Grandfather's Rifle - WWII 1945 captured arm

Discussion in 'Technical Questions & Information' started by drainman72, Jul 27, 2012.

  1. drainman72

    drainman72 New Member

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    First time on site and looking to find information on grandfathers rifle. It was given to my father and passed on to me. It is a single shot rifle, hex barrel, double trigger with some engraving on metal. I found proof marks on barrel but have not good reference on them. It has three proof marks B, G and U with a crown over them. I took it to a local gun shop and the check it over and chambered the barrel. They gave me a sheet out of a book showing it a 8 x48Rmm under European sporting rifles. I have attached pics on gun, proof marks and 1945 paperwork. Any guidance would be appreciated...both grandparents have passed and did not ask any of the good question to my grandfather as a child.

    thanks,

    drainman72

    Attached Files:

  2. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    The B is "finished". It wasn't for an "in-process" inspection, but was done after the rifle was finished and assembled. The G is "rifled barrel". The U and lack of an N means that it is not proofed for smokeless. It is a "black powder only" gun.

    That 9.08 should be the caliber.

    The 172,28 could very well be date of manufacture. That would either be 17 February 1928, or possibly June 20, 1928 (the 172 day of that year).
  3. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

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    The 172.28 is the gauge, used in old German proof marks before the use of the bore diameter in millimeters. It is equivalent to 8mm, and the rifle is probably in 8.15x46R (not 8x48R). 8.15x46R was a common target rifle caliber in Germany and post-WWI, Mauser even made a Model 98 in that caliber for target shooting/military training when the 8x57JS was banned. In spite of seeming larger than 8mm (the "8.15mm" is just a name) the 8.15x46R uses a .318" bullet the same as many of the older 8mm's. (Note that the "gauge" is bore diameter while the bullet is the size of the groove diameter. Actually, all 8mm's whether they use a .318" bullet or a .323" bullet have a nominal bore diameter of .311")

    Here is an explanation of that gauge marking:

    http://www.germanguns.com/tech.html

    Jim
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2012
  4. zkovach

    zkovach Active Member

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    No help here but what a neat rifle be sure to hang on to that one!
  5. drainman72

    drainman72 New Member

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    Getting there! Thanks for the knowledge everyone.

    Drainman
  6. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    Jim, that was neat to learn.
  7. gun-nut

    gun-nut Member

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    :yeahthat:
  8. RJay

    RJay Well-Known Member

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    Just curious, who did he capture a civilian rifle t from?
  9. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    Coulda been Home Guard.

    Coulda been a civilian turning it in. April 28 was ten days before VE Day. We were deep into Germany then. I don't know if we had that policy, but if we didn't we woulda been foolish, but general rule is when you conquer a country, you have the natives turn in their weapons. That way they don't form guerrilla bands and shoot your soldiers.

    So let's say that we have taken Frankfort. Big trucks are going through the street broadcasting over loudspeakers that all civilians are to go to city hall and turn in any firearms. City Hall is drei kilo meters away. Herr Schmidt has not seen benzine for 6 months. His bicycle has been confiscated. Just then a squad of US soldiers goes walking by. So he goes outside with his gun in both hands, raised over his head, hoping they don't shoot him, walks up and hands it to a soldier, then goes back inside, relieved, because he did as required and turned his gun over to the occupiers.

    Private Jones turns to Private Brown and says, "Look here what I got", and Private Brown says, "Man, you lucky."

    Or he coulda found it in a bombed-out house.

    Or he coulda bought it for two packs of cigarettes and a Hershey bar.

    Lots of ways to get a civilian gun.
  10. RJay

    RJay Well-Known Member

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    Yep, know that Alpo, just get a tickle wheneven I see "captured" in reference to a civilian bring back. So many people today don't realize that in some cases ( most cases ) guns were piled in the streets and after the GI's took their pick Shermans then rolled back and forth over the piles. In my war, whenever we checked out an empty villiage there wasn't a dog gone thing worth stealing.
  11. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

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    With our dedication to the Second Amendment and the sanctity of private property, we like to conveniently forget that American troops in Germany respected neither. Germany was a conquered country and all guns found were contraband, whether military arms or ancient muzzle loading shotguns. Those that were not taken by individual soldiers as souvenirs were destroyed, either by smashing or by being heaped up, doused with gasoline and torched. That included target pistols, antique rifles, double barrel shotguns, precision made drillings - it didn't matter, guns were taken or destroyed.

    While Nazi Germany had the highest rate of official and quasi-official armament in the world, not even all the military, SS, SA, police, etc. could account for all the pistols brought back by U.S. soldiers. Most of those were simply defense guns, owned by ordinary Germans. Certainly guns like that under discussion here were not carried into battle by the Waffen-SS or fanatic "last ditch" Nazis. That gun was some German sportsman's pride and joy.

    I once said as much, and was subjected to severe abuse by people who claimed I was "unpatriotic" and that Americans would never do any thing like that. Well, believe that if you wish, but a gun like that came out of a German home, and had it not been turned over, that home could have been blasted apart by a tank gun. That is what being a conquered country means, and that is what some of the anti-gun fanatics want to see happen here, except that our own army is to do the conquering and destuction.

    Jim
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