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six 4 sure
January 20, 2005, 05:46 PM
I have an idea for a simple Mauser project and I need a few opinions, suggestions, and answers. The local shop I frequent has a ‘Bubba’ 98 that seems to be calling my name. Its 8mm and it’s German with a hideous stock, but the action appears fine minus some bluing.

What I’d like to do is rebarrel it to .257 Roberts (using an Adams and Bennett barrel). If I understood some of what I’ve been reading, this should make some things easier. I also plan to mount a scope, refinish it, replace the stock, and the trigger. I would like to do most of the work myself. I have everything but a lathe available where I work and access to a better machine shop when it’s needed.

The most obvious question is can a beginner handle this kind of project? From what I’ve read most of it seams pretty straight forward. I own the Kuhnhausen shop manual and the Walsh “how to build your favorite custom rifle” book is on order. The bolt is already bent, but I don’t know if it’s enough to clear a scope. Will tall rings prevent the need to cut and reweld? I assume I’ll also need to buy or borrow head space gauges and a chamber reamer, but is there any other special tools I’ll need? We have a small sand blaster and bead blaster at work. Which one would be best to remove the finish? Cost wise would I be better off having an actual smith do the reaming and head spacing? It looks like the go nogo gages and a reamer are around $150 - $200 and this is the part of the project I’m most concerned I couldn’t handle.

cntryboy1289
January 21, 2005, 03:29 AM
If you feel comfortable with the manual and can take the time, go for it. You will need a way of pulling the barrel without destroying the receiver meaning a barrel vise and receiver wrench and shims for the vise to fit your barrel. You can rent the gauges and chamber reamer for a lot less money than buying them. Have someone at the maching shop lathe up the barrel and chamfer the chamber mouth slightly so it will let the case feed with ease. Take your time and go very slowly with the reamer. Pull it out and blow off the chips and the inside of the barrel very often and try the go gauge. Reoil the reamer before going back in. Make sure you do all of this without banging the reamer around the receiver, because this will ruin the reamer. When you get close with the go gauge, check it every half turn of the reamer. When the bolt closes on the go gauge, check for the no go gauge. If the bolt won't close on the no go gauge, you're home and only need to polish the chamber.

If all of this seems too much, take it to a smith and let him do the chamber work for you. You should be able to handle the rest with simple tools and a lot of patience.

The bolt may be ok as is. If it needs to go down some, you may be able to use the high rings and get by, but you may need to grind on the handle just a little depending on how far out the bend is. The trigger shouldn't be too much trouble, just follow the instructions. As far as removing the finish, it depends on what type of finish you plan to put back on the rifle. If you want a froseted blue, sand blast it and the have it blued, or you could have it parked. That is up to you. PM me if you need anything else.

dfaugh
January 21, 2005, 07:41 AM
are fun....I'm working on my second(this one in 8mm-06)...Did all work myself, but I left #1 in 8x57, as the bore was good, just hadda shorten and re-crown barrel, due to cleaning rod wear.

As far as a reamer, it shouldn't cost that much...Midway and others sell "standard" caliber reamers for about $60-70 IIRC, and gauges for under $30. You can also try eBay, Gunbroker and Gunsamerica (auctions) I got alot my "project" stuff there. (My total outlay for FrankenMauser #1 was $180, including brand new scope and rings). And there are places that'll let you rent a reamer for $20 or so.

The standard Mauser bent bolt probably won't clear a scope unless scope mounted real high(but will depend on the scope)...And I personally find it hard to shoot comfortably with scope mounted that high...But I cut/bent/brazed my bolt handle into shape AFTER I mounted scope, to get best clearance. Mine's a tight fit tho, because I put a really big scope on it. That's why it helps to do the bolt after you've mounted the scope.
My.02

dfaugh
January 21, 2005, 07:46 AM
I forgot to mention that I did this myself with Birchwood-Casey Cold blue. I cleaned up and polished everything real nice. And I get compliments on the bluing job, all the time (as in "Who did the bluing for you"). The key is surface prep(degrease THOUROUGHLY). And its holding up as well as any bluing on any gun I've ever had. If you wanna spend the money for a proffessional bluing job, go for it...but if you wanna do it with minimal cost, the cold blue works just fine IMO.

Jseime
January 26, 2005, 07:59 PM
go for it if you think you can do it and really take the time to make it look good then you've got very little to lose

Clemson
January 27, 2005, 09:05 AM
Excelent choice of project and caliber. The 257 Roberts will feed like the Mauser was made for it (basically it was!).

If there is a doubt on the bolt handle, cut it off and weld on a new one that won't restrict your choice of rings. I don't care for anything higher than "medium."

I built a 257 on an Argentine 1909 receiver for my son. It shoots better than any of my rifles. I'm in the process of checkering the stock now.

Clemson