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Old 12-18-2008, 07:25   #1
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Russian M44 accuracy

Gander Mountain has a couple of these on sale for $150, and one of them seems to be in pretty good shape as far as bolt lock up is concerned. What kind of accuracy are you M44 shooters getting out of them? I only ask because I might want to enter into a vintage rifle competition with my local gun club, and if the M44 is insufficient, I might spring for an M48 Yugo.
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Old 12-18-2008, 08:45   #2
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Accuracy on any untested Russian Mosin Nagant is going to be a crapshoot. Can you check the bore condition with a borelight? That can give you a good indication of how it may shoot. Factors such as type of ammunition, and whether the bayonet is extended or not, are also important, but these can at least be controlled. Unfortunately AIM is sold out of the Polish LB they had, which is what I would have suggested off the bat for ammo, but if you do end up getting the M44, there will almost certainly be plenty of surplus and new ammo available for years to come.
It's actually better, when possible, to start off with a small amount of any given ammo to test how well it works before buying a whole tin, but that isn't always feasible with surplus.

Also consider the M91/30, which is longer and doesn't have the attached bayonet. Recoil is more manageable on those if that matters, and there are plenty around to choose from.

I don't know about the M48 other than that people seem to like them!

Last edited by freesw; 12-18-2008 at 08:47.
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Old 12-18-2008, 08:47   #3
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Originally Posted by freesw View Post
Accuracy on any untested Russian Mosin Nagant is going to be a crapshoot. Can you check the bore condition with a borelight? That can give you a good indication of how it may shoot. Factors such as which type of ammunition, and whether the bayonet is extended or not, are also important, but these can at least be controlled. Unfortunately AIM is sold out of the Polish LB they had, which is what I would have suggested off the bat for ammo, but if you do end up getting the M44, there will almost certainly be plenty of surplus and new ammo available for years to come.
It's actually better, when possible, to start off with a small amount of any given ammo to how well it works before buying a whole tin, but that isn't always feasible with surplus.

Also consider the M91/30, which is longer and doesn't have the attached bayonet. Recoil is more manageable on those if that matters, and there are plenty around to choose from.

I don't know about the M48 other than that people seem to like them!
I've actually got some experience with the M48. I've got a friend who has one that's in basically brand new condition. A fine shooter too. But I don't (yet) have a reloading press to whip up my own loads for it. I know that 8mm milsurp ammo can be had, but most of it is of the corrosive variety.
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Old 12-18-2008, 08:51   #4
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Oh well, all surplus 7.62x54r is going to be corrosive also.

Not much reason to reload it at current prices, though sooner or later that will change. Then of course one will probably want boxer brass, rather than the Berdan primer surplus cases.
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Old 12-28-2008, 23:12   #5
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freesw:
Just curious. Is there a way to find out whether there will be lots of surplus MN ammo for a few years, or do you know somebody who is in the wholesale (surplus) import business?

Last edited by Ignition Override; 11-03-2009 at 12:08.
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Old 12-30-2008, 10:48   #6
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I don't have any first-hand knowledge of the wholesale surplus market at all.

That said, my best guess is that surplus 7.62x54r will be around for at least a couple of more years, at gradually increasing prices. Surplus 7.62x54r has been imported in large quantities from Poland, Bulgaria, Hungary, Yugoslavia, and probably Ukraine, in addition to from Russia, so even if ammo imports are cut off from Russia, there will still be friendly countries to import it from, as long as stocks hold out. Of course there's always the possibility of an across-the-board import ban, but that seems very unlikely, especially for a caliber like 7.62x54r. Things would have to go terribly awry for that to occur. All IMO of course.

Can't help but notice, though, that some of the vendors are out of some of the better types, but this could just be due to the recent buying frenzy. Not a bad idea to get a case or two of some good quality light ball (unless you thrive on recoil, in which case '50s Bulgarian HB or the Yugo HB available from AIM is just fine) of recent manufacture ('70s or later in this context, for the LB) as soon as funds permit. Just in case.

Edit to add that of course it may be a good idea to buy just one can of any type first, to check for accuracy and function in your particular rifle(s).

Last edited by freesw; 12-31-2008 at 11:40.
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Old 01-01-2009, 18:27   #7
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Ok, thanks.
As long as no factors combine in a unique way (esp. political stupidity), maybe price increases will only be gradual.

Last edited by Ignition Override; 01-26-2009 at 22:56.
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Old 01-11-2009, 11:03   #8
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Prices are indeed creeping up:
http://www.aimsurplus.com/acatalog/C...ight_Ball.html

762x54RCzech Czech 7.62x54R 147grn FMJ Light Ball
800rds/$150. Nearly 19cents per round.

On the plus side, this is supposed to be good, accurate stuff (and it's '80s production which means that, as corrosive ammo, it'll be good for decades yet), though I've not tried it.
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Old 01-26-2009, 22:58   #9
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freesw:
Do you forecast anything more than very gradual increases for the common Bulgarian in (old) grey or (newer) green oval cans?

