I am ready to finally use that license I got oh..5 MONTHS AGO and actually buy something. Question is, what. I have some ideas but I also have a hit list of things I want so I figured I would post my list here and let you all tell me what you think the best fit would be for what I want.
The choices (no real order so the # isn't the preferences or anything)
1. Yugo SKS
3. Mosin 1938
4. Mosin 91/30
5. Swiss K31
They are all around the same price so which one would be the best for the following?
1. Cheap ammo and available ammo
2. Enjoyment in shooting
Basicly, if you were me, which one of these 5 would you buy first and why? Thanks.
I chose the Yugo SKS as the first. It is very neat with the folding bayonet and grenade launcher.
Being semi-auto it is very fun to shoot. Ammo is cheap. Doesn't kick much at all. Easy to take apart and clean. Interesting design.
Then I got a Mosin 91/30 and a CZ52. I haven't shot them yet though.
Russian capture K98. Thats what i would get... and then another and another and another... You get the idea.
instead of the russian Mosin's i would get the Finnish M39 Mosin Nagant. i have two, and they will shoot as well as the k31 and Swede mauser. also 7.62x54R is real cheap right now, even new manufacture is very affordable. i also have a couple of k31's. they are sweet, but ammo is at a premium. go with the finn m39 you won't be disappointed
I chose an EG Makarov...it's a neat CCW.
Of the ones you listed I would suggest the SKS. The CZ52 is nice too.
If I were to suggest something I would add these;
Yugo M48 Mauser
Lee-Enfield (No1 Mk3 or No4 Mk1)
The K31 is a very very nice rifle but ammo for it is a bitch to find and never cheap. The Mosin-Nagants are good but for me they just don't hold as much interest. Of course you could pick up a M-N 44 dirt cheap and still get something else.
For max accuracy, ease of aquiring ammo and overall fun I would have to suggest considering a Finnish M39, you won't be dissatified.
I'd grab the SKS too. It's a good start and they are still underpriced. But remember, C&R isn't just about Milsurps. Lots and lots of great C&R guns out there now.
The Finnish M39 makes a great deal of sense, but I personally would get a K31 for its accuracy and craftsmanship now and pick up a SKS for cheap shooting later on.
My reasoning on the K31 is that they are so unnaturally cheap now, and prices are probably going to go through the roof before long. As desirable as SKS's are, there are tons of the Chinese ones out there -- which are as good as any in my opinion. If the whole import business was banned tomorrow, you'd still be able to get some kind of SKS and some kind of run-of-the-mill Mosin-Nagant at a relatively reasonable price for years to come. And since I reload, I just stocked up on 7.5mm Swiss brass. The Swiss military ammo is worth every penny in my opinion, but I don't intend to be dependent upon it.
I myself never really cared for the CZ52 grip, and the pistol has some safety issues too.
Again, I wouldn't blame you for going with the M39, especially if you shoot much and don't reload. Those are excellent rifles, and not likely to get any cheaper in the future either.
On that list I'e only bought 2 so far...a M38 Mosin & a Cz52.
IMO get the Yugo SKS first. Probably the most useful overall shooter. New 7.62x39 is dirt cheap. And if you reload the Yugo gas shut-off will save you chasing brass. Find a training rifle-grenade & some blanks & play extended range lawn darts......
The Cz52 is a real hoot to take to the range. I've had guys come over from several lanes down just to see what the hell was making all the racket. Stick to either the copperwashed ChiCom steelcased ammo if you can find it or new S&B. The surplus ammo on the 8rnd stripper clips is crap. The red boxed "New Generation" has a bad rep also.
The Mosin M38 carbine is neat but not the most pleasant to shoot. The long barreled M91/30 will be much easier on the shoulder. Ammo is cheap..not as cheap as 7.62x39 but still reasonable. The Finn M39 will be much nicer but more $$$$$
The Swiss K31 is probably the nicest one on your list but I have no personal exp on how they shoot. Ammo is $$$$$$$$ compared to the others but can be found. I think Igman (Portugal or Bosnia???? manufacture) loads it.
On my short list of C&R guns to get next:
Yugo M59/66 SKS
Mosin Nagant M91/30 & M44 to keep my M38 company.
another M1895 Nagant gas seal revolver
M95 Mannlicher <sp?> straight pull bolt action
Astra M400 pistol in 9x23Largo
Star Model B in 9x23Largo
I do have somewhat odd taste in old guns.
