Build a Mosin-Nagant Express Rifle

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This is a famous picture of Ernest Hemingway that graces the cover of the book "Hemingway's Guns." As an avid African game hunting, Hemingway always used his Springfield with express V notch sights.

This is a famous picture of Ernest Hemingway that graces the cover of the book “Hemingway’s Guns.” As an avid African game hunting, Hemingway always used his Springfield with express V notch sights.

Resources:
Boyds Gunstocks Mosin-Nagant Classic (with Timney cutout)
http://www.boydsgunstocks.com/mosin
Timney Mosin-Nagant Trigger $108
http://www.timneytriggers.com/mosin-nagant
Mosin-Nagant Sight Adjustment Tool
On Ebay

Most of us think of the Mosin-Nagant as a cheap gun. The rifles are still relatively cheap. The ammo is, again, “cheap” relative to other calibers. And it is a rare day that you go to the range and someone is not there shooting a Mosin just for fun. What many people never realize is that in the world of firearms, it is rare that a gun both **never breaks** and is cheap. But when it comes to using the Mosin outside of the range, for real world applications, there are four problems with the Mosin.

Click on the picture to see a larger version of my finished rifle.

Click on the picture to see a larger version of my finished Mosin-Nagant Express Rifle.

  1. There is no manual safety.
  2. The trigger sucks.
  3. The accuracy is battle quality and acceptable for hunting, but not great.
  4. The gun is just plain fugly.

So assuming we can cure those three things, which as you’ll see we can very easily, and roughly at the same price of the gun, why would we want to upgrade a cheap rifle? Two words. Express Rifle!

Surprisingly, you can transform your own rifle without the help of a gunsmith. The cost is under $250.

Surprisingly, you can transform your own rifle without the help of a gunsmith. The cost is under $250.

The term Express Rifle was first used by fine gun maker James Purdy in 1856. It was originally meant to delineate a new class of rifled musket that shot a high velocity heavy bullet for dangerous game hunting in Africa. The Wikipedia page has more if you care to read it, but these days the term Express Rifle generally applies to a heavy caliber weapon with iron sights.

IRON SIGHTS! Blasphemy you say? Well let me share something with you. I love high quality optics as much as the next guy, but they are nearly always the source of failure on failed expensive hunting trips. Any African guide worth his salt will always have at least one backup rifle with iron sights for when the the scope all of a sudden won’t zero, or gets completely smashed.

Resulting accuracy is great with the new Mosin. This is my repeatable 5 shot group at 50 yards with the stock open sights.

Resulting accuracy is great with the new Mosin. This is my repeatable 5 shot group at 50 yards with the stock open sights.

These days, “value” is measured in time as much as dollars for most us. We are all working way too hard to make it in life, and being able to sneak away for a weekend to hunt pigs is just as valuable to us tax slaves as a $200,000 African safari is to the CEOs and bankers, perhaps more valuable. So while I think it is great to save up for a high quality scope for your armchair commando sniper rifle, when you manage to break off time to go plain old deer or pig hunting in terrain that rarely offers a shot over 150 yards, I strongly suggest that you consider an Express Rifle.

Savage and Ruger both make great inexpensive rifles with open sights on them. But if you want something that is bulletproof rugged, and that you already most likely own, it is pretty easy to put a new stock and trigger on a Mosin-Nagant. The result, as you can see, is a gorgeous and elegant rifle that is both bulletproof reliable and reasonably accurate at normal hunting distances.

That is a huge improvement over my original 50 yard groups with the original stock and trigger.

That is a huge improvement over my original 50 yard groups with the original stock and trigger.

I chose a walnut stock from Boyds Gunstocks because of an old picture of Ernest Hemingway that graces the cover of the book “Hemingway’s Guns.” I have included it here and as you can see, Hemingway is shooting his famed 1903 Springfield that was sporterized by Griffin & Howe. You can see that on the left of that receiver, there is a standard Griffin & Howe detachable scope mount, similar to the one that was commissioned for the M1C Sniper Garand. Hemingway never used the scope with that rifle, and he took most of his famous African game with that very rifle, in .30-06 caliber. These days I would never sporterize a 1903 due to the collector potential of the originals, but the Nagant 7.62x54R cartridge is very similar to the .30-06 ballistically, and those rifles are so bastardized already that they will never be worth more than utility value if they have import stamps on them.

Boyds has a lot of different designs and types of wood. This model has a European style raised cheekpiece.

Boyds has a lot of different designs and types of wood. This model has a European style raised cheekpiece.

The rifle you see here that I converted is a hexagonal receiver type that has Century Arms import marks on both the barrel and receiver. It is a nice historical gun, but the collectible value of the gun was sucked out long ago, and it is ripe for converting. Not that the changes I made are not reversible. On this particular gun I had to hammer off the barrel bands, but if I had used one of my guns that had the clip type barrel bands I would be able to return the rifle to standard configuration very easily.

My Boyds stock was $114, and I got it with the Timney Trigger cutout. We first took a look at this $108 trigger when I added it to a Mosin-Nagant sniper rifle, so take a look at that if you would like to see how easy they are to install. For that article I had to cut out the hole for the trigger block, but the Boyds stock comes with everything pre-cut. I didn’t have to inlet the Boyds stock at all. The action just dropped in, and my only difficulty was getting both action bolts in at the same time, because though they visually lined up with the holes in the stock, the actual position was probably a millimeter or two off so I had to jiggle and wiggle the action until I got both screws to grab.

The Timney Trigger cutout is also really well done. You won't find a more elegant rifle at this pricepoint.

The Timney Trigger cutout is also really well done. You won’t find a more elegant rifle at this pricepoint.

The result is staggering. Not only is the rifle gorgeous now. I also have a crisp, light trigger, a manual safety lever that works, and after about 20 rounds of settling the rifle in, I am able to keep 5 rounds into about an inch circle at 50 yards with the stock military sights. For my old eyes that is about as good as I can shoot, which is why I didn’t even try accuracy tests at 100 yards.

I would also like to share with you one of my Mosin scores I found on Ebay some time ago. It is a sight adjustment tool. For under $20, this tool saves you a ton of knocking the sight back and forth with a rubber hammer. I walked the sight over as I settled the gun in to demonstrate how easy and effective this tool is. But beware that it only works with one type of Mosin sight, the one without ears or a hood.

Mosins 91/30 rifles go for $200-$350 these days, depending on demand and condition. Right now demand is pretty low for any guns, so grab one if you can, if you don’t already have one. For about $250 more you can outfit your rifle as a genuine Express Rifle, and we all know that the gun will never break down on you. You’ll have a rifle that you can shoot cheap, that people will ooh and aah over at the range, and that you’ll take home a lifetime of game with. I think building a Mosin-Nagant Express Rifle is a no-brainer.

The barrel is free floated back to the action.

The barrel is free floated back to the action.

This is the tag on the box if you want to just call Boyds.

This is the tag on the box if you want to just call Boyds.

The recoil is definitely more pronounced with the new stock, and the muzzle jumps more, partly because it is now a little lighter at 8 1/4 pounds.

The recoil is definitely more pronounced with the new stock, and the muzzle jumps more, partly because it is now a little lighter at 8 1/4 pounds.

The substantial rubber buttpad takes most of the punishment though. I was able to put several magazines through with no appreciable discomfort.

The substantial rubber buttpad takes most of the punishment though. I was able to put several magazines through with no appreciable discomfort.

I had problems getting my barrel band off, but this gun had zero collectible value regardless. There are import stamps all over it.

I had problems getting my barrel band off, but this gun had zero collectible value regardless. There are import stamps all over it.

These are three styles of barrel bands on the Mosin-Nagant. The one of the left is most common and comes off easy.

These are three styles of barrel bands on the Mosin-Nagant. The one of the left is most common and comes off easy.

This conversion is the hexagonal receiver. The stock fits both round and hex.

This conversion is the hexagonal receiver. The stock fits both round and hex.

One nice thing about Mosins is that the outside metal matches, no matter when or where they were made.

One nice thing about Mosins is that the outside metal matches, no matter when or where they were made.

This is the sight alignment tool in action.

This is the sight alignment tool in action.

Just beware that the tool only fits the front blades with no ears or hood.

Just beware that the tool only fits the front blades with no ears or hood.

While settling the stock in prior to accuracy testing I decided to walk my groups over with the tool to show you how it works.

While settling the stock in prior to accuracy testing I decided to walk my groups over with the tool to show you how it works.

The ammo is Russian Silver Bear, and I've had great luck with it.

The ammo is Russian Silver Bear, and I’ve had great luck with it.

This ammo actually got wet in a shed leak and you can see the corrosion on the case. It still works great!

This ammo actually got wet in a shed leak and you can see the corrosion on the case. It still works great!

{ 270 comments… add one }
  • Tennesseemarksman July 15, 2016, 6:50 pm

    People can do what they want to do with there own property. I, however, would never modify my Mosin. Mine is not even a collectors item, but as far as I’m concerned it is irreplaceable. I don’t understand why everyone says that the Mosin has a crappy trigger. The trigger is as good as any weapon I have ever used. That is the difference between someone who just shoots a weapon and a true marksman; a marksman can be proficient with any weapon he has in his hand. I have personally shot touching groups at 100 yards with my unmodified Mosin with the original sight. I have also put a bullet through a half silhouette target at 600 hundred meters. I’m not bragging, some people are good at shooting and others aren’t. If everyone was good at it everyone would be a marksman. I mean I know my limitations but as a hunting rifle or a combat rifle the Mosin is more than effective in the hands of a decent marksman. If I want a sniper rifle, I’ll just buy an inexpensive .308 or .30/06 and add a good zoom scope. For practical purposes, a M 91/30 that still is in good shape will effectively annihilate any game size animal that you can see with the naked eye. PS: Don’t use this rifle for coyotes with hunting ammo unless you are just wanting them to be torn to pieces.

  • David Bowie December 29, 2015, 8:15 pm

    What in the actual fuck did I just see. I think the apes from the opening scene of Space Odyssey could have done better. Fuck me, too much internet for the entire month.

    • Sirarcherpike December 31, 2015, 12:05 am

      who the hell let this guy right an article, Yeah it wasnt collectible because of “stamps all over it” thanks for ruining another M91 ya D*ck. You just destroyed a Finnish M91, congrats. I hope you burn in hell you Bubba tard

      • okto September 1, 2016, 1:31 pm

        You want him to burn in hell over a 100% reversible mod to his own rifle?
        Your standard for “eternal torture” is making a rifle /look a way you don’t like/?

        You have no character or morals and your opinions should be aggressively ignored out of hand.

  • Rich December 29, 2015, 4:25 pm

    “The Mosin-Nagant has no safety”.

    Really? Is that how well you know the rifle?

    It’s pretty well impossible to take someone seriously who displays that level of ignorance,,,,,,

  • Ironman89 December 29, 2015, 11:45 am

    I’ve never had a problem with the sights, mine allows me to shoot a 16″ diameter steel plate at 600 yards with iron sights.
    The accuracy depends on the rifle, just like any other gun, some people get a lemon.
    The trigger is fine.
    Your finger is your best safety, don’t load the rifle if you aren’t ready to shoot.
    I understand not liking the original stock, I swapped mine with a full synthetic stock from ATI. Replaced it just to save on weight while hunting. I never had an issue taking the stock rings off.
    This rifle is the old and reliable.
    If you are just going to complain about the Nagant, don’t buy one.
    Just my opinion

    • Oli January 2, 2016, 2:59 pm

      Nagant ammo is 7.62×38. For the Nagant revolver…
      Nagant had VERY little to do with the Mosin, so let’s call that a Mosin now, and let the Nagant remain a revolver.

  • Anthony December 29, 2015, 6:48 am

    The author’s rifle is a M91 Mosin. He stated there was difficulty removing the barrel bands and he used force. What everyone with this type Mosin and barrel band is that the screws on the barrel band are reverse threaded, also known as left hand threads. Without knowing this fact will make removal exceedingly difficult and as can be seen in the pic will cause damage to the stock.

    • David December 31, 2015, 3:46 pm

      Correct. Most who have dealt with M91 are familiar with the removal process of the stock bands. They come off quite easily when you know what you are doing.

  • Jwg December 28, 2015, 10:44 pm

    It would be more fun to make my own stock from a walnut board. Since the 91/30 is so badly mated in its stock, even a total screwup is an improvement over the original.

  • Ken Mike December 28, 2015, 9:14 pm

    Bought one when I was 15 . $25. Shot graoundhogs with steel cored bullets. Typically left a nice .30 hole clean thru. Never misfired one time and was truly a youngsters dream gun. Cheap. Leave Bubba alone, I can identify with him and the gun is excellent whether modified or not.

  • dogman197 December 28, 2015, 7:22 pm

    What a bunch of old women. You should be be discussing tampons.

    • George Procyshyn January 5, 2016, 1:40 am

      They’d be bitchn’ about the tampons dogman

  • Mmkkpro December 28, 2015, 6:13 pm

    I love my mosin , typical russian weapon simple , effective , indestructable , every time I pick it up I wonder how many nazis it took out , I think about the soldier who carried it into battle. , it’s a lot to thi k about and kinda cool.

  • Winston December 28, 2015, 4:13 pm

    That M91 stock with type 1 barrel bands is irreplaceable. Nice going on ruining a historical relic.

  • shran December 28, 2015, 4:09 pm

    This article makes me want to puke. Would you take a hammer and chisel to a nice ’57 Chevy to put a spoiler on it? Because that is essentially what has happened here – a person with money to burn, no shooting skill, and a complete lack of mechanical understanding has parted ways with a large chunk of change that will never come back when it comes time to sell. I don’t know why anyone is defending him, either…must be Democrats, nobody else will pat someone on the back for losing money on investments!

    • David December 29, 2015, 12:30 pm

      Really shran?! Using a mosin as an investment? What a joke!

    • Maj(R) Mike Weems January 1, 2016, 3:22 pm

      Hey, it’s his money and there is such a glut of MN’s on the market that he is hardly messing up one of the last ones. I bought a Hungarian M44 that someone had removed the bayonet lug from, and I intend to do something very similar to this article with it, it’s ‘collector’ value (if there ever was any) is gone already.

  • Just1Spark December 28, 2015, 3:38 pm

    All anyone needs to know about the mosin.
    Out of the top 100 snipers in history, 97 carried the Mosin Nagant.

    Just for some perspective. Chris Kyle is about 167 on that list if I recall correctly.

    • tmlong range February 1, 2016, 12:51 am

      Yep very true go to any web page and put best sniper rifles in history the mosin will rank in every one it’s cheap yeah but is a legend

  • 54rImproved.com December 28, 2015, 3:18 pm

    If you really want to make and Express Mosin, …….. Check out the 54r Bond Improved.
    http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLr9lOKMbkBspWhP72tD85Ikt3H_fyeN6A

    • Paul Helinski December 28, 2015, 3:44 pm

      This is a ridiculous comment. Great, another gun nerd caliber that you can cut on a cheap existing barrel, but without involvement of the powder companies it’ll never be anything but a ruined Mosin.

  • petru sova December 28, 2015, 3:10 pm

    Butchering a Military rifle has always monetarily been a losing proposition. You devalue the rifle to almost nothing immediately by butchering it, you spend money butchering it that will never be recouped in a resale, you destroy the rapidly rising collector value of the rifle if left in its original military configuration. Most if not all of the time commercial guns both used and new can be purchased for way less money. And last but not least you destroy the Military heritage firearms that will never be made again resulting in the remaining unaltered un-butchered guns prices to go up to the point where ordinary people can no longer afford to collect military rifles. Brilliant just absolutely Brilliant.

  • phosphorus32 December 28, 2015, 12:22 pm

    Sad to see this happen to a collectible Finnish M91.

