$300 to spend, K31 or M39 or ?


PDA






offthepaper
March 20, 2008, 11:09 PM
Just came into a small windfall, about $300. I want to buy a new rifle on a bit of a budget. I always wanted a K31, but I also love the history of the Finn M39, and the MN's in general (I have several Russkies). I could add a small bit more if something really caught my eye. Whatever I get it will be a shooter, not a collector. I have also thought about
a nice 22lr. I know I'm all over the place with my mindset. Decisions, decisions, help me nail down a drifting mind. If you had around $300 for a new/used rifle, what would you get?

If you enjoyed reading about "$300 to spend, K31 or M39 or ?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
mnw42
March 20, 2008, 11:15 PM
I don't think that you would get a decedent M39 for $300, but for $400-450 and M39 is a truly superb arm in every respect. For $300 you cant go wrong with a K31.

I'd day buy the K31 and put any remaining funds into a .22 and ammo.

Flash!
March 20, 2008, 11:16 PM
I shot my K31 for the first time today..... BUY ONE! accurate right out of the box.......

MilsurpShooter
March 20, 2008, 11:20 PM
K31. Brick of ammo too then start reading up on reloading lol

Avenger29
March 20, 2008, 11:21 PM
K31. Get thee a Lee hand press and dies to go along with it if you do not reload yet.

Have fun.

Deer Hunter
March 20, 2008, 11:26 PM
I got my M39 for 200. I suggest you get it.

Vaarok
March 20, 2008, 11:50 PM
You could get two M-39s. Do so.

Actually, you can get a M-39, AND a K-31 for $400. And have some left over for ammo.

Squidward
March 21, 2008, 12:44 AM
A K 31 (check Gunbroker) and 120 rounds of ammo is within your price range.

Sunray
March 21, 2008, 12:53 AM
Congratulations. $300 isn't a whole lot any more, but it's still $300. Busted a tie rod on a pot hole last week. $356Cdn. to fix it.
"...I always wanted a K31..." That'd do it for me. Buy the dies and a bunch of brass too though.

Mikee Loxxer
March 21, 2008, 12:58 AM
Get the K31

Dr. Peter Venkman
March 21, 2008, 01:00 AM
Buy a K31 for $200, buy a $70 St. Marie clamp-on scope mount for it, put on a scope you have, and shoot awesome groups.

Or look around on the market for a nice and pretty M39 with history. Mines a 1945 SAKO off of an 1896 receiver.

I did both, but the mount is a work-in-progress for the K31. Already have the scope. :D

jdc1244
March 21, 2008, 01:00 AM
The K31 is a must own.

elmerfudd
March 21, 2008, 01:33 AM
Both are great rifles, so you really can't go wrong with either. I think the K31 is a better shooter, is finished better and is much easier to scope, but it sure ain't cheap to shoot. The M39 is more rugged, has way more history and lots of affordable surplus ammo available. Cartridgewise, their ballistics are almost identical. M39's cost about $100 more than K31's and should be more carefully inspected since they were shot using corrosive ammo.

They're both rifles produced by countries that believed in marksmanship and it's evident in the rifles. I think the K31 is probably the better rifle of the two, but I rarely bring mine to the range. Ammo is just too pricey to shoot it that much. My M39 on the other hand gets shot a lot.

TexasRifleman
March 21, 2008, 01:34 AM
I paid $299 for this Sako M39 last week from gunsnammo.com

I am very happy with it. I think the wood will clean up a little more, just need some really hot weather but overall I'm very happy.
The ammo is just SO cheap....

http://homepage.mac.com/jayc67/m39.jpg

Daemon688
March 21, 2008, 01:54 AM
K31 hands down. I can't comment on the barrels of the Finns but my K31 looked brand spanking new. I can't say the same for my 91/30 or M44. The trigger is far superior on the K31 and it feels more solid.

elmerfudd
March 21, 2008, 02:34 AM
The triggers on M39's are much, much better than on a 91/30 or M44. I'd probably rate the K31's trigger slightly higher, but only slightly. As far as which feels more solid, for that the M39 wins hands down. They are built like tanks.

