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  1. #1
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    Default Need help Identifying Martini Schuetzen Rifle

    I recently acquired a very nice Martini Scheutzen target rifle and I need help with identification. This rifle is a single shot falling block with double set triggers, a 29" fluted octagon barrel and an adjustable aperture sight with a magnifying optic in the sight. The bore is bright and shiny with no pitting and the bluing is very strong with just a little scattered speckling. The case color is very good and the engraving has no marks or dings in it. The stock is very nice and has a few handling marks with a couple of small slivers off of the sharp edges but no cracks. There are proof marks on the bottom of the barrel flat, the face of the receiver, the r/side of the trigger group and the r/side of the receiver. There are also some words stamped on either side of the barrel. The receiver, rear sight and barrel are all also marked with a large number "1". I am hoping to find the caliber, year of manufacture, country of origin (German?) , and who the maker was. If possible a value as well. I will post some photos of the markings and the engraving and I have more if needed. Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	520971Thanks for your help. Rick

  2. #2
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    Scone, NSW. Australia
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    Default

    WOW, very nice.

  3. #3
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    Back Creek Valley, WV
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    Very typical of early 20th Century production (so yes German). The cartridge it is chamberred in would actually help to date it. The peak of production of this type was evidently just before WWI and resumed later after the war, but normally (a dangerous generalization) in a plainer fashion. The most popular cartridge in this type/era was 8.75mm x 46mm....but others were available. A chamber cast and posted dimensions would tie it down. Value would be hard to pin down. While this is obviously a high quality rifle, it is also one for which there is little demand. Similar pieces can be found listed in the $2K to $3K range.....and found listed by the same dealer for the same price a year later. For these type of pieces, a major dealer would likely be asking at the upper range and expect to take a long time getting it. A listing on GB or similar forum would bring a much lower price, but a much quicker sale. If you knew its chamberring and if you could describe barrel condition and prove that it still had a Scheutzen target level of accuracy you might move it quicker.
    Last edited by richardwv; 03-04-2012 at 08:37 PM.
    Rich in West Virginia, savoring life one cartridge at a time.

  4. #4
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    Feb 2012
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    Default

    is a chamber casting the best way to determine the caliber? Is commercial ammo available for these?

  5. #5
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    Dec 1969
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    Under the big sky, in the shadow of the Sweetgrass Hills
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    Yes a chamber cast will help.

    I am going to suggest you post your rifle over on http://www.assra.com/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.pl

    Those guys over there are very heavy into this type of rifle . I believe that pic 7 has your cartridge info, but beyond the 7.93 being the caliber, I don't know how to read it.
    Douglas

    "And don't forget. That isn't your Martini you have. It belonged to others before you and will belong to others after you are gone. Look after it, and pass it on with pride. It deserves it." Malcolm Cobb, The Martini Henry Note-book
    *********
    To find things Martini go to: WWW.MartiniHenry.com

  6. #6
    Clyde's Avatar
    Clyde is online now Gold Bullet Member and Noted Curmudgeon
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    Proofs look German - Suhl, I think.

    "Stahl" is German for Steel, so that marking suggests a steel (as in fluid steel) rather than Damascus barrel.

    The 7,93 gives bore (land to land IIRC) diameter. Cartridge will be, probably, one of the many 8mm target rounds. A chamber cast would help nail down which one.

    Looks a wonderful gun. I find myself envious.
    Absent comrades (sound of breaking glass)

  7. #7
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    Nov 2009
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    Right under the proof marks is what appears to be 17228. I believe that this is when the rifle passed proof...17 Feb. 1928. Probable caliber is 8.15x46R, the "standard" Schuetzen caliber of that era. It's easily made from 30-30 or 32 Winchester Special brass, Buffalo Arms has a couple of appropriate bullet moulds (depending on the actual land and groove diameter) and loading data is pretty much what you would use for a fixed ammo 32-40 with similar weight bullets. You'll get more opinions on it over at the ASSRA website, if you can get your photos up there.

    David
    (38_Cal on the ASSRA site)

  8. #8
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    Feb 2011
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    Other likely calibers, should it prove not to be the "standard" 8.15x46R, are 8x40 Sauer and 8x48 Sauer. They were more common as "stalking" rifles than scheutzen rifles tho.

    That is a spectacular rifle. Looks like it might have won a medal or two in its day and stimulated a stein or two as well!

  9. #9
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    Rifle markings:
    B and U and G marks: Individual proofing marks used on Civilian rifles, from 1891 to before 1934.

    Kruppscher Stahl Krupp Steel barrel.

