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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
We have talked a lot in this forum about Mosin-Nagants in second world war and some discussion have been seen on the topic of Mosins in Vietnam.

Mosins in Korean war is little bit lesser known subject. The whole conflict seems to be more or less "forgotten" here in Finland and rest of Europe.

So tell me as much as you know. As far as I know, M91-30 and M44 carbine were used (along with pps43s, ppsh41s, avs36s, svts and of course japanese equipment) after the first year of war in masses when soviet military aid arrived.

What, when, by who, who sent, specialities characteristics, local tactics, equipment etc.

Pictures are always fascinating and welcome, especially taken from Korean and CCF side. I've found some pictures from the internet but those are taken from the UN side, mostly from US troops. Of course, because cameras were much more common on this side of the conflict.

-Wee
 

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I'm not saying is isn't true, but I've never seen any photos of SVT 38s, 40s, or AVS 36 rifles used in Korean Police Action. Plenty of photos of everything of late Soviet WW2 manufacture, including 14.5 PTRD, but no SVTs.
North Korean Army was intially armed by Soviet Union, but when PRC troops came across the river, they were armed with almost anything--Mausers, Mosin, Arisaka, captured US weapons, and Soviet sub guns, heavy DSK and maxims--but no photos of SVTs or AV36s.
If anyone has such a photo or a verifiable written reference to use of either weapon it would be good to see.
 

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Somewhere I have pictures I took at the War Museum in Seoul. There were lots of captured Mosin Nagant, Mauser and Arisaka rifles on display.
 

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Hello Wee,

Great question, and one close to my interest since my late grandfather was a navy corpsman with the marines in the Korean War. You should be able to get the British TV documentary done by Bruce Cumings and John Halliday: "Korea: The Unknown War." There was an accompanying book done for the documentary that is loaded with interesting photos, including some creepy "the commissar vanishes" altered photos from the communist side and carefully staged propaganda photos.
There was a guerrilla war in the south that saw many Japanese WWII weapons used.
The North Korean DPRK forces began the conflict in June 1950 with a high degree of USSR-supplied uniformity. The M44 and the M38 Mosin Nagants were frequently used alongside PPSh41s and other weapons from soviet inventory. M91/30s too. The T34 tank was a formidable weapon faced by US and ROK troops. The Chinese PLA had a much more heterogenous and assorted arsenal that included weapons from WWII, the Chinese Civil War, and communist supply. Thus everything from Japanese Arisakas and MGs, American Springfields and Enflields and SMGs and German Mausers from the KMT, British weapons from Hong Kong, Shanghai, etc., and Soviet-supplied arms. As the war progressed, the Chinese began to move towards greater standardization on Soviet lines. Both the North Koreans and the Chinese were tough enemies that could, and did, "go guerrilla" when the need arose.
Do you have the 1954 US Army circular about the Mosin-Nagant rifle? It is available online as a PDF file. There may be other online documents about the weapons faced by the UN troops.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'm not saying is isn't true, but I've never seen any photos of SVT 38s, 40s, or AVS 36 rifles used in Korean Police Action. Plenty of photos of everything of late Soviet WW2 manufacture, including 14.5 PTRD, but no SVTs.
...

but no photos of SVTs or AV36s.
If anyone has such a photo or a verifiable written reference to use of either weapon it would be good to see.
I've red from somewhere several years ago that some avs36s were encountered in Korea and svts were more also encountered there in larger quantities. At least the page http://www.rt66.com/~korteng/SmallArms/arms.htm lists svt40 in their category.

Svts were also later encountered in some african conflicts where soviets send them in thew 1950s and 60s.

I also think that UN captured svt40s were sold in US in 1950s with relatively low price of 20$, at least I think I've seen a marketing poster in some book but I could be easily wrong and confuse them to svts sold from finland to US surplus markets.

The problem for the Korean and Chinese pictures is that Cameras were were rare in the communist side and military officials controlled the taken pictures. The quality of the pictures is also much more worse than in the US/Un side which makes the recognizing of the different models more harder or impossible.

Mr. B - Thank you for the link, I've been looking for the page for several years. It's an excellent resource to study Korean War.