    If I were of the mind to modify a historical firearm (I’m not), I would be very reluctant to take advice from someone who doesn’t know some of the most basic operations of the firearm he’s modifying. As pointed out previously, it does have a safety. The barrel bands on the M91s had left hand threads, that’s why the author had to resort to damaging the $50 pair of barrel bands and the $100 handguard by using a hammer instead of a screwdriver. Finnish M91s were sighted in and adjusted for accuracy, often with shims placed in the stock at the points where the action bolts engaged the receiver (action).

    In short, this is a project to take an accurate, valuable, historically significant rifle, destroy that value and history, then spend more money to make it an accurate non-collectible rifle that mimics a modern rifle that could be purchased for less than the cost of materials to execute this project.

  • wtxbadger December 28, 2015, 12:05 pm

    Good article. The only thing I would disagree with is that Mosin does have a manual safety. To engage the safety you grasp the back of the bolt and rotate it to safe the action. It is not easy to engage the safety but it can be done. I own several Mosin’s and they are a blast to shoot.

    • Jerry February 1, 2017, 11:53 am

      These comments are right on.

  • Randy December 28, 2015, 11:46 am

    I could not read all the comments….but I love seeing the collective collecters whine.
    Safe Queens are for those guys shooters who mod their guns are just like hot rodders. There would be no after market industry with out those who want triggers stocks and other not from the factory parts.
    So chop shop them all you want it is your gun. The learning curve is priceless.

  • Kurt Gustafson December 28, 2015, 11:36 am

    I had a sporterized M-N back in 1964/65 while stationed in Alaska. The biggest problem I had was a worn out chamber. Tried to handload the shells and none would fit back in the rifle. Seemed that the chamber was out of round. Not a bad shooter, just bought it for fun. Sold it to another soldier.

  • Leif Leppala December 28, 2015, 11:31 am

    I would like to point out that you sporterized a Finnish M91, and you could have sold it for $300-$350, and purchased a better firearm to make into an express rifle.

  • Ronbo6 December 28, 2015, 11:12 am

    Whose opinion was it that this rifle wasn’t ‘collectible’?

    Rifles with import stamps are a nasty fact of life in the USA right now (I wish it weren’t), and a M1891 rifle (which this rifle WAS) in anything resembling original condition is not all that easy. I would have loved to have it in my collection, even with the import stamp.

    Had he not ruined that stock by using a big hammer to get the barrel band off, he could have EASILY sold it online for well over 50 dollars.

    The guy has somewhere in the neighborhood of $500 in that rifle as it sits. You can get a perfectly good Mossberg for less than that from any Bass Pro, Cabelas, Dick’s, or any number of other outdoor shops in the country.

    We collectors have a collective term for people who do this sort of thing to original condition military firearms. That term is a name. That name is Bubba!

  • Pat December 28, 2015, 10:54 am

    I understand that a good trigger leads to better accuracy. However, even with the free-floated barrel, how does one achieve such improved accuracy with that pencil-thin free floated barrel? Any idea how that was possible?

  • Ivan Boatwright December 28, 2015, 10:10 am

    Overkill, a composite stock, some minor adjustments and a medium priced scope will get you a rifle that will stand against any military issue rifle. Quality is not in the cost.

  • Paul Curry December 28, 2015, 9:49 am

    Yes, the Mosin is an underrated utility rifle, but you can compare this project to the 16 year old who puts a $1000 worth of rims and tires and a $2000 stereo in his ratted out, 1987 Pontiac Grand Prix. You still end up with something that’s worth less than what you spent on it.

  • Newtire December 28, 2015, 9:09 am

    I can’t get over how some guy submits an article on something fun that he did & then there’s always a few people who want to dump all over the guy.

    Thanks for the great article. Real pretty rifle.

    Wonder how many of most anything originally made to be handed out to a bazillion soldiers wouldn’t stand for a little improvement. Makes me want to go out & get another Mosin just because you still can. .

    There are plenty enough keyboard one hole group shooters and naysayers that are willing to pick someone apart elsewhere on the net. So go to one of those sites & tear it up Zippy!

  • Newtire December 28, 2015, 9:08 am

    I can’t get over how some guy submits an article on something fun that he did & then there’s always a few people who want to dump all over the guy.

    Thanks for the great article. Real pretty rifle.

    Wonder how many of most anything originally made to be handed out to a bazillion soldiers wouldn’t stand for a little improvement. Makes me want to go out & get another Mosin just because you still can. .

    There are plenty enough keyboard one hole group shooters and naysayers that are willing to pick someone apart elsewhere on the net. So go to one of those sites & tear it up Zippy!

    • willyj73 December 29, 2015, 9:58 pm

      That’s because he ruined a nice rifle. How can a person write an article on a gun, and have no idea on how to operate the rifle. A simple search would have led the author to the correct way to remove the barrel bands. He could have built his “express rifle” without ruining the original rifle. The stock looked like a new stock that was added after a Finnish refurb. The Finnish armories aren’t making those anymore. So, once they’re gone, they’re gone. Some people like to tinker for some reason, which is fine. Different strokes for different folks. But, why destroy a relic. When you leave this earth, you aren’t going to take the rifle with you. Also, you may decide to sell it someday. Can’t the tinkerers buy some wood and build new stuff…if you just have to cut something? Why not build an AR if you want to build a rifle so bad? Heck, you’d spend just as much money. $350 Finnish M91 + Boyd’s stock, timney trigger, etc. You may have been lucky and got the rifles when they were cheaper, but some of these can sell for $800 and up if you have a specific model. Some of the U.S. M91’s sell in the thousands, and so do 8mm conversions.

  • C.K. December 28, 2015, 8:42 am

    The mosin does have a safety. Just reach up and grab that giant Knob on the bolt, pull back and rotate counter clockwise, safety is now on. Reverse to return to ready.

    • Jerry February 1, 2017, 11:57 am

      Absolutely, correct.

  • Mike December 28, 2015, 8:04 am

    Changing the stock and keeping the origional stock is crucial to your resale value. Yes, as the write stated the are $200-$350. Just a few years ago, they were under $100. The writer was wrong about import marks. The import mark has little to do with the value. Yes a legit battle rifle that was picked up as a trophy in Korea.or Nam is worth a bit more, assuming you have the paperwork. The marks that are important are under the tang, on the reciever, and sometimes hidden from plain view.

    What is my background and credentials? I am a Curio and Relics collector specializing in Mosins.

  • Mke in Maine December 28, 2015, 7:39 am

    If what was shown at 50 yards is considered acceptable then the writer HAS NO BUSINESS NEAR ANY GUN, WATER TYPE INCLUDED ! A Nagant is designed, out of the factory, to be battle sighted at 100 yards, and with military ammo. Any Nagant that is rebuilt, using iron sight’s, should be able to shoot this group at 200 yards, and with any type of ammo, reload’s included. Jeff Cooper must be crying over this, as so many other’s are wondering what moron let this get in here, to embarrass us all……….

  • Andrew December 28, 2015, 6:50 am

    Wow. You have no business around milsurp firearms. The rifle you butchered was indeed valuable AND collectible being a Finnish M91, rather than a more common Russian M91/30. And what’s this horse hockey about import stamps gives it no collector value? Import stamps do not detract value… Heck, the Mosin that sold for $11,000 was import marked. Do your research bonehead.

  • Derrick December 28, 2015, 6:05 am

    The author’s four “problems” are either not actually all that bad, personal preference, or straight up lies.
    1. There is no manual safety.
    2. The trigger sucks.
    3. The accuracy is battle quality and acceptable for hunting, but not great.
    4. The gun is just plain fugly.

    1. This both incorrect and inconsequential. The Mosin does have a manual safety, pulling the back of the bolt back and twisting it. But you should never need to use it. Simply remove the bolt. Can be done in seconds.
    2. This is relative. Some of them have great triggers, others don’t. The M39 has a long trigger pull while the M38s I’ve fired have great triggers.
    3. When the Mosin was designed, “battle quality” was 400 yards and beyond. I’ve fired a 91/30 PU that was nailing bottles at 200 yards easy. Besides, if you want a rifle that’s super accurate, then buy one that was designed for long range shooting. The Mosin wasn’t.
    4. This is personal preference. I personally think all guns are badass looking. One like the Mosin and Kar98 have that old time feel to them while Beretta CX4s and most bullpups have that futuristic look.

  • Old parchment December 28, 2015, 4:34 am

    I agree with the author. He took a fugly old Russian rifle and made a real nice one out of it. I own a 9130 made in 1938 and can’t pronounce the factory name but I’d love to shorten the barell a bit and put on a nice Boyd’s stock on it. I call it a poor mans 30/06. I get my surplus ammo for 4.95 a box of20 and it shoots like a dream off a good rest. But as some of you guys said if you don’t want to do that to a milsurp rifle then don’t but if you do I say go for it Hoss

  • Brandon September 20, 2015, 5:00 am

    I bought an old 91/30 for $90 6 or 7 years ago. I cleaned it up as much as I could think to do, took it out to the range, blew 600 rounds through it (with a little shoulder numbness) and brought it home. Somewhere I still have the brass. This article is very informant. If I would have found this back then I would totally have done this. A gun is a gun is a gun. We all love shooting. I shoot a Springfield .30-06, and a Mossberg 590 at the moment with trailing .22 pistols and rifles. In my time I have shot many many guns as I was a park host at a shooting range. It is wondrous how many people are so excited to see other people shoot their guns. To do this to a Mosin is a huge step up. I am not real sure what people think makes a “junk gun”. The price? Price has nothing to do with how well a gun is. If I needed something fast to shoot and I had the option to grab a Mosin 7.62x54R or a Springfield .30-06, I would choose the Mosin. Mosin loads fast, and with iron sites takes seconds to dial and shoot. They both have about the same kick. Mosin Nagant 91/30 was the Russian sniper rifle. Many of men were sniped quickly with these guns. Right there would be a good enough reason to go buy this gun. Sniper rifles are sought after guns. Don’t put down a really old gun just because it looks like junk. If you think about it, a lot of people take beautiful guns and make them look cheap with plastic stocks.

    Anyway, thank you for a great read, and thank you for the links for the stock and trigger. This is one great idea that I would love to do in the future.

    Have a nice day

  • Josh Smith March 21, 2015, 9:32 am

    Hi Folks,

    I’m taking Mosin hunting picture submissions again this year.

    If you’d like yours up on my website, please see details at

    http://www.smith-sights.com/mosin-hunting-pictures.php

    Include as much or as little info as you like. I’d prefer make of Mosin and ammo type as a minimum, but it’s not mandatory. It’ll just help others choose in the future.

    Enjoy!

    Regards,

    Josh

  • Dennis March 18, 2015, 3:42 pm

    UPDATE: got the stock today……
    So after a month of excuses no call backs or Emails, I finally get my stock from Boyds’ Gunstocks, and low an behold the stock doesn’t fit. Now I understand some work would need to be done but this is just ridiculous. the hole for the recoil lug is drilled off center the rear mag screw hole is crooked and there is a chunk of wood missing from in between the mag and the trigger guard. So I call them(5 times to get an answer) and got told that I can return it and get a replacement…. in 15 bis days(yeah another month) so i said the hell with it, I am just going to take it to a smith and have it re-drilled and put action pillars in, nothing I can do with the missing chunk unfortunately. So if you are looking for a new stock avoid Boyds’ Gunstocks, the quality sucks, the service is poor and you will spend a month waiting on junk,

  • scott March 18, 2015, 1:45 pm

    My main issue with this article is that the author is giving very poor and outright wrong information out as though it were a gospel truth.

    There’s nothing wrong with modification to your own weapon, it’s your money. But the point of the article was aimed toward someone who lacks funds for a more expensive weapon. And yet by the absolute failure to educate people about various rifles of this type, some of which are very valuable is, the author is in fact instructing people to loose value.

    The author and administration should be ashamed.

  • scott March 18, 2015, 1:17 pm

    Judging by the photos, you screwed up a collectable Mosin. The type of band that was hard to remove, the hex reciever, the swivel brackets screwed to the stock, the original type rear sight, and the open front sight look to me like an original M91, not the common M91/30. It has the potential to have been a Finnish capture rifle from the Wintar War, or even a Finnish M28.

    Good job, in your effort to show how to refurbish a common rifle, you quite possibly destroyed a highly collectable and valuable rifle.

    Your article is spot on in regards to the very common Mosin M91/30, but please tell people that there are other Mosin rifles that are highly sought after, and teach them how to tell the difference please.

    • Terry January 1, 2016, 5:50 am

      Morin as collectors guns, I can and have purchased these buy the case for 500.00 . Then sold them for 100.00 each just last year. If someone can upgrade one and have the enjoyment of improving his property then by all means have at it. These guns are far from rare. I will most likely see some this weekend at the Dulles gun show for between 100.00 – 200.00 or less if you haggle. If you want purity in a Morin then I would suggest contacting one of their collectors who knows which ones have future value. Most of the ones at g shows are nothing but standard issue weapons. Hundreds of thousands were made of which only some are truly worth collecting…

  • Dennis March 17, 2015, 9:27 pm

    You must have gotten lucky to get the stock. Many of us have not gotten out orders from Boyd’s and had money taken. Boyd’s doesn’t answer the phones or return emails. If you are wanting to get a stock avoid them at all cost!

  • Ross March 16, 2015, 8:49 pm

    Great article. Looks like a fun project. The nay sayers are who they are. I’m the guy that would tub a 67 mustang and build a blown gasser so I’m impervious to their negative vibes. The only thing that is an issue for me is the extreme barrel length but then again I’d whack the barrel off at twenty inches cause I can’t see much with open sights anyway. I have a wonderful old Leupold 3x that’s quick to acquire a target sitting on a 3030 right now. I’ve never owned a gun that didn’t need work though my H&R Ultra Slug is damn close..I just put a ATI stock on it..

  • brigond March 14, 2015, 9:56 pm

    Your right hookr26, nobody should be attacked for what they do with their own money or property. I also understand the passion of the collectors also. I’m a new mosin collector/shooter myself. Only have seven. Some collectors from the link I posted above have over 100. They are very addicting once you start learning the history , what the many country’s are that used them , what all those cool markings on the metal and wood mean . The amount of variations in even one single rifle model .They are still in use even today. The passion comes out when collectors see incorrect information about these rifles. When people lump mosins into one category . When they are misled to believe that they are not altering anything of value. That’s why all my posts above have been give information and not criticize. Good luck stay safe and enjoy.

  • hookr26 March 13, 2015, 10:21 pm

    Only 2 hours into the comment section will read more later; Quite educational. My son has one and I know little about it. I’ve spent a little on black rifles. Gave away a 1903 35 years ago when I knew nothing about it after having it fixed for a friend. Don’t have near the experience many of you have but I do know one thing, In the coming days, the gun you have and can hit what your aiming at, man or beast will keep your family alive if you have ammo. We are working at having a cross section of reliable tools and ammo for them. Don’t know what ammo we will find come SHTF + 30, 90, 180, 365 days.

    Am surprised at the attacks on the person for doing something with his own property but has been educational as to values.

    thanks

  • brigond March 12, 2015, 6:10 pm

    Here is a link to an active thread . It was started by someone interested in starting a mosin collection. It talks about one of many types of mosins (dragoon) and it’s variants. They also talk about the rarity of the more sought after rifles. Some folks posted some beautiful dragoons from their collections.

    Keep in mind that if you come across rifles like these you may be modifying something worth more than the entire cost of your project. Yes, Mosins do have collectors value. Enjoy them the way you like but do a little looking into before you start your project.
    I’m not sure if posting a link is allowed Mr moderator please leave out the link if this is the case. Good luck.
    http://forums.gunboards.com/showthread.php?391963-Dragoon-help!

  • ap**tn March 11, 2015, 11:31 pm

    To my knowledge most collectors like Finnish m/n rifles . and most Finnish m/n rifles,if not all are reworked Russian rifles . so for jethro to alter a rifle to fit his needs is just the new chapter in the history of the m/n. the m/ n has been altered before maney times according to the book THE MOSIN NAGANT RIFLE. by Terence lapin.so its nothing new. but that’s just my opinion and you know what people say about opinions .

