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Thread: Added safety hole repair for Tokarev pistols

  1. #1
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    Default Added safety hole repair for Tokarev pistols

    This was done on a Yugo M57 but is applicable to any Tokarev with the added safety.

    http://forums.gunboards.com/showthre...hole-fix-(Weld)
    Tokarev half cock notch: It was good enough for Russia, China, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Yugoslavia... It's good enough for me!

  2. #2
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    Wire feed welders are pretty messy. Micro-welding would be neater. But my own preference would be to use plugs. A zero tolerance fit plus some epoxy designed for metal repairs, like locktite Epoxy Weld, will do the job without mess.
    I swear by Jupiter Optimus Maximus .... in the army of the consul Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus and for 10 miles around it I will not steal anything worth more than a sestertius in any one day.

  3. #3
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    I have a TIG, so spatter wouldn't be a problem.

    The main thing I wanted to contribute to this thread, is the fact that the same Zinc that makes you sick when welding galvanized steel is present in Brass. (The gas escaping from the brass may have contributed to your porosity problem as well.)

    I held multiple AWS certifications before I retired, and most of my work was with SS sheet metal.When we used a backer for filling holes, we used copper. The weld will not stick to it, copper acts as a heat sink (lessening warpage), and copper won't produce the Zinc smoke. As for warpage control in the situation you described, I would also have been using a wet rag every few seconds to help keep the surrounding steel cool.

    That being said, I can't agree with what you have done to this pistol, but that is just my personal opinion, and no insult is intended.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by seanpmc69 View Post

    I can't agree with what you have done to this pistol, but that is just my personal opinion, and no insult is intended.
    In what way? By removing the safety or by filling the holes with weld or the method I used to weld it?
    Tokarev half cock notch: It was good enough for Russia, China, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Yugoslavia... It's good enough for me!

  5. #5
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    I'll vote for considering this a repair. Personally, I feel that the wide range of generally defective "safeties" installed in TT-33s for import into the US are actually a safety hazard themselves. Not only are they prone to failure, but the simple fact that they are non-standard and varied makes it difficult to generate a clear consensus among shooters as to how to handle TT-33s safely. They aren't Sigs. They won't be adopted by a modern military -- and for very good reason. Shooters need to be very cautious in handling them. But they do have their strengths, are historically interesting, and fill some niche roles quite nicely. I'm not sure what collectors will wind up thinking of re-welds like this one. It's no longer the original US retail configuration, but not fully original to its service condition. I'd rather have one that's been expertly restored in a similar manner than a GCA-compliance butchered gun, personally -- but then I'm not a collector. Thanks for posting.

  6. #6
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    I think its his gun, he should do with it what he wants. The safeties suck, I'd love to have a tokarev without them. On the yugo's, they are not that bad, at least they do not have to be used and do not get in the way of using the gun. I have tried to think of a way of eliminating one of my yugo safeties, but have not decided yet on how to do it if I choose.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by PolishRon View Post
    In what way? By removing the safety or by filling the holes with weld or the method I used to weld it?
    In removing the safety, but I see that the following post says that the safety conversions were defective, so that is an example of me opening my mouth without realizing there was a legitimate reason for doing it.

    I can help you with the final finish on any future conversions of this sort though. A lot of the SS welding I did involved welding SS countertops and restaurant dishwashing conveyors together. The weld seams had to be finished out in a manner that they were as close to invisible as possible. After knocking off the top of the weld with a hard wheel, I switched to 80g flapper wheels to carefully get the final remnants of the weld flush with the countertop.

    The final finishing was done with scotch-brite pads wrapped around a straight-edged strip of steel, always going in the same direction as the grain that was present on the surface of the SS. If you are careful not to get any low spots while grinding, you can make the weld "disappear".

    That Tokarev appears to have a lengthwise finishing "grain", and from what I can tell by looking at the pictures, red scotch-brite, followed by green scotch-brite, should get you pretty close to the original finish as long as you are careful to stay in line with the original grain.

