One of the world's most popular bolt-action rifles is the Mosin Nagant. This old 19th century design renowned for its ability to take any punishment and keep on ticking had been brought into the 21st century through a number of recent upgrades and Firearms Talk looks at them.
The Russian/Chinese/US/Finnish made Mosin rifle was manufactured from 1891-1960, to fire the hard-hitting 7.62x54R ammunition from a five shot internal magazine using a bolt-action. While there are dozens of variants ranging from the original M91 model (some of which were made by well known US companies like Remington) with its 30-inch long barrel to WWII era M44 carbines and Chinese orange-wood clones, these guns are inexpensive and widely available, with more than 48-million in circulation.
With the glut of these guns in the marketplace, most of which were arsenal refinished in the 1940s by heavy-handed Soviet Army armorers, their collectability is low with the exception of a few really nice early/rare guns. This means that you can readily upgrade these old shooters without having a lot of heartburn about 'destroying a piece of history.'
ATI has for years marketed a series of stocks that are polymer in construction. These Monte Carlo-style stocks will fit (with a little work) M44, M91/30, and M38 style rifles. The good thing about these stocks is that you can usually find them for just $60 if you shop around. The bad thing is that some complain of a little wiggle in the installation that may require shims.
Archangel Development has come out with a pretty high-tech replacement stock that resembles some of the top shelf McMillian style offerings seen on advanced military precision rifles. The stock promises to be "Next generation, fully adjustable stock for most variations of the Mosin Nagant rifle." It's advertised as being a drop-in fit no matter if your Mosin Nagant is Russian, Czech, Finnish, Chinese, or any other variation. However, the PU Sniper will require some modification to attach original scope mount. Built entirely of lightweight, carbon fiber reinforced polymer. Impervious to weather, and will withstand all standard gun solvents and oils.
The stock is very thin compared to the standard wood variety, and gives the gun a great overall look. Bad news is that its $199, but includes a very interesting detachable magazine system....
The good people at Archangel have come up with a detachable ten-shot polymer body magazine that is held inside a newly designed mag well on their AA9130 stock system. The magazine is drop free according to the videos on the company's website and has a slight geometric curve to it to keep the single-stack mag from being too long.
(The Archangel stock and mag product)
Besides stocks and mags, there are also muzzle breaks that range from $10 NC Star models to all-steel US produced variants for upwards of $50. Then there are scope mounts, replacement bolt handles, bolt kits, and more.
With an investment of under $150 for a rifle, these inexpensive upgrades can bring your 1890s Russian bolt gun firmly up-to-date.