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Not cycling high brass, help a newbie out?


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#1 philosojester

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 11:49 PM

First of all I would like to say it's great that there is a knowledgeable community based around this gun. If it wasn't for this community, I don't think I would have taken a chance on buying one of these wonderful shotguns.

Now, on to business. Though it may be too early to tell, I think I may have a vodka special. But I might as well start at the beginning. I have a brand new Saiga 109 A, imported and converted by legion. The serial number indicates that it was made in 2011. First thing I did was take it apart, clean it, and lube it with hoppes elite. When I was cleaning the gas tube I took a look at my ports, and as best as I can tell I have 3, but I couldn't really see very well up there and I don't have a press to take of the gas block.

Took it out today, and using the factory 5 round mag, I tried to fire it on setting 1 with some Remmington 000 buck. I leaned into it hard and experienced 5 consecutive FTEs. I changed the regulator to 2 and tried out some Winchester target loads and got the same results, but that was entirely expected, I only brought those along to test if the gun was over gassed.

I've been lurking on this board for some time now trying to decide if I wanted to buy a Saiga 12, but I have yet to see someone complain about their gun not even shooting high brass. I've heard of there being a break in period, but do I really need to fire a couple hundred slugs all manually cycled? I plan on poking around the ports with a pick to see if maybe a port got plugged when I cleaned the gas tube. But other than that I don't really know what to do. Any tips?

Other miscellaneous tidbits which may or may not be relevant; Factory plug, Tapco puck (came converted so factory puck is gone), Tapco trigger group and pistol grip, Tapco stock, 19" threaded bbl, factory handguard. Cleaned bbl with 12 ga. boresnake, cleaned gas tube with 20 ga. brush and about 25 patches (it was dirty as hell). Used birchwood casey gun scrubber, and hoppes elite gun oil.

I am not a kitchen gunsmith, I lack the tools and knowledge necessary to to be comfortable cutting, hammering, drilling, or otherwise mangling the internals of a firearm.

This all may be a bit premature, seeing as I have put (or failed to put) 10 rounds through it, but a 100% failure rate across two different loads/manufacturers is worrying nonetheless. I've heard that hand cycling it can help, but if it can't even cycle high brass how many hundreds of times would I need to hand cycle it in order to break it in?
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#2 King of the Hill

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 12:44 AM

I am going to let more experienced guys help you out, but I will note that you do want to make sure that your gas block is completely dry and free of solvents or oil when you go to shoot it. Good luck
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#3 philosojester

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 01:41 AM

I am going to let more experienced guys help you out, but I will note that you do want to make sure that your gas block is completely dry and free of solvents or oil when you go to shoot it. Good luck


Well that could be the problem, I did oil the puck.
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#4 evlblkwpnz

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 07:09 AM

First of all I would like to say it's great that there is a knowledgeable community based around this gun. If it wasn't for this community, I don't think I would have taken a chance on buying one of these wonderful shotguns.
Welcome aboard. Saiga 12s are my favorite weapons, bar none.... even my VEPR 12s Posted Image

Now, on to business. Though it may be too early to tell, I think I may have a vodka special. But I might as well start at the beginning. I have a brand new Saiga 109 A, imported and converted by legion. The serial number indicates that it was made in 2011. First thing I did was take it apart, clean it, and lube it with hoppes elite. When I was cleaning the gas tube I took a look at my ports, and as best as I can tell I have 3, but I couldn't really see very well up there and I don't have a press to take of the gas block.
Don't believe that "need a press" bullshit.

Took it out today, and using the factory 5 round mag, I tried to fire it on setting 1 with some Remmington 000 buck. I leaned into it hard and experienced 5 consecutive FTEs. I changed the regulator to 2 and tried out some Winchester target loads and got the same results, but that was entirely expected, I only brought those along to test if the gun was over gassed.
Don't worry about "over gassed". I have owned 8 S12s and none were ever over gassed from the factory. The "over gassed" talk is fear mongering and a ploy to confuse people about what it takes to get these weapons to run "low brass". 4 ports at .093" is as large as I recommend going and will yield extreme reliability if all else is done right. Depending on your reliability expectations, you can run less or smaller ports and get decent reliability without having to use weaker aftermarket springs which limit your ability to safely fire 3" magnum loads, etc.. Re-profiling is beneficial, but is not the "end all, be all" silver bullet for making these weapons reliable. I employ friction reduction on my own weapons, but I do it more as an effort to reduce perceived recoil and improve the shooter's experience, but it does improve reliability to some degree. The indisputable fact is that these gas operated weapons were originally designed to fire buck and slugs, not cheap bulk bird shot. The port surface area was geared toward being adequate for strong loads, not cheap bulk birdshot.

