Colonel Sergei Ivanovich Mosin

The Rifle Mosin or it's western name, the Mosin Nagant rifle owes it's beginnings to the circumstance of modern warfare. The advent of the repeating rifle led the Russian Imperial government to start a search for a replacement for their antiquated Berdans. A commission was established to find a design that would compete with the Mauser, Lebel, Lee-Medford,   Mannlicher, Schmidt-Rubin and the  Krag-Jorgensen. They could have never imagined that the result of their efforts would see service in battle for the next 80 years while the other rifles became museum pieces.  A  Russian army Captain, Sergei Ivanovich Mosin would eventually produce the winner of the competition for a new design.

    Mosin's rifle wasn't an overnight success. He began work on the design in 1883. His primary focus was on the development of a magazine fed infantry rifle. He submitted several designs for internal fed magazine rifles to the commission in 1884 and 1885. His initial designs were in 10.6 mm.  Between 1887 and 1889, working with the smaller calibers then coming into general use among European armies, Mosin developed a 5-shot, straight-line magazine prototype in 7.62 mm; employing the antediluvian Russian measurements of the era it was designated 3-line caliber. The liniya, or line is equivalent to 0. 10 in or 2.54 mm; therefore, 3 linii equals 7.62 mm or .30 in.(Lapin, "The Mosin Nagant Rifle")

All of his efforts were rejected until October 1889. The Belgian weapons designer Leon Nagant submitted his 3.5 line (8.89 mm) rifle and 500 rounds of ammunition for testing by the Russian government. Both designers' weapons were tested from 1890 through 1891 by units of the Russian Army. Initially, the home team headed by Mosin lost as the army favored Nagant's design. However, Russia being Russia, the votes were overturned in favor of Mosin. The reason behind this move was most likely political. Typical of Russian ingenuity and political deftness, both designs were incorporated into a rifle that featured the Mosin model with the Nagant designed feed system. This rifle was designated the Pekhotniya vintovka obr. 1891g. or Three-Line Rifle of the year 1891. The rifle was entered into production in 1892 at the arsenal in Chatellerault under contract and later in Russia at the Ishevsk and Sestroretsk arsenals.

Sergei Ivanovich Mosin (pronouced "Moi-seen") was born My 5, 1849. He entered into a military academy at age 12 where he excelled as a soldier. In 1867, he entered the Alexandrovskoye Military High School in Moscow. Upon leaving Alexandrovskoye in 1870, he decided to go to the artillery branch and transferred to the Mikhailovskoye Artillery Academy. He graduated in 1875 and transferred to the Tula Arsenal where he became the head of the machining division. It was here he began his career as a weapons designer by first making improvements to the Berdan II and later the collaboration with Nagant to design the Rifle of Three Lines of the Year 1891. Mosin eventually rose to the rank of Colonel and was appointed as the director of the Sestroretsk arsenal. He died on February 8, 1902 and was buried in Tula.








Monument to Sergej Mosin in Sestroretsk