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Old February 6, 2012, 04:56 PM   #1
boostedtt91
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Russian 7.62 Nagant Revolver Buying Guide

I have been thinking of buying one of the Russian 7.62 Nagant Revolvers at a upcoming gun show in the area while they are only $100. I've never shot one or owned one. Since this is a quite old revolver, i was wondeing if there is anything special to look for when buying one? Is there any certain areas to check out to assure its a good save firing gun? Since they are always sold in crates with like 30-40 in the crate, i wanna have an idea what to look for when picking one out. Any information or someone with experience with one that could give me some help would be appriciated.

You can shoot something other than the 7.62 nagant ammo in these as well can't ya, i dont remember what it was, but remember reading you could use something else.
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Old February 6, 2012, 06:26 PM   #2
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If it's not rusty and the cylinder spins when you pull the trigger, that's about all the checkout they need, at least the cheap ones. "Heavy" is a generous description of the trigger pull.

As for ammo, 7.62x38R is getting easier to find, but not any cheaper. You're going to hear a lot of opinions about this, but I have shot plenty of 32 smith and wesson long out of mine. The cases bulge and rip sometimes, but that's it. People use 32 magnum too, but I don't see the advantage to it. It's no cheaper than the right stuff and almost as hard to find.
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Old February 6, 2012, 07:14 PM   #3
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what about the gas seal? Is there anyway to check the function of that? Doesn't the revolver move forward when cocking to seal the chamber to the barrel?
Don't these have a different way of loading than a conventional revolver? You have to unlatch something and pull out the front pin or am i thinking of taking it apart?
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Old February 6, 2012, 08:30 PM   #4
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I just bought one, I'll get some pictures of the cylinder action around the gas seal, and post them tomorrow sometime.

The cylinder moves forward when the hammer is cocked and then back after the hammer drops basically.

Just look for signs of excessive wear on the exterior, that the cylinder turns when the hammer is cocked, and that the cylinder slides up to for the gas seal.
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Old February 6, 2012, 08:31 PM   #5
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Ref the gas seal, the cylinder does slide forward to cut down (not eliminate) the gases escaping from the gap between the cylinder and barrel.

Weather if really makes a difference is up for grabs. It's not a real powerful round regardless.

What I can tell you about the Nagant is it's a heck of a lot of fun, well worth the $100 bucks.

Mine came with a holster, and some tools. The trigger pull isn't the best but not too bad in single action. Double action is rather stiff.

If you concentrate on the front sight it is a fairly accurate revolver.

In reality, if you count the many purges in Russia, under the Czar, Lenin, and Stalin, I would venture to bet the Nagant Revolver killed more people then any pistol or revolver in history.

It's a good companion for you Mosin. I wouldn't count on the price stay low for long as people start realizing how much fun the little revolver is.

Suckers so ugly its cute.

If you get it, and want to reload, get back with me and I'll give you the info I developed.
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Old February 6, 2012, 08:36 PM   #6
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I haven't shot mine in a while, but IIRC, they load more like a traditional single action revolver (i.e. the cylinder doesn't swing out for a mass ejection and reload). You are correct in that the cylinder moves forward to seal, but that is pretty easy to see when you cock the hammer (if they will let you do that at the show). There will be some with plastic stocks and others with wood ... that really is a personal preference, although I recall hearing somewhere that the wood was less common ... FWIW

The other thing is that you will see the date stamped on them, so if you have 40 to choose from, maybe you can get one from a year that means something to you?

They are fun and pretty easy to reload for if you want to go that route. They are definitely curios ... as the main reason to own one is that they are different and have some history.

Good luck!

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Old February 6, 2012, 10:26 PM   #7
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i plan on reloading unless its a huge PITA
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Old February 6, 2012, 10:27 PM   #8
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where all are the original serial numbers stamped at? I want to make sure the one i get has all matching numbers
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Old February 6, 2012, 10:55 PM   #9
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As for reloading, I use Starline 32-20 brass, Meister Hard Cast 100gr DEWC and Lee's dies with VihtaVuori N105 powder. A nice mild load of 7.2 grains of N105 with a COAL of 1.375" gives me ~800fps ... QuickLoad predicts that performance will happen with N105 at about 11,000 PSI.

Be safe and work those loads up yourself ... this isn't supposed to be a barn burner, so go easy! I'm sure that KraigWY will chime in with his recipes as well ... I'll be looking to see what I can learn from him. Beware that some batches of brass need to have the cases trimmed for them to clear the thin gap in the Nagant pistol ... IIRC, mine worked without trimming ... but I just checked my database and it was 2005 when I got and prepared that brass, so I could have forgotten something by now.

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Old February 7, 2012, 05:51 AM   #10
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The gas seal is part of the cocking check. If the gun fully cocks, the cylinder will mate up with the forcing cone. The cylinder is milled out for the forcing cone, it either fits or it doesn't. As far as serial numbers, the mainspring had one on it, but it looked like it was put there by some guy in a cave with a rock. I think the inside of the grip frame had one, I can't remember. I got rid of mine because it didn't work right. Thing would decock instead of shoot when I pulled the trigger.
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Old February 7, 2012, 12:27 PM   #11
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Every Nagant revolver I've seen looked absolutely pristine. The Bolsheviks were obsessed with producing tons of weaponry only to place them in storage, only to have them sold to us filthy capitalist pigs 70-80 years later.

