Gun of the week number 6: Russian Nagant M1895 Revolver

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I admit, I have a fondness for Soviet guns.  I currently own 3 Ak’s, 2 Nagant Pistols, 6 Tokerov models and 5 Makarov caliber pistols and a few Mosin Nagant rifles. But the first Soviet weapon that I bought was The Nagant Revolver. It was the first guns I bought when I got my Curio and Relic Federal Firearms License. This license enables me to buy any gun over 50 years old or guns deemed of a historical nature by the ATF. When I bought these guns, the first one was $99 and the second one was $120. I think they are a little more expensive, but they still can be purchased cheaply, although the prices seem to be rising lately due to short supply.

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This gun is over 50 years old and it is historic. I actually have two of them now in the family. One is fine and I bought one for my son a few years ago for Christmas. I just love the look of this gun. The fact that is was designed in 1895 makes it more an interesting artifact.  This gun was designed so soldiers in the field could fix most problems with a hammer and a screwdriver/chisel. One of mine is dated 1940 and the other one is dated 1938.  Loading the gun is interesting, you pull a level down and then you have access to the cylinder so you can load 7 bullets. Then you push the level back up and you are ready to go.  Once the gun is fired, you must again pull the leverl down and this is a rod in front of the gun that you push in to eject each spent casing. It is not a very fast gun to reload.

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The M1895 started to be replaced by the Tokarev semi-automatic pistol in 1933, but was still produced and used in great numbers during World War II. Despite being supplemented after 1930 by the Tokarev, it was never fully replaced until the arrival of the Makarov pistol in 1952, Even after that these guns were still sometimes still given to loyal Communist Party members as reward for their loyalty.

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Firing the Gun

This is the most inaccurate gun that I have ever fired. If you want to hit the side of a barn at 20 feet, you might get better luck throwing the gun at the barn instead of shooting it. In the War this pistol worked best when you were firing it within a few feat of your target. It works in bought single and double action. The single action is normal. This gun requires a great deal of force in Double Action mode.

The ammo was hard to fine until about a year ago. Last time, I bought some ammo it was 14 surplus soviet cartridge for about $7.  One advantage of the round, if proper brass can be found, is that it leaves the chambers totally clean, and there is no need to scrape lead and powder residue out.

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7.62x38mmR (7.62 mm Nagant) cartridge, left, shown next to a .32 S&W Long Cartridge and a .22 LR cartridge for comparison.

The projectile is seated below the mouth of the cartridge, with the cartridge crimp sitting just above the bullet. When fired in the Nagant revolver, the crimp expands into the forcing cone, completing the gas-seal and ostensibly increasing muzzle velocity by approximately 23 m/s (75 ft/s).

The 7.62 mm calibre was chosen, in part, to simplify the tooling used in barrel making and manufacture of projectiles—the Russian service rifle of the time—the Mosin Nagant M91 featured an identical bore diameter, being chambered for the 7.62×54R rifle cartridge.

Description from Wikipedia

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The Nagant M1895 Revolver is a seven-shot, gas-seal revolver designed and produced by Belgian industrialist Léon Nagant for the Russian Empire. The Nagant M1895 was chambered for a proprietary cartridge, 7.62x38R, and featured an unusual “gas-seal” system, in which the cylinder moved forward when the gun was cocked, to close the gap between the cylinder and the barrel, providing a boost to the muzzle velocity of the fired projectile and allowing the weapon to be suppressed (an unusual ability for a revolver)

