 01:39 PM   #5
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They received the barreled receiver on the 9th. Here it is the 19th, still no word as to when I might expect it back. Ordered on 3/24 and still have yet to be able to have a firing rifle.... almost 1 month later!
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Old 04-22-2017, 12:02 AM   #6
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Spoke to PSA Thursday, still no word as to when it will be back in my possession. Hopefully when I get it back it will be right.

- Frustrated but hopefully
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Old 04-22-2017, 07:17 AM   #7
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In the photo of the bolt carrier...
Is the carrier actually made of cast? Or is that some sort of funky coating? Look down at the lower right corner...looks like its starting to flake off.
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Old 04-22-2017, 05:01 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RG Coburn View Post
In the photo of the bolt carrier...
Is the carrier actually made of cast? Or is that some sort of funky coating? Look down at the lower right corner...looks like its starting to flake off.
My bolt carrier is actually a cast piece, a poor one at that. You can see the casting marks, showing the mold edges. By a poor casting, you can see how porous the casting appears. If Rob Skis carrier is cast, it is a very good casting, meaning, you cannot see many pores in the casting and the casting marks are not easily visible in the pictures.

I'd be happy with a quality cast bolt carrier, if it looks like the one pictured on Rob Ski's rifle.
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Old 04-28-2017, 12:15 AM   #9
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5 more days, still no word. Now has been 18 days since they received my rifle and since 3/24 when I purchased.
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Old 04-28-2017, 10:42 AM   #10
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Thank you for your patience,

We apologize about the trouble you have experienced. A new AK replacement with the forged carrier components is being shipped out to your chosen FFL shortly. We have provided the necessary contact information to have your transfer fee covered upon receipt. Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

Again, we thank you for your patience.

Last edited by Palmetto State Armory; 04-28-2017 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 04-28-2017, 12:57 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Palmetto State Armory View Post
Thank you for your patience,

We apologize about the trouble you have experienced. A new AK replacement with the forged carrier components is being shipped out to your chosen FFL shortly. We have provided the necessary contact information to have your transfer fee covered upon receipt. Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

Again, we thank you for your patience.
Thank you for your reply and the phone call. I look forward to receiving and building my kit with the Forged carrier.
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Old 05-07-2017, 01:42 AM   #12
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It has been over 1 month since I sent my barreled receiver back and now my new barreled receiver will be at my FFL on Monday, too bad I work all week. I may have to try and get out of work on Monday to pick up the thing. Hopefully there won't be any issues, would rather find out during the week, when I can contact PSA with any issues.... hopefully there will be none. Will report back my findings here.
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Old 05-08-2017, 01:52 PM   #13
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Default Replacement barreled receiver.

So I received my new barreled receiver today and the good thing is that the bolt closes with little effort. On another note, the receiver I was told it would come with a forged bolt carrier group by a CS rep named Ron as well as Robert W. the CS manager. As you will see in the pictures, once I get them uploaded, this was not what came with it.
They were kind enough to send me a few P mags. I do appreciate the gesture, I would like for this rifle to be up and running and have in my hands what I originally thought I was getting. I give them credit as their CS has been nice if quite a bit slow. I received this back a little over a month after sending it to them.
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Old 05-08-2017, 03:38 PM   #14
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[IMG]FullSizeRender-18 by Andrew Jasper, on Flickr[/IMG]
[IMG]FullSizeRender-19 by Andrew Jasper, on Flickr[/IMG]
[IMG]FullSizeRender-16 by Andrew Jasper, on Flickr[/IMG]

Firing pin retaining pin, mashed in, may not affect function, will make it difficult to service possibly.

[IMG]FullSizeRender-20 by Andrew Jasper, on Flickr[/IMG]

Rear rivets all look like this. Is it going to affect the way the rifle functions? I wouldn't think so, though I will watch them carefully, if they start to come loose. Just something which could be improved.

