“How much does my gun cost?” is one of the most common question about Russian guns – especially MTs (a.k.a MC, a.k.a. MU, a.k.a. Vostok) by TsKIB, Tula. Usually, with high-end guns, the best hints on the gun’s price come from what the hammer falls on at gun auctions. But the produce of the “Soviet Purdey’s” seldom grace the halls of Holt’s, Julia’s, and other auction halls. However, as many as five MTs guns could be found in the catalogue of Joh. Springer’s Erben XXIII Classic Auction (Nov. 9, 2017, Vienna, Austria). Continue reading
Yes, there were times when hunting was not only not discouraged, but actively promoted at the state level. Scroll down for English translation.
Of course, there’s a fine print. This poster from the late 1920s, is part of Stalin’s campaign agaitst private enterpeneuship (or what little of it was allowed in the USSR by New Economic Policy). Its main purpose is to encourage hunters to take their furs to state purchasing units rather than private traders. However, this ideological load doesn’t make the facts stated in the poster less real. In fact, everything except the take against private traders is perfectly true today.
“How long will my gun last?” – an important question not just for a shooter on a budget. Some brands measure estimated service life of their shotguns in thousands of shells the gun will fire. For example, Baikal MP-153 semiauto was guaranteed to last 3,000 Magnum rounds (1050 Bar service pressure), and so is its successor, MP-155. How well do the Russian autoloaders live up to these promises? In the natural course of events, the search for the answer would be long and difficult, as few hunters keep accurate records of shots fired and all hunt under different conditions. To make things faster and somewhat more scientific, some journalists and marketers run endurance tests, with thousands of rounds fired in the course of a few days.
But before I tell you how well (or badly) MP-153 and MP-155 performed at such tests (and show a couple of videos with MP-155), let me offer you something absolutely vital for correct interpetation of the results. Continue reading
I have made it a fast rule never to write about a new Russian hunting gun until I personally see it in the shop. Too many times a “new development” failed to make it to the consumer at the last moment. That’s why, even though I’ve read and heard a lot that Baikal is working on an inertia-operated semi, MP-156, I haven’t written a word about it. But starting this autumn, you can actually buy one in a Russian gun shop. Not that it would be a good idea. Continue reading
A few years ago a guy from the town where I used to live was driving home from an unsuccessful hunt and saw a hare hop along the road. He thought what the heck and purposefully hit it with his brand-new Audi. I have to say the Mid-Volga region is home to some of the biggest hares in the world, the biggest weigh over 7 kg. There was a boom, the driver’s side air bag went on, the car stalled and wouldn’t start again. The guy went out and saw the front bumper had a hole in it that looked like someone shot the car with a bazooka, and some important-looking liquid pouring out. So the hunter had to go home in a cab, and have the car towed to the dealer’s (it was still under warranty!). The next day he dropped by the dealership, and heard the hare went right through the bumper, the AC radiator, some power steering piping, and the main radiator, and stopped only at the engine block, bending the alternator belt assembly. The projected repair bill was about $10,000 and wasn’t covered by the insurance. As the guy was trying to digest the news, the manager asked if he wanted the hare. The mechanics found the critter as they examined the car – dead, of course, but still in one piece. The owner said just keep it. Now the manager had the problem of how to properly dispose of the carcass – by Russian law, you can’t just throw it away, you have to surrender it to a special service. But one of the mechanics said nonsence, the proper way to dispose of a hare is to eat it. He took the carcass home, cooked it, and later claimed it was the most delicious meal in his life.
The Baikal MP-155 semi-auto gets an upgrade, including a new walnut stock made on a brand-new Italian СNC machine. The new design features a thinner pistol grip and fore-end, and is said to be more ergonomically correct.
Other improvements in the updated gun include better recoil pad, new extended magazine cap, and sling swivels.
Are there any faithful followers of this blog? You haven’t seen any Russian hunting shotgun related content lately, have you? Heads up! Next week I’m starting to post again, and no, the book isn’t out yet, but peeepooooll…. have I got news for you from Russian gunmakers? Hell yeah!