  • Andrew March 11, 2015, 9:28 pm

    I installed my Mosin in a Archangel stock and added a muzzle break. It kicks like my .223 now. I can shoot that thing all day and not feel it the next day. Loading the 5 and 10 round magazines is as easy as any rifle. Well worth the money just for the fun of the project. Next stop, Timney trigger. p.s., the stock has the cut outs for the trigger and safety already cut out.

  • Jamie Ennis March 11, 2015, 8:41 pm

    I have two shooters and two hex with spotless bores. You can collect and modify at the same time. That is why I love these. Never spent more than $140 on the origional by. Got a bent handled bolt and a solid scope mount for one. Left the other with iron sites and may bed the shooters. Timiney triggers cost too much. That is where I stop spending. Nothing wrong with someone wanting to sport out a gun that is very used but still shoots great. I was lucky to find the 2 hex one a tula still researching the markings on the other both with super clean bores. I would say they have little or no wear and would not need to shoot these. They are worth preserving.

    • Ye Olde Hunter March 13, 2015, 6:30 pm

      Right on, Jamie! Preserve the rarest, bubba-ize the most common. Look, I collect military small arms; I would never sporterize one. But it has been done for ever. I have seen Civil War muskets, some from relatively rare makers, that were cut off and bored out to use as shotguns; I once owned a Confederate foot artillery sword that had the “CS” bored out and the point of the blade ground off to make it into a kind of machete. I am damned sorry that it happened, but I’m well aware that it made those now-valuable antiques more valuable to their owners at the time, and I don’t think that it would have made a bit of difference to them if they had know how I would suffer a century and more later. If it’s your rifle you can do what you want to. Just remember: somewhere, sometime, somebody is going to pick that sporter up, shake his head, and say, “Damned shame. If he’d just left it alone it’d be worth four times as much.”
      Happy shooting, friend.

  • Petru sova March 11, 2015, 4:51 pm

    I often hear the excuse from Jethro that I am too poor to buy a rifle so I will hack up a low price military rifle. It never occurs to Jethro that he will spend more money butchering a military rifle than if he just went out to a gun show and found a military rifle that had been butchered in the past. There are thousands of these destructed rifles available at next to nothing prices. But no that means Jethro does not have the chance to hack one up himself. I think he gets a fiendish delight in annihilating everything he gets his hands on as it then gives him an excuse to go out and buy another rifle and start the process of mass destruction all over again. One can even find used sporting guns a rock bottom prices that believe it or not are sometimes way better than the modern plasticky and cast iron modern guns of today. I have bought Sears FN 98 guns, Montgomery Ward FN 98 guns at bargain basement prices and all I had to do was load up a box of ammo as many even still had scopes on them ready to shoot. Does it make any sense to spend a lot of money hacking up a military rifle and then buying a bunch of expensive aftermarket parts that many times turn out to have low quality workmanship to boot. I suppose this only makes sense to Jethro who cannot wait to hack up everything he gets his hands on.

  • frankie g. March 11, 2015, 2:12 pm

    If all those Mauser’s Springfields Enfields Arisaka’s and carcano’s were unaltered G.I issue, guess what. They would be in a barrel at your L.G.S selling for 2/3 to 3/4 the price of a savage stevens or a rem 710 or similar cost “deer rifles”.he made it for himself, not for you, as long as he’s happy, good enough . outside of a few select one’s collector value of mosin is about like collecting used harbor freight tools , they work, properly , but they aint snap-ons! most value is in personal satisfaction of having made something functional to yourself , by yourself . good job.

  • Dave March 11, 2015, 10:38 am

    The arguments about the historical value of the Mosin are a joke. They remind me of the critics who told me not to “Hot Rod” my old 1965 4-door car, or the critics who told me to shelve my High Standard as a collector’s item. I had the same Capitalist answer for all of them: Buy it from me, you do what you want with it.
    None of the critics was willing to put their money where their mouths were.
    A] If everyone else modifies their relics, cars, guns, or otherwise, then the collectors who keep theirs pristine now have rarer pieces.
    B] The most valuable old relics that ever existed were old PEOPLE who had been there, done that. There never has been a piece of machinery treated with the lack of respect accorded to some of our Veterans, as an example.
    For the people who think modifying a Mosin is a waste of effort, there were also people who told me my 1965 Buick 4-door or wasn’t worth the effort because they weren’t coupes. I happen to like 4-door cars, they’re cheaper, more plentiful. The ultimate deciding factor, however, was that playing with stuff was fun.
    I know some collectors, they are friends of mine. They like collecting, I don’t. I would rather use stuff than put it on a shelf. If you want to ‘save’ it from being used, then buy it from me or shut up.
    That 1949 High Standard won my daughter 3rd place in her target pistol club. My other old firearms shoot just fine, often better than “modern” stuff. My old cars aren’t as efficient as the new stuff, but they are more fun, and customs look better at the cruise-in than pristine originals.
    There is a lot of new stuff I wouldn’t spend money on, especially considering how it performs if it gets used regularly. There are a lot of functional 100-year old Mosins. Are there any functional 50-year old AR15s that you could use regularly without replacing a lot of parts?

  • Josh Smith March 11, 2015, 12:07 am

    Hello,

    The project was well done. There are things I’d not have done or would have done differently, but that’s the beauty of customization.

    My Mosin looks stock. It is not stock. It *will* shoot circles around many modern rifles.

    It’s made better than most budget-priced rifles, and this Mosin was made in 1939.

    Ditto my 1892 Gewehr 88/05. It just flat shoots. I didn’t do much to it except replace the front sight with a taller one.

    You can just feel the quality in these old rifles. There’s no MIM. I like my modern rifles, but they just don’t compare. Heck, I just had a piece of my Savage’s bolt break on me. It’s a piece that shouldn’t wear, and yet it did.

    I have one custom build planned. It will take lots of time because I’m not rich and I’ll have to buy parts as I can afford them. The goal will be to build a lefty precision rifle with the quality feel of an older bolt action. This will run into the thousands and will not be completed for at least five years unless I win the lottery.

    And that’s the idea here. You righties have it good. Grab a Mauser 98, Mosin, etc, action, toss on a new barrel, lap the lugs, install a good trigger, install a ‘scope, and drop it into a decent stock, and you’ve got yourself a precision rifle. (OK, I oversimplified that, but you get the idea.)

    If I want to work the bolt with my trigger hand like you right handers do, I have to sink lots of money into a rifle to get one just as good as something you all can make from surplus.

    Be happy you have that option.

    I get really tired of hearing the denouncements by folks thinking history is being destroyed (no, there were plenty of other Mosins in that particular unit) or that it’s better and more cost-effective to buy a new rifle. No, it’s not. New rifles in the same price range simply are not as rugged. You can’t cast a receiver, fill it with MIM guts, and tell me it’s as strong as a milled receiver and forged guts. We live in an era of “strong enough”, not of “overbuilt”. I want my rifles overbuilt. I want them to feel substantial. Plastic and castings don’t do it for me.

    I suspect this is the reason many others prefer to build up Mosins (and built up Mausers before Mosins became popular). They are substantial, rugged arms.

    Regards,

    Josh

  • jim t March 10, 2015, 11:14 pm

    Nice article. My Mosin has only timy trigger. Floated barrel. Shoot 1.5 in close to75 yrs. Recoil a lot improved. Luv it and cheap ammo. Iron sites.

  • Darrell March 10, 2015, 7:35 pm

    I have given all of my sons a Mosin Nagant as their first rifles. Cost and durability were my main focus. These rifles are hard hitting and dependable. We have taken all of their rifles and 2 of mine and done Archangel stock conversions on them and bought the angled bolt handles for 4 of them to accommodate scopes. I think if you enjoy your project and you are doing what you want to do who cares what anyone else thinks. Enjoy your project and have fun shooting that inexpensive,reliable Russian ammo.

  • Frank E Reardon March 10, 2015, 5:34 pm

    Great idea and great job, I believe I am going to pick one up this weekend if I can get one at the gun show.

  • brigond March 10, 2015, 4:45 pm

    Yes ,New England Westinghouse another Variation of a very “collectable ” USA mosin. Chop it up ? I sure as he’ll wouldn’t. Maybe some folks here might unknowingly do so.

    See, not all 91/30 are cheap. You may also have an ex sniper rifle which looks just like a standard 91/30 , but is worth more. There’s a simple way to tell . Research before you modify. Good luck!

  • Tom Belvin March 10, 2015, 12:40 pm

    I bought mine for $15.00 in 1959. Made by New England Westinghouse Co.1 1/2 ” groups at 100 yds. over sand bags The extractor broke and I made one that barely worked. I think I broke it by forcing the bolt on a chambered round.Don’t do that!
    I have looked at many gun shows and never saw another Westinghouse. I understand they were never sent to Russia as the Bolshivics had taken over.

    • ap**tn March 10, 2015, 7:26 pm

      Hey tom you can get a extractor off eBay for cheap . and go gack to shooting . hope that helps

  • Long Tom March 10, 2015, 10:24 am

    Got my first MN at an Ogden, UT gun show for $52. It had a Fajen stock and had been thoroughly buffed and nicely reblued. No marks but the serial number. It was checkered but you could barely see it under a very thick coat of bowling alley finish. I know, HORRORS! It took me months of applying Bix stripper and digging with toothpicks to clean off the finish. The checkering was top notch, much better than most factory jobs.The stock was a second with a repaired gouge on one side but it had great figure. The stock is the European hogback style that fits like it was made for me. It had the original rear sight but a nicely installed ramp front sight.
    The inletting looked like a sharpened screwdriver and rock job. I glass bedded it and installed Pachmayr pad, Uncle Mike’s 1597-2 split barrel band QD swivel set, professional turned down bolt. Shoots good, needs Timney trigger. It’s MY Express Rifle–a silk purse from a sow’s ear. My other MN ‘s are stock and will stay that way.

  • -jb March 10, 2015, 10:03 am

    “There is only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well please.” — P. J. O’Rourke

  • brigond March 10, 2015, 12:20 am

    I would not customize any military surplus rifle. Most wouldnt buy someone elses modified frankenstien or beauty dependiing on where you stand. Obviously those who do modify mosins are free to do as they please with their hard earned cash. My point here is to let folks be aware that not all mosins are the same. There are people out there (collectors) that will pay you more cash than you originally paid for your mosin. Yes , there are collectors which means they are collectable. Say you paid $150 for a rifle and did some (research) and found that it was a desirable configuration to a collector. Would you modify it or sell that same rifle to a collector for double or more? You doubled or tripled your money. Now go out and buy a run of the mill 91/30 refurb and chop that up with cash to spare. (I don’t want you to, but it’s your rifle not mine).
    You can’t find a usable m91 mosin model rifle for $150 dollars. You might get lucky and snag one. Go to the online auction sites and look up m39, m27, 28/30 , m28 91/38, 91/59 to name a few. None can be had for $150.
    Make sure you don’t have one of those before you modify. Research before you go foward. Good luck

    • Bubba March 10, 2015, 11:36 am

      Yes, people don\’t understand the mosin used for this project is not a $150 91/30.
      The rifle was VERY collectable & the hand guard & barrel bands alone WERE worth $150 the cost of a 91/30.
      What a retard, no safety, don\’t know how to remove barrel bands (left handed treads), import mark means not collectable! What a retard! What an expert!!

      • YNot1911 March 11, 2015, 5:17 pm

        “With great Power comes great Responsibility…”, so sayeth Stan Lee. There are a whole lot of ways to modify Mosins today with aftermarket products that are easily removed and replaced with the original equipment. I’m 67, and knowing how the Chinese T53 I just got is gonna kick, I opted to install the $15.00 rubber replacement buttpad for shooting purposes. Does that make me a ‘Bubba’? I don’t think so — 2 screws and I’m back to original. And I preserve my old bones in the process!

  • Mike March 9, 2015, 11:00 pm

    I took that the article was all about making the best out of a inexpensive firearm with affordable ammo. Lots of the negative crowed commenting here. Yall can just go away and let us people who appreciate this information enjoy it. Maybe some of us enjoy making old cheap stuff work better. Some people actually like working on things as a project instead of just going out and dumping a bunch of money on the latest greatest thing. Old stuff is fun. The first rifle I remember firing was my uncles Kentucky long rifle, before I was ever in school. Great Stuff!

  • Jimbo March 9, 2015, 10:49 pm

    It was mentioned that the Moisin Nagant has no manual safety. In fact, it has one of the most rugged safeties ever designed; matched only by that of a 98K Mauser. Once engaged, you can drop the rifle off a cliff and the safety will not release. Frankly, I’m surprised that no one has mentioned this. First, pull back as far as possible on the large firing pin knob at the very back of the action. Then turn the knob counterclockwise until the follower guide fits into a notch at the left rear of the receiver. All done; you’re safe! The Russians were extremely pragmatic; they did not care at all about the way a firearm looked. Pretty doesn’t win a war. They cared about function and durability. That’s why the the firing pin knob is so large, to be used in winter with gloves, and why it has grip indents around its rim.

  • Jefferson davis March 9, 2015, 8:16 pm

    The M91/30 does have a safety…
    Pull the back of the bolt and rotate to the 11 o’clock position. There it locks and does not fire until you pull the back of the bolt again and realign to the 12o’clock position.
    With the lock engaged you can not cycle the bolt. And it will not fire…

  • Jefferson davis March 9, 2015, 8:15 pm

    The M91/30 does have a safety…
    Pull the back of the bolt and rotate to the 11 o’clock position. There it locks and does not fire until you pull the back of the bolt again and realign to the 12o’clock position.
    With the lock engaged you can not cycle the bolt. And it will not fire…

  • Michael French March 9, 2015, 8:06 pm

    Contrary to the article, my Mosin Nagant Model 91/30 does have a manual safety. As hard as it may be to engage, you pull on the knob on the end of the bolt and turn it.

  • john milligan March 9, 2015, 7:10 pm

    i bought 10ea 91/30’s. the lands and grooves in every one of them look to be fired very few times. i clean the barrels not in a rush but carefully. i have a boyd’s thumb hole on one and an arch angle stock on another. this stock is way too heavy. let’s make an ar platform for this rifle. the rest i have cleaned and are in my safe. i bought the arch angle so that i could have a 10 rnd magazine. someone needs to develop a drop in 20. the barrel length is great. with scope, at 100 yrds i have two edge cut bulls eyes and the 3rd rnd 1″ from these two. that was the last 3 shots in the zero process. 19 rnds were fired and walked up on the target after 16 rnds for a good zero. trigger by timney.

  • Gerald Campbell March 9, 2015, 6:58 pm

    Its not about the money, its a fun project to do. I cut mine down to a 20 inch barrel and put a red dot on it. It is fun to shoot and is as accurate as any rifle I own. I found the Monarch ammo excellent which is Russian at 10 dollars for 20 rounds at Academy.

  • Gerald Campbell March 9, 2015, 6:55 pm

    Its not about the money, its a fun project to do. I cut mine down to a 20 inch barrel and put a red dot on it. It is fun to shoot and is as accurate as any rifle I own. I found the Monarch ammo excellent which is Russian at 10 dollars for 20 rounds at Academy.

  • Enitachopco March 9, 2015, 4:14 pm

    If you learned to shoot with a Red Rider…. the trigger is the same… If you are to young to have learned with a1940 Red Rider you are not a boomer and are to soft to learn.

  • Anthony March 9, 2015, 3:39 pm

    The rifle you altered is a more rare M91, not the very common M91/30. The barrel bands for your model are left hand threaded, instead of the normal right hand threads. I have no problem altering a M91/30, as I think 17 million of them were made, but the M91 I would leave in military configuration. While you believe that import marks make a rifle worthless, that is not entirely the case. All things being equal between two rifles, the one without marks is worth more to the collector, but import marks have been put on so many rifles and it is so common that they are a standard feature (IMHO). If one is going to modify a Mosin, a Timney trigger is probably the single most effective improvement that can be made.