[IMG]FullSizeRender-17 by Andrew Jasper, on Flickr[/IMG]
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Old 05-08-2017, 11:24 PM   #15
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Any update?
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Old 05-09-2017, 01:38 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moab View Post
Any update?
No update as of yet, maybe I'll hear from someone tomorrow. I'd be happy if they just sent me the Forged carrier a replacement firing pin retaining pin. (and the rifle functions properly when I shoot it) I truly do not understand why they have to "stake" the firing pin retainer pin in the bolt. Most AK's have them where you can remove them with a few taps of a brass hammer on a brass pin punch.

If you look at their replacement bolts and the bolt in the rifle sent to Rob Ski, you will see they did not do this. They sell replacement parts such as firing pin, firing pin retainer pin, extractor and extractor pin retaining pins.

When I sent my 1st kit back I sent a letter with it detailing items they may want to watch out for to make a good product and places they could improve their product. IF PSA is really wanting to get into the AK game and be a big US player, they don't really have to do much other than watch the quality control and send out the right components.

I'm no expert, actually quite a novice in the AK world, so take my comments knowing this. I do have a MAK90, CIA milled AK63D, VEPR 12 w/folding stock and VEPR FM AK47-11 for comparison of the different builds.
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Old 05-09-2017, 01:44 AM   #17
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Additionally about the Bolt Carrier. I compared that bolt carrier/gas piston pinning job to the one on my Polish bolt (very high quality bolt IMO) and it seem the pin is about the same size, though that pin you can hardly see, due to the way it was done, kind of like the pin on my MAK 90. The pin is smaller on the VEPR FM.
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Old 05-11-2017, 12:02 AM   #18
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So today I receive an email from a "Customer Service & Compliance Specialist
Firearms/Repairs/Returns/Fix It Agent" at PSA.

Good Morning,

I am emailing you in regards to your PSAK47 with the cast carrier that was recently exchanged. I am sorry to hear that your first rifle was not to your liking and I understand that you would like a forged carrier, unfortunately we will not be able to facilitate this request and I apologize if such a guarantee was made to you. Every forged carrier is fitted to the receiver therefore we would be unable to send you a standalone Forged Carrier, furthermore you originally ordered a Freedom ​barreled receiver. The Freedom line is advertised as cast and would not warrant an exchange for a forged carrier. I will initiate the refund on your transfer fee and I can extend a ___refund on the cost of the receiver if you would like to keep it.

Here's what I think:
Mind you they had my kit in hand and sent me a different serial number kit. Were it a matter of "you bought the wrong item" they could have said: The "Liberty series blem kits run $369, your Freedom series was $359, would you like to pay the extra $10 for the Liberty since we will have to send you a different serialized kit?" Or just sent me a Liberty kit instead, since the 1st rifle had to go back and I waited a month before getting the new one.

I don't think I'm being outrageous, but when I seen the email it kinda pissed me off. I am trying to give PSA a shot. I want a US AK in my collection, but after this I'm thinking I should do as many others have and just stay away from PSAK.

Not a good 1st purchase experience PSA. The guarantee of a forged carrier was made to me by no less than 3 individuals. One of whom I called shortly after placing my initial order and realizing it said cast carrier. Said I wanted to cancel the order because of said cast carrier. He was the 1st to say it was a Hammer forged carrier.

"Sorry the rifle wasn't to my liking" how about the bolt wouldn't even close without excessive force. The extractor pin was incorrectly installed, the muzzle device retaining pin wouldn't hold, same rivet issue.
Additionally since the beginning of April I purchased a few items the 42 Croatian mags, an M&P shield .45 and had my dad order an M&P shield 9mm for himself which I paid for.
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Old 05-11-2017, 11:18 AM   #19
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There seems to be a big disconnect between PSA CS and whoever is monitoring this forum. This is the largest AK forum there is. Their reputation rises and falls on peoples perception here. This is not good for the sales of their newish US made AK's.

After reading your situation. Viewing your pics and seeing how their CS handles things. I've waived off buying any of their kits. I to offered to spend more for a forged bolt carrier kit and they told me no. Which I thought was weird. Since I can simply return them and buy what I want. So I returned the two I had purchased. I think you should stick with rifles made from original kits. There doesn't seem to be a solid alternative to those yet.

