View Full Version : Need input on what is but cant be regarding CETME.

September 23, 2016, 21:13
Hi guys, i have what appears to be a unique issue with a cetme i bought years ago.

The bolt gap is like at.. ..045 if i remember right,gap should be .013-.02x ,with the sweet spot supposedly .019 ,again if i remember right.
I am going to send it to fairfax gunsmithing back east to fix the gap (there is no hole in the receive to punch the pin out to get the barrel out. I spoke to the guy who runs the place,says he used to repair the cai guns and can properly drill the receiver to get to the pin and regap the bolt,fix the rifle. I am also going to have the front triple tree readjusted (shoots to correct elevation and groups well BUTT LIKE 10" TO THE RIGHT at 100.

So that is the overview,here is the weird,
Even with the huge gap,it shoots fine,ejects fine,no issues with swollen cases no malfunctions, and recoil is not bad. I was told it should not even fire or function right.Neither the bolt or carrier are ground down, the lockup is tight,the rollers are fully seated,etc..

i did not know about the cai bolt gap issues for a while. I did buy a brand new nos bolt locking piece,"the wedge" from spain,no change,changed out the rollers to --4 and it did change a little but nowhere near enough. The place i got the rollers from said they could redo the rifle BUT THE ISSUE IS THE TRUNNION IS SEAM WELDED AROUND THE FRONT OF THE RECEIVER. The receiver seems to be stainless? Rifle is painted or powder coated a satin black. So my options are limited.

Ergo wise not the best but hell i paid 325 for it with 6 20rd cetme mags like...10 ?yrs ago.

I guess the bottom line is i would like your opinions and thoughts,any feedback about fairfax arms,gunsmithing,etc..The guy seems to be completely familiar with the issues and how the trunnion was welded in,no access hole for barrel pin issue.

Thx in advance!:whiskey:

September 24, 2016, 20:13
I've read your post a couple of times and I'm still not sure exactly what it is you are asking. But I'll play anyway.

A rifle with a way out of spec gap like yours will still function, you know this now. The bolt would have to be completely unlocked for it to fail to fire.
A bolt gap that large isn't conducive to long life of the rifle. Bolt velocity and battering of the stock metal and buffer must be problem. Roller dents in the rails are or would eventually be a problem also.
There are a few things that would cause the gap to be so large, it would just take someone with experience to figure out which one is the issue. Burrs and debris come to mind as does a ground bolt head and over sized rollers. The depth of the trunnion in the receiver has zero to do with the bolt gap so that it's welded in around the front is moot. The kicker is the barrel pin hole. Not impossible to fix, just inconvenient.
If there are no problems with the roller pockets in the trunnion, rollers are good, locking piece is good, bolt head is not ground or milled down, then the barrel will have to be pressed in further. This means milling a hole in the receiver, driving out the pin, pressing out the barrel, removing the triple tree, reindexing the barrel and pressing to the correct bolt gap, milling a new hole for the pin, driving in the pin, and reinstalling the triple tree. Which would also correct the off the chart windage problem you have.

So not a small problem to fix though doable. Depending on your "smith" it may cost more than you paid for the rifle. Worth it? Only you can decide, your rifle. I've never heard of Fairfax Arms so can't help there.

My opinion is it's not worth it. I've seen very few CETME rifles that I'd be willing to spend money on but there are a few out there, some very nicely put together early CAI rifles. I keep an eye out for them. If yours is the typical HESSE looking receiver with gaping gaps on the trunnion/rail welds and melted spaghetti looking weld around the entire front of the receiver/trunnion join I'd pass it along and call it good.
Unless of course you are in love with the gun and will keep it and love it and cherish it until death do you part. Then by all means, by it some new boobs and get to lovin' and cherishin'.:biggrin::shades:

September 24, 2016, 22:11
Thanks for the reply HKS..

I have taken a very close look at the rifle and tried to get in any area possible to clean it in the trunnion area. There are no apparent dents,weird wear spots,gouges,grooves,etc in the trunnion area,roller lockup detents(?) look good,have taken the bolt assy apart and nothing looks weird. Also again,whole bcg assy has the same type of finish nothing off color. I even compared it to another bolt at the shop I went to,length looked identical.

As for the tilted triple tree,I think I measured like.006 or so off which does not seem much but over 300' it can make an amazing amount of drift on the bullets path. It has been a long time since I did the math... I did not think it could make that big a difference since lookin at it,it looks fine.. So unless the bore is not concentric with the outside of the barrel. I guess I can try sticking a rod down the bore and see if it is cockeyed. I thought I had done this:confused:

I guess the way I look at it is,the place will charge me 200.00 to fix the boltgap and sight issues so I am willing to give it a shot. I wont get shit for it as it sits with the issues so there.

If it had hk type rear sight I could adjust it out... If I could mount a scope or red dot I would not have to worry about the irons...but I would be ocd since the issue still there..

September 25, 2016, 15:11
I understand the OCD and crooked sight thing.
Could be that the barrel is tweaked a little, too. All else perfect that'll cause it to shoot way off.

If he's only charging you $200 it's worth the fix I think. Get it right then enjoy it.:shades: