I was immediately thrilled by this, because not only is my love for the Mosin-Nagant well-known, but also because various people have been promising magazine extensions for my beloved "nugget" for quite some time now, and yet none of them have followed through on it. (Datamancer, I'm looking at you.)
And then comes along Bryan Cathey of Riflemods, who in the span of less than a year has gone from idea to prototype to purchasable product.
It Must Be Mine
I sent Mr. Cathey an email asking if I could get one for review, and not only did he send me one, but he talked to me on the phone for over an hour, telling me the history of how he developed the Mosin Magazine Extension, and what it's made from.
Let me tell you, friends, this is a seriously well-built piece of kit. Per the inventor, this magazine extension has:
- all steel construction
- every piece precision laser cut
- all TIG welded construction
- a heat-treated spring clip
- high quality hardware
- black oxide coated finish
- the adjustability to fit tightly to variations in the Mosin mag/trigger guard
Unboxing & Assembly
A few days later, I received a package from Riflemods. Top to bottom, left to right: magazine latch and hex key; magazine extension in shipping configuration with spring held down with a rubber band; a spare spring.
It must be noted that a regular purchase does not include the second spring. It was included with mine so that I could test its durability without damaging the extension itself.
My initial impression is that, just like the Mosin-Nagant, this is a durable piece of equipment. Everything is coated, even the spring, and while I am not a believer in "testing to destruction" I feel it's safe to say that this extension will handle just about anything you can throw at it, with one possible exception:
If you dropped a fully-loaded magazine from waist-height or higher, and it landed such that there was lateral (shearing) force on the connection points, it could possibly bend or break. However, looking at how this beast is installed -- hinge in front, latch in back, and the flanges on either side to prevent wobble -- it might just survive even that.
Here is the magazine extension in its natural configuration. You will note that the spring extends upwards into the receiver, which means that it cannot hold ammunition while detached. This is why I have been very careful to refer to this as a magazine extension and not a magazine in its own right.
The good side of this, however, is that you can still perform an ammo dump with the extension like you could with the stock magazine; you just need to rotate the body of it out so that the spring clears the magazine, and the rounds fall right out.
When you buy this extension, you also receive an email with a link to a private video which shows you how to install it. As it is private I will not be posting the link to it here. However, I have received permission to share it with anyone who is seriously considering this purchase. If you are so interested, let me know and I will send you the link.
How It Performs
I took it to the range yesterday, and fired 65 rounds through it. (I had intended to shoot 100 rounds, but my shoulder pulled a Will Smith and went Aw HELL naw! after I tried to load the next 10.)
Between my first volley of only five rounds (I wanted to make sure the spring would feed properly) to my final volley of 55-65, I did not experience a single jam, malfunction, or failure to feed.
I didn't have any problem charging it with two stripper clips full of cartridges. I didn't have any problem dumping the unfired rounds when the range went cold, nor did I have a problem when I put it back in place after going hot.
I can't think of anything better I can say about this magazine extension. It makes a promise, and it delivers on that promise with 100% effectiveness. It does what it says it does. It just works.
|This is bad. Never do this.|
|This is proper position.|
It is worth noting, though, that simply cycling the action will not cause this problem. It only occurs when removing the entire bolt from the rifle's action, and not when cycled back to the loading position.
Is It Worth Buying?
This is always a loaded question, as there is a certain amount of disdain for Mosin modifications by the purists. "Why would you want to bastardize a perfectly good piece of history?" is a frequent critique, as is "Why would you spend X amount of money on a cheap rifle that's only worth a hundred bucks?"
Generally, these boil down to either "You're polishing a turd" or "Stop doing this thing I don't like." With this made plain, I usually ignore and/or mock the people asking the questions. However, as this is a review (and I've been
Really, the only strike this product has against it is its price tag of $140. Yes, that's quite expensive, but in return you get a 7.62x54R rifle with double the ammo capacity, and given that Mosin-Nagants are cheap, you could look at the situation like "Well, I could spend $600+ on a 10-round .30-06 rifle, or I could spend $100 for the rifle and $140 for the magazine extension and still have $360 to spend on ammunition and other fun things."
If you like having increased ammo capacity for your Mosin, it's worth it.
If you enjoy modding your Russian beast, it's worth it (and a quick and easy mod to make, as opposed to bedding the action).
If you like the idea of other people looking at your rifle in awe, going "Is that a Mosin with a ten-round magazine?", it's worth it just for the expression on their faces.
But if you're a purist, or you can't abide spending that much on a $100 rifle, then it's not for you.
My Rating: A+. I wish the price was lower, but given the quality of design and the fact that's a specialized item without a lot of demand driving the price down, I can't argue with Mr. Cathey's decision. I sincerely hope that he achieves great commercial success with his products (he makes muzzles brakes as well), and perhaps that increased demand will reduce cost somewhat.
If you wish to order either a magazine extension or a muzzle brake for your Mosin, you may reach Mr. Cathey at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Obligatory FTC disclaimer: While I received this product for free, when I contacted the manufacturer I inquired as to the price and offered to buy one. The manufacturer chose to send me one for free and in no way required me to give a good review in exchange for product. If you've ever read my reviews, you'd notice that if I have a problem with a product I will say as much. Now go away.