View Full Version : Anyone own a Mosin Nagant?

May 29, 2011, 10:03 PM
Hello everyone. I am pretty new to the world of firearms, just got my first one two weeks ago. Wanted to get something for home defense and ended up with a Sig Sauer SP2022 in .40 caliber and am extremely happy with it.

I had been looking at some surplus rifles recently and landed on a deal that almost seemed too good to be true. I had looked at Mosin Nagants before but found it here http://www.aimsurplus.com/product.aspx?groupid=256&name=Russian+1891%2f30+7.62x54R+Mosin+Nagant+Rifles for $70.00.

My question is, how are these rifles? Assuming I used the hand pick option for an extra 10 dollars and was able to get one in good condition, what should I expect? Are they accurate? Is it sufficient for hunting small to medium game? Why are these so cheap?

Thanks in advance :D

May 29, 2011, 10:23 PM
Most of those being sold were arsenal refinished so they should be in pretty good shape. I think you could pretty much hunt a lot of North American game with them. Will not be a macth rifle but the accuracy will be plenty good enough to hunt with.

May 29, 2011, 10:28 PM
They're sturdy old guns and at the moment are cheap (and fun) to shoot. They aren't terribly accurate or pleasant to look at, but then again, neither am I. I want one.

May 29, 2011, 10:31 PM
For the price, they're awesome guns. The ammo is cheap, and they're reasonably accurate. A whole lot of fun for $70 or $80. Go for it.

May 29, 2011, 10:36 PM
This has to be the most discussed rifle on this section of the Forum. I do not own one and have no plans for one. This is not to condemn the rifle, but surplus military rifles do not appeal to me. There are too many good hunting rifles with great accuracy on the used market for under 3 to 4 hundred dollars, and many with either scope or at least rings already mounted.

Past discussions seem to reflect folks who hate Mosins and those who love them. Most of the lovers like the cheap price and the cheap ammo. This seems to be what caught your eye.

There appears to be a huge surplus of these old rifles along with a huge supply of old corrosive ammo for them. I reload my own ammo; therefore cheap surplus ammo is not so attractive to me.

I also like a rifle with a scope, and the standard straight bolt Mosin seems to present mounting a scope with certain challenges. I notice some new Mosin owners discussing all the things and money they can spend on mounts, scopes, stocks and etc. I can see where this could total up to the cost of a good used hunting rifle.

I bet like most older surplus military rifles, the Mosin is heavy and has a long barrel.

May 29, 2011, 10:46 PM
The Mosin-Nagant is built like an agricultural implement. This is at once its greatest strength and its greatest weakness. :)

The Good:

Generally pretty accurate by vintage standards (2-4 MOA)
Fun to shoot
The commonplace M91/30 model has reasonably mild recoil by high-powered rifle standards and its sights are pretty good compared to many other vintage military rifles
The cartridge is plenty powerful enough to take any game animal in the Lower 48
Milsurp FMJ ammo is cheap and abundant
The rifle is simple, reliable, and incredibly tough
Looks menacing :)
Historical and cheap, a rare combination
Did I mention fun? :cool:

The Bad:

The triggers are generally heavy, creepy, and gritty, and it's not easy to improve them significantly without making the rifle unsafe to carry with a live round in the chamber
The safety absolutely sucks- it's possibly the worst military design ever :(
The commonplace M91/30 model is long, heavy, and clumsy in the field
The less common but handier carbine models have loads of muzzle blast using commercial or milsurp ammo, and prices are climbing due to lack of recent imports
Straight bolt handle makes it difficult to mount a scope in the traditional Western position atop the receiver
The ergonomics aren't very good compared to modern Western rifles; the stock has a short length of pull, loads of drop, a very small and unyielding steel buttplate (get a recoil pad!), and a fairly long reach between the trigger and bolt handle
Modern expanding hunting loads can be hard to come by, and the current glut of cheap milsurp FMJ won't last forever
You're generally stuck with 7.62x54R; there are very few sources for barrels and other parts to convert to alternate chamberings, unlike the Mauser 93/95/98 or Remington Model 700
Modern, inexpensive, American-made bolt rifles such as the Stevens Model 200 will outshoot one all day long using more commonly available ammo, and they have better triggers, safeties, and ergonomics

Bottom line: I love Mosin-Nagants, but I love them because they're cheap, historical, and fun to blast stuff with. They're not necessarily the best choice for going hunting on the cheap.

May 29, 2011, 10:47 PM
I enjoy mine.
I'm taking it to the range tomorrow for the first time.
I'll let you know how she shoots.
Most of them shoot 8 in. or so high, but it's an easy fix.
Just clean her up and enjoy.
She'll take a beating.
And as for home defense.... lol.
The intruders insides will be splattered on your wall. :P

May 30, 2011, 07:51 AM
i love both of mine. im currently converting mine to the monte carlo stock, bi pod an scope for the hi powered rifle shoots here.

chris in va
May 30, 2011, 09:49 AM
I had an M38 for a few years. After a few bags of ammo, I lost interest and it collected dust in my safe.

