I have a WWI, German M1898 Mauser rifle and I hope you will be able to answer a question for me. It is in very nice shape and every part matches stamped with the same number (Spandau 1916 #2851). I have been trying to identify it from Jeff Knoll’s book,”The Imperial German Regimental Marking” and the closest information I have been able to find is “SPANDAU 1916,s/n unk; Regimental: Ldst.XIX.11.3.K.96 – (Armeekorps XIX, Landstrum-Infantrie-Bataillon 11, Kompagnie 3, Waffe Nr. 96)
Is it reasonable to assume that it was originally issued to the 19 Army Battalion 11, Company? There seems to have been a number of variations produced and to me the barrel seems to be a bit shorter than some of the others I’ve seen and much like the shorter “cavalry” version but it has the straight bolt rather than the traditional curved one for that model. I’m assuming this could be because of one of two reasons. One, the gun has been shortened? If it has, it was done a very l-o-n-g time ago and it was very professional if it was converted into a “sports” gun. If so, why would they leave the bayonet mount? Or. Two, it may have been re-issued in WWII, perhaps to a home guard regiment? Any thoughts? What do you figure it is probably worth?
That is a very nice looking rifle: the tiger stripe in the stock is exceptional and even in these pictures, it appears the rifle shows well. It also does not appear to have been messed with very much, though it does look like it was cleaned a bit.
Some Gewehr 98s were converted after WWI and reissued before WWII. Some of these are referred to as Gewehr 98M rifles. Basically, they replaced the roller coaster rear sight with the K98k type rear sight. Yours appears to have this modification. However, I am not aware of versions with shortened barrels in the 98M series.
Some Gewehr 98 rifles were fully converted to Kar98k configuration. This meant receiving bent bolts, a bolt cut out in the stock and a new or shortened barrel. These also had the swing swivels replaced and filled in as the K98k has a different sling arrangement.
So... you have a rifle which is not easily categorized. It may be legitimate. I recommend you go to Gewehr98 d o t c o m. The owner of this Website is very knowledgeable. I recommend you go to his Website and ask him about your rifle. Once you find out what it is, let me know as I would like to know as well.
Thank you very much for your suggestions. Much appreciated. I certainly will let you know what I find out.