The M44 Mosin Nagant

I had the pleasure of firing a piece of history last weekend, the Mosin Nagant M44. I wanted to list a few facts about it, add a few thoughts, and show a video of my wife and I firing it.

The Facts


The Mosin Nagant is a bolt-action rifle that originated in the USSR and used as the primary weapon for their military, as well as that of many other nations over the last 100+ years. The M44 was a later variant, released full-scale in in 1944, although 50,000 examples produced in 1943 for service testing. It fires the 7.62x54r cartridge, similar to our 30-06.

It is a fantastic weapon, as far as history goes, and still one that packs a formidable punch. Being a military surplus item, they can still be found for under $200, and yes, they still fire safely.

It has been used in the following wars: Boxer Rebellion, Russo-Japanese War, World War I, Finnish Civil War, Russian Revolution(1917), Russian Civil War, Polish-Soviet War, Turkish War of Independence, Chinese Civil War, Spanish Civil War, Second Sino-Japanese War, Winter War, Continuation War, World War II, Great Patriotic War, First Indochina War, Korean War, Cuban Revolution, Yemeni Civil War, Vietnam War, Laotian Civil War, Cambodian Civil War, Cambodian–Vietnamese War, Thai–Laotian Border War, Afghan civil war, Soviet War in Afghanistan, Yugoslav Wars, First Chechen War, Second Chechen War, War in Afghanistan (2001–present), Iraq War, and others.

My thoughts:

I believe this is a solid line of rifles, capable of putting anything on this continent down. It’s proven itself time and again, and I feel that since there were millions and millions of them, we should all have one. And considering you can buy one for under $200, I’m starting to believe they are now on my “buy” list.

They have some inherent issues, the bolt setup prevents a scope without some modifications, it is does not have a detachable magazine, it is limited to 5 rounds, and its is heavy!

However, it can be “sporterized”, though many purists frown on converting a piece of history into a “Bubba gun”. Aftermarket stocks can be installed, the bolt modified to allow a scope, and it can then be brought into this century as a more-than-adequate hunting rifle.

Not that long ago, they could be had for under $70, sometimes as low as $50. I feel that these are a decent option for buying guns as an investment. If nothing else, you can use one to hunt deer.

As to the video, I shot first, with the wife watching me. She knows about recoil, so thought she braced herself. Only not enough.

See for yourself


If you listen closely, you can even hear our youngest daughter chuckling.

What’s that? Yes, I brought my 9 year old to the shooting range. And she had her turn shooting as well.

Education is the answer, not eradication. Ignorance breeds fear, and knowledge breeds understanding. We need to teach our kids that guns are merely tools to be respected, just like a hammer or a saw, and that guns don’t kill people anymore than spoons make people fat.

Oops, rambling again!

So if you are looking for an old beater gun you can count on, look at the Mosin Nagants, they are worth it!



  1. Nice article and video. I just purchased one of these recently. Haven’t had a chance to fire it just yet, due to recent back surgery, but I can’t wait to try it out! Looks like it’ll be a lot of fun!

    1. I have an Army buddy that specialized in long range reconnaissance (he hates the “S” word!). He wants to take out a Nagant to shoot against the Silver Spoon shooters (spending Daddy’s money) that bring $10,000 rifles to the range. Like everything in this world, how you use an item is almost always more important than the item itself…..but it sure helps if the item can perform. The Nagants do that.

      I cannot think of a more economical firearm that offers the same level of punch and performance at such a low price point. Of course, since they ARE roughly 100 years old, and military surplus, there are some really rough ones out there. But the numbers produced also provide a huge amount of parts to get a good working firearm, assuming that matching serial numbers is not what you are after.

      I’m all about functionality, not looks…these are some of my favorites rifles out there for that reason.


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