View Full Version : Steel Used in Mauser Actions

Harry Bonar
January 5, 2006, 09:10 AM
Dear Shooters:
I've finally found an authoritative source on the steel the Germans, and others, used in the military Mauser actions. P.O. Ackley says:
"Bolt actions manufactured in Europe and other parts of the world are usually made of carbon steel which sometimes corresponds to our SAE 1040 or 1045 (the 10 means it's a carbon steel and the 40-45 means that it contains 40 - 45 'points' of carbon - addition mine) (that's .4% carbon)
This material is heat treated in a different manner than the alloy steels."

"Carbon steel, when used for rifle actions, is carburized, case hardened and pack hardened."
He says that this imparts a hard "skin" that resists wear and set-back.
No one knows for sure but this is the best I can find!
Harry B.

January 5, 2006, 01:52 PM
I have had a couple heat treated by the folks at:


I haven't had a problem with any of the ones they have done for me.

January 5, 2006, 02:35 PM
I've heard anything from 1035-1045 and it probably did vary.I would recarburize any old Mauser especially the wartime ones like mine to be safe and avoid setback if it hadn't been done correctly originally. www.pacmet.com is considered the best place to have it done . They have lots of experience with them.

January 5, 2006, 03:04 PM
"Gold is for the mistress,
Silver for the maid,
Copper for the craftsman
Cunning at his trade.
'Good', said the Baron, sitting in his hall,
'But iron, cold iron, is the master of them all.'"

Rudyard Kipling

Harry Bonar
January 9, 2006, 07:38 PM
Dear mete and shooters:
I'm beginning top think about having an action re-heat-treated.
In the past I've been totally against it - but - in the hands of a good "heat-treater" who knows what a decalesence temperature is and a pyrometer - I just might try one.
Even "old dogs" can learn new tricks - I usually stick to Turk 38s' and VZ24s' so don't really run into any soft ones.
I wonder what carburizing medium they use?

I have a confession: years ago I had a "soft" Mauser with some set-back. I plugged the reciever ring so the "hard and tuff" wouldn't run out and slowly brought that action up to a good red color and kept it there for quite a while - I used a water quench with some oil on top and it turned out fine. I've not told that before. I barreled it to 308 (52,000 cup) and never had trouble again with it.

January 9, 2006, 08:43 PM
I'm sure Pacmet does it by gas carburizing. It really doesn't make sense to go to all the trouble and expense of customizing a rifle then have it set back.Be safe and sure !