I've been lurking on this board for some time now trying to decide if I wanted to buy a Saiga 12, but I have yet to see someone complain about their gun not even shooting high brass. I've heard of there being a break in period, but do I really need to fire a couple hundred slugs all manually cycled? I plan on poking around the ports with a pick to see if maybe a port got plugged when I cleaned the gas tube. But other than that I don't really know what to do. Any tips?
The benefits of "break in" are very minor. You may as well just violently hand cycle the weapon for 15 minutes or so. It will do about the same thing as shooting a couple hundred rounds of "high brass".... next to nothing. Check the ports and let us know what you have.

Other miscellaneous tidbits which may or may not be relevant; Factory plug, Tapco puck (came converted so factory puck is gone), Tapco trigger group and pistol grip, Tapco stock, 19" threaded bbl, factory handguard. Cleaned bbl with 12 ga. boresnake, cleaned gas tube with 20 ga. brush and about 25 patches (it was dirty as hell). Used birchwood casey gun scrubber, and hoppes elite gun oil.
Does the Tapco puck move freely? You might try the CSS puck or a factory puck.

I am not a kitchen gunsmith, I lack the tools and knowledge necessary to to be comfortable cutting, hammering, drilling, or otherwise mangling the internals of a firearm.
I love it. We are going to enjoy having you.

This all may be a bit premature, seeing as I have put (or failed to put) 10 rounds through it, but a 100% failure rate across two different loads/manufacturers is worrying nonetheless. I've heard that hand cycling it can help, but if it can't even cycle high brass how many hundreds of times would I need to hand cycle it in order to break it in?
Hand cycle it as long as it takes for you to realize that is not a substitute for gunsmithing and basically a waste of time. Run as much high brass as it takes for you to realize that it is not a substutute for gunsmithing and basically a waste of money.

I am going to let more experienced guys help you out, but I will note that you do want to make sure that your gas block is completely dry and free of solvents or oil when you go to shoot it. Good luck
+1 Never lube the interior of the gas block or the puck. Also, never lube the front of the bolt (breech face) and never lube the chamber or bore. A quick blast of break cleaner from the gas tube and chamber, with the barrel pointed down will likely remove most lube from the barrel and gas block. Use your best judgement. Do not use carb cleaner.


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#5 Big John!

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 07:30 AM


First of all I would like to say it's great that there is a knowledgeable community based around this gun. If it wasn't for this community, I don't think I would have taken a chance on buying one of these wonderful shotguns.
Welcome aboard. Saiga 12s are my favorite weapons, bar none.... even my VEPR 12s Posted Image

Now, on to business. Though it may be too early to tell, I think I may have a vodka special. But I might as well start at the beginning. I have a brand new Saiga 109 A, imported and converted by legion. The serial number indicates that it was made in 2011. First thing I did was take it apart, clean it, and lube it with hoppes elite. When I was cleaning the gas tube I took a look at my ports, and as best as I can tell I have 3, but I couldn't really see very well up there and I don't have a press to take of the gas block.
Don't believe that "need a press" bullshit.

Took it out today, and using the factory 5 round mag, I tried to fire it on setting 1 with some Remmington 000 buck. I leaned into it hard and experienced 5 consecutive FTEs. I changed the regulator to 2 and tried out some Winchester target loads and got the same results, but that was entirely expected, I only brought those along to test if the gun was over gassed.
Don't worry about "over gassed". I have owned 8 S12s and none were ever over gassed from the factory. The "over gassed" talk is fear mongering and a ploy to confuse people about what it takes to get these weapons to run "low brass". 4 ports at .093" is as large as I recommend going and will yield extreme reliability if all else is done right. Depending on your reliability expectations, you can run less or smaller ports and get decent reliability without having to use weaker aftermarket springs which limit your ability to safely fire 3" magnum loads, etc.. Re-profiling is beneficial, but is not the "end all, be all" silver bullet for making these weapons reliable. I employ friction reduction on my own weapons, but I do it more as an effort to reduce perceived recoil and improve the shooter's experience, but it does improve reliability to some degree. The indisputable fact is that these gas operated weapons were originally designed to fire buck and slugs, not cheap bulk bird shot. The port surface area was geared toward being adequate for strong loads, not cheap bulk birdshot.

