Bolt Action:What is your opinion about the Mauser k98k?

Discussion in 'General Rifle Discussion' started by Mark_Van_Goth, Dec 1, 2013.

  1. Mark_Van_Goth

    Mark_Van_Goth New Member

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    What is your opinion about the Mauser k98k and the Mauser 98 action?
    What would you change of its design?Would you use it to built a modern sniper rifle?If yes, what would you do?
     
  2. Hawg

    Hawg New Member

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    The 98 action is a very good/strong action to build on IF you can find one cheap enough. Its not cheap anymore to build on a military action. It would be cheaper to buy a Winchester or Remington and go from there.
     

  3. JTJ

    JTJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Great action but get a CZ550 if you want the Mauser action. Unless you are doing all the work yourself it does not pay to build anymore. I have seen some beautiful custom rifles on 98 actions that were selling for a small fraction of what they cost to build.
     
  4. Argyle_Armoring

    Argyle_Armoring New Member

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    My lieutenant and I have been looking for a German made K98 in great condition for a while now and haven't found one we like.
     
  5. chloeshooter

    chloeshooter New Member

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    Look around for an older Ruger M77, same basic action
     
  6. Mark_Van_Goth

    Mark_Van_Goth New Member

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    Really?Maybe I have the same problem.During the war(in yugoslavia), I have seen several almost unknown custom mausers that were used by the snipers in Sarajevo.These rifle looked like sporterized models of the zastava 98/48(refurbished k98k) and the later M48.If you want a cheap, fully operational, cheap k98k that is in good conditions, the you should take a look at the zastava m98/48.Frankly speaking:I used this rifle in combat in the '90, a scoped one(mounts for zrak optics).It's a great shooter, even if the bullet trajectory is far from being the flatest one.
     
  7. Mark_Van_Goth

    Mark_Van_Goth New Member

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    Well...I want a custom one, so I'm going to build one by myself.I'm seeking for some ideas by more experienced operators
     
