View Full Version : Barrel Makers

June 10, 2000, 12:25 PM
A friend has brought over an old Mauser 88. An 8mm carbine and wants to change calibers. What would make this possible. I suggested leaving it alone, not real sure why!
Could this be done? He wants to fix it up for his daughter to hunt dear with.
so as far a caliber that would not require bolt modification etc I wouldnt know what to suggest

George Stringer
June 10, 2000, 04:08 PM
Tom, is this an 88 or a 98? If it a GEW88 I'd leave it alone. If it's a 98, then I'd go with a .257 Roberts, .243 Win, .308 Win depending on terrain and recoil sensitivity of the user. Mount a scope, install a low scope safety, adjustable trigger. Put it in a Ramline synthetic or a Boyd's walnut stock and glass bed. If you start with a decent barrel and install it or have it installed correctly you'll have a very accurate rifle. If your friend is looking for a gunsmith to do the work, e-mail me and I'll send you a quote. George

Gun Toter
June 12, 2000, 03:12 PM
The GEW88 is not that strong of an action compared to the 98 so it would be advisable to not mess with it. When the barrel jacket is unscrewed from it there is an area of the receiver left with visible threads so it would look kind of bad as a sporting rifle, if you rebarrelled it. If you do decide to rebarrel it, make it a light round.

The biggest drawback though is the magazine. It requires a stripper clip for it to function. Not many other calibers will work other than the 8mm Mauser. Make sure if you do shoot the GEW88 as is, it uses a smaller sized bullet than the standard 8X57. It ises a .318" diameter bullet while the standard round is .323". Using military surplus ammo currently available will probably lead to a blow up sometime down the line.

Gun Toter

El Chimango Pete
June 12, 2000, 09:35 PM
Here in Mauser country - in Argentina both the '88 and later the '98 were ordnace issue until replaced byt the FAL in the early sixties - at this time i'm putting together a '98 action with a Shilen barrel in 308 (the 7.65 Arg, very similar to 30-06 is good but ammo is very limited).

Shilen provide pre-threaded barrels of excellent quality - check out their website. Douglas is another option and i'm sure there are more - Most times, only the headspace has to be checked out carefully with good 'go-nogo' gauges; corrections made if necessary.
Fa' sure the 88 was a weaker action - but with reasonable loads... a good gunsmith - the conditon of the gun should be checked out.
I dont mind sacrificing the 'stripper clip' (though nice in combat wouldn't think it necessary for a deer hunt) and the chamber is easily accesible under my Swarovski 6x42 'scope on Millet 'medium' rings. The mauser mag loads easy and smooth, round by round.

On the other hand, a friend just made a dandy 'Pseudo Scout' out of a '98, with the scope way ahead of the magazine port, keeps the stripper clip as the scope is way out front there. Shoots real nice if one cares for the concept.

With a Plain Old Scope (back where they used to be up by the eye), bolt should be dropped a little - could knock up close to the tube. Also the safety may get in the way. There are some 'quater turn' safeties that work ok (under the scope, on the bolt sleeve at ones left hand) - else (and a good idea replace the trigger - sloppy in the military Mauser, with one that has a safety - such as Timney's - you would then have to have the bolt sleeve replaced - an easy operation. There are also Winchester Mod 70 type safeties avaialbele for the Mauser - another good choice. IMHO, replace the trigger anyway, for a Timney or Jewell or whatever.

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