I've been lurking on this board for some time now trying to decide if I wanted to buy a Saiga 12, but I have yet to see someone complain about their gun not even shooting high brass. I've heard of there being a break in period, but do I really need to fire a couple hundred slugs all manually cycled? I plan on poking around the ports with a pick to see if maybe a port got plugged when I cleaned the gas tube. But other than that I don't really know what to do. Any tips?
The benefits of "break in" are very minor. You may as well just violently hand cycle the weapon for 15 minutes or so. It will do about the same thing as shooting a couple hundred rounds of "high brass".... next to nothing. Check the ports and let us know what you have.

Other miscellaneous tidbits which may or may not be relevant; Factory plug, Tapco puck (came converted so factory puck is gone), Tapco trigger group and pistol grip, Tapco stock, 19" threaded bbl, factory handguard. Cleaned bbl with 12 ga. boresnake, cleaned gas tube with 20 ga. brush and about 25 patches (it was dirty as hell). Used birchwood casey gun scrubber, and hoppes elite gun oil.
Does the Tapco puck move freely? You might try the CSS puck or a factory puck.

I am not a kitchen gunsmith, I lack the tools and knowledge necessary to to be comfortable cutting, hammering, drilling, or otherwise mangling the internals of a firearm.
I love it. We are going to enjoy having you.

This all may be a bit premature, seeing as I have put (or failed to put) 10 rounds through it, but a 100% failure rate across two different loads/manufacturers is worrying nonetheless. I've heard that hand cycling it can help, but if it can't even cycle high brass how many hundreds of times would I need to hand cycle it in order to break it in?
Hand cycle it as long as it takes for you to realize that is not a substitute for gunsmithing and basically a waste of time. Run as much high brass as it takes for you to realize that it is not a substutute for gunsmithing and basically a waste of money.

I am going to let more experienced guys help you out, but I will note that you do want to make sure that your gas block is completely dry and free of solvents or oil when you go to shoot it. Good luck
+1 Never lube the interior of the gas block or the puck. Also, never lube the front of the bolt (breech face) and never lube the chamber or bore. A quick blast of break cleaner from the gas tube and chamber, with the barrel pointed down will likely remove most lube from the barrel and gas block. Use your best judgement. Do not use carb cleaner.

Great info. I put a very slight amount of oil on my puck and had the worst day out ever. I figured any metal to metal contact would need at least a little lube. I'm guessing all I did was add to the gumming up of the puck now that I think about it.
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#6 evlblkwpnz

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 07:51 AM

I tried oiling the puck one time, just to see what the effects were. Mine ran fine, but cleaning it sucked.

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#7 utahhandyman

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 07:58 AM

Back the plug out 1 revolution , clean the piston and try again. If it fails again, send it back to legion, they converted it and I'm guessing you paid close to 1000. Make them fix it.

Edited by utahhandyman, 22 November 2012 - 08:24 AM.

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#8 philosojester

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 11:10 AM

Thanks, guys. That is some great info. I'll make sure I clean out my gas block and puck before my next outing as well as use a paperclip to make sure my Ports are clear.

To answer your question, evlblkwpns, the Tapco puck seems to move freely.

I should preface this by saying that I am not normally a shotgun kind of guy, I usually prefer pistols so I am kind of new to shotguns in general. I didn't mention this earlier because it's subjective and a bit embarrassing, but after 5 round of 000 buck I didn't want to shoot anymore and today my shoulder is tender and feels loose in it's socket. Is this the normal perceived recoil for 000? Or could it be that the recoil is being mitigated less by the mechanism than normal? I noticed that the next round wasn't being caught by the bolt and that sometimes the empty shell hadn't even completely left the bbl after firing. This means that it is short stroking, right? Is this the usual cause of FTEs due to under gassing? Please don't crucify me for my ignorance, I am new to all this and I may be confusing terms.

Edited by philosojester, 20 November 2012 - 07:04 PM.