Daveccarlsson - Thank you for the info and interest. I start to look for US documents from Mosins. Maybe I should check for svt documents too, that might tell us where and when US troops have encountered svts in masses.
 

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A friend of mine that I shoot with every week was at the Chosin Reservoir when the Chinese entered the war. I'll ask him if he remembers the Chinese or North Koreans having any of the SVT's. He has a good memory, knows guns, and doesn't mind talking about it. There is a timbre to his voice that tells you how rough it was when he talks about two things - how cold it was, and seeing the waves of Chinese heading right for them when they came across the border.

He was wounded a couple of times the the frozen Chosin, once by a bayonet...wonder if that was an M44? I don't think he knows what kind of rifle it was as he was a little busy at the time.

Vern
 

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I am aware of maybe one and two's of what is said to be a SVT from Korea but nothing of fact. The AVS36 is a new one on me and would not have been a good choice for a smaller stature N. Korean soldier. The recoil is ferocious as you may know. Most of what I have seen and found in collections is the normal assortment of Soviet small arms of the Mosin's and sub guns. The NK's built their own version of both the PPsh41 and the PPS.
 

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Somewhere I have pictures I took at the War Museum in Seoul. There were lots of captured Mosin Nagant, Mauser and Arisaka rifles on display.
A number of the Mosins and Chinese Mausers entered the U.S. Surplus market
at some pint in the 50's-early 60's, too. I remember these being on sale @ around $10-$15 when I was a kid, in a large lot in a downtown Nashville Dept. store. Some of those pre-68 non-import marked Moisins without Finn markings could be Korean War rather than SCW.
 

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i remember talking to an Korean War pilot who flew a MIG for the Chinese last year. I pulled out an M91/30 from the gun cabinet and he started talking about how rare it is to find one of those in Korea.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Vic - Actually I'm not sure about the avs36s. Those were rare items and propably used up in the great patriotic war. It's just a memory that I've red somewhere and now it haunts me. It's more than likely that I'm wrong with this.

Anyway, I found these Mosin and Tokarev manuals from the internet after daveccarlsson tipped me:

http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/report/other/mosin.pdf
http://pdf.textfiles.com/manuals/FIREARMS/tokarov.pdf

Both of those were made in 1954. It just makes me wonder, were those made because US troops encountered both in masses during Korean war?

A friend of mine that I shoot with every week was at the Chosin Reservoir when the Chinese entered the war. I'll ask him if he remembers the Chinese or North Koreans having any of the SVT's. He has a good memory, knows guns, and doesn't mind talking about it. There is a timbre to his voice that tells you how rough it was when he talks about two things - how cold it was, and seeing the waves of Chinese heading right for them when they came across the border.

He was wounded a couple of times the the frozen Chosin, once by a bayonet...wonder if that was an M44? I don't think he knows what kind of rifle it was as he was a little busy at the time.

Vern
Go and ask him an little interview. Me and all the others are more than interested to hear from his experiences. Give him also my my greeting and salute him for me. :)

A number of the Mosins and Chinese Mausers entered the U.S. Surplus market
at some pint in the 50's-early 60's, too. I remember these being on sale @ around $10-$15 when I was a kid, in a large lot in a downtown Nashville Dept. store. Some of those pre-68 non-import marked Moisins without Finn markings could be Korean War rather than SCW.
That's interesting to know, you have good memory. Maybe somebody remembers the same or has other evidence.
 

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Still no proof of SVT use in Korea. SVT rifles from 1950's USA sales were all Finnish surplus.
Soviets published manuals on all rifles that would've still been in war reserve into the 50s? Why not? US Army published 1903 rifle manuals into the 1960's.
I saw SVT40s in use in Chech'yna war, by locals, so they are still out there, but use by N Korea is still questionable.
 

