View Full Version : WTB WW11 Collection

November 20, 2009, 02:23 AM
Am working on a collection of C+R's from WWII era. Here is my wish list; Mauser K-98, have a small ring "sporter" with pitted barrel, not exactly collectable but headspace good, action great, shoots fine. Swiss K-31, Arisaka, SMLE, Garand, if wallet allows.(Nice gentleman saved me a headache when unscrupulous dealer at show tried dumping a Norinco Garand on me. For $1K) Buyer beware, right? What have I missed? In process of securing C+R. If not in hand have FFL I can work with. Hoping to find all in decent to good operating condition. Any Vets or collectors to steer my in right direction?
Almost gave Mitchells Mausers an order til I got educated courtesy of the wealth of knowledge by you all. Have a Carcano to start with. Think these fine examples of history should be preserved. Thanks, CTK

November 20, 2009, 03:04 AM
A Mosin Nagant are the obvious omission.

You should get the M1 from the CMP. It will be in better condition for less money than pretty much anything else available.

If you just want a decent example of a K98, there are still a few Soviet captures available, fairly cheaply if you don't mind peened swastikas.

If you really want to get silly (and go broke), here is the shopping list:

November 20, 2009, 07:05 AM
You will have a lot of fun with a M1 Carbine. My wife loves shooting it and is better with it than I am. Also there is the 1903 & 03-A3. You should definitely get your Garand from the CMP if you can meet their eligibility requirements. If not, get with me and i'll direct you to someone that won't take advantage of you. The carbine can be an ok buy from Gunbroker or a gun show, but you should do some studying first. Oh, my personal favorite Mauser, a non-captured Czech VZ24 with the lion crest and Czech army acceptance marks. Better yet, just go off Emcon5's list!!


November 20, 2009, 09:21 AM
CMP has M1 Carbines as well as Garands.

November 20, 2009, 09:43 AM
I never heard of a chinese garand. I have a garand that was built on a Century reciever and it is a great shooter, although it isn't as collectible or a C&R. Maybe that or a Chinese M14 was what the guy was referring to.

I also never heard of a small ring K98. Small ring mausers are M93s or M95s, not M98s. I could be wrong though.

K31s are fine swiss rifles, but never fired a shot in anger during the war. I've never shot mine, but I hear that they're extremely accurate.

The 1903A3 was extensively used by US soldiers and marines in the war. there are quite a few of them for sale lately. It's the best made mauser variant ever issued bay any army.

The Steyr mannlicher M95s are nice rifles, but were only used by prison guards. Still though, they're affordable and cool. They kick like a mule though, and make the M44 seem tame in comparison.

MAS 36 rifles are a nice addition to any WWII collection. They're french so that means that they weren't shot very much and spent most of their life in warehouses after being surrendered. You usually find them in great condition. I found on in .308 that I had to do a little bit of work on the stock, but they're nice rifles. Original 7.5 french ammo is hard to find and prcey though.

November 20, 2009, 06:42 PM
Good start, thanks. Forgot, I've got a very, very nice Mosin. 5ooyds, no prob

November 20, 2009, 07:45 PM
Nothing Italian or French!

November 21, 2009, 11:01 AM
Nothing Italian or French!

And why would they be omitted?Both nations were participants in WW2 and both countries rifles are way better than most people have been lead to believe over the years.Carcanos and the various French rifles are pretty easy to find and ammo is available if you look around.Privi Partisan makes 7.5 French, 8mm Lebel, and 6.5 Carcano and its all $20.00 a box or less.

November 21, 2009, 11:23 AM
I was pointing out their omission, not advocating their elimination.
I also did not notice the MAS 36 post above mine.

November 21, 2009, 11:43 AM
He stated in the original post he already owns a Carcano.

November 23, 2009, 12:58 PM
I never heard of a chinese garandLike the OP said, Norinco made them. I saw one a few months ago: fairly nice, but they look just a bit wrong with sharp corners, clunky stocks.
I also never heard of a small ring K98.Several were made, the most common here in the USA are the Mexican Model 1917 rifles, but there were also European-made small ring M98s.
K31s are fine swiss rifles, but never fired a shot in anger during the war.Perhaps, but there was a very good reason the Germans never invaded Switzerland . . .
The 1903A3 was extensively used by US soldiers and marines in the war.Early in the war, the 1903A3 was fairly common, but later they were removed from forward units and relegated to guard duty and shipboard duty.
It's the best made mauser variant ever issued bay any army.That is an opinion.
The Steyr mannlicher M95s are nice rifles, but were only used by prison guardsThe M95 saw active combat service in both World Wars.

November 23, 2009, 04:41 PM
why do you want a mauser with a pitted barrel?