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#9 Nephilim7

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:28 AM

I should preface this by saying that I am not normally a shotgun kind of guy, I usually prefer pistols so I am kind of new to shotguns in general. I didn't mention this earlier because it's subjective and a bit embarrassing, but after 5 round of 000 buck I didn't want to shoot anymore and today my shoulder is tender and feels loose in it's socket. Is this the normal perceived recoil for 000? Or could it be that the recoil is being mitigated less by the mechanism than normal? I noticed that the next round wasn't being caught by the bolt and that sometimes the empty shell hadn't even completely left the bbl after firing. This means that it is short stroking, right? Is this the usual cause of FTEs due to under gassing? Please don't crucify me for my ignorance, I am new to all this and I may be confusing terms.


First off:
As long as you search with Google: "Saiga 12 Forum WhateverIAmSearchingFor" before starting a new thread, and listen to sage advice of those on the forum that KNOW what they are talking about, you will not be crucified. Don't do those things to show courtesy, and they will eat you alive... LOL Don't worry. They can kill you, but it's illegal for them to eat you.

Second:

Sounds like you are shouldering the weapon too far out on your shoulder. Pull it in nice and tight in the meaty cup between your shoulder and collar bone. Lean into the recoil by leaning on your forward foot. Try to make sure your shoulder is 90 degrees to your shot.

Third:
EVLBLKWPNZ is one on the forum who KNOWS what he is talking about. Listen to him and others like him (not me, LOL).


Be patient and learn well. These are very simple weapons and fun to work on. You will get it. Be sure and share your experience so others may learn from you as well.
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#10 philosojester

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 02:05 PM

accidentally double posted, my bad.

Edited by philosojester, 21 November 2012 - 08:11 PM.

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#11 evlblkwpnz

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 05:53 PM

Bear in mind that these weapons especially are very hard to diagnose from afar when it comes to issues that may not be common. Additionally, your technique may not be the issue, but I will share what I have taught myself from experience and by analyzing the "why" of some of the techniques that you might see a professional use.


So....

"Square" your shoulders to the target and keep the weapon as close to the center of your chest as you can comfortably do it. Face the target with the shoulders. Do not angle the shoulders to the target or rest the stock against the shoulder or arm. If you angle the shoulders and rest the weapon on the shoulder or arm, there is less mass behind the weapon, therefore allowing the weapon to move more than desirable. If you "square" the shoulders to the target and hold the weapon near the center of the chest, the bulk of your main body mass is behind the weapon.

Pull the weapon in tight. The less of a running start it has, the less it will hurt and the less the weapon will move and kick like a mule. Consider someone striking you with their fist from a few inches away vs pushing you with their fist with the same amount of force. The strike will hurt more. Additionally, the more the weapon is allowed to move, the less energy is focused on moving the carrier rearward and ejecting the spent hull.

Lean forward. If you lean back, you are already well on your way backwards and the weapon will easily send you there. Think football. Does a linebacker lean back when he knows a hit is coming? Nope, he shifts his center of gravity low and forward.

Where are you placing your weight? Place your weight on the ball of the forward foot with the knee slightly bent. Use the rear foot for balance only. The bulk of your weight should not be resting on the rear foot or the heels of the feet, or you are on your way backwards before the fun even begins.

Here's a fun one. Chicken wing? (elbow up really high) Don't do it. Keep the elbow low and tight to the side of the body. This will give you a "structural" advantage and keep the muscles from tiring as quickly. Stand as if you are holding a rifle. Have someone push down on your trigger hand while holding your "air rifle" (air guitar, lol) with the chicken wing technique. Then try it with your elbow in nice and tight to the side while holding your "air rifle". Note how much easier they push the hand down when you employ the chicken wing.

I hope to get some time off and shoot a little soon and do a technique video. For now in this video, note how I am leaning forward, my weight is applied to my front foot and that knee is slightly bent, the rear foot is used for balance, shoulders are square to the target, weapon is close to the center of the chest, and the elbow is low and to the side of the body.

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#12 philosojester

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 08:03 PM

Update:

Okay, so I went out today after cleaning my puck and gas tube out with brake-cleaner and checking the ports. It still wouldn't cycle 000 buck (2.75") in the "1" position. Just for shits and giggles I put the selector to "2" (still with the 000 buck)and it cycled just fine 3 times, shooting the shell 8-12 feet away. I disassembled to see if I had damaged the receiver or the part that sticks out the back of the bolt (firing pin?) and both looked fine, but I didn't think I would damage it with only 3 rounds anyways.

