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Old 08-17-2012, 01:42 AM   #1
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Default Heat treating receivers

Does anybody on this site offer receiver heat treating? AND knows what their doing? I have 4 of the Polish 80% receivers that I want done.
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Old 08-17-2012, 11:08 AM   #2
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The Polish receiver blanks are most likely "steel 50" which is carbon steel that cross references to 1050 steel. They are not 4130 chrome moly that most of the American-made receivers are.
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Old 08-17-2012, 05:12 PM   #3
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Yes, I know that. That's why I'm asking for leads to a heat treating facility that knows what they are doing.
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Old 08-17-2012, 05:18 PM   #4
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Are you sure they aren't already hardened? The receiver shell and lower bolt rails seem to be hardened before spot welding and drilling in the European factories. They aren't super hard but are harder than dead soft.
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Old 08-17-2012, 05:36 PM   #5
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Well, there have been posts here and on weapons guild attesting to the fact that these polish receivers are not hardened, and that the steel is too soft to just spot harden the ejector tip and pins like most folks do on the 4130 shells made here in USA. One poster said that his receiver shell began failing after a few hundred rounds. Thats why I'm looking for a heat treating facility!
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Old 08-17-2012, 06:17 PM   #6
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They are probably junk. That's probably why the Poles are sending them to us instead of using them themselves.
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Old 08-17-2012, 06:20 PM   #7
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Soft 1050 steel is easier to form and it is easier to deform than soft chrome moly steel. Heat treatment is likely more critical with the carbon steel than it is even with the chrome moly receiver flats needing heat treatment. If the carbon steel is hardened too hard it is more likely to crack. The Russians changed, upgraded the steel for the newer AK-74M, AK-100 series and Saiga / Vepr rifles.
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Old 08-17-2012, 06:27 PM   #8
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check with Turbothis on AKforum he is having them done
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Old 08-17-2012, 07:58 PM   #9
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The Dark Knight heat treats his receivers. I'm pretty sure he won't do a completed one, but he may do the rails and body separately. As I understand it, he is pretty busy with the barrel work he is doing, but it's worth sending him a PM.
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Old 08-17-2012, 08:06 PM   #10
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OK, thanks!
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Old 08-17-2012, 10:35 PM   #11
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I spot treated mine on top rails and holes and rails... Unless you have access to do the whole thing that's the best you can do...
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Old 08-19-2012, 09:43 PM   #12
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Alright, lets do it.

I have a lot of people waiting on barrel work, so that will be taken care of first.

If there is interest I will start full heat treat on these. Of coarse, I will not weld or drill.


The only major issue is access to a hardness tester.....I have a couple leads, but if someone gets me access to one their parts will be done for free.

Also, if the rails are welded in after the heat treat the HAZ zone of the weld will create a some area softer than it would be if the heat treat was after the weld. Still better than a torch.

Let me know if you guys want to do it, I need to have enough orders for it to be worth the time.

REMEMBER THESE HAVE TO BE IN THE SAME STATE YOU BOUGHT THEM IN!

Thanks

Last edited by The Dark Knight; 08-19-2012 at 10:09 PM.
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Old 08-19-2012, 09:50 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Dark Knight View Post
Alright, lets do it.

I have a lot of people waiting on barrel work, so that will be taken care of first.

If there is interest I will start full heat treat on these. Of coarse, I will not weld or drill.


The only major issue is access to a hardness tester.....I have a couple leads, but if someone gets me access to one their parts will be done for free.

Also, if the rails are welded in after the heat treat the HAZ zone of the weld will create a some area softer than it would be if the heat treat was after the weld. Still better than a torch.

Let me know if you guys want to do it, I need to have enough orders for it to be worth the time.

Thanks
I'd be interested as well.
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Old 08-19-2012, 10:06 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Dark Knight View Post
Alright, lets do it.

I have a lot of people waiting on barrel work, so that will be taken care of first.

If there is interest I will start full heat treat on these. Of coarse, I will not weld or drill.


The only major issue is access to a hardness tester.....I have a couple leads, but if someone gets me access to one their parts will be done for free.

Also, if the rails are welded in after the heat treat the HAZ zone of the weld will create a some area softer than it would be if the heat treat was after the weld. Still better than a torch.

Let me know if you guys want to do it, I need to have enough orders for it to be worth the time.