November 23, 2009, 05:01 PM
I wish you well in obtaining your collection. I am a collector of WW2 memoribilia and weapons, but good examples are getting harder and more expensive to find. I would suggest reading all you can about the weapons you intend to purchase. It is easy to get taken. As to the Garands and carbines, most have been through more than one rebuild, and finding one with all correct WW2 parts will be very pricey. I have in my collection a Garand, Carbine, O3A3, Lend Lease Colt 1911A-1, 2 T-99 Arisakas, a T-38 Arisaka, No1 Mk3 and No4 Enfields, 91/30 and M 38 Mosins, K-98 Mauser, MAS-36, and a 6.5 Carcano. I have managed to collect original bayonets and slings for these weapons as well, which is harder than finding the weapons themselves. I'd go to gun shows, pawn shops and yard sales, and ask around if anyone has any old guns they wish too sell. You might be surprised at what you find. I do regret not making a few purchases, such as the G-43 for $500, the SVT-40 for $250, and the Arisaka paratrooper for $200, but that's water over the dam a long time ago. The WW2 thing can be quite addictive, as to which I can attest. Next thing you know you end up with closets full of uniforms, crates full of field gear, 35-40 helmets, various numbers of other types of headgear, posters, and odd things you have to research to find out what they are. It is interesting to say the least. Sometimes you run across something one of a kind, and that makes the hobby very satisfying, like the cash ledger of the 106th ID, aviator's kit bag that belonged to the man who rescued JFK, or the mussette bag of a navigator on a B-17 who was KIA. Once again, wish you well on your collection, but don't be surprised if it doesn't grow to other things as well, as mine started with the gun collectiion.

November 23, 2009, 06:08 PM
"K31s are fine Swiss rifles, but never fired a shot in anger during the war."
I don't have a citation and I don't intend to look it up, but I think both the Germans and the Russians tried to send significant number of troops through a Swiss pass to sort of cut the corner and flank(same pass at different times). Both attempts were utter failures due to an overwhelming Swiss rifleman response and neither thought about trying it again.

November 23, 2009, 07:51 PM
I don't want a pitted mauser. One small pit in bore. Previous owner was gonna saw it in half and dump it, got it for free. Would love to find a nice barrel for it, though still shoots well enough for back up deer rifle. Thanks for continued advice.

Swiss Sargeant to Kaiser Wilhelm after Wilhelm inquired what the Swiss would do if invaded by a force twice the number of the Swiss Army. "Your excellancy
we would all have to fire our rifles twice" Paul Scarlata SGN 2000

November 23, 2009, 08:04 PM
Although you got the gist of it, you missed some of the meat. Although not an exact quote i will do my best to fill in. Not sure who the people were but it was a high ranking German(you may be right on who) and a contingent of Swiss including high ranking officers although it may have been a sergeant who responded. I don't know if it is true or not. For all I know it started as a joke told around cook fires.

Roughly how I heard/read it:
German: What would you do if we invaded tomorrow?
Swiss:We could mobilize one million men within 24 hours.
German: We could mobilize 4 million for an attack.
Swiss[dead serious]: We would each have to fire 4 times.

If you don't like Swiss rifles I have to guess you have never fired one.

November 23, 2009, 09:49 PM
The availability of some WWII surplus is rapidly declining. The golden days are gone. I'd start out with a C&R license and immediately get the following at the current prices:

Russia (Important Belligerent)
1.) Russian Nagant revolver
2.) Mosin-Nagant M91/30
3.) Mosin-Nagant M38
4.) Mosin-Nagant M44

Later on, you can add a SVT40 if you can fine one.

For the remaining Belligerents, a lot of good surplus is gone or soon to be.

UK (Important Belligerent)
1.) SMLE Mk. 4 (You want a British, Long Branch (Canada), and Savage makes)
2.) SMLE Mk. 3 (You want a British and an Australian arsenal, one of each)
3.) SMLE Mk. 5
4.) Enfield revolver .38/200 (without the later added safety.

USA (Important Belligerent)
1.) 1911A1 .45
2.) M1 Carbine (wait for a good one)
3.) M1 Garand (CMP is best)
4.) 1903 Springfield (we started the war with 'em)
5.) 1903A3

Japan (Important Belligerent)
1.) Type 38 Arisaka
2.) Type 99 Arisaka

Germany Russia (Important Belligerent)
1.) Kar98, German made, the Russian Capture rifles are not 'pure', but the history is there and they are good weapons. I have a 1940 in great shape, I wonder if it got from France to the Eastern Front, and where it was captured: early at Stalingrad? later in Pomerania?
2.) P08 Luger, spend the bucks on a nice one, and on another one to shoot.
3.) P38 Walther, the Russian Captures are the best price, these aren't worth shelling out for a matching original finish Western Front piece.

Italy (Important Belligerent)
1.) Carcano

France (Important Belligerant)
1.) MAS 1936

India (Important Belligerent)
1.) SMLE Mk. III (Ishapore arsenal)

Finland (Important Belligerent)
1.) M1939
2.) Any Russian Mosin-Nagant with SA markings.

You should pick up bayonets, slings, pouches, etc., for any WWII rifle as they come available. Get as good of condition as you can afford at the time, and the best one you can get. When you know the calibers you are going to be getting, start buying ammunition whenever you see it, all you can.

You can get one nice example of everything above for about $7,500, or somewhat less or somewhat more.

