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Posted: 1/20/2006 2:16:25 PM EDT
Just got my first rifle a few days ago, a really nice 1937 Ishevsk 91/30. (had to sneak it in the house... heh heh). Barrel looked very nice to my admittedly inexperienced eye; very sharp, clean rifiling and shiny lands. SNs match, albeit electropenciled. No big deal to me. $90 with all the cleaning tools, pouches, and a bayonet! The oil bottle had all the cosmoline that should have been on the rifle. hinking.gif

Anyway, stripped it down (bolt and everything), carefully scrubbed it clean with 409, patched the barrel 95% clean (just got faint traces of light gray), oiled it really good with WD/40, and tried to test the action with an empty casing. Won't chamber. Nearly got it too stuck to move the bolt--eek.

Left the casing out, and tried the bolt. When the firing pin is cocked, I can open and close the bolt like silk. But if the bolt is closed and I uncock it (pull the trigger and ease the cocking knob/firing pin down), it's EXTREMELY stiff to open the bolt again! Seems like that will make chambering fresh rounds a pain when I finally take it out to shoot.

Any ideas what's wrong? I've shot my grandparent's rifles a bunch (including a 30.06 that fought in the Boer War! Losing side, too hock.gif), and shot lots in Boy Scouts, but this one is my first personal gun.
Link Posted: 1/20/2006 3:35:52 PM EDT
My 91/30 did/does that. You just have to be forceful.
Link Posted: 1/20/2006 3:42:04 PM EDT
Hmm. That wouldn't be a headspace or cosmo-in-chamber issue? There's forcefull, and then there's worrysomely-stuck. I had to brace the rifle and use both hands to open the bolt again. Seemed very wrong.
Link Posted: 1/20/2006 4:08:39 PM EDT
Pick up a 91/30 last weekend also. Bolt isn't as bad as yours, but with a round in it. Its really hard to close the bolt (turn it down once forword). No cosmoline in the chamber, but bolt doesn't match on mine, like yours. Wonder if it could be a headspace tho?
Link Posted: 1/20/2006 7:20:01 PM EDT
IIRC, the Mosin bolt cocks the firing pin as you rotate the bolt to vertical. IMO, WD40 is not the best lubricant. Maybe try an action lube (grease) on the bearing surfaces that reset the firing pin (by camming action). I polished these surfaces with Flitz and used a moly-based action lube and the force required to move the bolt was reduced noticeably.

Just my 2c,

X
Link Posted: 1/20/2006 8:50:49 PM EDT
I use Sinclair bolt grease on my 91/30 Mosin Nagant. Really slick stuff! But my bolt was never really difficult to open or close. If it gets hot it gets a little sticky, but it just takes a little bump on the bolt to open it up. Not bad for a rifle that was made in 1923!
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 10:11:11 AM EDT
Yes the mosin bolt cocks on opening so it will open harder than a bolt that cocks on closing.On surplus rifles.com someone did a write up on how to help with that buy cutting off a few coils from the firing pin spring making it easier to cock/open.This I would try a little at a time though,especially if you shoot a lot of surplus ammo as the primers tend to be harder than commercial primers.
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 8:07:35 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/21/2006 8:09:02 PM EDT by Bumblebee_Bob]
Another thing is don't try to chamber a fired casing that was fired from a different rifle. Because all chambers are different that case will fit fine in the chamber it was fired in, but may jam up and stick in a different chamber, even though both rifles headspace just fine.

I own several surplus bolt action rifles. The MN has the stiffest bolt. The Enfield No.4 has the easiest. My Springfield 03a3 is so-so. The MN absolutley has to be taken down off the shoulder to operate the bolt. The others do not. It's just the nature of the beast. The Soviets built things anvil tough - ergonomics be damned.
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