Crude, low tech, doubles as a club.

the rifleer
May 30, 2011, 10:43 AM
Go ahead and buy one, they are great shooters. Most will shoot 3MOA or close to it. Its not a target rifle, but you can make shots at 600+ yards if you do your part.

May 30, 2011, 12:22 PM
Are they accurate?

Yes, more then capable of shooting 3 inch groups, all the shooter needs to do is learn how to shoot them.

Is it sufficient for hunting small to medium game?

More then adiquate for any game in NA.

Why are these so cheap?

Because of the numbers, there are thousands upon thousands released on the market.

May 30, 2011, 12:50 PM
Cheap, fun blaster

May 30, 2011, 01:20 PM
I bought a 91/30, and I'll likely buy another when I can catch one on sale.

.300 Weatherby Mag
May 30, 2011, 05:28 PM
I have two... I an m91 manufactured by Remington in 1918 and I have a 91/30 made at the Tula Arsenal. The Remington groups just over an inch at 100 yards off a rest, I have never seen another mosin as accurate as my example, although I have seen some of the M39 Finns come close... Generally, 2-3 inches is what you expect assuming you have a decent bore and a good crown...

Nico Testosteros
May 30, 2011, 05:39 PM
I have a B barrel Finnish M39 built on a 1906 Tula receiver.

May 30, 2011, 06:37 PM
Just got back from the range. :D :D :D :D :D:

She kicks like a bear... and I only hit my target a couple times. haha.
But I came home without the guitar I left with. :)
I forgot my big targets at home, and I was shooting for a 6 in. from 100 yds.
Still shooting high.
Oh, and if you're shooting off a bench...
Make sure to have something under your elbow.... lol
Gahhhhh, she was a BLAST!!!!! (Pun intended.... alot.)

May 30, 2011, 07:01 PM
I see we think alike as I have a SP2022 in .40S&W, as well as a M44 Mosin.

For the money as others have said, they're great. It's a fairly unique shooting experiance. I however wouldn't buy one online. The shipping and FFL fee isn't worth it, considering you can go to a local gunshop, local classifieds, or gunshow and inspect the one you're buying. It may be $10 more for one in the shop but at least you have peice of mind that it's got a decent barrel etc. Just my opinion though ;)

One more thing of note though, ammo is pretty cheap however it has gone up a decent amount just in the past year or two. The $90 spam cams of 440 were usually running about $70-75 a year or so ago. I'd buy one while ammo is cheap and if you find you don't like it sell it. The one good thing about a 'low value' gun is they don't have much more value to lose!


May 30, 2011, 07:02 PM
At $70 asking price and ammo sold by the wheel barrow load for cheap, it would be easier to ask for the members of this forum who DOESNT own a Nagant.

May 30, 2011, 08:38 PM
I got mine about 3 months ago because my 14 year old son wanted me to get one - he just saw "Enemy at the Gates". So I did. Both him and I took about 3 hours to clean it together.

We shot it later on...my first shot - Bullseye at 50 yards - 1" bull. Yah - we like it...:D

May 30, 2011, 08:42 PM
I had been looking at some surplus rifles recently and landed on a deal that almost seemed too good to be true. I had looked at Mosin Nagants before but found it here http://www.aimsurplus.com/product.as...+Nagant+Rifles for $70.00.

It is good and it is true. I paid about $20 more for my 91/30 at a local department store and it still was a fantastic deal. These are not only fun rifles, they are historic artifacts. For such a low price, you not only get a rifle, you get the bayonet, a cleaning kit, two ammo pouches, and a metal oil/solvent bottle.

My question is, how are these rifles? Assuming I used the hand pick option for an extra 10 dollars and was able to get one in good condition, what should I expect? Are they accurate? Is it sufficient for hunting small to medium game? Why are these so cheap?

I bought mine a few weeks ago. I've had it out to the range twice now and absolutely love it. I will say that that the gun is heavy and long, particularly with the bayonet affixed. It takes some getting used to, especially if you are accustomed to shooting smaller caliber rifles. For me, the front iron sight is pretty hard to see under certain conditions. I've only put 40 rounds through it so far and my accuracy has been improving. I suspect that after I've had more time practicing with it, I would probably feel comfortable hunting dear with it. I wouldn't hunt small game with it.

May 30, 2011, 08:51 PM
I bought mine a few months ago and have had a great time improving it! I now have a proper sniper bolt, monte carlo stock from ATI, and the best improvement to it has to be the Timney trigger! That fixed both the creep of the trigger and the safety issue! Now it has a hair trigger that is extremely crisp and a thumb safety, the stock must be inlet for that, it improved the accuracy by inches! From 4-6 at 100 yards to touching holes at the same distance. Mosin-Nagants are perfect project guns or leave them stock for a good cheap day of fun!

