I have always liked the gray look of the USR and finally got around to picking a stock set up. The tough part really seemed to be finding a stock kit for sale which included the gray front grip. Next challenge was removing the weird plastic piece behind the grip so it would look respectable my AUG A1. It turns out the stock material of the AUG is quite simple to cut with a hand saw, it’s quite hard and doesn’t gum up the blade like some other plastics will.
Once it’s rough cut out the best way to get it contoured down is with a Dremel sanding wheel, it’s a good balance of material removal that is neither too fast or slow so you get it done but won’t accidentally dig a big gouge. Once it’s to the 90% vicinity I chose to finish it off with a hand file to smooth it down evenly. The only remaining issue I have is that surface does not look visually the same as the remainder of the stock. I experimented with a few things including a buffing wheel and also a brush attachment on the dremel. Though it smoothed it out somewhat and made it look slightly closer it ultimately didn’t match. Fortunately it’s not in a particularly obvious area and is not too bothersome to me.
Next step was to swap out the barrel grip which turned out surprisingly difficult. After first step was popping the bottom grip cap up and disconnecting the spring which was easy enough. This releases the tension of the spring in the groove of the pin which retains the grip and hypothetically should make removal of the pin simple. Reality is that the pin may require a solid hit from a punch to get loose.
Various small bits such as a black barrel release lever and charging handle were ordered from Pete Athens. While it’s occasionally possible to find some parts cheaper elsewhere Pete is hands down the best source for AUG stuff. Swapping the charging handle is simply a matter of punching out a roll pin and replacing the assembly. The barrel release lever proved a bit more challenging as it is a small standard screw which is secured with Loctite. To achieve maximum grip on the screw I found it necessary to grind a screwdriver to fit. Initially I tried heating the screw / barrel locking lug with a soldering iron however that proved insufficient and I ended up hitting it with a fine tipped propane torch for a few seconds which broke it loose. Without a fitted screwdriver and sufficient heat it would be very easy to bugger up the screw head. When reassembling I chose to use medium strength Loctite.
While I was at it I went ahead and added a bayonet lug to my 16″ barrel just because it seemed like I should order one up while I’m placing an order with Pete Athens. This creates additional hassle as I now have to remove the flash hider and then get it back to perfect alignment to preserve the look. Only after I do this do I realize that the front grip doesn’t quite fold up all the way as it hits the bayo lug. It also means I am now on the lookout for a black AUG bayonet as my green bayonet just doesn’t match with the grey and black color scheme.
Now that it’s all back together I’m pretty happy with the overall look…. I forgot to take a pic when it was all together earlier but one will be coming soon.
A follow on project was fitting my AUG “kit” into a Pelican 1600 just to have most of it together in one place. The general idea was to arrainge the bits according to how often I use them. The 24″ LMG barrel fit diagonally across the bottom with left hand bolt and a dozen magazines.
Next layer added shell catcher, 20″ barrel, bayonet, cleaning kit and basic spare parts set along with a couple mags. I really don’t care for the pre cut foam as it tends to come apart much too easily. To counter this layer falling apart I used spray on glue to affix a sheet of felt to the bottom of this section.
Top layer holds the stock/receiver, 16″ barrel, four mags, sling and a couple boxes of earplugs. The section on the lower left that seems blank isn’t really useable as the thickness of the shell catcher on the layer below required cut out of the foam on the bottom of this foam to fit.
Obviously the overall kit isn’t color matching as gray USR grips aren’t available and I haven’t brought myself to buy black ones. Pete Athens is out of black bayonets at the moment and as far as I can tell there aren’t any shell catchers other than green.