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Although Lyudmila Mikhailovna Pavlichenko had over 300 confirmed kills the true number may have been double. Although the total number is in question, recent documents uncovered in Soviet archives have identified her first two kills as Private Moose and Private Squirrel
 

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Pavlichenko used a 91/30 but it was a sniper rifle model. They were not the same quality as the typical 91/30 - they were the best of all 91/30 rifles produced in terms of accuracy and usually also in fit and finish.

In any event, if you want to talk about quality of rifles based on what snipers could do with them, I call your Pavlichenko and her 91/30 PE and raise with Simo Häyhä and his Finnish M28-30. 505 confirmed kills in under 100 days...without a scope as he preferred iron sights.
 

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Not comparing apples to oranges or who's is bigger. If you think they made this highly precision Nagant and presented it to this unproven devushka, I might beg to differ.
 

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You may want to look up the history of the rifles used by the Soviets as well as dig a little deeper into the history of the "unproven devushka". When Pavlichenko first entered the Army they tried to direct her into nursing or a clerical position. She ended that idea by presenting her Voroshilov Sharpshooter badge and a marksman certificate, both of which she’d earned while a teenager as a member of the OSOAVIAKhIM, which was a society that trained non-military people as young as 14 years old in military tactics with the idea that they would enter into military service at some point. From there, she was assigned combat duty and she was subsequently given the rank of private and assigned to a subsection of the 25th Chapayev Rifle Division, the 54th “Stephan Razin” Rifles Regiment, in the Red Army. After demonstrating her marksmanship, she was put in the 2nd company sniper platoon.

So, yeah, they handed her a nicer MN with a scope on it damn quickly because she was not "unproven".
 

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This thread got off topic. But I always assumed most sniper rifles in that time period were just regular rifles with a scope thrown on them. I know the Finnish mosins have the accuracy. The Fins made big improvements on them.


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I've got google too. How about this? You're right. Feel better?

If you used Google, you would likely mistakenly conclude that she used an SVT40 during many of her days as a neophyte sniper. Long before Google, there were these things called "books" - they are often more accurate. Do I feel better preventing the dissemination of bull****? Actually, yeah - that usually makes me kinda happy. :)
 

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This thread got off topic. But I always assumed most sniper rifles in that time period were just regular rifles with a scope thrown on them. I know the Finnish mosins have the accuracy. The Fins made big improvements on them.


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No. The Soviets produced millions of Mosin-Nagants. The ones which were converted to sniper rifles were tested for accuracy before they bothered with putting scopes on them. The exact process is not exactly clear as many sources differ slightly on the details but most agree that many were tested before being sent to the field and the ones which displayed higher than average accuracy were diverted to the sniper rifle program until they had an excess number of rifles for trained snipers and a decent surplus as replacements. This is why true matching number Soviet M-N sniper rifles and ex-sniper rifles (scope removed, mounting holes often filled) have always been more expensive than other run-of-the-mill models.
 

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Let's get back to reality for a moment, folks. I did say "so-so" steel, bear in mind for it's day.

Which was about 80 YEARS AGO, compared to modern commercial hunting rifles, with modern

alloys and techniques. BUT, if YOU want to delude yourself that Soviet steel of that era is the

pinnacle of riflery, there's still about 37,000,000 Mosins on the market, buy em' up.

Put your money where your mouth is, don't tell me...



Not that they went nuts with the sniper units, they just took the best

out of the barrel, machined them for turned down bolts,

tapped and installed a 4x scope, and sent it out the door.

What the Russian Snipers did with these, by comparison to many,

minimally enhanced rifles, during WWII, is however, IMHO, nothing

short of spectacular, making them some of the most feared military

units in the world, at the time.
 

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They did have a target rich environment. That is not to diminish their achievements so much as to put the scale of WW2 in perspective. The first time I saw a map which included all major areas of combat which were occurring simultaneously during WW2, it made the idea of a world war really sink in - it was heavy combat almost everywhere on that side of the planet at some points with nothing less than massive forces on both sides taking heavy casualties. Pavlichenko was actually somewhat lucky to be sent home after being severely wounded as almost everyone else from the 25th ended up dead in a box about a month later.
 

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I tend to agree with you with regards to the steel used in most of the Mosins. It doesn't feel like cheap steel when you are drilling and tapping it or when trying to cut through it. The barrels on some of them may be in rough shape from the sheer number of rounds fired or from the steel cleaning rod that was included with each rifle but I do not believe the steel itself was so inferior as to where that causes the problem with the barrels - at least I haven't encountered any made from poor metal (relative to the standards of that time).

As far as the accuracy is concerned, neither the Finns nor the Russian Olympians were just lucky. Those rifles were not typical Mosins but ones which had more care and attention to detail put into their production and fitting. When it comes to the Finnish Sako models, that is readily apparent when you pick one of them up. If you pull one apart it is even more apparent as everything has been squared and trued up. The Finns did a hell of a job with those rifles.

That is not intended as a knock at the typical M91/30. The Soviets had to crank out a huge number of those quickly for the war. If they had slowed production on that scale enough to match the fit and finish on the Sako rifles, they likely would have been sending troops to the front line armed with pistols and knives a good part of the time.