K31's do tend to have very nice bores.

wnycollector
March 21, 2008, 06:41 AM
Get the M39 and spend every cent you have left over on ammo!

hags
March 21, 2008, 10:09 AM
Without a doubt get the K-31. A serious performer and nice shooter. You'll actually want to take it to the range because it's an accurate rifle.
You can't say that for alot of mil-surp stuff, I'm talking group size, sure alot are "combat" accurate but most K-31s are match grade accurate.
The triggers are exceptional and the craftsmanship can't be beat.

taliv
March 21, 2008, 10:48 AM
today would be a good day to buy $300 worth of gold


edit: sorry, my bad... markets are closed for good friday today. try monday

GD
March 21, 2008, 10:56 AM
You wouldnt be wrong to buy either one. Both are noted for their accuracy. Right now the K31s are rising in price but you should be able to get one with a 60 round battle pack for under $300. You should be able to get a M39 for just under $300 also. The last gun show I was at, you could have gotten both for $300. There are still deals out there.

Soybomb
March 21, 2008, 11:41 AM
The k31 is the only surplus rifle I've taken apart so far that really wows me when I take it apart.

MudPuppy
March 21, 2008, 12:11 PM
today would be a good day to buy $300 worth of gold

Off topic, but look close at that--6 months ago is a good time to buy gold. Today's a good day to buy 5.45 and I think I will order some!

I only have a K31, but it is nice. I want a M39 but I'm holding off for a bit yet, as I think we'll still be able to buy those after november and I'm spending my extra on surplus ammo and AR lowers.

Mr White
March 21, 2008, 12:39 PM
Both are excellent guns to own. Both are very accurate and have great triggers. The K31 has a better trigger IMO. But buying either one is a tradeoff. The M39 costs more to purchase but the ammo is dirt cheap (relatively speaking). The K31 is dirt cheap to purchase, but feeding it will send you to the poor house.

If you can find a K31 chambered in 7.62x54, I'd jump on that puppy without hesitation. If they happen to have 2, PM me!

goon
March 21, 2008, 04:02 PM
If you can get an M-39 for that I'd go that route.
Ammo is more common and cheaper.
Not really an issue if you handload though.


But I agree with those who say spend your money on ammo, hi-cap mags, and any EBR's that you think you might ever want.
I'd put an extra $300 into that.

But the M-39 isn't a bad second.

Vaarok
March 21, 2008, 04:47 PM
http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v709/Vaarok/tigerm39left2.jpg

C'mon, you know you need another Mosin...

TheGrimReaper
March 21, 2008, 10:56 PM
K 31.

MiddleAgedKen
March 21, 2008, 11:00 PM
Hard to go wrong either way, but if it were me I'd go K31.

MaterDei
March 21, 2008, 11:50 PM
Vaarok, that is a beautiful Mosin!

I've got Mosins but I don't have a K31. Therefore I'd go for the K31 unless I could find a Mosin like the one Vaarok found. :)

35 Whelen
March 22, 2008, 03:05 AM
If it tells you anything, I've owned one M39 (sold it) and FIVE K-31's. The
K-31's are so, so sweet. Triggers are lovely, workmanship is beyond compare. Will shoot just about anything you feed it.
Check out the results of the CMP match:
http://clubs.odcmp.com/cgi-bin/report_eventAward.cgi?matchID=2113&eventID=14&awardID=1

Mind boggling how many competitors used the K-31. BTW...<ahem>..I'm liquidating some of my K-31's!
35W

cracked butt
March 22, 2008, 03:45 PM
The K-31 is a far better rifle.

