To those whose hands initially grow out of the seat, whatever you give, it is unlikely to hit the target even from the best rifle. But if a man is an “arrow from God”, then with a good rifle he will show a better result than a bad one. And what is interesting with regard to this topic: it is known that the mass sniper practice, although it was known since the time of the American Civil War, became truly mass during the Second World War, but in the hands of the overwhelming majority of its snipers was a Mosin 1891 of the year!
VO had a great article on Soviet snipers on the site, so it’s hardly worth rewriting it in this case. However, "every cuckoo praises its swamp". Therefore, we mention that the foreign "Sniper Center" calls the first on the performance of a sniper in the world ... the Finnish shooter Simo Häyhä. According to the center, on his account 542 struck "goals", the second they have is our Ivan Sidorenko - he has 500. Turning to Wikipedia, we can find out that according to various data, Imo shot from 542 (the source is the aforementioned “Sniper Center”) to 742 Red Army (documented by 219 killed), and the difference was due to the fact that he also acted automatically weapons.
More, however, the Finnish arrows didn’t notice, so all this can be attributed to propaganda, because nowhere do they lie so much as in war and in hunting. On the other hand, the fact that he was an accurate marksman is undoubted. But what is important in this case is exactly which rifle he fired. And it was our “three-lane” that faithfully and faithfully served him, but only from the “other side”, that is, he used the “Finnish three-lane”.
Finnish trilinek M39 (Army Museum in Stockholm)
Well, the story about it should start with the fact that Finland as a state did not exist until the October Revolution destroyed the former Russian empire and it did not gain independence by the will of Leninist Bolshevik government. However, the Finns and the king lived probably better than all the other subjects of the Russian Empire, so it was a sin to complain to them anyway.
Photos of the army of the army of Finland 30 of the last century. Rifles from left to right: 7,62 mm M91-24 infantry rifle with M91-24 bayonet: M28 rifle with M28 Sk bayonet; M28-30 with M28-30 bayonet. (Military Museum of Finland)
When the Civil War broke out in Russia, the majority of the Finns joined the “white” movement. Well, let's say, supported him. It began the creation of its own armed forces, and it was here that the country was very useful huge stocks of rifles from the Russian arsenals in Finland, which the Finns captured during the same civil war. Thus, having obtained all this mass of rifles, Finland very slowly and consistently took up their gradual modernization and eventually created a whole line of “trilineas”, which in a number of indicators began to exceed the Russian original.
Mxnumx rifle (Army Museum in Stockholm)
First of all, we note that the Finnish model of the Mosin rifle is a slightly modernized basic model, but in a well thought-out way it has been modernized! What should be noted.
However, at first rifles were used without any alterations, or were limited to alterations to a minimum, replacing mostly barrels. Many were no different from Russian rifles, so Finnish markings appeared on the chamber holders - SA - “Army of Suomi”. The most perfect was the sample of M / 28 or “pyuskyukorva" (or "spitz" - slang name because of the "ears" protecting the front sight. Pystykorva, by the way, literally means the same thing - "ears up," became the main weapon of the Finnish security forces We also assembled it from the details of the 1891 rifle of the year, but some of the components were bought abroad.
Usually, the Finns changed Russian trunks and Russian sights. Before 1928, the old sight was used, but the Finns crossed out (scored with a slanting touch) Russian arshins on it and filled their meter scale. A standard 5 magazine for cartridges was retained in the rifle. The cartridge was used 7,62 × 53 mm R, that is, the diameter of the bullet 7,62 mm, and the sleeve length 53 mm had a flange (edge). This cartridge was different from the original Russian 7,62 × 54 mm R cartridge slightly, but the difference was still felt. The Moscow militiamen, who received Finnish captured ammunition and noted that “it’s possible to shoot Finnish ammunition with rifles, but not with machine guns, joked it to the fullest extent.” The Finns took the original dagger bayonet, replacing the old needle, and the rifle itself was shot without him. The bayonet was now fastened on the bed, and not on the trunk. The trigger mechanism, which now received a descent with a so-called “warning”, was seriously modernized. The neck of the box became “pistol”, as in the case of the German Mauser. True, this neck of the box was placed not on the 28 model, but on the M39 and then it was already put on all subsequent samples. The Finns also increased the wall thickness at the barrel, which had a very positive effect on the improvement of shooting accuracy. Since the rifle barrels Finland ordered abroad, the variation in the calibers was quite significant. They had to be marked in Latin letters - A, B, C (caliber of captured rifles 1891 / 30 of the year had the designation in the form of a letter - D).
Russian "trilinek" in the Museum of the Army in Stockholm.
The scale of purchases is indicated by the following figures: in 1924, 26 000 trunks were purchased: 8 000 from SIG in Switzerland and 18 000 in three German companies.
The Finnish 30 Armed Forces of the 20th Century were divided into regular army and civil guard. The civil guard was a national militia, and they often had their own designs of rifles and a unique marking system.
The 1927 model of the year was the first truly new Finnish rifle model. Despite the fact that M1927 still consisted of many Russian parts, it received a new box of arctic birch, a heavier, but shorter stem. The manufacturer was a supplier of weapons for the security corps workshop "SAKO". The rifle went into service with the regular army, not the civil guard. A total of about 30 000 pieces were made in 1928 – 1933 years. The next rifle introduced by the Finns was the 1928 model of the year - essentially a version for the civilian army rifle of the 1927 model. The 1928 / 30 civil guard rifle also had a heavier barrel than the original, a thinner metal magazine and a new scope. The result was the 1939 model of the year. This model was accepted both in the army and in the civil guard. True, the weight of the rifle became larger: the weight of the 4.3 kilogram, the length of the barrel 68.58 cm, the length of 118.11 cm. The weight of the bayonet together with the sheath - 449.3 gram, without the sheath 333.66 gram.
