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JP Sauer 1916 Mauser... sportster

Discussion in 'Firearms Research' started by BigBlue 94, Dec 5, 2018.

  1. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    So this is a gun I inherited from my gramps. As the title states, it's a J.P. Sauer and Sohn 1916 Gewher 98. It has a beautiful, unique walnut stock, with a Fajen buttplate. Entire stock could be Fajen. Caliber is unknown: 8mm doesn't quite fit due to the bullet being too big, 30-06 is too long, and 308 projectile is too big around. A 7mm mauser case fits snug, but obviously I can't be 100% sure. I don't recall my bore measurements from years ago. I have pics of every marking I could find, but no caliber. The bore has a pretty significant twist rate, just visually. I'm also unsure about the turned down bolt handle. It doesn't appear to have been modified.

    Has a Pecar-Berlin 3x7 scope (clear as the dickens!) and what appears to be an EAW side scope mount. All I can find on that is the digit 5 in a couple places.












    I have plans and the alloy for casting the chamber. When do y'all think the conversion was done, and where? Approximate value? I don't intend to sell, just curious. All thoughts welcome.
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2018
  2. boom boom
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    boom boom Contributing Member

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    Okay, I'll take a stab--first--crown markings show original military issue. I do not see Weimar republic stampings. Your receiver was a WWI era GEW98 military issue that left German service after WWI. The three crowns with initials on the right front receiver ring are inspector proofs--the eagle on the left of the front receiver ring is the Prussian eagle. You have the original sear as WWI mauser parts were stamped with the last two digits of the serial number. It was reblued as the Germans left their receivers in the white and has an aftermarket barrel installed. (The original barrels were much longer @29 inches plus. ) The bottom markings are foundry markings of some sort as the Germans were mad for marking up their rifles.

    Given that the scope is obviously not of WWI vintage,

    You might find this website interesting on background regarding production etc. and a bit more on proofs.
    https://gewehr98.wordpress.com/blog/

    Found this information on the scope:
    "Pecar scopes were imported to the U.S. between 1954-1961. Made by Koehler of Germany, these high quality scopes featured an interchangeable reticle which was praised by none other than Jack O'Connor. The scopes you mentioned are 26mm steel tubes & have the following dimensions; Pecar V-IS 3x7(1959-1961)" https://www.24hourcampfire.com/ubbthreads/ubbthreads.php/ubb/showflat/Number/2320194/page/15

    Thus, I am guessing that the sporterizing work was done in the U.S. as German sporterizing would have additional proof markings as firearm proofing upon new ownership is pretty much required. Could have been a WWI era bringback sporterized directly or a rifle sold via importers prior to 1968 to the U.S. from the WWI stocks scattered around European countries as compensation for WWI damages.

    That would set your sporter date roughly during the late 1950's or early 60's as far as the scope can tell you. Mounts might also lend a clue if they have markings or someone recognizes them.
     
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  3. boom boom
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    boom boom Contributing Member

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    BTW, I assume that you are talking about the bolt sleeve and safety. Those appear to be original as most people either put a Buehler safety or Wisner which modifies the bolt sleeve. I don't see either of those in your picture. Looks like a military type safety and bolt sleeve-cocking piece. These are not hammer fired btw--that is a firing pin cocking piece at the rear which interacts with the sear to fire the rifle. Caliber and cartridge, do a chamber casting. Gunsmiths normally marked caliber changes on the barrel so this could have been done by a shade tree gunsmith.
     
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  4. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    Thanks! About all I'd gathered was the small info about the scope you posted, and that JP Sauer was the 6th out of 9 manufacturers in terms of production. There's a possibility that I have papers on this gun, but my stack is about 5" thick.

    I should add I also have an M48 from Mitchell's Mausers to compare, though I realize there are differences in the 30 some years between manufacture.

    The little peep sight is a redfield, but as vintage looking as the scope. The scope has all sorts of scars on the bottom side of the eye piece. Not sure why, because I can't get the bolt to touch it, though it is close.

    Lockup is good and tight, and the bolt cycles well.

    I was talking about the actual bolt handle. (My phone typed hammer...)I thought they were strait, and this one is so bent, that there's a tiny recess in the wood.

    The safety looks like it was just cut down to me, and not really up to my standards, but that's the only complaint I have about it
     
  5. LRDGCO

    LRDGCO Member

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    Boom Boom should drop the mic after his first post! BAM!

    I have several sporterized Mausers from the same era. I love the looks of these well done mid-century sporters. You can imagine the pride and joy they were to their owners.

    As to your caliber dilemma, I am surprised that there is no marking on the barrel. 7x57 seems likely, but you will have to slug the barrel to be sure. Once you determine the chambering, I suggest a headspace gauge just to be sure all is well.
     
  6. boom boom
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    boom boom Contributing Member

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    The original gew 98 bolt was straight. It has been altered or changed and the scarring on the bottom of the scope likely came from using a military safety which was probably altered later to make it fit. If the bolt is original then it will have digits from the rifle serial stamped on it. Might want to get a wisner safety and bolt sleeve or a replica German sniper safety. Not crazy about buehlers.
     
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  7. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

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    That high foldover comb cheek rest is indicative of US custom rifles from the late 50's - early 70's. You really should have the chamber cast to get the right ammo and have it engraved on the barrel for the next generation.
     
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  8. amd6547

    amd6547 Member

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    Looks like a rifle I’d like to shoot...
     
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  9. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    Once deer season is over and I get these Ford trucks put back together (AT to MT transmission swap and seperate engine swap), I'll have time to pull the action apart and cast the chamber. I've got small character stamps I could mark it with (on the underside)

    I forgot to mention, on the barrel top is a very faded stamping that looks like it says C-7. It's not real straight either.

    As for shooting it, I don't have any safe queens. I've put at least a few rounds through everything I have. Even the ones that are 100+ years old. I plan on shooting this rifle. I've had it for 15 years, since my grandpa started unloading his collection on me.
     
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  10. boom boom
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    boom boom Contributing Member

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    Sauer made good receivers and firearms at the time and still do. If it was rechambered for 7x57 Mauser, that is a fine cartridge that should feed correctly and not overstress the action. However, those old GEW 98 receivers are plain carbon steel and have case hardened lug recesses with a soft interior for toughness.

    The most common problem with them as a sporter is someone loading them hot or rebarreling/rechambering into a higher pressure round. One with proper heat treatment won't fail immediately but will gradually increase headspace due to lug setback (the softer center gives way and is swaged out of place. A small angled mirror and a good light can indicate such an issue or if you have a good sense of touch and a clean receiver, you can feel it if you can get a finger into the area. Ridges, bumps, etc. are all bad in the lug recess area. You can also mark a bolt with marking fluid to measure how much bolt lug to receiver lug recess contact exists.

    On these rifles, one common problem is that people lapped the bolt and bolt recesses to get good contact--but they wore through the case hardening to later ill results.

    Once that happens, the receiver is toast--it is not appropriate to set back the barrel nor put a new bolt in to try to save it as the rifle's recesses will continue to deform until bad things start happening.
     
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