View Full Version : killin' snakes and varmints with a mosin nagant?

May 27, 2005, 01:10 AM

I recently got rid of my old .22 rifle because of a family dispute(my cousin wanted it back :D) so i have nothing to take care of these pesky critters with. i dont plan on buying another one and the only gun i got left is my blessed Mosin Nagant. this was my first gun and i love it like a brother, but i'm not sure if it is worth the trouble to use this rifle rather than a big shovel :confused:. My rifle is a 1943 war issue Mosin Nagant model 1891/30. the ammo in question is a few crates of old corrosive military surplus Czechoslovakian silver tips, 7.62x54r. the mosin will do the job just fine but it is LOUD, overly powerful, LOUD, and you have to clean the thing everytime you fire it. i have neighbors and i dont want them to hear me blowing the hell out of a snake. then again the rabbits are fast and the snakes are poisonous around here, so i dont think a shovel will do it. i have anything from squirrels to coyote... should i just go with my crossman pumpmaster pellet gun to dispatch the smaller animals?

May 27, 2005, 02:46 AM
Snakes? I'd use the shovel; it cheaper and quieter - and the shovel is easier to clean.

May 27, 2005, 06:42 AM
You might be surprised on how many of those "pesky animals" the snakes are taking care of....

Dave R
May 27, 2005, 12:39 PM
Its always easier to solve someone else's problems.

Shovel for snakes (but I agree they keep the mice and others down, I would only kill poisonous species that are too close to home.)

Crossman for squirrels and rabits.

Ask the neighbors before touching off the Moisin, but that would be your only choice for 'yotes.

May 27, 2005, 03:15 PM
Mosin sounds like overkill. id use it anyway if you got better ammo so you didnt have to clean it every time. is buying another gun an option? an sks would be cheap, still overkill but smaller than a mosin. or just get a .22 maybe a .223.

May 27, 2005, 04:31 PM
Those Mosins are LOUD, I agree they are very LOUD. But man they are FUN! Shoot the snakes with the Mosin, just pre-warn your neighbors that you will be occasionally shooting snakes and will be very careful not to aim in their direction and if they are OK people they should be cool about it.

May 27, 2005, 05:33 PM
looks like i partially knew the answer to my question before i asked. i just want an excuse to bring out the mosin :D. never get a reason to shoot it that much anymore...

the only critters i need to kill are the venomous water moccasins in and around the creek near my house, i got a family and dog you know. and the small animals that get in my gardens. would a flathead pellet really take out a rabbit?

sometimes i will get the occasional feral hog, coyote, or other medium sized animal running around my property or digging up my crop(god, would i just love putting a bullet in those damn hogs :)). Many people say you can't hunt with full metal jacket, but would a powerful 7.62x54r spitzer boat tail kill a hog? I heard you could make it a soft point by cutting the end off of a FMJ and exposing the lead, i also heard this is pretty dangerous. would it be safe to cut the pointed end off a spitzer?

May 27, 2005, 09:08 PM
I have shot rabbits with 22 long rifle and watched them run away into the brush where I couldn't find them, it punched holes through them but they didn't die right off. Switched to hollow points and pretty much they died quickly. Switched to CCI stingers and they all dropped on the spot, so a pellet gun isn't good for rabbits, it will probably kill them but it will kill them slowly and wastefully. However pellet guns work on snakes pretty well as long as the darned thing isn't crawling up your leg at the time and you need it instantly dead. I have killed copperheads and water moccasins with a pellet gun before, but they don't die right off and it does take a head shot.

You can clip the points off your bullets, but unless you do it with precision you could get some strange ballistic paths and I don't think it will cause much if any expansion. I bet though that you can buy some expanding hunting bullets, get an inertial bullet extractor, remove the in place bullet and seat the new hunting bullet using the same powder and casing and you will have a hunting round without much work. With a little research you should be able to find the bullets and tools on line without a big expenditure.

May 27, 2005, 09:41 PM
is it possible to just buy the ammo with hunting bullets in it? if he doesnt already reload he would need a press to seat the bullets wouldnt he? it probably would be cheaper to buy the ammo. or just save time and maybe money and buy a cheaper rifle like an sks as i said before.

May 27, 2005, 09:54 PM
If you ever do decide to get another gun, an old single-shot shotgun would be perfect for you. I have a 30 year old H&R 20 gauge that I use for snakes and various pest. If you look around, you could find one for about the price of your pellet gun.

If you stay with the Mosin Nagant, get expanding bullets if you can find them. I've shot a few objects with the FMJs in a Mosin Nagant only to discover that the hole was smaller than the bullet. :confused: Also, my old FMJs had a metal core that are for sure going to over penetrate and/or ricochet.

Be careful.

May 27, 2005, 09:55 PM
Locked N Cocked - You can buy tailor mades for that rifle. I used to have one and all I shot was fmj milsurp type stuff, but it was range shooting and not at animals. Lee makes a hand loader kit for around $25 that would have the tools to reseat a bullet. Inertial bullet pullers run around $20 or so. Russian 7.62x54R rifles commonly have a groove diameter of .312" and therefore use what .303 caliber bullets, while Finnish rifles have a groove diameter of .308" and take standard .30 caliber bullets. As I said, a little research and off you go without much cost.

