German Mauser Oberndorf Rifle
rookhawk

German Mauser Oberndorf Rifle

My son wanted a larger caliber rifle for Christmas and I found this gem for the right price. I saw that it was a quality "lifetime" gun and figured I'd start my son out with a gun he won't outgrow since he was bragging that the recoil on the family .243 is no big thing and he was ready for more punch.

The question remains, what the heck is it?

It's a German Mauser. It is modern. (made post-1968) It doesn't look like a large ring as best as I can measure, and it doesn't look like a "traditional" single or double square bridge action either. I've found no other example to compare it to online in the modern era Mauser department.

Some sort of one-off run of square bridge non-magnum actions? There is more material present on the receiver than would be possible if you just milled down a large ring it seems, and the bridges don't look welded up to me.

It takes a side pivot mount from the front saddle, and then locks to the rear bridge dovetail.

Thanks for giving your opinions on this strange made-for-European-Market oddity.
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I could well be wrong because I am just speculating, but my guess would be that this is a standard K98 military action extensively reworked with welded square tops on front and rear bridges, etc.

The fact that you cannot discern welding marks is not conclusive as by definition welding will meld the material of the flat tops to that of the action and polishing then bluing will make the weld invisible.

What substantiates my thinking is:
1) The action has the military thumb cut for reloading with a 5 round clip. To the best of my knowledge, none of the Mauser square actions (i.e. "commercial" actions, as opposed to military actions) have the thumb cut.
2) The front square top is way too narrow to be a Mauser factory bridge. Again to the best of my knowledge, Mauser double square bridges actions have front and rear bridges of identical width.

The thing to verify on such reworks is the hardness of the front bridge, i.e. the hardness of the internal tenons that retain the bolt when closed. Quite often the welding (not soldering) of the square top on the front bridge is too hot and alters the heat treatment. The better gunsmiths re heat treat the action after welding with hardening paste on the tenons, but a lot of lesser smiths did/do not...

Hope this helps, and apologies if I dispel the hope of a rare original Mauser "one-off run of square bridge"... which would make one cry anyway because re-bluing it like this one etc. would destroy most of the value of the ultra-rare commercial Mauser double square bridge, be it "intermediate" or "magnum" length ...
 

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