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That's interesting to know, you have good memory. Maybe somebody remembers the same or has other evidence.
I remember the Mausers were the Chang Kai Shek model, and one of the salesmen said not to shoot. The Mosins were 91/30's. There were a number of 91/30's in the Surplus market in the 60's, but the Chinese were around ca. 1960-61, as I recall, and they were at Cain-Sloan Dept. Store on Church St., in downtown Nashville. Friedman's Army Surplus had 91/30's in the late 60's, ca. 1965-69 for around $15 each. I recall them slathered in cosmoline. Friedmans had surplus from Interarms, so maybe you can figure where these might have been from.
 

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In captured NK documents and interviews with KPA POW's that I've seen, exclusively and mainly from 1950 respectively, I would say the 91/30 is mentioned more frequently than Moisin carbines, in tables of org, the rifle the prisoner or his unit was issued with, etc. Japanese rifles are mentioned in a few cases wrt to frontline units, for example the KPA 12th Division had mainly Type 99's early in the war, and second line units for example the 584th Railroad Engineer Regiment, reporting to the NK Ministry of Interior, had 'some heavy and light mg's and one Japanese rifle per man'. Captured US made (from ROKA and US) weapons are also mentioned.

As others mentioned, CPV units in winter 50-51 were seldom armed with Soviet weapons. I would say Type 38 was the most commonly mentioned rifle by Chinese POW's in that period, who often provided the TO&E of their infantry company as they recalled it.

The SVT isn't mentioned in any such documents I've seen for that period. But, later on perhaps it was encountered (or perhaps it was encountered early, but just doesn't happen to be mentioned in lots of such documents...).

Joe
 

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Chinese marked 91/30

I have a duffle-cut 1943 Izhevsk 91/30 with Chinese characters scratched in the butt stock that, if I recall correctly, mean some police prefecture in the south west (?) of China. In the Japanese board we had some wild speculation as to how it arrived here from Korea or Vietnam....

DB
 

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Neat rifle there!

On a related note, does anyone know if during the French Indochina war in Vietnam, 1946-1954, if the Viet Minh had Mosin-Nagants from the Chinese?
Or are the T53s and M44s only from the US Vietnam War period?

I know the Chinese communists supplied the Viet Minh with lots of equipment, including Chinese civil war ex-KMT and Korean-war captured American artillery, but what about small arms?
 

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In captured NK documents and interviews with KPA POW's that I've seen, exclusively and mainly from 1950 respectively, I would say the 91/30 is mentioned more frequently than Moisin carbines, in tables of org, the rifle the prisoner or his unit was issued with, etc. Japanese rifles are mentioned in a few cases wrt to frontline units, for example the KPA 12th Division had mainly Type 99's early in the war, and second line units for example the 584th Railroad Engineer Regiment, reporting to the NK Ministry of Interior, had 'some heavy and light mg's and one Japanese rifle per man'. Captured US made (from ROKA and US) weapons are also mentioned.
Did the 12th keep their Japanese hardware? Also, were Mosin carbines used a all? I recall seeing a picture of NK weapons captured during the fighting at the Pusan Perimeter. A M44 carbine and a Type 99 were present.

As others mentioned, CPV units in winter 50-51 were seldom armed with Soviet weapons. I would say Type 38 was the most commonly mentioned rifle by Chinese POW's in that period, who often provided the TO&E of their infantry company as they recalled it.
Any Soviet weapons at all in the CPV/PLA units of 1950-early 1951? Also, what were the other more common rifles in CPV/PLA use?
 

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can't get spell check to work either?

