Item:
ON13085

Original Antique Finnish Captured Mosin-Nagant M/91 Infantry Rifle by Tula Arsenal serial 65729 - dated 1893

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. These are so very rare, and this is the earliest example that we have seen in quite some time. A real pre-1898 Antique Russian Mosin-Nagant M1891 Full Length Rifle, more officially referred to as the "Three Line Infantry Rifle, Model of 1891." This particular one was later refit in Finland to the Finnish M/91 Mosin-Nagant standard, and fitted with a new stock. It has lots of issue markings, as well as serial number 65729, which is on barrel and bolt. Interestingly, there are no Finnish "SA" Markings, though it is clearly a Finnish stock. Perhaps during the rush of Wartime, they did not have time to add them.

The Russian "Mosin-Nagant" bolt-action rifle is arguably the most-produced rifle in history, with around 37 million being produced in various versions in several different countries. This number easily surpasses the Lee-Enfield, Mauser GEW98 and Mauser K98K in number produced. The reasons for this are multiple, including both the size of Russia and later USSR, as well as the long service life of this design, which is still in use today in some locations.

The history of what is known as the "Mosin-Nagant" rifle begins in the late 19th century in Russia, following the Russo-Ottoman war. During the course of the war, it became apparent that Russian troops needed a modern bolt-action rifle to compete with the rest of the world, so they started evaluations in 1889 on what would become the general issue rifle for infantry troops. Three designs were submitted, and at the time in Russia bullet diameter was measured in "line"s, where one line was 1/10 of an inch. This is what gave rise to the official name of the rifle, the "3-line rifle, Model 1891", as it was in .30cal, or 7.62mm. The name "Mosin-Nagant" is in reality somewhat of a misnomer, as the design chosen was designed by Mosin, not Nagant. However due to legal issues with Nagant over certain design aspects of the rifle, his name was attached to the design as well, leading to the name used in most of the world, the "Mosin-Nagant Model 1891". Three other models would subsequently be put into service prior to WWI: the M1891 Dragoon, the M1891 Cossack, and the M1907 Carbine.;

When Finland achieved independence from Russia, over 190,000 Model 1891 infantry rifles were already stockpiled in the ex-Russian military depots within Finland. As a result, the rifle was adopted as the standard Finnish Army weapon, and surplus Mosin–Nagants were purchased from other European nations which had captured them during World War I. The official designation of these were "3-линии пехотная винтовка образца 1891–го года" which translates to "Three Line Infantry Rifle, Model of 1891". These rifles were then overhauled to meet Finnish Army standards and designated M/91.

This entailed replacing the stock with a new one, constructed from two pieces of wood with a glued finger joint in the middle. The new stock featured traditional sling swivels fitted into escutcheons, instead of the slots used on the Russian types. This example has both sling swivels still intact, with the correct escutcheons.

As with most, this example has the cross bolt to reinforce the stock against recoil, and the rear sight correctly goes up to 3200 arschini, an archaic measurement used by Russia through the first world war. Roughly equal to 71.12 cm, the ranges on the sides of the sight are often crossed out, and replaced with markings in hundreds of meters, however this rear sight has no additional markings added. The M/91 was the most widely issued Finnish rifle in both the Winter War and the Continuation War.

The barrel displays an Imperial Russian Double Headed Eagle over Cyrillic letters Л К, in addition to the manufacturer markings and date:

(Imperial Eagle)
Л К
ИМПЕРАТОРСКІЙ
ТУЛБСКІЙ
ОРУЖЕЙНБІЙ ЗАВОДЪ
1893г.

No 65729

These markings indicate original manufacture in 1893 at the "Imperial Tula Arms Factory", one of the most prominent in Russia. Reconstructed in the 19th century Tula Arms Factory became one of the most prominent arms factories in Europe. In 1879 the plant started production of the famous Berdan rifle with an improved bolt. Workshop was organized by a model where created their own models of small arms and hunting weapons. Increased production of various products: single- and double-barrel muzzle-loading shotguns, breech-loading center-fire rifles. Designer Sergei Ivanovich Mosin took part in devising damascus steel technology used in production of barrels. He also designed a bolt-action rifle which was put to testing along with a rifle developed by Émile Nagant. In 1891, as a result of complex tests Mosin's entry was chosen over the Belgian design and it was adopted by the Imperial Russian Army as the three-line rifle of 1891

The magazine housing is marked with the Bow and Arrow proof of Izhevsk Arsenal, Czarist markings which were discontinued following the Russian revolution and subsequent civil war. It was very common for rifles in service for a long time to have parts swapped out like this.

Condition of the rifle is very good, especially considering the age and amount of service it must have seen. The stock is in very good condition, though it does look to have been arsenal refinished at least once, and now has a lovely light brown color. The metalwork is in good shape, mostly a worn blued finish with a bright steel bolt. It still retains the original cleaning rod, which is in great shape, and still threads correctly into the stock retaining block.

The rifle cycles well, with a crisp dry fire. The bore shows clear lands and grooves with a partly bright finish, showing rounding on the grooves. There is also fouling and oxidation in the grooves. The 9mm or so of the barrel closest to the muzzle has been counterbored, thought to improve accuracy by removing worn lands at the muzzle.

A wonderful piece of Firearms and European History! Made in Russian in 1893, and then later used against them by Finland during the WWII Era. Ready do display!

Specifications-

Year of Manufacture: 1893
Caliber:  7.62×54mmR Russian
Cartridge Type: Centerfire Cartridge
Barrel Length: 31 1/2 Inches

Overall Length: 51 1/2 Inches
Action type: Bolt Action
Feed System: 5 Round Internal 

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