Those rifles which were cranked out during the war time production runs are often extremely rough. I had one with a receiver that looked like a metal-eating beaver had chewed the outside of the receiver out of a block of steel. The fit and finish on the rest of it wasn't much better but it still shot well enough to hit a man sized target. However, it certainly wasn't on par with any M39 or Soviet MN sniper model.

Side note: Hitler very likely did not blow his brains out. The skull with the bullet hole which was claimed by the Soviets to have been Hitler's was pulled out of mothballs and a fragment of it was tested by forensic scientists. They determined to an almost 100% scientific certainty that the skull was from a female under the age of 40.
Good response. Thank You.

My point was that Russian or Soviet rifles, while obsolete by WWII, (as were the Springfield, Arisaka, and the various Mauser rifles). The disparaging remarks that are recycled around the net are just incorrect. Mosins were not junk when compared with the standards of the time. In the many years that I have been following the ignoble Mosin-Nagant, I have seen photos of exactly one receiver that failed catastrophically, and we don't know what "nuclear" hand-loads were loaded at the time of failure. To my knowledge, the Soviets had no steel quality issues that have been documented. I still shoot, with full-power military rounds, Russian rifles that are well in excess of 100 years old, and have fought through two world wars.

As far as Hitler....Regardless of the forensic evidence or lack thereof, there were enough reliable witnesses in the bunker to satisfy my curiosity. Whether he offed himself or someone else assisted, or whether by cyanide or lead, or whether or not the correct corpse was found, the same goal was attained, in that after the day in question, his likeness was not to be seen or heard from again. Had the Soviets been able to grab him, alive or dead, there would have been a glorious execution or display. I do not believe that, in his despair of total personal and national failure, Hitler would have risked capture by attempting to escape a surrounded Berlin. (Old Adolph remembered what happened to his bosom buddy Benito) As was fitting, he took the coward's way out by suicide and his body disappeared into the "Nacht Und Nebel" of history.


In Berlin, there were tens of thousands of unidentified corpses laying around in various states of disrepair. At the end of fighting, these bodies had to be dealt with rapidly to avoid the spread of disease. After being bombed, strafed, shelled, burned, and otherwise adulterated, Abby Sciuto, may not have been able to ID Schicklgruber's nasty body. It does not surprise me that his body was not found. Nor would it surprise me that the silent Soviets did actually recover the correct body, and for their own reasons, buried the affair. (no pun intended)

In any case, I think it is almost certain that Hitler died in the day in question. (just about six years too late)
 

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Thanks guys, I think you just accomplished in 10 minutes what took me at least a full semester in high school.
 

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Discussion Starter #34
Now that we are already off topic what do you guys shoot brass 7.62x54r or steel? I have only shot brass out of mine but I don't shoot my Mosin as much as I do my other firearms. I only shoot brass out of my Ar 15s and such but that's reasonable. Does the Mosin cycle and shoot steel casing fine ?
 

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Now that we are already off topic what do you guys shoot brass 7.62x54r or steel? I have only shot brass out of mine but I don't shoot my Mosin as much as I do my other firearms. I only shoot brass out of my Ar 15s and such but that's reasonable. Does the Mosin cycle and shoot steel casing fine ?
In my Mosins, I shoot steel cased surplus Soviet ammo almost exclusively. Mosins are used to it, they actually thrive on it. The only brass 7.62 x 54R rounds I shoot is in my SVT-40, because it is a pain to clean the gas system as well as you need to when you shoot corrosive ammo.
 

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I also feed my Mosin almost all steel cased. I got really interested in the Jeff Cooper scout concept and, several years ago, the Mosin was a cheap enough platform to experiment. I shortened the barrel to about 19" and put it in a polymer stock, added a scout scope and sling and shot the heck out of it. At one point I was able to wring about 1.75 MOA in 3 groups of 5 but shortly after I had an incident where several rifles fell out of my gun safe and it seems the scope bore the brunt of the shock, way off zero. Haven't taken the time to rezero since.
 

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This thread got off topic. But I always assumed most sniper rifles in that time period were just regular rifles with a scope thrown on them. I know the Finnish mosins have the accuracy. The Fins made big improvements on them.


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Almost.

As a part of production, all of the rifles were test fired for accuracy, (and setting the sights) The ones that showed promise were set aside for possible conversion. That is one reason you can find some rifles with the CH (sniper) marking that were never drilled and tapped for a scope. They were good enough, but just not needed. To the best of my limited knowledge, I do not believe that there was a separate production system for the rifles that were to be altered into snipers.

As you could imagine, when producing rifles as fast as possible to replace staggering losses, as the tooling wears the bore quality production degrades until it is necessary to replace the tooling. If you get one built on the right day, it can be a tack driver.

The Finns did do improvements. With a of a small nation, facing a huge neighbor, their soldiering philosophy was different from the Soviets. They built a professional army of marksmen rather than the mass steam-roller approach of the Soviets. The Finns, did however, capture many rifles and return them to service with only the [SA] property marking. I don't know if that when evaluated these rifles were found to meet their specifications, or if they were in such a hurry they didn't have time to modify the stock and trigger, or remark the sights before returning the capture to inventory.
 

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I don't think my post was a personal attack nor have I noticed a warning. If I get one I guess I can move elsewhere.
I'll check real quick to see. Just got back from range and was going to post some results but if I'm in a "time out" (Ha) I'll just go post them on other sites.
 
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