June 5, 2011, 07:52 PM

I, probably like many others, do not have tons of money to spend on guns. I have a wife and 4 girls (8,6,3,and 1), and don't have a lot of spare cash at this point for my "hobby" (that is what the wife calls it). Well, cabela's was selling these things for 90 bucks on sale and I did not own a true rifle caliber (all i had was a marlin 1894 in .44 mag). I thought for 89 bucks what could I loose. Let me tell you, this thing is so much fun! It is in fact a very heavy gun but manageable from a bench or from a shooting stick. The Prvi Partizan ammo shoots well through mine but what really improved the accuracy was handloading. I slugged the bore and found that a .312 diameter bullet works really well. I also removed the rear ladder sight and exposed the 3/8" dovetail that it was attached to. I added an LER scope and now I am closer to 2" groups rather than 4 or 5 inch groups at 100 yards. The trigger does kind of suck but is workable once you get used to it. The timney trigger looks nice but I am not ready to drop 100 bucks on the gun at this point.

Go for it!!

Onward Allusion
June 6, 2011, 10:28 AM
Getting into this late, but I have one that is now in a synthetic stock and it lessens the weight quite a bit. The MN is a a tack driver at 50 yards with iron sights - shooting through the same hole in groups of 3. My eyes are not good using irons at 100 yards anymore, but I'm sure it can do sub MOA easily.

June 6, 2011, 10:51 AM
My eyes are not good using irons at 100 yards anymore, but I'm sure it can do sub MOA easily.


The front sight isn't any farther from your eye at 100 yards then it is at 50 yards. Just put the fuzzy target on the front sight, it works if you are shooting 50 yards or 1000 yards.

June 6, 2011, 11:02 AM
There appears to be a huge surplus of these old rifles along with a huge supply of old corrosive ammo for them. I reload my own ammo; therefore cheap surplus ammo is not so attractive to me.

I reload, and the huge supply of cheap surplus ammo is still very attractive to me.

You can get surplus ammo for ~18¢ a round. I can't load them for that price, even if the brass was free. It is hard to even find bullets for that price, unless you use undersized .308 ones.

June 6, 2011, 12:54 PM
Did you end up getting one from AIM. If so, what did you think. I bought a 1926 model. I like it a lot, though I have only taken it out one time. Thats the problem with having 2 time consuming hobbies, 4 kids, and not having land to shoot on.

Onward Allusion
June 6, 2011, 02:47 PM

My eyes are not good using irons at 100 yards anymore, but I'm sure it can do sub MOA easily.

The front sight isn't any farther from your eye at 100 yards then it is at 50 yards. Just put the fuzzy target on the front sight, it works if you are shooting 50 yards or 1000 yards.

LOL! If that were only the case! It's kind of hard to hit the same fuzzy black spot when it's a complete blur! What I would give for 20/20 again. :(

June 6, 2011, 05:02 PM
I have several, I am looking for original configuration M91s made in the USA, France, and Czechoslovakia. I'll stop collecting them then.

June 7, 2011, 07:32 PM
I have three basic arsenal refurbished 91/30's, and I love them all.

Definitely not a state of the art rifle, big, heavy, crude, primitive, and quirky, but dirt simple, rock solid reliable, fairly accurate, inexpensive, dripping with history, and loads of fun to shoot.

June 8, 2011, 01:15 AM
Great for the money!!!

Just depends how good you are with iron sights!!! :D

you could always do this! http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=417446

June 8, 2011, 01:52 AM
I have ~ 75 Mausers in various states of sporterizing.
I have ~ 10 Nagants in various states of sporterizing.

Here is a pic of an M39, a 91/3, and a 91/59.

June 8, 2011, 06:50 AM
I can imagine sporterizing a M91/30. You end up with a rifle worth about what you started with. However, sporterizing a M39 or a M91/59 gives you a rifle that is worth maybe half what you started with. I am curious why you would sporterize these rifles.

June 8, 2011, 10:18 AM
I got a Sako M39 for $90 at a gun show.
The 91/59 was free, I guess.
It is never going to get good groups with my old eyes, unless it has a scope.

I worked all those years designing defibrillators, cell towers, jet fighters, missiles, etc., don't I deserve a few years of wrecking old guns?

June 8, 2011, 11:17 AM
i got a MN for my first rifle about 6 months ago and i love it. being a southpaw the straight bolt on these rifles is relitively easy to use compared to bent bolts. mine is a 1938 m91/30 that i picked up for around $100 bucks and got to hand pick it out of a group of about 30 arsenal refurbished ones. ive put probably 200 rds through it no more than 40 a trip to the range otherwise my shoulder feels like its gunna fall off.if your looking for a good cheap and fun rifle theres nothing better, ill probably be picking up another one soon to go the sportsterized route with the stock and a red dot or scope on it.

