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Old 10-12-2017, 04:45 PM   #1
crotalus
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Default DDI74 fixed, what I found out...updated 10/23

A while back I was having a really hard time getting any help from PSA/DDI for warranty work on my rifle. I didn't have 1k rounds out of it and the barrel started coming apart. I decided to go with someone local to work/repair it since I am not sure what tomorrow can bring in regards to my health. Lee Armory isn't too far from the VA hospital/airport so stopping in there wasn't big deal.




Ended up though running into problems with the trunnion. The American made barrels would not fit it, including the oversized barrel. Lee Armory tried to order a custom/one-off barrel but couldn't find anyone who could build one. The oversized barrel could slide easily in and out of the trunnion and the DDI original would not. To me it looked like someone reamed the trunnion wider and took all the marks off. The other problem was that the rivets were not counter-sunk/done poorly. I was told that this was a sign of sloppy work.




Before:




After:




Lee Armory went out of their way to help me with finding parts to repair the rifle, fixing all the little problems, etc. I got calls, pictures, whenever anything came up and they always kept me in the loop with what was wrong with the rifle. The guys at Lee hooked me up with a Bulgarian barrel and a new trunnion at a very, very low cost. While it was very frustrating to find out these problems I'm glad I have a solid rifle now. I don't know if this is why PSA never called or helped. And I don't know if DDI was doing this with all their rifles but I don't think it would be worth the risk buying a [used] DDI if the problems are unknown. I can say Lee hooked me up though.


Last edited by crotalus; 10-23-2017 at 03:49 PM.
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Old 10-12-2017, 07:10 PM   #2
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Glad it worked out well for you! Seems like people either love or hate Lee Armory. I've never had an dealing with them, but glad they got your rifle back the way it should be.
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Old 10-12-2017, 07:21 PM   #3
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That settles it for me. DDI is junk
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Old 10-12-2017, 07:49 PM   #4
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So why was the breach face messed up ??

I still don't see a answer to the original problem??

I'm wondering if your original trunion was phosfated to long causing the oversized condition at one point?

I seriously doubt DDI made a one off barrel for your mileage spec trunion that's oversize.
I'm not saying it's not oversize but why?

Again what caused the odd wear on the breach face ??
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Old 10-12-2017, 07:50 PM   #5
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BTW glad you got good help at a good price and got this fixed.
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:39 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1biggun View Post
So why was the breach face messed up ??

I still don't see a answer to the original problem??

I'm wondering if your original trunion was phosfated to long causing the oversized condition at one point?

I seriously doubt DDI made a one off barrel for your mileage spec trunion that's oversize.
I'm not saying it's not oversize but why?

Again what caused the odd wear on the breach face ??
It could be who ever made them, was able to make them to the spec of the trunnion. Anyone that Lee Armory contacted couldn't do it. I think it's a barrel that is soft vs the harder bolt. I have a picture of a barrel with similar damage that was put on a FB Radom forum but it's all in Polish.

Mel64D agreed to do the hardness testing and to measure the trunnion. Hopefully he can find something out that can explain what happened.
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:44 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DOS AK's View Post
Glad it worked out well for you! Seems like people either love or the Lee Armory. I've never had an dealing with them, but glad they got your rifle back the way it should be.
Thanks. This was my first time dealing with them. From what I saw everything was dress right dress, in order etc. I was told they were using rivets that Definitive Arms made (I think they're close to Russian). I don't know if that is a big deal or not but thought it was cool. Can't say they have bad customer service and the Bulgarian barrel was icing on the cake.

The only big mistake they made was not engraving "Don't Do It" into the side LOL
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Old 10-12-2017, 09:19 PM   #8
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If the barrel was nitrided it should be pretty damn hard on the surface.

I recall studying the bolt and it's contact a lot when you posted those pics.

I can't think of any reason to enlarge the trunion bore on purpose and to the make a bigger barrel for them except to maybe make all the trunions uniform so a single barrel dimension fits.
Nobody does that.

I have hears of people leaving parts in the phosfate bath to long and have parts not fit after. Was a thread on Gunco years ago about it.

Any one with a proper blank and reamer can make a barrel.
Your trunion us still usable.
If it were mine I'd have used it in a 223 build for example .

Will be interesting to see what Mel finds.
I'd be looking close at case protrusion as well .

Again glad you got good service and we're able to promote Lee Armory. Sounds like they deserve it.
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Old 10-12-2017, 10:05 PM   #9
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http://i.imgur.com/shmOVm6.jpg

http://forum-bron.pl/viewtopic.php?t=158934

check this out 1biggun, i can't read Polish but that's where i found that image
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Old 10-12-2017, 10:39 PM   #10
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Was this a waffen DDI? Or a DDI marked receiver kit build?
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Old 10-13-2017, 06:50 AM   #11
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DDI 74, when David Fillers was talking about them on here he said he got all the kits from classic. Something about nothing wrong with them and they were built to same standards and quality as their 47's.

Last edited by crotalus; 10-13-2017 at 08:28 AM.
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Old 10-13-2017, 08:47 AM   #12
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Crotalus in the first post where you said barrel started coming apart, do you mean loose in the front trunnion or ?

