By E. J. HofFschmidt
Adopted in 1891 by the Imperial Russian Army, the Mosin-Nagant was Russia's first modern smokeless powder rifle. It was designed by Colonel Serge I. Mosin of the Imperial Russian Army in collaboration with Emile Nagant, famous Belgian arms designer and manufacturer. It might be pointed out that Mosin's name is also encountered in
arms literature as Mossin, Mouzin, Moisin, Mossine, etc., depending upon nationality of the writer. The term "3-line" often used in describing this rifle indicates the nominal caliber of .300 inch, based upon a Russian unit of measurement equal to .1 inch.
Mosin-Nagant rifles have been manufactured in Russia, Switzerland, France, and in the U. S. by Remington Arms Co. and New England Westinghouse.
The U. S.-made Mosin rifles were better finished than those of present-day Soviet manufacture. The Director of Civilian Marksmanship disposed of a quantity of these rifles to NRA mem bers after World War I.
Original Model 1891 rifles had octagon-shaped receivers whereas subsequent versions have round receivers. Numerous models exist, including both carbines and rifles. (Specimen in photo is Model 1891/30.) Telescope-sighted rifles were furnished for use by snipers.
This rifle is not too suitable for conversion to sporting type because of the split receiver bridge which complicates the mounting of receiver and scope sights. From a design standpoint, the bolt handle is too far forward and the safety mechanism is stiff and awkward to operate.
To opply safety catch, pull back cocking piece (1) far enough to allow it to be rotated as shown, over back edge of receiver
A To strip bolt (8), grasp as shown. Pull back cocking piece (1) far enough to disengage it from end of bolt. Rotate it as shown, allowing it to go forward. Now slide bolt head (6) and bolt connector and guide bar (5) off bolt body (2)
C Since firing pin (4) is screwed into cock-** ing piece (1), they sometimes bind. End of bolt connector and guide bar (5) can be used as a wrench to screw out firing pin (4). When reassembling bolt, be sure marks on firing pin and cocking piece line up
O To remove magazine floorplate (29) and ^ magazine follower (24), squeeze floorplate and follower together as shown. This will open hinge at end of floorplato and allow it to be pulled free of hinge pin riveted through magazine
/L To reassemble bolt, screw firing pin (4), V firing pin spring (3), bolt (2), and cocking piece (1) together. Line up open end of guide bar with lug on cocking piece, then rotate bolt head until it lines up as shown. Push it all together and rotate cocking piecc back to cocked position
The bolt release is simple in that it is only necessary to hold back on the trigger to remove the bolt from the receiver. Bolt takedown is simple and can be done without tools. Floorplate and magazine follower can be removed in an instant for cleaning. The magazine feed system is clever in that only one cartridge can enter the feedway at a time. A cartridge feed interrupter is actuated by the pressure of the bolt as it rides over the ejector. The interrupter separates the incoming round from other cartridges in the magazine, relieving it of the pressure of the rounds below, thus preventing rim over rim jams.-■■
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