I think for cheap ammo & fun to shoot the nod would go to the SKS. 1,000 rounds of non-corrosive ammo for about $80 is hard to beat.
My Yugo came in great condition. I have yet to fire it though.
However, if I were you I would try to pull off a buying spree. Prices for most of your list are going great right now.
I just this week got a few of the Mosin Nagants:
1-Finish M39 (Sako)
They were all in really excellent condition & prices are reasonable.
I bought a Swiss K-31 a few months ago and paid about $40 more than they are selling for now.
Well, I went ahead and went with the SKS for the first one. I'll have it Friday so hopefully I'll be able to get out this weekend and try it out. Thanks to everyone for all the input. Now I have even more ideas for my next purchase.
Gotta go with the k31....awesome
I am a collector of C&R weapons. Here are some thoughts.
$100 or less
Russian 91/30 (fun Mosin and easier to shoot more than once than the shorter models)
Czech 98/22 (hell of a rifle that can be found in great shape
Finn M39 Mosin Nagant (strong and legendarily accurate)
Swiss K-31 (Rolex quality, atomic clock accuracy, and Timex price.
Yugo Model 98 (often found like new, all matching, standard 98 action)
French MAS 36 (ugly but very strong and quite accurate)
Yugo SKS (available in new condition)
SMLE #1 or LE #4 (nearly the best bolt rifle ever)
Indian 2A1 (the LE perfected in .308)
Sino SKS (get a milsurp one and not a commercial slap together)
Russian M91 Mosin (long on history and just plain long)
Russian SKS (the original; get one that hasn't been rearsenalled)
There are many others. Get some good books. Translation: don't bother with Ian Hogg. His main source of info is his hugely overblown Brit ego. For Collectors Only has a great selection of books on various milsurps.
A great milsurp site is www.mosin-nagant.net. A great site with great people. Gun nuts with a sense of history.
Above all, read and research. Pick an item and learn some stuff about it before you buy. Will save you much money and heartache.
If you can reload or are independently wealthy- get the K31. It is my favorite weapon. Period. The milsurp ammo is perfectly matched to the rifle and is more like high-quality match-grade stuff.
BTW- My K31 was my first C&R. (and my second)
Glad you went with the SKS. They are so cheap right now and the ammo is as well. I'll second some of the other suggestions fromabove based on affordability of ammo.
3. rc Kar98k
I like my K-31 just fine, I do not however enjoy the price I pay to shoot this fine firearm. Right now anything in 8mm or 7.62x54r is cheap and cheap to shoot.
Swedish Mauser, either the M96 or M38, Swiss K-31 or K-11, or a Finn M-39. There are also Finn capture 91-30s from the winter war, 1941, that the Finns captured from the Russians and reworked. The quality tends to be much better than the Russian 91-30s.
I think the yugo sks was a good choice.They are cheap and plentifull now,but in 4to5 years when the supply dries up that 109 shooter grade will probably be well over 200,just look at what happened with the 80 chinese and 125 dollar russian sks.
My first choice would be a German K98.
An SKS does make a good choice. The problem is that there are several good firearm deals that will become more expensive in the future.
In the not so distant past, .30 M1 carbines and '03s were cheap.
I also think the CMP has very good deals on Garands, which may be in my near future.
Buy what you can afford. The SKS, K-31, Yugo 98k, Finn M-39 are all around $100.00 for a shooter grade, some a little more. The Swedes are around $200.00 and climbing, as are the German 98ks.
None of these will get cheaper, and I doubt we will see as large of a selection of C&R firearms as we have now. The supply now is smaller than it was in the '80s.
I forgot one recommendation. Buy a Turk mauser. They are very cheap and if the stock and barrels are in bad shape it doesn't matter. The Turk Kale action is a large ring and can be made into a sporter in any caliber that will fit into the magazine. The 98 Mauser action is arguably the strongest, best action to build on. I have seen Turks go for under $75.00 that shoot as is.
Just remember to thouroughly clean any C&R you purchase, and have a gunsmith check headspace.
K31 all the way. Ammo isn't cheap but it's not like you're going to go out and shoot a few hundred rounds in an afternoon. Nagants, Mausers, and SKS's sure are neat but the K-31 will make them all feel like pieces of crap. Sweet trigger, great accuracy, easy on the shoulder, what more could you ask for?
USGI M1 Carbine.