What Ammo Do I Need, And Where Do I Get It?

woodsrunnerwoodsrunner Senior MemberPosts: 2,725 Senior Member
I've inherited a beautiful little Oberndorf full stocked Mannlicher style Mauser, and I need to know what it shoots and maybe where to get the ammo. Please help me out with this since this little rifle doesn't have a flintlock on it and I'm not sure about what ammo to get :confused:

Directly behind the serial number which is stamped on the chamber portion of the barrel, just foward of the receiver, is 8, 0 N. Common sence tells me that this is 8mm, right? But common sence also tells me not to make a mistake about this, too!

So, one or some of you knowledgable fellows please tell me what ammo to get :usa:
«1

Replies

  • gunrunner428gunrunner428 Senior Member Posts: 1,018 Senior Member
    First thing I'd do is get a gunsmith to do a chamber cast. This will give you the chambering specifics - especially if it's an oddball European caliber or a custom round. It's worth the investment to take out the guesswork.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,429 Senior Member
    Ditto on the chamber cast, although you can make an educated guess about the bore size by trying to insert a bullet into the muzzle. There are two different "8MM" bore sizes. One is .318" (J bore) and the other is .323" (JS bore). The very early 8's were the smaller diameter, bt those were discontinued about the turn of the century. If the gun was originally a commercial action, rather than a military-issue item, it could be any of a number of chamberings and/or bore sizes. I've got some CerroSafe casting material, so just pack it up and head north!
    Jerry
    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
  • rberglofrberglof Senior Member Posts: 2,409 Senior Member
    Is this an 95 or 98 Mauser could be 7mm or 8mm not counting the possible sporting rifle also saw mention of 6.5 swede
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,429 Senior Member
    The usual european marking for 8MM is "7.92" which is the actual diameter. "8MM" is an American designation.
    Jerry
    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 21,930 Senior Member
    Since the smaller .318 was discontinued around the turn of the 19th-20th Century, I figure most all the Yugos 24-47S and the 48s were .323 barrels unless one might have been rebarreled with an older barrel. Is that possible? Otherwise I'm not too worried about Post War Mausers. If I'm wrong here slap me across the mouth please!
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,429 Senior Member
    Even most of the WW I Mausers were the .323 bore size, and all the WW II and later ones had the big bore. The most common small-bore 8's were the 1888 Commission rifles which had the same 7.92X57 cartridge dimensions as the later 98 Mausers. Some of the very early-production 98's had the small bore, but they are pretty rare examples.
    Jerry
    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    PICS please!

    BTW the way, it's about time you stepped into the ...........well lets see...................................20th Century anyhow........................:jester::guns:
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 19,009 Senior Member
    Big Chief wrote: »
    PICS please!

    BTW the way, it's about time you stepped into the ...........well lets see...................................20th Century anyhow........................:jester::guns:
    Since the 98 mauser came out towards the very end of the 19th century, are you SURE he's made it to the 20th???:tooth:
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    knitepoet wrote: »
    Since the 98 mauser came out towards the very end of the 19th century, are you SURE he's made it to the 20th???:tooth:

    I'm betting his 98 model Mauser was made after 1900.

    Aw heck, I reckon he could send it off to Teach and have him convert it to an In-Line Smoke Pole :jester:
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,429 Senior Member
    It's a little hard to make an inline work with flint- - - - the flash hole has a tendency to singe eyebrows!
    Jerry
    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    Teach wrote: »
    It's a little hard to make an inline work with flint- - - - the flash hole has a tendency to singe eyebrows!
    Jerry

    I was thinking he could step up to percussion caps and go Cap n Ball...................
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • woodsrunnerwoodsrunner Senior Member Posts: 2,725 Senior Member
    Alright, now, you guys! I AM in the 21st century....I also own a new modern SigSauer P232 in .380ca.:roll2:

    Wish I could post photos because this is as beautiful a little rifle that you can imigine! It's a full stocked Mannlicher style Mauser made in Oberndorf sometimes-I think- between the Wars. Serial # is 79XXX, and if anyone can determine year of manufacture from that I would appreciate knowing. I find it interesting that the bolt will perfectly fit the 98k that Teach traded to me and viceversa. I took an 8mm round for my 98k's and slipped it into the muzzle to see if there was any difference. On the little Mauser there was about 3/16ths of an inch between the brass and the muzzle. On both of the 98k's the projectile went down a little further into the muzzle-down to about 1/8th inch or close to that to the brass casing. There was a full 1/16th difference. Is that significant? I would think so.

