I have a love for beautifully-done interwar and early postwar sporters on K98, M1903, and M1917 actions.I understand buying a gun just to tinker with. I mean, I still have that Sistema I bought for the express purpose of using it to learn how to mess with 1911s, right?
Conversely, I see current hack jobs on Finn Mosins or Argentine ’91s and feel sad. I lament the fact that I will likely never be able to spring for a nice, intact 33/40(t) since Cooper groupies scouterized 99% of them in the Eighties and Nineties.
It’s easier for me to understand the person who chopped a 10-year-old used car into a hot rod than it is the person who did the same thing to a car when it was one of the last intact survivors of the breed forty years later. But in both cases, if it was their car, it was their right to do with as they pleased, even if what they pleased was dumb.
(And yet I find myself completely callous to the fate of parts kits like the M16 upper in the post. Once the receiver’s been torched and the thing parted out, someone may as well have fun with the parts, I guess?)
A nice Argentine Sistema is a valuable and appreciating piece of history now, and I'd look askance at chopping one up. The one I bought, heavily pitted and re-arsenalled who knows how many times and with exactly 0% of the original finish remaining, featuring a garish import rollmark as a final indignity, was relatively worthless as an historical artifact, and so...