  • martin March 9, 2015, 3:28 pm

    I’m going sporty with mine it’s what I want. Archangel stock with all the trimmings. Why…because I want to….go buy a run of the mill AR for over 500 dollars, I’ll build custom and love it forever for half.

  • J E Wilson March 9, 2015, 3:23 pm

    Until this article I had never envisioned me with a Mosin Nagant. I customized my M1 Carbine (new stock for longer length of pull and custom look, carved the stock myself, and added forearm for scout scope) and love shooting it, and I use cheap Russion .30 ammo for plinking out to 200 yards with tight groups and have never had any problems with it. Now I am going to start looking for a Mosin Nagant to customize. Sounds like a good fun project for me as it could be even more fun to shoot than my Winchester model 94 in .32 win Special, that I also put a custom stock on for longer length of pull and also have a scope on it. Old eyes really suck for iron sights.

  • Tom O March 9, 2015, 3:20 pm

    This looks like a great project BUT what about the bolt? Is there an easy way of bending it down. I just hate the look of the strait bolt. Excuse me if this is a dumb question (but indulge me and tell me how to do it).

    • Administrator March 9, 2015, 4:01 pm

      a gunsmith can do it

  • Dave March 9, 2015, 2:13 pm

    Nice project. I’ll have to do one. I wonder if I can manage to get a Mauser trench magazine to work with it? I’ll have to take a look.

  • Peyton Quinn March 9, 2015, 1:38 pm

    Using my C@R license I bought a Mosin Nagant rifle, Russian and arsenal refinished. It looked like it was delivered by a ‘Time Machine’ it was in such nice shape. After a general inspection I fired it at 50 yards and was 1 and 1/2 inches high of the bullseye. I then realized th sights were set for 200 meters. I paid $79 plus shipping for this rifle.

    So I bought another rifle and two carbines. I put inexpensive red dot scope on one rifle and one carbine and left the others with original iron sights. I would feel confident of a clean and human kill of the Elk around my ranch with any of the Mosins, and it would be easy with the red dot equipped ones out to 150 yards. I could hit further than that of coursed but if i were further I’d use my scoped 7mm magnum.

    Now with the red dot scope I have whopping total of $ 145 in a high powered,rugged bolt action rifle that ammo is pretty inexpensive for. Also if I but the price brass cased ammo I can work up a load for the weapon if I wanted. Th Mosin is just very good buy on high powered rifle Not as rule a ‘tack driver’ but it will get the job done in reasonably skilled hands..

  • Sam March 9, 2015, 1:37 pm

    There are those who collect Mosins and those who don’t and just enjoy shooting/tinkering with them. Did he get into your collection or safe and modify and “butcher” your personal Mosins? Then just accept the article for what it is. It’s HIS rifle and HIS money and he did what he wanted to do with HIS rifle. He spent HIS money and not yours. He took his project and shared the results with the rest of us, which I very much appreciate. If what he did offends your Mosin sense, don’t be an a@@hole to him in your responses.

    The Mosin is awesome because it gives those who want to learn basic gunsmith skills the opportunity to use a rifle that does not cost them a lot of money if they make a mistake. The Mosin is also an awesome rifle because there are A LOT of folks who don’t have the money for an $800 or $900 dollar rifle for hunting or shooting. There are a lot of folks that can afford a $150 to $250 Mosin and add $200 of accessories over time to be able to have a great hunting rifle or defensive rifle. If a few hundred bucks is not big deal to you, be thankful because a few hundred bucks for A LOT of people right now IS a big deal. Not all of us are just swimming in cash to give to a gunsmith to make our rifles more accurate. Look at the economy folks. 30 cal ammo, along with all ammo, has drastically increased over the past few years. Mosin ammo is very affordable in comparison to many other 30. cal name brands. He just changed the stock and trigger and drastically increased his accuracy. That’s awesome!! Didn’t have to go to an expensive gunsmith to do it either.

    Thank you for sharing these awesome tips on making YOUR Mosin the way YOU wanted it to be.

  • Robert March 9, 2015, 12:48 pm

    Well, I liked this article but I also like My converted type 53 Mosin in it’s $70 poly stock and My Norinco SKS that accepts AK mags and also sits in a poly stock. Both of these former war guns shoot great and cost less than a Ruger American, combined. Maybe some of Us simply can’t afford to pay retail for a new gun, even when We’re talking $400, so We have to be creative to build Our little collection of Firearms by owning H&Rs and CZs instead of Colts and Kimbers. Why act as if We are stealing from You because We converted Our property? If You insist on being the savior of the Mosin for posterity, More power to You, but Please quit whining like a Girly Man, You’ll give all Gun Guys a Bad name.

    • Sam March 9, 2015, 1:41 pm

      Thank you!! Please see my posting because you hit the nail on the head. There are so many of us shooters that had to find the absolute least expensive way to accomplish something with our firearms because we only had a few hundred bucks a year to work with because of bad economic circumstances beyond our control.

      I am so thankful that the Mosin has filled the gap for so many shooters who otherwise could not afford a good .30 cal rifle.

      Thank you again for your post.

  • Bob Conroy March 9, 2015, 12:38 pm

    Could I use a sight alinement tool like that to move a Sight over on a Makarov P 64 pistol on the rear . Had three gun smiths no able to do it and I broke a brand new Drift punch. but I found some one to do it, Got it over! The sight is rounded and hard to move

  • Tom Farley March 9, 2015, 12:19 pm

    Well, this has been a fun post. A silly project for as-silly reasons bating the bubbas, BSers and gurus from their normal bulletin board hideouts into daylight debate. Thanks for the entertainment…. and to most of you, a reminder that the local comunity college probably has remedial courses in the prpoer usage of the English language. AS FOR THE PROJECT: please don’t insult with phony, fuzzy economics, don’t say the rifle is junk, or that it’s because the ammo is cheap. An historical relic was destroyed to sell a stock and a trigger for two sponsors. It was poorly done, has dubious value and the real purpose was to make a facsimile of a century old, obsolete type of rifle. CONCLUSION: Thanks for reminding me how little the general shooting public knows about the guns they profess to revere, cherish and protect. It makes me realize why the Liberals are able to steal our legacy away gun-feature by gun-feature…… Most gun guys don’t know what they are talking about, repeat the mistakes of the know-it-all gurus, and can’t even speak english enough to make themselves understood.

    • Administrator March 9, 2015, 12:56 pm

      You see guys, it’s a natural progression, and almost a formula. Now the self righteous assholes show up to accuse you of selling out to advertisers. Of course they aren’t regular GA readers, nor do they use GA to buy and sell guns. Because if so they would know that neither Timney or Boyds has ever spent a dime here in advertising. Boyds doesn’t even ship out test and evaluation stocks to writers and this was purchased. Timney has sent us triggers to review, but this particular one was bought, and for more than $108 back when they were on backorder at Timney. But shhhhh! Nobody tell this idiot to pull his head out of his ass! It’s fun to watch him show up and make a fool out of himself.

      • petru sova March 9, 2015, 1:54 pm

        Sorry Sir but none of us believe you. It was advertisement to sell accessories to butcher military rifles with pure and simple. I cannot tell you how many times I have gotten sick to my stomach when I was at a gun show and saw such a rifle and guess what the owner usually could get little or nothing from it while the “original military rifles” even ones that were well used sold like hot cakes and continue to do so today if they are untouched, even with import markings and all. “That is the real reality and the real truth” and anyone who goes to gun shows already knows its true.

        • Thomas Farley March 9, 2015, 3:25 pm

          Thanks, Petru, for you kind support. Too bad idiots like ADMINISTRATOR get to run this stuff and run our hobby into the ground. Happy Collecting, Tom

        • JHR March 9, 2015, 6:05 pm

          Petru; Your view has been duly noted, as it has on many of your other posts. I won’t belabor the finer points of a Mosin being historical because it is, at the same time it is a tool and if you can improve a tool to help meet your requirements you most likely will. I didn’t see this article as an advertisement for Boyd’s or Timney triggers, just a good article on what most people who deal with Mosin’s all ready know.
          If one buys a Mosin with hopes or reselling it for a tidy profit they are going to have to live a long time to see a significant increased value. Millions of Mosin’s were built, and there are probably just as many sitting in an eastern European warehouses while the owners wait out the “hurry grab them fast before they are gone” sales pitch before they release them to the general public that thinks, again, this is the last time they will ever get a chance to “own a historical Mosin.” It’s a tool and that is all it will ever be.

      • Thomas Farley March 9, 2015, 3:19 pm

        You moron. I’ve been a subscriber since the begining. Timney and boyds have always been featured. If you are stupid enough to think that just buying an ad is the way this works, you are the biggest asshole on this post. When I pull my head out, you little fag, you can lick it clean. Now post this toughguy. And if you have the balls, provide me with your email like i did with you. Experts like you are killing the gunworld. You punk. And the advise about learning how to write goes double for you because you are supposed to be a professional!

      • brigond March 9, 2015, 6:00 pm

        Do what you want with your money and rifles. Just be aware that you may have one of so many mosin variations that is worth much more than $150 to $200 . Research it before you chop it up. Look at an online auction to see what some variations have sold for. Recently an 91/59 model went for $1200. That could have been your project rifle. Enjoy!

    • Michael Keim March 9, 2015, 1:33 pm

      The word is baiting, not bating. Perhaps you should take one of those remedial English classes you mentioned.

      • Thomas Farley March 9, 2015, 3:34 pm

        Wrong, you look it up. “to contend with blows or arguments,” from Old French batre “to hit, beat, strike,” from Late Latin battere, from Latin batuere “to beat, knock” (see batter (v.)). Are you admiministrator’s bastard son?

        • Michael Keim March 11, 2015, 9:38 pm

          I have looked it up. I’m right and you need to buy a dictionary. You’re babbling on about French and Latin. Of course you had to show your little temper tantrum with your nasty remark. That’s the true measure of an ignorant fool.

      • Thomas Farley March 9, 2015, 3:35 pm

        you look it up. “to contend with blows or arguments,” from Old French batre “to hit, beat, strike,” from Late Latin battere, from Latin batuere “to beat, knock” (see batter (v.)). Are you admiministrator’s bastard son?

  • JHR March 9, 2015, 12:18 pm

    I brought a 1944 91/30 about two years ago and after a few hundred rounds of consistently good groups I could have either left it the way it was or modified it. I went for a modification since the stock looked like it had been dragged down a gravel road, and while this article is about express rifles, allow me to stray. I sent the bolt off to Rock Solid Industries who cleaned up the bolt action. Reshaped and welded the bolt handle to allow for their scope mount. I then purchased the Archangel 91/30 composite stock and the Timney trigger. When everything came together I took it to a local gunsmith to have the Rock Solid scope mount drilled/tapped/installed and while he was at it install the trigger and install the completed rifle into the Archangel stock and mount a Leupold 3-12×40 VX3 scope I wasn’t using. The end result is a good looking accurate, reliable rifle that will probably never see any action than off the bench. You can’t hunt with rifles, unless chambered in a pistol round, where I live but bench shooting is what I like to do and Mosin ammo is inexpensive enough to justify me shooting as much as I care to.
    The only drawback to the Archangel stock is that it reduces the weight to less than that of stock Mosin and the end result is more recoil. In order to combat the recoil I have ordered a muzzle brake from Witt Machine and one from Amazon made by Texas Precision. I’ve yet to receive the one from Witt, but the one from Texas Precision appears to be a well machined article.
    I have since added three other Mosin’s to my collection. A 1928 Hex that looks like it left the factory last week and will never be altered and a 1944 carbine (if you think the 91/30 kicks just try the carbine) that I probably won’t alter either except to perhaps install a removable muzzle brake, and a 1930 Hex that will my gift to my nephew for his welcome home present from Iraq.
    Even if you don’t care to add a scope to your rifle there is a ton of valuable information at Rock Solid’s web site on cleaning/prepping your creosote laden rifle for shooting and advise on free floating the barrel in a standard Mosin stock. I altered one and am preserving two, so I suppose I’m even with the purists out there.

  • Brian March 9, 2015, 12:15 pm

    We are the stewards of these historical pieces. Each rifle has historical value since they connect you with the past and will not be made again. They may not be appreciated now but in 100+ years things will be different. Hacking them up (especially a hex Finn M91) to make a rifle that costs as much and that is no better than a modern rifle is soul crushing. Every bubba’d rifle makes mine more valuable.

  • petru sova March 9, 2015, 12:14 pm

    I might add to those who arrogantly scream, “IT IS MY GUN AND I WILL DESTROY IT IF I WANT TO”. Just remember IT IS NOT YOUR GUN. You are only temporary caretaker of the gun and it is up to you to keep it in as good as shape as possible and in original historical condition so that future generations will be able to enjoy not only the weapon but its history as well. Are we any different than the right wing Isis fanatics who are now destroying all of their history and cultural monuments of the past. We are doing the same by destroying the history of military rifles by butchering them into sporters. Future generations will condemn those who do such things.

    • Smackov December 25, 2015, 9:52 am

      I’ve been reading your comments, you’re drinking again aren’t you?

  • Gary March 9, 2015, 12:04 pm

    Nice rifle, good story, Some people criticize you for doing this, not worth it so on. If it’s what you want do, do it. I took an 86 Win. in 33Win and had it re barreled to .50/110 just because I wanted one. Sold it, and now I am working on an Original Spencer repeater. Anyone can buy a Ruger or Savage express rifle, but making your own is the real fun. I have a Mosin I made into a “Sniper rifle” bought a scope and Russian mount It’s not a real sniper but fun to shoot.

  • Joe March 9, 2015, 11:59 am

    Beauty and value is in the eyes of the beholder.
    I don’t have a Mosin and don’t plan to buy one but that Eskimo gal on that Arctic circle life TV show sure can hit those caribou with hers.
    I did put a Monti Carlo folding stock on my SKS that iv’e owned for twenty years and receive lots of good vibes from other shooters at the range.

    • glock .223 March 9, 2015, 2:40 pm

      I thought beauty was in the eye of the beer holder.

      • Joe March 9, 2015, 5:39 pm

        Yes, and at closing time shes a beauty
        But tomorrow morning….

  • Cappie March 9, 2015, 11:51 am

    Import marks make your Mosin not collectable? I beg to differ!

  • ap**tn March 9, 2015, 11:26 am

    I found the article and replys informol . I’ve owned shot sold and butcherd mosins . i like complete historical guns but if u hunt to put food on your families table than a sporterised mosin is cheap to build and will get the job done every time.

    • petru sova March 9, 2015, 12:16 pm

      Did it ever once occur to you that people can hunt with unaltered military rifles. They have and continue to do so without destroying the historical value. If your eyesight is bad there are plenty of no drill, no tap scope mounts that do not destroy the weapons historical value.

  • James taylor March 9, 2015, 11:00 am

    You said the Mosins had no manual safety , that is not the case . I own several of them. You pull the cocking piece to the rear & turn it counter clock wise. This locks it back resting against the reciver putting the rifle on safe .

    • willowa March 9, 2015, 11:33 am

      Thank you, I was just about to point this out. The safety may be a bugger to use, but it’s there.

      • Stargzer March 10, 2015, 6:18 pm

        I find it easier to just remove the bolt instead of using the safety. I’m too weak to pull that thing back!

  • Jose March 9, 2015, 10:56 am

    Just wanted to share some information regarding modifications that are not permanent to these Mosin Nagant weapons. There are several sources of both aftermarket and original parts which will improve the accuracy and function of these weapons. Gun Parts Corporation and Liberty Tree Collectors are great sources of original parts. Smith Sights , Mojo Sights and Anacortes Prototypes sell some quality peep sight systems that do not permanently alter the weapon. Buy original type parts, such as a bolt body, and have it modified to a sniper bolt configuration while leaving your original bolt unaltered so you can put your weapon back to its original condition without reducing it’s value. Finnish modified triggers can be had inexpensively and can be switched out with your original trigger giving you a better trigger pull, leaving your original trigger unaltered. You Tube is a good source of information for anyone wanting to do modifications both permanent and reversible to their particular weapon. Do a little research, there is virtually unlimited information on everything from simple modifications to expensive custom builds depending on your preference.

