Mauser Kar 98 file photo

Mauser Kar98k Rifle

Country of OriginGermany
TypeRifle
Caliber7.920 mm
Capacity5 rounds
Length1,110 mm
Barrel Length600 mm
Weight3.900 kg
Range500 m
Muzzle Velocity760 m/s

Contributor: C. Peter Chen

The Karabiner 98 Kurz bolt-action rifles, also known as Kar98k or K98k, became the standard German infantry rifles in 1935. Although the name of these rifles contained the word carbine, they were in fact rifles. They were considered bulky and heavy compared to contemporary rifles, while the bolt-action might mean a slower firing rate; however, German soldiers reported that these rifles were preferred for their high accuracy. This notion changed later in the European War as they became overpowered by semi-automatic weapons wielded by Russian and American troops. Most snipers of the German Army were equipped with the sniper rifle versions of this design, which were equipped with Zeiss Zielvier 4x (ZF39), Zeiss Zielsechs 6x (ZF42), Ajack 4x, Hensoldt Dialytan 4x, or Kahles Heliavier 4x telescopic sights. In late 1944, the Kriegsmodell variant was introduced with simplified design to increase production; these rifles lacked the bayonet lug, cleaning rod, stock stick, and other features found in the prior Kar98k rifles. Between 1935 and 1945, about 14,000,000 Kar98k rifles of all variants were built; 132,000 of which were sniper rifles.

During the war, Russian and other Soviet troops captured several million Karabiner 98k Kurz rifles of all variants. They were initially stored away in warehouses and factories in preparation for the potential escalation of the Cold War, but eventually they were shipped to communist revolutionary groups around the world, such as in the case of the communist forces during the Vietnam War. Some of the formerly occupied nations such as Norway and Romania also captured large stocks of Kar98k rifles as Germany surrendered in 1945, and used them as standard rifles in their military forces. Karabiner 98k Kurz rifles continued to be built after WW2 by firms such as Fabrique Nationale of Belgium and ?eská Zbrojovk of Czechoslovakia; many of the Czech-built rifles went to Israel, which were used, alongside other models of rifles, as standard rifles until the 1970s, seeing action in the Six-Day War in 1967 and the Arab-Israeli War in 1973. During the 1990s, many Kar98k rifles were seen during the conflict in Yugoslavia. Today, the Germany Army maintains a small stock of these rifles for military parades; there were also reports of Kar98k rifles being used in action against American and British forces in Iraq.

Source: Wikipedia.

Photographs

Soldiers of German 1st SS Division Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler in full dress uniform with Kar 98b rifles, circa 1937-1938Volunteer soldiers of the German Condor Legion under training in Ávila, Spain, early 1939German troops of SS-Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler Division resting during a campaign toward Pabianice, Poland, Sep 1939Hitler Youth members in weapons training, date unknown
See all 25 photographs of Mauser Kar98k Rifle



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Visitor Submitted Comments

  1. Anonymous says:
    29 May 2009 04:40:49 AM

    in world war 1, the Germans shipped i think 10,000 Mauser karabiners (the old models) to the Irish rebels (IRA) fighting the British. however the ship was intercepted by a British naval ship in the German blockade
  2. Anonymous says:
    16 Oct 2009 06:41:53 PM

    Mauser rifles are better that Mosins.. but I fancy the Mosin more.. why is this ??
  3. Bill says:
    6 Dec 2009 06:55:28 PM

    The Karabiner 98K was based on the Mauser system. The weapon held 5 rds.of 7.92x57mm
    loaded from a stripper clip into its internal
    magazine.
    The 98K was the basic version that the German Army used in W.W.I. It was designed a little shorter, than its W.W.I model. Every German Soldier trained with it,and it was the
    basic Infantry Weapon.
    The soldier was trained on other weapons, but
    the 98K was the basic rifle. The rifle was produced until May 1945.
    Post-War:
    Millions of 98K's were captured by the Soviet
    Union, the Soviets re-furbished them in the late 1940's and early 1950's. Like all Russian Military Equipment they were kept in storgage. Soviet bloc allies were issued them, many other countries in Europe used the
    98K for years. Norway retired the last 98K's
    in the 1970's.
    Today the 98K is a collector weapon,and used by hunters and target shooters, others have been converted into fine hunting rifles.
    As of 2005 the 98K's that were captured by the Soviets and re-furbished in the late 40's
    and early 50's,have appeared on the civilian
    market. The German Bundeswehr still use the 98K rifle for Military parades.
    Since 1999 production of the Mauser M-98 has resumed in Germany by Mauser Jagdwaffen GmbH
    (Mauser Huntingweapons Ltd.)
  4. Anonymous says:
    13 May 2011 10:37:19 AM

    i received a 98k 100 year anniversary rifle.
    can you give me some details and the value
    of same?thank you
  5. Alan Chanter says:
    13 Dec 2013 12:13:21 AM


    The German Mauser bayonet Model 98/22 was based upon the design produced originally for the Model 1898 Mauser rifle, and of which bayonet pattern there were innumerable variations manufactured during World War One. A new bayonet design was introduced in c.1922 and remained in service right up until the end of World War Two. Several variations existed, some having wooden grips, others with reddish-brown coloured synthetic material (bakerlite?) grips. The blade was 26cm long and the bayonet's fittings were often of blued steel.
  6. Blake says:
    14 Jan 2014 07:59:07 PM

    I'm guessing that the German military wasn't happy when we created the 1903 Springfield

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Mauser Kar98k Rifle Photo Gallery
Soldiers of German 1st SS Division Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler in full dress uniform with Kar 98b rifles, circa 1937-1938
See all 25 photographs of Mauser Kar98k Rifle



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