    The piece is a GI Bringback, and I have the history on that. The GI who "liberated" it was from Boston, Mass., and it came down through his son. I'm cooking up this big lie to go along with it.....you know....like "it was taken from Hermann Goering's personal collection and it really belonged to Hermann's wife etc etc" All high-end pieces that didn't come from Hitler's personal collection came from Goering's collection you know, and I figure that adding that it was his wife's kinda makes it a little more "original", don't you think :spittingcoffee:

    I'm gonna get my Daughter to help me make some photos and learn how to post them. You fellas who think I live in the past would be really surprised to see some of the "modern" pieces I have like this little double swabble stocked Mauser, my beautiful sexy little JP Sauer doublehammer 16ga SXS, my little Winchester '06 .22 pump, etc!
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,429 Senior Member
    OK, we're making a little progress. The fact that the bolts swap indicates you've got a 98 action. Another thing you need to look for is the size of the receiver ring where barrel screws into it. If there's a step there, instead of the receiver being smooth along the shooter's left side, it's definitely a large-ring 98 action. I assume the firing pin also cocks on opening of the bolt? That's another indication it's a 98 action instead of the earlier design 94/95/96 action which had a smaller receiver ring and cocked on closing- - - -the last 1/2" or so of the bolt travel had to be pushed against spring pressure.

    Try to chamber the 8MM cartridge, but don't force it if it doesn't want to go. The fact that the bullet doesn't want to enter the muzzle as far as it does on the other rifles tells me you might have a 7MM bore, or possibly the rifle is chambered for one of the sporting cartridges instead a military round. Have you taken the action out of the stock yet? It's possible the chambering is stamped on the barrel below the wood line, along with more proof marks. I think we definitely need to do a chamber casting on this one!
    Jerry
    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
  • woodsrunnerwoodsrunner Senior Member Posts: 2,725 Senior Member
    It's got to be a 98 action.There is a step just like a 98k, the size-profile is identical. The bolt housing, release lever on the left side, cocks on opening like the 98k, everything in appearance is identical. On the top of the receiver ring on the 98k it's stamped 7,9 (comma and not period), and on the little Mauser it's stamped 8,0. Other than that, no difference. An 8mm round drops perfectly into the chamber and is easily extracted by the bolt lugs. But yet, I checked again with several 8mm rounds, and the projectiles go down the muzzles on the 98k's a full 1/16th inch more than on the little Mauser. I don't need to shoot it. Heck, I've got 2 98k's that I've never yet shot, so I'll go that way first 'till I can get you to cast the chamber and give your "blessing" on the whole thing.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,429 Senior Member
    The comma is also characteristic of European decimal markings. It's used instead of a period, dot, or whatever you call it. It's pretty certain you've got a virtually unfired 8MM with little or no rifling wear at the muzzle. I've got a nearly-new condition 8MM military rifle, and a 7MM I built for my nephew, so I'll try the "bullet in the muzzle" check and post some pics for comparison.
    Jerry
    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
  • Big Al1Big Al1 Senior Member Posts: 7,084 Senior Member
    After reading up on the Mauser sporters, I learned this. Many Oberndorf sporters were chambered in what was called the 8x57N or normal. This had the .318 bullet diameter. It was more popular in Germany as a sporting round than the .323. There were also restiction put on the manufacture of arms with military chamberings imposed by the Versailles Treaty.
    There was also an 8x51 Short but that was chambered in the short K model action, but since you swapped bolts with a 98K it's not a short action. To bad, those are like hens teeth.
    I'm thinkin' it's a type M or type S sporting carbine.
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,321 Senior Member
    I can't find any data on the 8 x 57N. Can you reference this, Al?

