View Full Version : I have a Mauser and could use a little help

July 15, 2009, 04:02 PM

I was given a Mauser by Grandfather about 15 or so years ago, and since his passing (over Memorial Weekend) I got it out to try and have it restored (one of those things I never got to). I have posted some picks on another site to try and gather some information and the people there were helpful and I learned alot. I was able to gather where the rifle was made but would still like to know what some of the other symbols/markings mean. I don't think the rifle is rare or special but since I got it out again and have been getting into the history of some rifles, its quickly becoming a favroite hobby. My first question is should I post the pics of this rifle as they show the full serial number. I have been poking around and see that many people blur out the serial numbers or omit the full number. Should I blur these out before I post them? I appreciate any help.


July 15, 2009, 04:59 PM
I'm one of those who think it doesn't make any difference. What is any one going to do with it. The ideal of someone claiming that it is their rifle is pretty far fetched. The only reason I can really think of for not showing the full slerial number, if in fact someone thinks that perhaps at one time their firarm was stolen and that the number is buried in a police report somewhere. Ther were so many makers of Mausers there may be a dozen different rifles with the same serial number.

July 15, 2009, 07:41 PM
Posting a gun like that that is antique and has been in the family for a long time, I would not sweat the serial numbers deal but if you want you can blur them or a piece of tape over the numbers. The numbers will probably not be helpful in determining anything anyway. No usable records of old Mauser serial numbers exist that I know of. And like the man said, sometimes they just added a letter suffix and did the same run of numbers all over again. Some markings on rifles are obscure due to being something like inspection marks, etc. that are often inscrutable anyway. Makers names or codes and years are most helpful info. Without a clue from you about what sort of Mauser we are talking about, I cannot give any more advice.

James K
July 15, 2009, 10:07 PM
The X'ing out or blurring serial numbers often doesn't make much difference, but sometimes a few numbers in a serial number it can mean a legal difference or a difference in value. For example, one number can make the difference between an antique with almost no controls and a modern gun subject to all the "gun control" laws.

So I strongly recommend that anyone looking for information on a gun provide the whole serial number or at least be prepared to do so if necessary. I personally think the whole "someone will claim it is stolen" business is absurd. I have never heard of such a case and never expect to.

Another idea is that the government has people (FBI, ATF, CIA, NSA, SEC, etc.) with nothing better to do than monitor dozens of gun sites and jump with joy when they are able to learn a serial number they don't have. With aplolgy to the tinfoil hat crowd, that is even more absurd.


July 16, 2009, 09:26 AM
OK, Ill put the pics up.

July 16, 2009, 09:27 AM
Some more pics

July 16, 2009, 09:29 AM
still more pics

July 16, 2009, 09:31 AM
more pictures

July 16, 2009, 09:32 AM
3 more pictures

July 16, 2009, 09:33 AM
Heh, I know, more pics

July 16, 2009, 09:36 AM
OK, almost done with uploading pics

Jim Watson
July 16, 2009, 10:02 AM
My condolences on the passing of your Grandfather.

You have a WW II German Mauser that has been minimally sporterized by throwing away the handguard and cutting back the stock. These were done by sweatshop labor to thousands of guns in the 1950s and 1960s when a Free American could still order a cheap surplus gun by mailorder.

The receiver was made by Brno in Czechoslovakia - the "dot" code - while the trigger guard, buttplate, and whatever other part that is with similar marking were made by Mauser in Oberndorff - code "byf". Some say that Mauser provided parts to Brno but I think it more likely that this is just a mixed parts gun because no care was taken to keep matching parts together during the economy sporterizing job.

Proper restoration would require finding a correct stock AND the hardware for it, then applying the period dull blue metal finish. It would not be cheap. Consider that Grandpa probably bought it as you see it now, not as untouched WW II surplus.

Big Ugly Tall Texan
July 16, 2009, 10:19 AM
The 8282 visible in some of those photos is a parts number used during assembly. If every part of the rifle that has a number on it has that 8282, then you have a "matching parts" rifle.

Considering the sporterizing done it would be more trouble than it would be worth to try to put this thing in original condition. And, of course, it still wouldn'be be "original".

Whether or not the rifle is safe to shoot would require an examination by a competent gunsmith, preferably with a headspace guage.

