Firearm Manufacturing Processes in Russian “Molot” Plant (Video)

About a month ago, Russian Molot arms plant has released a video showing their premises and the processes they use to manufacture firearms. Just recently they added English subtitles to that video. So let’s watch it and discuss some of the interesting processes shown in the video.

The most interesting and somewhat mysterious process to me is what they call “energy-chemical” polishing of the bore in an acid solution. It is done after the magnetic particle inspection (MPI) of drilled barrel blanks and right before rifling those blanks on a cold hammer forging machine.

Also, note that those parts which don’t work under extreme pressure and thrust (like the gas block or front sight block), are made by casting. However, bolts are made via machining a forging. As you know, usage of cast parts instead of machined forgings was (maybe still is) a problem with some US made AKs leading to sheared off locking lugs, cracked front trunnions and mushroomed bolt carrier group tails.

AK-style bolt forgings

As with any other gun company, rich history and traditions mean little to nothing if you want to survive in the modern market. You have to combine the skills and experience with modern designing methods and manufacturing processes and equipment. Looks like Molot did this merger pretty well.

Hrachya H

Being a lifelong firearms enthusiast, Hrachya always enjoys studying design, technology and history of guns and ammunition. His knowledge of Russian allows him to translate and make Russian/Soviet/Combloc small arms related information available for the English speaking audience.
Should you need to contact him, feel free to shoot him a message at


  • noob

    Wait, which american manufacturer has sheared bolt lugs due to using castings??

    • Steve Truffer

      Century RAS iirc.

      • Twilight sparkle

        You’re not wrong you just didn’t include inter ordnance

        • Ashdreg

          Thanks, Purple Smart

    • micmac80

      You have plenty even with forged bolts shearing.

  • Haulin’ Oats

    You can clearly hear the pride of the narrator as he talks about Russian guns made from leftover bicycle parts.

    • Artyom

      “Here at Armory Station, we make guns out of what used to be two-wheeled human-powered vehicles, but do you know what’s better than guns? Knawledge.
      K N A W L E D G E

      Look at this Great Library. I read one book everyday, because that’s how important KNAWLEDGE is to me.

      • Micheal Unrau
      • SP mclaughlin

        Save your bullets, Artyom!

        • iksnilol

          The feeling when I saved my bullets all game… then I get to the last level and realize I COULD HAVE SHOT 400 OF THE GOOD BULLETS!?

          • SP mclaughlin

            Rain down riches from Ostankino Tower!

          • Wow!

            I painted ground zero on the dark ones. No regrets.

      • Tp

        I know its your Russian accent making it come out that way, but it is spelled KNOWLEDGE

  • datimes

    Subtitles would have been nice.

    • Green Hell

      There are. You can turn them on.

      • datimes


  • Mark-in-Indy

    Is the SKS still in production? Or, is the VPO-208 just a rebarreled arsenal gun?

    • Green Hell

      Normal SKS rifles are sold by Molot in Russia too, not produced, but refinished surplus guns with side optic rails and treaded barrels.

  • Jordan Bowles

    The “somewhat mysterious process to me is what they call “energy-chemical” polishing” is better known as electropolishing. It’s sort of the opposite of electroplating.

  • SGT Fish

    well, all sks’s were well made. and the first one I bought in 2007 for $90 was brand new.

  • int19h

    Legally .366 TKM guns would be considered shotguns in US also, since all that matters is that it’s smoothbore.

    It’s just that the distinction matters less here for ownership. However. some states restrict hunting to shotguns only, so it might make some sense even here.

  • Doom

    The AK existed for 50 years before the fall of the Iron Curtain. The solidworks just makes it a little easier.

  • Sledgecrowbar

    What is that sexy beast at 5:05?

  • CavScout

    No they don’t.