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Swiss K31 or Finn M39?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by offthepaper, Aug 14, 2007.

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  1. offthepaper

    offthepaper Member

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    Sitting around thinking (almost always dangerous:eek:) about a fairly accurate Milsurp for around $300. My first thoughts were to a Swiss K31. I've always heard how accurate they were, and the workmanship they showed.
    But then I began to consider the reputation the Mosin Finn M39 have earned. It also is said to be one of the more accurate milsurps (around my price range). So I have the dilema, K31 or M39?
    I have never fired either one, and have only handled them each briefly. The one thing that does give the Finn an everso slight edge in my own mind is that I already have 7 Mosins, and it would make a great addition to that collection. I think they would'nt be that far apart in cost.
    Which do you think is the more accurate of the two? Which is more fun to shoot? Which would you get? Why?
     
  2. Ohio Rifleman

    Ohio Rifleman Member

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    Never fired either, but I'd be inclined to go with the Mosin because of the (relatively) inexpensive and plentiful ammo. Though the surplus 7.62x54R seems to be drying up. But there is NO surplus 7.5 Swiss. I'd go with the Finn.
     
  3. Will Learn

    Will Learn Member

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  4. Coronach

    Coronach Moderator Emeritus

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    There isn't? Then what's in my basement?????

    ;)

    Mike
     
  5. Gordon

    Gordon Member

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    Both!
     
  6. Gustav

    Gustav Member

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    I love both of these rifles they are built to a very high standard the Finnish Mosin M-39 is a bit heavier and the bolt is allot slower to manipulate than the K-31s straight pull bolt which is lightning fast beating any other bolt action rifle for speed including the different Enfields.
    The K-31 tends to be a bit more accurate than the M-39 but ammo is getting hard to find for the Swiss rifle but 7.62x54R is around and can be found allot easier now and in the future.
    Many M-39s have seen allot of use as training rifles or have been held in reserve until recently so check one out before buying if possible.
    The M-39 was among the last of the Mosin Nagants to be fielded other than the 1944 and 91/59 carbine neither of which IMHO can compare to the Finnish rifle as it is two steps above and beyond either of the carbines.
    If you can swing it I would check all of the curio and relic dealers listed here on another page and se who has what in stock try to shop around for a little more you could bring home both.:D
    Get as much as you can while you can as prices only will go up.
    Good luck on your choice either way you will have a precision built rifle you can be proud to own.
     
  7. Spiggy

    Spiggy Member

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    plenty of it in my garage too!

    Finnish mosin unfortunately suffers like a mosin, it's awkward to work with sometimes... maybe it's just mine though

    go with both, start with the finn though, they're getting a bit tough to find
     
  8. U.S.SFC_RET

    U.S.SFC_RET Member

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    I am going to buy a Swiss M.1911 from a gun shop for the total of 120.00. I already have a Swiss K31.
    Finn Mosins are Beautiful and can shoot but K31s are easier to carry around, up into the tree stand... Truck..

    Ammunition.. Reload
     
  9. iamkris

    iamkris Member

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    I have both. I love both of them. The K31 is a better rifle in my opinion.

    The K31 has a better trigger, more handy and more refined. There is still surplus available (just ordered some from Samco) and reloading is abreeze...get brass from Graf's and you can reload using 308 Winchester specs. 2 MOA is a breeze with this rifle.

    The M39 has a great history (I love the idea of taking the "enemy's rifles, converting them and turning them on the aggressors). It is accurate with heavy ball but not as good as my K31. The trigger is good for a MN but not as good as a K31. The sights are good for a MN but not as good as a K31.

    Then again, you can buy both for less than $500...I don't see why this is a decision.
     
  10. DMK

    DMK Member

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    I have three M39s and five K31s. I agree with iamkris. Especially about the "get both" part. ;)

    If you can get surplus 7.62x54R, you can shoot the Finn all day long for pennies. The K31's GP11 7.5x55 surplus ammo is of much better quality than anything currently on the market in 7.62x54R, but it costs much more too. The K31 is much easier to scope.

    I'd love to see a side by side comparison of these two rifles with custom reloads. I think the only thing holding the M39 back from shooting as well as the K31 is ammo quality.
     
  11. brockj

    brockj Member

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    Another thing to consider, I beleive all the GP11 (swiss surplus) is non corrosive, which means those guns probably never fired corrosive,so bores *should* be better.

