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Q:
I posted a picture of my mosin nagant 91/30(Izhevsk)1942. the reason i poste it is that you can see the rough rings on the picture. but also if you look were the light is in the form of a circle you can see there is a darker circle. this circle is not rough at all and is smooth. while the rest of the barell is rough. could either of these affect the accuracy? could they harm me in the way of blowing up or sending hot gases into my face? did they do this because of war time production? is it part of the milling process? the reason i ask is that my brother got one that is a 1937 (Izhevsk) that is smooth. is the reason they did this is because of them knowing you are going to be shooting more it disipates heat better? also you can see that there is a ding in the barrel if you look towards the bottom. could that affect accuracy or potetionaly harm me. another thing is when we were decosmolining it is that this pin for the trigger to stay in place kept falling out and my trigger even though fires it can go forward more with ought any resistance, my brothers doesnt(they are cocked when they are doing this other wise when decocked neither more forward.)could this be somethingg to worrie about? ( my trigger pull is less than his though :) but it is kinda annoying. also my brothers is perfectly round but mine is a little like rough on the side of the trigger kinda annoying but is this what to expect from one that has gone through war?) did they do this to increase accuracy? is that pin not in there right inside the stock like it could have shifted? the last thing is the hand rail ( peice of stock that covers the top of the barrel which is off the gun in the picture otherwise you wouldnt be able to see the barrel.) has to liitle bronze peices at the end is this something special? i ask only because my brother has just plain blued metal there im suprised because i would think it would be the other way around because of cut backs during wartime production . one last thing my brothers sights are really nice but i feel like mine are realy hard to pick up on. the post may to thick in the front or something. thanks.

from CoyoteHunterBlake on 01.02.13

Answers (10)

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from illinoisburt wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

Having handled a fair number of the 91/30's can answer most of your questions. You have been blessed to be able to buy a working piece of history. Lets start out by remembering you are in possession of a 70 year old battle rifle that was mass produced under not ideal conditions during a horrible conflict. Most generally sell for under $125 (sometimes a whole lot less!). They should not be compared to modern rifles in fit, finish, or accuracy. However they do fire a servicable hunting round, are faily accurate, and tend to be quite reliable.

The rings on the barrel are not designed for anything, the barrel simply was not finished. Those are the rough cut lathe marks from when the barrel was first turned. In 1942 when your rifle was built the russians had cut costs and just left off final machining since it had no effect on service of the gun.

Could it affect accuracy? Unrelated, though if you ever check out the old propaganda movies you will see barrels were straighten by hand pounding them over a mandrel with a large hammer with women checking them by eye, not with any kind of guage. The fact that most of these rifles get around 2-3 MOA is truly astounding.

Ding in the barrel is very likely not going to cause a catastrophic failure given it is not near the receiver.

Loose fitting trigger pin - normal. Different size/shape pin from other years - normal. They used whatever roll stock was on hand.

Trigger hanging free to move around when cocked - normal. The design doesn't have any type of trigger spring, just the sear. Some people add an aftermarket coil spring into the assembly to add tension so the pin stays in place and the trigger sets forward, makes it feel like a 2-stage but adds to the already heavy trigger pull.

Gouges on the barrel in front of the rear sight are very likely machining overrun from the dovetail that was cut for the rear sight. Removing the rear sight assembly would give full confirmation. The rear sight sits in the dovetail and is held in place by two pins. However you may find the sight base won't move forward even with the pins removed because the factories would solder them in place if the doevtails were sloppy to keep the sights from falling off on the battlefields. They did not have the luxury of rejecting a usable rifle for cosmetic reasons. Also note the original or refinished bluing covers the cuts uniformly and line runs straight from under the rear sight base.

Along that line the sights are going to vary a lot from year to year. The rears were stamped out of sheet stock, the front is nothing more than a piece of rod. There is a lot of variance, though you should find the witness marks are correct for windage. The front sight normally is short, printing shots about half a foot high at 100 yards with the rear at its corresponding setting.

Most all Mosin's you encounter were arsenal refinished sometime after WWII. Its not uncommon to find multiple proofs and secondary assembly date codes on the receiver ring, or have numbers lined out for that matter. The russians rebuilt the guns and replaced parts as needed before packing with cosmoline for storage in preparation for the next big war. Those bits of metal on the stock forearm are likely brazings to repair cracks or rusted areas. The bronze does not take bluing.