If the 'panic bubble' ever bursts on cheap x39, it might be good to buy just a bit extra instead of x54R.
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Old 02-04-2009, 20:15   #10
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As to the accuracy, you are going to want to check the headspace, the leed into the rifling, the rifling for pitting and the muzzle for wear or damage. If all appears good, a good scrubbing with a copper removing cleaner and JB bore cleaner to get all the the metal from the bullets out of the rifling will help a lot. You need a tight fitting patch and need to keep scrubbing the bore until the patchs no longer comes out green. It has taken a couple of hours and many patches for me sometimes on badly fouled bores and it makes a world of difference. The JB is a very fine abrasive that will not hurt the bore in any way. Getting the muzzle crown touched up will also help. Most surplus rifles have damaged or worn crowns from improper cleaning or just getting banged around a lot. You are going to want to look at any surplus rifle you buy to check all of the above if good accuracy is a primary concern.

Good shooting, John K
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Old 02-05-2009, 12:18   #11
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^ Good points. I've read particularly good things about Yankee Engineering Headspace Gauges (supposed to be easier to use), though I got one of the more standard types at Brownells, IIRC, a while back.

Originally Posted by Ignition Override View Post
freesw:
Do you forecast anything more than very gradual increases for the common Bulgarian in (old) grey or (newer) green oval cans?
I just don't know, but:

Originally Posted by Ignition Override View Post
If the 'panic bubble' ever bursts on cheap x39, it might be good to buy just a bit extra instead of x54R.
I agree. Aside from the Yugo surplus, which is corrosive, there just isn't any other hard primer reasonably priced 7.62x39 manufactured outside of Russia widely available here in the states. That's not ideal from a "predictable continuity of supply" standpoint.
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Old 03-06-2009, 15:13   #12
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The Mosin/Nagant 91/30, M44, and Ammo

I have both the M-N 91/30 (paid $69.95 for it) and just bought the M44 for $125. The 91/30 was made in 1939 and the M44 was manufactured in 1954. The 91/30 bore was clean. It is very accurate at 100 yards. With iron sights from a table rest I have hit an 8" metal target at 200 yards (not every time, but I have hit it a few). Gotten close to the one at 250 yards. I haven't shot the M44 yet, although the gun is in excellent shape. The bore is nice and shiny, metal is outstanding, and the wood is excellent.

I have bought about 10 boxes (20 rounds to the box - $11.00 per box) of the 7.62X54R boxer type rounds. I bought 1,000 pulled .311 BT bullets for a very good price. So far I have loaded the cases twice and put about 300 rounds through the 91/30. I am thinking of buying some of the surplus, 440 rounds for $78.95 and trying it. The primers are corrosive, so I will mix 1/10 ammonia with water, spray a patch until it is damp, run it down the barrel when I finish shooting, load up and go home and then run a patch with oil down the barrel, then a clean one or two. That neutralizes the corrosiveness.

My grandsons, 13, 14, and 20 love shooting the 91/30. We'll see how well they enjoy shooting the shorter M44. It may kick a little more.
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Old 03-09-2009, 07:59   #13
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Russian M44 Accuracy

Report on M44:
Went Saturday to our local range with 13 year old grandson. Took the M44 with 75 rounds. Another member and 13 year old son joined us. All of us hit the 8" metal target at 100 yards multiple times. Another member hit it 8 times in a row with the M44. We went to the 200-500 yard range. With only iron sights, we could not see the 300-500 yard 8" metal targets well enough to shoot at them. I hit the 200 yard target on the first shot, missed the rest of the time, but was close. One adult hit the target also. Hit the 250 yard target on third try. Nothing wrong with the accuracy of the gun, just the shooter! No noticeable difference on the recoil between the M44 and the M91/30. My grandson complained a little as did the other 13 year old about the recoil on one shot they did, but mainly because they didn't have the rifle against their shoulder when shooting. We shot some factory, but mostly my reloads. Used Varget, medium load with .311 - 146g cannelure bullet with crimp.
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Old 03-27-2009, 13:50   #14
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Hawkeye:

Was the bayonet extended for the 100 and 200 yard 'events'?

Tomorrow, for the first time, my friend who still shoots with the Navy Rifle Team (although retired) will test one of my 44s and help determine how it shoots.
It came from 'Classicarms Inc' in Dec '07, and I've been waiting a long time for somebody to help me become a decent shooter while standing, with iron sights (am 53).
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Old 03-28-2009, 07:02   #15
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Ignition Override:

No, the bayonet was not extended. However, this past Saturday, two other grandsons and I went to the range. We set up two sticks at 50 yards with aluminum coke cans on top of each. I extended the bayonet. From a benchrest the 14 year old and I shot at the cans. We were moving each one, but not each time we shot. At 100 yards, from a benchrest, I was hitting my target each time from the benchrest, but it was a lot larger than a coke can. Of course I may have done the same thing with the bayonet not extended. The 14 year old likes the 91/30 better than the M44. I'm just the opposite. Due to it being shorter, it is easier to handle. At least for me. Both of them are heavy. I've been lucky at hitting the 8" metal target at 100 yards while standing, but my luck isn't consistent! I doubt if I would ever hit the 200 or 250 yard targets with iron sights by shooting while standing. Now THAT would have to be luck!
Here is a photo of my 14 year old grandson shooting the M44.
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Old 04-11-2009, 22:26   #16
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Question

hawkeye: Our previous meeting at MSSA was delayed until yesterday.

