ISSUE #1 (SLINGING IT): When I was picking this weapon up at my FFL's, the dealer was very impressed by it, but told me to go ahead and get some decent sling swivels. I took a look and quickly agreed with him. The swivels on this thing are the basic Russian stuff, the same that you would find on sporter Saigas. The only slings that fit it are the SKS and Mosin ones, and maybe some basic, thin, nylon stuff. This is what the swivels look like (with a cheap Chinese SKS sling):
Attempted solution: I went to my favorite sports outfitter store (bringing the rifle in and causing a great deal of interest from the staff and other customers), picked up a gorgeous brown leather sling, which color-matched the stock and asked them to hook me up with the best pair of swivels they had. They grabbed a nice, expensive set of swivels and took me back to their "gunsmith room" to see if they would work. The guy unscrewed the original swivel screws and removed the Russian swivels. It quickly became apparent that this is not going to be a quick remove and replace job. The Russian screws and the tapped holes in the wood are A LOT thinner than any of the American screws that come with decent swivels. The guy said: "I can't do it for you here, because we can get sued if I damage something, but why don't you just try for force these thick swivel screws in there." These things looked like this:
I thought about it and then decided that, before I do something like that, making permanent alterations and risk cracking the beautiful, irreplaceable stock, I shall research my options. So, no nice leather sling for me, at least for now. I put a Chinese SKS sling on the stock swivels. It really does cheapen the look of such a nice rifle though.
Question: What is the best, safest way to go about putting some quality, US-style sling swivels on these things? Are these swivel screws all about the same thickness, or do they have thinner ones? I would appreciate any input on this.
ISSUE #2 (THE SCOPE IS TOO DAMN HIGH!): I have the (original) top mount version of the weapon and went with a weaver version of a POSP Zoom scope. This is what it looks like:
Even though the weaver mount sits very low, the base of the scope is rather tall, preventing any kind of cheek weld (chin weld is good though ). I could've gone with a basic tube scope and some low rings, but I am just so damn used to the POSPs with their SVD style reticles! Any way, considering how high the rail sits on the side rail versions of the weapon, this should be even more of a problem for all you guys with those Supers. Of course, proper cheek weld has never been been a big concern for the Russians and their weapon design reflects that. It is not a HUGE deals to me, but I would like to at least try to remedy the problem.
Attempted Solution: I went ahead and ordered a "BlackHaw Adjustable HawkTex Tactical Cheek Pad". Should receive it later this week. I will let you guys know how it works out.
Question: Can anyone think of a better solution?
ISSUE #3 (TOP MOUNT DESIGN): This one obviously only applies to the top mount version of Vepr Super.Here's the deal: In a typical Russian fashion, the mount in designed for quick mounting and release, and to maintain zero after you remove and put it back on. That last part is essential, because there is NO WAY to field-strip the weapon with that mount on it. Mounting is easy enough: you raise the locking lever to its highest position, slide the mount on the receiver and rear sight block rails, and lower the locking lever until its sits snugly next to your barrel and touches the stock. It's all very easy and great, UNLESS you have a fairly large scope. In such a case, the scope objective housing prevents you from raising the locking lever all the way up. Trying to force and bend the lever around the scope doesn't work and does this (note the nasty scratch on the scope):
You can still secure the mount in place, but you have to fuck with the hand screw, carefully manipulate the locking mechanism in place, etc. Removing the mount is just as cumbersome and you WILL LOSE YOUR ZERO taking off an putting the mount back on this way.
My brilliant, ingenious, elegant solution (sarcasm): Notice here, how the mount's locking lever is bent inward (to ensure that when you lock it, it sits out of the way, snuggly next to the barrel):
This inward bend is what causes it to catch on big scope objective housing. So, I took the locking lever off the mount, put it on a hard table and smacked the shit out of it with a mallet, until it was no longer bent. The damage to the finish was very minimal and now the lever (mostly) clears my scope objective when in the upward position, allowing for quick attach, release and keeping zero. However, this DIY mod has created another issue: When the lever is in the down (locked) position, it really sticks out away from the weapon, a few mm longer than the charging handle. It looks like this:
This is obviously not ideal, since the locking lever can poke you, catch on things, etc.
My planned solution: I am going to take off the locking lever once again and use a dremel with a cut-off wheel to chop off that bent tip, as it seems to be completely unnecessary and removing it will make the locking lever stick out by 1/2" less. I hate doing shit like this to a $170 piece of gear, but it seems like the obvious answer.
Question: What do you guys think about my solution to the problem of the mount locking lever not clearing the scope objective housing and what I am planning to do about it sticking out too much right now? Does anyone have more elegant solutions? Thoughts? Suggestions? Critique?
ISSUE #4 (I WANT A CRAPPY PLASTIC STOCK FOR THIS THING): The wood on these weapons is really nice and pretty. I would like to keep it this way on mine, but still be able to take the weapon deer/elk hunting in the mountains.
Solution: Let's keep nagging Tapco, ATI... whoever, about making plastic replacement stocks for these weapons, like they do for SKS', Mosins, etc.
Question: Am I the only one who wants this?
ISSUE #5 (PARTS and ACCESSORIES AVAILABILITY)
Solution: Let's keep nagging WPA, K-Var, etc about importing spare parts and asking some of our forum sponsors (who specialize in manufacturing Saiga accessories) to start making some cool stuff for these lovely rifles.
Question: What kind US made accessories would you like to see for Vepr Supers?
Any way, thanks for reading this rather long post, guys.
Edited by SpetsnazGRU, 07 May 2012 - 06:13 PM.