Mauser action

Discussion in 'Technical Questions & Information' started by cjh7819, Apr 14, 2009.

  1. cjh7819

    cjh7819 New Member

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    I'm thinking about buying an old german m98 mauser in 8x57mm. If I do I want to sporterize it with a new barrel and stock. My question is will this old action be able to handle a 300 or 338 win mag or would I just be wasting my time? I'm not sure about when it was made, I haven't seen it yet. A neighbor mentioned it to me today and I have just been thinking about it ever since. Also what would one of these guns be worth in average condition?

    Thanks
     
  2. Mark

    Mark New Member

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    I'm in process now. This was one where I really got in over my head. I really like the 98 action, but there's a point of diminishing return.

    I started with a DWM Oberndorf Brazilian contract rifle. I had the hots for a 6.5-284. No problem, thinks I.

    $100 for a new bolt handle, welded on.
    $200 for a nice english walnut stock
    $145 for a trick 3 position safety.
    $40 for a Timney trigger.
    $265 for a Krieger barrel.
    $150 for the cost of the action.
    $55 for the cost of re-heat treating the action.
    $225 for pillar bedding.
    $25 for getting the lock screws welded up.

    You can see that I was able to do the metal work myself. I still don't have it blued, nor the stock finished.

    The heat treat comes with a story. The action turned out to be so soft I didn't think it would withstand the pressure without setting back.

    Whatever you pay for the action should be considered a down payment, and yes, a good quality 98 can handle a magnum cartridge. Roy Weatherby built rifles on surplus 98's in the early 1950's.

    Good luck.
    Mark
     

  3. cjh7819

    cjh7819 New Member

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    Thankyou Mark. I was wondering about the action strength. I just wasn't sure if those old actions would be able to handle a magnum or not without being strengthned.
    I'm just starting to really get into just a bit of gun work on the side for a hobby. I'm just about 31 and do not have any formal training in metalurgy or gunsmithing, just what I've picked up from a retired gunsmith in my area who is kind enough to teach me a little bit here and there when he's working on one of his own projects. I haven't ran this past him yet to see what he thinks, but I am grateful for your input. thanks again
     
  4. Mark

    Mark New Member

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    I love working on these old rifles. Even with the time and expense, I'm still going to continue building these.

    I don't want to be cured, just relieve the symptoms.

    Mark
     
  5. Helix_FR

    Helix_FR Active Member

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    It can be done but take some things into consideration. while the standard 98 action is plenty strong, I'd advise sticking to cartridges based off of the 8mm Mauser as that's what its designed for. Some older actions will not be able to handle the magnum rounds but there are some that can. I would take a very close look at what he has to sell. Don't buy it in hopes that it can be modified. If it doubt take it to a qualified smith and get there opinion. If the seller has a problem with that then find one were the seller knows something about it.
     
  6. islenos

    islenos Active Member

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    When I built my tack driver, I gave my gunsmith four rifles to pick the best one, because not all 98's are good enough for a high end target rifle.
     
  7. BillP

    BillP New Member

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    You asked the question "what would one of these guns be worth?). Keep in mind that you are buying only parts. He may be selling a gun but YOU are buying parts. Price comparable bolt/receivers. Will you be using anything else? How about the trigger? Will the bolt/receiver even work for what you want? It sounds like you are going to need work on the bolt face (that depends on what cartridge you want to end up with).

    As a previous post indicated building these actions up into a modern rifle is certainly possible and a lot of fun for many people. However the world is full of partly finished projects started by people who did not know what they were getting themselves into. The fact that you are contemplating starting such a project based on the possibility of a good deal on a particular rifle, makes me wonder.

    How much of the work will you be doing yourself? Are you a machinist with the tools available? Even a chambered barrel will probably need lathe work to install it. Since you are asking questions prior to even buying the gun, it sounds like are smart enough to find out what you would be getting into and that's a very good thing. You may find that starting with a barreled action is the way to go for your first such project. ;)