As expensive as AK's are getting. Maybe it's time that building came back. The price of kits is still pretty high though. Your looking at $700(?) just for supplies. Not including jigs and tools to build. That's another $500 at least. Plan on building at least 3 to recoup your money. It's worth it. If your into AK's. They aren't that hard to build. Especially if you start from some of these already barreled kits.
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Old 05-13-2017, 02:50 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper5102 View Post
So today I receive an email from a "Customer Service & Compliance Specialist
Firearms/Repairs/Returns/Fix It Agent" at PSA.

Good Morning,

I am emailing you in regards to your PSAK47 with the cast carrier that was recently exchanged. I am sorry to hear that your first rifle was not to your liking and I understand that you would like a forged carrier, unfortunately we will not be able to facilitate this request and I apologize if such a guarantee was made to you. Every forged carrier is fitted to the receiver therefore we would be unable to send you a standalone Forged Carrier, furthermore you originally ordered a Freedom ​barreled receiver. The Freedom line is advertised as cast and would not warrant an exchange for a forged carrier. I will initiate the refund on your transfer fee and I can extend a ___refund on the cost of the receiver if you would like to keep it.
And here's the slap in the face in their daily deals section. A PSA Forged Bolt carrier for $89.99 free shipping. I guess every Forged carrier doesn't need to be fitted to the receiver or they don't list it as "needs fit by a qualified gunsmith." Such as they do on their bolts. Yes, they are in stock and part of the "Daily Deals" I get email blasted. http://palmettostatearmory.com/psak-...516445944.html

Here's the item description:

PSAK-47 Liberty Forged Bolt Carrier Assembly with Blackened Stainless Steel Piston - 516445944

PSAK-47 LIBERTY FORGED BOLT CARRIER ASSEMBLY WITH BLACKENED STAINLESS STEEL PISTON - 516445944
Be the first to review this product
IN STOCK
$ 109.99 $ 89.99 Qty:
ADD TO CART
SKU: 516445944
UPC: 516445944
MFR#: 516445148
Caliber: 7.62x39mm
Carrier Material: 4140 Forged Steel
Carrier Coating: Black Oxide
Piston Material: Blackened 416 Stainless Steel
Overall length: 13.5"
Weight: .93 lbs
Piston Attached to Carrier with Rivet
All Parts are Proudly Made in the USA
ADD TO:
Add to Wishlist Wishlist Add to Compare Compare SHARE:Email to a Friend Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Instagram!

PSAK-47 bolt carrier assembly with piston. Carrier is forged from 4140 steel, piston is blackened 416 stainless steel. Designed to function with the 7.62x39mm PSAK-47 GB2 designed barrel receiver and rifles.
SKU: 516445944
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Old 05-13-2017, 03:08 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moab View Post
There seems to be a big disconnect between PSA CS and whoever is monitoring this forum. This is the largest AK forum there is. Their reputation rises and falls on peoples perception here. This is not good for the sales of their newish US made AK's.

After reading your situation. Viewing your pics and seeing how their CS handles things. I've waived off buying any of their kits. I to offered to spend more for a forged bolt carrier kit and they told me no. Which I thought was weird. Since I can simply return them and buy what I want. So I returned the two I had purchased. I think you should stick with rifles made from original kits. There doesn't seem to be a solid alternative to those yet.

As expensive as AK's are getting. Maybe it's time that building came back. The price of kits is still pretty high though. Your looking at $700(?) just for supplies. Not including jigs and tools to build. That's another $500 at least. Plan on building at least 3 to recoup your money. It's worth it. If your into AK's. They aren't that hard to build. Especially if you start from some of these already barreled kits.
It's unfortunate that I really want to keep this rifle, it "looks" well built and it is... though they have QC issues in assembly, that's the problem, documented by myself as well as others. A shame as this is heads and tails above a RAS47, C39 and other comparable US Made AKs. The quality and finish of the parts appear to be top notch even if not chromed. You'd have to see one in person to know what I was talking about.

