As posted on another forum.
These are idiosyncrasies of the Russian built Mosin Nagant as seen through the eyes of a 64 year old novice with 55 years of shooting experience.
Baring the shooter, there are 4 basic reasons why the accuracy has been criticized extensively. 1) ammo: It would rot the bore in a matter of days if not properly maintained. The only other thing consistent about milsurp ammo is that it is not at all consistent. Different manufacturers of ammo have various degrees of consistency. 2) Bore: These guns were built by anyone that walked by the factory regardless of their ability. They were made to shoot in the general direction of POA. They were made with the speed and in the numbers that would rival Bic lighters. 3) Bedding: The stocks were made from differing types and qualities of wood and would fit the barrel and action loosely or tight, warped or straight. 4)Trigger; Some are OK at best some have the trigger pull of a caulking gun with the cap on the tube.
After all this being said, Most can be made into fine shooting rifles if these things are addressed. It may be as simple as putting felt in the barrel channel, polishing the trigger group mating surfaces, torqueing the action screws or maybe just thorough cleaning.
Many people canít understand the allure of The Mosin Nagant. Many people buy them because of their price. Many buy them for their historic contribution. Many buy them as an introduction to firearms. Unless you are a gun snob, once you own a Mosin all those reasons become apparent.
You canít buy a Mosin and expect it to be an accurate rife without addressing some of the basic things that effect the way it shoots. When I bought my first 91/30, I never heard of them. I didnít know what to look for. As it turned out it was counter bored, the bore looks like a sewer pipe, and had a crack in the laminated stock. I took it directly to the range. That was a very discerning experience. I was afraid I would never get the bolt opened again, sore hand, paper plate sized group at 25 yards I then knew I was ripped off for a $99 wall hanger, after extensive research and cleaning we (The Mosin and I with a new found respect) went back to the range. This time it was at least fun. It now is my most accurate 91/30. I have 5 others that have strong, shiny bores that admittedly havenít got the attention necessary to be all they can be. I have also neglected my other more modern rifles since Iíve been getting to know The Mosin Nagant. If you arenít a gun snob, get one, you wonít be sorry. As a matter of fact, get 4 or 5 and save yourself some trips to the gun shop and background checks!
"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling, which thinks nothing is worth war, is worse. A man who has nothing which he cares more about than his own personal safety is a miserable creature, and has no chance of being free unless he is made free and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself" John Stuart Mill