View Full Version : Hunting the German K 98 8 mm mauser

chow chow
April 29, 2008, 10:21 AM
To those who have used this surplus rifle , how does it perform on game? I ve watched some TV documentary about some explorers going into the Arctic Cap . They brought along extreme cold survival gears , sled dogs and most of all a K 98 for bear protection. Yeah , of all the modern rifles of today its the rugged German karabiner using open sights. They showed them practicing aiming and firing. I guess the 8 mm (32 cal) has some big ole punch to put them down. Besides these were the European reliables that we were facing on the NOrmandy landing.

But looking at the ballistics , they dont have the best in BC. They lose steam farther out unlike the .3006.

April 29, 2008, 10:36 AM
I am in the market for an 8mm rifle as well, I was all set to buy a 98K when further research brought me to the yugo seris of rifles both the M-48 and the M24/47. Most agree these are better built rifles then the 98Ks on the market right now, the M48s have mostly dried up but samco has a great deal on M24/47 shooters pkg. unless you wanted a 98-k more then just a good 8MM. Look at the 24/47 rifles, http://www.samcoglobal.com/m24.html

chow chow
April 29, 2008, 10:39 AM
K 98 fired by the teen girl way into 1:54 minutes of the video clip.


April 29, 2008, 10:50 AM
My Grandfather used one a few times in WWII and they worked well on nazis :D

chow chow
April 29, 2008, 10:53 AM
Ballistic Tables comparing 3006 150 gr and 8 mm Mauser 170 gr.


Ballistics > Comparative Ballistics Results

Ballistics Results

Cartridge Information
Index Number Cartridge Type Weight (grs.) Bullet Style Primer No. Ballistic Coefficient
R30062 Remington® Express® 150 Pointed Soft Point Core-Lokt® 9 1/2 0.314
R8MSR Remington® Express® 170 Soft Point Core-Lokt® 9 1/2 0.205

Velocity (ft/sec)
Cartridge Type Bullet Muzzle 100 200 300 400 500
Remington® Express® 150 PSP CL 2910 2617 2342 2083 1843 1622
Remington® Express® 170 SP CL 2360 1969 1622 1333 1123 997

Energy (ft-lbs)
Cartridge Type Bullet Muzzle 100 200 300 400 500
Remington® Express® 150 PSP CL 2820 2281 1827 1445 1131 876
Remington® Express® 170 SP CL 2102 1463 993 671 476 375

Short-Range Trajectory
Cartridge Type Bullet 50 100 150 200 250 300
Remington® Express® 150 PSP CL 0.2 0.7 zero -2.2 -5.9 -11.4
Remington® Express® 170 SP CL 0.2 zero -2.4 -7.6 -16.1 -28.6

Long-Range Trajectory
Cartridge Type Bullet 100 150 200 250 300 400 500
Remington® Express® 150 PSP CL 1.8 1.6 zero -3.2 -8.2 -24.4 -50.9
Remington® Express® 170 SP CL 1.6 zero -4.4 -12.0 -23.7 -62.8 -128.9

Note: These ballistics reflected a test barrel length of 24" except those for 30 Carbine and 44 Remington Magnum which are 20" barrels.
Specifications are nominal. Ballistics figures established in test barrels. Individual rifles may vary from test barrel results.
“zero” indicates yardage at which rifle was sighted in.
* Inches above or below line of sight. Hold low for positive numbers, high for negative numbers.
1 Bullet does not rise more than 1" above line of sight from muzzle to sighting-in range.
2 Bullet does not rise more than 3" above line of sight from muzzle to sighting-in range.

April 29, 2008, 01:39 PM
I was all set to buy a 98K when further research brought me to the yugo seris of rifles both the M-48 and the M24/47. Most agree these are better built rifles then the 98Ks

WOW!!! I don't know who you talked to or where you got your information, but I would ignore them or it on any further discussion of Mausers.