  8. greydog

    greydog Member

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    The CZ550 is more like a Mauser 98 than others but it is not a 98. It does have some 98 Mauser features but so do a lot of others. The breeching system of the CZ550 is like that of the 98. It has an internal barrel seat (c-ring) and the bolt head is enclosed by this ring when in battery. The magazine system of the CZ is more like that of the pre-64 Model 70 Winchester as is the extractor and bolt stop. The striker, bolt sleeve, and trigger are strictly CZ and are unique to it.
    From the standpoint of functionality, the 98 covers a lot of bases and does it very well. It was designed to be a rugged, foolproof system and it is that. Any compromises were made on the side of reliability.
    From a pure accuracy standpoint, the 98 has some perceived shortcomings. There is a shortage of bedding surface; especially at the tang. The receiver, with it's thumb notch, is not particularily rigid. The striker is heavy and lock time isn't all that quick but ignition is positive.
    The breeching system is an excellent one with the barrel seated against the inner collar and the bolt head recessed within this collar. The mauser was designed to vent gases in the event of a case failure. This is a design which is functional and safe but which sacrifices some parts in such a situation. Blow a case in a Mauser and you will, most likely, not be hurt but you will be missing the extractor and possibly the magazine follower and floorplate. The Ruger 77 follows Mauser principles in gas handling.
    Mauser invented the staggered column magazine and it has been the basis for most magazine systems since then. Much is made of the controlled round feeding of the Mauser. The Mauser was designed to feed out of the magazine and cartridge feeds up behind the extractor as the cartridge is stripped from the magazine. Mauser's idea here was to prevent double loading. That is, to make it impossible to try and feed a cartridge without extracting and ejecting the one in the chamber. For some reason, this was perceived as being a real concern. A by product of this was that the Mauser doesn't do well when a cartridge is put into the chamber ahead of the extractor although this can be managed. Polishing the leading edge of the extractor hook can make single loading possible and there is no reason not to do so. The Springfield and Enfield rifles addressed this as have most subsequent designs.
    Extraction is a Mauser strongpoint. The extractor hook is wide and the extractor groove in the bolt head is undercut to match the angle on the extractor tongue so that increased pressure against the extractor causes it to be held in more tightly. Ejection is handle by a blade which is enclosed within the bolt stop housing and which passes through a slot cut through the left locking lug. The 98 ejects straight out to the side. In theoryand in fact, the slotted lug weakens the lock-up but I have not seen an instance where this was critical since the action is still more than sufficiently strong.
    The original trigger is a two-stage, direct-acting type where the trigger pulls the sear away from the cocking piece to fire the rifle. This contrasts with the overriding sear type of trigger where the trigger allows the striker to over ride the sear. From the standpoint of stone-reliabilty, I don't think the original trigger can be beat but there is a limit to how light and crisp the trigger pull can be. All after-market triggers (Timney, Bold, Dayton-Traister, etc.) are of the over riding sear variety. Not as foolproof but adjustable and offering a trigger fubction which is more agreeable to most shooters.
    Now, can the Mauser 98 be used to build a modern sniper rifle? Yes and no. A rifle built on a 98 can be accurate enough though probably not quite as accurate as a Remington 700 based rifle like the M24 or M40. The Canadian forces used a rifle based on a commercial 98 action for many years and these rifles were very capable and shot as well as could be expected given the potential of the ammunition they used. Shooting Lake City Match, the Parker-Hale rifle used by the Canadians would approach minute-of-angle accuracy. The use of the Mauser is also a little bit awkward because of the necessity to load from the top. The adaptation of an M14 magazine system would be a big help in this regard.
    If starting with a military 98, it is, of course, necessary to alter the bolt handle and safety to allow the mounting of a scope. This is best accomplished by cutting of the original handle and welding on a replacement. Some have simply forged the original handle to a lower angle but this results in a handle which is too short. By the way, one also wants to avoid installing a handle which is too long as this will increase the tendency for the bolt to bind during operation.
    All in all, building a rifle a a Mauser can be a rewarding exercise. While not the ideal for a state-of-the-art build, the Mauser can make a rugged, reliable, and functional rifle.
    I have been gunsmithing professionally for over 35 years and in that time I have NEVER seen a broken firing pin on a Mauser. I have NEVER seen a broken ejector or spring. I have seen one broken extractor but it had been improperly modified. I have seem Mausers which were overloaded, fired with the wrong ammunition, and abused in various ways yet none were destroyed beyond the possibility of repair.
    I would not use a Mauser to build a longe range rifle in 338 Lapua or 300 Win Mag. I would use a Mauser to build a 7.62 rifle. I would adapt it to use the M14 magazine and I would build it to weigh not more than ten pounds, all up. I would scope it with a good 10x scope in a rugged mount (weaver type bases and the ring of choice). I would use a Timney trigger. I would stock it in glass with a MacMillan stock being my first choice.
    An alternative, for a fun rifle, would be to do an interpretation of the Canadian Forces rifle. By the way, I see these Parker-Hale rifles for sale occasionally and they are an intertesting rifle in their own right.
    My primary interest is in sporting rifles and looking at it from that viewpoint, my first choice for a rugged, reliable, rifle for hunting is a Mauser. My choice for an action upon which to build an accuracy rifle is a Remington 700. My choice for action on which to build an Amercan classic hunting rifle is a Winchester Model 70. All of this information is given on a "for what it's worth" basis! GD
     
  9. gunsmoke11

    gunsmoke11 New Member

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    Most of the finest custom bolt actions in the world have used the '98 Mauser action and for good reason. They've been around the longest and used on game like deer, as well as the most dangerous and largest game from all over the world. I'd call that proven and basically you get what you pay for. It certainly has it's competition out there, but the Mauser action will always be my first choice. I own several, but here are just three examples. #1 Custom Griffin & Howe Mauser .270, #2 WJ Jeffrey take down .333 Nitro Express, #3 German Custom Mauser .375 H&H.

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  10. Axxe55

    Axxe55 The Apocalypse Is Coming.....

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    there have been a lot of rifle designs over the last 100 years or so based off the Mauser action. with good reason. it was very well designed and it worked well.

    lots of custom rifle builders have built many custon hunting rifles off the Mauser actions and those of the Mauser design.

    i have owned a few Mauser actioned rifles over the years and have enjoyed them very much. wouldn't pass one up if i could afford it for sure. for me, it's the nostalgia of them that pulls me in. they are just a timeless and beautiful rifle design that has been proven many times over.
     
  11. texaswoodworker

    texaswoodworker New Member

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    Drool... ...
     