Technical characteristics

The on-gas seal revolvers have a small gap (known as a flash gap) between the cylinder and the barrel; the small gap between the cylinder and barrel is necessary to allow the revolver’s cylinder to revolve, presenting a new, loaded chamber for firing. This necessitates that the bullet jump the gap when fired, which may have an adverse effect on accuracy, especially if the barrel and chamber are misaligned, and also presents a path for the escape of high-pressure and high-temperature gases from behind the bullet. Expensive revolvers such as Korth and Manurhin are hand-fitted, keeping the gap to a minimum. Mass-produced revolvers such as Smith and Wesson may have a gap as large as .25 mm. The M1895 has a mechanism which, as the hammer is cocked, first turns the cylinder and then moves it forward, closing the gap between the cylinder and the barrel. The cartridge, also unique, plays an important part in sealing the gun to the escape of propellant gases. The bullet is deeply seated, entirely within the cartridge case, and the case is slightly reduced in diameter at its mouth. The barrel features a short conical section at its rear; this accepts the mouth of the cartridge, completing the gas seal. By sealing the gap, the velocity of the bullet is increased by 50 to 150 ft/s (15 to 45 m/s). This feature also eliminates the possibility of injury through the dangerous expansion of gases from the cylinder behind the barrel, which are easily capable of severing a finger if the user holds the gun incorrectly (with a finger positioned in front of the cylinder during fire) – a noted safety-issue in conventional revolvers.[5]

History and usage

The M1895 revolver was used extensively by the Russian Imperial Army and later by the Soviet Union after the Russian Revolution. In Russian service, it was known for its extreme sturdiness and ability to withstand abuse. As one former Imperial Russian officer stated, “if anything went wrong with the M1895, you could fix it with a hammer”.[citation needed]

It was widely employed by the Bolshevik secret police, the Cheka, as well as its Soviet successor agencies, the OGPU and NKVD. In the police role, it was frequently seen with a cut-down barrel to aid in concealment by plainclothes agents. Despite the advent of the more modern Soviet TT pistol, the M1895 remained in production and use throughout World War II.

Christmas Story and Vintage Christmas Gun Advertisements

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I already wrote about remember when toy guns where a good Christmas present. .  I have bought my son two real guns over the past two Christmases and he surprised me last year with a gun, but it wasn’t just any gun.

After all the giving of the presents was over last year, my son pulls out a package.   It is rifle shaped.  I open it and it is my father-in-law’s M1A. It was my favorite gun of his. It is the original  SpringField Armory National Match and is one of the early ones, It has a 4 digital serial number 52xx.  My son had bought it from his grandfather for $100 and was giving it to me for Christmas. (His grandfather was getting rid of his guns..He is now unfortunately in a full time care facility and can no longer shoot or even possess his guns)

My 16 year old took it upon himself to convince his grandfather to sell him the gun, paid him $100 of his own money, and then hid the rifle in the trunk of my borrowed car, and drove it home. (Luckily he was not stopped, that could have been a bad incident)

Words failed me. I was so amazed at getting this gun from my son.  Here is the gun:

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It is the best gift I have ever received.

Now here are some vintage advertisements about giving a gun for Christmas

Here are some advertisements from the past suggesting that guns are a good president for Christmas. And they are a very nice for Christmas.

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red_ryder_ad  Daisy-gun-ad-Christmas-e1385070921319

Ok this last one is not about guns.. It is just interesting

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I received the UZI violin case

For new people to the blog, I did a series on how to built your own fully legal UZI carbine.  You can see the complete instructions here.

I found a series of cases from AKcases, and ordered one off their ebay site for $175. They are normally $245 and they have them for many different styles of guns. I just received the case. Here is the violin case closed:

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Here is the case open. The case comes with either a red or blue interior. I chose blue.

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And finally here the case with the UZI carbine, I made during the build:

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The Velcro strips hold both the gun and up to 8 magazines. The interior and exterior is very good quality.

I highly recommend this case. The only problem is this case, looks just like my kid’s actual violin case, it

pretty embarrassing ( and highly illegal) if he took the wrong case to school. So I can’t leave this outside the gun room.

Updated: Remember When Toy Guns were a Great Christmas present

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Here is a vintage toy gun commerical

My Family

My son is 17. When he was under 10, he would have put this gun on the top of his Christmas list.

Unfortunately now, any kid playing with this in his yard, would be shot by a rogue cop out to kill someone, because he knows he can get away with it.

I bought airsoft guns and we used to shoot them in the backyard. I spent $300 for an AK that looked like a real AK but shot plastic bullets.  He and his friends used to play in the woods behind the house. By the time my son was 11, he was shooting real guns with his Grandfather and Uncle, both are Ex Navy and Police Officers.  I run into the toy guns every now and then in the basement or garage.  Ever since, he fired a real gun, he had no interest in the toys and airsoft.