The main differences rifle M28:
• Four swivels, instead of the previous slots for attaching the belt, which made it possible to quickly redo its mount in both cavalry and infantry versions.
• Trigger with warning.
• Semi-piston stock neck.
• The barrel compared to the 1891 model rifle of the year is thickened and shortened.
Apply the same thickened trunks, the Finns had already begun on the rifle M24, to the modernization of which they attracted German and Swiss companies. Modernization took place in 1923-1928, and about 10 thousands of rifles underwent such alteration.
Swivels and half-pistol grip of the M28 rifle.
Then, Tikkakoski and the state-owned enterprise VKT upgraded the old M91 and M24 rifles in 1929-1934 twice. and 1939-1940 Of the 120, thousands of old rifles were able to upgrade the 55 thousands. For arming snipers on some installed optical sights of various types.
M28 rifle upgraded "SAKO", for which the trunks ordered the company "SIG". But then the trunks were made by the SAKO company itself. In all, thousands of rifles were assembled at this plant.
Since 1939, a sample M28 / 30 has been released on the basis of a rifle. It did not differ from the previous sample, except that it was produced at once in three enterprises. In total, 98,6 thousands of rifles of this type participated in the war. Despite the shorter barrel, the rifle's weight was 4,5 kg; the initial speed of the bullet decreased slightly and was 789 m / s; and aiming shot - 1800 m.
A distinctive feature of the carbine for the cavalry M27rv (converted from the 1915 carbine g.), Made in 1934-1935. firm «Tikkakoski», was a curved shutter handle. Also on the sighting bar arshin replaced by meters. But they were made a little, only about 2,2 thousands of units. The weight of the carbine was 3,7 kg.
Well, now we can say a few words about Simo Hyaha. He was from peasants, the seventh child among eight children. He lived on a farm, hunted, fished, learned a little, helped his elder brothers to peasantry. In 17 for years, he joined the local guard unit, engaged in sniper shooting and performed well at sniper competitions in the Vyborg branch of this organization.
He began his military service in the 1925 year, in the bicycle battalion, where he received the rank of non-commissioned officer. But Hayha was returned to sniping only nine years later in the fortress of Utti in the town of Kouvola.
For the three months of the "Winter War" 1939 — 1940. he showed a record result of sniper shooting, although the counting was done according to his words, but when they were confirmed by his comrades, only those enemy soldiers who had been killed for sure were counted for him. If several snipers fired at the same target at once, then the struck target was not counted in any of them. Finnish propaganda claimed that from 16.12.1939 and 06.03.1940, Xyuhi had 10 Red Army men every day, and, of course, about him, as a national hero, he didn’t write anything lazy.
However, 6 March 1940 g. Hyyuhya was injured by a bursting bullet in the face on the left side, with the result that he was disfigured and his jaw split. He was seriously injured, he was taken to the rear hospital, and then to Helsinki, where he had to do some very difficult operations. For example, his jaw was restored with bone taken from his thigh. Therefore, in the 1941 — 1944 war. he did not participate, although he asked to go to the front. There is a photo where he was captured after recovery. Of course, the achievement of the then medicine is obvious. After this, only in horror movies to shoot!
Hyahya used the M28-30 “spitz” rifle (60974 number) for sniping, and what is most surprising is that it did not have an optical sniper scope. He explained this by the fact that the glass in winter is covered with frost, and the shine of the lenses gives its location. Yes, and you have to keep your head higher, which is also dangerous. Many of his tactics were simple, although original. For example, he poured water over the snow under the barrel of his rifle, and he did not take off from the shots, and could not unmask his position. And he kept the snow in his mouth, so as not to give his place steam from the breath and it also helped. And a gift of fate for Simo was the growth in 152, see that. It was easy to hide. It is also interesting that he did not like to shoot for a long distance, it is reliably known that he did not shoot further than 450 meters.
Simo Hyahya in his gear for the winter sniping and with his "Finnish three-line".
For services in the sniper case Simo Hayuhi 28 August 1940, received from Marshal Mannerheim rank of junior lieutenant, was awarded the Order of the Cross of Freedom 1-th and 2-th class, also received a Silver Cross Coll and nominal sniper rifle. In the Finnish army he was nicknamed "White Death"!
After the war, Simo Hähähya bred dogs and hunted; President Urho Kekkonen himself went to him to hunt elk. When asked by journalists how he managed to become such a good sniper, he succinctly answered: "Training." Equally indicative was his reply regarding remorse: "I did what I ordered, and as good as I could."
Rifles with such stamps are constantly met in Finland. They were not even grinded, but simply “SA” were stuffed side by side.
Interestingly, the most effective Wehrmacht sniper Matthias Hetzenauer and the second after him, according to the results of Joseph Allerberg, were also shot with a Mosin rifle ...
And at the very end there is such a curious fact: it is not necessary to think that the Finnish army was armed with only one “three-line”. Not at all, very few people know that in the year of 1941, by way of military assistance, she received from Fascist Italy 94 500 rifles "Manlicher-Carcano" and 50 millions of cartridges to them. But they were used exclusively in the rear parts and transport. In the course of the Winter War, the Swedes also transferred the Swedish Mauser rifles to their eastern neighbor 84 900 rifles, which, like the Manliherovka, the Finns filled the letters "SA". But when the war ended ... the Swedes wanted to buy them back and bought out those that did not become worthless!
P.S. A very informative and richly illustrated guide to rifles of all countries and peoples is this book, published in the USA in 2012 by Andrew Mobrai Inc. publishing house. Its authors are Stuart S. Mobray and Joe W. Pouleau.
To be continued ...