Before shooting it there are two areas that need to be checked. First is measuring the firng pin for length. It is nothing more than a long screw. Do not turn that slotted screw head in the rear of the rifle bolt away from the witness scribe. The rifle should have come with a couple accessories, one of which is the firing pin measuring and adjustment tool. Have someone who is familiar with the rifles check it to be sure the pin does not protrude too far or you could have a primer peirced and gas come right at your face.
The second area of concern is rare, but sometimes rifles are sold that were de-milled as souveniers. Take the barrel out the stock and check the left side. A de-milled gun would have a hole drilled in the receiver into the chamber. Cabelas accidentally sold a number of these de-milled rifles a couple years ago resulting in injuries when people loaded and fired them. The rifles were sometimes "fixed" by a steel plug welding into the hole, leaving a rough chamber and potential for unsafe operation in the future. If you find that - return immediately.

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from huntfishtrap wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

Looks to me like someone tried to grind grooves in the receiver to accept dovetail scope mounts, and did a crappy job of it. I don't think it'll affect the safety, but I would test it out as DSM suggested, just to be cautious. One thing I can assure you of, it wasn't made that way!

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from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

I guess now I am curious what Cabela's return policy is on these rifles. Otherwise, if you think it may not be safe I have an idea for you. As JM said, give it a thorough cleaning then get an old tire and wedge the butt inside with the barrel pointed in a safe direction. Tie a long cord on the trigger. Load the chamber only and yank the cord. See if it blows up. I would do this maybe 5-10 times. Then you will know if it is safe or not.

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from CoyoteHunterBlake wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

The guy at cabelas ( we tried to return the gun) was a big jerk and we found an even bigger gouge next to the sight. The guy didn't give a crap and he said that's how there made. WHAT!!!!!!! There supposed to have gouges in the barrel is he stupid? My dad said that we should have a gun smith look at it but what are they or a are we supposed to get that will make them let us get a new gun? My dd said that we should see a gunsmith before and see if they can help but if they don't do you think I should shoot it and see if it blows up or get $50 if I sell it?

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from CoyoteHunterBlake wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

The guy at cabelas ( we tried to return the gun) was a big jerk and we found an even bigger gouge next to the sight. The guy didn't give a crap and he said that's how there made. WHAT!!!!!!! There supposed to have gouges in the barrel is he stupid? My dad said that we should have a gun smith look at it but what are they or a are we supposed to get that will make them let us get a new gun? My dd said that we should see a gunsmith before and see if they can help but if they don't do you think I should shoot it and see if it blows up or get $50 if I sell it?

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from JM wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

Blake,
In the mean time do a really thorough job of cleaning the rifle. It could of collected all kinds of crud over the past 70 years.

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from JM wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

-If you can, take a picture of the rifling(shine a light into the receiver and take picture into the end of the barrel.

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from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

If you have shot it you should be able to tell us how well it shoots. You bought a rifle that is 60 years old and mass produced not for accuracy but to put in someone's hands and hope they could hit something. Don't expect a tack driver because you got what you paid for.

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from CoyoteHunterBlake wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

So other wise you think it's ok but yea later I will be posting more thanks!

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from JM wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

The only thing that scares me is what looks to be a dent on the barrel. If it was hit hard enough it could of bent the inside of the barrel(but I doubt it). Show us a few more pictures from different angles to make sure, but I am pretty sure that you will be able to shoot it.

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from huntfishtrap wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

Looks to me like someone tried to grind grooves in the receiver to accept dovetail scope mounts, and did a crappy job of it. I don't think it'll affect the safety, but I would test it out as DSM suggested, just to be cautious. One thing I can assure you of, it wasn't made that way!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

Blake,
In the mean time do a really thorough job of cleaning the rifle. It could of collected all kinds of crud over the past 70 years.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

I guess now I am curious what Cabela's return policy is on these rifles. Otherwise, if you think it may not be safe I have an idea for you. As JM said, give it a thorough cleaning then get an old tire and wedge the butt inside with the barrel pointed in a safe direction. Tie a long cord on the trigger. Load the chamber only and yank the cord. See if it blows up. I would do this maybe 5-10 times. Then you will know if it is safe or not.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from illinoisburt wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

Having handled a fair number of the 91/30's can answer most of your questions. You have been blessed to be able to buy a working piece of history. Lets start out by remembering you are in possession of a 70 year old battle rifle that was mass produced under not ideal conditions during a horrible conflict. Most generally sell for under $125 (sometimes a whole lot less!). They should not be compared to modern rifles in fit, finish, or accuracy. However they do fire a servicable hunting round, are faily accurate, and tend to be quite reliable.

The rings on the barrel are not designed for anything, the barrel simply was not finished. Those are the rough cut lathe marks from when the barrel was first turned. In 1942 when your rifle was built the russians had cut costs and just left off final machining since it had no effect on service of the gun.