  • bubba March 9, 2015, 10:55 am

    the second comment from bubba is my comment. unusual but true, 2 bubbas commenting and sending at about the same time. their computer just put my comment with a reply for the other bubba!!! hi, bubba!!! who ever you are???? signed this bubba, not the other bubba!!!

    • Bubba March 10, 2015, 11:26 am

      Odd, I hope everybody that reads this artical chops up there M91 everyone that is chopped up makes mine worth more.

  • lilbear68 March 9, 2015, 10:47 am

    ok after the 4 points, none of which matter, what IS the point of this article?
    if your going to sink a ton of $ into a mosin and make it something it was never intended to be why not just take that money and buy a modern shooter and try to soothe your OCD into ignoring others that probably don’t want to hear your diatribe against a shooter that they enjoy.

  • Phil March 9, 2015, 10:42 am

    What’s wrong with hacking up a stock to make the rifle better suit his wants/needs? It’s his rifle.
    I’m doing something similar to an old lee enfield that has just been sitting in my safe for the past 5 years. I’m getting the barrel cut down and threaded, installing a muzzle brake, and swapping out the sights. It’s just another way to appreciate an old firearm, no different than me modifying one of my motorcycles to better suit me. Plus, I like seeing all the different ways people mod old service rifles. They’re very versatile.

    • petru sova March 9, 2015, 12:21 pm

      I might add to those who arrogantly scream, “IT IS MY GUN AND I WILL DESTROY IT IF I WANT TO”. Just remember IT IS NOT YOUR GUN. You are only temporary caretaker of the gun and it is up to you to keep it in as good as shape as possible and in original historical condition so that future generations will be able to enjoy not only the weapon but its history as well. Are we any different than the right wing Isis fanatics who are now destroying all of their history and cultural monuments of the past. We are doing the same by destroying the history of military rifles by butchering them into sporters. Future generations will condemn those who do such things.

      • frankie g. March 11, 2015, 1:10 pm

        It is too his. And he did buy it with his money.But i suppose you don’t think that was his either. I don’t know what he did to earn his money, But i know for my part i DID BUILD MY COMPANY. He is as free as all of us to do with his property as he wishes.Don’t be the Lois Learner of gundom! Anyone who thinks these el cheapo rifles are more than verrry functional utility grade shooters needs to get out their own money and get to collecting their own . Yes wartime bring back’s and original snipers are collectible , That doesn’t mean every one of every grade is. Hell of a difference in a ’69 charger vs a ’69 datsun with a rusted out body. There are tens of millions of these, About ten million in the U.S.A. alone maybe 50 to 150 thousand actually collectable. Buy ’em shoot ’em collect ’em modify ’em but have fun and do whatever gives you the most satisfaction with them.And have fun! Now i have to get back to cera-coatind and synthetic stocking my great grandfathers 1897 model ’92 winchester 38-40 I rebarreled to 357 mag.What good was it just layin’ around in that new box anyway? LOL…

      • Michael Keim March 11, 2015, 9:22 pm

        You’re kind of a pretentious horse’s ass. If I pay for a gun I own it and what I do with it is none of your or anyone else’s business. Private Property, Whether you like it or not.

        • Robert December 29, 2015, 8:30 am

          I get you can’t afford a commercial rifle so you grab a cheap mosin thinking you will turn it into a $1000 gun. Heck many of you rednecks state “Look at this $100 gun I’ve turned into a $1000 sniper rifle”. The point is after dropping all this money into a mosin nagant it is only marginally better and these rednecks are unwilling to admit they dumped a grand into a rifle when they could have purchased two remington 700s for the same price.

          As another above mentioned, we are the custodians of these historical pieces. Sure you can do whatever you want because you bought them, much like a slave master could beat, rape and do as he wanted to his slaves. However I ask you to ponder this for a moment.

          When you see a all matching k98 show up butchered in such a way. Do you not feel angry? Do you not see others angry about this? K98s were made by the millions and common as dirt on the ground decades ago. Those people that ruined that k98 had the same excuses you do now. Except time has caught up with them and the “future generations” are now screaming WHY WHY did you do this to that k98 rifle.

          So please think.. Theres “MILLIONS OF EM AND ITS MY MONEY”. Because in a couple decades there wont be and you will be the subject of much face palming.

          If its your money and you have any respect for the rifle and its history at all, please buy a remington 700. Spend the same amount and get a commercial rifle. But I doubt you will.. I believe some of you do these things merely to see collectors complain, it makes you feel like you matter and you think “oh this will really piss them off” every step of the butchery.

  • John March 9, 2015, 10:22 am

    The Mosin is fugly? I think you’re way off on that.

    • GoatDriver57 March 9, 2015, 11:45 am

      John, I believe the order back in the kick-off days to build the MN was to make a killer-butt bang-stick thats not for a parade but can be operated by one that had an IQ no more than two points above a rock, drop it in the muck and kill on the next fired shot. All those thousands of brave Germans that died by this weapon that didn’t want to be at Stalingrad was not thinking of what rifle put him on his back. MN gotter-done & being fugly.

  • -jb March 9, 2015, 9:50 am

    I don’t care what anyone sez!
    I like it!
    A $200 + 200 shooter? 7.62×54? What’s not to like?
    As for collectibility? I’ll be long gone before a gazillion $250 long-guns become valuable.

    -jb

    • bubba March 9, 2015, 10:44 am

      i got a moisn a few years back for 39.95 at a gun show in philadelphia. i lapped the barrel by first lapping the rifleing in the opposite direction, then in the normal direction with the spiril inside the bbl. i used course valve grinding compund then fine valve grinding compound. then i polished the bbl inside with jewelers wax type polishing compound. i took off about one quarter if the inside diameter of the rifling when i got done it looked like a mirror inside that bbl. then i used a fine file and made the trigger work with a normal pull weight of about 5 pounds. i didnt do anything to the sights, they were already lined up from century. well, the total cost was about 3 bucks. i already had all this stuff in my garage. except i used 4 brass bore cleaning brushes to do the job. so, my moisin is very accurate up to 100 yards. i never got a shot at anything farther out in the woods where i shoot. it is not as accurate as the targets you show that were used to final shooting your moisin. however, i got a savage 110 in 30-06 that all i ever did to that gun was lap the bbl. it will shoot the pants off of anybody elses store bought rifle. at the time, i spent about 300 bucks for it new. cant beat that german inspired button rifling that savage still uses. dear administrator, my advise to you is just go buy a savage off the shelf for your express rifle. i personally dont think that i would be trusting my life by shooting big game in africa with a moisin or, trusting a moisin to bringing down a once in a lifetime shot at a trophy buck at 300 yards with a cheap convertd 40 dollar gun! but thats just my take on it.

    • Calvin Grimalkin March 9, 2015, 12:36 pm

      I can see both sides of the modify or don’t modify a vintage military rifle.

      I suspect that since the beginning of time, obsolete surplus military guns were “Sporterized, into either fine sporter class firearms or ugly utility Bubba-ized atrocities” And not only military surplus guns, but how many pre-1964 Winchesters lost their collector value by refinishing, re-blueing, re stocking, etc.

      That being said, My take is that beauty or utility is in the eye of the beholder, and if you see an unmodified Mosin as “refrigerator art” or an undiscovered “Picasso”, that is the way you see it.

      So, to modify or not modify. a casual scan at gunbroker.com lists a “new/old stock” Savage AXIS Bolt action, 30-06, Synthetic stock, already drilled and tapped for scope mounts for $279.00. 58 minutes left in the auction, and no bidders. In my almost 70 year old eyes it is not a particularly handsome firearm, but certainly worth $the money. For the last year or so, rifles of this sort are usually stocked in the big-box stores for this price leading up to hunting season.

      So, you have that Mosin Nagant that you bought for $100, and you added a Boyds stock for $114, and a Timney Trigger for $108. You have $322 tied up in a rifle. Or ….. For about the same money, you can have a brand new utility grade rifle.

      I will admit to having Bubba-izing a Mauser and an Enfield or two in my youth, when they could be bought for $30 and could be made into a fairly nice sporter for much less than new (Winchester, Remington, Savage) of the time. Would I do it now? Likely not, only because I have some nice rifles and likely won’t “Need” any more before I cash in.

      There is two other aspects to this subject. First, back in the real Heyday of surplus arms, folks who took those fine, sometimes even pristine rifles afield, hunting or target shooting were seen by gun snobs as not able to afford a “Real” hunting rifle. Surplus rifles then were seen as cheap substitutes for the real thing. Now, in the age of AR’s and AK’s and serious Sniper rifles, there is an appreciation of the finely machined, wood and steel products of WW1 and WW2, along with the provenance and cache that they carry. Now we are at the other extreme, folks take fine commercial hunting arms and try to turn them into military look-alikes. There even model 1894 Winchester lever action rifles outfitted with AR type stocks and Picatinny rails.

      The other aspect is the uncertainty of the future. Imagine a future where through a series of events and elections that we wind up with a scenario where we become burdened with European style gun laws and confiscations? What will your unmodified Mosin, Enfield, Mauser, Carcano, Arisaka, etc. be worth when the government says turn them all in? What will your tricked out AR, AK, HK semi auto military rifle be worth? Or your pristine Browning Auto Five, or your Pre ’64 Winchester?

      The average Joe has little control over many of these scenarios. My advice regarding this subject would be “Life is short, do what makes you happy.”

      • Shewolf March 17, 2015, 4:00 am

        Well, when the government says to “turn them all in,” all I can say is, they’d better come loaded for bear. The “uncertainty of the future” you speak of is exactly why the 2nd amendment was penned to start with; so American citizens can arm themselves and protect their families if and when our illustrious leaders decide that dictatorship trumps democracy.

  • Ben Hubbard March 9, 2015, 9:44 am

    Hard for me to believe some of the comments. It was, and is, his rifle. He can do anything he wants to it. As far as destroying the collectible value of the rifle, I do not expect that it will ever be worth much to a collector. If you can make a useable shooter from it. Good for you. I have made many good rifles, from old Mausers, in almost every caliber. They do not leave my shop, unless they shoot less than a minute of angle. I have kept two for myself: A .280 and a .35 Whelen. Both of these rifles had some collectors value, but I suspect that their current value will far exceed their value, if they had been kept in their original condition. By the way, I put a pistol scope on a friend’s double ugly, M N. He kills deer with it. Just for the neck of it. Most of the time, he is hunting with a customized Mauser , that I built for him.

  • Bubba March 9, 2015, 9:27 am

    Bubba strikes again, you want to do this to a 91/30 fine but an m91?
    Import stamps are a fact of life & I have sold mosins with import stamps for over $500.

  • GoatDriver57 March 9, 2015, 9:24 am

    Thanks for the posting on a popular subject. Its great to hear both side opinions of this weapon that has seen it all. OP, don’t be offended with the opposing comments of your fine conversion, at least you had the stuff to submit, stand and take the few tomato hits. I had wondered to what it would be to modify any one of my two, selected best out of ten, hex copy and carbine. I ordered the hex first, thinking to chop it shorter for a close-in hog gun, then the carbine was offered, like them both in the OEM. They’ll stay that way and will enjoy both scoped. Good post.

  • Ven March 9, 2015, 9:11 am

    I hate shooting a mosin. They kick like a mule. Not fun at all. Will shoot an 06 all day long. My mosin stays in the rack until someone decides they want to try it. Before they do, they have to agree to clean the damn thing as well. After a few rounds most people decide it’s not for them.

  • tt March 9, 2015, 8:44 am

    A Finnish hex ruined. Sigh.

    • Administrator March 9, 2015, 9:15 am

      I’m going to answer one more of these because self appointed experts generally take this approach. Everything in guns eventually becomes “collectible,” simply because people can’t afford to collect anything else. Remember that these guns came into the country not that long ago at $39-$109 in retail price. A “Finnish Hex,” stamped CAI, was sold in the early 00s for maybe a little more than that, but not much more, if anything more. We have increased our money supply by 10x in the US since then, and inflation has eaten the value of your federal reserve currency to where the translated **value** of the gun is higher in dollars. The same orange stocked nice condition 91/30 that was $59.99 in 2002 is now $300. The more scarce varieties have also come up, and as a poor man’s collectible, mostly fueled by C&R licensees.

      Note that this “Hex” was purchased in a large firearm auction in a lot of 7 guns, including a Carcano and one of those Austrian 88s in pristine condition, for $1,500…at the top of the firearm boom post sandy hook. The Carcano was the reason for the purchase of the lot, because of the Oswald article we did here. Those Carcanos were the Nagants of the 1970s and you could buy them for $10 each from buckets in most gunshops. Today those same buckets have $300 Nagants. That should tell you more about the dollar than it does about the guns.

      Read the article here entitled “Buy Guns not Gold.”

      • joe March 9, 2015, 12:17 pm

        I agree with you Sir, I bought a 91/30 dragoon for $39 + tax early 2000’s, it had a shot out bore and corroded. I sold the rifle last year for $250. I don’t see the purpose in collecting these rifles, if someone chooses to have fun with a project so be it. Good write up and sorry so many people bash the idea of an American past time, i guess you struck a nerve with a touchy crowd.

        • Rick December 28, 2015, 10:44 am

          “I agree with you Sir, I bought a 91/30 dragoon for $39 + tax early 2000’s, it had a shot out bore and corroded. I sold the rifle last year for $250. I don’t see the purpose in collecting these rifles,”

          You don’t see the irony (and “purpose”) in six-fold appreciation?

    • gerald takala March 9, 2015, 11:02 am

      I liked the article,frankly too many self made experts out there who just want to pee in someone else’s wheaties, so let”s remember shooting is supposed to be for fun and relaxation not bitching.

    • gerald takala March 9, 2015, 11:02 am

      I liked the article,frankly too many self made experts out there who just want to pee in someone else’s wheaties, so let”s remember shooting is supposed to be for fun and relaxation not bitching.

  • shootstraight March 9, 2015, 8:39 am

    Thank’s for doing a review where if a poor person like me want’s to do a gun project just for fun he can! We don’t all have the money to purchase the all mighty AR’s (some like me don’t care them )and then buy all the little gadget’s that you can put on them which seems to be the most popular to do in this modern era of the tactical this and that, which is fine if that’s what you like.Im just not into them but these old Mosin’s can be a fun project and far as I know nowhere is it written that you have to have set up for shooting 200 to 1,000 as one person who say’s Mosin’s are junk claim’s but I’ve shot my (original equipment) mosin past 200 yards with no problem’s.I think they would work great for deer hunting in places like penn.W.Viorginia,Ky. where most shot’s are way under 200yards(my opinion).

  • jjd76539 March 9, 2015, 8:29 am

    These are nice rifles to have.. But as for using them for defensive purposes they are very outdated ..We live in the world of semi auto land now. They are fun to practice marksman skill with and could be used for hunting.. it is not a rifle that I would spend any money on upgrading. you will never get that money back out of it.. firearms can be good investments especially if you hold on to them for 20 plus years .. But hey to each their own.. It is still somewhat a free country..

    • dittohead March 10, 2015, 3:57 am

      Wow! Lots of morons on this thread. If I paint my car Green, it is not because I think that someone will buy it at a higher price!??? I paint it the color I want to drive while I have it!!! When I sell it, I assume that I will sell it to someone who is willing to pay what I think it is worth at that time, or I won’t sell it to them. Same with ANY gun! This guy may want $1000 minimum for this CUSTOM gun in the future. The may be a lot of people who would not give him $50 for it but there is bound to be another person like him who likes this gun as he does and sees it as being worth what he is asking, but that may not be for a hundred years and it will be his great great grandson who is selling it for some reason. It does not matter what you IDIOTs think about his conversion of HIS gun.

