I'm not a sporter guy, then I find this...........
My LGS guy calls me today and says 'I got somethin' here you'll want'. I rush on over, and he pulls this out of a gun case. It started life as a 1917 V. Schilling Suhl Gew 98. Apparently is now in 9x57. OIGEE Berlin 2 1/2 x 100131 scope. No 'GEW 98' on siderail, looks as though it was never marked that way. Numbers are 1009 on buttplate, and 09 is on every screw and on the bolt release. No serial number on receiver or barrel. '2,7 G.E.P.' is crossed out on receiver, 'St. m.g.' over '18,3 Gr.' shows. Double set triggers. Looks as though the original stock was shortened and checkered. Supposedly this was brought back during the Second World War. So what do I have here? Is it a 'JAGER' rifle? 'Stalker' rifle? Is it possible that an actual sniper rifle was used to build this? I've never seen a Mauser like this......except at the end of the 1930 film 'All Quiet On The Western Front'....a French sniper uses one very similar to this one to kill poor Paul Baumer. (Yeah, filmmakers...)
St m g is Stahl-mantel Geschoss, meaning a steel jacketed bullet weighing 18.3 grams. The lined out mark above it, 2,7 GBP means Gewehr Blattchen Pulver, which is 2.7 grams of Rifle Flake Powder. Likely the rifle was reproved at one point, and they struck out the old load. If you pull the barreled action out of the stock, there will likely be the remainder of the proof marks.
My own opinion, which is not an authority, would be that this was built POST WWI, using a VC Schilling receiver that had not been built. Probably by someone in the Suhl gun trade. Markings on the barrel may point in one or more directions, but not likely.
Additionally I do not think it was from a Gew 98. The receiver has no acceptance or firing marks on it. Now, the stock, bottom metal, screws, etc, may have been salvaged from a "destroyed" rifle.
Additionally, I think it is an AWESOME rifle. Thank you for sharing. I am frankly jealous as my LGS gets nothing of the sort. Well, it may, but no one will know until the owner dies and his estate is auctioned off.
your OP hinted at hopes this may have originally been a military sniper piece.the chances of that having been are slim and none. Fal's description is probably quite accurate. still a desirable item,as evidenced by comments already made here.cheers.
I would say in my opinion, this is a pretty typical Suhl sporter job. They MAY have used a Gewehr 98, or at least pieces of one. The barrel does show steel lot codes as a 98 barrel would and a caliber marking. Likely a left over blank or possibly, this was a rifle that was in production and was never completed.
A gentleman from Germany who has taught me a great deal always says, Suhl Gunmakers, big or small, never threw ANYTHING away.
Looking through my notes I would add this. The 2,7 GBP was the original proving in 8x57, though it is missing its nitro proof marks. This rifle may have been "assembled" at the end of the war, as the proof houses did not come back online until sometime in the early 20's. Don't have that date in front of me. The 2,7 GBP marking was lined out when it was re rifled, and reproved. Based on what I have been taught, the rifle went through the proof houses in Janaury of 1925. Something about that doesn't sit right with me though. It should have a repair proof. And the 2,7 GBP would be a pre 1912 marking, and should have guage markings on the bottom of the barrel.
Are there any other proof markings on the bolt? any other markings at all anywhere on the gun?
Interesting piece none the less. I would recommend posting it on the German Gun Collectors Association forum. There are many FAR more knowledgeable people there.
regular lurker here, but first time poster.... Also looks like a sporterized military stock, given the location of the swivel and disk in the stock.....
Yeah, I noticed that, and the barrel is "stepped", like a military barrel. Look near the front sling swivel.
Probably a sporterized military '98 Mauser, or made from military-intended parts.
If you want a similar rifle, but without the dried wood and rust, Waffen Frankonia sells them or has, in recent times. They used to do an export business with US customers; may still.
You'd have a new rifle and a more common caliber. They def. offered 7X57mm and I think, 8x57S. If you want to feel like a German settler in pre-WWI in Tanganyika or German SW Africa (now Namibia), those should suit you. These have surplus M-98 actions, but the stocks and barrels are new commercial ones.
I think quite a few such rifles also sold to British settlers, as most couldn't afford the very expensive rifles from Rigby, H & H, etc. Many Germans remained in Namibia, and after South Africa took over administration of SW Africa until rather recent times, they'd have continued to use these arms and similar, later ones.. German is still widely spoken there, maybe as common as Afrikaans. To see a current white Namibian girl, look at Behati Prinsloo, the Victoria's Secret model married to Maroon 5's frontman Adam Levine. If I'm ever lucky enough to get her autograph in a local shop appearance, I must recall to ask if she speaks German. Has excellent English with a US accent, unlike her pal Candice Swanepoel, who does sound South African. Both are in many videos and interviews on YouTube.
If you just want a good hunting rifle, the wares of Winchester, Sako, and CZ will easily fill the need. Well, those are my favorites. Many others have their followers, of course.
Frankly, I wouldn't buy a rifle in this condition. The 'scope is not by a famous maker and is likely fogged internally. That happens to a LOT of used optics that have been left in a hot car, etc.
I think the 9X57 ctg. MAY still be loaded. I believe it's discussed in John Taylor's, African Rifles and Cartridges and of course in, Cartridges of the World by Frank Barnes and later authors. (Barnes is deceased, but the title has been updated since.)
The president of Fallkniven knives told me a few years ago that he wanted a more powerful rifle than his 6.5X55 after bears began appearing where he hunts. I think he said the new rifle is a 9x57, so it's evidently still loaded in Sweden. I think a .35 Whelen is a better choice.
Thanks for the photos. Those old rifles certainly served many a hunter, in both Europe and in colonial Africa. Pity that this one is in such bad condition.
An interesting conversion and in better condition than some may believe. (No offense Lone Star.) But, it is a sporterized rifle so I am moving it, sorry infantryguy, but I'm sure others will find it interesting along with those that can follow it from this forum.