Hmmmm...A walnut stocked K98K made at the Mauser factory in Germany? or a beechwood stocked M-48 made in Yugoslavia?? Boy...thats a tough decision!!!:rolleyes::rolleyes:

Oh I should mention I've taken my K98 Elk hunting numerous times in its original miltary configuration with iron sights. Worked just fine everytime. The longest shot I have ever taken at Elk with an iron sighted K98 was around 150 yards. The 8mm cartridge drops them like a rock.

Ballistic Tables comparing 3006 150 gr and 8 mm Mauser 170 gr.

ChowChow...it should also be pointed out that American Factory ammo for 8mm Mauser is loaded very weakly and is complete crap. Unfortunatley you need to handload to get the true and intended performance out of the 8mm Mauser. Or find some European Factory Ammo.

44 AMP
April 29, 2008, 02:00 PM
So I will just add that while rugged and dependable, military configuration 98K Mausers are not the best hunting rifles. Sights, trigger pull, and accuracy that may only be mediocre handicap the Mauser in full military trim. However,rifles made from Mauser 98 actions can be among the very best there are. As for a rifle to take into the arctic to stop a hungry polar bear, you could do worse than a military configuration 8mm Mauser. For hunting, you can do better. The Mauser certainly will do the job for hunting, but just as you can drive nails with a hatchet, a hammer a better tool for the job.

US made 8mm (along with virtually all other European calibers) have been/are loaded well below the power levels commonly used in European made ammo. The best thing you can do with US made 8mm hunting ammo is shoot it up for the cases and reload it to it's potential.

The 8x57 is the European .30-06, and capable of doing anything the .30-06 can do, with the right ammo, in a good rifle.

Te Anau
April 29, 2008, 02:57 PM
Who has ballistic's on the surplus 8MM ammo that's been available the last few years? I believe most of it was Romanian.

April 29, 2008, 06:07 PM
I bought my K98 from Aim Surplus. Heres the link http://www.aimsurplus.com/acatalog/WWII_German_K98_8mm_Mauser_Rifle.html. Only $239. They ask you to add $20 so they can pick the best one out of the lot, which I did do, but I don't think that necessary. The rifle shoots great and with it being an older heavier rifle made out of real wood and metal the recoil is very soft in my opinion. The ammo can also be had for cheap I got 100 rounds of surplus all on stripper clips for $40 from the Sportsmanguide.com. Hope this helps.

April 29, 2008, 07:53 PM
I've got a sporterized version my dad brought back from the war and was luck enough to have an uncle who was a gun smith. Its not pretty but it morethan gets the job done. only reason I retired it was price of ammo $30, per box few years back, now my son is big enough to use my 30-06 so its back to my 8mm. I have never had a deer get away or go more than a few yards was using 220 grain bullets we had had in the gun cabinet forever, can't find them now 180 about the largest I have been able to find. Still hate to pay 30-35 bucks box, only good thing I only shoot it about 2 times to sight in, one shot for deer, a box should last 5-6 years. One other thing I don't notice but the guys I hunt with can allways tell when I shoot the rifle makes a distinct sound unlike any 30-06,30-30 or other rifle.

April 29, 2008, 08:27 PM

You can get new hunting for around 20 dollars a box if you don't mind Prvi Partizan ammunition. 196 grain soft points loaded to full power. Cabella's had them in stock last time I was at the store, an you can order them over the internet from midwayusa.com .

I reload, so a 185 grain Rem Corelokt over IMR 4064 for a velocity around 2,500 fps is plenty good for deer. I do keep some Remington 170 grain commercial bullets on hand because they are a great low recoil load for new shooters who aren't used to recoil.


April 29, 2008, 08:28 PM
The US ammo is loaded in case some idiot puts it in an old commission 1888 rifle so it won't blow that up.
The original 8MM was a .318 bore but that was changed in 1905 to a .323 high velocity spitzer bullet.
When the Germans adopted the Karibiner 98 Kurtz they standardized the ammo to the MG34 machine gun 198gr 2550FPS thumper.
With a ballistic coefficient of .575 and extra powder from Luftwaffe machine gun rounds at 2700FPS snipers made 1,000 meter kills with 4 and 6 power scopes.

