View Full Version : my first Frenchy

November 18, 2012, 08:17 PM
well I had to sell a can of 7.62x25 ammo for it but I got a MAS 36 out of the deal. it is the first one I've seen in person so I jumped on it. the guy was asking 150 but I was able to talk him down to 135 on it. the wood looks like birch and cosmetically is in pretty rough condition but the bore is pristine, I have never seen a shinier bore.

the butt stock has a serial number that matches the receiver but the bolt serial does not match. the only markings on the barrel that I see are the CAI etching. how'd I do?

Hope to have picks up some time tomorrow.

EDIT: amplifying information. floor plate also has a serial that does not match. serial is K 75XXX. any idea on year and month of manufacture? I've narrowed it down to anywhere between 44 and 45 so it's a late war production model, does that hurt or help value?

November 19, 2012, 09:13 AM
The French rifle section over at surplusrifle has a sticky with serial numbers and build dates. Buckthirtyfive was a good price. Look like this?


November 19, 2012, 11:16 AM
not even close to yours madcrate. the wood is a very light color but parts f it looks like it was dumped in a bin of used motor oil and it's heavily scratched and gauged.

Mike Irwin
November 19, 2012, 11:58 AM

Oh, wait, that's not very funny...

Next person who makes the tired, asinine, and idiotic "joke" about French rifles will be permanently banned.

Mike Irwin
November 19, 2012, 12:00 PM
Remember, these rifles have NO safety mechanism incorporated into the design.

November 19, 2012, 12:29 PM
I would like to see a photo of the rifle --- I do love the Cosmetically challenged

Romeo 33 Delta
November 19, 2012, 12:32 PM
Welcome to the world of unusual and under appreciated rifles. (From a guy who LOVES and shoots ... French rifles, Italian rifles and Ross rifles):eek:

November 19, 2012, 01:20 PM
wow Mike, I'm sorry I made a crappy joke... that's just my thing...sorry if it caused offense:o

alright here's what I have so far.

Mike Irwin
November 19, 2012, 01:30 PM
I didn't notice it in your post, tahunua001.

I was referring to another post that is now gone.

November 19, 2012, 01:58 PM
ahhh, ok.
well a little more information. there is also a serial on the underside of the foregrip that corresponds to the receiver as well which I didn't notice at the gun show...I'm starting to think that the lighting in there might not have been the best.

I took the rifle apart today and also found out that the bayonet is still intact...didn't even realize what that was however I am a bit curious as to what the rod jutting out the front of the forward stock band is for as I thought that was how you mounted the bayonet on them. I took some 400 grit sand paper and linseed to the wood and after 2 layers with buffing in between it is starting to look more like madcratebuilder's wood though it still has a LOT of "character" to it. will take pics once it's back together.

James K
November 19, 2012, 02:21 PM
The rod is for stacking arms. The U.S. and Britain used stacking swivels (like a sling swivel except open), but the Germans and French used stacking hooks like that one, or in the case of the K.98k, the cleaning rod.


November 19, 2012, 03:25 PM
interesting, thanks Jim. ok well 3 coats of linseed in I am probably going to call that as good as it's going to get, still the roughest looking rifle I've ever owned but hopefully it will be a good little shooter.

November 20, 2012, 03:53 AM
I found this on another forum, so I cannot take credit:

Fusil MAS 1936 (7.5x54mm) ... Serial number prefixes F, G, H, J, K, and L up to 45XX were all pre-war made. In 1945, the French restarted where they left off in June of 1940 ... L4600, the rest of the L series were manufactured in either 1945 or 1946. M, N, P, and Q were finished off by 1950. They then went to block letters: FG, FH, and FJ and so on until 1957.

What interests me is that your example looks to have been refurbished and reissued, as it has post-war parts, such as the front sight, magazine floor plate and sling swivel. One way to tell for sure what year is to take it apart and remove the wood - the years are usually stamped on the barrel, on or just after the breech. The wartime butt stock will also usually have a circular cartouche indicating the month and year of manufacture, though this often wears off with heavy use. You example looks to have seen rough times, but should still a fun shooter and great conversation piece. Have fun!

November 20, 2012, 07:56 PM
I have a Q series:

Mine was still in the mummy wrap from the arsenal refurb. Interesting thing about French refurbs - when the re-parkerize their rifles, they do not plug the barrels; they just parkerize the bores at the same time!