  • Frank March 9, 2015, 8:20 am

    You zero a hunting rifle (or any rifle) at the range you intend to shoot. Zeroing at 200 yards when you have no intention of shooting over 50 with the gun in question is ludicrous. Battle sights on most WWII guns are a minimum of 200 yards, many 300. That’s why a lot of people think they shoot like crap at 100 yards.

    I’ve used a simple reflex sight on a scout scope mount (the type that replaces the stock rear site with no drilling/tapping) with good results. Easy to adjust to bring groups where you want, and easy to return to original condition.

    I agree that the gun in question had some collectible value, but it’s still a relatively cheap and plentiful gun right now. As long as the owner is getting what they want out of it it’s theirs to do what they want with. When 1903 Springfields were cheap and plentiful a lot of them got sporterized – some well done, some butchered (or “bubbad”). Argue about collectibility all you want, if I buy something it’s mine to do with as I please. At least this one was well done and made into a more servicable hunting rifle.

    • Mike March 9, 2015, 9:29 am

      The M91 model used in the article is not at all plentiful, and hasn’t been in some time.

  • petru sova March 9, 2015, 8:17 am

    It never ceases to amaze me how ignorant some gun owners are. Lets look at this from a financial point of view. Whenever you sportsitize (BUTCHER) a military rifle you:

    1. Devalue the worth of the gun by a good 50 per cent immediately.

    2. The money spent BUTCHERING the gun is money you will never recoup on a resale.

    3. The future collector value is destroyed forever.

    NOW READ THIS CAREFULLY; NATO COUNTRIES LAST YEAR ARE REQUIRED TO DESTROY ALL MILITARY AND POLICE WEAPONS THAT ARE OBOSOLETE SO THAT LOW PRICE MOSIN WILL IN THE FUTURE BE SOON WORTH BIG BUCKS IF IT IS IN ITS ORIGINAL STATE. BUTCHER THE GUN AND IT IS WORTH NOTHING, TODAY, TOMORROW AND FOREVER.

    • Administrator March 9, 2015, 8:49 am

      This is such bad advice. Eastern block guns are generally worth utility value and nothing more. There is very little if any provinence, and the rifles have been arsenaled and rearsenalled over the years. A Mosin with **no import marks** in great shape is worth money and is collectible. Others will never be worth more than utility value. Even the venerable M1 Garand, without provinence and some sort of glory involved is still worth utility value today. The federal reserve notes are always worth less so of course the “price” of the guns go up, but only in inflated currency value, not real value. Guns are always a great store of wealth, like gold and silver, when you want to keep up with inflation.

      Cutting down a rifle to sporterize it generally will take away value, but not 50% by any stretch when it comes to utility, generic milsurps. There are sporterized enfields built in the 70s that are worth more than military enfields that lack significant provinence. Nagants are not scarce and will never be scarce. They are not an elegant rifle, but as a utility rifle they are well worth sporterizing.

      It is of course also explained in the article that you need not damage your rifle for these modifications. It just so happened that these barrel bands were more patient than the author.

      • Petru Sova March 9, 2015, 9:58 am

        If we follow your logic then German Sniper rifles (THAT WERE BUTCHERED IN THE PAST) would be worth little today. Try buying one today for less than $3,000 or how about any of the American Snipers as well. How about the Czech Mountain Carbines that were butchered by the hundreds. Now look what they are bringing. Your assumption that East Block weapons are never going to be worth anything IS TO IGNORE MILITARY COLLECTING HISTORY.

        I forgot to mention that YOU ARE DESTORYING HISTORY AS THESE FINE WEAPONS WILL NEVER BE MADE AGAIN AND FUTURE GENERATIONS WILL CONDEMN YOU FOR WHAT YOU HAVE DONE.

        • Administrator March 9, 2015, 10:06 am

          A german or any other sniper rifle has what is called provinence. People know who owned it when, and this in turn creates value. Post WWII nobody knew that those guns were ever going to be worth anything because there were so many of them. And the American guns were well documented as to which ones served and which did not. Other M1 Garands are to this day being sold at close to utility value, in today’s devalued dollars. You can also still purchase a utility grade, reparkerized 1903 Springfield for no more the cost of a new deer rifle today. The Mosin-Nagants are not original, not one of them that has import marks. They were taking out of storage and rearsenaled so that any provinence they might have had was lost long ago. The receiver may say 1943 on it, but there is no provinence proving that it fought in anything other than out of a wooden box in 2004 when an exporter purchased it out of a warehouse. There is no history to preserve, and parroting the same foolish lines about future generations only proves that you are a parrot, not that you know anything or have any legitimate insight into the guns, their value, or history.

      • Scott Warner March 9, 2015, 11:57 am

        Okay, after reading all the comments from all the “experts “, I felt compelled to put in my two cents. M N’s are not junk. They are battle proven arms of a another era. I bought one at Gander Mountain on sale for $90. put a thick rubber pad on the butt (Ebay about $10) and had the charging handle turn down (again Ebay $35), took it to a range with a friend and punched 6″ an10” steel at 100 to 300 yrds on iron sites, until we ran out of ammo (six boxes.) The decelerator pad worked great! Made it feel like a .22 almost. Turning down the charging handle was to facilitate mounting a long relief scope, that we zero’d to 100 yrds. And he regularly hits steel at 800+ yards. My friend had so much fun shooting my Mosin, (1937 hex) that he got a couple of his own. a ’44 90/31 and an earlier carbine. Junk? not with this much fun and accuracy. I think that $110 stock and a trigger is not a “ton of money” as someone said (idiot). Not when for less than $400 dollars you get a “knockaround” field rifle that will out shoot a $1000+ Hunting piece that you would worry over cause you spent so much on it. And don’t forget, the greatest sniper’s of the early 20th century (a lot of them women) used the Mosin-Nagant. Collectable value is also in the eye’s of a collector. Millions of Mosin’s mean not collectable. In a thousand years if there are only a few hundred left in the world then maybe yea it’ll be collectable. Even the author’s.

      • Jim McMahon March 9, 2015, 12:19 pm

        Thank you. I am mightily tired of the various “purists” who decide that a (fill in almost any gun, car or motorcycle) is “collectable”. Collector value is even more subjective than resale value in books like BBGV. Know what it is worth? It is worth what someone will pay you, today. If you think a particular gun is collectable, good on you, collect away. But stop this sanctimonious blather about butchering, ruining, etc. Just because YOU didn’t buy it does not give you the right to criticize others who bought it to modify.

        • Mike Weber March 9, 2015, 3:38 pm

          Jim
          Thank you, Thank you for your article. And I would also like to thank all the people with comments, good or bad. If you don’t hear the negative then what do you have to compare too. So to all, thanks. Excellent article and responce strain.
          I myself and my sons own a few Nagant (paid less than 100 each) plus “cheap” ammo. I love the sardine cans, just hate opening. I am a novice/amateur, so enjoy reading both negative and possitive info. And since I own a few of these “pieces” of shit, just for the fun, and to educate myself I plan on sporterizing one just for the educational value. A friends son sporterized one, but he used PLASTIC stock(look at the dash on the old 70’s cars- why I like my 1960 truck-metal dash) I like sleak old beautiful wood. So thank you for info on this beautiful stock. I’m a lil older now and can’t see the silver dollar at 100yds so already bought a scope that mounts on ladder rear sights. I use these guns as barter trying to improve my collection/hobby. I know sporterizing it the gun will still only be worth “nothin” but looking forward to project.
          As said, I’m totaly novice/amateur, but do have an 03/30-06 4 digit serial number, BUT it was sporterized after war, totaly depreciated value, willing to sell for just a few hundred dollars but keep threatening to try and put back in military stock, just because it was made 3rd month, so Nagant project is classroom for me. I also have a 1943 Gewalt German semi auto that stock was broke on surrender so it was sporteize, breaks my heart not original. As said, we have 1/2 dozen Nagants as well as 1943 03 30-06 original military/ a few CMP M1 Garands, K-98, Enfield 303, Arasaka 36 & 99 to name a few that goes with my ole Marlin 1887/89 44/70(made 1891) Winchesters 1895 38/55 & 32/70, plus other “Cowboy” level action pre-65 and 1967 Winchester 30-06 and 1967 Marlin 30-06. Mini 14 in AR platform etc…. and when we go shooting with friends I have pleasure of being able to bring a variety each time(yes I shoot them all. Same as a collectable car or motorcycle I drive and ride regularly) BUT I always bring one of these “cheap” “Junk” “Pieces of shit” Nagants which kicks like a mule and eats “cheap” ammo. AND will always include them in my rotation ’cause they are such a pleasure to shoot.
          Sorry I dragged on, But again, to Jim and all replyers(positive and negative) thank you for the article and education. I hope my project turns my Nagant into a piece of art like Jim’s came out. Extra deer/pig rifle I don’t care if someone drops or scratches. Won’t be worth shit EXCEPT to me. And that is the only one that counts.

          Again Jim, Thank You.
          Mike

      • Kevin March 9, 2015, 9:17 pm

        Says the “administrator” that didn’t even know the Mosin has a safety.

        Not to mention, the fact they have import marks is completely meaningless to your “value” hypothesis given the fact ALL imported Mosins have the marks by law, and many Mosins DO in fact sell for premium values, such as legitimate ex-snipers, PU snipers with original scopes, and rarer varieties and examples, ALL of which are import marked.

        I rarely write such scathing replies, but please do some research before penning an article, it seems the real reason you bring up this straw-man argument is simply a lame attempt to prevent people from calling you a BUBBA.

        • Administrator March 9, 2015, 9:56 pm

          You know, you morons are such idiots sometimes. Everyone knows how to use the bolt hold on a Mosin. It was interesting to see how many numb nut prozac infused fools would mention it, and you can apparently count yourself twice.

          • YNot1911 March 11, 2015, 4:18 pm

            HaHaHa! Best reply I’ve seen without cuss words in years!

      • Surly Old Guy March 10, 2015, 6:24 pm

        That is exactly what “everyone” used to say about Mausers and Enfields and Springfields, back in the day. “Not historically significant” “They made millions of them” “They’re just $20 rifles” and all the sort of nonsense. And now they’ve dried up. Now the pawn shops have plenty of once-historic rifles that gather dust because Bubba swiss-cheesed the receiver trying to mount a scope, and took his belt sander to the stock, then applied his “woodwerkin skilz” to shortening and checkering it to look just like the grown-ups’ rifles.

    • bob h March 9, 2015, 10:37 am

      NOW READ THIS CAREFULLY- When anyone uses words like “immediately”, “butchering”, “never”, or “forever” to condemn sporterizing any military rifle sight unseen they are mistaken.

  • jim rooze March 9, 2015, 8:07 am

    I have a mosin carbin and a 91/30. and love both. 91/30 more acurate and both do have safety end of bolt not easy to set. Surplus ammo cheap and acurate no problms with miss fire but is corrosive. I agree don’t spend moneyon a good battle rifle. Im keeping one for a neighnor when SITF and he needs a weapon.

  • Alfred Sauve March 9, 2015, 7:58 am

    Since my Mosin has no collectible value and I wanted to expend minimum funds on it, I cut down the barrel, to 18″, and the stock to a sporter length. I found a slip-on ring front sight mount and for under $150 I have a short, handy express rifle.

    http://sauve.smugmug.com/Gun-General/i-nM4bkZ5/0/XL/IMG_0385-XL.jpg

    • BigR March 9, 2015, 6:27 pm

      @Alfred Sauve
      I like it! Does it kick harder with the shorter barrell and less wood on the stock?

      • Alfred Sauve March 9, 2015, 9:04 pm

        No worse than a 30/30 of the same size. It’s a back up, end-of-the-world-last-ditch, load-to-a-neighbor, gun.

    • St even J Christensen March 15, 2015, 8:45 pm

      I think running a full length stock would look better, even with the shorter barrel. Not so sure I like your configurational look, to me begs of being a semi-auto close quarters weapon, but its a bolt action and this would be a tough one to get through the fight with. This thing has got some awful kick to it I bet, with the shorter barrel! Like your motive as a backup arm the neighbors end of world wwIII if needed gun, I could see that. Im going to sporterize something surplus, not sure yet what, and probably go with a an old military sniper scope or a RedDot. I wish I still had my MN rifle, was a blast to shoot and one of the first firearms I’d purchased as an adult. Very dependable rifle to say the least. Never a single problem with mine, other than the Stalin recoil tatoos as someone has mentioned in here!

  • George Dreisch March 9, 2015, 7:53 am

    Seems a very common occurrence to have the rifling at the muzzle of many of these rifles to be eroded by unguided cleaning rods. I have re-crowned a few, removing about .185~.250 in of length with good reductions in group size, with good ammo. I use a plug gauge to find the diameter at of the lands somewhere rearward of the muzzle, usually >.25″ and the gauge found to fit is usually in .300~.303″ range. Taking incrementally larger gauge (.301″ for a .300″ land diameter) and measuring the depth it can be inserted, will give you a idea of how far back the rifling has been eroded.

    • YNot1911 March 11, 2015, 4:06 pm

      Ahhh, does my heart good to see an actual gunsmith monitoring these forums…

  • ed March 9, 2015, 6:56 am

    So you are not recommending buy the scope thats fits the rifle????

    • Administrator March 9, 2015, 7:11 am

      You could bring the rifle to a gunsmith to drill and tap the receiver for a scope, but I’m not a fan of the “scout scopes” most people suggest for the nagant. The only easy to install scope mount is on top of the sight ramp, and I’ve used it, but eh.

      • Balaso March 9, 2015, 4:15 pm

        You should check out the jmeck mount.

        • YNot1911 March 11, 2015, 4:04 pm

          Just checked ’em out… Looks really solid and doesn’t modify or change the original metal or rear sight… but looks like it does modify the stock a bit for the band that straps the mount. Seems a bit pricey, but it also seems like a one-man operation, too.

      • Steven J Christensen March 15, 2015, 8:32 pm

        Regarding scopes, these rifles were also converted/manufactured by Russian armaries for sniper use with turned down bolt for this purpose. They are a bit rare, and can fun upwards of $500 if one knows what he’s got. There are pics on line, also see the motion picture “Enemy at the Gates.” this MN is featured in that movie! Pretty cool.
        When Big5 was importing/selling these in mid 1990s I picked up a long rifle for $69.00. Loved it, fun to shoot, powerful and accurate round. Had to buy a box of Normandy rounds for it because the surplus ammo was scarce, $36.00 a box of 20! Then the surplus rounds came available, a surplus wrapped pack of 10 rounds of 7.62×54 for about 6$ bucks! Corrosive, but a good cleaning took care of the mess. And the brass cases if you were fortunate, could be reloaded. Very strong action, solid shooter, and accurately powerful. Lot of kick, but you dont go out with these to fire several hundred rounds through. You take along to compliment the assortment of fun you take with you on your outting! And they are fun! And worth every penny if you can get one on the cheap. Not junk, just in the fact that they function and they were a servicable military weapon that proved a success for its time. And would still do the job in its right place and scenario.
        So as far as collectible goes, considering these are $150 to a few hundred bucks now, anything that has appreciated in value for whatever reason is collectible. It has a return value, it has history, you can trace the proof marks and sometimes the ser# on the MNs, and they are indeed still in use today in some primitive parts of the world. They are collectible as far as that goes, and considering even a basic study of past military firearms of the world that have served in battle, these are most certainly always in the mix of the data.
        To sporterize any firearm is almost always going to cost more than the gun is essentially worth to the knowledgable market. But those whom sporterize dont do it for resale necessarily, but for personal satisfaction and uniquness. So be it as long as its functional and serves its purpose and arms another legal law abiding American citizen for whatever lawful and constitutionally guaranteed purpose that person shall deem necessary. There are certainly quite the production quantities out there that doing so isnt going to affect its market value or notoriety. If you do have a carbine, or a specimen with a turned down bolt, and even sling mounts for that matter, I would recommend you do some research first so you are modifying what you believe you are intending to modify, and not something you would not consider altering due to “collector value,” if you knew better. On another note, I think there is enough good information and access to it out there now, that the modest enthusiast could turn out a pretty decent sporter him/hersself. Keep it safe, keep it firing, purchase ammo, and enjoy “your investment” my brothers and sisters in arms! I wish I would have kept mine, Id have made money, and still be enjoying shooting it! Cool gun, the crude production finishing, the low cost, make it that much more curious and appealing.