Hi Wee

In a similar tone as Vernz post, I know of a US Army 7th div vet who should write a book. I met him at a military show a maybe 10 years ago with his son. His son is a high power shooting buddy of mine. He is also friend of a friend who was a 25th Div vet in also in Korea. If my memory serves me right Chet joined the Army at the very end of WW2 and may have seen action on Okie. Can't say for sure. He bacame a boxer for the army doing what ever boxers do, strange mos? He was a scrawny/wirey guy, not very big or tall. 10 yeas ago he looked like he could still kick butt. He loved bar room brawls when he was young and don't think he ever really retired from those activities if it came his way. He was and my guess still is a tough SOB. You would know if you met Chet even if you didn't catch his name. You can not talk with him without him bringing up how the history books are bull sheet about the Chosin Resivor. The Army {thank you Gen. Mc Aurther} had sent 3 {regiments?} of the 7th up to the Chinese border in fall of the year. They were not equiped for winter at all. Summer uniforms, no winter boots ect. They were not happy as they were stretched pretty thin and the supply line was pretty iffy. The Marines agreed with the grunts and dragged there feet following the army up there. But the Marines planned a little ahead and were better eqiuped for the coming winter and planned ahead for most necessary supply's. When the cold hit the Army guys were hurting pretty bad because of the poor planning and lack of proper supplies. Chet claims a few of his men crossed iinto China across the river just to say they'd been there. When the China entered the war they about overran the army units who were in front of the 1st Marine division. One unit was over run and had very few survivors. They tried to retreat back to the Marine lines, but were ambushed. If they didn't cross the frozen resivor they probably didn't make it out. The army units fought like crazy just to make it back to the Marine lines. Chet is still upset that there is so very little history written about the 7ths ordeal in the Chosin Resivor chronicals. This is not to take anything away from the USMC history, but the Marines got a fair warning of what was happening as they could see all hell breaking loose as the Army units got hit by surprise. What a horrible place to be for anybody. I read a little about it from a Marines biograpy who felt it necessary to mention the 7ths plight during this time. Old Mac was not loved by everybody that is for sure. This thread by me is probably full of holes as far as detailed accuracy goes. I do not have the book I read and am going by memory of both the book and discussions with Chet.

I think it is almost out of most Americans ability to fathom how bad Korea was for those there. In a short 2.5-3 year period we had as many causulaties as in 12 years in Viet Nam. I remember the weekly body counts during Viet Nam during the 66-69 when we were loosing so many troops {not to mention the non fatal casualities}. To loose over 50,000 troops in such a short period of time is incrediable. Not since the civl war {in the US} did we suffer so many losses in such short order. Maybe I should'nt make so many claims as to losses. I know WW2 had some pretty horrific losses too for all involved. To read about history and collect military rifles and such is fun and interesting. Living the same history we study and collect is a different story. All my uncles were WW2 vets or Korea. Some would talk about it, some wouldn't. My uncle Art was in 101st AB went over in a glider on D-Day, pretty quiet man. My uncle Bob is still alive and was a paratrooper in Korea. He jumped with them looking for the POWs that were executed by N. Koreans. He is pretty quiet too. This was is forgotten by many, but not all.

Get into the history of other countriies and you realize just how cruel things can get. The liberals who seem to be so dissatisfied with what we have here and want socialism should be careful what they ask for.

John.
 

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Korean War and the Mosin etc etc

The Korean War has gotten zero attention and as a Viet Nam , Iraq and Afghan vet, I really am disappointed that the Korean Vets got the shaft so badly. They never complained either. Just not fair and its just not right. Damned Criminal in my opinion.

As to Mosins and the Korean War: THis forum and collectors are focused on two things: THE Finns and their war against Russians (GO FINNS !!!) and the Russians vs. the Germans on the Eastern Front. Well, certainly those are worth focus but for us Americans, we faced the Mosins the first time in great numbers in Korea and later in Viet Nam (to a limited degree). As Americans, we ought to put a bit more focus on the Mosin in Korea and that part of the rifles history.

Lastly, lets not forget the Mosin is the US RIFLE MODEL 1916 for a reason and if you do not know why, you need to get on the ground now and give us all 100 push ups and go hide in the corner. Our Army and some naval personnel used that rifle in our expeditions to Russian in WWI. I saw pictures of our Infantry and Naval personnel carrying these rifles in Russian that I found at the Center of Military History in Carlisle Barracks, Pa when I was a student at the war college there.

The Mosin has a history of fighting with us and against us.

In closing, I spent 3 years in Korea in the mid 90's and got to see a ton of the real estate we fought on. That was no cake walk for the Infantryman. No cake walk for anyone on the ground and the weather was horrible. That this war and our soldiers/ marines that fought in it got so little recognition is a sad chapter in the history of the United States of America. That a few of you give a damn about it today is wonderful to see.

Korea : Helluva Fight.
 
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