Garbage srplus ammo is easy and cheap to find for the M-39, but it won't last forever, and for the difference in price between the two rifles currently, you can get set up for reloading 7.5x55.

cracked butt
March 22, 2008, 03:48 PM
Check out the results of the CMP match:
http://clubs.odcmp.com/cgi-bin/repor...D=14&awardID=1


That also makes a good case for getting a swedish mauser.:p

GD
March 22, 2008, 06:52 PM
I am not sure what would make a K31 better than a M39. I own multiple copies of both and both are very accurate. The M39 has been tried in actual combat and was not found wanting. The K31 has never seen action in combat and thus has not been tested adequately in those conditions. I also do not know why one would classify military surplus ammo as junk when Czech silver tip and other 7.62x54 is very accurate in the M39. Yes, it is corrosive but I am paying 15 cents per round on 7.62x54 and 50 cents per round on GP11. When both ammo is getting me consistently under 1.5 MOA on both rifles, whats not to like in being cheap?
The bottom line is both rifles are excellent and you would not be making a bad decision in getting either (or be like me and get both). I only like accurate military surplus and that is why I only will buy accordingly. The only other rifles I have found to be equally, consistently, accurate has been the Swedish Mauser M1896, the Czech M98/22 mauser, and the Mosin M91/59. I have yet to buy any of these rifles and have it do worse than 1.5 MOA.

offthepaper
March 23, 2008, 03:47 PM
Well, it looks athough a lot people would have a preference of a K31. Those who suggest the M39 seem to offer good valid arguments for their pick as well. As I stated in my original post, This rifle is destined to be a shooter, so cost of shooting could be a factor. I know 54R ammo is pretty cheap right now, and the GP is quality ammo, but pricey. It seems that getting set up for handloading is almost a nessesity when getting a K31. Can anyone tell me how much they are spending to produce 7.5 Swiss ammo by handloading? Is there any market for nonloadable swiss brass?

35 Whelen
March 23, 2008, 04:55 PM
Well, it looks athough a lot people would have a preference of a K31. Those who suggest the M39 seem to offer good valid arguments for their pick as well. As I stated in my original post, This rifle is destined to be a shooter, so cost of shooting could be a factor. I know 54R ammo is pretty cheap right now, and the GP is quality ammo, but pricey. It seems that getting set up for handloading is almost a nessesity when getting a K31. Can anyone tell me how much they are spending to produce 7.5 Swiss ammo by handloading? Is there any market for nonloadable swiss brass?

Regarding the x54r, yes there is lots of relatively inexpensive surplus ammo, but, at least for me, its quality is seriously wanting. I've never found any that came close to the accuracy I want. I've shot quite a bit of the GP-11 and even fired a High Power match with it and it'd be difficult (expensive...it'd take high quality bullets) to handload ammo as good as the GP-11. It would cost about the same to load for either caliber, were it not for the fact that the 7.62x54r requires the non-standard .310, .311 or .312 bullets. The 7.5x55 use the common .308" bullet which can be bought in surplus form. In fact, one of my most accurate loads in my K-31 uses the plain ol' Hornady 150 gr. FMJBT.
When I started loading the 7.5, I just bought 5 boxes of Prvi Partizan ammo and fired them, then I had 100 cases. Grafs sells 7.5x55 brass or you can use 284 Winchester brass. It just has to be necked up to .30 caliber and you're set.
Bottom line to me is this: If you're going to handlaod, get the K-31, if not and you just want to shoot and aren't concerned about really good accuracy, get an M-39.
With the price of ammo AND components these days, I'm proud that I'm set up to cast my own bullets!
35W

offthepaper
March 24, 2008, 05:06 PM
Thanks everyone for the input and info. all opinions appreciated.

