If I get a Mosin Nagant, instead of taking it to a gun smith is there some way that I could tell if the gun is able to handle the bullet myself? If I do get one it would be a 91/30 Mosin Nagant if that helps any. If I do have to take it to a gun smith how much would it cost? Also is there any way to tell what year a Mosin Nagant was made in?
Eggboy, to keep it simple No there is no way for you to do it yourself beyond a visual inspection. This won't tell you if there is excess spacing or other issues that could cause blow back or worse. As far as the year I cannot help you ID that, but I personally would take any gun manufactured in Russia or a former satellite state to a gun smith, and that includes a gun that was made last month. To be blunt the quality control stinks.
It has been a few years since I've had a gun inspected, but I can't think it would run you more than $30-$50 today. This is only a guess, call a couple gun smiths and ask them the question.
If you don't mind me asking what are you looking at spending? This may help us all direct you towards something that you can use and is within your budget. I like my new Marlin XL7 and recommend one, but if that is more than you are wanting to spend that recommendation does you no good.
Good luck with your search.