  12. jpattersonnh

    jpattersonnh Active Member

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    I am not sure you are talking the K98k. The K98k receiver has plenty of bedding surface, the receiver walls are thicker then an M700, so the thumb cut is a none issue. The bolt is already bent, so not sure why it would have to be modified. Handling gas from a ruptured cartridge also was addressed w/ the 2 elongated holes on the bolt body. I think the 700 is far inferior to the '98 Mauser or Howa 1500 action.

    The Norwegians used K98 snipers into 2000.
    Some actions from Mauser Karabiner 98k left by German armed forces in 1945 were used by Kongsberg Våpenfabrikk (currently Kongsberg Small Arms) for building both military and civilian sniper/target rifles under the Kongsberg Våpenfabrikk Skarpskyttergevær M59 - Mauser M59 and Kongsberg Våpenfabrikk Skarpskyttergevær M67 - Mauser M67 designations. These rifles were used by the Norwegian armed forces up to the 2000s.

    Loading from the bottom in a prone position requires the shooter to turn the rifle sideways, while the Mauser internal box can have 1-2-3-4-5 rounds popped in while operating the bolt.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2013
  13. Hawg

    Hawg New Member

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    Because it comes straight out from the center of the bolt body and is then curved down. For scope clearance it needs to come off the bolt at an angle and have the top portion scalloped.

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  14. jpattersonnh

    jpattersonnh Active Member

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    Really??

    No it does not!

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  15. Hawg

    Hawg New Member

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    It does if you want any sort of cheek weld. I don't want to stretch my neck that far to look through a scope.:D
     
  16. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    mauser created the mauser action but everyone else does it better.

    the mauser itself is the last of the mauser types i would use to build off.

    one of the issues with a mauser action is the slow lock time which is why you seldom see them being used for precision rifles. in the 60's to the early 90's lots of folks used them for such because you could get them in like new condition for next to nothing. much like the mosin they were popular cuz they were stupid cheap.

    since the supply of even decent mauser k98 actions dried up 2 decades ago its no longer feasible to build off one when you can get better for the same price or cheaper actions more suitable for accuracy builds

    now that doesnt mean i dont like the action type i adore it but not the german version. i prefer winchester, springfield, and cz's take on it. much better done
     
  17. greydog

    greydog Member

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    I don't know that I would say the Springfield take on it is better done. They substituted a fragile firing pin, an inferior breeching system, and a less- robust receiver. Winchester stayed with the Springfield breeching system but did speed up lock time and eliminated the slotted lug. There is a trade off here. The lock time is better but ignition is not as certain. The elimination of the slotted lug is a positive move although having the bolt stop and ejector inside the stock means the stock inletting means removing more wood and weakening the stock.
    The lack of rigidity of the military 98 is primarily because of the thumb notch. A commercial action (FN, Parker-Hale, Interarms etc.) should be at least as rigid as a 700 but not as rigid as a Model 70. A cz is about the same as a Model 70.
    I consider locktime to be largely meaningless in the big picture and can explain my reasoning if pressed. GD
     
  18. nitestalker

    nitestalker New Member

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    When has lock time been an issue in a hunting rifle. Hell even a flint lock is and was fast enough to take game. The Bench shooters complaint has become the gun shop experts "Big" bit of knowledge.
    The DWM 1909 Argentine remains a great action to this day.;)
     
  19. jigs-n-fixture

    jigs-n-fixture Well-Known Member Lifetime Supporter

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    I have a 257AI, built on a Mauser 98. It has shot 5/8-inch, five shot groups for thirty years now. It might shoot tighter than that, but that is just about the limit of my ability to hold the rifle.

    It definitely has a preference for the old Nosler 120-grain Solid Base bullets in the red box. I have about another five hundred of them. They are hard to find and if you have any you want to sell let me know.

    My rifle has a Timney trigger, a Lisle safety, and a Tubb speedlock firing pin and spring, and a Weaver K-856 scope. The action is glass bedded, and the barrel free floated. The stock is foam filled fiberglass, but I don't know who made it.

    It is a highly accurate hunting rifle and will put 20 out of 20 into a 6x16 gong, (minute of deer), at three hundred all day.

    It is not a "sniper rifle", but that could be in part because of the bullets available in 25-cailiber. It shoots well out to about 450, but then things start spreading out fast.