So many of the builds on this forum are near perfection from incredibly talented Gunsmiths. I thought you all might enjoy a build that's the complete opposite! I'm not a Gunsmith and I'm not a machinist but I've got guns, I've got machines, and I use to live next door to the Smiths'. I've got a Norinco that I bought specifically to play around with some of the things I see on this forum and others. It was cheap but it shot good but I'm totally willing to take the chance that I'll ruin it in the process. I was going to document it as I went along and then do a post all at once but that changed once I started making mistakes. It dawned on me that there's probably a lot of people that are like me who want to try but are reluctant that I could help them decide which way to go. Instead of trying to hide the mistakes I've made I'm going to shine a light on them so others can hopefully learn the bad as well as the good. I'm going to do this as I go along so that I can post what I'm thinking during the process. Feel free to post comments you won't hurt my feelings. The Norc: The Mill: The Lathe: The first thing I did and the only thing I didn't screw up so far was to mill out the old rear sight. Then we did some ball cuts and beveled the slide. This is where I started making rookie mistakes. I only looked at one side and the original ball cut looked pretty good. I went ahead and cut both sides the same length and was disappointed when the opposite side was way off. I exaggerated this picture a bit to give you an idea of what it looked like. I forgot to snap an actual pic when it happened. You can also see mistake #2 in this pic where I forgot to lock the spindle and "Y" axis when I beveled the slide and the cutter dug in. I cleaned it up a little bit by making the bevel bigger than I wanted it but I'm going to have to live with what's there I think. I was able to file the dust cover and get the lines pretty close. I also had a lot of chatter in my cuts that were a lot harder to remove than I thought they would be. I learned that a file can save you a lot of hand work with the sand paper. I'm going to have to adjust the gibs on my mill and see if I can tighten things up a little. I was originally going to flat top the slide but I think I'm going to change my mind and leave it as is. I think I may try a "French Border" after I tighten up the mill a bit. What I have found out is that this requires a lot of money, time, patience, and experience. I'm enjoying myself regardless of the final product and I'm learning a lot about machining and set-up. It's hockey season so time is limited but if there's interest in the thread I'll continue to post as I continue my journey.