Since the gun still isn't cycling on setting one with 000 buck even after I cleaned the piston and tube it means there is still a problem.

Here are some of the possible problems that I can come up with based on what I have gathered on other threads. Please correct me or feel free to add to my list.

1.) The gas ports are either too small or too few, providing just enough gas to cycle 000 buck when completely uncovered (on setting two) but not when partially covered (on setting one)
2.) The gas block is covering one of the ports.
3.) The gas plug is blocking the gas ports almost completely on setting one and partially on setting two instead of blocking them partially on setting one and not at all on setting two.
4.) My gas puck is letting too much gas past it and not transferring enough energy to the bolt carrier.

If problem 1, then solution 1: I need have my gunsmith open my ports to .009". Anyone have a price estimate?
If problem 2, then solution 2: I either need to file the gas block into a "D" shape or send it back to legion, mutually-exclusive options. One of which might fix it for free, and the other option which will cost in FFL transfers and time and hassle but will definitely fix the problem.
If problem 3, then solution 3: A new gas plug should solve the problem. $20-$45
If problem 4, then solution 4: I need to get a new gas puck. $20 (anyone recommend one? looking at the MD arms booster, and the CSS performance puck.)

The way I see it, my gun is either under-gassed (problems 1 and/or 2) or I have a defective part (problem 3 and/or 4). Or my gun is under-gassed and has defective parts (problems 1-4).

I would rather not modify my firearm if buying replacement parts will solve the problem, and I would rather not buy replacement parts if modifying my firearm will solve the problem. If I have to, I will both modify my firearm and buy replacement parts but I would like to modify my gun as little as possible and spend as little as I can on replacement parts. I am willing to modify my firearm as much as needed and buy as many parts as needed to get it running. I have an idea to help sort this out.

Please feel free to correct any poor assumptions I have made or any apparent gaps in my understanding. To help narrow this down I plan on running some different loads through the shotgun, and here's why. If my gun only fires high brass rounds on setting two and nothing else, then it is likely that the gun is under-gassed and/or has one or more defective parts. However, if the gun fires a wide range of loads on setting two, then it is less likely that the gun is under-gassed and only has one or more defective parts.

Experiment
Does it shoot #7
Does it shoot #6
Does it shoot #5
Does it shoot #4
Does it shoot #3
Does it shoot #2
Does it shoot #1
Does it shoot 0
Does it shoot 00

Known: Does not shoot low recoil Winchester #8, Does shoot 000 Buck.

Scenario 1: Shotgun shoots everything except #8 low recoil.
Scenario 2: Shotgun only shoots 000 Buck and nothing else.
Scenario 3: Shotgun shoots a large range of shots between #8 and 000, but not all. i.e. only #4-000
Scenario 4: Shotgun shoots a small range of shots between #8 and 000, but not all. i.e. only 0-000

If Scenario 1: I buy a new plug and see if it works, if it doesn't I then buy a new puck, then worry about modifications I might need to make
If Scenario 2: I send it back to Legion (If I can find the receipt, otherwise, file the gas block then drill the barrel if necessary).
If Scenario 3: Same as 1.
If Scenario 4: Same as 2.
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#13 philosojester

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 08:13 PM

Thanks, evlblkwpnz. That describes exactly how I am shooting, odd considering I haven't shot a shotgun since I was in short-pants (like Riding a bike, I guess). Except for the chicken wing thing, I didn't know which way to do it. Last time I had my elbow out to the side and today I kept my elbow down when shooting and it did seem to help quite a bit.
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#14 Big John!

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 08:34 PM

If had had just spent my hard earned money on a conversion, I guarantee that at they would be first on my list at this point. Seems to me that you have done your best to be a good guy and not just tear into the converter before checking for the usual problems.

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#15 topmaul

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 08:36 PM

I had a problem child Saiga send your internal parts to Pauly and they your problems will be solved thats what I did

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#16 philosojester

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 08:58 PM

If had had just spent my hard earned money on a conversion, I guarantee that at they would be first on my list at this point. Seems to me that you have done your best to be a good guy and not just tear into the converter before checking for the usual problems.


