The classic Mosin Rifle has lines in all the wrong places. No offense to Sergei Mosin, but the rifle bearing his name is far from pretty. This isn’t looking at the rifle from a modern perspective. Look at over rifles of the time, the Lee Enfield Mark 4, and the Springfield 1903, both beautiful rifles with a classic look. The Mosin Nagant follows the Eastern European tradition of function following form, and the rifle was made to kill capitalism, not look pretty.
The Mosin Nagant stock is made from wood, covered in lacquer. This wood quality can vary from country to country and vary even more between how the rifle was treated through its long life. Unissued variants often look better than wartime examples, and the T53, a Chinese copy, is known for its terrible wooden stocks. I’ve seen some gorgeous examples of Mosin wood, and nice wood always makes do a double-take. Unfortunately, these Mosins are exceptions, not the rule. Even unissued variants often feature a rough wooden stock, ding, dented, and cracked, and often covered unevenly in some kind of lacquer.
As a new Mosin owner, it is perfectly acceptable to change your stock, add a scope, or do a variety of other customizations. My only caveat, ensure your Mosin Nagant is not a rare model, and a Google search can do that quite easily. If you have Joseph Stalin’s Mosin, you’ll regret changing the configuration. Mosin Nagants are not rare rifles in general, so feel free to go a little crazy with it. If you are looking to change the stock there are plenty of options, but it’s always a good idea to keep your original stock as well.
Why Change the Mosin Nagant Stock?
I’ve mentioned Mosin Stocks tend to be quite ugly, so basic appearance levels are one good reason. Another is if you plan to field the Mosin, use for hunting or hiking, you may want to protect the original wood from the elements. Since most Mosin Nagant stocks are drop-in they require no permanent modifications. Maybe you have a beautiful wood stock and you want to preserve it?
Those classic wooden stocks are also quite heavy and cumbersome. These stocks are well built and are heavy for a purpose. They were designed in a time where hand to hand combat with a rifle was a real possibility. The heavier the weapon, the better it could bash and strike with. Fortunately, you’re not bayoneting Bambi, or your paper targets, so cutting weight is an advantage in most situations.
Mosin Nagant stocks were built for troops that are wearing heavy Russian uniforms, made for fighting in those cold, wet, Russian winters. This resulted in the stock having a shorter length of pull than most people are used to. Those thick Russian jackets necessitated this short length of pull. Upgrading your stock will more than likely increase the length of pull, and make the weapon more comfortable to shoot. While we are focusing on the backside of the weapon take a moment and look at the end of the buttstock. What do you see?
A thick piece of steel, that’s what you should see. The Mosin is no kitty cat; it fires a powerful round that does generate a fair bit of recoil. Do you know what sucks at absorbing recoil? Steel. So replacing the stock, and getting rid of that piece of steel, is a nice jump in comfort. A more comfortable rifle means you are more likely to practice, therefore building your skills, and making you a better shooter.
Let’s see, if you are looking to scope your Mosin a modern stock made from polymer, rubber, etc makes it much easier to do so. Modifying these materials is much easier than modifying wood. Certain stock companies have paired with optic mount companies to make mounting an optic much easier. Also, most Mosins aren’t friendly to modern slings, but these modern stocks are.
Slings are handy items, and so are a number of different accessories. This includes mounting bipods. This is nearly impossible when it comes to standard Mosin Nagants, but adding adapters or even Picatinny rails makes it possible to mount a good bipod without issue.
Mosin Stock Options
So we’ve covered the reasons why to change your stock, and what you can gain from it. Talking about all that is nice, but I wouldn’t leave you hanging without providing a few examples. The models I’ve chosen have a good reputation and do fulfill a large variety of the reasons we listed for changing your stock in the first place.
Mosin Archangel Stock
The Archangel is probably the coolest looking Mosin stock on the market. The Archangel stock completely changes the rifle from a blast from the past to something much more futuristic, and certainly more sniper esque. The Archangel is made polymer and is impact resistant. The stock is a drop-in type, meaning no permanents mods are necessary for your rifle. The stock even works with bayonets. It’s compatible with most Mosin variants, including the T53 and M44 carbines.
The Archangel also makes mounting a scope much, much easier. Another company called Rock Solid mounts developed an excellent mount when using the Archangel stock. The stock also adds an awesome little feature to your Mosin, the ability to use removable magazines. Pro Mag even produces 10 round magazines for the Mosin Nagant. With these who cares if you can’t use stripper clips when rocking a scope, swapping mags is much faster.
You can also add sections of rail to attach additional accessories and the buttstock is brilliant. The stock adjusts for the length of pull and offers a cheek riser. This cheek riser allows you to maintain a good cheek weld in a variety of positions. The stock weighs in under four pounds and comes in a variety of different colors as well. The Archangel is definitely the King of Cool when it comes to Mosin Stocks.
Mosin ATI Monte Carlo Stock
Advanced Technologies Monte Carlo stock is a simple option for a simple rifle. The Monte Carlo name seems somewhat exotic and out there, in reality, a Monte Carlo stock is quite conventional. Monte Carlo stocks shave a lot of weight off of a weapon but shortening the stock underneath the barrel, and completely removing the wood from above the barrel. The Monte Carlo stock is much lighter than a wartime stock and is often known as sporter stocks.
The ATI Monte Carlo stock is made from a chemical, moisture, and impact resistant polymer that is lighter, and ultimately more durable than wooden stocks. The Monte Carlo stock from ATI also has their Scorpion recoil pad that reduces that recoil fueled pain from that old school metal butt plate. The ATI stock has a raised cheekpiece that is much friendlier when using a scope and is simply more comfortable in any shooting situation.
The ATI Monte Carlo stock gives the Mosin Nagant a sleeker appearance, less mil surp like, and gives the rifle a more modern, sporting look. The stock is drop-in and doesn’t require permanent modification, and has a very simple installation process. The stock itself is capable of fitting a wide variety of different Mosin models and does fit most.
Boyd’s Hardwood stocks
If you are partial to the wood appearance of the Mosin Nagant, but you want something a little more modern, and a little less banged up you can’t go wrong with wood stocks made by Boyd’s. Boyd’s hardwood stocks vary greatly in style and color, as well as the ability to choose left or right handed stocks.
My personal favorite is the Featherweight Thumbhole Mosin stock. The stock is quite light but is still built to last. The thumbhole stock gives the user a little more control and comfort over the weapon. The stock brings the length of pull to standard rifle length, as well as the addition of a half inch thick recoil pad. Installation is simple and is a drop-in style, so no permanent modification is needed.
The stock is available in five different colors, and even though the stock is made from wood, it is sealed against the elements. Outside of the thumb hole style there are options for most Mosins and are quite affordable for the quality and appearance you are getting. These stocks keep the classic lines in place, but the variety of colors available allows yours to be unique.
Be Unique and Customize
Of the best things about buying a Mosin Nagant is the ability to customize the rifle. An enthusiast can take a hundred and fifty dollar rifle and turn it into nearly anything they desire, as long as it’s chambered in 7.62 x 54R. You can mix, match, and morph your Mosin Nagant into nearly anything. Being able to swap the stocks out instantly is a major advantage to the Mosin Nagant, and allows the most customization possible.
Check out the full list of the most popular Mosin Modifications.
Also, be sure to read about the must have Mosin accessories.