Thanks
Will have 3-4 receivers to heat treat
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Old 08-19-2012, 10:11 PM   #15
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I found a good kiln used on craigslist for $250. temp gauge. 110v.

thats what you guys need.
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Old 08-19-2012, 10:48 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by mrabolli View Post
I found a good kiln used on craigslist for $250. temp gauge. 110v.

thats what you guys need.
Have you treated receivers with it yet? I got a cone-controlled kiln two weeks ago for $250 off Craigslist, but the kiln sitter cone supports were missing. I ordered a pair of them, and a bunch of kiln bricks to make a form out of, but I haven't yet had a chance to use mine. How do you like yours?
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Old 08-19-2012, 11:42 PM   #17
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God bless your remmiers after the full heat treat.
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Old 08-19-2012, 11:56 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by my-rifle View Post
Have you treated receivers with it yet? I got a cone-controlled kiln two weeks ago for $250 off Craigslist, but the kiln sitter cone supports were missing. I ordered a pair of them, and a bunch of kiln bricks to make a form out of, but I haven't yet had a chance to use mine. How do you like yours?
negative.

I heated it up to 1650 degrees (took over two hours) to test it but im not doing builds right now. Dont know why but im not. Im very happy to have a 110v model and one with a temp gauge built in. (dont know if its accurate). Mine is a front loader type and just fits the receiver inside. Perfect for the garage. Not the big tub type.

I dont have 220v in the garage so i really didnt want to have to wire that up. glad I found what I did.
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Old 08-20-2012, 02:05 AM   #19
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negative.

I heated it up to 1650 degrees (took over two hours) to test it but im not doing builds right now. Dont know why but im not. Im very happy to have a 110v model and one with a temp gauge built in. (dont know if its accurate). Mine is a front loader type and just fits the receiver inside. Perfect for the garage. Not the big tub type.

I dont have 220v in the garage so i really didnt want to have to wire that up. glad I found what I did.
I really like the front loader models. I looked for a while, then settled on a top-loader. As I said earlier I'm still waiting for the parts for the kiln sitter, but I'd like to point out to all reading this that the wiring for a kiln is laughably easy. I'm a bit embarrassed to admit that I haven't gotten one before now (30-sh builds). They're really inexpensive (specially considering the price of a NoDakSpud receiver!) I suppose my other projects keep getting in the way.
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Old 08-21-2012, 11:52 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Dark Knight View Post
Alright, lets do it.

I have a lot of people waiting on barrel work, so that will be taken care of first.

If there is interest I will start full heat treat on these. Of coarse, I will not weld or drill.


The only major issue is access to a hardness tester.....I have a couple leads, but if someone gets me access to one their parts will be done for free.

Also, if the rails are welded in after the heat treat the HAZ zone of the weld will create a some area softer than it would be if the heat treat was after the weld. Still better than a torch.

Let me know if you guys want to do it, I need to have enough orders for it to be worth the time.

REMEMBER THESE HAVE TO BE IN THE SAME STATE YOU BOUGHT THEM IN!

Thanks
I have 4 so I'm interested if your going to do this...
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Old 08-22-2012, 12:50 AM   #21
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The Polish receiver shells do seem to be dead soft and not heat treated. the imported, Romanian, Bulgarian and Yugoslavian lower bolt rails seem to be fully hardened before being spot welded. the Yugo receivers are even spot welded to the trunnions. Something that is likely done after heat treating. The Polish receiver shells and imported lower bolt rails should be 1050 steel (or a steel that is the same as American 1050 steel). the American flats and rails are usually 4130 steel. The european hardness specs for the 1050 receivers are 37.0 HRC to 44.0 HRC. A range considered fairly large by American industry standards. Most of the receivers pieces that have been hardness tested reportedly are usually in the lower end of this range but they could be anywhere in the range. The Soviets found that at 44.5 HRC and above, the receivers tended to crack. AK-Builder did sell 1050 steel flats for a short time. they eemed more heat treat sensitive than the 4130 flats. The original AKM receivers were suppose to be 0.9 mm thick sheet steel not 1.0 mm. The spot welds and spot welding tips are 6.0 mm in diameter.
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Old 08-22-2012, 12:27 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by allesennogwat View Post
The Polish receiver shells do seem to be dead soft and not heat treated. the imported, Romanian, Bulgarian and Yugoslavian lower bolt rails seem to be fully hardened before being spot welded. the Yugo receivers are even spot welded to the trunnions. Something that is likely done after heat treating. The Polish receiver shells and imported lower bolt rails should be 1050 steel (or a steel that is the same as American 1050 steel). the American flats and rails are usually 4130 steel. The european hardness specs for the 1050 receivers are 37.0 HRC to 44.0 HRC. A range considered fairly large by American industry standards. Most of the receivers pieces that have been hardness tested reportedly are usually in the lower end of this range but they could be anywhere in the range. The Soviets found that at 44.5 HRC and above, the receivers tended to crack. AK-Builder did sell 1050 steel flats for a short time. they eemed more heat treat sensitive than the 4130 flats. The original AKM receivers were suppose to be 0.9 mm thick sheet steel not 1.0 mm. The spot welds and spot welding tips are 6.0 mm in diameter.