Could it affect accuracy? Unrelated, though if you ever check out the old propaganda movies you will see barrels were straighten by hand pounding them over a mandrel with a large hammer with women checking them by eye, not with any kind of guage. The fact that most of these rifles get around 2-3 MOA is truly astounding.

Ding in the barrel is very likely not going to cause a catastrophic failure given it is not near the receiver.

Loose fitting trigger pin - normal. Different size/shape pin from other years - normal. They used whatever roll stock was on hand.

Trigger hanging free to move around when cocked - normal. The design doesn't have any type of trigger spring, just the sear. Some people add an aftermarket coil spring into the assembly to add tension so the pin stays in place and the trigger sets forward, makes it feel like a 2-stage but adds to the already heavy trigger pull.

Gouges on the barrel in front of the rear sight are very likely machining overrun from the dovetail that was cut for the rear sight. Removing the rear sight assembly would give full confirmation. The rear sight sits in the dovetail and is held in place by two pins. However you may find the sight base won't move forward even with the pins removed because the factories would solder them in place if the doevtails were sloppy to keep the sights from falling off on the battlefields. They did not have the luxury of rejecting a usable rifle for cosmetic reasons. Also note the original or refinished bluing covers the cuts uniformly and line runs straight from under the rear sight base.

Along that line the sights are going to vary a lot from year to year. The rears were stamped out of sheet stock, the front is nothing more than a piece of rod. There is a lot of variance, though you should find the witness marks are correct for windage. The front sight normally is short, printing shots about half a foot high at 100 yards with the rear at its corresponding setting.

Most all Mosin's you encounter were arsenal refinished sometime after WWII. Its not uncommon to find multiple proofs and secondary assembly date codes on the receiver ring, or have numbers lined out for that matter. The russians rebuilt the guns and replaced parts as needed before packing with cosmoline for storage in preparation for the next big war. Those bits of metal on the stock forearm are likely brazings to repair cracks or rusted areas. The bronze does not take bluing.

Before shooting it there are two areas that need to be checked. First is measuring the firng pin for length. It is nothing more than a long screw. Do not turn that slotted screw head in the rear of the rifle bolt away from the witness scribe. The rifle should have come with a couple accessories, one of which is the firing pin measuring and adjustment tool. Have someone who is familiar with the rifles check it to be sure the pin does not protrude too far or you could have a primer peirced and gas come right at your face.
The second area of concern is rare, but sometimes rifles are sold that were de-milled as souveniers. Take the barrel out the stock and check the left side. A de-milled gun would have a hole drilled in the receiver into the chamber. Cabelas accidentally sold a number of these de-milled rifles a couple years ago resulting in injuries when people loaded and fired them. The rifles were sometimes "fixed" by a steel plug welding into the hole, leaving a rough chamber and potential for unsafe operation in the future. If you find that - return immediately.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

The only thing that scares me is what looks to be a dent on the barrel. If it was hit hard enough it could of bent the inside of the barrel(but I doubt it). Show us a few more pictures from different angles to make sure, but I am pretty sure that you will be able to shoot it.

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from CoyoteHunterBlake wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

So other wise you think it's ok but yea later I will be posting more thanks!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

If you have shot it you should be able to tell us how well it shoots. You bought a rifle that is 60 years old and mass produced not for accuracy but to put in someone's hands and hope they could hit something. Don't expect a tack driver because you got what you paid for.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

-If you can, take a picture of the rifling(shine a light into the receiver and take picture into the end of the barrel.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from CoyoteHunterBlake wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

The guy at cabelas ( we tried to return the gun) was a big jerk and we found an even bigger gouge next to the sight. The guy didn't give a crap and he said that's how there made. WHAT!!!!!!! There supposed to have gouges in the barrel is he stupid? My dad said that we should have a gun smith look at it but what are they or a are we supposed to get that will make them let us get a new gun? My dd said that we should see a gunsmith before and see if they can help but if they don't do you think I should shoot it and see if it blows up or get $50 if I sell it?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from CoyoteHunterBlake wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

The guy at cabelas ( we tried to return the gun) was a big jerk and we found an even bigger gouge next to the sight. The guy didn't give a crap and he said that's how there made. WHAT!!!!!!! There supposed to have gouges in the barrel is he stupid? My dad said that we should have a gun smith look at it but what are they or a are we supposed to get that will make them let us get a new gun? My dd said that we should see a gunsmith before and see if they can help but if they don't do you think I should shoot it and see if it blows up or get $50 if I sell it?

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