The Health and Safety and Don't Sue Us Warning
We at 230Grain write these articles because we're a bunch of amateurs writers who enjoy screaming at the internet. We don't actually own anything and we highly suggest you don't follow our instructions because we're mostly retarded. That said, all of these writings are for informational purposes and if you kill yourself, ruin your guns, set your house on fire, maim your neighbor, or do anything else that is generally considered bad, don't sue us because we aren't responsible for what you do. Also, use common sense. If something seems like it is dangerous, a bad idea, unsafe, or generally stupid, don't do it.
It is also important to maintain the correct parts count and obey all rules related to 18 USC 922(r), since we will be using a Romanian VFG as our base material. Due to the fact nobody has sought clarification on this kind of project before we are assuming that the SF FAG does not contribute to the US Parts count for 18 USC 922(r), As such we recommend that you do not count the SF FAG towards your U.S. manufactured parts count because going to jail over a cheap part just isn't cool. Remember 18 USC 922(r) applies to individuals as well as manufacturers, and nobody wants to go to jail. Also, we're not lawyers and this isn't a legal opinion or anything.
Oh and just in case you haven't figured it out, this modification will ruin a precious piece of Romanian history and is 100% irreversible. If you don't want to see a precious Romanian wooden vertical forward grip destroyed please exit the thread now.
Do you want to be TactiCOOL but own a plain jane AK and can't justify dumping a ton of money into fancy railed furniture that only makes your gun heavier? Don't mind using a wood saw, rasp, sand paper, and a healthy amount of swearing? Looking to enhance the ergonomics of your tactical combat platform and knock the socks off of all of your AR-15 toting buddies? Sad that the Magpul Marketing Monstrosity forgot about the AK market? Perhaps you want to check out the Shark Fin Forward Angled Grip (SF FAG) as a viable option for enhancing your tactical combat platform.
Don't be left out of the rifle modification market and don't give up that traditional AK look to appease the fanboys. You too can have an angled grip of your own similar to in concept to (though older than) the MAGPUL AWESOME FUCKING GRIP. If you're thrifty and shop around for the source material you can bring the entire project in for well under the cost of the MAGPUL AWESOMELY FANTASTIC GRIP and have some extras left over. Of course it depends on what you already have in the form of wood working equipment and how much you care about the appearance of the final product.
Minimum Tools and Materials
Romanian Wooden Vertical Fore Grip
Heavy grit sand paper
Rasp or a lot of patience
Permanent marker or paint marker
Additional useful Materials and / or Tools
Fine Grit Sand Paper
The basic concept of the SF FAG (Shark Fin Forward Angled Grip) was born in 2006 when I met with a VERY TACTICAL OPERATOR who had just returned from a tour overseas and he showed me a fancy setup he had used on his secret squirrel AK that involved a railed forearm and a half grip. Pretty swank but far too tactical for me. As many of you know I like to keep most of my guns in a relatively practical configuration. (Some of you might disagree with my definition of practical but that's a debate for another day).
In 2008 I ended up building up 3 AKs based on Romanian G-Code kits which included a bunch of wooden VFGs that wound up in a parts bin. After a month of sitting in a bin being mostly useless I recalled the extra super duper tactical AK with the half grip and started thinking about how to tacticalize one of my AKs and I remembered the VFGs in my parts bin. Well, one thing lead to another, and I found myself hacking together the SF FAG Mk. 1
The first SF FAG! Wowee!
Now I'm sure you're all excited to get started, so lets get started!
Here is your Shark Fin Angled Forward Grip Canvas.
Step 1: The first step after acquiring your Romanian VFG is to pick the VFG up with whatever hand generally holds your rifle's forearm. You'll want to hold it in a manner such as the one shown above (the typical half grip) and mark a little below your pinky. You'll want a little extra room in case you decide to wear gloves or hand the rifle off to someone with some massive meat hooks. Now would be a good time to chemically remove the finish using a paint stripper if you're planning on going that route.
Step 2: Slap that bad boy in a vise and hack away. Do your best to keep cutting in a straight line if you're an idiot like myself and opt to not use a jig.
Step 3: BAM you cut it off. Woo! Now it's time to clean that cut up and give your grip that shark fin look. Go ahead and use whatever method you're comfortable with to profile the back side of the "fin." Be sure to check for magazine clearance before you call it quits, otherwise you'll look pretty dumb when you go to show off to your friends for the first time and you completely bungle the magazine change. There's also a strong possibility that the VFG might be too "tight" for your receiver. That's why you brought along the rasp. Simply trim a little of wherever the VFG is binding in your receiver until it fits. The front portion of the forearm may need some cleaning up as well but that's something that you will need to figure out.
Step 4: Now if I was a lazier man I'd just leave this alone and go about my day, but I decided to pretty things up, and of course I got ahead of myself. I'm not sure how aircraft paint stripper is on laminate but its about the only thing Ive found that consistently removes that crap besides sand paper. Of course I didn't want to find out how had that paint stripper is on the glue that hold the laminate together so I opted to use sand 60 grit, then 200 grit sandpaper. If you removed the finish early on you'll just follow whatever technique you want to finish the wood.
Step 5: Finish the wood however you please. I'm opting for a good old fashioned boiled linseed oil finish on this one which is destined for an internet friend. Should you choose to oil the wood, it may expand and require further fitting--so don't let that rasp get too far away.
That's basically all there is to the Shark Fin Forward Angled Grip. Watch your fingers on the forearm because the SF FAG doesn't leave much (if any) room between your fingers and the forearm locking piece. If your hands don't fit you might want to invest in some gloves on days where you know your gun is going to see a bit of use. Otherwise you might end up with a lovely reminder that yes, firing a lot of bullets generates a lot of heat.