Good info, where did you find the polish blanks were 1050?

I heard they were 4130, I need to know this for sure.

Anybody have a hardness tester? I'm in the market to buy one.
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Old 08-22-2012, 12:37 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by The Dark Knight View Post
Good info, where did you find the polish blanks were 1050?

I heard they were 4130, I need to know this for sure.

Anybody have a hardness tester? I'm in the market to buy one.
Where did you hear they were 4130? That's a commonly used, more expensive American chrome moly steel that is more difficult to form than 1050 steel. The European AKM and AK-74 manuals show the receiver sheet steel to be, "steel 50" which is the same as American 1050 steel. 1050 steel is 0.50 percent carbon. 4130 steel is 0.30 percent carbon. The newer Russian AK-74M rifles have receivers that are 0.40 percent carbon and an alloy which can be hardened to a higher hardness than 1050 steel that was previously used in AK receivers. The Polish receivers should be the same steel as the Soviet-made receivers were.
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Old 08-22-2012, 12:45 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by allesennogwat View Post
Where did you hear they were 4130? That's a commonly used, more expensive American chrome moly steel that is more difficult to form than 1050 steel. The European AKM and AK-74 manuals show the receiver sheet steel to be, "steel 50" which is the same as American 1050 steel. 1050 steel is 0.50 percent carbon. 4130 steel is 0.30 percent carbon. The newer Russian AK-74M rifles have receivers that are 0.40 percent carbon and an alloy which can be hardened to a higher hardness than 1050 steel that was previously used in AK receivers. The Polish receivers should be the same steel as the Soviet-made receivers were.
I don't care either way, I just want some proof so I make the best product. I don't doubt you, I've read your posts and you know about the subject.

Actually, alloy steels like 4130, 4140, are designed for what we need. A steel that can be machined then heat treated to a hardness. That way tooling lasts longer etc...

I'm just not sure if the polish might have switched at some point. I might as well get one and do some tests to tell the steel type.

I'm going to do some practice runs anyway.
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Old 08-22-2012, 12:55 PM   #25
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Well the Russians didn't change receiver steels until the 1990's on an "upgraded" product. The AKM is an AKM. I doubt any changes were made to AKM receiver steel in any country. The newer Polish Beryl rifle may or may not have a different steel. The Polish military took a very long accepting the Beryl rifle that was designed in 1996 but wasn't issued until years later after much testing.

The imported bolt rails are hardened before being welded and drilled. The Yugoslavian AK receivers are spot welded to the trunnions and this must happen after the parts have been hardened. it would appear that the receiver shells and bolt rails are hardened before being spot welded. The hardness isn't super hard and the holes for the FCG axis pins and for the rivets would be drilled / machined after hardening and spot welding the bolt rails.
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Old 08-22-2012, 01:01 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allesennogwat View Post
Well the Russians didn't change receiver steels until the 1990's on an "upgraded" product. The AKM is an AKM. I doubt any changes were made to AKM receiver steel in any country. The newer Polish Beryl rifle may or may not have a different steel. The Polish military took a very long accepting the beryl rifle that was designed in 1996 but wasn't issued until years later after much testing.

The imported bolt rails are hardened before being welded and drilled. The Yugoslavian AK receivers are spot welded to the trunnions and this must happen after the parts have been hardened. it would appear that the receiver shells and bolt rails are harden before being spot welded. The hardness isn't super hard and the holes for the FCG axis pins and for the rivets would be drilled / machined after hardening and spot welding the bolt rails.

I agree, but we kinda mess up the whole production aspect when we home build. I can't do things in different order to make a "better" suiting build order.

I think this could be really cool, I just need a hardness tester to make it perfect.