Well I just got off the phone from ordering Walnut K31 from Classic Arms. I asked for a handpick w/soldiers tag, but was told all the rifles with tags have been sold already. The woman did tell me these are running very thin and these could be the last seen on that site. I hope the handpick option will get me a decent example for the collection. I am also ordering a set of reloading dies on payday. Has anyone recently recieved a K31 from Classic that can tell of it's condition. I saw a few sites that had them a bit cheaper, but I've always been very satisfied with anything I ordered from them. Now the waiting game.

elmerfudd
March 24, 2008, 05:37 PM
Congratulations! As I said in my original post, you were choosing between two excellent rifles and you really couldn't go wrong either way. K31's typically have very nice metal and pristine bores. The wood on them often is somewhat rough though and typically has most of it's wear on the underside of the buttstock right in front of the butt plate. The reason for this is said to be the Swiss soldiers kicking their boots or crampons against the stock in order to knock the snow off their feet. I'm a little dubious myself however. It's just my pet theory, but I kind of suspect it might be due to pushing the buttstock into the ground while assuming a prone firing position.

cracked butt
March 24, 2008, 06:57 PM
The reason for this is said to be the Swiss soldiers kicking their boots or crampons against the stock in order to knock the snow off their feet. I'm a little dubious myself however.

Its close but not quite.

During their drills, the recruits had to slam their rifle butts on the ground either right next to their boots or against their boots which were hobnailed and damaged the stocks. Also 'stacking' rifles in the snow exposed the butt end of the rifle to moisture.

Danus ex
March 24, 2008, 07:11 PM
Has anyone recently recieved a K31 from Classic that can tell of it's condition.

I got a handpicked walnut stock K31 from Classic Arms in October. Its condition is different than what I typically see with K31s. Normally, I find K31s with a beech stock that's a bit beat up but excellent finish on the metal and a very good or excellent bore.

My K31 is all matching, has a very early serial number, and has a near excellent stock. However, the metal finish is very worn--down to maybe 20% bluing on the left side of the receiver. It's honest-looking wear, no scratches or anything. That said, the best part about this rifle is the bore--it looks almost unfired. Sharp rifling all the way to the muzzle, and metal so shiny it seems to generate its own light.

TimboKhan
March 24, 2008, 08:18 PM
Hmm.... I am probably going to get my "Mosin Nagant Zealots Card" removed for saying this, but I would go with the K31. I love Mosins to death, but the K31 is a blast to shoot, generally pretty accurate, and they are starting to get harder and harder to find. The mosin... well, you need one of those too, but you can always live vicariously through a 91/30 until you save enough for your next purchase.....

TexasRifleman
March 24, 2008, 10:15 PM
I love Mosins to death, but the K31 is a blast to shoot, generally pretty accurate, and they are starting to get harder and harder to find.

I had a K31 first but when it got more expensive to shoot than any other rifle I owned I had to look at alternatives......

That's what pushed me to the M39, simply the cost of ammo. The K31 is a very very nice rifle.

TimboKhan
March 25, 2008, 04:39 AM
I had a K31 first but when it got more expensive to shoot than any other rifle I owned I had to look at alternatives......

True statement. I suppose if you reload, this is something of a moot point, but I am not in a situation where I can, so it is expensive. I buy small amounts of ammo for it when I can, and stockpile enough that I take it out every 6 months or so. Wolf or Sellier and Belliot, I can't remember which for some reason, now makes a load for it. I honestly don't think it is as good in terms of accuracy as GP11, but it works decently.

That being said, 7.62x54, while still cheap, is on the rise. Luckily for me I have about 10 battlepacks of the stuff sitting around, but it is getting more expensive.

col_tapiocca
March 25, 2008, 06:28 AM
Congratulations! For you decision for the K31 it`s really a nice surplus rifle for the money. (Here in Switzerland you get it from $50 - $350.
But if I`ve to choose from both, I`ll rather get the finnish M39. I don`t know the US market, but we got enougth K31 but sinnish M39 are harder to find.

But with you K31, you get a well made and accurate rifle. Even the GP11 is a little expensive, you`ll enjoy it.

If you enjoyed reading about "$300 to spend, K31 or M39 or ?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!