    I think it's a regular 8mm (7.92) Mauser, "Anglacized" for some G.I. after WW II.

    Between the wars (I and II) civiians couldn't own a military-caliber rifle and it was common to lengthen the chamber. I have a 1928 Mauser in 8 x 60 to get around that. I also have a 30-06 that was made on a military action but probably more recent, as in the 1950s or 60s.

    Generally these were well-made rifles with bells and whistles, like ribs and/or full length stocks. Woodsrunner, you might also check to see if it's in 8mm-06, which was another cheap way of converting 8mm Mausers.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,429 Senior Member
    Rich, take a slightly flattened .32 caliber round ball or a soft lead split shot fishing sinker about 5/16" in diameter, insert it into the chamber end of the barrel, and drive it through the bore with a wooden dowel rod and your ball-starter mallet. Measure the diameter of the slug that comes out the other end with a micrometer or a dial caliper, and it should tell you whether you've got a .318 or a .323 bore. If it's a .318, I can handload some ammo for you. I've got a set of 8X57 loading dies and it's easy to switch to a .318 expander ball.

    Edit: Here's a Czech 24/47 rifle that's in very good shape, bore-wise with a milsurp 8MM FMJ bullet in the muzzle:

    100_3696.JPG

    Here's a 7MM barrel with the same round in it:

    100_3698.JPG

    If you've got a .318 barrel, the bullet fit would be somewhere between these two. Unfortunately, I don't have a .318 bore barrel for comparison.
    Jerry
    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
  • Big Al1Big Al1 Senior Member Posts: 7,084 Senior Member
    Gene L wrote: »
    I can't find any data on the 8 x 57N. Can you reference this, Al?

    I think it's a regular 8mm (7.92) Mauser, "Anglacized" for some G.I. after WW II.

    Between the wars (I and II) civiians couldn't own a military-caliber rifle and it was common to lengthen the chamber. I have a 1928 Mauser in 8 x 60 to get around that. I also have a 30-06 that was made on a military action but probably more recent, as in the 1950s or 60s.

    Generally these were well-made rifles with bells and whistles, like ribs and/or full length stocks. Woodsrunner, you might also check to see if it's in 8mm-06, which was another cheap way of converting 8mm Mausers.

    I was reading Ludwig Olson's book on Mausers. There's a whole section devoted to Oberndorf sporters starting about page 218.
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 21,930 Senior Member
    Teach wrote: »
    It's a little hard to make an inline work with flint- - - - the flash hole has a tendency to singe eyebrows!
    Jerry

    Ahh, great case for asbestos eyebrows.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • woodsrunnerwoodsrunner Senior Member Posts: 2,725 Senior Member
    I carefully followed your instructions and:

    I had available .310 cast pure lead balls, so I carefully flattened two slightly and tapped each through the barrel from the chamber to the muzzle. A total of 10 measurements with my Starrett micrometer on each ball shows an average mic measurement of .319 with no measurement being smaller than .316 or greater than .321. The rifling was very crisp and well defined, just perfect on the soft lead balls and deep but I have no ability to mike the depth. It's just well defined. I think we can safely say that it's a .318, but that still doesn't tell us anything about the chamber size, does it?

    This is the little Mauser that Dave Dodds gave me when he was dying. He had no ammo for it, and told me that he had never fired it. It was a "Safe Queen" that he picked up in trade shortly after he came home from 'Nam in 1970. He traded it off the son of the WWII Vet who brought it home from Germany.

    Edit: Big Al1, would any of your pubs date this Oberndorf Mauser by serial number? It has to have been made between WWI and WWII I would think. Serial # is 79XXX.
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 21,930 Senior Member
    Anyway woodsrunner, that said, There's a couple of brands I know of with decent 8mm Mauser ammo. One is Privi Partison and the other is Wolf. I bought 120 rounds of Wolf Gold 196 grain Spitzer lead point ammo. It shoots good for factory stuff and it is Boxer primed and brass cased. So it is very reloadable. However, according to Teach and the other Mauser gurus here it's the same stuff as the Privi Partison and the Privi may be cheaper, not sure so check it out. I got mine from Midway I think for around $18 a box of 20. It's quality stuff. There's other places around that may have it cheaper. It's a damn good round and I wouldn't be afraid to go after about anything with those rounds.