        • Administrator March 15, 2015, 10:02 pm

          If you were a regular reader you would have seen our review of two of the sniper rifles.

  • Joseph J. F March 9, 2015, 6:51 am

    Looks like a nice conversion but I will put it up against my change over. First to go was the stock. Replaced it with an Archangel, next to go was the trigger, replaced with a timney set up. The bolt was changed to a 90 degree bent setup. To top off the sighting I installed a PFI Rapid Reticle RR-Evolution scope. I can reach out to 750 yds plus with no loss of target. This is my Mosin Nagant 91-30 battle weapon.

    • john March 9, 2015, 7:53 am

      Please tell me who did your 90 degree lever retro? I’ve got a m44 I’d like to do the same, thanks.

      John

  • C R Holt March 9, 2015, 6:50 am

    Looks good.I am interested in buying your old stock set.

  • Mike in Maine March 9, 2015, 6:44 am

    Zeroing a M/N at 50 yards is a joke and you know it. If you have or own ANY RIFLE, TO INCLUDE CARBINE, and don’t take the time to respect the weapon, and ‘iron sight’ zero it with a known ‘stock’ ammo at at least 200 yard’s, then you have no business owning it, much less using it, other than to defend your home and family.

    • Tom March 9, 2015, 9:24 am

      not sure where you got your information on zeroing a rifle but you are mistaken. Any rifle with stock iron sights perform better zeroed in at 40 to 50 yards than at 200 plus. I am a veteran and own many rifles including a Mosin nagant and all of them were zeroed at 50 yards with the exception of my .50 cal and I can put 5 rounds into a circle the size of a quarter at 300 yards. Anyone who has been in the service will tell you that zeroing at closer ranges gives you better accuracy for longer range.

      • Administrator March 9, 2015, 9:31 am

        This is a matter of ballistic calculation, not inherent accuracy. Any round at 300 yards travels in a significant arc, and the bullet will pass the point of elevation at 300 yards at generally between 25 and 50 yards on its way up. But this has to be calculated based on your actual ballistics, calculating trajectory using velocity, bullet weight and ballistic coefficient.

        • Lee March 9, 2015, 11:58 am

          Absolutely right! A 5.56 55gr. round is what I use in my AR15 and I sight it 1 1/4″ low of bulls eye at 25 yds. This gives it a zero at 50 yds. and again at 200 yds. The only reason I do this is because I can place my shots much easier, with my 71 yr. old eyes, at 25 yds. and can then verify 50 and 200. Just my .02 worth.

    • Alex December 28, 2015, 8:43 am

      Funny that I’ve never known anyone to do this. I guess the military and kaw enforcement have been doing it wrong the whole time. Maybe they should consult with you. Dipshit.

  • J Holt March 9, 2015, 6:41 am

    You didn’t need to hammer of the barrel bands. you turn the little screw right to loosen them. Looks like You bubba’d a Finn M91 which would have had some collectability.

  • John King March 9, 2015, 6:34 am

    I have a Morin-Nagant rifle with the original scope, and if it is said that there are three problems with this rifle, then I can say I have all three fixed. I can pick off a target at a minimum of 300 yards every single time, I have shoot many rifles in my time and I can say that this weapon is one of the most accurate weapons I have ever shoot, and has the knock down power of an M1.

    • HuckFynn March 9, 2015, 8:11 am

      Totally agree. Open sights at 300 yards shooting off the hood of a car, and I STILL get a tight grouping, and can hit a milk jug pretty damned often at 300 yards. But it does have some kick…lol.

    • Slingblade December 28, 2015, 5:37 pm

      Yeah and I can say that clearly you have not shot any really accurate weapons of that is the case!!!

  • louis villanueva March 9, 2015, 5:06 am

    how can you replace the front sight to one with the hood and where can I buy one.

  • Mosin Zealot March 9, 2015, 4:40 am

    This was a collectible rifle (regardless of import marks) until the stock was severely damaged by removing the barrel bands so poorly. It is extremely important to note ALL M91 BARREL BANDS HAVE REVERSE THREADS! This means right turn to loosen or spread band to slide off stock. Left turn to tighten or pull band tight around stock. There are NO replacement parts for broken bands. Only another complete band for originality. It is very hard to see in any pics of the barrel shank but placement of the Finnish property mark, SA in a box appears that this is a Finnish M91 model. This rifle in the Finn stock would be more accurate than in an aftermarket stock. The Finns would shim the action in the stock allowing the barrel to float in the stock channel. Despite the modifications being reversible, value has been lost because of the damage to the Finn made M91 stock. And not all metal finishes are the same either. The rifles shown in the example above have most likely all been reblued at a refurbishment process sometime during their life. Not all Mosin Nagant rifles of any model or manufacture made refurb processes. But those are not easy to find. Some have nice patinas on original or faded original finishes too. The barrel bands pictured are also not the only three types. The one on the left is in fact an uncommon and hard to find “button band” style. The button at the bottom gives its name. Solid Dragoon and 91/30 style barrel bands are all theoretically interchangeable. M91 bands have early (pictured in middle) and later style bands. Finn model bands are more unique to the Finn model of rifle. I can appreciate the author’s time in to this project, but this may be cheaper to do with a 91/30 purchased from $120-$165 depending on price than a Finn M91 which could in some cases cost twice as much. But the Finn barrel and length should prove more accurate than a 91/30.

    • TangoDown March 9, 2015, 11:25 am

      This was the BEST reply and certainly MORE informative than all others that had really nothing to add to the discussion ( other than running this guy down for possibly ruining a decent, “historically-valuable” rifle). Would “I” do it? NEVER. But that question IS ALREADY ANSWERED if it comes home with me. No, I wouldn’t re-do or ‘sporterize’ any rifle..as of this date. But…if somebody WANTS to ruin a perfectly good rifle with historical value AND HE OWNS IT? Oh well. ‘I’ wouldn’t smash guitars on stage like these morons do either, pisses me off to see it happen! I can comment, being a drummer (I’m close to being a musician anyway, ha ha). People ARE people and do questionable (stupid) stuff, period.

    • vince March 13, 2015, 1:25 am

      Yup, ruined the stock of a nice finnish capture m91
      .Author had better taken 5 minutes to check what he had instead of just hammering off the bands. This model goes for about 3 to 4 times more then a regular 91/30 refurb…

    • Aaronbern December 28, 2015, 5:05 am

      Every time a finn rifle gets bubba’d Simo Häyhä’s angel cries.

    • 54rImproved.com December 28, 2015, 3:12 pm

      Well said.

      To me. I dont see what the big deal is. The more people that butcher up a ‘collectible’ mosin, just makes the value of the remaining go up that much more. 🙂

      I do cut up mosins on a regular basis (preferably T53’s). To me, a gun is a tool. Much like an axe. It must serve its purpose for ME (<-the owner). Therefore it must fit me, and suit me, otherwise I dont need it.

      However, if I have full knowledge of the collector value of said rifle, I pass it on. And I do have my own collection of ones I will never alter and ones that have been completely upgraded.

      No matter what path you choose, ITS YOUR PATH. I'll never judge you for your choices.
      History is just that. History.

  • brigond March 9, 2015, 4:31 am

    There are so many variations of mosins. Yes , there is collectable value in many of them. If you don’t know what variation you have, with or without an import mark than you can be ruining a collectable rifle. Also, import marks are accepted as an unavoidable evil to collectors.

  • Cole March 8, 2015, 2:40 pm

    The Mossin does have a safety, you pull the firing pin back and turn it to the left locking it on the receiver, might
    Not be “easy” but it is a safety design.

    • Caleb March 9, 2015, 8:13 am

      That’s what I was thinking.

    • rob March 10, 2015, 7:10 pm

      Hell in the Winter, too. LOL

  • Mike March 8, 2015, 1:21 pm

    Nice project.
    Now I’m itching to do something similar with one of the carbine models.

    I’m thinking I would like to replace the rear site with a traditional type flip-up leaf express site.

    • Mikeandthebear March 9, 2015, 7:03 am

      How can anyone justify puting this much money and time into a junk rifle when NEW rifles are available, in modern calibers, are available from Ruger, Savage and others. Get real people.

      • Mitch March 9, 2015, 7:43 am

        The Mosin Nagant is far from a “junk rifle” especially one like my Finnish M39 version of the Mosin Nagant rifle, made by SAKO, in 1944. Have you ever shot a 91/30 or any other Mosin? Not the smoothest action, or the best sights, but it fun, powerful and inexpensive to shoot. Try finding 30.06 or 7mm Winchester ammo for $.24 a round delivered to your door.
        So don’t put Mosin Nagant in the same pile as crappy French or Italian guns, the Mosin is a well built and rugged weapon, not graceful or stylish, and much better than throwing a rock and with addition or a quality stock like the author added, it can be a good looking and comfortable hunting and target gun taking down any mammal on the North American Continent.

        • mike March 9, 2015, 6:36 pm

          I guess that a lot of riflemen have not fired a British Enfield 303. I have had one since 1959 and there is no comparison . The British have it all over the Mosin, I can hit silver dollar at 100 yards without a scope. I even like it better than the M1 for accuracy. The bolt action is smooth and very easy to chamber. Plus you can take out the magazine or use stripper clips. Mosin is a pain to load, and it does a number on my shoulder. Of course in 1959 I paid $10.00 for it. All original.

          • Administrator March 9, 2015, 6:39 pm

            We actually have an Enfield article coming. They are indeed nifty and elegant firearms.

          • Jamison March 10, 2015, 5:28 pm

            If I could get .303 for what I can get 7.62X54R I might actually shoot my Enfield.

          • Ed Slaughter December 28, 2015, 6:27 pm

            I bought a jungle carbine fifteen years ago for about 150. It is great, but the days of cheap 303 seem to have come and gone. A friend of mine and I were just talking about that last month. I am afraid that may happen here someday as the surplus ammo goes away. I just bought my first one of these an M38 carbine it seems to be very robust has the strongest hammer spring I have ever seen. That makes putting the safety on all but impossible. The enfield is great I wished I own another and even lament I did not buy one that was converted to 410.

        • Wolf March 10, 2015, 1:25 pm

          From a historical perspective, this rifle has been responsible for picking off more Nazis than any other. Besides its reputation as a fascist buster, it is generally reliable and simple to strip and reassemble; though its recoil kick can make some nasty Stalingrad tattoos (bruises) on the shooter’s shoulder.

          • YNot1911 March 11, 2015, 2:38 pm

            There are websites that sell rubber replacements for the metal buttstocks. Works Great! About $15.00 or so. Takes sting out of the worst kicker of them all, the M44…

          • Robert Young December 28, 2015, 5:04 pm

            I used to have an FFL and have fired at least 80 M-44’s, 50 91/30’s and a few M38’s. I have NEVER had one that wouldn’t hit something the size of a softball at 100 yds. open sights! As for the stock, I have had 3 with the standard synthetic stock, which reduced the felt recoil greatly. If you are a “wuss”, buy a “Shooter’s Friend” from the manufacturer in Evansville, IN, BEST slip on I have ever tried! Polymer composition which even tamed a .375 H&H.

        • Doc Jackson March 10, 2015, 4:28 pm

          I heard there are a lot of those French rifles for sale. Never been fired, dropped once.

          • Maddog20470 March 10, 2015, 8:37 pm

            HAHAHAHA Love it!

          • Keith Brockmiller December 28, 2015, 8:19 am

            Love it. “Freedom Arms”?

        • James March 12, 2015, 6:59 am

          Exactly how much deader is the deer you shoot with your high dollar Ruger with the 1.50 per round cost than the one I shoot with my Mosin? Yea, I have several rifles to choose from Savage, Marlin, Mauser, Mosin I just choose to shoot the one I want. Not what the Jones think I should.

          • Robert Young December 28, 2015, 5:08 pm

            As for Russian ammo; I had a Russian Draganov with the original 4x scope and we would blow the end out of 12oz. beer bottles at 350 yards. Good enough for surplus ammo>

      • Some Guy March 9, 2015, 10:47 am

        Putting money into a 1898 design is senseless. For $350 to $500. you can buy as stated a modern design shooting modern cartridges. Depending on Russian ammo is not a smart move either.

        • rooster March 9, 2015, 1:05 pm

          you don’t know much about Russian ammo bubba !

          • PoormanPrepper March 9, 2015, 1:53 pm

            I’ll second that, Russian ammo is plenty dependable. Its got a big Berdan primer, plenty of power, and if you keep it dry its good for decades like all ammo. I’ve never had a round not go off when I wanted, and its great fun to shoot a historic rifles whether its Russian Mosin or Springfield’s 1903, ones just a whole lot cheaper to feed !!

          • YNot1911 March 11, 2015, 2:47 pm

            Hmmm, not only that, but ALL American ammunition manufacturers are required to “worm” their ammo, borrowing a phrase from the computer world. New ammo (and powder for reloading) has an expiration date, don’t ya know, and if yer ammo wasn’t made prior to a certain date, it will be NO GOOD by that expiration date. NOW, I’m not sure about the dates or times, but something like 1984 comes to mind (unless I’m thinkin’ George Orwell), and 12 or 15 years for length of storage. So, like the grocery store, better rotate yer stock, lest it become stale…

          • Merc1977 March 12, 2015, 3:49 pm

            That whole “expiration date” hooey was debunked long ago. No such thing. Ammo made now has as long a shelf-life as that made in the 1950’s.

          • Edward G December 28, 2015, 8:46 am

            I own 7 Mosin Nagants and I have NEVER had a misfire using Russian military surplus ammo. I have probably shot upwards of 2500 rounds of it. Quality control was the possibility of a stretch in the Gulag.

          • Archangel December 28, 2015, 11:51 pm

            Posted By YNot1911 March 11, 2015, 2:47 pm
            LIAR LIAR, PANTS ON FIRE!
            My “corrosive primer Russian [(русский язык) or (russkiy yazyk) take your pick] Spam cans” were packaged in 1973, and that makes it about 43 years old.
            It still goes BANG every time I pull my home Modified Trigger “crisp, short pull, with no play”, and I see that the complimentary fireball at the barrel tip is still included with every BOOM.

        • mtman2 March 9, 2015, 6:29 pm

          And you better plan on reloading your own to compete with the ammo prices.
          I think the idea is for the not so cash secure to have a good shooting gun with cheap and plenty ammo ~!

      • TangoDown March 9, 2015, 11:01 am

        It is like a LOT of things in life. IF you have OR need to respond to a question like that…what’s “it WORTH” doing ‘this or that’ to a (YOU fill in the blank), then NEVER does the response suffice or never is the person asking the question satisfied. Rule of thumb (typically), IF you HAVE to answer a question WHY, then THEY will never understand in the first place. So, smile and wave ’em on!

        • Kurt March 9, 2015, 12:47 pm

          It has already been said ” if I have to explain it to you, you would not understand it anyway”
          I’m tierd of the so called purist weather we are talking guns,cars,mototrcyles or whatever.How many millons of M N were made?
          I wonder how many of the so called purist would turn their nose up to a G&H 03 Spingfield or Mauser, to me these are some of the best looking guns ever built.
          I have done lots of prodjects like this, some I regret and some I would do again.
          The point is the satification one gets from this sort of prodject,Its not the money I spent or not, Its about, I built this rifle and there might be many similar but this one is mine.
          Buba

          • ron March 9, 2015, 11:26 pm

            I have sporterized 3 Mosins so far very rewarding and fun projects.I would never had done this on my expensive rifles or shotguns.=3 unique looking rifles all are shooters never had a misfire and they can take a beating if your hunting ruff terrain

          • Surly Old Guy March 10, 2015, 1:07 am

            Griffin & Howe were skilled gunsmiths. Bubba in his trailer — using a framing hammer and a nail for a punch, a gouged up screwdriver from Walmart, and a brick for a polishing stone — is not going to turn out anything to be proud of.

