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  1. #1
    Member RogerD's Avatar
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    Need some info before possibly buying?

    So a couple of days ago, I discovered a 1891 Carcano, dated 1916, in pretty decent condition. The stock had been sanded, but only so lightly (and I mean lightly, no actual dings or dents were sanded out, or made less prominent.) It still had some decent dings and dents in the stock, which I'm fine with because it's just another part of the history of the rifle. As for the metal, there wasn't any rust on the outside, or any signs of it rusting, but the butt-plate was pretty beat up, looking a little like the moon. No cartouches that I could see, but the writing on the receiver was nice and prominent. The riflings and all that, looked relatively good, maybe a couple dark spots here and there (maybe one the size of a nickel being the largest,) but besides that, it was a moderately good looking barrel. . . I think, for a Carcano that age.

    The gun shop I found it at, is selling it for $200USD. I've seen other later Carcano's, like 1930s, short rifles and carbines, going for that price or higher, depending on their condition, but I'm not too familiar with seeing a 1891 outside the internet. So is $200USD a relatively good price? The action is smooth, or will be once I clean it up a bit, right now it's a bit stiff, and they haven't had it there for long, only about a week or so when I found it.

    Also I'd like to know by anyone who has or shot a M1891 Carcano, what kind of accuracy I can expect, if I get it? How much of it is determined by the rifle, and the shooter himself? Anything else I should know, that I've forgot to ask, would be greatly appreciated.


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    Really Senior Member Midmichigun's Avatar
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    Roger,
    I can't give you a direct answer, since I seldom see them either.
    As you mention you do see them on the Internet. I would look at Gunbroker and see what they sell for. That way you have a baseline.
    It appears that there is little interest in Italianicon items.... but I am sure an expert can clarify....
    I look forward to someone helping you out further!

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    Really Senior Member Aragorn243's Avatar
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    Examine it very carefully along the wood line. I've seen some of these that look good until you look there very closely. If you see pitting there, it is probably pitted badly under the wood. As for the price, if it's a long rifle, uncut, unmodified and in decent condition, that isn't a terrible price but you could probably get it for less, make an offer. Short rifles rarely get anywhere near $200 in my area, auction is less than $100, dealers and shows $130-$160.

    Only long rifle I ever saw was about $150, looked real good except for that pitting along the wood, I passed.

    Accuracy with currently available ammo is not good but it isn't the rifle, it's the ammo. Handloading will get you good results.

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    Really Senior Member RBruce's Avatar
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    Check my post about reloading for my Carcano made in 1896. I have a photo of my target.

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    Member RogerD's Avatar
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    Thread Starter
    Quote Originally Posted by Midmichigun View Post
    Roger,
    I can't give you a direct answer, since I seldom see them either.
    As you mention you do see them on the Internet. I would look at Gunbroker and see what they sell for. That way you have a baseline.
    It appears that there is little interest in Italianicon items.... but I am sure an expert can clarify....
    I look forward to someone helping you out further!
    Thanks, Midmichigun

    It's kind of odd. In my area, there's recently been a huge outpour of Italian rifles. Just two weeks ago, at the same gun shop, they had at least 10 cavalry carbine Carcano's, which I didn't really look at because they just don't interest me. And before them, there was a mixture of M38 Carcano's in the 7.35mm and 6.5mm. Long story short, they were all replaced by the time I got around to the shop again last, and found the M1891 I'm talking about, there alone surrounded by some Austrian M95s! I asked if it was a collector selling his collection, but it turned out to be several people selling them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aragorn243 View Post
    Examine it very carefully along the wood line. I've seen some of these that look good until you look there very closely. If you see pitting there, it is probably pitted badly under the wood. As for the price, if it's a long rifle, uncut, unmodified and in decent condition, that isn't a terrible price but you could probably get it for less, make an offer. Short rifles rarely get anywhere near $200 in my area, auction is less than $100, dealers and shows $130-$160.

    Only long rifle I ever saw was about $150, looked real good except for that pitting along the wood, I passed.

    Accuracy with currently available ammo is not good but it isn't the rifle, it's the ammo. Handloading will get you good results.
    Thanks, I will definitely take a closer look at the metal near the wood. I didn't really think of that that's something to look at with these. I will definitely check though. It is the full long rifle, infantry, untouched from what I know, except for of course the light sanding as I said. They are rather a unique find around my parts, even more unique than all those Vetterli and their variants that've come onto the market, so I account that to some of the raised price. But I always try to barter, and get it lower than the asking.

    As for ammo, I was definitely thinking of hand loading. Unless there's some old surplus somewhere, I haven't been able to find any RN 160gr. bullets anywhere, which is what I'd rather put through it, just like it did (possibly) during it's war years. Good to know about the factory ammo, and accuracy with these. It's definitely what I thought, with people I've known and heard speaking about Carcano's, and their poor accuracy firing factory ammo.

    Quote Originally Posted by RBruce View Post
    Check my post about reloading for my Carcano made in 1896. I have a photo of my target.
    Thanks, will do.

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    Really Senior Member Midmichigun's Avatar
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    Roger,
    I willprobably do the handloading myself.... due to my M38 in 7.35.
    The 6.5 is easier to get! I scored a few boxes of NEW commercial 6.5 ammo for my Italianicon Vetterli(sp) rebored for 6.5mm. (Since my Vet isn't as new as the rifles we are speaking of... care and safety are an issue.)
    Of what I have seen, there seem to be waves of people doing sell off's, especially as the economy has worn down savings accounts. (Last year it looked like Nambu pistols were raining down in my area...)
    I can't predict if the Italian rifles will be the next Mosin Nagants in collecting. Partly due to the ammunition...
    But I figure that now is the time to grab a few to fill out my WWI and WWII collections.
    Of what I have noticed tho... is that it is better to grab complete rifles due to the cost of spare parts... Which is interesting due to the amount of parts on the market and the lack of interest in Italian rifles (at least in my area).

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