The triggers are horrendous on these revolvers however.
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Old February 7, 2012, 12:30 PM   #12
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The gas seal aspect of the Nagant only really works if you have Nagant ammunition. Otherwise, it's just like every other revolver.
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Old February 8, 2012, 10:59 PM   #13
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Ok a little late and not the best pictures, but here's the gas seal action of a Nagant.





If it does that it's working.
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Old February 20, 2012, 10:25 PM   #14
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got my nagant revolver two days ago and absolutley love it! Well worth the money, except for i paid more for a couple boxes of ammo than i did the gun haha. The only issue im having is it shoots a couple inches higher than the point of aim. Is there any way to fix that or make it better?
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Old February 21, 2012, 02:40 AM   #15
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Quote:
Ref the gas seal, the cylinder does slide forward to cut down (not eliminate) the gases escaping from the gap between the cylinder and barrel.
How do you figure?????

The 7.62 Nagant round is longer than the cylinder. When the cylinder slides forward, the end of the case mouth is shoved into the forcing cone.

When the cartridge is detonated, the bullet, as it is propelled forward, expands the case mouth against the forcing cone, creating a complete gas seal.
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Old February 21, 2012, 02:42 AM   #16
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The only issue im having is it shoots a couple inches higher than the point of aim. Is there any way to fix that or make it better?
Yes. Aim lower, or shoot at a longer distance.
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Old February 21, 2012, 02:04 PM   #17
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I find the Nagant revolver a fine little plinker, as fun and nearly as cheap to shoot as a rimfire. I handload using the .32-20 cases in the Lee Nagant die set. It is very easy to load for, and with the low pressures, my 300 cases should last the rest of my shooting life.
This all presupposes one doesn't get anal about the gas sealing - the .32-20 case is far too short for it. I just load it so the bullet doesn't protrude from the cylinder face, like any other standard revolver load.
At approximately 750FPS, it's no powerhouse, but it's great fun with steel swinger targets (cast lead bullets only!) and death to any soda can within 30 yards.
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Old February 21, 2012, 03:57 PM   #18
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as fun and nearly as cheap to shoot as a rimfire
There's no way its as cheap as a rimfire haha
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Old February 22, 2012, 08:52 PM   #19
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As cheap as they are, get the best condition you can find, and be sure to get the accessories, which is usually holster, cleaning rod, jag, etc., that came with the revolver. Some show dealers like to sell that separately as 'extra'. Leather holsters are uncommon and worth buying the pistol to get the holster.

Look for good finish and markings, Izhevsk armory is a triangle with a 'I' in it's center, Tula armory is a Star. Earlier production may have CCCP, RFSR, or Czarist markings, and are sought after. WWII production years are common.

These are cheap enough you can pick up a dozen, in a year, for less than a grand, and fun to collect and shoot.
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Old February 22, 2012, 11:20 PM   #20
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Don't these have a different way of loading than a conventional revolver? You have to unlatch something and pull out the front pin or am i thinking of taking it apart?
That'e the ejection rod that releases with the pin, and swings over to the chamber that is aligned with the loading gate. It doesn't have a swing out cylinder like a modern DA revolver, but rather a loading gate like an old SA.
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Old November 29, 2012, 10:25 AM   #21
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Odds of getting a Nagant revolver with bright bore

Hi,

If a person buys an un-selected Nagant revolver from a place like J&G (or whomever), what are the odds of getting one with a bright bore?

I realize it is just speculation, since I highly doubt if there has been a statistical study made, but based on the experience of those who have bought them one might be able to make a good guess.

Thanks.
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Old November 29, 2012, 10:41 AM   #22
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Well, I'd say that given that they came from Russia, where guns were used hard and put away wet, repeatedly, all with corrosive ammo, I'd say the chances of you getting even a select one with a bright bore are pretty low.
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Old November 29, 2012, 04:48 PM   #23
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Well, I'd say that given that they came from Russia, where guns were used hard and put away wet, repeatedly, all with corrosive ammo, I'd say the chances of you getting even a select one with a bright bore are pretty low.
Considering 99% of the Nagant's on the market are Russian refurbs your chances of getting one with a bad bore are very low. I have yet to see a refurbished Mosin rifle or Nagant revolver come from the importer with a bad bore. Whats the point of sending a gun through the refurbishment process if its going to come out with a crappy barrel? The only Russian refurbs I've seen with bad barrels are ones that were abused by their new owners here in the US. (shooting corrosive and not cleaning properly).
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Old November 29, 2012, 07:15 PM   #24
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there is a world of difference in between a bright bore and a bad bore. A dark bore is not the same thing as a bad bore. Read my post again and you'll notice I never used the word bad.

I've yet to see a Nagant of any stripe with either a truly bright bore or a really trashed bore with ruhr exception of a Vietnam bringback.
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Old November 29, 2012, 08:56 PM   #25
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There were a flood of these released on the market recently. Even Gander Mountain was selling them for $99 on Black Friday. I checked some out, and they all appeared to be about the same condition and all came with original holsters and cleaning tools. The dates on the ones I saw ranged from 1940 to 1944.

I believe most of these are unused surplus, but I'm not sure.
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