Mike, who is a bona fide sharpshooter, set one of my 44s on his small sandbags.
I've never seen shooting sandbags before (am still a novice who shoots alone at a river) and he took ten gradual shots with my cheap Bulgarian.
I knew that I was a lousy shot with both 44s on the wooden benchrest notch.

Mike only got about three hits within about 6" of the bullseye, and could not figure out where about three had even gone...from 50 yards with the 18" dark plastic peel 'em target, which leaves the bright green outlines. He has won several rifles as prizes at either Camp Perry, OH or elsewhere, and some at 200 or 600 yards with iron sights on AR-15s.

Is the Bulg. ammo the main culprit, if the rifle has a shiny bore with excellent metal on the outside too? There was no real pattern to the ten hits
(but not all hit the 18" plastic...anywhere-from 50 yards). The bayonet was extended as recommended by so many. My bores are always cleaned with Windex then dried etc within 30 min. of shooting.
What do you guys think?

Last edited by Ignition Override; 04-11-2009 at 22:30.
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Old 04-12-2009, 05:46   #17
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Ignition Override:

I don't know whether it was the ammo you used or not. I have been reloading from boxere type ammo that I have bought. The bullets are pulled and I buy them in lots of 500 for $40. They are 146 g. I use Varget powder. I did use some Russian ammo yesterday, but since it was given to me, I don't know who the manufacturer was, nor the year it was made. However, my oldest grandson, 20, was hiting an 8" metal target at 100 yards with it while standing. I hit it once out of 15 rounds, but the rest of the time I was hitting either to the left, right, or just below it. I'm 72 and my eye sight isn't what it used to be, so it has to be the rifle.
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Old 05-04-2009, 14:45   #18
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Just FYI

If you haven't already seen it, here's a good site for M/N lovers.
www.7.62x54r.net.





Your welcome.
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Old 05-05-2009, 07:31   #19
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Ignition Override:

Have you thought that maybe the crown of your rifle needs to be redone? Both of my M/N rifles, the 91/30 made in 1939 and the M44 are very accurate.
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Old 05-07-2009, 04:51   #20
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Thanks Hawkeye.

Will have somebody check it soon, but what does such gun smith work cost?
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Old 05-08-2009, 08:11   #21
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Russian M44 Accuracy

I am not sure. There is a fellow in our club who does it for me for around $25, but if you take it to a gunsmith, the cost may be higher.

Ray
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Old 05-24-2009, 14:47   #22
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M44

Hello,

I am still fairly new to the boards here, and was just reading up on this thread. I also have a M44 it is a 1945 year model. I built it up for Pig and Deer hunting. I have to say that with reloads it is very accurate. I have it set up with a scout scope mount from S&K. I have constiently have 200 yds within a 6 inch circle. usually more like 5 inches. This is from shooting from the bipod. One thig I would like to mention is that I agree with the above statement take your time in selecting the rifle you will buy. Also you should slug the barrel if you plan on doing any reloading for it. In case there is any interest I have included a pic of it.

Thanks
Ron
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Last edited by Mad-Medic; 05-24-2009 at 14:50. Reason: added information
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Old 05-25-2009, 11:07   #23
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Originally Posted by Mad-Medic View Post
Hello,

I am still fairly new to the boards here, and was just reading up on this thread. I also have a M44 it is a 1945 year model. I built it up for Pig and Deer hunting. I have to say that with reloads it is very accurate. I have it set up with a scout scope mount from S&K. I have constiently have 200 yds within a 6 inch circle. usually more like 5 inches. This is from shooting from the bipod. One thig I would like to mention is that I agree with the above statement take your time in selecting the rifle you will buy. Also you should slug the barrel if you plan on doing any reloading for it. In case there is any interest I have included a pic of it.

Thanks
Ron
Well that's just flat out neat. Are ya pretty happy with the S&K mount?
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Old 05-25-2009, 16:36   #24
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mount

Originally Posted by copen View Post
Well that's just flat out neat. Are ya pretty happy with the S&K mount?
Yes I love the mount. I think it is the best mount out there for the Mosin-Nagant. It holds the accuracy without any problems you can really tell the difference between the S&K and the cheaper versions out ther.

Thanks
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Old 05-25-2009, 17:39   #25
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Wanna share other info,stock,bipod etc.?
I've got a Finn 27 w/oct. rec. and been thinkin about doin something like that.
Just can't decide for sure if I wanna.
Your M/N ees loookin goot.
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