I've only got about 500 through my DDI AK74, and want to know what to watch for. No problems yet.
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Old 10-13-2017, 09:04 AM   #13
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hey Medcpt,

The front trunnion and the barrel weren't loose they were tight. The barrel was losing parts of the metal as though it was chipping parts off or knock pieces off. What I don't know is how minor or serious it would be to have rivets that were not countersunk. I'm new to AK's compared to everything else so I'm still learning at this point.
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Old 10-13-2017, 05:05 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crotalus View Post
Thanks. This was my first time dealing with them. From what I saw everything was dress right dress, in order etc. I was told they were using rivets that Definitive Arms made (I think they're close to Russian). I don't know if that is a big deal or not but thought it was cool. Can't say they have bad customer service and the Bulgarian barrel was icing on the cake.

The only big mistake they made was not engraving "Don't Do It" into the side LOL
Close =). It was a partnership on the DLA-AK Rivets. Team work ! =).

Thanks guys for all of the feedback. Have a great weekend!
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Old 10-14-2017, 02:24 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crotalus View Post
...
What I don't know is how minor or serious it would be to have rivets that were not countersunk.

...
I will say this:

I tried a few AK74s made with Bulgarian parts kits on US made receivers where the rivets were not properly countersunk (cough, JRA .. cough, DDI), and the rivets walked out on me after 1,500 rounds or so, to the point where the dust cover popped off while live firing, or the bolt carrier clearance caused various FTFs and FTEs due to the carrier wobbling in the rails worse than my 91 year old mother in law's aged titanium knees.

Whew!

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Old 10-23-2017, 03:43 PM   #16
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Update:

I got everything back from Mel64D. He did the hardness testing and did the measurements for me.

From Mel:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mel64D

Barrel was fine at: 27Rc (comm-block @ 22-32Rc)

Trunnion was fine at: 39.33Rc (comm-block @ 38-43Rc)

Barrel is a solid 0.906" all around.

Trunnion is egged and tapered. Was getting 0.9058", 0.9064", 0.907", and 0.9086
The rifle's headspace was correct so I was expecting the barrel to be softer. Mel also mentioned that he might think the barrel was "over clocked." I don't know if the egged and tapered trunnion would mean that the barrel was not in at 90* or was not in correctly. At this point I don't think it's possible to know 100% because all I could do was get the parts pulled and replaced.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mel64D
Guess DDI used a 23mm front trunnion and turned down a 23mm barrel blank then. So now your rifle is correct with a 22mm trunnion and barrel. So Lee Armory did you good.

The rivets should be dimpled yes, but the rifle will still function without them being so. Without the dimples and a shit ton of rounds later, it may start to shear the rivets.
This, plus what Ovalnut and others have said about what can happen with improper rivet work and now having the correct size trunnion and barrel I feel a lot better about the rifle. And I can definitely say I learned a lot that I didn't know before.

If anyone can translate any information from the link in post #9 I would appreciate it. The damage seems very similar and is from FB Radom but I cannot read Polish. I would like to see if there are is anything there that could provide answers as to how this happened.

Last edited by crotalus; 10-23-2017 at 03:57 PM.
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Old 10-23-2017, 04:25 PM   #17
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well i am glad you got it worked out. Congrats on a sweet rifle with a correct barrel.

get yourself some decent mags, 7N6 and you are good to go!
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Old 10-23-2017, 06:44 PM   #18
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Pretty cool of Mel to do that for you.

I suspect the trunions get tweaked a little when the barrel is pressed. There thin in some areas and thick in others and pressed a barrel in means some thing has move or compress a little. It's also possable the warp slightly from tempering after machining. Then you got a barrel pin running through it with about 8000 pounds of thrust on it and the lugs pulling it the other then the parts sees forces from the demilling and instalation.
There hard but they see some heavy forces in construction ,ttempering and use

I have bored a few bigger for heavier barrels or to thread and I noted they were not perfectly round.

If the cut was not clocked right it could have been part of the issue.
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Old 10-23-2017, 08:00 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by voron View Post
well i am glad you got it worked out. Congrats on a sweet rifle with ca correct barrel.

get yourself some decent mags, 7N6 and you are good to go!
thanks dude I'm pretty happy with the CHF barrel for sure. I have some 7n6 still but not enough. I'm on the hunt for some 45's

Quote:
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I have bored a few bigger for heavier barrels or to thread and I noted they were not perfectly round.

If the cut was not clocked right it could have been part of the issue.
Could you explain how clocking the barrel works? I'm new to AK's when it comes to why things are done a certain way and what they mean. If you would like to see the parts let me know. I saw your discussion on 223 caliber's using 23mm trunnions and I've been trying to build a beryl clone for my Brother.
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Old 10-23-2017, 09:09 PM   #20
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So is the breech been altered? Are these the same extractor issues or different rifle?
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Old 10-23-2017, 09:16 PM   #21
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Glad the crew @ Lee Armory got you all fixed up !!
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Old 10-23-2017, 09:45 PM   #22
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Quote:
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So is the breech been altered? Are these the same extractor issues or different rifle?
I didn't do any modifications other than change out the trigger to an ALG AKT that I polished up. It's the same rifle and my only 5.45

Last edited by crotalus; 10-23-2017 at 10:14 PM.
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Old 10-29-2017, 08:24 AM   #23
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Here's the inside shot of my DDI AK74. Estimate about 500 rounds. Don't see anything overtly abnormal on mine like in your photos. Where the red arrow is pointing very small barely noticeable area, but again nothing really to see here.

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Old 10-29-2017, 01:37 PM   #24
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I'm hoping someone with more experience will chime in. I don't want to say something and be wrong.
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