Well, I bought a gun that was already converted. It's not like I sent them a working gun and they sent me back a non-working gun. That would be a different story. The action isn't particularly rough, and the trigger pull is nice and crisp so I have no reason to believe that the FCG is the culprit and therefore no reason to implicate the conversion, converters, or the FCG itself. At this point, the only reason I would send it back is because a depressed, benighted, pseudo-communist, vodka swilling Russian was too busy giving himself Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome to pay attention to assembling my damn firearm.
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#17 evlblkwpnz

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 09:03 PM

Did you happen to save any of the hulls from the 000 Buck. If so, can you measure them including the expanded crimp.

I suggest trying a few different ammos. Maybe some Federal bulk 7.5 shot, 6 shot, 4 shot, etc.. The ammos that you have tried, so far, are on opposite end of the spectrum. Usually, anything low recoil will not run well and there is the potential for the expanded hulls of the 000 Buck to be slightly too long to eject when expanded.

I'd like to see some pics of the internals. Hammer profile, hammer spring, etc..
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#18 Nephilim7

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 10:13 PM

You aren't leaving the gas regulator screwed all the way down are you? Doesn't screwing all the way in and leaving it cut off the gas?

I'm probably wrong but thought it worth asking.

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#19 DLT

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:10 PM

Sounds like your ports may be undersized. Have you done the bolt drop test? And also, a little bit of lube on the puck won't kill your gun. I always rub a bit of mobil-1 on all the moving parts of my guns.

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#20 philosojester

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 12:14 AM

Did you happen to save any of the hulls from the 000 Buck. If so, can you measure them including the expanded crimp.

I suggest trying a few different ammos. Maybe some Federal bulk 7.5 shot, 6 shot, 4 shot, etc.. The ammos that you have tried, so far, are on opposite end of the spectrum. Usually, anything low recoil will not run well and there is the potential for the expanded hulls of the 000 Buck to be slightly too long to eject when expanded.

I'd like to see some pics of the internals. Hammer profile, hammer spring, etc..


I did save the hulls, actually. I didn't think to measure them, will do. I'll take some pictures of the internals soon and post them.

You aren't leaving the gas regulator screwed all the way down are you? Doesn't screwing all the way in and leaving it cut off the gas?

I'm probably wrong but thought it worth asking.


No I bottomed out the regulator and then backed it out until the detent pin clicked into position 1, backed out a bit more to go to position 2.
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#21 philosojester

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 12:22 AM

Sounds like your ports may be undersized. Have you done the bolt drop test? And also, a little bit of lube on the puck won't kill your gun. I always rub a bit of mobil-1 on all the moving parts of my guns.

Oh yeah, before I forget, Big John!, your avatar scores 110 out of 100. AWESOME Posted Image


I haven't seen anything about a bolt drop test, but I'll check it out. Mobil1, eh? The salesman at the gunshop told me that the Hoppes I use on my pistols was too thin for my saiga, but I'm reluctant to trust someone who is trying to sell me something. Should I consider using something else? Keep in mind I'm in a pretty wild climate and with harsh winners and hot humid summers.
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#22 philosojester

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 12:37 AM

Sounds like your ports may be undersized. Have you done the bolt drop test? And also, a little bit of lube on the puck won't kill your gun. I always rub a bit of mobil-1 on all the moving parts of my guns.

Oh yeah, before I forget, Big John!, your avatar scores 110 out of 100. AWESOME Posted Image


Bolt drop test. I tried looking it up but found nothing relevant. Are you asking me if I have dropped my bolt to see if it is still functional after falling on a hard surface? Forgive my confusion.
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#23 King of the Hill

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 11:00 AM

Do not do that^
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#24 Big John!

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 11:31 AM


Sounds like your ports may be undersized. Have you done the bolt drop test? And also, a little bit of lube on the puck won't kill your gun. I always rub a bit of mobil-1 on all the moving parts of my guns.

Oh yeah, before I forget, Big John!, your avatar scores 110 out of 100. AWESOME Posted Image


Bolt drop test. I tried looking it up but found nothing relevant. Are you asking me if I have dropped my bolt to see if it is still functional after falling on a hard surface? Forgive my confusion.

No! That is the gun drop test. If your gun continues to FTE, then you throw it down on a good hard concrete floor and see if it fires correctly after that. Repeat procedure until gun cycles correctly, or until enough parts fall off that you don't care any more.Posted Image

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#25 poolingmyignorance

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 11:35 AM

If all parts are assembled correctly, the only thing left to do is check your gas Ports. If they are obstructed or undersized nothing else you do will help. They have to be addressed.
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#26 Big John!