A fully charged up 8MM has more knock down for a big bear than any 3006 but I would prefer a 338 Lapua if I had to face one today or a 338 win mag.

32 caliber, heavier bullet, please don't get all were Merkun and we be better cause this is simple math like those arguing a 9MM has any advantage over a 45ACP.

If you want factory ammo you need European ammo or load a 200gr at the top end as a Mauser is strong.

Now lets get something straight people. The Yugo is not better nor is the Czech or German or FN or whatever your national price dictates it goes purely by each gun and its condition.

I have 25 98 action Mausers ( German, Czech, Argentine, Yugo and I have had most others) and the worst for accuracy is about 3 inches at 100 yards with the best about 3 inches at 200 yards with iron sites. The sniper (repro) will shoot 3/4MOA with match ammo and 1-1.25 MOA with German pulled bullets.

Matter of opinion but the K98k when you have a good one is still the best but opinions vary on personal choice.

Matching K98ks can be very expensive because of their collector value and with matching bolts the early guns are wonderful.
A K98k Mauser with a full charged 198 gr makes a great through the steel door home defense weapon.

The best deal money wise, IMO, is the Yugo 24/47. These were refurbished model 1924s that had the barrel replaced and gone through, not used, then stored before being sold as surplus.
The M48 is also good but these were well used by the Yugo military so buying in person to check the bore is preferable as many have been shot out.
The Czechs and Argentines are generally the smoothest actions along with matched early German K98ks but the Czechs are cheaper by a long shot.

Cole distributing sells the Norwegian K98k 308 replacement barrels.
Norway inherited what was left there by the Germans and rebarreled some in 3006 then when they entered NATO the arsenal made exact K98k barrels.
They surplussed the unissued ones and for $100.00 you can get a brand new never mounted K98k barrel that is for the German stock and sites.
I have 2 mounted and the are sweet and am buying 2 more.

One more thing, 8MM Mauser milsurp ammo has dried up because the Chinese have bought most brass cased to melt down for the metal. The Yugo ammo had a hard MG primer and the Yugo 98s have a stronger spring.
If you use Yugo ammo (exact copy of German but no iron, lead core) in an old Czech or German 98 you may want to get a Wolff Blitzschnell 22 or 24 pound spring to set off that primer.

Once you know how to take down a 98 action you can change the firing pin or spring standing up in a fire fight. Short of changing the barrel you can fix anything on this gun easily and if I had to trust my life to any rifle it would be a 98 action Mauser. I love my Remi snipers but if they broke I would be lost.


April 29, 2008, 08:42 PM
For a hunting rifle, call Ben at Classic Arms. (Google is your friend.) Rifles (Mausers 24/47) with basically new bores for $129, nicer than the k98's at 300 plus. If you're not happy he'll exchange, but you'll be happy.

These rifles shoot tight groups. My 24/47 shoots like a Rem 700.

You should probably handload your 8MM or use foreign loads. US SAMMI ammo is loaded light, because of problems with 1890's guns.

With full power the Mauser is equal or better than 30.06. Buy a Classic rifle, shoot it and you'll order a 2nd one. Best deal going.

April 29, 2008, 08:57 PM
Chow chow posted an interesting link:


Oddly enough, before they showed the girl shooting a k98 they showed a brief clip of two penguins. Penguins live in the southern hemisphere, and travel as far north as Argentina. I guess it was a case of journalistic creativity....by the same people that bring us so much true information about gun control.

April 30, 2008, 06:22 AM
I have one, and have fired it a fair bit, but never hunted with one. That said, like the 30-06, I cant imagine it not being capable of taking anything in North America, if you use hunting ammo, and dont hit the critter in the rump or something. :p
Being a surplus, military gun, vs a new made commercial gun, obvious accuracy will vary a bit, but mine seems like it is capable of great accuray if I were a better shooter, and found the right commercial or hand load that it likes best."Good enough for hunting" accuracy seems to be pretty standrad from what I hear though.Plus, being something a little different, it would be a fun gun to hunt with. I dream of someday using my Prussian Mauser 71/84 in 11.15x60mm on an elk or bear, because I really think it can handle the job with no problem, and being an unusual gun and caliber, especially since I load the cartridges with blackpowder like was originally designed, it would just be really neat. I think hunting with milsurps is just a neat way to add a little something extra/special to the hunting experiance.

chow chow
April 30, 2008, 09:52 AM
I have a K 98 myself and a box of Sellier and Bellot SP ($ 10 in 2003) . I havent used it yet.

