Shutting Your Trap

This short tutorial describes how to fix a stuck "Buttstock Trap Door Cover"

Romanian Finger Trap?

If you are new to AK's you might wonder what the function of that “Chinese Finger Trap” in the buttstock of your WASR "Sports Rifle" is all about. Let us end all speculation right here; It’s a spring loaded compartment for your cleaning and maintenance kit.

Unfortunately, the spring that closes the trap door on the WASR is very weak. If it meets any friction it will lock up faster than the brakes on a Porsche in sight of a speed trap. Combine that with a communist built hinge and corrosion that has built up since before the Cuban missile crisis and you have a "sticky" trap door that may, or may not close after it's opened.

Even if your hatch does close properly, it's probably five minutes well spent to take it apart and clean it.

Up and Out!

Nothing to say really, use a flat head screw driver (or the tool from your cleaning kit) to undo the two screws that hold your buttstock plate on.
AK-47 Cleaning Kit
Figure 1: Removing the Romanian Finger Trap

Thoroughly clean and lubricate the trap door hinge and spring. You are bound to find some Cold War corrosion in there. We had to use lost of WD-40 to get the rust off. Notice that the spring is weaker than a Middle Eastern democracy.

Since the hinge is constructed poorly you can probably help reduce friction by "widening" it a little. Just bend the other parts out so that the center portion can move freely. We used a screw driver and a hammer because we are subtle like that.
AK-47 Cleaning Kit
Figure 2: Widening the Hinge

Screw the buttstock plate back on and insert the cleaning kit (if you have one). Make sure you have your fingernail pointed to the closest screw, unless of course you want to find out why it is called "The Romanian Finger Trap".
AK-47 Cleaning Kit
Figure 3: Bend over and cough please. Yeah, that's it. Yeah...