I got myself a Mosin Nagant M44 couple of weeks back. It is a 5 shot Russian bolt action rifle just like the one used by Vasily Zaitsev (Jude Law) in the movie “Enemy at the gates”. Actually that is a Mosin Nagant M 91/30 sniper which has bigger barrel and scope mounts etc. But the caliber is the same 7.62 x 54 R. And off course the action is the same. It was designed in 1891 by Captain Sergei Mosin and Leon Nagant. In all around 37 million Nagants were produced, which are still in service in some armies world over.
The rifle was in working condition. I polished the bore and chamber with polishing compound, oiled it well and took it to the range. It was fun shooting with this weapon. But man it kicks like a mule.
Not contended with the looks I decided to sporterize it and also spruce up its looks. First of all I took it apart. It is perhaps the simplest of rifles to take apart. There are countless tutorials online that guide you step by step on how to disassemble a Mosin Nagant and then put it back.
After that I got rid of the front hand guard top and bottom pieces and their rings. I then cut the stock to an appropriate size just a little short of the second ring. The stock was sanded, by using sandpaper from 150 grit to 1000 grit progressively until it was really smooth. I got rid of the dings in it by using a wet cloth and an iron. The steam restores the wood to its original form. Finally I sanded it once more for a super smooth finish. I painted the stock with spray paints using matte black and light grey. That gave it a camo or maybe a Zebra finish.
The metal parts (except the bolt) were sent to a gunsmith for sandblasting and then bluing with a matte finish. I also got rid of the dog ears used to hold the bayonet since I did not want to use the bayonet. The bolt and cocking piece was polished and it looks pretty good now.
Finally the rifle was put together. See the pics. You’ll love them, I bet.
The dog ears for fixing bayonet were cut off and the whole ring was grinded. You can’t see a trace of it now.
I will get a rubber recoil pad for it because the Mosin Nagant has a very bad recoil.
Ain’t she a looker? Well she’s a keeper too! I will now try to get ATI scope mounts and an ATI synthetic stock for this beauty. I think this is a good option for gun enthusiasts anywhere to sporterize their rifles and give them a jazzy look. Also there is so much of cheap military surplus ammo (7.62 x 54 R ammo) available here in Pakistan that it makes sense to go for such an option. Just make sure to check if the rifle bore and chamber is in good condition and that the action works. Presently its selling for Rs 25 to 35 per round which is not a bad option at all.
Some very useful links: http://62x54r.net/