April 30, 2008, 10:12 AM
This is my first post and hello to everyone. I collect and shoot Mausers and deer hunt with them every year. If you do not reload then Prvi Partizan or Sellier & Belloit has pretty decent newly manufactured ammo that has good ballistics. The Prvi is however dirtier than the S&B. U.S made ammo is pretty much too tame for anything but plinking. The German made Mauses are of much higher quaility than the Yugos. I personally believe the German, Swede and Czech to have a higher quaility of steel than other Mausers. If you're thinking of making a sporterized Mauser then the German K98k or Czech VZ24 are excellent choices. If you are a reloader then a 8mm-06 might be a good choice as it uses the original military barrel that is reamed out. This is a .30-06 round necked up to .323. An impressive round. There are many scount mounts available now for use with long eye relief scopes that make using one of these rifles a little easier.


April 30, 2008, 10:16 AM
My grandpa had an old Czech 8mm that my great uncle brought back from Europe after WWII. We used it for years and it took its share of deer. I hunted with it a few years, but never really shot it. So, I took it to the range and noticed that in shooting it, the shoulder of the cartridge casing was being pierced. We don't know if there is a headspacing problem with it, or what. I shot it a few more times and the piercing happened again, so we retired it. Not sure if this condition was common for the Mausers.

With all the 8mm ammo we had, I decided to have have a Ruger No.1 made up in 8mm. It has a Hart barrel and shoots pretty well. I have it sighted in with Norma loads at the moment, but am looking into handloads for it.

April 30, 2008, 11:04 AM
Allright, enough of this talk about your 8mm's without pictures! Lets see em!:)

April 30, 2008, 11:34 AM
I sold this one to build a Short Side rail repro.
This is a Code 42 Oberndorf 1940. This was a repro but all original WWII parts. The sniper scope is a claw mount Zeiss Zielvier (4X). I could see the bullet holes at 100 yards the clearest glass I ever saw.
Germans used commercial scopes for snipers even after they adapted them with range markers they were the same three post hunting scopes.
Best groups with light loads using Sierra 200gr match bullets and Milsurp 4895 where under 5/8 inch at 100 yards. German bullets could go slightly under 1 inch and 185 Remingtons bullets about 1.5-1.8 inches. Yugo 198s about 2 inches average


April 30, 2008, 11:44 AM
As Richard said call Ben, he is a good guy.
I bought 10 24/47s and all but one had a new barrel and the one did not need it. Everyone shot milsurp at 2-2.5 inches.
Best 8MM buy for the money right now.

The Yugos are good tools and if you want a shooter that is the way to go.

K98ks, however, are the Darth Vader, dark side, bad boys in black, historic rifles that will always have a mystic.
And, an early matching smooth as silk one with a good bore that shoots is both beautiful and deadly accurate about hunting quality not target.


April 30, 2008, 04:44 PM
I was on the market for a nice K98, and about two weeks ago I found one at a local gunshow. It is Nazi marked, DOT code, made in Brno, Czec., with the front sight hood, cleaning rod, and trigger housing lock screw still there, for $240. It was in excellent shape. It was too good of a deal to pass up.
I have seen Russian captures, missing the front sight hood, cleaning rod, and trigger housing lock screw missing for $250, so I had to pick it up. It is a good shooter. I have put about 100 rounds through it so far.

