If you lived in central Utah, you could head over to the American Fork Big 5 and check out the two nicest Mosin Nagant 91/30's I've ever seen. Perhaps you know somebody who is of good moral character; someone manly and disgustingly free of vice or human failings Why don't you get him hooked on old Russian rifles?
The world can always use another Cruffler!
About the rifles: The first is a pre-war assembled Tula with all matching numbers, a straight, very clean stock with pronounced figuring for birch. The cartouches indicate it may have finished service in Bulgaria. The crown appears to be original and not rearsenalled.
The bore is... perfect. Not "clean with service wear" but absolutely crisp, bright, and clean.
The second rifle has just as clean a bore and it, too, appears to have its original crown. It is a 1943 manufacture featuring the round, low wall receiver and was produced at Izhvesk. The serial is six numbers, vice the more usual two Cyrillic characters followed by four numbers. The wartime production stock has two repairs - one on the left side of the receiver with the second at the forward edge of the magazine well. IMO the first repair suggests that the stock, at least, was once a part of a sniper rig. The wood is clean and well figured, and remarkable free of dings. The stock repairs are so well executed as to almost disappear under the arsenal shellac treatment.
And here's the kicker: the second rifle's bolt and trigger are about what my Remington 700BDL was like before I slicked it up. If you have spent much time around Mosins, you would know that the bolts are kind of hit and miss at best.
Hmmmm. I already own four 91/30's. As I type this we are waiting for the rain to turn to snow. The met boys say six to eight inches by tomorrow and the streets of Utah County are filled with Christmas shopping zombies.
Oy. The OTL doesn't know rifle beyond "Bang OUCH"... but she knows art when she sees it.
Wish me luck.