  8. #8
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    Thank you for the input, I appreciate the tips on how to improve the methods and results.
    I realize my results are far from invisible. It was my first attempt at this kind of work, mostly I weld sheet metal on vehicles.
    I don't have gas on my welder or a mill to machine down the weld. With both of these I am sure it would look better.
    Tokarev half cock notch: It was good enough for Russia, China, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Yugoslavia... It's good enough for me!

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    I didn't mean that to sound like criticism of your work. I just wanted to tell you how you could do it by hand next time you do one. If you have a large build-up, knock it down close with a grinder, then finish it down flush by stoning, or carefully filing it. Once it's flush, you should be able to refine it by wrapping fine emery cloth around the end of a straight-edge (to keep it level across the surface), then use the Scotch-brite to blend it in with the original finish.

    My point being, I did it for years across wide, highly reflective surfaces. That small area on that pistol would be easy to do; no need for a milling machine.

  10. #10
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    I did not take your comments negatively. I do appreciate any tips posted here on how to do it better. It will help not only me but the next guy who wants to attempt this.
    You are right about the horizontal machining lines on the frame (or grain as it might be called). I tried the stoning and it mimicked the lines very well. I just wish I could have gotten my welds to be tighter and with less pin holes. I checked on a gas upgrade for my welder before I did this but it was quite expensive at around $350 so I had to pass on that.
    Tokarev half cock notch: It was good enough for Russia, China, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Yugoslavia... It's good enough for me!

  11. #11
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    You will get a much cleaner weld with the gas...it is worth saving up for if you do much welding.

  12. #12
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    I do not have a TIG or a MIG welder, if i did I would be filling in my safety holes also. The ad on safety on the Tokarevs are bad idea.

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    Quote Originally Posted by packrat1 View Post
    The ad on safety on the Tokarevs are bad idea.
    Most if not all here would agree. They were added in order to meet importation requirements. Yes, most if not all here would agree those importation requirements as applied to this sort of weapon are a bad idea, or at least poorly thought out.

    Ideally the importers would have drilled a tiny pinhole, and stuck a barely-functioning but passable little plastic "safety" onto the pistol, so that when we (easily) remove it we'd have a tiny little hole to plug with a bit of solder (or not). Second best would have been to install a decent safety. Instead, we got a barely-functioning, sometimes malfunctioning, allegedly dangerous LARGE safety with a new slide cutout and a FRIGGIN' HUGE hole.

    I applaud all experiments conducted, especially those with candid progress reports and photographs posted, in the great cruffler effort to "plug the damned hole." I'd love to just leave a little hole alone, but said hole is, as stated supra, FRIGGIN' HUGE. Most of the welding solutions I've seen so far just don't do it for me, except for one which erased the hole, albeit after a lot of work and a refinishing. I don't want to erase or refinish, I just want to plug the damned hole. So far I like my bit of tapered brass dowel idea, and I'd love to see someone else experiment with it and let their Tok be the guinea pig.

  14. #14
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    Did you have a problem with the grip coming loose after you removed the safety? If so, how did you fix it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by One Two Bravo View Post
    So far I like my bit of tapered brass dowel idea,
    How big is the hole? If its around 1/4", the mosaic pins that I and other custom knife makers use could be a nice solution. They definitely wouldn't look original, but they'd look a lot better than several other methods I can think of.

    Here are some examples of what i'm talking about... http://www.texasknife.com/vcom/index.php?cPath=883

    And if the hole is bigger than 1/4", you may be able to make your own. Most bladesmiths that make they're own find an appropriate sized O.D. tubing, then "pack" the mosaic pattern themselves using colored epoxies to fill in, and hold the design together. They generally come in 6" to 12" long sticks, and you just cut off whatever thickness you need.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by One Two Bravo View Post
    Most if not all here would agree. They were added in order to meet importation requirements. Yes, most if not all here would agree those importation requirements as applied to this sort of weapon are a bad idea, or at least poorly thought out.