I will heat treat receivers for free for members that help in testing. Maybe build a rifle with one, shoot a few hundred rounds....

allesennogwat, you seem to know what you're doing want to help?
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Old 08-22-2012, 01:08 PM   #27
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Yeah, the most of the American-made receivers likely have the rails welded and drilled before heat treating. Many American-made receivers are 4130 steel but some have been other steels too. The additional carbon in the 1050 steel makes them more crack prone if hardened to too high a hardness. The 1050 steel isn't as tough as the 4130 chrome moly steel but it should be easy to get hardened with the amount of carbon in it. if left too soft it won't be as strong as soft 4130 steel. It hardened too hard, it can start to crack around stress points.
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Old 08-22-2012, 01:22 PM   #28
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I think we've established 1700 and 500 for quenching and tempering 4130 steel. Does anyone have the temperatures for the 1050 steel?
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Old 08-22-2012, 01:49 PM   #29
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Be careful when quenching 1050. I had the best luck with used engine oil vs. water. I used plain water and cracked the metal around the FCG holes. I've heard of solutions where one adds salt, soap or other things to water but I never tried them. I also now use 4130 and haven't done a 1050 flat for a number of years so I never tried other methods.
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Old 08-22-2012, 02:25 PM   #30
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Be careful when quenching 1050. I had the best luck with used engine oil vs. water. I used plain water and cracked the metal around the FCG holes. I've heard of solutions where one adds salt, soap or other things to water but I never tried them. I also now use 4130 and haven't done a 1050 flat for a number of years so I never tried other methods.
Yeah, brine is a lot better than just water.

Which brine has some advantages and disadvantages compared to oil. Also, some steel can't be quenched in brine.

Here is my plan:

Get a few test pieces

quench in oil (actual quenching oil) and brine, to see which one does best

use a hardness tester to dial in the exact hardness we all want

build a test gun
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Old 08-22-2012, 03:44 PM   #31
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Heating and tempering data can be found here: www.asminternational.org/pdf/spotlights/tempering.pdf

According to that PDF, 1050 is a water quenching steel that requires slightly higher tempering temperatures than 4130.
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Old 08-22-2012, 04:32 PM   #32
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I have used both Oil and Salt water I like the salt water better just a hassel cleaning all that rust over oil off the surface...
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Old 08-29-2012, 08:44 PM   #33
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sup sup?!?
been trying to get this off my chest for weeks now. (thanks Jen, for activating my account)
don't mind if I jump right in like I'm from these parts now...

for hardening 1050, austenitizing temp is 1525*F

for quenching 1050, water or brine...
...or oil for rounds less than 0.25" diameter

now for tempering 1050, it's a little tricky.
if the target is 46 HRc, then it's 600*F for 2 hours. problem is that's in the range of blue brittleness. impact resistance suffers greatly.
if we push the temp up to 750*F, that's no longer an issue but we end up with 42 HRc. not bad.
if we then lessen the time to say 1 hour, then we get ~44 HRc.
less than 1 hour and now time and temp become real critical.
I'd say 30 minutes at 750*F is the ticket.

what says yous?

the Rockwell hardness tester will be sweet, but who's willing to smash one or two with an iron pipe? both tests matter. I'd rather have a little more impact resistance than a few more thousand rounds myself.

Last edited by FunkedOut; 08-29-2012 at 08:47 PM. Reason: missed a few words here and there. can't type as fast as I think.
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Old 08-29-2012, 11:04 PM   #34
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sup sup?!?
been trying to get this off my chest for weeks now. (thanks Jen, for activating my account)
don't mind if I jump right in like I'm from these parts now...

for hardening 1050, austenitizing temp is 1525*F

for quenching 1050, water or brine...
...or oil for rounds less than 0.25" diameter

now for tempering 1050, it's a little tricky.
if the target is 46 HRc, then it's 600*F for 2 hours. problem is that's in the range of blue brittleness. impact resistance suffers greatly.
if we push the temp up to 750*F, that's no longer an issue but we end up with 42 HRc. not bad.
if we then lessen the time to say 1 hour, then we get ~44 HRc.
less than 1 hour and now time and temp become real critical.
I'd say 30 minutes at 750*F is the ticket.

what says yous?

the Rockwell hardness tester will be sweet, but who's willing to smash one or two with an iron pipe? both tests matter. I'd rather have a little more impact resistance than a few more thousand rounds myself.
The Soviets have already figured out the hard part. The 1050 sheet metal receivers tend to crack when hardened above 44 HRC. The specs call for a hardness range of 37 HRC to 44 HRC. They aren't hardened super hard. They are hardened before spot welding and before making the rivet holes.
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Daraclor: A brand of anti-malaria pills which we had to drink every week while on the border. Legend had it that these would make you turn yellow and that you wouldn't be able to tan.
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Old 08-29-2012, 11:22 PM   #35
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1525*F & 750*F for 2 hours then!
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