    Swiss will also be a little cheaper less than $200 compared to the m39 $250 +
     
  12. Ohio Rifleman

    Ohio Rifleman Member

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    I thought there wasn't cheap surplus 7.5 Swiss like there is for 7.62x54R. I thought you could only get match grade stuff, which is of course, pricey. If there is such a thing as cheap surplus 7.5 Swiss, I might have to get myself a K-31...
     
  13. silverlance

    silverlance Member

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    the problem is that reloading 7.5 is very hard to do.
     
  14. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    I've owned several of both types. The M-39 and K31 are similar rifles in heft, though the K31 actually punches a little harder with felt recoil. The 54R ammo is much easier to find, though the situation with 7.5 is getting better as more companies load it. However, 7.5 is almost certainly always going to be more expensive than 54R.

    As far as accuracy, the K31 ON AVERAGE will be more accurate than the M39 ON AVERAGE. The K31's were more precisely and consistently tuned. With GP-11 or similar loads they are nearly all tack drivers. The M39's tend to be more variable, and include both excellent and just good shooters. They also tend to prefer different types of ammo. Some M39's seem to be calibrated for light ball, others for heavy. But at the same time, the M39's are more tolerant of variation than the K-31. They're more precisely machined with closer tolerances than a Soviet 91/30, but not nearly as precise as the K-31. The K-31 is famous for leaving virtually no room for variation. If your ogive is even a little high the round won't chamber. Whereas the Finn rifles had to be able to accept a wide array of funky Russian ans Soviet loadings, as well as the D-166 ball.

    Personally, I opted for "neither" because I found both to be too bulky. I prefer the leaner lines of the M-91 Finn and the G1911 Schmidt-Rubin. Whatever platforms you prefer, there's something wonderful about being able to shoot either 54R and 7.5 depending on what you've got in stock.

    GP11 is the only ball ammo for the K31. It's been the only 7.5 Swiss ball ammo for ages. It also happens to be made to match grade quality levels, with a number of unique mofidications including a special waxy coating designed to keep the chamber from overheating. The Swiss spent more time and money to equip their front line soldiers than any military I know of. Their rifles were more accurate and better made than anything we have ever provided our own troops, even to the current day. The grunts were outfitted with what we would consider sniper quality rifles.

    ?? I'm not sure what you mean. The brass situation is getting much better than it was four or five years ago. Graf has a new batch in right now in fact. And it takes standard .308" bullets. Getting a load the rifle likes requires some precise tuning, but the good news is others have already done this and you can scan the Swiss forums to get the load info.
     
  15. Coronach

    Coronach Moderator Emeritus

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    There is no "cheap" Swiss surplus ammo for the K-31. That's because all Swiss surplus ammo is match ammo, because all Swiss ammo for the K-31 is match ammo. ;) I don't know about more recent designs, but the Swiss didn't do anything "cheap" for the K-31.

    On the plus side, the K-31 with surplus ammo will almost certainly outshoot any Mosin-Nagant with surplus ammo. Now, if you reload for the M-N, the gap will narrow. Of course, if you reload for the K-31, the price gap will also narrow.
    Well, reloading spent GP11 brass is not exactly fun, is what I've read, because it is Berdan primed. I have not heard that reloading boxer-primed brass is any more difficult than reloading any other rifle round. Now that there are a lot of K-31s in-country, more and more manufacturers are producing brass and ammo, so finding brass to reload should be getting easier.

    Get both. ;)

    Mike
     
  16. Ohio Rifleman

    Ohio Rifleman Member

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    I've seriously thought about getting a K-31, but the main thing that's deterred me is the expensive ammo. And I don't reload, nor do I have the finances to start doing so.
     
  17. DMK

    DMK Member

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    The Finns were very respectful of their weapons and better trained than other Mosin-Nagant users. Pitted bores are not that common with Finn weapons.
     
  18. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Get both, basically. I should add that form a collector's point of view all Finnish and all Swiss rifles are per se rare. The Finn M-39's were made in large numbers *FOR A FINN*, but that's still a tiny number compared with the east block nations. Plus there are more and more subdivisions of these rifles discovered all the time, esp. with the M39's. The K31's were extremely common a few years ago and I remember people posting that they'd never be worth more than $100. Well that's a good joke now. And M39's are getting more and more expensive as well. I remember balking at a late model '70 for $450, but now WGA sells them for more than that all the time. Now is the time to by both Swiss and Finnish rifles.
     