Now he has his own guns. (It’s legal in my state, for a father or grandfather to give a child under 18 guns. He can’t buy long guns until age 18 and handguns from a dealer until age 21, but he can be given guns. He is an expert marksman with pistol or rifle. He can put 30 rounds into the center ring at 200 yard without a problem.  I can barely see the target at 200 yards these days.

His grandfather gave him Enfield Jungle Carbine  and a Colt Government 1911.  I have given him a Nagant Pistol, and a German Mauser, the over the last two Christmases. This year he wanted something else instead of guns. He still likes guns, he loves the new UZI,

Kids not being allowed to Play

Now a school kid can’t even point his finger at a playmate at recess and say bang without being suspended or arrested by lunatic school administrators.

We are losing part of our heritage when kids can’t play any more. No more cowboys and Indians, because that’s racist. No more playing with guns because of “Zero Tolerance” rules. A 6th grader kisses a girls hand and is labeled a “sex offender”(Happened last week).

The real America is slowly drifting away.  I actually think we are too far gone, and our next generation is doomed.  I hope I am wrong, I really do. But just in case, I have a secure gun room filled with guns and ammo and if needed, I or my son will use it to protect our families when civilization crashes and burns.

If things turn around, then I have a great gun collection that my son can use or sell for a bunch of money.

We win either way.

Gun of the week #5: Romanian SAR-3

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I have been using more historic guns in this weekly series, this week, I picked a more modern guy. This is a strange gun and I got it really cheap because potential buyers were confused by the stock and the caliber.  I bought this a year ago on the night that New Town shootings happened. I was already going to this giant new gun store that had just recently opened to pickup a Ar-15 stripped receiver that I had ordered and I saw this in the racks with the other guns for $399.  It had a FAL like folding stock and it said .5.56/.223 caliber on the side of the gun.

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I had never heard of a AK that used .556/.223caliber before and neither had the salesman, so I did some quick research on it and figured out that $399 was a good price.

The Romanian SAR series of rifles was imported in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Much like the MAK-90, they can take double stack mags, but do not have the threaded muzzle or bayonet lug. Imported by Century, SARs had a US pistol grip, US piston, and US trigger group installed to make them 922r compliant. They come in three calibers, 7.62×39, 5.45×39, and 5.56×45 in the SAR1, SAR2, and SAR3 respectively. These rifles are generally well thought of, and are often good shooters. They say that Fit and finish are often less than perfect as is common with Romanian guns, but this gun looks and shoots fine.

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The main issue with these guns, tends to be the magazines, which are usually modified from some other gun for use with this gun. The magazines are hard to find. You just can’t use a standard AK or AR mag.  I have two Bulgarian Circle 10 plastic mags which work most of the time, and I bought two German Weiger metal magazines, which tend to work 100% of the time.

The stock is aftermarket and just looks strange on the gun. I bought another type of stock but I have never got around to installing it.  The guns shoots really well and confuses people on the range when they ask me if it is  an Ak-47 or AK-74 and I tell them no, it’s a SAR-3.

I usually joke about this gun, telling people it is the most evil rifle out there, because it as a AK that shoot AR caliber bullets.  It’s been a year, and while I do like the gun, I am not sure if I am going to keep it. I waver back and forth about keeping it or selling it to fund a new purchase.

Building the Semi Automatic Uzi : Extra

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Indoor Range

This is the 7th post of 7 posts about Building an Semi automatic UZI carbine.  See Posts 1 to 6 on thjis site buy choosing the category. Building the UZI from the category menu.

I took the UZI shooting again today, for it’s second time at the range.  It worked really fine again and I still pleased with the build.

Here’s a video of my associate firing it

Cool Case for the UZI

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I have been carrying the UZI in a CMP case, above, I got from the Civilian Marksman Program for one of my M1 carbines.  But then I found this great violin case:

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uzi case red

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uzi case blue

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I found these violin case online from http://shop.akases.com for $245.00 and I ordered one immediately.

I will update this post when I receive it.