BUT as you say, for no bother at all you can buy them off the shelf, for instance at Cheaper than dirt:

Product Description: 7.62x54R Centerfire Rifle Cartridges, 180-Grain Soft Point Bullet, Boxer Primer, 20 Rounds Per Box
Catalog Item #: AMM-917 Mfg Item #: SBA76207 $9.69 per box of 20. Not cheap per round, but certainly affordable for occasional hog shooting.

I have always been a DYI kind of guy so the first option appeals to me more, but the second options is probably the best approach, unless he is doing a LOT of shooting.

novus collectus
May 27, 2005, 10:21 PM
I used a 1000 ft/s pellet rifle on rabbits with great succes. Of course I have a small backyard and they were never more than 40 feet away. I have had more squirells run after a hit in or near the heart than I did with the rabbits.

If you reload for the Nagant, maybe you can load a low power round that would make less noise for the pests or, if they make them, load it with snake shot in one of those plastic cups that replaces bullets. (all speculative since I have never heard of anyone trying this).

May 27, 2005, 11:40 PM
at the moment i dont plan on getting another rifle. I used to have a dozen or so of them back in the day, but they are no longer with me... i gave most of them to an uncle in texas when he came for a visit because i was moving, i'll be sure to get them back next time he comes(he knows it too... he aint coming back :D).

I understand you need expanding bullets for hunting, but it would be a crying shame to buy even more ammo when i have over 2500 rounds of military surplus for the mosin. i dont reload, so maybe there is another way to safely make these bullets expand? there is no use in spending $200 for an sks and ak ammo when 7.62x54r is very similar yet MUCH more powerful. hell, i paid $60 for the mosin, why would i want to spend more for an sks? butch, how do i precisely cut the ends off my bullets? could i just drill a hole in them with a dremel and make a ghetto hollow point:)?

what would happen to a boar if you were to shoot it in the heart with a 150 grain FMJ traveling at almost 3000 fps? isn't there some sort of shock on the internal organs? what about a rabbit or coyote? i know its overkill but would it ruin the meat?

May 28, 2005, 10:10 AM
i dont know about making a hollow point but an FMJ will kill em as dead as a hollow point if you shoot in the right spot. there was a thread on this a couple weeks ago. i suggest reading it, very informitive. if you shoot a rabit with a 7.62 i dont know how much will be left with an FMJ or a HP. Generally FMJ's do less meat damage.

May 31, 2005, 10:45 AM
Confession time: When I first read this thread's title it was very late at night and I was quite tired. In my sleepy state it looked to me as though Sum1_Special was trying to phonetically write out the way a Southerner might pronounce the phrase, and I wondered: How in the world do you kill snakes and varmints with a moistening agent?

I was too exhausted to open the post at that time, but made a mental note to check it later to satisfy my curiosity about this previously unheard of method of doing away with these pesky critters.

It was somewhat disappointing to learn that a moistening agent was not involved, still I was pleased to be able to add to my firearms knowledge as a result of the information the posts contained.

The moral of this story: Get plenty of sleep, and read TFL carefully!

Good luck, and good shooting!

Tony S45
May 31, 2005, 01:09 PM
Nope. Not going to use a pellet gun on a snake. If I get nervous and miss that's OK but if I merely wound it, then the thing gets really pesky.

Here in my part of Virginia we have copperheads and rattlers (plus of course numerous non-poisonous varieties). Since I'd prefer to carry a 3" revolver rather than a shovel, I bought a box of .38 Special Snake Shot for those occasions; however, since the purchase I haven't seen a single snake.

May 31, 2005, 01:39 PM
To cut them off with precision first make yourself a jig to hold the bullets and create a place to cut each one at precisely the same spot, kind of like a small mitre box. After you cut them off you can drill down into them, again a jig and a drill press would be best so that you have uniformity (be very careful not to create heat with the drilling or cutting or you might have an explosion) - for uniformity of accuracy from one bullet to the next. It still might not expand though because you are dealing with a bullet designed not to expand and what you are doing isn't the same as re-designing the bullet. Hollow points and soft nose bullets are designed around that concept and have different styles of jacketing to help them expand.

A heart shot on a hog will definitely kill it, although it might run off a good ways first. I once saw a hog heart shot with a 270 soft nose bullet run flat out for over 300 yards. With a FMJ he might have gone even further. If you miss vitals a hog might even survive too.

I would expect that it would ruin small game for eating, but you never know until you try..... :)

3 weelin geezer
June 1, 2005, 12:31 AM
Isn't anyone worried about ricochets or pieces of flying rocks/debris back at the shooter? My bro shot ( I can't remember what) but it was solid steel and the little .22 bullet splattered all over and back in his face 20-30 ft. It hurt and he had a small piece stuck in his head. Swore never to do that again. Now a mosin with possibly one of those steel core bullets....Hmmm. Dunno about the good idea of shooting one so close. I practicly stepped on a diamondback the other day before it knew I was there. Can't see myself shooting one 1/2 km away though.

June 1, 2005, 05:27 AM
ah yes, the ricochet. i remember i used to shoot bottles with a bb gun when i was young. i used to set them on an old wooden table and shoot at them from a few yards away. well, i tried shooting the bottom so that it would make the bottle flip in the air like in the movies but i shot too low. i hit the wood and the bb came STRAIGHT back at me, hit the iron sight i was looking through, made a loud 'ping', bent the hell out of the sight and ricochet off that. if that rear sight hadn't of been there you can bet i would be wearing an eye patch right now with my right eye in a pickle jar :D. you have the right to be worried 3 weelin, be careful.

you dont want to end up looking like this: ;)