Book Review: Mauser Bolt Rifles by Olsen

Ludwig Olsen’s Mauser Bolt Rifles is one of the foundational reference books on the Mauser rifle, and deserves a place in the library of any bolt action rifle enthusiast. Olsen studies the rifle from its early single-shot, black powder beginnings through its ultimate expression as the Model 98, and the various offshoot models adopted by so many military forces worldwide.

The copyright to the book is owned by Brownells (and has been since the 1970s). They have made more than a dozen incremental improvements, and the most recent printing is definitely a better book than the earlier versions. The best bet is definitely to purchase directly from Brownells (they have it for $40), but I am including a link to it on Amazon as well, since other purchases you make after going through the link will help support Forgotten Weapons! 🙂


  1. Its a great book! Way more Mausers then I ever knew about. I wish they had some info on the Post WW1, Geha, Remo, and Hard Hit Heart Gewehr 98’s that were converted to shotguns.

  2. I have one of the earlier versions of this book, as well as “Mauser Military Rifles of the World”, both of were great. I should probably try to look up what new additions and subjects were added between my version and the latest, as i am a huge Mauser fan, both of the firearms and the 7.92x57mm Mauser, so this is an area i am most interested in.

    I also intend to start collecting Mausers one day, i wonder if i can import rifles from the US where the biggest auctions are, do they sell overseas? I will look into that again later.

    • I’m afraid I have no idea what the laws are with regard to exporting rifles from the US. Or about what import laws your country has. The info can be found somewhere, I’m sure.

  3. Looks like a lot of interesting wonky detail… was the “interesting” odd variant that you mentioned and passed over a large-caliber anti-tank Mauser? Love those large-caliber Mausers…. one of the many regrets of my life is that I didn’t grab and store an 11mm 71-84 Mauser when Century Arms was selling them for wall-hanger prices back in the 70s. Looking at all the black-stock high-tech stuff that is out there… it is hard to find anything better than a bolt-action Mauser with a 6-shot tube magazine in almost-but-not-quite .45-70. (In this case I would call the 11 x 60R “close enough” if I had six of them in the magazine!)

  4. Nice book, but mutch more book on mauser are made I have more than a meter of Mauser booksThr one Mauser 181 to 19118 covers thdevelopment better

  5. An absolutely fabulous book. My favorite is the [Paraguayan?) .303. I had NO idea that a “real” military Mauser was ever made in .303, just the Pattern 14.

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