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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Stopped at Cabela's after work Thursday to nose around. Saw a rack of about twenty Soviet Mosin Nagant rifles, arsenal refinished (by Soviet standards), tagged at $99.99.

A measly C-note for a gen-u-ine piece of history that killed Nazis? My only decision was if I would buy only one (I did. But I may grab a second next week if they're still there). I already own a Finn captured example, but that's a collector piece. I wanted a shooter.

The receivers were dated, so I looked at every damn one, rejecting the '43 and '44 dates until I reached the last one, with its magical "1940r". Ahhh, this one could have held the line at Moscow, or dare I dream, shot at the 6th Army at Stalingrad?

I waited for my background check to clear, then picked it up, boxed, at the counter. Got home, opened the box... what's this? My rifle, plus a leather ammo pouch, some tools, an oil bottle wrapped in grease paper and covered in cosmoline, a sling, and a freakin' pigsticker of a spike bayonet. I put that on, and the rifle wouldn't have looked out of place at Gettysburg. Well, it's an 1891 design, so it wasn't far off.

Not bad for a hundred bucks. And they're really under-rated rifles. If it was good enough for Vasily Zaitsev and Simo fu*kin' Hayha, it's good enough for me.
 

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The Toad
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Good find.

Bolt action rifles haven't changed much in 100 years. Almost everything is some form of Mauser action. No reason that a 41 Nagant wouldn't be as good a shooter as the latest offerings. As long as the action is strong, the barrel grooved properly and full floating it's as good as anything with the fiber/composite/parkerized/fancydan whatever. None of the fancy doodahs make a rifle shoot any better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Bolt action rifles haven't changed much in 100 years.
And automatics haven't changed much in 50. The two most popular automatic rifles were designed in 1947 and 1957. Amazing how small arms development has stalled. It's definitely a mature technology. The only major innovations have been in material (polymers), optics and accessorization (Picatinney rail). Otherwise it's as stagnant as aviation.
 

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Fook Yeah!

I know's where Ima Goin' tomorrie.....
 

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The Toad
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And automatics haven't changed much in 50. The two most popular automatic rifles were designed in 1947 and 1957. Amazing how small arms development has stalled. It's definitely a mature technology. The only major innovations have been in material (polymers), optics and accessorization (Picatinney rail). Otherwise it's as stagnant as aviation.
No new auto action is any better than the Garand rotating bolt or the AK-47 action. People will tell you the AR-15 action is as good or better, but that's all horsepucky. The AR15/M16/M4 action is a hunk of junk. The M4 had by far the worst jamming rate of the rifles the Army considered and the weakness of the 5.56mm is legendary. But the right pols get money for their districts so voila the US Army chooses the worst combat rifle of the 20th Century. Don't get me started on that Beretta POS... the only pistol that failed catastrophically several times under test.... but voila the right contracts and payola and the Army picks it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·

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The Toad
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For a couple hundred bucks you can get an RCBS press, dies, a scale some powder and primers and save a bundle on rifle calibre ammo and larger pistol calibers too. You can load .30-06 for 1/3 price and that includes using premium bullets like Nozler Partitions. 45ACP, .44mag, .357mag same same. A pound of powder will reload 1000 .38spec.... the preferred cartridge for practicing with a .357.

I've been reloading for years and I do easily twice the shooting I would do if I bought ammo commercially. Plus it gives something to do on those long winter days rather than vegging out.
 

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For a couple hundred bucks you can get an RCBS press, dies, a scale some powder and primers and save a bundle on rifle calibre ammo and larger pistol calibers too. You can load .30-06 for 1/3 price and that includes using premium bullets like Nozler Partitions. 45ACP, .44mag, .357mag same same. A pound of powder will reload 1000 .38spec.... the preferred cartridge for practicing with a .357.

I've been reloading for years and I do easily twice the shooting I would do if I bought ammo commercially. Plus it gives something to do on those long winter days rather than vegging out.
Do you fab your own razor wire too?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I've been reloading for years and I do easily twice the shooting I would do if I bought ammo commercially. Plus it gives something to do on those long winter days rather than vegging out.
The surplus stuff is so dirt cheap, reloading it doesn't really pay for my time. However, I'm gearing up for Cowboy Action Shooting next year, so I've set myself up for reloading .38 Special, .44 Russian and .32-20. Gonna go with factory ammo I've been scoring relatively cheap, then save the brass to reload with a black-powder substitute the year after.
 

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VERY disappointed in the local Cabela's - not only do they have exactly "none" (0) in stock, but they looked at me like I had a swastika branded on each of the horns growing from the top of my head when I asked about them.

One guy pointed at the "Military Surplus/Pre-Owned" rack that contained some ancient czech breech-loader ($699), a handful of craptastic AR-15's ($899 to $2699) and two tired-ass 8mm Mauser rifles ($499 for the battle rifle, and $599 for the "Trainer"): both of which had been "armory reworked" with the "battle rifle" that had plugs glued-into what I'm assuming was a bullet-scar, and another filling-in the notch for the bolt-handle in the stock - I can only surmise the rifle had been used SO MUCH, that it had worn-down and ganked-up the notch, and rather than tossing it, someone had sawn-out the "defects" and "fixed" it with wood that not-only did not have the same grain-pattern (and colour), but used a black glue, and did not even match the grain direction......

Meh.

Glad you managed a Good Find.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
VERY disappointed in the local Cabela's - not only do they have exactly "none" (0) in stock, but they looked at me like I had a swastika branded on each of the horns growing from the top of my head when I asked about them.

One guy pointed at the "Military Surplus/Pre-Owned" rack that contained some ancient czech breech-loader ($699), a handful of craptastic AR-15's ($899 to $2699) and two tired-ass 8mm Mauser rifles ($499 for the battle rifle, and $599 for the "Trainer"): both of which had been "armory reworked" with the "battle rifle" that had plugs glued-into what I'm assuming was a bullet-scar, and another filling-in the notch for the bolt-handle in the stock - I can only surmise the rifle had been used SO MUCH, that it had worn-down and ganked-up the notch, and rather than tossing it, someone had sawn-out the "defects" and "fixed" it with wood that not-only did not have the same grain-pattern (and colour), but used a black glue, and did not even match the grain direction......

Meh.

Glad you managed a Good Find.
Yikes. That sounds like what my local Cabelas is normally like. Luckily I also have the Kittery Trading Post only 45 minutes away - much better prices and selection.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I have seen these rifles and they are stellar. They are a little more tha $99.00 but still a bargain.

Fine Historical & Modern Firearms such as Mauser Rifles, P-08 Luger Pistols, P38 Autos, 1911 Autos and more by Mitchell's Mausers
Funny you should mention that - I just got my local Cabela's sale flyer, and on Thursday they'll have the Mauser 24/47's on sale for $249. I'll be taking an early, extended lunch.

Can't believe I don't own a '98 variant already. Hopefully that will be remedied before Thursday noon.
 
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