The M38 is a sweet little gun. I have two and both are accurate and fun to shoot. I like my 91/30 but may fave is the Finn M39. The '39s tend to exhibit accuracy that will give the Swede Mausers a run for their money. My Sako M39 will put most out-of-the-box sporting rifles to shame.
Just bought two Hungarian M-44's from Century. The first one has cleaned up real nice. The bore looks brand new on the thing. Have a 91/30 tucked back. Need to find a nice laminated stock m-38 to go with them. The Finn M39 looks nice, but the price tags is more than I can do right now.
Welcome to the fascinating world of old Russian (and others) rifles. I started with them back when the Wall fell, and they were literally dirt cheap. Picked up a couple of 1891s, then some refernce books, and discovered just how many types there were!! Nowadays, the prices are creeping up on many variants, but they are ALL dirt cheap compared to collecting other long-lived rifle systems. The ammo is also dirt cheap!!
They are pretty good with silver tip ball for one of the M44's and the M38, Got 2 gunsmith specials from SOG for 2 of the M44's. Waiting till I get my garage finished to play with them. Will most likely have to wait until December with Deer season coming up next month.
I am not sure which is more addicting, the guns themselves, or the history around them.
I am by no means one of those purist milsurp collectors. I don't see that Mosins have much in the way of sporter potential, though. You can't make it look pretty, but you can easily make it look ridiculous. It's kinda like sporterizing a turtle and ending up with an armadillo.
I had an Enfield that was seriously sporterized by Mad Dog Kevin McKlung. Selling it was one of those Life Regret sorta things.
I can't exactly get another one, because he only made two of them IIRC. But I could make one sorta like it. I just don't want to cut up an Enfield.
Yeah, a chopped Mosin wouldn't be pretty.
10 round mag, slick action... they have a lot of potential for a home built Scout. And when you contour out a lot of the wood, shortened and lightened agressively... add on a nice recoil pad, .303 is a real pussycat and makes it a nice package for slinging over your shoulder.
Admittedly, not as slick an action as an Enfield, but the Mosin M38 makes a dandy little scout. It's a very nicely balanced little gun and feels lighter than it is. The scope base replaces the rear sight leaf and cost $60. With a 1.5-4x handgun scope, it gets on target pretty quick.
The 7.62x54R isn't universally recognized as an appropriate DG round, but I wouldn't feel completely naked carrying this in grizzly country.
I bought my first 91/30 a couple of weeks ago and was pleasantly surprised at the quality of the bluing and wood stock. I haven't had time to play with it at the range but it looks pretty good. Had a heck of a time getting it in the safe. Had to make some adjustments to the shelf above the "normal" sized weapons so it would fit! :lol:
I didn't hear anyone mention the Chinese Type 56. I recently sold my Polish,new never fired, and Russian, 1947 non import marked, M44's. No one wanted the Chinese. It's not your typical Chinese in that it does not look like it was dragged the lenghth of the Great Wall.
I think I'll keep it.
I bought a 1931 Izhevsk 91/30 earlier this year and so far it's a lot of fun to shoot. Pretty hard on the shoulder but from what I 've heard it's not anywhere near as bad as an M44! It's in really good condition and once I got the cosmoline (or whatever strange Russki stuff that was) off, it looks really nice. All the numbers match and the stock is in excellent condition.
I'll be finding out fairly soon about the recoil as the M44 is the next one on my list. Big 5 Sporting Goods has a sale this week for $79.95 and we have 2 stores in town so I'll be spending time going thru boxes of rifles.
Here's my 1944-manufacture M44 from Izhevsk (forget Tula, Izzy is where it's at). Good investment for $75, it's listed as "very good" but the stock is in nearly flawless state, and the bore is bright. Happy owner right here. And I love the recoil...it reminds me I'm still alive