Still, my big hang up has been with not receiving what was promised, a simple matter of principle.

One day I'd like to build my own, at this time I can't see spending the $ for the tools to do so and kits aren't cheap either as you have stated.
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Old 05-13-2017, 10:01 AM   #22
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They did the same thing to me, I send them the cast carrier for an exchange cause I when I purchase it it didn't said freedom,they change the description the day after I bought mine.Even so the had the audacity of not changing it and send me the exact cast pos that I send for replacement...I bought a polish carrier from apex and I'm completely done with PSA and the bullshit......
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Old 05-13-2017, 10:20 PM   #23
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They did the same thing to me, I send them the cast carrier for an exchange cause I when I purchase it it didn't said freedom,they change the description the day after I bought mine.Even so the had the audacity of not changing it and send me the exact cast pos that I send for replacement...I bought a polish carrier from apex and I'm completely done with PSA and the bullshit......
I'm hopeful once the cast carrier issue is behind them and provided they can tighten up their QC, these rifles will be quality. Unsure how well it will hold up past the 5000 rounds, that had been shot by Rob Ski. I thought if I kept it I may just buy a forged carrier, then I thought I'd be better off putting that $98 towards another rifle or ammo.
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Old 05-15-2017, 03:53 PM   #24
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I too bought my GB2 back in January, i noticed after reading this post my bolt carrier is cast and shows the same pourus dimples as images inidacte.
Who makes these cast carriers? Were they cast in USA by DDI or are they surplus imports? Also, has anyone seen cast carriers break?
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Old 05-15-2017, 04:47 PM   #25
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Great...my barrelled kit arrives at my FFL on Tuesday. Supposed to have the forged carrier and bolt. As an AK newbie, I wouldn't have known what to look for to determine "cast". Now that I've seen a picture it seems pretty obvious. I paid extra for the ALG trigger -- hopefully other than this roll pin, it won't require any fitting to get THAT set up, assuming the PSAK kit itself is good to go.

Thanks for sharing your experience and especially the pics!
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Old 05-15-2017, 11:47 PM   #26
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I also paid extra for the ALG trigger and it went in without any fitting needed. It feels awesome as well, definitely worth the extra money.
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Old 05-16-2017, 10:33 AM   #27
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Old 05-16-2017, 04:16 PM   #28
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After all the fuss, I decided to keep the rifle. Over the weekend I was able to get to the range and put a few rounds though it. I had zero malfunctions and the tail on the carrier is staying put. The sights were spot on and there is no cant. I only shot at 50 yards so that isn't long range by far.

After looking at pictures of Rob Ski's carrier, I have come to the conclusion it was a cast part. It for sure was a hand selected cast part as the casting appears to be excellent. My new cast carrier is heads and tails a better casting than the one which came with my 1st kit. That one appeared of poor quality as seen in the pictures. As I've stated before, my big hang up with the cast carrier was.... it wasn't what I thought I ordered. The Century AK63D I have has a cast carrier, no problems with it.

PSA definitely attempts to make these rifles with tight tolerances.

The finish on this rifle is very nice, I like the way the rifle is painted/coated or what not.

- Gas Tube: was a challenge to get off, but I'd rather have it a little tight than loose.
- Front sight/block: Mine was straight and pinned properly. The muzzle device retainer is a little loose in its cavity, but stays put. It holds the muzzle brake effectively.
- Front Gas block: Not chrome lined, but of good quality. Looks to be a cast piece, may be a milled piece, but I doubt it.
- Hang guard retainer: Mine was a little on the loose side with hand guard removed. Once the hand guard is installed it has about the right stiffness to it.
- Hand guard retainer notch: There was only one notch cut into the barrel, I know some others had 2 notches.
- Barrel: Barrel is not chrome lined or hammer Forged , it is 4150 nitride treated. The threads on the barrel end are clean and smooth.
- Rear sight block: Not much to say here it looks nice, straight and functions.
- Receiver: The Front Trunnion is made of billet, seems properly installed the rivets look appropriately installed. All the others rivets look good with exception of the ones on the rear, which seem to be less "riveted" than the rest, though I've seen other "quality" rifles which have the same rear rivet appearance. (not talking about CIA) The welds on the receiver look to be less significant in appearance than the ones on my VEPR, for sure, time will tell how they hold.
Dust cover fits snug, it is still a little difficult to get off, not too bad. There is no wiggle once it is on.

