The Looking Glass Magazine

Paul Mauser's timeless 98, the rifle that refuses to die
by Jack Corbett


 
Germany's World War II Army main battle rifle was designed to support machine gunners thus proving to be no match for the M1 Garand

 

Xtreme Weapons

 
98 Mauser rifle and U.S. SpringfieldThe hunter stood in the hot African sun 40 yards away from the Cape Buffalo bull half-hidden in the thick brush of the savannah. Tensely alone, for he had bribed the authorities into allowing him to go for his trophy without a guide, he could feel the sweat streaming down his neck. As he raised his gun he bit his lip and tasted blood. He had seen a picture of a hunter who had failed to make his shot count against a cape buf' and it wasn't pretty. Where the hunter had taken his shot there remained only a boot with a bloody stump broken off just above the ankle.

Yes, the Cape Buffalo is the most dangerous of all African big game. An enraged buffalo not only endeavors to kill his antagonist, his rage drives him to obliterating the hunter into unrecognizable road kill.

The hunter swallowed hard, taking grim satisfaction in thinking, “At least my rifle's solid... it's a Mauser." Then the Buffalo charged... huge head down dust flying from hooves. CRACK the hunter fired... the bullet deflected off the horn... splinters everywhere... he worked the silk smooth action... a second gleaming brass cartridge slid into the chamber... he lowered his aim...

Freeze frame... We have the Buffalo charging down on said hunter who's ready to take his second shot... a shot that he'd counted on and got because he'd chosen the action for his custom rifle carefully. Brave but dicey, the man certainly puts a lot of faith in his shooting ability... which may or may not be well founded. For certain faith in his rifle is solidly based for at the heart of the custom rifle was the Mauser 98 action. Arguably the best bolt action ever developed... the standard German Army infantryman's issue during both World Wars... a rifle that has become a legend... and this month's Looking Glass featured firearm of the month.

Kiara and 98 Mauser

 

A LITTLE EUROPEAN HISTORY

The genius behind the rifle’s design was Peter Paul Mauser, boPaul Mauser

Born in Oberndorff, Neckar, in 1838 son of a royal gunsmith... Working with his brother Wilhelm Mauser (1834-1882)... he developed the Prussian 11 mm. needle gun that was adopted by the German Army in 1871.

In 1897 Mauser produced his masterpiece, the Mauser Gewehr magazine-rifle. It was Germany's answer to the French Lebel M1888. Peter Paul Mauser died in 1914.

ACROSS THE ATLANTIC

During this same time period, starting with the 1860's, American arms development had reached its temporary zenith with the Winchester lever action, which had given Civil War Union riflemen unprecedented firepower. However, the rapid firing lever action was not widely used by the U.S. military which instead had adopted the much slower firing single shot Springfield 45-70 since the military minds responsible for U.S. arms procurement had decided that the lever action’s quick firing capabilities would be a waste of ammunition. Long after the death knell of the single shot rifle should have been heard, the U.S. finally adopted the 30-40 Krag bolt action rifle that had been designed by Captain Johannes Krag, director of the Norwegian Arms factory and Erik Jorgensen, another Norwegian.

During the Spanish American War of 1898, the Krag was pitted against Paul Mauser’s newest creation, the 1893 Mauser, which utilized a new system of loading employing a stripper clip which could be conveniently inserted into the rifle’s breech and five rounds wiped into the rifle’s magazine quickly. The Mauser was significantly faster loading than the Krag and its high velocity 7 mm round out ranged the Krag flat out... a wake-up call for the U.S. military who found that casualties were more expensive than bullets.

The Spanish-American War was a wake up call to the American Arms industry, which immediately started looking for a replacement to the slow loading and out ranged Krag, which would fit in well with the new American military mind-set of the precision sharp shooter ruling the battlefield with his fast-shooting long-range rifle.

The result was the 1903 Springfield, designed around the legendary .30-06 cartridge. Open the bolt of a Springfield '03 and the German 98 Mauser and guess what? Surprise! You can hardly tell the difference. The American Springfield which would soon find itself pitted against the 98 on the battlefields of France had so heavily borrowed from Peter Paul Mauser’s creation that after the war the U.S. continued paying royalties to Mauser.

 

Many thanks to Kiara and Amy of Heartthrobs Entertainment for modeling
with Smoky, our favorite white tiger courtesy of Tiger Wayne

 

We hope you enjoyed the excerpt.  To get the entire article Xtreme Guns and Babes for an Adult World is now available at Amazon in Kindle, full color and black and white print editions.  Here you will find twenty-six gun articles with  115 pictures of 26 strippers and feature entertainers.

Xtreme Guns and Babes for an Adult World

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