After being defeated in World War I Germany was forced to except a wide array of arms and military limitations designed to reduce the Germany military into a small defensive force that could be controlled by the Allied Powers. For example, the German Navy could have only a handful of small warships and submarines were forbidden, the German Army could have no tanks, or large artillery, and was limited to 100,000 men, while a German air force was forbidden completely. While these were strict regulations, often the German government found loopholes or used outright deceit to circumvent the provisions of the treaty. One result of this was the German Karabiner 98B bolt action rifle.
One provision of the treaty was that Germany was forbidden from producing any full length military rifles. At the time, the length of military rifles were almost as long as military muskets from the 19th century. Carbines were seen as inferior, as rigid old military officers still believed in an outdated view of warfare and tactic, despite lessons learned from the previous war. Thus, the Allied Powers sought to restrict rifle length in the Germany Army. The Germans, however, conducted a simple deception to circumvent the rules by producing the Karabiner 98B. The Karabiner (carbine) 98B was not a carbine, even though it was named so. Rather it was a full sized Gewehr 98 bolt action rifle with a few minor modifications. It was labeled as a carbine merely to confuse Versailles Treaty arms inspectors. The K98B differed from the Gew 98 only in that it had a tangent rear sight as opposed to the original “Lange” ramp sight, a wider lower band with side sling attachment bar, a side butt attachment point for a sling, and a turned down bolt handle. Most were merely re-arsenals of older Gewehr 98 rifles, or produced from surplus parts.
The K98B was first introduced in 1923, and became the common arm of the Weimar era German Army. By the 1930s, military doctrine began to change, and what was once carbine length during World War I, became standard rifle length during World War II. Thus in 1935 the German Army phased out the K98B for the Karabiner 98K. Most K98B’s would be disassembled, the parts salvaged for use in the manufacture of newer rifles. As a result the Karabiner 98B is a very rare rifle today, and highly sought by collectors.
Mle 1886 ‘Lebel’ Rifle - “Fusil de 8mm Modèle 1886″
Designed in 1886, produced from 1887 to 1920 by MAC, MAT and MAS. 8x50mmR Lebel, 8+1+1 rounds.
Read below for everything you wanted to know about this rifle, and then more, and then even more, Jippers you didn’t need to know all that, what the fuck it’s still going, why did they keep it for this long, just let the fucking thing die already.
By the 1950’s the Spanish, like most nations, were seeking a new semi-auto battle rifle or fully automatic assault rifle to replace their near obsolete bolt actions. The Spanish chose the CETME, a select fire semi auto/fully automatic rifle fed from a detachable magazine and chambered in 7.62 CETME. The CETME helped modernized the Spanish Army, however there was a problem. A complex and expensive rifle, there were not enough CETME rifle’s to arm the entire Spanish military. The new rifle was issued by priority, which often meant that less important units such as reserves, militia, police, and other rear echelon units did not have access to the rifle.
In order to sure up the numbers, the Spanish military turned to the idea of modernizing their massive arsenals of bolt action rifles. After the bloody Spanish Civil War and World War II (Spain was neutral), the Spanish military was in possession of tens of thousands of Mauser type bolt action rifles. Many of the rifles were taken out of storage, re-arsenalled, and modified to serve as a reserve arm. The rifles were shortened into a more compact carbine length, new sights were mounted, and caliber was modified. The FR7 and FR8 were very similar to each other, with the FR7 being built from Spanish Model 1893 Mauser actions while the FR8 was produced from 98 Mauser actions. A flash suppressor was installed, which was compatible with the firing of NATO type rifle grenades. A bayonet mount for modern bayonets was also included. What looks to be a gas tube is actually a storage compartment for a cleaning kit. The most important modification of the FR7 and FR8 was in caliber. Modified from 7x57 and 8x57mm Mauser, the FR7 was chambered in 7.62 CETME, while the FR8 was chambered in 7.62 NATO. This was so that the rifles would share common caliber with the Spanish military as well as NATO.
First produced in the late 1950’s, the FR7 and FR8 was used by the Spanish military and the Guardia Civil (National Police) up through the 1970’s. After being fully phased out, most were sold on the civilian market as military surplus, making popular hunting rifles and collectibles. Back in the day they used to be cheap and plentiful on the milsurp market, today they are becoming fairly scarce.
Mauser Karabiner 98 kurz bolt-action rifle, fitted with a ZF41 scope
Manufactured by Mauser-Borsigwalde c.1943 Germany, serial number 6908d. Scope manufactured by Emil Busch, serial number 116885. 7,92x57mm Mauser, 5-rounds internal magazine, original leather sling. Kar98k snipers were rifles that proved exceptionally accurate during trial and, as befitting of the cream of the Mauser production, were fitted in factory with a rail and a scope to be issued to marksmen of the Wehrmacht. This configuration was reported to be effective at ranges up to one kilometer. Additionally these guns could be fitted with a HUB-23 suppressor, which in conjunction with the Nahpatrone Mauser subsonic cartridge could reduce the noise of the rifle down by 75% for covert operations.