Anyway..... just wanted to give you an idea of how mine turned out so far. I will have to see how it continues to function. One thing I will say is that the regular plastic buttstock i got with mu builders kit did need some filing to fit properly. It was very tight and wouldn't seat all the way to the rear of the receiver.

It grouped 1.5" at 50yds with the crummy AK open sights. This was from a bench, resting on the magazine and with a Arsenal 2 stage trigger from my VEPR.
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Old 05-16-2017, 04:25 PM   #29
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Would I buy it again? Probably not, unless there is much better QC. Recently I seen PSA selling kits $530 shipped with a Forged Carrier and $500 shipped with a Cast. While that seems like a deal, if each rifle has the problems this one did, it insn't worth it and a WASR isn't too much more, if you don't mind the lower quality appearance, though the parts are of better quality (Barrel, Trunnion, BCG, Bolt)

I'd consider another one IF: QC improves. They use Hammer forged barrels with a chrome lined barrel and chamber, Forged carrier and chromed forged bolt. Would be nice to have a chromed gas block, even could take it up a notch with an interior chromed gas tube. With the exception of the barrel, If the parts are QPQ or nitride coated appropriately, I don't know if this would be an issue other than with the use of corrosive ammo, which seems to be far and few between these days.
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Old 05-16-2017, 09:11 PM   #30
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i will be packing my barreled receiver, i want the forged bolt carrier, we'll see waht happenes in a month. Sad thing is i havent assembled it or taken it shooting; I've had it since January.
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Old 05-16-2017, 10:18 PM   #31
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i will be packing my barreled receiver, i want the forged bolt carrier, we'll see waht happenes in a month. Sad thing is i havent assembled it or taken it shooting; I've had it since January.
I'm guessing you are returning it to buy the liberty kit. I'm just going to enjoy mine for now and report how it is holding up. May take me years to put 5000 rounds on it due to the having a few others.
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Old 05-17-2017, 12:23 AM   #32
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I'm guessing you are returning it to buy the liberty kit. I'm just going to enjoy mine for now and report how it is holding up. May take me years to put 5000 rounds on it due to the having a few others.
returning it for the carrier upgrade, i bought mine before they had the liberty kits, the cast carrier i got with the kit looks pourous as yours did, im looking to get the forged carrier upgrade.
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Old 05-17-2017, 01:31 AM   #33
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returning it for the carrier upgrade, i bought mine before they had the liberty kits, the cast carrier i got with the kit looks pourous as yours did, im looking to get the forged carrier upgrade.
Good they are going to exchange yours,when I bought mine I just read freedom GB2, GB2 is where I got confused. I'm hoping mine won't give any troubles, going to the range again tomorrow.
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Old 07-12-2017, 07:54 PM   #34
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Quick question for anyone that may know.
I noticed that PSA specified saying the front trunnion and bolt are billet.
My question is, what is the rear trunnion/block?
Is it also billet?

I've searched everywhere to get an answer, but cannot find anything at all regarding this.
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Old 07-12-2017, 11:39 PM   #35
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Quick question for anyone that may know.
I noticed that PSA specified saying the front trunnion and bolt are billet.
My question is, what is the rear trunnion/block?
Is it also billet?

I've searched everywhere to get an answer, but cannot find anything at all regarding this.
The rear on mine seems to be billet or at least a machined part. If I didn't have the initial problems, I would highly recommended this rifle at the price of $650 or less. Probably the best paint/finish of all my AKs.
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