Mosin ID 101
for the "new owner" of a "re-furbished" Mosin Nagant

    There are two things a new owner wants to know first, especially if they have already gone to the forums first and others have told them this information first. Their question is "how did they know that"?
    1) Who made my rifle?
    2) What model is it?

We will start with "who made my rifle?" first. Russia was the first to "use the Mosin" but did not make it first. The first one's came from France's arsenal Chatelleraul. Soon followed by Tula,  Sestroryetsk, and Izhevsk. Later Remington, and New England Westinghouse made rifles also. There are others that made parts for Mosin rifles like Finland's Tikkakoski (Tikka),VKT ( Valmet), and Sako, but never made receivers. They made most of the other parts. There are others that made receivers after WWII, and we will get into them at a later time.

    Lets start simple with the "parts" and areas of the rifle (those we will be using first). The most important area for us right now is the "Barrel Shank" area.

Barrel Shank area of a Mosin

Typical M91/30 Mosin Nagant rifle

Barrel Shank ID

    The barrel shank is arguably one of the most important areas for ID. Check the barrel shanks below and compare it to yours. The first two photos below will be a match to most of the "refurbished" Mosin Nagant rifles being sold today. Of coarse the serial numbers and date will be different (probably), but they will be basically the same.

              Izhevsk arsenal   (Russia)

Mosin Nagant Izhevsk M91/30
                                  barrel shank    

    1) Izhevsk arsenal Mark

    2) Serial number

    3) Year made

    4) Soviet Union crest


   This example is a M91/30 made in 1943 and was made in the Izhevsk arsenal in Russia.
   It could easily be a M38 or M44 carbine, as the marks are pretty much the same

              Tula arsenal (Russia)

Tula barrel shank Mosin Nagant

    1) Serial number

    2) Year made

    3) Tula arsenal    (sometimes there is no arrow in the center of the star)

  This example is a M91/30 made in 1937 and was made in the Tula arsenal in Russia.
   It could easily also be a M38 or M44 carbine, as the marks are pretty much the same

OK, Now what model do you own?

    There are about four models that are being sold today as "re-furbished" Mosin Nagant rifles and are the most common. There is dozens of different types of Mosins made, but we are focusing on the ones that are most common to new buyers today.



M44 Carbine
Model_M44_Mosin Nagant
Has an attached bayonet that fold back onto the stock.
The stock has a cut out for the bayonet to fold all the way in.
Some stocks are solid wood and others are laminated.

M38 Carbine

Almost the same as a M44 except no bayonet.
The stock may or may not have a cut out in it for a folded bayonet.
Russia at one point only made one stock to fit both the M38 and M44.
Mostly in solid wood stocks, but have been placed in laminated M44 stocks also.
Some came in laminated M38 stocks (rare)


This rifle was made post WWII in 1959 from M91/30's. They cut them down to carbine length

So, What do you have?

    If it is not above don't worry. That just means it is a less common rifle and that is always good! Take some photos and post them in the forums! We love photos! Common or not!


Copyright © Darryl Boyd 2011. This site is protected under US and International copyright laws. No sections, articles, photos, or information from this site may be used without the written permission of the owner and the various site contributors. All photos that are not credited are property of this site, the persons that submitted them, or are in the public domain. If you feel there is use of a copyrighted photo, contact the owner and action will be taken.

The owner, and the site contributors and site host are not responsible for the use or application of material found on this site. The owner, the site host or any site contributor shall not be held responsible for any claims resulting from loss as a result of the accuracy or authenticity or misuse of the site content or material found on the site’s forums