            No matter how many coats of bedliner he applies to the stock, or how many fluorescent green “Punisher” skulls he stencils on it.

        • Just1Spark December 28, 2015, 2:56 pm

          lol well said Tango

          • John Russell December 29, 2015, 4:14 am

            I bet you are a real fun guy! My first Moisin was 9 bucks and it was sporterized as you described and was great fun to a 13 year old kid who never heard of Griffin or Howe…

      • Jim McMahon March 9, 2015, 11:17 am

        Nobody needs to “justify” a project like this. If your desire is to buy and shoot factory rifles, have a ball. If you don’t want to try and tart up some old military iron, then don’t. If you simply lack the skills or the imagination, don’t spout off about others who do. Just remember that just because YOU don’t think it is worth while to do so does not mean the rest of us share your opinion. So, can you do us all a favor and simply stop visiting these threads? You are entitled to an opinion, even to express it. Just don’t kid yourself that anyone on here gives a R.A. about it.

        • Sam Meyer March 9, 2015, 11:59 am

          Jim, Jim – refill that Prozac prescription and get back into anger management class bud – you are out of control.

          • R.D. Grey March 10, 2015, 11:51 am

            Jim’s just fine. Get off his ass. Very informative article. Thank you !!

        • JOHN December 28, 2015, 9:40 am

          ‘A’ ”MEN” NICE TO HEAR SOMEONE TELL THE TRUTH, EVEN BETTER TO SEE IT WRITTEN IN PLAIN ENGLISH NOW ALL WE NEED TO DO IS READ LEARN AND RESPECT EACH OTHERS OPINION…
          ONTARIO CANADA WAVING A FRIENDLY HAND…

        • Gary December 28, 2015, 3:55 pm

          Actually every time someone tries to “tart up (aka bubba) some old military iron”, it’s music to my ears. Why? It destroys the collector/historic value of the weapon, making the ones I own worth more… so thank you! 🙂

      • Sam Meyer March 9, 2015, 11:56 am

        Agreed!! Where does the author live that non-collectible Mosins (that’s most of them IMHO) are selling for $200 to $350??? Get real – this article should be titled “How to convert an old $150 rifle to an old $400 rifle”. Not that I don’t like milsurps – I own and shoot an M44, a 91/30, a Yugo M48, a 1903A3, an H&R Garand, a K-31, 3 Swedish Mausers, and 2 SKS’s – all as delivered from the arsenal and un-bubbaed with replacement do-dads.I just don’t believe that it makes a lot of sense to spend a ton of money trying to make them into something they were never designed or meant to be when there are so many alternative weapons on the market that will deliver better accuracy at very reasonable prices. Oh course, if you’re an inveterate tinkerer with tons of time on your hands and lots of disposable cash maybe……..just can’t figure out a good answer to the “Why?” question other than 7.62 x 54 is cheap and available. You can buy a lot of 30-06, .308, .270 etc. for that extra $200 – $250 spent on upgrading a non-collectible firearm that was god-awful overpriced to begin with if you paid $200 to $350 for it originally..

        • Ernie March 9, 2015, 1:10 pm

          I own 4 different Mosin-Nagants M38, M39, M44 and 1891/30. All are great shooters and accurate beyond my expectations. I modified the M38 with an ATI nylon stock, a bent bolt and mounted a mosin-nagant side mount scope. My 1981/30 shoots very well with open sights and I put a Huber trigger on it. My M39 is just awesome without any changes to it. If you want a lighter rifle, get the ATI upgrade kit for $119.00, which includes a stock, a bent bolt kit and a scope mount which puts the scope right above the bolt. Nuff said! or spend $177.00 for a super ProMag Industries AA9130 Archangel Stock With adjustable Cheek Rest and pull for Mosin-Nagant with a removable magazine, both from Amazon.com.

        • Michael Keim March 9, 2015, 1:24 pm

          Nobody cares what you think. It wasn’t your rifle and it wasn’t your money so it wasn’t any of your business. It was an article on a project the writer did so why not read it as such.

          • John Russell December 29, 2015, 4:17 am

            Excellent comment. So old grouch needs to go back under his egocentric rock.

        • George/gtl4hire March 9, 2015, 6:39 pm

          I feel confident saying that at one time or another everyone has spent money on something that later on they were unhappy with. I’m not saying that it is right or wrong or even stupid as some have suggested to spend money on a Mosin Nagano rifle. I agree with Jim McMahon the individual doesn’t have to justify his project! As long as it doesn’t affect my money in any kind of way, then I suggest that he or she spend their money on whatever makes them happy. I found out a long time ago that I have my hands full managing my own business and affairs.

          • YNot1911 March 11, 2015, 2:56 pm

            Amen!

        • Wayne Clemon December 28, 2015, 10:18 am

          but it’s a lot more fun shooting a mosin with a timney trigger

      • Winston March 9, 2015, 4:50 pm

        @Milkeandthe: Commissioned in 1891…Mosin Nagants stayed in constant production longer than any US made military rifle. AR15 clones still have a number of years to go.
        Calling it “junk” is bit of American arrogance. 10 million Mosins have been imported into North America. Calibre of 7.62x54r L round still in use worldwide and is the longest produced military cartridge in the world. “Junk” as you stated might apply to M1903 Springfields in comparison. No foreign militaries wanted those things. Too bad bubbas are ruining M91 variant historical rifles in these pictures. Dumb.

        • Viet Vet March 9, 2015, 7:02 pm

          You are an idiot. What you fail to realize is IT IS MY WEAPON. I’ll do with it as I please and DON’T need to ask your or anyone else’s permission. I have a 43 izzy with an Archangel stock, Tmney trigger set with no over travel and 2 1/2 lb pull, polished and bent bolt and optics. With match grade ammo nice MOA at 800 meters. Will go further just haven’t tried it yet. Try that with your stock Mosin.

        • JR December 28, 2015, 9:16 am

          Not to be nitpicking but the British .303 holds that record not the Russian 7.62x54R.

      • Aldaron March 9, 2015, 5:17 pm

        Perhaps because he can–When a person has 30 or 40 modern rifles (or more) it’s kinda fun having something like this to play around with–a person should never count their pleasure in pennies –just enjoy it

      • Tom Powell March 9, 2015, 9:46 pm

        Junk rifle? Where was such a rifle mentioned, you dumbshit

      • Jim March 9, 2015, 11:03 pm

        Why? Really?? Because it’s a fun project. And if you get a good bore you can achieve M.O.A or similar groups. This caliber is pretty much the equivalent on our .308 as far as energy goes, plus with factory cheap ammo you can afford to shoot it much more. Mine easily shoots sub MOA groups! (Scoped)

      • Surly Old Guy March 10, 2015, 1:00 am

        Those “modern” rifles are made as cheaply as possible, to be shot a couple of times a year, and then sit in the closet until next deer season. They’re not “better” just cheaper to assemble from powdered-metal injection molding, plastic and stampings.

      • stone March 10, 2015, 3:47 am

        The Mosin nagant is an excellent rifle…if they were not so they would not have been made for so long..not alot of changes since first made…I read in the article that they had no safety…not true someone is simply not well versed in the nagant. the nagant safety feature is the knurled turning on the end of the bolt, pull out and rotate to the side…firing pin deactivated. it does take a strong hand tho. mine was made in 46 russian made..my dad brought it back from korea in 53 and gave it to me when i was a kid. still shoots accurately iron sites…my grand dad did shorten the barrel for me and put on a new site and crowned the barrel. original stock shortened a bit. and a re-tempered trigger spring… one of the nicest shooters I ever owned. I have owned a few of these over the years and sold them to my friends. not one complaint. This one will be passed down to my boys in time. I shoot silver dollar size groups at 100 yrds…norma ammo and my own reloads, all day long. i recommend to anyone pick one up …inspect it well…and buy the best one you can find…still cheaper than a brand new rifle even when you upgrade it and you will have a custom rifle that will last longer than you do…Dad is gone now, gramps too. and this rifle will be around long after im dust. happy shooting..and as always be safe with your rifle, and know what and where you are shooting.there is no better safety feature than a safe shooter……

      • GaryGary December 28, 2015, 10:25 am

        100% correct these old clunkers are way past their prime.

      • Archangel December 28, 2015, 11:21 pm

        Most people can’t shoot with iron sights further than this “JUNK” rifle can shoot.
        It’s about as powerful as a 30-06 (got one of those as well) and I have ammo that cost less than 1/4 of what 30-06 rounds cost me, and I paid less than $75 for it, and it’s in decent condition with an excellent bore.
        A powerful, battle proven rifle in great shape and 1760 rounds, (that’s one thousand seven hundred and sixty rounds) for under $500?
        Oh, I have 60 or so loose rounds to shoot before I have to open the first of 4 Spam cans.
        I know, stupid of me to buy a gun and enough ammo that if I shoot 100 rounds a year, it will last me over 17 years for less than most pay for just the gun.

    • Raymond Herbst March 9, 2015, 9:26 am

      Mosin does have a manual safety… a very manual safety that takes some strength to pull it on. Technically, yes it does have a safety… practicality, no it doesn’t have a safety!

      • mike March 9, 2015, 3:34 pm

        the safety on my mosin works just fine

    • Ronbo6 March 9, 2015, 10:53 am

      We collectors have a name for people who out of ignorance do things to original collectible rifles.
      That name is “Bubba”, and it is just exactly as complimentary as it sounds.
      You took a $150 rifle, spent at least that much more on it, and to my eyes ended up with an uglier rifle wITH NO HISTORY NOW, that shoots not one whit better than it would have shot if you only shimmed and free floated the rifle in the original stock.

      For Shame!

      Oh, and a Mosin Nagant DOES have a safety. Maybe it is a bit difficult to apply, but you are NOT going to inadvertently disengage it.

      • thisguy0651 March 9, 2015, 11:50 am

        I have a name for someone who likes to tell others how they should treat their possessions, it is called a dumb shit liberal.

        for shame!!

        see how that works ya narrow minded twit.

        • Winston March 9, 2015, 4:55 pm

          @thisguy0651: I dunno man, the GOP loves Big Gov’t, their unending wars for profits, and just like the DEMS, hates most all civil rights.

        • Jim March 9, 2015, 11:12 pm

          I’m not going to start with the name calling, but I do agree with you that It’s your gun….Do whatever you want with it! OK, I wont mess with my Colt Python or other expensive collectables. But a 100-200 Red Block rifle? Some times I think we have commies amongst us! But, alas, I would not alter a true keeper collectable. Save it for the less valuable ones.

      • Wayne Clemon December 28, 2015, 10:29 am

        it would take a few million bubbas modifying mosins to make the stock ones rare enough to be worth more than than $150. shut up and let ’em go, your gun might be worth something in a couple hundred years

        • Robert Young December 28, 2015, 5:20 pm

          You know what the most valuable rifle is? It’s the one you have in your hands and have ammo for when you NEED it! And, besides simplicity, a lot of the surplus ammo is still steel core……might be handy in the near future.

      • Paul December 28, 2015, 11:23 am

        I had to learn to just let the Bubbas be…I just shake my head and move on. I try to remember that when they proclaim “this thang ain’t got no value…” , that what they are referring to is the end result, after they have raped the living shit out of it. Lol. Of course then they will justify it by sayin. “It’s MY rifle” . Unfortunately, they are right about that!
        Also keep in mind, for every “worthless” M91 they destroy, yours just gets more valuable.
        Mosins used to go for about $59-$79… And the author here admits they are in the $200-$350(?) range now. He kind of disproves his claim that they have no value. Mil-surp guns generally outpace inflation, so claiming any mil-surp is worthless is a pretty ignorant statement.
        Have a good one.

    • Willie March 9, 2015, 11:29 am

      The conversion looks nice. (A sling is still needed.) This is a hobby-type project that provided a source of pride and accomplishment for the author. It is also a useful express rifle that made very good use of the Nagant base rifle. It may have cost as much in the end as one of the current plastic deer rifles but this Mosin has become an heirloom. I doubt many of the economical centerfire rifles out there will become treasures for the future.

    • James Hancock March 9, 2015, 12:59 pm

      Mosin-Nagant was once an incredible rugged field-piece.
      As the AK-47.
      Please don’t over-look barrel replacement.
      Most surplus weapon are well worn as a requirement to qualify or to be classified by the Country of origin.
      Cheap is not the same as inexpensive. Upgrades are as necessary as my outdated ’67 Firebird.
      Accuracy requirements of an owner is the key to cost effectiveness.

    • Nick Genovese March 9, 2015, 3:41 pm

      Mr. Helinski is incorrect regarding a manual safety. By pulling back on the bolt then rotating it to the left it will lock into a very positive safety.

    • Frank March 10, 2015, 3:59 pm

      What you failed to mention is that there is a Bent bolt kit available as well as a synthetic, black, Monte-Carlo style stock available on line from e-bay. There is also a scope mounting kit avaiIable from e-bay. I had my bolt done through an on-line company via e-bay, and bought the forementioned stock. Both are excellent fits. I installed the scope mount easily. I am going to check out the Timney trigger. I know I could have bought a modern rifle cheaper, but the cost of ammo is one heck of a savings.

      • Samuel Phillips September 16, 2015, 5:44 pm

        I have never liked Monte Carlo stocks. Also I’m not from Monte Carlo. Lots of people must not share my opinion because
        M.C. stocks are still being sold. I’m glad the author gave us a view of a drop-in stock that is not a Monte Carlo stock.

    • rob March 10, 2015, 7:09 pm

      I have one that’s been sporterized. Very accurate.

    • john April 11, 2015, 4:08 pm

      I have been working (cutting and fine tuning) on fitting the Boyds Gunstock for 5 hrs now… Only to find the upper and lower pre-drilled holes in this walnut stock do not align…. What a wast of time and money…….

    • Brad December 20, 2015, 1:14 pm

      To The author: Might want to take another look at your guns, they DO have a manual safety. If you pull the big knurled round knob backwards and turn it to the left, the gun is now safe. Admittedly I have had mine for the better part of a decade and I just found out (today in fact) about this feature.

      • mike December 28, 2015, 9:48 am

        the safety on my 91/30 works just fine

    • Erik65 December 28, 2015, 8:47 am

      Why do you say there is no manual safety? It may be slow and clunky, but it does exist. When the rifle is cocked, you just push in on the cocking piece and rotate it until it hooks over the rear of the receiver bridge. Take it off by simply reversing that movement.

    • Mike_SC December 28, 2015, 9:23 am

      I took an M38 carbine Mosin and placed it into a surplus Mosin full sized stock that I had painted camo and added a ruber butt cushion and made my express rifle a few years ago. It shoots the mil surp 147 grain ammo quite accurately at 100 yards. Id be happy to post a pic if I could.

      Nice write up, it’s good to see new life back into these old guns.

    • John Min December 28, 2015, 3:18 pm

      I love Mosin Nagant rifles. What a great deal they are. I must have been lucky because over the years I have owned 6 of them, the M38 being my favorite, and I still have 4 of them and all are really accurate. I put a scout scope on one of my M38’s and it will easily shoot MOA with Hornady 174 gr. BTHP over 45 grs of 4064. Gives 2500 fps and I believe 2500 ft/lbs of energy at the muzzle, which is stomping by any measure. My scout M38 (cheap chinese scope – one did break, this is my second scope) cost all in, around $240.00 (less than $90 for the rifle, about $50 for the scope, about the same for the mount, and a slip on recoil pad and a stock pouch for extra rounds). I gave my other M38 to my daughter. I really love my M44 too…shoots reduced loads great, 150 gr cast lead bullets over 16 grains of 2400 shoots dead on at 100 yds with the rear sight set to 500m. That load gives about 1500 fps…which is better still than most anything that won the West! The 91/30s I have are just too big and usually stay at home, even with one having the sweetest trigger. Your rifle came out great…a fun project for sure! Hope you enjoy it.

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