    DRP Deutsches Reich Patente

    DRGM Deutsches Reich Gebrauchs Muster==German Empire Utility Design Registration

    Cartridge: 172,28 is the Gauge Number (Nothing to do with date) still used on German barrels, even after "calibre" numbers introduced, which here is 7,93 mm (Bore diameter,( NOT groove) = .312

    This matches the use of the 8,15x46R Normal-Patrone ( Standard Schuetzen Cartridge.)
    The stocking style and precision aperture rear-sight make it fairly and squarely a Target ( Stand-Schuetzen) Rifle, not a "hunting" Piece of different calibres.

    The Use of all three of the B,U,&G stamps indicate manufacture and proofing well before WW I.

    Regards,
    Doc AV

  10. #10
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    Feb 2012
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    Thankyou for the information. Is the ammunition strictly a reloading cartridge or is there any commercial avaiability?

  11. #11
    Clyde's Avatar
    Clyde is online now Gold Bullet Member and Noted Curmudgeon
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcollins116 View Post
    Thankyou for the information. Is the ammunition strictly a reloading cartridge or is there any commercial avaiability?
    As far as I know, strictly handloading these days. But a fairly easy one. Possible cases are available (Old Western Scrounger was bringing in cases made by RWS when the 7th Ed of CARTRIDGES OF THE WORLD was put out).

    Edit - memory should not be relied upon. LOOK first. Buffalo Arms turns 8.15x46R loaded ammo out. Not cheap, though. $66/box of 20 for one box, reduced to $62.40/box of 20 in five box quantities.

    From Buffalo's web-site:

    This is currently loaded smokeless obsolete ammunition for firearms chambered in 8.15x46R. These are loaded with our reformed cases (#8.15x46R) and our ring shank 160 grain round nose cast bullet (#316160).
    Absent comrades (sound of breaking glass)

  12. #12
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    Montezuma, Iowa
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    Buffalo Arms lists three different bullet moulds for the 8.15x46R, so you may want to do a chamber and bore cast or slug your bore or both. It's pretty much a handloading situation. Where are you located? Might be someone in the single shot community near you who shoots it and can help you get started.

    David

  13. #13
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    Just to clarify what is being said here, do a chamber cast before you go buying reloading supplies.
    Douglas

    "And don't forget. That isn't your Martini you have. It belonged to others before you and will belong to others after you are gone. Look after it, and pass it on with pride. It deserves it." Malcolm Cobb, The Martini Henry Note-book
    *********
    To find things Martini go to: WWW.MartiniHenry.com

  14. #14
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    Feb 2012
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    I live in the Seattle Washington area. I will see if I can find a gunsmith who is able to do a chamber cast and start learning about reloading for this rifle. I would like to see what it shoots like. thanks for your help and suggestions. The bore is so excellent it just has to be a shooter. I just have to figure out what it wants to eat.

  15. #15
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    Nov 2009
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    Montezuma, Iowa
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    Well, I'm a couple of days or so drive to the east of you, but if you go onto the ASSRA website and add to your post that you're looking for someone in that area to help you get started, it's likely that you'll get a few folks in your neighborhood willing to help.

    David

  16. #16
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    Default Making 8,15x46R cases

    Quote Originally Posted by Clyde View Post
    As far as I know, strictly handloading these days. But a fairly easy one. Possible cases are available (Old Western Scrounger was bringing in cases made by RWS when the 7th Ed of CARTRIDGES OF THE WORLD was put out).

    Edit - memory should not be relied upon. LOOK first. Buffalo Arms turns 8.15x46R loaded ammo out. Not cheap, though. $66/box of 20 for one box, reduced to $62.40/box of 20 in five box quantities.

    From Buffalo's web-site:

    This is currently loaded smokeless obsolete ammunition for firearms chambered in 8.15x46R. These are loaded with our reformed cases (#8.15x46R) and our ring shank 160 grain round nose cast bullet (#316160).


    Just a follow up on the Commercially available cases, being RWS (new) and BuffaloArms(?new/formed?)

    The head and rim of the 8,15 is the same as the .30/30 WCF or the 32/40 or the 32Special cases.
    All these donor cases are longer than the 46mm CL of the 8,15.

    I have made 8,15 cases by trimming 30/30 cases from 51mm to 46mm, and then forming the case in a 8,15 FLS die, expanding the neck for the .320 projectile, and loading to fire form.
    I have found that any cast lead Projectile of about 200 grains, and .319 to .324 will work in 8,15 chambered guns...I have a Gew98WehrmannsGewehr in 8,15x46R, and use a Loverin .323 200 grainer with excellent results ( Lyman .323470 mould?).

    Regards,
    Doc AV

    The 32/40 cases , although longer, has almost the same body taper of the 8,15, and can simply be trimmed and foreformed.

  17. #17
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    Forgot to mention, there are some 8.15x46R rifles out there that were built before the cartridge was standardized. They may have a smaller diameter or thinner rim than the later versions, which were often marked 8.15x46R NORM for "normal" to distinguish the version used.

    David

  18. #18
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  19. #19
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    Thank you very much. I will give him a try. Rick

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