The Mosin Nagant is a bolt action, Russian military rifle that was produced from 1891-1965. These guns are commonly available for usually no more than $150 USD. The one caveat to owning this rifle is that when you purchase one it will be completely caked and filled with a oil coating known as Cosmoline. This was coated on to the guns before storage and is an absolute nightmare to get out of all the working parts of a firearm. But if you take the time to do the dirty deed of removing this gunk you will be rewarded with a great shooting reliable and rust free firearm.
So I'm ready if you are, lets dive into this greasy old rifle
note: please be cautious and do not have ammunition anywhere near this firearm while cleaning. We are all adults and using some common sense and care will help to ensure your safety while handling a firearm. Also you are cleaning this gun and making modifications at your own will and discretion, and by following this Instructable you are doing so at your own risk. I hold no responsibility if anything happens to you as a result of cleaning and modding your firearm.
Step 1: Tools and Materials
So to break down and clean the Mosin you will need :
-several solvent resistant brushes
-container to soak parts
-20gauge shotgun brush and rigid cleaning rod (optional)
-1500 grit sandpaper
-solvent resistant gloves
-Rem Oil or a similar firearm lubricant
Step 2: Removing and Disassembling the Bolt.
In this first step we will be removing the bolt from the rifle as well as taking it apart to get all of the cosmoline out of the nooks and crannies.
Step 3: Removing the Bayonet
In this step you will remove the bayonet (optional) that may or may not be on your particular Mosin Nagant.
Step 4: Removing the Magazine
In this step you will remove the magazine assembly as well as the spring assembly that holds pressure against the bullets while in the magazine
Step 5: Removing the Barrel and Cleaning Rod
Step 6: Cleaning the Barrel Inside and Out
In this step you will begin the arduous task of removing the gunked up cosmoline from your fine firearm.
Step 7: Cleaning the Bolt Parts
This is one of the most important steps so be sure to take your time and be extremely thorough. You need to clean every little nook and crannie of the bolt. other wise you may be curse with a condition known as "Mosin slap" where the bolt needs excessive force, often in the form of a slapping hand to open and close.
Step 8: Cleaning the Magazine Assembly
In this step you will take apart and scrub the magazine spring assembly. be sure to be thorough as this part has several small hinges that need to be cleaned well.
Step 9: Polish the Firing Pin/ and Modifying the Firing Pin.
In this step you are going to learn a very simple modification that will help to make the firearm operate more smoothly and make the bolt action smoother and with less resistance.
Step 10: Wipe Down That Stock in Preparation for Reassembly.
This step is pretty straightforward. You want to rub down your stock with some mineral spirits to remove any cosmoline that may have accumulated on the surface of the wood.
Step 12: Firing Pin Spacing
So most of the Mosin Rifles that I have seen typically come with a little pouch that contains a couple of pieces that give your cleaning rod a "T" handle as well as a teardrop shaped tool that has some notches on the side of it. These notches are used to space your firing pin.
Step 13: Re Installing the Barrel and Cleaning Rod
At this point you are going to begin re-installing the parts onto the gun stock. You are going to want to wipe down the outside of the barrel with a lubricant as well as run a jag with a patch soaked in oil down the clean barrel.
Step 14: Re Install the Magazine Assembly
In this step you will be putting your magazine assembly back into the stock and fastening it to the barrel assembly
Step 15: Re Installing the Bayonet
You are almost done putting the gun back together at this point, and I would recommend getting another person to help with this step as an extra pair of hands are very useful
Step 16: Re Install the Bolt
This is the last step in putting your gun back together.
Step 17: Conclusion
Well that is it. I hope you learned something and I hope that you and your Mosin Nagant have many trouble free years of shooting ahead of you.
I would also like to say a special thanks to: Josh McAninch of Detroit Gun League . for doing the work while I took all the fancy pictures.
And as a bonus, I took all of the mineral spirits when we were done cleaning and put it in a bottle to allow it to settle. Enjoy the gross photo. and remember mineral spirits start out as clear as water.