June 8, 2011, 11:48 AM
In ten years you'll be kicking yourself when the price is $400 and they are hard to find.

I love mine. Shoots straight. Looks like a gun first made in 1891 should. A piece of history.

June 8, 2011, 12:42 PM
If anything it is a great rifle to learn "how to rifle". I got mine a few weeks ago and have been out a couple of times. Normally a pistol guy this rifle has almost converted me to rifles haha.

The Wolf
June 25, 2011, 02:45 AM
Nothing at all wrong with a surplus M91/30 excepting cleaning out the cosmoline! In seriousness, they shoot somewhere around 2-6" at 100yds, depending on condition, and can achieve just better than 1" if you modify them correctly. Of course, darn near $1,500 for upgrades* on a $100 rifle is more than most people will ever be willing to put out, especially when the final project is still less accurate than most $800 Remington M700s.

These things are utterly reliable, the only thing that can make one jam is defective ammo; by which I mean carry a broken shell extractor if you shoot surplus ammunition. They don't split too often, but the ammo is anywhere from 30 to 70 years old.

A note on surplus ammo; clean the gun (especially the bore) with an ammonia-based solvent such as Windex. This will neutralize the corrosive residue left in the gun. Otherwise, it will rust up!

I recommend cleaning excess cosmoline out of the hard-to-reach parts of the chamber by wiping out the gun after firing, and free-floating the barrel for better accuracy.

*The upgrades I'm talking about are a mount and POSP/PSO-1 (Dragunov or PSL-54) scope with gunsmith installation, bedding pillars for the receiver, a good bent bolt, and a Teludyne Straightjacket (which actually do work.)
$650 (PSO1)+ $200 (gunsmith at $50/hole drilled and tapped)+ $70 (good bent bolt)+ $10 (pillars)+ $550 (Straightjacket)= $1480 plus shipping on the scope and bolt handle or admission to a gun show. More if you buy a polymer stock, Mojo aperture sight, or match trigger. Add $60-$100 apiece for those upgrades.
All of that for .5 to 1.25 MOA at 100yds depending on you and the original condition of the rifle.

June 25, 2011, 11:20 AM
I have had several dozen of these rifles come through my shop in the last 2 years and I have to say without any hesitation, that the ones with perfect bores shoot quite well. I am getting old, and I can't shoot as well as I could when I had younger eyes, but I have fired several groups at 75 yards and 100 yards that have proven to me that some of these rifles shoot better then most folks think they can. I own one with an octagon receiver with a great bore, and it's giving me 1.5" CONSISTANTELY at 100 yds.

Most of them with frosty bores shoot about 3 to 3.5 inch groups at 100, and some will only do 5-6 inches, but they are no different than any rifle. No rifle will shoot well if the bore is rusted out.
The trigger pulls are strange to the western shooter. They can be cleaned up to be glassy smooth, but they don’t “break”. They only compress until the rifle fires. I’d compare them to a well tuned Glock or Springfield XD pistol. With a bit of dry-fire practice, they work just fine and any one can learn to use them.
The safeties are a bit odd. You pull back about ¼’ on the cocking piece and turn the piece 45 degrees counter-clockwise. It takes some getting used to. However, it’s not all that hard to learn to use them.

All in all, they are a super good buy. I know a few men that think of them as a basis for a nice sporter. Why do we feel it’s necessary to spend larger amounts of money on an action than $70 when we don’t have to?
If we were to spend $600 on gunsmithing in addition to 600 on an action, is that somehow money better spent than putting the same $600 on gunsmithing in addition to a $70 action?
Here is a picture to illustrate what I am talking about. I didn’t build this rifle, but I have done 2 very much like it.
Now, I believe this is a better 'all around rifle" then a 30-30 lever gun. The price is close to the same. It’s more powerful, and in many cases more accurate. It can be had with the correct length of pull that the customer wants. It can be had in price ranges that fit budgets. It can be scoped with no more effort then scoping a military mauser. If the customer wants it can be had with a Timney trigger which has a conventional safety on it, just like those made for Remington M-700s.
And it can be had pretty inexpensively. Cheaper then a new "budget rifle"? NO But not much more either, and I think some men (including myself) think such a rifle is classier then a plastic stocked "modern American Budget rifle"
I have nothing at all against the Savage, Mossburg, Weatherbys, TCs and so on. But that's why we have more then one color of shirt too.
My point is simply this:
The MN rifles are very much worth the price and they can even be worth the money it would take to make something really nice out of them, or just hunt with one as it came from Russia and you'll probably be a happy camper.