Letter Re: Seeking Advice on Mosin Nagant Rifles

At the risk of pestering you, I was curious about your opinion of Mosin Nagant rifles. I have seen them advertised on J&G Sales for anywhere from $69 to $199, with folding bayonets. The advertised condition is “very good”. What do you think? It appears that there is pretty widespread availability of 7.62x54r ammo for this weapon as well. Thanks, – MAJ Kevin X., USAR

Here is brief response. (I get 60+ e-mails per day, so forgive my brevity): I do like the Finn M39 Mosin rifles –some of which are available on pre-1899 antique actions–but the little carbines (all legally modern, requiring paperwork) kick like a mule. The 7.62x54r cartridge is a bit more powerful than .30-06.
See: this article on early Mosin Nagant rifles and my Pre-1899 Antique Guns FAQ.

Pat Burns is a good Mosin dealer that usually has some Finnish M39s built on antique (1898 or earlier) receivers available.
(Scroll down to the second half of the yellow table of M39 listings for the pre-1899 antiques.)

Please note that most of the 7.62x54r ammo on the market is corrosively primed. Search for the Russian Silver Bear 7.62x54r ammo, which is non-corrosive. J&G Sales in Prescott, Arizona often stocks it.