The lesser Belligerants, like Yugoslavia, Poland, Dutch, etc., you can pick up if you want to expand your collection, and also add handguns as well.
Sweden was such an important Neutral, I'd add a Swedish Mauser while you can still find them. The Swiss K31 is another Neutral if you want one, but I see them being available forever at the shows due to ammunition availability. A Turkish Mauser with wartime date would be a good Neutral to get. Also, there are a lot of Mausers for the smaller Allied and Axis powers, they had troops in the fray, so there's Siam, Romania, Czech, Hungary, Belgium, etc., etc. Finland used a lot of stuff, it's marked SA, generally Russian, but some German goods, too.

November 24, 2009, 12:17 AM
Great suggestions. Lot's to learn. Swiss K-31 has moved to top of list. Budget will limit me to long guns, but if something catches mt eye at a show I'll sure be tempted. Don't know what the heck my Mauser is. Just know it works, gunsmith headspaced, cleaned it up for me. Nifty little thing. Thanks.

November 24, 2009, 10:16 AM
Nothing Italian or French!

They are pretty damaged from being dropped so often.

November 24, 2009, 04:23 PM
I agree with kilimanjaro's list he posted but for a representative French rifle Id suggest getting a Berthier variant if possible since there were alot of them in use at the start of WW2.You really cant go wrong with a Mas36 though.Just avoid the ones converted to .308 by the importers.

November 27, 2009, 01:16 AM
Timepieces, rifles, chocolate, 6' blondes...... What luxury things do they not do well?

Maybe Cars? I don't know of any famous Swiss car companies.

44 AMP
November 27, 2009, 09:31 PM
And resposes have covered the rest pretty well. WWII era rifles are a fascinating subject, with many variations, mostly still available, but like many things, the cost is rising, and won't ever go down, and the supply is dwindling.

Early in the war, the 1903A3 was fairly common, but later they were removed from forward units and relegated to guard duty and shipboard duty.

This is basically true, however, there were some Army units that fought the entire war with the 1903 as their standard rifle. Most units were more than happy to trade their Springfields for Garands,when they could, but not all did.

Not (much) mentioned are the lesser known (and more expensive) rifles used in limited numbers like the Soviet SVT 40, the US Johnson, and the German G41s and G 43s.

As a basic start, you should get one rifles (at least) from the major powers, and then go from there. A Springfield or Garand, a Mauser Kar98k, an Arisaka, a Moisin Nagant, and an SMLE. IF you can get rifles from the lesser powers along the way, great. Once you have that, you can start looking for the more rare guns.

I also suggest you seriously look into handloading. Not only is it a cool hobby, but when done correctly, it can make even poor shooting milsurps perform acceptably.

A lot of the WWII milsurps were shot with corrosive ammo, and care and cleaning during the war and in the 60 plus years since varies hugely. Some of the guns (especially the foreign ones) can show a large variation in groove diameter from what is "standard" for their caliber. Careful handloading (and cast bullets, sized for the bore) can allow these guns to still turn in respectable groups.

November 28, 2009, 09:51 AM
I also never heard of a small ring K98. Small ring mausers are M93s or M95s, not M98s. I could be wrong though

K98s were, in fact, small ring Mausers. The term "K98" is often confused with "98K" which were the famous large ring Mauser rifles of WWII fame.

November 28, 2009, 09:57 AM
Maybe Cars? I don't know of any famous Swiss car companies.

A number of years ago I met a guy who worked for an international collector car dealer.

He told me that one vehicle he delivered to a purchaser in Chicago was a German WWII open four seat staff vehicle which had a lovely brass ID/data plate on the dash which proudly proclaimed (in German) that the vehicle had been made by Dodge of Switzerland.

Of course, Ford was also making deals with Hitler in 1943 to make sure that their truck plant in Denmark didn't get bombed, and General Motors maintained de facto ownership of Adam Opel A.G. throughout the war.

December 3, 2009, 10:05 PM
Thanks again for input. Found my K-31. Condition finest I've come across.
Had another, should have snapped it up. Also an equally nice Enfield, 1942 manufacture. My supplier made an interesting comment, heard rumors of Southy Korea possibly releasing a goodly supply of Garands and M-1's to one of the major importers. Rumored to be sold for $150. If true he felt that this may result in a price drop on these pieces. Anyone hear of this thru the grapevine? Sounded to good to be true but this is a reputable dealer who only carries ultra fine goods and has never let me down. I'll keep my fingers crossed as current prices seem a bit inflated to me. At least in these parts.
Wisconsin deer kill down nearly 30%. State had overestimated heard again.
Wolves and bear abound. Insurance companies are happy and State sold nearly 700,000 licenses. OK, Mauser? Says ERFURT1918 on reciever.Also has"98" stamped on it. A crown above Erfurt. Anyone identify?

December 3, 2009, 11:28 PM
Sounds like you have a WWI GeW 98, if so, they've become scarce. Straight bolt, long barrel, humped sight.

It'd be nice to see MI rifles and carbines drop in price, they made millions of them and they don't sporterize like the K98, so there should still be lots of them out there.