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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
The 1944 Tula survey is back! I am collecting information on all Mosins made at Tula in 1944. My primary interest is in the serial number, but I am also making note of which prefixes are observed on recycled low-wall and hex receivers.

A clear picture of the barrel shank posted here is the best way to report your number (as it allows me to see the font used in 1944 and “No”), but I appreciate any information you can give me (don't forget to mention what model it is!). I made of list of Cyrillic characters and assigned them a number if you can't post a photo, or you should be able to copy and paste these characters:

А Б В Г Д Е Ж З И К Л М Н О П Р С Т У Ф Х Ц Ч Ш Щ Э Ю Я

Contributors to the survey on the old board were as follows: rocker98, POB, Springbank, Shyquestor, royke, Denny, mrkimball, The Fall Guy, bullseye, slimedog, kh, 7.62x54r, MarkRKelley, USMCsean, lite-box, GoShoot, jimminardi, capnduane, Dave in VA, UNBLVR, ryg, LANT, capt ron, briarcliff, deerhunter71, Coogan, Claven2, Galaxieman, possumdog, akd, tjm22shot, tojones, learjet60, FinnCollector, El Capitan, toolie, ElSnapitan, N8PGP, gonefission, riotsquad, Moe, ThreeJs, Ken in Iowa, and gunhorde. If I’ve missed your name, let me know and I’ll add you to the list!


Below is a list of the serial numbers that I have observed as of 9/21/2008
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Data Summary

A quick summary of the data on the carbines so far:

1944 Tula M38s
54 reported
19 prefixes
High S/N = 1593

1944 Tula M44s
178 reported (not counting two with restamped serial numbers and two "YY" trainers)
62 prefixes (not counting the "YY" trainers)
High S/N = 1557


Interesting notes on the data so far (M38s and M44s only):

-The most common prefixes on M44s so far are KГ and 3K (8 reported each).

-The most common prefix on M38s so far is PГ (7 reported).

-Hex/lowwall receivers found on M44s in all prefix blocks (i.e. Ж_, 3_, И_, Л_, E_, M_, etc.)

-Hex/lowwall receivers found on M38s in prefix blocks П_ and P_, but these two blocks account for 35 of the 50 Tula M38s reported.

-72 unique prefixes.

-4 prefixes found on both M44s and M38s (ЖР, ИE, ИC, PM).

-2 M44s reported with obviously restamped serial numbers.

-71.6% of the carbines reported so far have serial numbers less than 1000.
-77.3% have serial numbers less than 1100.
-88.7% have serial numbers less than 1200.
-92.8% have serial numbers less than 1300.
-94.8% have serial numbers less than 1400.
-96.9% have serial numbers less than 1500.
-100% have serial numbers less than 1600.

-Only two series of M44s (M_ and Ю_) and two series of M38s (E_ and P_) have reported serial numbers greater than 1300.


Below is a graph showing the numerical part of the serial and a block of the prefixes showing which ones are known. (Updated as of 9/21/2008)
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Theories And Observations

Let me start off by saying that I am not an expert in Mosin production, so if I am error on anything, please feel free to correct me.

My theories so far (these only apply to production at Tula in 1944):

1. Each individual serial number "block" represents a single days production. I base this off the fact that no carbine reported has a serial number over 1593 (with the exception of ones with restamped serial numbers – see below).

2. The first letter in the prefix was held constant and the second letter was changed. This data is based off of observed serial numbers and variations of the font in "1944" and "No" (more on this below). I don’t know if there was any logic behind this or not: hopefully more data will pin this down better.

3. M38 production at Tula ceased before the start of M44 production. Again, this is based off the font in "1944" and "No" - Tula M38s and M44s do not have the same fonts. There appear to be at least four unique variations - I've attached pictures of them below.

4. Old round and hex receivers were used randomly throughout Tula production in 1944. Without counting them all, I would say that at least half of the two-letter prefixes have at least one old receiver among them, and of the different blocks, only one (M_) does not have old receivers reported to date.

