July 22, 2011
By George Spafford
George Spafford is building a replica of the Yugo M70B rifle using a stub parts kit. A new installment will appear here every Friday
Two M70 milled stubs purchased from Centerfire Systems. Both showed
considerable wear but were in pretty good shape all things considered.
It definitely pays off to research where to buy your parts. As luck would have it, a year back or so, Centerfire Systems (www.centerfiresystems.com) obtained some milled M70 replacement parts kits that included everything for $120, including the hard-to-find fixed buttstocks. Given the cost of parts, I was quick to buy two sets. That gave me everything I needed to build on a sheet-metal receiver except for the necessary trunnions.
To explain, in a sheet-metal AK, the trunnions are the forged high-strength parts that hold the barrel and rear stock. They handle the stresses in what would otherwise be a relatively weak sheet-metal receiver. In fact, the stamped AK receiver is more or less just the means to hold all the parts in the correct positions. In contrast, a milled receiver doesn't need trunnions because their functions are integral to the forged and milled receiver.
This is a close up of the scrap receiver "stub" that is shipped with the barrel
assembly. We will fabricate a front trunnion from this scrap metal.
Here's the first opportunity — the front stubs typically have enough material to fabricate a flat AKM-style front trunnion from the scrap receiver stub. As luck would have it, Apex (www.apexgunparts.com) found some M70 milled front stubs that included the receiver stub, barrel assembly, bolt carrier, bolt, top cover and recoil spring assembly.
I purchased two of each kit and could rummage through the combined Centerfire M70 milled kit with the M70 stub from Apex. As I cleaned up items, refinished and measured over the course of the project I was able to cherry-pick and select the best parts for my build with one exception - none of the kits I had included any rear stubs.