  19. jkingrph

    jkingrph Member

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    Only if you try to reload the Swiss army GP-11 which is all that is available as surplus. It is very high grade, almost match grade, but is Berdan primed, making depriming cases difficult, plus you must find Berdan primers. Not impossible, but not easy. A better solution is to get some standard brass( uses boxer Primers) from a source as Graf's, or get some of the Privi-Partisan ammo, shoot and reload normally. Any standard 30 cal bullet will work fine.
     
  20. Bullet Bob

    Bullet Bob Member

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    I've shot M39's, but own four K-31's, so I've made my choice. But, it's all good, really.
     
  21. Dr. Peter Venkman

    Dr. Peter Venkman Member

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    I'd say get both. You can pick up a K31 for about $150-200 from other owners and an M39 for about $250 depending on what you want. That's not that big of a price increase and you'd be getting two pieces of your collection that you want.

    That being said, both are going to be very accurate if you feed them the right stuff. The K31 loves the GP-11 surplus stuff. It was made with very tight quality control and it shows. GP-11 is rather expensive now and the best bet for accuracy would be to reload your own. I don't know how commercial ammunition fares in them.

    As for the M39, there is a lot of 7.62x54R floating around. M39s love a particular surplus though and that is Czech Silvertip. I have no problem punching out two inch groups at 100 yards aiming well below the target (the sights start at 1.5) with my M39 and the receiver is from 1896.

    Just get both. You won't regret either purchase. Whatever you do, try to get one that has minimal throat erosion and a good bore. That doesn't necessarily mean a loose bullet is a dead give away for an inaccurate rifle though; my M39 was counterbored though and you'd never know how accurate it would be until you shot it.

    M39 on the bottom:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  22. MinScout

    MinScout Member

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    I have an M39 Mosin, but I don't know anything about K31s. I think from a collector's standpoint, the Finnish Mosin has a richer history and has actually been used in combat. For me, that makes a difference. I'd go with the M39.
     
  23. Coronach

    Coronach Moderator Emeritus

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    Ohio Rifleman-

    This is what is going to happen. The prices of K31s are going to climb steadily. They already are. Eventually they will be a lot more expensive than almost any of the more common milsurps out there (Lee-Enfield, M-N, Mauser, M1903, etc) simply because there were a lot less of them made, and almost all of them were in great shape when they came to the USA. At some point you will be bitten by the K31 bug, because you're already interested in one now, and you'll then have the income to drop on ammo (either reloading or factory-made). You will look at the prices of K31s and wonder what brand of dope you were smoking when they were sub-$200 and you passed on them. Consider that Mauser K98s used to go for sub $100 for a great example, and Russian Capture clunkers are selling at Gunshows now for $250 and up. A pristine copy for a common variant will now run you several c-notes. Add in rarity and you're looking at a mortgage payment.

    OTOH, if you buy one now, you will have bought the rifle when it was cheap, and you'll be shooting it in the future, when ammo and/or components should be more reasonable (due to it becoming more popular in the USA). Best of both worlds.

    Mike, expert at spending other people's money. ;) (I should be a liberal!)
     
  24. iamkris

    iamkris Member

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    How? Boxer primed brass from Graf's, $25 dies from LEE. Then use 308 bullets and 308 Win load specs.
     
  25. M39SKY

    M39SKY Member

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    One deciding factor if you have both in front of you is which one have the better barrel/bore. It is extremely difficult to find "new" bore in K-31. Another one is the "feel" in your hands (if you are going to shoot instead of collect only). K-31 is easier and faster to load and cycle. It is also handier. On the other hand, I like the "feel" of the M39 stock, particularly the war-time ones (as opposed to post-war). It is just right for me. At the moment, I wouldn't base my decision on 7.62x54r milsurp ammo availability. While my rifles love Czech Silver tips and Polish Light Balls, they are nowhere to be found these days. Unless you have several cases of milsurp ammo stashed, handloading is the way to go. And that would make the ammo expense concern equal on both.
    I put 6x scout scope with Darrell Scout mounts on a K-31 and an M39. Whenever I go shooting I take them both. K-31 has a little edge in accuracy each time. I'd like to think that this is because I only shoot handloads on it while the Finn gets the Czech. Get both, I'd say.
     
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