Iraqi Gunsmithing: SKS, Mosin Nagant aficionados be warned

    Photos from a backyard gunsmith in Iraq are showing a myriad of customization on Kalashnikovs, Lee Enfields (No.1 SMLEs and No.4s) and Mosin Nagants in some very interesting ways. Attempts to add picatinny rails, scopes, thumbhole stocks, forward grips, and bullpup conversions are all displayed in their full glory here. As you look through the pictures you can see the results of trial and error as the gunsmith attempts different improvisation methods, then going back and perfecting them for the next round of home manufacture. Some of the Lee Enfields have had their barrels replaced with 7.62x54Rmm PKM barrels, while others retain their .303 ones. Many appear to have Harris imitation bipods mounted to forward sling swivels as well as different scopes, to include Barska optics. Also included are SKS paint jobs, and the welding of picatinny rails to receiver covers, a product that has long been available in the United States.

    The designer seems to be a large fan of woodworking, cutting all sorts of wood into thumbhole stocks replacing the original wood stocks of these rifles. This particular Lee Enfield had its barrel cut down as well, in addition to the magazine having an enclosure around it.


    And what I assume the rifle looked like before with the cut down barrel


    One of the No.4 Lee Enfields appears to have been cut down to outwardly resemble an L42. This particular rifle also appears to have been in use with a member of the Iraqi defense forces, as he is pictured with the rifle while in uniform.

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    This bullpup Kalashnikov appears to be a particularly interesting job, with a wood cut out for the stock, and a rod from the new trigger to the old. Trigger pull must be atrocious.

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    Then a hodgepodge of Lee Enfields, SKSs, and Mosin Nagants in different stages of customization.

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    Then we have this crazy SKS-

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    Infantry Marine, based in the Midwest. Specifically interested in small arms history, development, and usage within the MENA region and Central Asia. To that end, I run Silah Report, a website dedicated to analyzing small arms history and news out of MENA and Central Asia.

    Please feel free to get in touch with me about something I can add to a post, an error I’ve made, or if you just want to talk guns. I can be reached at [email protected]