Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #1
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    Default Barrel shortening. (psl)

    I would like to hack a good portion of the PSL's barrel off. While I am normally a DIY gun owner. This is beyond my skill level I believe. I mean, I know I could cut it off. But crowning the barrel, and rethreading it leaves too many places for error IMO. Where can I get this done in the Pittsburgh area? And how much should I expect to pay. I would like to go down to 18" or so. This gun shoots VERY well and I dont want to risk mucking up a good gun fucking around. That said. If someone has experience doing this type of work with AKs and the like. I would love to hear your thoughts.

    Input would be great.

    I put this rifle up for sale to perhaps get an RFB. But I am thinking of just shortening it up a little to make it more handy. (And keeping it)
    Put up, or SHUT up.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Barrel shortening. (psl)

    Personally I would advise against it. You don't know what you might wind up doing to the rifle.

    This gun shoots VERY well and I dont want to risk mucking up a good gun fucking around.
    Shortening the barrel...who knows what that will do to the accuracy you already get. Add in, with a shorter barrel, it may wind up screwing up the gas system and find the rifle won't cycle (less gas to operate the piston) then you are looking at enlarging the gas bleed hole.

    You may just want to sell it and get something you really want.
    "Disperse you Rebels! Damn you! Throw down your Arms and Disperse!" British Major Pitcairn at Lexington April 19, 1775

    "Sometimes reasonable men must do unreasonable things" Marvin Heemeyer

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Barrel shortening. (psl)

    Quote Originally Posted by 762xIan View Post
    Personally I would advise against it. You don't know what you might wind up doing to the rifle.



    Shortening the barrel...who knows what that will do to the accuracy you already get. Add in, with a shorter barrel, it may wind up screwing up the gas system and find the rifle won't cycle (less gas to operate the piston) then you are looking at enlarging the gas bleed hole.

    You may just want to sell it and get something you really want.
    I was just about to mention the same things. I'm not super familiar with these particular rifles, but I know a bit about them and about barrel shortening. Changing the length of the barrel usually does effect the way the firearm shoots. It's not always detrimental, and is sometimes positive, but if the rifle already shoots, it may be in a negative fashion. At the very least, it's probably not going to like the ammo that it used to, and you'll probably have to try to find what it does like to shoot. It may have shot almost everything well in the configuration it is now, and may be quite picky after cutting the barrel down.

    Shortening the barrel on a gas gun can definitely change the way they cycle and their reliability also. This would probably be depending on the length of the gas system, loads being used, etc, etc. It's possible to end up with a rifle that won't cycle light loads, and may show some unreliability with even standard loads. Have you researched cutting down PSL's much? I'm sure it's been done, and a little more specific information might be helpful. You very well may have to end up opening the hole in the gas block. That I'm sure will have its own complications that can arise, I.E. overgassing, or still undergassing the rifle. It just seems a little bit iffy to me to do to a rifle that already shoots well.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Barrel shortening. (psl)

    the reliability won't be affected, the PSL is a notoriously overgassed rifle. the rifle usually benefits from shortening if a professional job is done. the barrel of the PSL is long and way too thin for it's intended role and barrel whip is a known problem. the groups usually begin to string vertically when the barrel starts to warm up and accuracy goes away after a certain number of rounds, right?

    look over this place, rifle dynamics, they have a very nice package for the PSL and similar rifles called the guerrilla sniper job.

    http://www.rifledynamics.com/services/gsr.php
    MORDENTE MEUM

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Barrel shortening. (psl)

    Quote Originally Posted by mpi View Post
    the reliability won't be affected, the PSL is a notoriously overgassed rifle. the rifle usually benefits from shortening if a professional job is done. the barrel of the PSL is long and way too thin for it's intended role and barrel whip is a known problem. the groups usually begin to string vertically when the barrel starts to warm up and accuracy goes away after a certain number of rounds, right?

    look over this place, rifle dynamics, they have a very nice package for the PSL and similar rifles called the guerrilla sniper job.

    http://www.rifledynamics.com/services/gsr.php
    Yup. Everything mpi just said is everything I've read. TGI even made the FPK para (a seriously chopped PSL) The front sight was literally ON top of the gas block. I assume that they did open up the gas hole. I'm OK with that. I have a system I use on AK's to tailor the gas system to my liking by use of a restrictor in the gas block to tune them down so they aren't so overgassed. It was originally designed with the PSL in mind in a think tank on AK files. So I can drill it out if I need to, and then size it back down so it's perfect.