5. Based off of the data so far, I would guess that total M44 production at Tula in 1944 was between 90,000 and 100,000. Yes, I know 100k is the number commonly thrown around, but the data seems to support it:

- Adding up the high numbers of each series of M44's, the data shows a minimum of ~51k made. Assuming that the average high number was half of the total high number, you'd multiply that 51k by 2 and get 102k.

- Taking the number of prefixes times the high serial number of the M44's (61×1557) = ~95k made. I'm sure there are still many prefixes out there that are missing, but the majority of the prefixes (around 75%) have high serial numbers less than 1300. Assuming that the high numbers cancel out the missing prefix blocks, the total production of M44's would be in the 90k-100k range.

- The average M44 serial number reported so far is 629. Again, assuming that the average is roughly half of the maximum, that would be around 1300 carbines with each prefix. I don't have the data to back it up yet, but I believe that there were a total of around 70 unique prefix blocks. So, 70×1300 = ~91k.

- Along the same lines, I would estimate total M38 production at Tula in 1944 somewhere between 25,000 and 30,000 , based on the data so far.

Other things I've noticed (not necessarily limited to 1944 Tulas):

1. There are Mosins out there with dates restamped on the receiver. I have seen photos of a packing slip from a crate of M44s where the contents are listed by date and serial. It seems that if the date was illegible, it was restamped. I have observed at least one 1944 Izhevsk M44 and a 91/30 with restamped dates as well.

2. There are carbines where the entire serial number was restamped. I have no idea on these, but they are fairly uncommon: I have seen one and heard of another. I would assume that this is not unique to Tula M44s, but haven’t seen it on any other year/model yet.
 

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Tula M44

Is this what you're looking for? Rear tang is marked with double star and 38 (got tired of trying to determine how to post multiple attachments).
 

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Discussion Starter #5
That's exactly what I'm looking for fred_ex - it's even a prefix that I didn't have before. Thanks for the photo and the contribution!
 

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1944 Tula 91/30

Here is a '44 Tula 91/30 that has always had me perplexed. You can see that it has been scrubbed. It has some unusual markings. To the left of the star you can see the remains of some circular inspection mark and to the right you can see the remains of a "CH" sniper mark but it it was never tapped for a mount. Underneath the base of the "C" stamp, you can see the crossed Tula hammer inspection mark that the "C" was stamped over. It appears it may have been selected as a sniper at some time after its initial factory inspection. By the way, the bore on this rifle is pristine. I don't think a round had ever gone through it before I got it. The right side has a strange set of markings too that I have seen on a few other rifles.
 

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Maybe a typo?

You've got "407" (plus the 2-character prefix) listed in the M-44 table, but my M-44 is "1407" - In case they are two different rifles I'm posting the photo. You've already got the rest of my rifles and carbines listed. Thanks for your efforts!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Radom1935 - Thanks for the pictures.

Mosinmeister - No clue on the 91/30, but I appreciate the contribution. That's an excellent photo of the date - it'll help compare it with the fonts on the M38s and M44s.

Gunhorde - Not a typo, just an odd coincidence. I have a photo of "407" running around here somewhere. I actually checked that myself before posting the new data.

Again, thanks to everyone for their contributions!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
knightcrawler, turfmn, mokan57, glee, fred ex & kevin917z -
Thanks for the contributions. I'll try to get survey updated in the next week or so.
 

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1944 Tula M44 Serial number: Kr 414

Round Izhevsk receiver made in 42 with a 44 tula over stamp on the tang.

Hey, I just noticed your list shows someone has Kr 413!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Gunny71,
Congrats - that is the lowest number reported so far. Of course, that doesn't place it in any sort of timeframe (other than very early in that day's production perhaps), but it's a neat one anyway.

28 mosin,
Thanks for the contribution and the note on the receiver. Kr413 is actually in my personal collection - it's built on a hex receiver, so that helps prove there is no order to hex and round receivers (in that same prefix block, 114 and 283 are round receivers and 878 is a hex receiver). So, now you know who to send yours to once you're bored with it!

Thanks again for contributions.
 
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