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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Did the Finnish armourers do anything special to the SVT-40s they captured? I just wonder if they did anything to assure accuracy or by that time did they simply see if they were safe safe to shoot, stamp and then get them to the front lines? It seems the Bolt guns all had some attention paid to their accuracy, just curious if the same attention was paid to the SVTs.

Mine has a .313. bore so I really wouldn't expect much accuracy from it. Even if it had been tested for accuracy, that probably doesn't mean anything now. The Kovrov I stupidly traded had a .310 bore.
 

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Did the Finnish armourers do anything special to the SVT-40s they captured? I just wonder if they did anything to assure accuracy or by that time did they simply see if they were safe safe to shoot, stamp and then get them to the front lines? It seems the Bolt guns all had some attention paid to their accuracy, just curious if the same attention was paid to the SVTs.
What is known suggests that as a rule Finnish armorers basically did nothing to captured AVS-36, SVT-38, SVT-40 and AVT-40 during World War 2. Finnish soldiers were taking captured rifles of these types to their own use for obvious reasons (most of them were equipped with old bolt-action rifles, so captured self-loading rifle gave them more firepower -> better chance of survival), once these captured rifles broken down (and a huge number of them did) they got sent repair shop or gun depot, but Finnish Army repair shops & gun depots just storaged them instead of making repairs (probably due to lack of spare parts & manpower?), until those rifles that were too severely damaged got scrapped in year 1945. Presumably once they got scrapped, still usable parts were removed and stored, since in early - mid 1950's Finnish gun depots repaired thousands of SVT-38 and SVT-40, which then got issued to Finnish Army along those rifles that had survived the war in usable condition. It is safe to assume that Finnish gun depots checked all captured SVT-40 rifles at that time before they were issued. BUT: If you are wondering about safety of the rifle, it is worth noting that Finnish Army checked them the last time about 60 years ago, since they were declared obsolete in year 1958 and grand majority of them were sold off (and exported to United States) circa 1959 - 1961. Hence a lot may have happened to a individual rifle since.

There are two Finnish-made changes known for SVT-40 rifles, they appear only in some of the Finnish-issued rifles, not in all of them:
1. Added 2.0 gas setting (possibly an attempt to get the rifle run more reliably with Finnish standard-issue ammo, which had brass cases and 200-grain D166 FMJBT-bullets).
2. Operating rod parts permanently attached to one another.

Finnish military did not make any real changes geared towards improving shooting accuracy of existing self-loading Tokarev rifles, but there were some Finnish projects for SVT-40 based rifles. The likely reason for this is that the actual list of changes needed to make SVT-38 or SVT-40 to achieve Finnish shooting accuracy requirements was so extensive, that it was basically easier to built a totally new rifle based on the Soviet design than try to modify the existing rifle. The first of these projects started with testing that Sako did for captured SVT-38 rifle in year 1940 and TaPaKo-prototype based to it built later that same year. Sako also built SVT-40 based prototype built for Finnish military circa 1955 - 1957, but Finnish military abandoned the project after deciding to with AK-47 type assault rifle in circa 1957 - 1958.

You can find translation about Sako's test report and info about TaPaKo-prototype on my website:
http://www.jaegerplatoon.net/RIFLES4.htm#762KIV40

Sako's year 1956 prototype seems likely to be based to ideas already used in TaPaKo-prototype, but it has SVT-40 receiver, no muzzle brake of any kind and front sight originating from rifle m/28-30.