    The PSL will NOT fire heavy ball without literally banging itself apart. It's that over gassed. (Which is why that restrictor setup was cooked up in the first place.) I shoot Russian light ball, and have cases of it. I don't need to shoot heavy ball. But I would VERY much like to take 6" off the front end of the gun. By detaching the factory brake, and going with a better designed and shorter brake. That maybe takes an inch off. But the factory barrel is already 24.5" PLUS the brake. Which means even if I go to 18"... I can lop 6" off the nose of this puppy.

    As far as stringing you are right mpi. It's not so bad when you are inside of 100yds. But if you are out further and shooting in any kind of repetitive fashion you might as well lean on the elevation turret between each shot. I'm lucky that it really seems to drift slowly even when it's flaming hot. (I'm not patient, and it's a semi-auto...) Which means if you are used to the gun you know where the next shot is going to be. I think hacking it down, and putting a non-Romanian / AK eske crown on it alone will improve on accuracy. Yes, I'll lose velocity. Yes, it will fuck with my scope which is BDC for this round / offset / velocity / barrel length.

    But I'm not a serious long distance shooter as it is. (And if I was, I wouldn't be using a PSL) Increasing portability of this beastly DMR would mean it would get packed up to go shooting more often.

    As far as dropping $450 @ rifle dynamics...

    Meh. Nope. For that money I will sell it and buy an RFB. Which puts me in an 18" barreled, 26.5" OAL weapon with 20rd mags that uses a more accurate and plentiful albeit more expensive round. (.308)

    I just want the barrel cut, crowned, and rethreaded.

    Who can do it around here in Pittsburgh so I don't have to ship it?
    Last edited by Asmodeus6; July 18th, 2011 at 11:18 PM.
    Put up, or SHUT up.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Barrel shortening. (psl)

    Anyway. Here she is.



    And here is the FPK para compared to a normal length PSL.

    Put up, or SHUT up.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Barrel shortening. (psl)

    before chopping, i would do some research into the barrel length that allows full powder burn for 7.62x54r

    for instance, in .308, 18" barrels allow for full powder burn. anything shorter results in big fireballs and significantly reduced velocity.

    so i would keep the minimum length that allows full burn without significantly reduced velocity; reduced velocity would negate alot of the advantages of the larger cartridge (other than cost to shoot it!)

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Barrel shortening. (psl)

    ones i've seen were good around 20 inches.

    I'm familiar with the hollow hex screw solution from the akforum.net. I'm on there all the time. you might also consider buying one of the para front ends offered on gunbroker and mounting that. when I'm doing something like this i always have to buy an original to keep pristine for collection purposes. vz58's are in my sights currently.
    MORDENTE MEUM

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Barrel shortening. (psl)

    Quote Originally Posted by mpi View Post
    ones i've seen were good around 20 inches.

    I'm familiar with the hollow hex screw solution from the akforum.net. I'm on there all the time. you might also consider buying one of the para front ends offered on gunbroker and mounting that. when I'm doing something like this i always have to buy an original to keep pristine for collection purposes. vz58's are in my sights currently.
    That's kind of my thing about doing any of this and why I was just going to sell it. This is a matching imported rifle... Not the ones built from random parts you see floating around now. If I sell it - I won't likely ever get another like it, in this shape, that also shoots well.

    The same reason it makes me leery to hack it up.


    But keeping it intact just to keep it intact when I'd like to trim it up... meh... IDK... It's not an SVD. I don't like it enough to buy another one just to have sit around pristine.

    IDK.
    Put up, or SHUT up.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Barrel shortening. (psl)

    give Charlie at precision armements a call. By trade he is a machinist and runs the shop after work. he is great with ak's and the like. i"ve seen some custom work from him that was fantastic. He should be able to cut that down for you or answer any question you may have about doing so.

    http://www.precisionarmaments.com/

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