M44 headspace

Porter

Member
Jun 3, 2008
61
16
Houston
I picked up a Mosin Nagant M44 at the last gunshow here in Houston. The rifle is in excellent condition, and I'll post pictures later tonight. I have definitely got to pick up more MN's while the prices are still good.

Now for the question.

I, of course, want to check the headspace before I go shoot for the first time. Am I better off buying my own gauges, or having a gunsmith do the inspection? I've called several smiths over the past two days, and they are all backlogged with rifles damaged during Ike. I really don't want to wait a month for something that should only take a couple of hours at the extreme. Any advice guys?
 

Charley

Active Member
Aug 7, 2008
452
28
San Antonio
Depends on how many you are going to check. A Clymer No-Go is $26 from Brownell's, a PTG No-Go is $27.99 from Midway. Do you want to spend the money? Nominal rim thickness is .065 inches, don't quote me, but I believe headspace tange is around .066 to .070. You can measure a cartridge rim, then stack shim stock on it to get close to a gage.

FWIW, I've never bothered measuring my MNs, after the first 4 or five, and I have (and shoot) about 20 or so. Just haven't seen the varience in them.
I know Century gages their rifles sold as shooters, and many wholesalers buy from them.
 

phatcyclist

Active Member
Feb 22, 2008
882
36
Austin, TX
I bought a very haggard M44 and tried to get it headspaced. No gunsmith in town had the gauges, so I just took it to the range and fired it. The bore was in really good shape, so I knew it probably wasn't a problem. All my friends have Mosins and I have yet to see one with a bad headspace problem.
 

Porter

Member
Jun 3, 2008
61
16
Houston
My paranoia got the best of me (I'd rather not be the one unlucky bastard who's gun kabooms), and I purchased Clymer's go and no-go gauges from Brownell's last week. They arrived on Monday, and after getting a decent vice, I was able to remove the extractor last night so I could actually use them. The rifle passed with flying colors. Looks like I'm off to the range this weekend. All I've got to shoot right now is some surplus Bulgarian heavy ball. Anyone know a good chiropractor?
 

kville79

Active Member
May 24, 2008
443
16
Austin
LOL when your shoulder gets thrown out, just switch sides.... I think they ammo that kicked the most, that I've fired, was the S&B soft point.
 

Charley

Active Member
Aug 7, 2008
452
28
San Antonio
Fpr a safety check, you don't really need the GO Gauge. If the headspace is bellow minimum, you can't chamber a round anyway. You don't want it to close on a NOGO or Field Gauge.
I use Go Gauges strictly for setting headspace when chambering.
 

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