Have you ever heard the term "duffle cut?"
The gun world has many different inside terms that sound like complete gibberish to an outsider unfamiliar with firearms. Some of them are more obscure than others. For instance, have you ever heard the term "duffle cut?" This is a term that dates to World War I and II.
Perhaps your grandfather brought home an old Mosin Nagant, Gewehr 43, or K98 with one of these cuts in it. It may seem strange to cut the forend of a firearm you want to keep, but the soldiers had a good reason. Ian of the YouTube channel Forgotten Weapons explains it in more detail.
Perhaps millions of firearms were brought back home to the states in this manner. Most were probably shipped in wooden crates, but they still had to be cut down in this fashion to fit properly. If you own a surplus firearm with a cut like this, now you know why it was there.
Most duffle cuts you will see on wartime surplus firearms are vertical cuts, but the firearm featured in this video features a diagonal cut. The soldier that did this was quite smart when you think about it. That makes it much easier to hide the cut and it also adds a little strength with the barrel band when it is put back together.
While some of these rifles were simply war souvenirs, quite a few country boys took stuff like this home and used them to hunt deer and other big game. Many of these rifles were produced in massive quantities and so parts and ammo were quite plentiful after the war if anything went wrong. It was a great way for many of them to save a little money.
Thanks Ian, for the fascinating bit of history. We learned something useful to look for if we ever go to buy a surplus World War firearm.