MG53 Restoration disassembly/assembly question

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SBGgunnerUK
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MG53 Restoration disassembly/assembly question

Post by SBGgunnerUK »

Hi guys.

Admittedly it’s been a while since I’ve been on here. I’m hoping there’s still activity from your good selves so I can pick your collective brains...
I have a very ugly M53 Lafette laden with packing grease that I’d dearly like to attempt to turn into a passable copy of a wartime era MG42 Lafette.
I know I’ll need to totally disassemble, remove the grease, strip back the Yugo paint, re-paint with Oxidrot then Dunkelgelb, replace the canvas pads with leather, then re-assemble.

The question I have is: can any of you fine fellows help me out with a definitive guide on how to disassemble/re-assemble and what tools/parts I may need...? I’ve had a bit of a look on here, but couldn’t find anything definitive.

Any help you could give greatly received guys.
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Re: MG53 Restoration disassembly/assembly question

Post by JBaum »

Depends on how detailed of a description you want for disassembly/assembly of the lafette. There was a manual that showed the basics with exploded parts diagrams for the lafette, but I haven't seen that in quite a few years. The Yugo Model 53 armorer's repair manual I translated goes into great detail about the lafette, far better than anything the Germans put out or anything else.

The bad part is that I spent almost 3 months getting it into English from it's original Serbo-Croatian, so I don't sell it for $10. The ad for the manual is pasted below. The last two pictures linked show two sample pages of the lafette section.

Yugoslavia M53/MG42 Armorer's Manual - Yugoslavia Military Issue
Mitraljez i Puskomitraljez 7.9 mm M53 i M42 - Heavy and Light Machine Gun 7.9 mm M53 and MG42. I now have the 1963 dated Yugoslavian Army manual for M53/MG42 repair in English. This is a VERY detailed manual (186 pages) and includes exploded views of all the parts for the disassembly/assembly/repair of the gun, for the lafette (including the searching fire device), and for the belt loader. This is an exceptionally good manual with detailed information not found in any of the other manuals for the M53/MG42, or anywhere else for that matter.
The bad part is that it was written in Serbo-Croatian (Yugoslav), so it took a lot of time to translate it.
After 10 weeks, I have it in English. No, you can't just type it into Google translator and have it make sense. I tried it, and most of the result is not even close to usable. I had to buy dictionaries and learn some Serbo-Croation for this one, then sit with the gun, the lafette, and the belt loader in pieces to make sure I got it right, then translate and clean up all the illustrations, and since it is twice the size of most manuals (186 pages), this translation was a lot of work. This has 186 full size (8.5 x 11") pages, bound with a plastic comb so that it lays flat when you read it. See the table of contents and sample pages below. Foreign orders are welcome, email me for the extra cost for postage.
This manual is currently available ONLY from GermanManuals.com
Please reference"Yugo M53 Repair" on your order.
$42 - includes priority mail for US addresses.

https://www.germanmanuals.com/images/YugoM53-0-org.jpg
https://www.germanmanuals.com/images/YugoM53-0.jpg
https://www.germanmanuals.com/images/YugoM53-1a.jpg
https://www.germanmanuals.com/images/YugoM53-1b.jpg
https://www.germanmanuals.com/images/YugoM53-38.jpg
https://www.germanmanuals.com/images/YugoM53-42.jpg
https://www.germanmanuals.com/images/YugoM53-70.jpg
https://www.germanmanuals.com/images/YugoM53-78.jpg
John@German<remove this>Manuals.com

http://www.GermanManuals.com
SBGgunnerUK
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Re: MG53 Restoration disassembly/assembly question

Post by SBGgunnerUK »

Nice! As ever, you’re a gentleman and scholar, John.
I’ll fire you an email and get it on order to go with the rest of manuals I’ve got from you. Expect it by tomorrow...
Further to this, any real-time lessons/tips/tricks you or anyone else still on here (wait a minute, does anyone else even still use this forum?) learned whilst restoring their own Lafette would be greatly appreciated.
I see there was a great post on here written by a guy called Tom on repainting his and putting it back together. Unfortunately a few years back now, but the fellow hasn’t re-posted since, like, 2018. Such a pity. Would love to pick his brains...
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Re: MG53 Restoration disassembly/assembly question

Post by JBaum »

There is actually quite a bit of traffic on here from unregistered users, but the answers to most questions are already here, so it's used as more of a database for information than chatting. There might be 5 registered users per day, but there are 30-40 guests (unregistered users). It's busy, but it doesn't show in the message bases.

As I write this reply, there are 6 guest users on here now, but I'm the only one registered. Some boards require being registered before you can read the message bases. I don't do that. Information is best when it's spread freely. With the manuals, I often answer questions without simply telling someone to buy a manual. In your case, you NEED the manual and all it's information. With 180+ pages, that's a lot of information.

Many of the original builders on here have moved on to other guns, or moved away from building guns completely. The lack of parts kits available and the limited scope of this board has reduced its use, especially of the message bases, but it still provides a lot of information that is read by the gues users.
John@German<remove this>Manuals.com

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Re: MG53 Restoration disassembly/assembly question

Post by SBGgunnerUK »

Outstanding that the site is still live. All this collected knowledge! It would for sure be a travesty if the site was ever shut down...
Have just sent you an email re:payment for the aforementioned manual
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Re: MG53 Restoration disassembly/assembly question

Post by 42rocker »

Good Luck with the rebuild.

Stay Safe

Later 42rocker
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