Germany's Last Ditch Weapons --- The Desperation Weapons of the Volkssturm
By the end of 1944 it was clear that Germany was going to lose World War II. The United States had beaten back Germany’s offensive in the Ardennes, while the Soviets were calling on Germany’s back door. In desperation, Hitler and the Nazi’s formed a special militia unit called the Volkssturm, citizen soldiers who would serve as Germany’s last line of defense. Since most men of fighting age had already been drafted into the military, most of the Volkssturm was comprised of old men and children.
Due to a shortage of weapons, the Volkssturm was often equipped with inferior and second hand weapons. Often they were armed with foreign weapons captured during the war, with little ammunition available. However Germany also produced a line of desperation weapons; indigenous weapons specifically made to arm the Volkssturm. Such weapons were crudely built, manufactured to be somewhat functional while requiring a few resources and manpower to manufacture.
Produced by Walther, the VG-1 would have been an excellent rifle if it had been made with quality. The VG-1 was a simple bolt action rifle made a cheaply as possible. The stock was hastily carved and unfinished, often lacking a buttplate. Sights were fixed and unadjustable, being sighted in for only 100 meters. While standard Kar98k rifle used by the regular military used 5 round fixed magazine, the VG-1 utilized a 5 round detachable magazine produced from K43 parts. While this might seem like an advantage, in reality it was not a the rifle was so poorly made it was difficult to remove the magazine. Most were only issued with one magazine, and Volkssturm were trained to load it with stripper clips. Interesting, as part of Germany’s cost cutting measures, the bolt handle lacks a knob. Barrels were typically factory rejects or salvaged barrels from shot out machine guns. As a result of this the VG-1 had substandard accuracy which hampered it practicality. They were chambered in 8X57 Mauser and 8mm Kurz (7.92X33). Overall the VG1 served it purpose. While crude and substandard it was still a functional firearm. They cost $5 a piece to make.
The VG-2 was an improvement upon the VG1, with many features in common including a detachable five round magazine. However the main difference was that the VG-2 used a receiver produced of stamped metal, whereas the VG-1 used a milled receiver. The VG-2 also increased production by using salvaged stocks Kar 98K rifles for the buttstock and forearm. Like the VG-1 the VG-2 was often manufactured using factory reject or shot out barrels, hence accuracy suffered. Incredibly, the VG-2’s bolt handle came complete with a knob.
The simplest of Volkssturm weapons, the VK-98 was a simple rifle which used the venerated 98 Mauser action, most of which were salvaged from other firearms. It was as simple as a rifle could get and was made to be a functional firearm at its most basic level. Again, the stock was typically solid hardwood, hastily carved into shape and commonly lacking finish. It had no buttplate and the barrel was fashioned into place with only two pins. The barrel was typically a shot out barrel salvaged from an older rifle, or a factory reject. Sight were fixed and were nonadjustable. All over the rifle and stock can be found tool marks from the rifle’s production, left glaring and unfinished. Worst yet, the VK-98 lacked a magazine. It was single shot only, with the user manually loading a cartridge after each shot. The VK-98 fired the 8mm Kurz cartridge, the same cartridge used by the famous STG-44 assault rifle. It was hoped that the light cartridge would be easier to fire by old men and children who had little firearms experience.
The Gustloff Volkssturmgewehr 1-5
During World War II, the Germans created the STG-44, an assault rifle which utilized fine engineering, quality materials, and quality manufacturing. Then they came up with the Volkssturmgewehr, which was the antithesis of the STG-44. The Volkssturmgewehr was similar in conception to the STG-44; an assault rifle using an intermediate cartridge (8mm Kurz) which was a compromise between a submachine gun and a high power rifle. The Volkssturmgewehr, however, was the Volkssturm’s assault rifle, made to be cheap and easy to produce. Like other Volkssturm weapons, it was produced from substandard materials using substandard workmanship. It was simple and functional (barely), but little else. Most of the weapon was produced from stamped sheet metal. The stock and furniture was salvaged from other firearms. The magazine was a regular 30 round STG-44 magazine. Some variants included a wooden pistol grip, most didn’t. Unlike the STG-44, it could fire in full auto mode only, it did not have a semi auto selector switch, nor did it have a safety. Sights again were non-adjustable.
While having a fully automatic assault rifle may seem like an advantage during WWII, in reality it was a terrible liability. Unlike the STG-44, accuracy with the Volkssturmgewehr was terrible. Due to its poor workmanship and use of substandard metals, it also suffered from poor reliability, was vulnerable to dust, dirt, and moisture, and broke down easily. Around 10,000 were produced.
