Well, I was sitting around a couple weeks ago, cleaning one of my rifles when I took a close look at her and thought that I might want to give her a new look.  Basically replace the stock.  My issue, however was that being in NJ, I have to keep her NJ legal, which means, no retrofitting the muzzle, keeping the stock magazine, and no collapsible or folding butt stock… This left me a little limited in design.  I also wanted an AR type handle, which is not legal in NJ either, to my knowledge…  The result however was a Dragunov type stock from ATI.  It seems that Dragunov stocks are legal in NJ because they have none of the folding or collapsible parts as mentioned earlier and are all one piece.  It also gives me the AR type of handle that I was looking for as you can see in the above image.  It was inexpensive enough, weighs about the same as the wooden stock that was on the rifle already, and seemed easy enough to make a change to… It was also a good opportunity to give the SKS a thorough cleaning since it had been a while since I completely disassembled her and cleaned her up… More on the Dragonuv system can be found here.

Taking the SKS apart was easy enough.  I had done it several times with ease, and it is an easy rifle to re-assemble.  Or so I thought.  Once cleaned, I started reassembling the rifle with the new ATI stock.  The receiver and the barrel seemed to fit snuggly in the stock, and was easy enough to get back together with the exception of the hand guard above the barrel of the rifle.  It is riveted in place, and I could not pound out the rivet.  I was going to drill it out until I found that that particular rivet is a “hard to find item,” and are considered rare.  I decided to keep the stock hand guard on the rifle until I am able to locate a rivet or two to purchase and have a couple as spares.  I have two SKSs so this makes sense for me, in my mind.

The reassembly issue that got me was re-inserting the trigger group.  For the life of me, I thought I was doing something wrong, for roughly three hours…  After assessing the situation in my frustrated state, I decided that I was going to have to grind down a small area where the rear of the trigger seats right around where the trigger guard spring would be…  As it turns out, after about 10 minutes with the grinding attachment on the dremel tool, and trying to re-seat the trigger group a few times, magic happened and it snapped into place…  Here are a few pictures for you to show the transformation from one look and feel to the other…

 

Before Disassembly and Reassembly. Click for larger image

Some Disassembly. Click to see larger image

 

Almost completely disassembled, less the gas tube. Click to see larger image.

Reassembled with the ATI Dragonuv stock, less the black hand guard. You can see the wood through the slots in the stock. Click to see larger image.

 

Overall, I like the new look and feel of my SKS.  The next step is to take it to the range and re-sight it in.  My grouping seems to be a little to the right, so it is time to get out my sight tool and readjust it a bit.  Had I not had trigger guard issues, this swap would have taken roughly 20 – 30 minutes had I not wanted to clean and oil the rifle.

When finished, I reattached my sling, which seems to be a little more ergonomic on this stock than the original stick as well.  I’m looking forward to sighting her in soon…

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We’re a group of suburban preppers in the Northeast and live in the NYC suburbs that write The Suburban Survival Blog to talk about preparedness and self-reliance out there to help others prepare for what could be an uncertain future due to economic, weather, and other reasons.