Preorders now open for my book, Chassepot to FAMAS: French Military Rifles 1866-2016! Get your copy here!
The MSE (Modified St Etienne) version of the MAS 49-56 was developed specifically for international competition shooting by French military teams. The standard MAS 49-56 service rifle was much more of a combat weapon than a target rifle, and the MSE improved several of its shortcomings in that arena. Most significantly, it added a longer stock and a proper pistol grip to improve handling. The MSE also has a substantially improved trigger and iron sights with much finer adjustments that the standard rifle. These elements were combined as a kit of upgrade parts to be dropped onto a regular 49-56; the MSE was not made as a complete new rifle. Only some 900 were originally made, and they are often faked today.