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 11:38 AM

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#27 GunFun

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:29 PM

Be deliberate about your ammo choices.

you don't care about the shot size, you care about the weight of shot in relation to velocity. The baseline is 1 1/8 oz of shot at 1200 FPS or more.

If you buy bulk federal birdshot whether it is 7.5 or 8 it should run on setting #2. That is the generally accepted baseline for an s12. If it doesn't, your gun needs some combination of gas and friction work. Winchester ammo of the same description is a bit weaker, but it burns cleaner. I reccomend getting a couple hundred of each of those.

I would not pay a smith to increase your gas port size. It is not a difficult job to do your self, if you are capable of using basic hand tools, such as punches, a hammer, a chunk of soft metal or hard wood for padding, a hand drill. My cousin did this with me in a camp ground in about 15 minutes on his. You can do it yourself as needed.

Start with 100% OEM puck,gas plug, springs, and handguard. You don't need extra variables while troubleshooting.
Here's your process:
1) Get some solvent such as acetone and fine sand paper. Take the paint and burrs off of the rails in your receiver.
2) Cycle the bolt without the spring. Feel for hang ups in the stroke. Smooth them out until the bolt runs smoothly. This will do a far better job of smoothing the rails than wasting $100 of buckshot.
a) There are going to be hangups where the bolt carrier and hammer interface. These are addressed in a proper bolt profile if you decide to do one later.
3) Hand cycle the bolt about 100 times with the spring in place. You could waste money doing the same thing with high brass, but you are going to be smart instead. This will break in the spring as much as it is going to break in.
4)Check your ports with a bent small wire. you should have at least 3 unobstructed ports. If not, you absolutely need to adress them properly. No parts will solve that problem.
5) Go to the range, screw your plug in all the way and back it out until #2 is by the detente.
6) Load up some federal bulk. It should fire 10/10 without Failure To Eject.**
a) If it does run properly, then check to see how the Winchester runs. (If not, don't bother Winchester bulk pack is a little weaker.)
b ) If it does not run either 100% proceed to open up your gas ports. The generally accepted standards are 4 ports at .078" - no more than .093", and 3 @ .093" -?? If you get this far, there are good guides on this forum about how to do this step.
b1) If your gun runs between about ~93-99 shells out of 100 without FTE, but not 100, then and only then does a booster puck of any brand make sense. If it fails to eject more than this, face up to reality and knock that block off to drill your ports.
7) It should run well now. Major bolt re-profile can be dealt with now if you want it, and it is worthwhile. However, the vast majority of guns should work properly by step 6.Even if you plan to do this work from the beginning, you still want the foundation work of steps 1-6.
8) Enjoy your S12, and sit back with the smug knowledge that you didn't get talked into doing pointless things or buying parts that don't help.

** Drum magazines create more drag on the bolt than stick mags. When establishing "100% operation", verify with a drum if you can.

Edited by GunFun, 26 November 2012 - 11:55 PM.

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#28 philosojester

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 10:36 PM

Wow, gunfun. Thanks. I'll do just that. Just to be clear, it is not likely that the problem is caused by the plug? I thought I read that the thread start was random and led to vast variances in the amount of gas blocked by setting 1.
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#29 DLT

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 12:58 AM


Sounds like your ports may be undersized. Have you done the bolt drop test? And also, a little bit of lube on the puck won't kill your gun. I always rub a bit of mobil-1 on all the moving parts of my guns.

Oh yeah, before I forget, Big John!, your avatar scores 110 out of 100. AWESOME Posted Image


Bolt drop test. I tried looking it up but found nothing relevant. Are you asking me if I have dropped my bolt to see if it is still functional after falling on a hard surface? Forgive my confusion.

http://forum.saiga-12.com/index.php?/topic/33836-modification-to-repair-fte-issues-on-saigas-with-blocked-gas-ports/page__st__210
post 230


Oh yeah, before I forget, Big John!, your avatar scores 110 out of 100. AWESOME Posted Image

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#30 S12KS-K

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 01:44 AM

First of all, clean it. Pour some hoppes into the gas port and go to town with a toothbrush. If that doesn't work:

Here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JxxnENqRsQI

Also get some of this:
Posted Image
Put it on a rag, Polish the bolt to a mirror shine.

Edited by S12KS-K, 23 November 2012 - 02:10 AM.





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