I also have a Santa Fe sporterized Mlle 36. I am thinking about converting it to 308. It shouldn't be hard. The barrel threads are the same as an SKS. I would need to weld up the extractor a little bit and devise some sort of safety.

November 21, 2012, 12:14 AM
beautiful specimen Phil, if only I was as lucky to find one in that shape, well maybe I'll learn to care for this beater so that when I do find a pretty one I'll be able to take care of it correctly. in the mean time I can't want to shoot mine, dies are on there way from midway and some PRVI is on it's way from ammotogo.com so hopefully I'll be shooting her by black friday.

November 21, 2012, 08:24 AM
Lack of mechanical safety. I have read that the French would carry the rifle with the bolt slightly open as a make do safety. Better than nothing but of little help if you fell with the rifle or dropped it.

I noticed my barrels bore was parked, well it was until I had a hundred rounds through it.

November 21, 2012, 12:47 PM
Graf's had brass and use .308 bullets and H4895 with .308 data and enjoy. Mine came from a sporting goods chain store so I won't say what it cost. I did meet a German guy who would turn down the heads on .280 brass and cast bullets to get MOA from his rifles.


While not as common as the SKS for trophy purposes we did have some real scroungy examples some people took home. As in most cases the higher your rank the better the trophy you got to keep.


November 21, 2012, 04:20 PM
dangit MJ1,

every time I start to feel proud of my collection you post another picture that makes my inferiority complex flare up:D

beautiful M36 my friend.

November 28, 2012, 01:20 AM
6.5x55 might be a better conversion. I don't know what the green phosphate coating on them is, but our Parkerizing should hold up so well. It is really tough to remove.

November 28, 2012, 11:08 AM
I don't think I would change to .308 because every conversion I have read about and the one I saw had problems. It's just to easy to load the 7.5 to make me grind on the rifle.




November 28, 2012, 12:41 PM
I agree with MJ1,
I don't have the willpower to google my day away looking for someone that can make a 6.5x55 barrel for an uncommon WWII era rifle and then try to hack my way through a conversion job that will more than likely come out bubba'd. I can however load for the 7.5 without too much difficulty. I have seen a lot of guys claim that they use 308 bullets and use 30-40 load data for their frenchies so keeping it in it's original condition is not a big problem for me.

December 7, 2012, 11:06 PM
alright, the test fire results are in.

it was a limited test of only 4 rounds of 139gr PPU ammo but it was quite telling.
1. it actually fires
2. ejection is not very strong but since I will be reloading all my ammo for it this is not necessarily a bad thing(makes sure I pocket all my brass)
3. though it is a relatively compact carbine, recoil is quite manageable and comparable to an enfield NO4
4. I need to see about lubing it better as the action was acting kindof sticky
5. guessing what holdover might be I was able to hit a 4x8" target at 70 yards 1 out of 3 times.
6. the sights aren't the greatest but I have seen much worse.

overall I would place it somewhere between a cheap mauser and a springfield as far as performance, operation and ergonomics.

after a nice lube job I'll take her out and put her on paper properly.

December 7, 2012, 11:16 PM
The French thought mechanical safeties gave a false sense of security and proper handling and leadership were more important. Windage is adjusted by using a peep with the proper offset. Over on Gunboards-http:www.gunboards.com there is a French firearms section with some VERY knowledgeable who are worth talking to.

December 7, 2012, 11:24 PM
I don't think it's an issue with windage. I was testing in my backyard with quite a bit of wind and running out of daylight so I wasn't really taking my time. as with most WWII era rifles it requires holding quite a bit low at 100 yards in order to hit the target which is not something that I am too gung-ho about alleviating. it's just something that I'll have to get practiced with.

December 8, 2012, 04:21 PM
I should have bought a box of 7.62X25 by now. It takes me way to much time to make it.


December 8, 2012, 10:40 PM
you must have quite some patience. I actually traded all of my 7.62x39 off for the 7.62x25 after I got rid of my AK47 because I could get single shot adapters for my enfield and mosin nagants to shoot x25. after about a hundred rounds I ran out of the patience and decided to just sell the tokarev.
haha I didn't even have the patience to shoot the stuff no less make it.

now looking at what I got in return I think that it was worth it in the end, could have probably made more selling the x39 at the gun show and buying the rifle but oh well, live and learn. not like I came out behind in that deal.