April 30, 2008, 07:43 PM
The 98 mauser is a great hunting rifle. It is on par with the 30-06 when you use the European loadings that are offered by Privi Partizan, S+B, wolf gold and a number of others. The American loadings are in the 30-30 range. I have used a few different 8mm mausers for quite a few deer and it works just fine. I do handload my hunting rounds so that its potential can be used. With a 150 gr bullet at 2800 fps with a 200 yard zero, the difference in drop between a 30 cal and the 323 is less than a half of inch. If you reload, there are all kinds of good 323 bullets to fill any hunting need.

July 7, 2012, 05:01 AM
+1 on the yugo mauser 24/47

1.5 at 100 yds

Puts the Texas Boar down quick

July 7, 2012, 08:35 AM
For hunting, the 8x57 is and excellent cartridge. It compares favorably with the 06 and 7.62x54R. The 06 does have a slight advantage, but not a lot.

July 7, 2012, 10:18 AM
I found this K98 sporterized in a pawn shop.
I shoot a couple deer every year.
I might shoot one with this rifle.

July 7, 2012, 09:43 PM
+1 on the yugo mauser 24/47

You bumped a 4 year old thread for that? :rolleyes:

Jack O'Conner
July 8, 2012, 05:12 PM
When I was a kid in Park County Wyoming, my Grandad would often take supplies to a shepard way up in the Bighorn Mts. This shepard was named Pedro and he lived out of a covered wagon. His only rifle was a German Mauser but didn't seem to be handicap. Pedro shot elk and mule deer whenever he wanted to with that older rifle.

American ammo is somewhat similar to 32 Special levergun cartridge.


July 8, 2012, 05:37 PM
Holy thread resurrection Batman!!!!
maybe it would have been politically correct to do so 4 years ago, I would never do it with a nazi stamped mauser(too valuable) if it was a cheap yugo mauser from big 5 or one that bubba got his hands on that's beyond restoring then yeah I wouldn't hesitate.

July 10, 2012, 02:34 PM
196gr 8x57JS has a .592 ballistic coefficient. It should do 1000m with ease, and is probably very accurate if you had a modern rifle to fire it in.

The 6.5x55 swede is another old timer with a fantastic BC of .630 (!).

A 190gr .300 win mag is .530, a 220gr is around .625 in the 220gr 300 win mag military round.

January 12, 2014, 05:48 PM
I've been hunting with k98s for nearly fifty years. They are accurate and reliable. I used one with 123 gr. bullets -- around 2900 ft/sec -- on groundhogs, 170 gr. handloads -- 2,600 ft/sec. -- on deer, and Sellier and Bellot 196 gr -- 2,600 ft./sec.-- on deer. All rounds are good for 1" at 100 yds. The Sellier & Bellot are fantastic rounds. Loaded to full military specs. I pay around $25 a box. I've been hoarding them in case we get some import restrictions on ammo. You won't do any better than a Mauser. They are relatively cheap, and as good or better than some guns of modern manufacture. Good hunting, guys.

January 12, 2014, 06:20 PM
oh god it's been brought back again... it's a super zombie!

January 12, 2014, 11:18 PM
the 8x57 is a great killer, no matter how it's wrapped :D

January 13, 2014, 12:37 PM
Used one now and then with 220gr Sierras. It is silly to compare a modern hunting rifle to a stock or sporterized military weapon for hunting purposes. There is no doubt the military rifle is better. We REALLY hunt hard. I don't need some prissy new factory rifle riddled with plastic. A normal day of hunting for us usually involves somebody rolling or sliding down a slope covered with rocks, logs, and brush. I am partial to Arisakas because they weigh less, but have clocked quite a few hours with Mausers and other military rifles.

January 13, 2014, 01:09 PM
When the 8mm Mauser was introduced, the largest military vehicle at the time was the horse.
If you took that cartrdge hunting, you should be fine.
For a couple of years, I took a stock K98 or a stock Spanish M43 elk hunting as my back up. I did actually take each out into the woods for a couple days each.

Although I didn't see an elk, each was very easy to carry. They balance well and tote pretty well, once you get past the initial 8 lbs or whatever.

I had no doubts that the 8mm was fully capable of dropping an elk. I would expect for deer they'd be more effective.