Earlier thread about SVT-40 in Finnish use:
http://forums.gunboards.com/showthread.php?469241-Finn-captured-svt-40-What-did-the-finn-do-with-them

Jarkko
 

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What is known suggests that as a rule Finnish armorers basically did nothing to captured AVS-36, SVT-38, SVT-40 and AVT-40 during World War 2. Finnish soldiers were taking captured rifles of these types to their own use for obvious reasons (most of them were equipped with old bolt-action rifles, so captured self-loading rifle gave them more firepower -> better chance of survival), once these captured rifles broken down (and a huge number of them did) they got sent repair shop or gun depot, but Finnish Army repair shops & gun depots just storaged them instead of making repairs (probably due to lack of spare parts & manpower?), until those rifles that were too severely damaged got scrapped in year 1945.
An excerpt from the diary of 1. Aseenkorjauskomppania (literally "1st Weapon Repair Company") operating in the Rukajärvi Front during the Continuation War. All of the four semi-automatic rifles listed below were dissembled for general maintenance ("yleiskorjaus") along with some additional repairs. The first rifle had its sights refitted, the second its firing pin spring, the third its stock & firing pin and the last also its firing pin replaced.

 

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An excerpt from the diary of 1. Aseenkorjauskomppania (literally "1st Weapon Repair Company") operating in the Rukajärvi Front during the Continuation War. All of the four semi-automatic rifles listed below were dissembled for general maintenance ("yleiskorjaus") along with some additional repairs. The first rifle had its sights refitted, the second its firing pin spring, the third its stock & firing pin and the last also its firing pin replaced.
Damn - that is new for me. Any idea how common these repairs were? In other words - could this be an isolated case or was this common practice? My old info for no wartime repairs is from Palokangas.

BTW: Iskurin jousi could also be a hammer spring in those cases, since the design has a hammer (in trigger group) and a firing pin (iskuripiikki)?

Jarkko
 

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Any idea how common these repairs were? In other words - could this be an isolated case or was this common practice?
The document I quoted list thousands of rifles repaired over a period of two years and the repairs made to semi-automatic rifles seems to have been a common practice in this front.

My old info for no wartime repairs is from Palokangas.
Palokangas can be said to be "lazy" when it comes to quoting sources. He often uses secondary sources and interviews made decades after the event instead of primary sources. This can be seen also in his new book "Itsenäisen Suomen jalkaväen raskaat aseet ja ryhmäaseet".
 

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The document I quoted list thousands of rifles repaired over a period of two years and the repairs made to semi-automatic rifles seems to have been a common practice in this front.

Palokangas can be said to be "lazy" when it comes to quoting sources. He often uses secondary sources and interviews made decades after the event instead of primary sources. This can be seen also in his new book "Itsenäisen Suomen jalkaväen raskaat aseet ja ryhmäaseet".
So it seems likely that he never checked documents from weapon repair companies, or at least not all of them. IMHO that latest book of his is beyond lazy, being almost worthless due to massive number of typos, mistakes and errors of all possible kind, but that goes somewhat off-topic. His "Small Arms in Finland 1918 - 1988" is commonly considered to be solid work with very few real errors in it.

If this info from diary (sotapäiväkirja), they should be available online - which would now make it rather checking what other Weapons Repair Companies reported.

Jarkko
 

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Mangrove, so I take it that a large number of captured Russian SVTs' were refitted at the front by repair companies. This is what I was always lead to believe. The Finnish captured SVTs seem be highly desired in U.S. war time rifle collections. You don't see that many at military shows like you use to see.
Thanks,
Joe
 

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Parts were made by small shops as well to be used as replacements.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I don't know how scarce they (Finn captures) are but HERE in West Texas I have only seen this one. I'm sure there are some around but they are hidden in closets. I'm lucky to see a Russian rifle of any sort at a gun show out here. They just weren't collected much out here for some reason. Nothing like when I live in Houston.
 

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The only Finnish captured indication on my non-import-marked SVT-40 is the replaced gas nut with larger settings. I've read that this was done due to improve function in sub-zero conditions and also due to differences in the Finnish ammunition. Nothing matches on the rifle, and bolt is "in the white" and the wood has a typical Finnish "oiled" appearance. No shellac or other finish on the stock. It's also got an SVT-38 magazine and a well-worn original early pattern leather sling.
 
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