    Ideally the importers would have drilled a tiny pinhole, and stuck a barely-functioning but passable little plastic "safety" onto the pistol, so that when we (easily) remove it we'd have a tiny little hole to plug with a bit of solder (or not). Second best would have been to install a decent safety. Instead, we got a barely-functioning, sometimes malfunctioning, allegedly dangerous LARGE safety with a new slide cutout and a FRIGGIN' HUGE hole.

    I applaud all experiments conducted, especially those with candid progress reports and photographs posted, in the great cruffler effort to "plug the damned hole." I'd love to just leave a little hole alone, but said hole is, as stated supra, FRIGGIN' HUGE. Most of the welding solutions I've seen so far just don't do it for me, except for one which erased the hole, albeit after a lot of work and a refinishing. I don't want to erase or refinish, I just want to plug the damned hole. So far I like my bit of tapered brass dowel idea, and I'd love to see someone else experiment with it and let their Tok be the guinea pig.
    yes my safety malfunctions, its got to go.....and yes I too think it is dangerous.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by PRIMO1 View Post
    Did you have a problem with the grip coming loose after you removed the safety? If so, how did you fix it?
    I use a Hogue Handall sleeve grip on my Tokarevs to keep the grips in place. They fit great.

  18. #18
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    I still have the stock grips on mine and no problems at all. I still have the two holes in the side of my pistol...for some strange reason I did not think that a full auto pistol was that good of an idea.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by cherokee_140 View Post
    for some strange reason I did not think that a full auto pistol was that good of an idea.
    I assume it didn't handle quite as well as a Glock 18?...

    The last AR-15 I had was a bone-stock Bushmaster Varminter with the two stage Match trigger. Brand new out of the box it would double-tap at least once out of every magazine. I had a few three round bursts out of it too, so the unintentional full-auto thing definitely isn't limited to old guns.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by PRIMO1 View Post
    Did you have a problem with the grip coming loose after you removed the safety? If so, how did you fix it?
    The grip fit just as well as it did before. I believe the grip was cut to clear the safety lever, not to keep it in place so on my example, it did not touch. For a future project I will attempt to fill the cutout in the grip with black epoxy and file it down to it's original configuration.
    Tokarev half cock notch: It was good enough for Russia, China, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Yugoslavia... It's good enough for me!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by seanpmc69 View Post
    How big is the hole? If its around 1/4", the mosaic pins that I and other custom knife makers use could be a nice solution. They definitely wouldn't look original, but they'd look a lot better than several other methods I can think of.
    I think that would look good. The only problem I can see with it is it can't be much thicker than the frame or the center of the rod will interfere with the trigger movement or hammer group fitment and it will need to have most of the center cut out of it.
    My first experiment with this type of safety hole repair was with a Century imported Russian tok 12 years ago. As soon as I got it, the safety fell out so I drove a roll pin in the hole (it was much smaller than the Yugo hole). I then found out that the roll pin acted like a safety in in the "S" position all the time so I had to dremel out a section in the middle of the roll pin so the back of the trigger would clear it.



    Last edited by PolishRon; 06-29-2011 at 10:56 AM. Reason: added pictures
    Tokarev half cock notch: It was good enough for Russia, China, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Yugoslavia... It's good enough for me!

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by PolishRon View Post
    I think that would look good. The only problem I can see with it is it can't be much thicker than the frame or it will interfere with the trigger movement or hammer group fitment.
    You can cut a slice off however thick you need it to be. The mosaic pattern goes all the way through the 12" stick. That was just an idea based on jjk308's suggestion of using a plug and epoxy though. I know that most military collectors aren't going to want anything "custom" looking on their guns.

    I would rather have the mosaic than a bare hole, but if I was serious about restoring the gun to it's original appearance, I would weld it up, get the finish matched as close as possible, then have it re-blued.

  23. #23
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    good photos, I see how that would work, I think I would use a steel rod of the right dia. made on the lathe, and cut out in the center to clear the trigger.

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