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Cleaning rod on a Saiga

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For as long as I have been converting Saigas (since about 2007), I wondered about mounting the cleaning rod on a 7.62x39 IZ132 Saiga, WITHOUT changing the gas block and front sight base.  


First, the Saiga comes with a 20" skinny rod, with the outside diameter and thread pattern of AK74 and AK 103 Izsmash rifles.  I guess the 20" simplifies supply for both 16" and 20" Saigas.  There is no way short of major machine shop to shorten it to 16".  I got a Bulgarian AK74 rod.  It worked when I replaced the FSB with a 24mm one and an Ak103 brake.  With the standard SAIGA FSB and Gas Block, using Kvar polymer, or used Comm Block wood, the cleaning rod was too loose, just flopping around.


On my 7th conversion (the one prior to this one, I had A set of Russian AKM wood for it.  I mounted it with a CSS bolt on handguard retainer.  I once again tried the 20" factory rod.  Besides being to long, it was still flopping around.  


I was cleaning the safe out, and found a cleaning rod from a WASR I had years ago in the back safe.  I pushed it in, and when inserted fully, the angle of the rod hole, the tightness of the rod, actually torqued the cleaning rod against the bottom of the barrel, nestled in the bottom of the FSB, behind the lock washer.  The edge of the 14mm crush washer caught it and kept it from sliding forward under recoil.  the tension created by the angle of the hole kept it in place.  I use a Romanian buttstock cleaning kit, to match the thread pattern of the rod.


I added a 5/8" crush washer between the end of the barrel and the 14mm crush washer.  It gave just a little more edge for it to catch on to be safe.


Fast forward a couple years now, and after a couple thousand rounds through that Saiga and the current Saiga, the cleaning rods have stayed in place using this system.  It is so tight, that I have to use the punch from the cleaning kit in the hole at the end of the cleaning rod, to use it as a T handle to pull it out.While I sold the last Saiga with the cleaning rod, I picked up another AKM rod from Desert Fox Sales for this one.  I think it is Polish or East German.  It is tight like the Romanian rod was.







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I actually use it and the buttstock kit to clean the rifle. If it was just for looks, I wouldn't bother, LOL.  


Youtube "Using AK cleaning kit".  There is a video out there that explains how to use it.  Did you know the cap of the cleaning kit is a muzzle guide for the cleaning rod to protect the crown when cleaning?  The body of the kit is a cleaning rod handle, and a handle to open the gas tube lock, putting the tab in a slot on the kit body.  Other neat stuff about it, too.


German HK G3 kits in the rectangular OD plastic box are neat AK kits, too.  They use a pull chain.  The oversized brush in it works great in AK gas tubes.  I have one for my PTR91 HK G3 clone.  Great kit!



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This one does not rattle.  The upward angle of the hole in the hand guard presses it securely against the bottom of the barrel.  ANd yes, cleaning rods work best for stuck cases and plugged bores.  Unplugging a bore with a shoe lace or bore snake doesn't work very well.

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