How to Remove the Muzzle Brake From an SKS

by Ryan Maxwell

The SKS (Samozaryadniy Karabin sistemi Simonova) is a Russian-designed rifle developed in 1945 by Sergei Gavrilovich Simonov. It fires a 7.62x39mm round. Since it was originally designed, multiple variants have been developed in various countries. The Chinese Type 56, Yugoslavian PAP, Romanian SKS, Albanian SKS, East German SKS, North Vietnamese SKS and the North Korean SKS are all based on the original Simonov design. The Yugoslavian variant is the only model equipped with a 22mm grenade launcher attached to the end of the barrel. This grenade launcher is commonly mistaken for a flash suppressor or muzzle brake. Removal is an uncomplicated process and can be done without specialized tools.

Unload the rifle. Never attempt to perform maintenance on a loaded rifle.

Disassemble the rifle. This will make it easier to maneuver the barrel while you are removing the launcher attachment. It will also reduce the chances of damage to the stock.

Remove the retention pin in the launcher attachment. The pin can be removed using the pin punch and a hammer. If you find that the pin is not moving easily, use a lubricant.

Heat the launcher with a propane torch. This will cause the metal of the launcher to expand and break any debris loose, making it easier to unscrew. Do not heat the launcher so long that it begins to turn red. Keep the flame on the launcher. Do not heat the barrel directly.

Allow the launcher to cool down. Once it is cool enough to handle, attach the pipe wrench to the launcher and turn it counter-clockwise to unscrew it. If marring of the launcher is a concern, You can use a scrap piece of heavy fabric or leather to minimize damage.

Reassemble your SKS once the grenade launcher is successfully removed.

Items you will need

  • Pin punch
  • Hammer
  • Propane torch
  • Pipe wrench

About the Author

Ryan Maxwell began his professional freelance writing career in 2009. He is a former U.S. Army military police officer, as well as a published poet and photographer. While attending Finlandia University, Maxwell majored in criminal justice with a minor in English studies. Ryan is also very skilled in computer maintenance, upgrade and repair with almost 20 years of experience.