During the 'patriotic war' the soviets built a LOT of sniper rifles. I can't answer for the Soviets, but the Russians are not stupid and they knew every shot that hit an important target was better than ten thousand rounds hitting dirt.
For some reason the soviet battle doctrine changed, or Dragunov rifles were adopted, or maybe the vodka ran too heavy one year, and many of these rifles were converted back into infantry weapons. The optics were removed and the mounting holes had plugs installed. These plugs were welded in and the welds ground off on the outside of the receiver. This didn't happen to all the snipers, and they were still turning up in battle right through the Vietnam war, and even today in Afghanistan.
The first clue are barrel markings. In this case, a 'CH' on the barrel shank which shows it to originally be a Tula made sniper rifle. Seeing that, opening the bolt reveals the final proof. Inside the left hand side of the receiver are found several screws visible in the bolt lug run. Looking on the outside of the receiver, no screws will be found. These are the 'plugs' installed in the mounting bolt holes and welded in place. The welds were rather roughly ground off, and the rifle refinished and restored to infantry standards. The position of the welded plugs shown here show this was a PU series sniper rifle, the most common type.
Often the ex-sniper Mosin's will have the best triggers of the breed, and the best accuracy of the Soviet 91/30's. This particular rifle has a decent trigger and will easily hold 2" groups at 100 yards using com-bloc military surplus 7.62x54 ammunition with the lighter bullets. Using the heavy bullet ammo, the groups open an inch more. Perhaps with a scope mounted, instead of the rough sights, it might show even better accuracy.
Check your Mosin rifle.... there might be a deeper story there than you know!
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