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Chop, Crown, and Rethread a Saiga 12 barrel.... with no lathe

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  • 5 weeks later...

I have done a chop and perm at 13.5". A Genuine Russian MOLOT GK-01 was used to achieve non-NFA length. I moved the gas block back 2.25" and used 4 ports at .078". It ran Winchester Universal reliably in SGM 12 round mags. I never tried MD-20s with it because it has a magwell, but I think it would do fine. If leaving the gas system in the factory location, you will likely need to run 5 or 6 ports at .078", or a fewer ports at a larger diameter. The gas block and puck will stay cleaner with small ports angled slightly more that the factory ports, but small ports get clogged easier than large ports. The gas block and puck will foul quicker with larger ports, but larger ports do not clog as easily as small ports. Pick your poison....



Edited by evlblkwpnz
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  • 6 months later...

"How important is it to have an adjustable tap?"

My tap is not adjustable, so i say, not important.


"Why remove the threads at the crown? Why can't you just do the half an inch of threads and call it a day?"

It depends on your muzzle brake. Some you wont need to cut the threads off, the Polychoke you will be required for it to fit properly.


I would not recommend using a pipe cutter, just use a new sharp hacksaw blade. The file the muzzle/crown flat, if you use a grinder, i would still file it smooth.

A burr on the inside of the muzzle will make it harder to insert the TAT. To remove it wrap some light grit wet sandpaper around a 12ga barrel mop, then chuck it in a hand drill. It will remove the burr quickly and evenly. DO NOT USE A HAND FILE, it will be slower and not even, and will leave scratches on the inside of the muzzle.


Im not sure if i agree with going crazy with cutting oil, lube it and cut it few threads, then do it again. Just keep the threads lubed, you dont need to use a whole bottle of oil. The amount of oil will not make a difference in the quality of the cut, as long as your die is sharp it will cut good.

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  • 5 weeks later...
  • 2 years later...

I want to thank Evl for this tutorial.  Last year my state repealed its ban on SBS so I have several projects in process.  One is a 12" S-12.  I've tweaked the gas ports to get it running reliably and am now in the process of dressing up the rest of the gun.  One task was the threading of the now shorter barrel.  Once I got by a bit of an issue (explained below) the process when smoothly and I have a threaded section that will accept my attachments.  So thanks again Evl.




One heads up for anyone attempting this.  Not sure if this has been covered before but I thought I would toss it out.  When I started threading it was not going well.  As soon as the die would start to cut threads it would break off and quit cutting the thread.  I did this multiple times and was starting to get a bit frustrated as I've cut threads on pipe and rods in other situations many times over the years and not had that problem.   Then I discovered the problem.  I was using one of the thread alignment tools with the die to keep it centered with the bore as you started the cutting the process.  The problem was that the bore was not centered relative to the outside diameter of the barrel.   The wall on one side was much thicker than 180 degrees to the other side.  The alignment tool was causing the die to cut deep on the thick side and then let go on the other side because the wall was much thinner.  Luckily I hadn't gotten too far into the barrel when I discovered this.  I ditched the alignment tool and just carefully worked the die on the barrel.  The threading when smoothly from there.  I just did as Evl suggested and made sure I cleaned up the chips and added cutting oil frequently.

Edited by yamadog35
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  • 1 year later...

so I am sorry but If I don't want to move gas system I can cut to 12 inches For someone who wants to do an SBS without moving the gas block back....
19 3/16" - 12" = 7 3/16" (to be removed)         If I have to I will move gas system but I would rather not I live in Indiana  so SBS is ok with stamp


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  • 5 years later...

I know this is an older post, but still relevant. I learned a couple really important things from this post that helped me to successfully thread my izmash saiga 12 for a comp. First most important thing is just like another commenter my barrel was not centered with the bore. The bore was cut off center. If I hadn’t read this, and used a bore guide, it wouldn’t have worked. So I had to just eye ball the level, and do my best. It worked great. But check bore first before buying the guide. I also didn’t use an adjustable die. I found the right die and wrench on amazon for very cheap. Didn’t need adjustment. 
also remember to measure your actual thread length inside muzzle device. My MGW saber boss had 1” of threads and also needed a 1/8” section at the muzzle threads removed. 
I just took my time. The whole section of thread area was sanded down first with dremel to remove the finish and reduce diameter a bit. Then careful threading while breaking and reversing and cleaning and lubrication regularly. 
it turned out great. But definitely a lot of adjusting and testing device threading to ensure good fit. 

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