Old Rifle

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by Illinoisdon, Mar 19, 2007.

  1. Illinoisdon

    Illinoisdon New Member

    Mar 19, 2007
    I just came into possession of an old, what I believe is a, german rifle. It is marked Danzig 1906 on the top of the reciever. It is bolt action with a straight out the side bolt handle.

    Thanks for any guidance as to its caliber and history.


    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Mar 19, 2007
  2. Mark

    Mark New Member

    Jul 1, 2006
    There should be a bunch of numbers stamped on most of the parts. These numbers should match, at least what numbers are stamped.
    If these numbers do match, you have an original WWI mauser rifle.

    This would be 8X57 mauser caliber, available in lots of different sporting goods stores.
    It was made in 1906, at the Danzig arsenal. Yes, that would make it 101 years old.

    It's not in all that good of condition, but if all original, these are not around every corner.
    I really like old mausers like this, I could look at this one for at least an hour.

  3. Based on what I can see from the pictures, Illinois, and if it has a straight bolt and a 1906 date, I'm fairly certain your rifle is a German Mauser Gewehr 1898; i.e., the earliest version of the famous Mauser 98 adopted by Germany as its primary battle rifle from 1898 through the Second World War. Most later versions of the weapon had turned bolts and most models (called Karabiner, or Carbine) were a few inches shorter. The sight on your rifle is pretty much a dead giveaway because the Germans later changed that design when they came our with the 98a and 98b models for ease of manufacture.

    By the way, welcome to TFF! :)
  4. Xracer

    Xracer *TFF Admin Staff Mediator*

    Feb 23, 2001
    Minn-eeee-sota, ya, sure, you bet!
    Hi Don........welcome to TFF. :)

    Indeed, your rifle is a German Mauser Gewehr 98, was manufactured at the Danzig Arsenal in 1906, and is in caliber 7.92x57mm (8x57).

    This was the primary rifle the Germans used during WWI, and about 3,500,000 of these rifles were built between 1898 and 1918.

    Value (from the Standard Catalog of Military Firearms):

    Exc. - $500
    V.G. - $400
    Good - $300
    Fair - $150

    Here are a few websites that will give you some info on the history, care, and feeding of your gew98:




  5. One other point, Don: If you are contemplating shooting the rifle, I would strongly advise you have it checked out by a competent gunsmith first, just to be on the safe side. Ammo for the rifle (usually referred to as "8mm Mauser," formal designation 7.92x57 as Xracer stated) is readily available and relatively cheap; indeed, I shoot several old military Mausers myself and reload for the round as well. The biggest danger with these old guns is the possibility that headspacing (the distance measured from the part of the chamber that stops forward motion of the cartridge, called the datum line, to the face of the bolt) is bad due to excessive use. This can create an overpressure problem that could be dangerous. Generally speaking though, Mauser built one heck of a good rifle and you might have a decent shooter there.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 23, 2007
  6. DWARREN123

    DWARREN123 New Member

    Aug 23, 2003
    Does this rifle fire 7.92X57S or 7.92X57JS ammo? I believe there is quite a differencebetween them is there not.
  7. Popgunner

    Popgunner Active Member

    Dec 3, 2005
    This model shoots the now standard 8x57 JS .323" cartridge.

    The rifle that shoots the 8x57 S .318" cartridge is the 1888 rifle.

    BIGBOOMER New Member

    Sep 19, 2006
    The Great Northwest
    Since your rifle was built in 1906, it fires the .323 "S" bullet. The 1888 Comission rifles used the .318 bullet, as did the early 1898 Mausers. In 1905, Germany converted to higher pressure load with a 152gr spitzer bullet at a much higher velocity. At this time the bullet diameter and groove diameter of the barrels were changed to .323. Most of the '98s and quite a few of the '88s were subsequently altered to use the .323 bullet and were marked with an "S". However, I would not recommend firing a model '88 even with an "S" barrel with high pressure ammo.
    Best regards, BIGBOOMER
  9. Illinoisdon

    Illinoisdon New Member

    Mar 19, 2007
    Thanks for the replys, I can tell you that the 98 is in, at best, fair shape. I believe the action is pretty good but it need a through cleaning and the stock is really rough. My cousin is a gunsmith so he will be checking it out and I plan on refinishing the stock to keep it as original as possible. It appears that the front sight may have been struck by something or the piece was dropped because it has been knocked far right in the mount.

    It belonged to a relative who just passed away and no one in the family knew that he had it until one of his closets was being cleaned out. I will probably offer around 200-250 just because his neice could use the money.

    Thanks again, I look forward to using and contributing to the site in the future.
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