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What is ya'lls opinion on sporterizing old military surplus firearms? I have an old Mosin Nagant M44, and I like it the way that it is, so I would not sporterize it, but if I had another one then I might consider sporterizing it. I was just curious to hear ya'lls opinions.

An old military surplus rifle, I believe it is a Mosin Nagant M38, that has not been sporterized.
http://www.sff.net/people/sanders/mn1.jpg

The same gun after it has been sporterized.
http://farm1.static.flickr.com/49/167817825_b57391246a.jpg

:usa:
 

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I prefer to leave all my rifles original because I appreciate them and their original design. That said you can also take a 98 Mauser action for example and build a beautiful rifle out of it. I have a few and it's nice to re-purpose and old beater with a bad bore, or a hack saw special into a SUB MOA rifle.
Speaking of the hack saw special that's what I call it when someone low on cash and high on do it your self meets an old surplus rifle that doesn't cost too much and "sporterizes" it by removing those ugly dog ear front sight protectors, and takes a few ounces off via a foot or so off the for end. While I don't think we should outlaw that sort of thing, it always leaves me thinking why the heck would you do that. You didn't improve the performance, and on the lightness hundreds of thousands of guys carried it that way every second of a 24 hour day for months/years and your too soft to carry it? I guess I don't understand.
On the other hand their has always been, and still are although it's now plastic injection molded, a market for drop in replacement sporting stocks, scope mounts, and even flash suppressors/muzzle breaks to spiffy up your old rifle. These modifications are a better option IMO, since they do look better that a hack sawed stock, and barrel, but thy still aren't my cup of tea. I still don't see you shooting any better because the stock is lighter, or because the muzzle break is "cool" looking. The addition of a scope /better open sights of course an exception, but it really only makes it easer to see what you are shooting at, it doesn't make the rifle shoot any better unless you have trouble seeing the target or using the existing sights.
I believe the money spent on plastic stocks, or 30 round magazine upgrades for your SKS is better spent on a project started on a high quality action that makes a perfect transformation into a sporting rifle, or on a better rifle in the first place. When I see a guy like that pic of the M39 I think wow, that guy took a $100 rifle and added $200 to it to get less performance than a $300 used Savage, or a better shooting MIL SURP M96 Sweed for $275. I just don't understand.
 

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Only Sporterized one Military firearm...and old Springfield 03-A3....I had help, but it sure turned outgood!! sure wish I still had the old girl:frown:

Like you, I appreciate the old military weapons, for the same reasons you do! But it sure is nice to see one done right with a remake!!:up: that old sniper rifle looks good in black!!:clap:
 

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The rifle is what it is/

No amount of make over is going to change a wore out barrel, a ugly stock or awful trigger. If you spend the money to replace the barrel & stock & trigger you've spent enough money to have a new Remington, Winchester, or a Ruger setting in your gun case. I sporterize a Argentine 1909 while enrolled in Trinidad State Jr. College (their gunsmith program) in Trinidad so I do know how much it costs and the time involved to complete a project such as this!! It ain't worth it. It still is what it is!! William/ra18657
 

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My Pa-in-law shoots an '03 A3 that was sporterized way back when those were plentiful and cheap. It's a nice rifle, and it's all he wants or needs.

Now if somebody were to take one of those and sporterize it today, I'd probably scream, cuz they ain't nearly as plentiful and prices for nice "originals" (nearly all have been arsenal refurbished) are on the rise.

Dad bought an original surplus M1917 (for nearly nothing) with the idea of sporterizing it back in the early 1970's. He had a new stock made for it, but thankfully that's as far as it went. I put it all back together after I realized it's got a four-digit serial number starting with 15... and it appears to be in unissued condition!

When the old war-horses were $40.00 it made sense to cut them up into something you could use to hunt with, but those days seem to be going fast.
 

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No amount of make over is going to change a wore out barrel, a ugly stock or awful trigger. If you spend the money to replace the barrel & stock & trigger you've spent enough money to have a new Remington, Winchester, or a Ruger setting in your gun case.
True if the only thing you look at is the $$ involved. Get a Mauser action, a McMillan stock, a Timney trigger and a Douglas air gauged barrel and your cost will go up, but the quality of the gun you have will be far superior the the off the shelf Remchester, and the pride of ownership will be too. Some look beyond the almighty dollar to the pride of ownership.
 

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I have a sporterized Japanese Arisaka type 99 that I am working on right now. It has been turned into a 358 Winchester. I just glass bedded the front lug area last night. I hope to have it all complete in a couple weeks.
 

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The guy I bought the action from had the barrel already chambered. I just had to finish inletting the stock and install the barrel. After assembly I had all the metal parts molycoated in flat black. I have a couple hundred invested and a few hours doing what I love to do, tinker with my guns.
 

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When it comes to the Mosin...Rock Solid Industries makes a great scope mount, CHEAP pillars for pillar bedding, bent bolt handles, and replacement stronger screws...also Huber Concepts makes a rolling ball anti-friction trigger for it that is like night and day...Lothar Walther has an option to make a new Mosin Nagant Barrel (I know, it's stupid to do that much to an old cheap gun...you just gotta love them to do it)

Check out these SWEET mods: http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=236602
 

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The second picture the bolt must have been bent for that scope to be on it because there is no way the bolt could open any other way, but I'm going to refinish my mosin and maybe pay a neighbor that does wood work to do a design on the stock
 

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The second picture the bolt must have been bent for that scope to be on it because there is no way the bolt could open any other way, but I'm going to refinish my mosin and maybe pay a neighbor that does wood work to do a design on the stock
There are several place online that sell the bent bolt handles or will tig weld yours if you send it to them...there is one that will even custom make you a bolt handle:

http://www.angelfire.com/gundam/boltman/bolt_work/

http://www.rocksolidind.com/Mosin Nagant.html

If your neighbor does a good job, post some pics and ask how much he would charge to do others
 

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i have had two Arisakas both sporterized 1st was one i bought that was a 308 cal the last one was re barreled into 22-250 was pretty accurate never shot it longer than 100 yd. longest range i was able to find at the time . kind of wish i still had it. be very careful with arisakas check the firing pin close and you got to check the bore make sure it's not a plugged bore. when your buying one they are training rifles.
 

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i have had two Arisakas both sporterized 1st was one i bought that was a 308 cal the last one was re barreled into 22-250 was pretty accurate
I hear those are good rifles...never shot one though.

I have always wanted to sporterize a Swiss K31...there is just no options of a new stock that I can find...I hear Boyds makes one, but haven't seen one.
 

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I saw a great quote in a gun magazine the other day: Sporterizing an original military rifle is is the best way I know to spend $300 on a $300 weapon & make it worth about $300.

The well made original military bolt actions (Mausers, Springfields, etc.) in decent shape have increased in value so much that it doesn't make much sense to sporterize one unless you are going to drop big $$$ into making it into a high end gun. Back in the days when you could buy a clean 98K for $50 it was a different equation.

Dropping an SKS barreled action into a sporter stock is a different matter altogether.
 

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I have a sporterized Japanese Arisaka type 99 that I am working on right now. It has been turned into a 358 Winchester. I just glass bedded the front lug area last night. I hope to have it all complete in a couple weeks.
I have a 6.5 jap I rechambered to a .260 due to cost of ammo. Haven't gotten any further than that so far. I'm wanting to put a new stock on it as well as a scope. It was my wife's grandfather's gun. I plan on fixing it up and giving it to one of my sons. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
 
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