    Now, again, having said THAT, When I went to pick up my last Yugo Mauser build, a .257 Roberts AI, I took him another Yugo barreled action I had and told him to bend the bolt, drill and tap the receiver for scope mounts, and put on a Beuler safety and also remove the rear sight assembly. Then I called him back and told him to go ahead and install a Timney Sporter Trigger. Then it will be suitable to hunt with as an 8x57 until my gun fund recovers enough to rebarrel it to 6mm Remington. So I have plenty of ammo for it to hunt with for a couple years if need be. I can also shoot the two I still have in Mil Surp condition with that ammo.

    I have plans to sporter one more of my 4 Yugos which I really want to do in the classic 6.5x55. Then my short and medium collection will be complete, and I'll still have one Mil Surp in 8x57.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,321 Senior Member
    Unless it's got a Mauser banner the serial number would be just made up by the gunsmith. Either that, or it's the military #. That's if it was made out of a surplus military action, and to check to see if it is, the military actions will have the clip loading cut-out on the left side. My unsigned Mauser is 20xx. My signed Mauser, made by Willi Karl, is 13xx. It was the one made in 1928, and since it was made for the Geman market, is proofmarked which gives the date. Yours may or may not be proofmarked. That's the only way I know of determining the year of manufacture.

    The .318 bores are the J bores, and should be designated as such. The .323 ones are JS.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • Big Al1Big Al1 Senior Member Posts: 7,084 Senior Member
    Could not find any reference as far as serial number and date of manufacture.
    1939 standard bore diameters are .3106 bore and .3228 groove, for the JS bullet. The 1910 standard was .309 and .321.
    The Type M sporter had a butter knife bolt handle and stell fore end cap, the Type S had the standard tear drop bolt handle and wooden schnabble fore end.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,429 Senior Member
    OK, Rich- - - -here's a procedure you can try with what you've got available at home, and it will be just about as accurate as a chamber casting. Carefully work a bullet out of one of those 8MM cases with a pair of pliers- - - -wiggle, twist, and pull until it loosens, then keep working carefully until you can remove the bullet without distorting the case neck badly. Dump the powder, and refill the case FULL with 3-F BP. Seal the neck with a wad of toilet tissue, chamber it, and fire. The bang will be sufficient to fireform the case to exact chamber dimensions, and there's no danger of overpressure, as there's no projectile. Give the barrel a good hot water flush, coat with Ballistol, and you're good to go again.

    Compare the fireformed case to an unfired 8X57 round, and if it's a standard chamber, there will be little, if any noticeable difference in dimensions except for the diameter of the neck where the bullet seats. It should be 3 to 5 thousandths larger on the fired case.
    Jerry
    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,429 Senior Member
    Snake, it really helps to read before you type. It's almost certain that he's got a small-bore barrel, and cramming .323 bullets down a .318 bore is living dangerously. The best approach to this situation is handloading with .318 bullets, not taking chances with over-the-counter ammo with the wrong size bullets.
    Jerry
    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,321 Senior Member
    I think it's a .323 barrel, myself. If it was a J barrel, it almost certainly would be marked with a J. The JS barrels as someone said, were pretty well standard by the late 19th Century. Also, as someone said, the J barrels were on 88 Mausers and a few, very rare, 98 barrels.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,429 Senior Member
    On an obvious custom rig, acquired in Germany during WW II, all bets are off. I'd rather believe measurements of a bore slug, which have been made, over unsubstantiated speculation, right?
    Jerry
    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,321 Senior Member
    Well, you can push a .318 slug thru the barrel. It should slide through without much resistance. Also, it was probably acquired AFTER WW II. Woodsrunner thought it was a bringback.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,429 Senior Member
    It helps to communicate with people who can read all the posts in a thread, I guess.
    Jerry
    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
Sign In or Register to comment.
Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Guns & Ammo stories delivered right to your inbox every week.