The Volkssturm and their weapons could do little to stem the tide of the Allied onslaught. After World War II, most Volkssturm weapons were melted down as scrap metal. Few soldiers took them as war trophies, seeing them as worthless junk. Today surviving Volkssturm weapons are highly collectible and can be valued at thousands of dollars due to their rarity and novelty.
- Country: Germany. - Period of activity: 1934. - Dimensions: Overall length: 1110mm. Canyon: 600mm. - Size: 7.92mm x 57 (8 x 57 mm versions shooter). - Initial speed: 745 m / s.
In 1934 the German army was looking for a compact and universal indestructible weapon to equip all their bodies. This task was entrusted to Sauer and Mauser companies, whichever is the latter model, called KAR 98K.
This rifle repeated manual measuring 1110 mm and weighed 3.8 kg without ammunition, also had an adjustable height of 50 rising 50 m, starting at 100 and ending at 2 Km. The charger was five cartridges that could be made one one or all five at once using a comb.
Undoubtedly the most remarkable feature was its sliding KAR 98K rotating shutter (lock) and long barrel (600 mm), which provided high precision over long distances, which is why it was used by snipers.
Visors such as ZF41 1.5x or 4x Ajack were mainly used. The only feature that distinguished them from other KAR 98K rifles was his highest caliber; 8 x 57 x 7.92 instead of 57, and using selected ammunition.
- Country: Germany. - Period of activity: 1943. - Dimensions: Overall length: 1117mm. Canyon: 545mm. - Size: 7.92mm x 52. - Initial speed: 776 m / s.
The Gewehr was the only German semi-automatic rifle produced on a large scale. Conspicuous by its robustness, reliability and precision, although this last feature you exceeded bolt-action rifles. He used the powerful cartridge 7.92 x 57 Mauser in packs ten bullets.
Its most notable feature was its operation for recovery of gases that gave him a rate of more than repeated manual fire rifles. Some models were equipped for precision shooting with 1.5x ZF4 viewer.
- Country: United States. - Activity period: 1903-1957. - Dimensions: Overall length: 1140mm. - Size: 30-06 Springfield. - Initial speed: 732 m / s.
American rifle repeated manual. Features include his long-barreled 610 mm two grooves, which gave him a muzzle velocity of 732 m / s. Food was similar to the Mauser; She is using a comb five cartridges that are introduced through the bolt.
It was used during World War II by American snipers; for these versions “blind”, the telescope of 2.5x signing Weaver, called 330C and powerful 8x Unertl was used.
Later, during the Korean War this viewer was replaced by the M84 in better performance.
Enfield nº4 MKI (T)
- Country: England. - Period of activity: 1939. - Dimensions: Overall length: 1129mm. Canyon: 640mm. - Caliber: .303 (7.7mm) - Initial speed: 751 m / s.
Considered one of the best bolt-action rifles of WWII, the Enfield No. 4 MK I (T) was conspicuous by its extreme reliability, easy maintenance and excellent accuracy. Like other Enfield sniper rifles it was also used by sharpshooters.
The models used for this purpose had the designation “T” and differed from the rest of Enfield rifles that their reposamejillas could be adjusted to suit the shooter. Chargers used cartridges and rode ten visors Aldis. Among the visors used include Model No. 32 of 4x
Tokarev SVT 40
- Country: Soviet Union. - Dimensions: Overall length: 1220mm. Canyon: 625mm. - Size: 7.62 mm - Initial speed: 830 m / s.
Soviet semi-automatic rifle with a magazine capacity ten cartridges. The Tokarev rifle was not very appreciated by the Soviet snipers by some of its flaws: from 200 m accuracy was not very good, while shooting the sharp flash of the muzzle betrayed the position of the shooter, and the effect kick it prevented making a second shot on the target if the first one was wrong. These problems meant that in October 1941 the Tokarev was removed from the production line. Such rifle was used with the PU scope .42 3.5x.
- Country: Soviet Union. - Dimensions: Overall length: 1220mm. Canyon: 620mm. - Size: 7.62 mm - Initial speed: 865 m / s.
Soviet rifle manual action, charger and five cartridges. The models used by Soviet snipers were selected among the most accurate, the barrel was of high quality, not mounted bayonet and had the bolt upright unlike other rifles in which this was in a horizontal position, this was due it looks hindered the path of the bolt, also happened with the loading rifle cartridge had to take place in cartridge it looks prevented since entering the traditional comb. These versions were available 3 models viewer; PE 31 and PE 31/37 both 4x and 3.5x PU 42.
- Country: Japan. - Dimensions: Overall length: 1280mm. - Period of activity: 1937 - 1945 - Size: 6.5 mm
Japanese manual action rifle with a capacity of five cartridges and charger 2.5telescopic sight increases. Type 97 sniper rifles rode a folding leg version under the barrel to increase accuracy in shooting also another feature to note it is that the bolt is located on the left side unlike other rifles of WWII.