Well, Gentlemen, it sure took a while, but James, a local RFD here, came good in the end and dug up a MAS36. Here is a little movie, fresh off the press, shot this morning on our newly-built firing point....

Tac's guns - MAS36 - YouTube

The recoil was VERY gentle, much like a 6.5x55SE, but the lack of use showed in the very stiff action. I'm not exactly cursing aloud, but I'm sure thinking about it!

I have a MAS36/51. There are reduced load spring kits avaible for these in France, and some US outfit makes adjustable triggers for them if you so desire. I got a spare mainspring and shaved a few coils off it to smooth the whole trigger action.

What ammo did you use?
I've trialed one in a shooting cinema, cheap as chips, a German mate wanted to use it for driven pig.

Pros: Solidly made!

Cons: Rough as ****!
The trigger is a disaster and that version had been "polished and adjusted" by a good gunsmith.
That bent cocking handle is well weird.
Ammo is available, but in the original 7.5 x 54 there is little hunting ammo on sale as the French can't use it. There are civilianised versions out there in various calibres, 8 x 60s being about the most interesting, but they are hard to find.
7.5 x 54 delivers only around 3000J with the 9g military ball, with heavier loads 11.7g for example it struggles to reach 3500J. The 9g FMJ ball shoots very gently out of a quite heavy rifle and so is perhaps of interest to target shooters in "Ordnanz" competitions, but considering the quality of the rifle and the cost of the ammo, there are much cheaper and better made options out there.
The lack of a safety, common in French mil rifles of the time, completely ruled the gun out for me. If you are waiting for pig to run past you in dense woodland you need one safely up the spout. I understand that there is a trigger group with a safety catch available for the MAS36, but I've never seen one.
Er, right, gentlemen. As I explone in the Youtube movie -

a. The rifle did not belong to me, but to a kind shooting pal who thought we'd all enjoy seeing something unusual instead of the plethora of AIs, Dolphin Arms, Riflecraft and Fox stuff that most seem to shoot these days. He is an RFD, and has load of stuff that never sees the light of day. I was just grateful for the chance to see a piece that I've never shot before.

b. As I posted, I was using PPU - Prvi Partizan 174gr ammunition.

c. I very much doubt that it will ever come out again, as he does his meat hunting in Tesco's, like most of us.

The owner tells me that the last thing on his mind is spending any money on this little rifle.

I can see his point - he has a few hundred others, some more worthy of being taken out occasionally and shot than this one.

And yes, I did clean it after I shot it.

I didn't intend for this thread to drag on - it was just to show anybody interested in older guns that they are stil around and still being shot occasionally by old farts like me.


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