Disassembly Of A Yugoslavian M72 RPK Using The GS-0003-A, -B, -C Toolset

The photographs in this tutorial are provided by a fellow enthusiast and customer who helped develop this tool as I did not have a working example of this rifle on hand. His goal was to safely remove a worn-out barrel and replace it with a new unit.

Removal Of The Front Sight Block

This particular rifle did not have a bipod installed before disassembly, but the GS-0003 has a slot specifically sized to remove the bipod if thus equipped. The GS-0003 in this case is placed under the front sight block to support it as it is being pressed off.

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Removal Of The Gas Block

The Yugoslavian M72 has a gas block assembly that is a serious challenge to safely remove since it has “ears” that contain the sling swivel. A similar gas block design is found on the Yugoslavian M70 as well as the milled Bulgarian AK 7,62 x 39,0 rifle. The additional tool GS-0003-B is a split sleeve that is designed to support the gas block at the “ears” and allow it to be safely pressed off. This tool is held in place with a simple worm clamp. The additional tool GS-0003-C is a simple 5/8″ x 5/8″ x 6″ steel bar that provides additional support for this delicate operation.

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Removal Of The Rear Sight Block

The Yugoslavian M72 has a narrow space between the rear sight block and the breech block that provides little room for good support while removing the rear sight block. The GS-0003 has a counterbored slot to accommodate this narrow space and provide critical support.

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 Removal Of The Breech Block

For most builds the breech block is removed from the rifle in order to perform needed repairs or set headspacing with a new barrel or bolt, etc. and that is the example provided here. The barrel could be removed from the breech block while it is assembled with the receiver but this would require the use of a barrel pushing tool that is not shown here. The counterbored slot is the one used for this purpose and the GS-0003 is flipped over in these photographs.

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 The Demilled RPK Shown In Parts Form With The GS-0003-A, -B, -C

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Reassembly Of The Barrel Components

In these photographs one can see the reassembly of the barrel. In the first photograph a breech block support tool is shown, and I do not sell this tool since there are plenty of good units available from other works. After initial installation of the barrel into the breech block the bolt is headspaced to the breech end of the barrel and the barrel is pinned in place. I do not cover those steps here as that is a separate tutorial all its own.

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 Before And After Photographs

The GS-0003 was used to install all of the blocks on the new barrel and the rifle was restored to its original functionality. It it perhaps not necessary to show the steps used to install the new barrel and all of the blocks since those steps follow a similar procedure required for removal. Below you can see the demilled rifle (without a bipod) and the restored rifle with the bipod that is normally found on the RPK series.

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