FORUM HELP NEEDED : Mauser - ‘Broomhandle’ - C96 Pistol - Cal 8.15mm (Experimental)

Discussion in 'General Military Arms & History Forum' started by martyjung, Mar 9, 2011.

  1. martyjung

    martyjung New Member

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    Mauser - ‘Broomhandle’ - C96 Pistol - Caliber 8.15mm (Experimental)

    Pistol - Variation 1
    Since the early 1960s, there has been much discussion re the C96 - 8.15mm pistol … A small number of these pistols have been verified and exist within the Model 1930, 8xxxxx to 9xxxxx serial range. They are pictured, described and well documented in the classic reference books for the C96 pistol, including ‘System Mauser’ by Breatherd and Schroeder, ‘The Mauser Self-Loading Pistol’ by Belford and Dunlap, and ‘The Broomhandle Mauser Pistol 1896-1936’ by Erickson and Pate. The method of verification has been to make an accurate casting of the chamber which is then compared to the original DWM factory case information and similarly for the bore which is compared to the original DWM factory bullet information. Chamber cast comparison with original DWM factory case information is mentioned in ‘System Mauser’ on page 150.

    Cartridge
    The DWM 580 case and the DWM 501 bullet (hollow base)/502 bullet (flat and straight base) are illustrated, described and well documented in DWM Case Drawings Volume 1 (2nd Edition), DWM Case Drawings Volume 2 and DWM Bullet Drawings Volume 3 all taken from original DWM source material and published by GIG Concepts Inc, and the Handbuch der Pistolen und Revolver Patronen by Brandt.

    There are still a few people, who inexplicably, continue to deny the existence of the C96 - 8.15mm pistol.

    Pistol - Variation 2
    There is another variation of the C96 - 8.15mm pistol. These pistols are currently being verified and exist within the 2xxxxx to 4xxxxx serial range. These pistols are not pictured, described or well documented in any of the classic reference books. On 20 December 1999, in London, the very prestigious auction house, Cristie’s auctioned a verified C96 - 8.15mm pistol, serial number 275989. The details are available on the Cristie’s website.

    The existence of this variation of C96 - 8.15mm pistol is known as the direct result of internet information exchanges between collectors regarding C96 pistols that are not 7.63mm, not 9mm and not in the 8xxxxx to 9xxxxx serial range. These pistols are all factory original, all with matching numbered parts. They have each been examined closely by experts who state that they have been re-bored from 7.63mm to 8.15mm at the factory, by Mauser.

    Forum Help Needed
    Several collectors in Europe and the USA are currently in the process of searching for other collectors that have C96 - 8.15mm pistols, especially within the 2xxxxx to 4xxxxx serial range.

    We are going to make several accurate Cerrosafe castings of the chamber and bore, then have well known pistol/ cartridge experts, in Europe and in the USA, rigorously compare the castings to the original DWM factory specifications for the case and the bullet. Several of us have already shared key casting measurements and find them to be ‘identical’ to each other and to the original DWM factory data. The word ‘identical’ is used here to mean - very close.

    If you have such a C96 pistol and are interested in participating with us, then please respond to this posting. We would like to find as many C96 - 8.15mm pistol owners as possible.

    Thanks for your interest.
  2. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

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    Re: FORUM HELP NEEDED : Mauser - ‘Broomhandle’ - C96 Pistol - Cal 8.15mm (Experimen

    Just curious, but why would the factory "re-bore" 7.63mm pistols to 8.15? Even for a limited production or experimental, one would think the factory would simply make the barrel for whatever cartridge they wanted. And how would any expert be able to tell if the barrel had been re-bored at the factory? I would think a re-bored and re-rifled barrel would be more likely to be an after-market proposition.

    Jim
  3. martyjung

    martyjung New Member

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    Re: FORUM HELP NEEDED : Mauser - ‘Broomhandle’ - C96 Pistol - Cal 8.15mm (Experimen

    Jim ... Thanks for your interest in this subject ... No one really knows why Mauser tried this size of cartridge ... There has been lots of conjecture that they were asked by some foreign country to do so; however, there is no evidence to support that theory ...

    Currently, our participants have several 8.15mm pistols in the lower serial number group (2xx,xxx to 4xx,xxx) and several in the higher serial number group (8xx,xxx to 9xx,xxx) ... The lower group are all moderately used pistols made during WW1 and started life as 7.63mm ... The upper group are all very tight, almost new condition pistols, Model 1930 ... According to cartridge experts the 8.15mm cartridge dates to about 1933-1936 ...

    One can surmise that an initial, pre-production batch was made from older 7.63mm pistols that happened to be in the factory (for whatever reasons) ... These were re-bored to 8.15mm ... The production batch was made from new parts including barrels made specifically for 8.15mm ... In either case - VERY FEW - pistols were ever made ...

    Many years ago, Harry E. Jones (author of Luger Variations) examined my pistol for a week and he was the person (in my case) that concluded the barrel had to have been re-bored because the pistol showed moderate use, as in WW1 use ... He stated that he had examined the bore extremely carefully and in his 'expert' opinion, the work had been done by Mauser at the factory ... The other study participants all have very similar stories regarding the examination of their pistols by experts who reached the same conclusion concerning the re-bore ...

    Because we now have 8.15mm pistols from both serial number ranges, we are preparing to have Cerrosafe chamber/ bore castings compared to determine both similarities and differences ...

    Marty
  4. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

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    Re: FORUM HELP NEEDED : Mauser - ‘Broomhandle’ - C96 Pistol - Cal 8.15mm (Experimen

    Any such work after WWI leads to obvious thoughts about the influence of the Versailles Treaty. But one would think that if Mauser wanted a larger caliber, and could not go to the 9mm Parabellum, they already had the 9mm Export. IMHO, an 8.15mm bullet in the standard 7.63 case could have case support problems, but maybe not.

    Jim
  5. Millwright

    Millwright Active Member

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    Re: FORUM HELP NEEDED : Mauser - ‘Broomhandle’ - C96 Pistol - Cal 8.15mm (Experimen

    Not being a military arms fanatic, but somewhat acquainted with history, seems to me these could be a short series of remanufactured arms using surrendered arms subject to post-war controls. Lacking a domestic market and in need of foreign exchange, they were retailored to specs issued by offshore customers. Possible customers could span the world. Various European colonial governments, their Latin American siblings, Asian, MiddleEastern and Asian governments make up a short list. Many in those areas favored the "bigger is better" concept. So did the United States Army. >MW
  6. RJay

    RJay Active Member

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    Re: FORUM HELP NEEDED : Mauser - ‘Broomhandle’ - C96 Pistol - Cal 8.15mm (Experimen

    A few years ago I did some research on this cartridge. I no longer have the notes but it was manufactured in a small amount and chambered in the C-96. There was a scarcity of information on the cartridge so it must have been a experimental thing only. I do remember that after several days of searching and two trips to a very large library , if I remember correctly, I found about two paragraphs. The guns and cartridges are out there , it is not a fairy tale:). It was easier finding information on the Baby .380 Mauser Luger, of which 4 were made and two surviving examples.
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