If it was my rifle, I would have it altered to use a scope, refinish it with Blue Wonder and then have it rechambered to 8mm-06 - which is an outstanding wildcat round that is easy to handload.

It is a better round than either parent - the 7.92x57 (aka 8mm Mauser) and the 30-06. You just expand the neck on 30-06 to 8mm and then fireform to fit the chamber.

Another option is to rebarrel it to one of the round from the 30.06 family.

.22-250, .243 Winchester, .257 Roberts, .270 Winchester, .280 Remington, .308, 30-06, .35 Whelen, etc.

There is nothing wrong with the stock you have on it, but very nice looking aftermarket stocks in both wood and synthetic are readily available.

Of course, you can use it like it is, but with the investment of a few hundred bucks you can have a Customized 98 Mauser.

July 16, 2009, 10:39 AM
Thanks for your input! I forgot to mention something that might be helpful. The serial number that is stamped on the bolt, barrel, receiver, and safety are all matching 8282. I haven't been able to find any other parts that have a different serial number so far. Im still unsure as to the 'av' marking, I have found an explanation of an 'ar' marking on the web but Im not sure if that is the same or not. I plan on bringing it to a Gunsmith at a gander mountain around here to find out what caliber, bore condition, and see if it would be safe to fire with some work. Any thoughts on what caliber it would be or a way I could tell? Im guessing from what I have read that its really up to a Gunsmith to determine that. If any more pics would help (yeah, I have more) to determine anything else about it, let me know. Thanks to Mr. Watson (know I know what the 'dot' code means) and Mr. Texan (side question for you, are the rounds and reload equip you are talking about still readily available and not in shortage?) for your replies.

July 16, 2009, 02:15 PM
What does the H P mean, I was thinking about that as I was going over the pictures again. Jim, thanks for the condolences, Im sure Art (grandpa) appreciates them ;-)

July 16, 2009, 03:07 PM
"HP" usually refers to an ammo maker, Hirtenberger(AFAIK).

ar = Mauser-Werke AG, Werk Borsigwalde, Berlin-Borsigwalde, Eichborndamm

byf = Mauser-Werke AG, Oberndorf a./N

Different codes, from the same manufacture indicate both a different time and/or place of manufacture for the particular part - meaning that a rifle with mixed codes has original parts replaced with identical parts, made by the same manufacturer - but from a different rifle.

Quite common with milsurps & sporterized mils.


July 16, 2009, 03:23 PM
Thanks PetahW for the info. So the marking I thought was an 'av' is truely an 'ar'? It would explain why I couldn't find anything on 'av'.

James K
July 16, 2009, 08:13 PM
The rifle is a German K.98k. 8282ax* is the rifle serial number, and the number or the last two digits will be found on almost all parts if the rifle is original. The HP could mean Hirtenberger Patronenfabrik, but those letters on dot rifles normally indicate the barrel manufacturer, and I don't think Hirtenberger made barrels.

The code "dot" indicates the rifle was made at Waffenwerke Brunn (Brno rifle factory in what had been Czechoslovakia). This is borne out by the Waffenamt (WaA - Weapons Office) mark of inspector 63, known to have been assigned to Brunn.

*I am not sure of the second letter. Serial numbers started each year a 1, then went to 9999, then to 1a - 9999a and so on. When 9999z was reached, they went to 1aa-9999aa, and so on to 9999az. Brunn, the former CZ factory at Brno, made over a million K.98k rifles in a two-year period.


July 16, 2009, 08:49 PM
ax was assigned to Feinmechanische Werke GmbH, Erfurt, Altonaerstr. 25

and also assigned to Erfurter Maschinenfabrik ( ERMA ) in 1941.

For all I know, they are the same firms, with new management, after the prior management was shot for their beliefs, performance issues, whatever.

As posted above, the rifle has parts with a wide variety of codes on them.


July 17, 2009, 03:08 AM
Keep it in the condition you'r grandpa gave you. just clean it up. it'll mean more to you down the rode.

July 17, 2009, 03:31 PM
Man you guys know your stuff! Thanks for the info! So if I understand everything correctly, the majority of the rifle (which has the 8282 stamped on it) is original, but the part which has the HP and dot 13 is questionable? And the 'AV' is actually 'AV' because its a product of the serialization pattern? I have a couple of photos that show the 8282av a little more closely if that would help at all.

Thanks again!