The G40k: A German Experimental Mauser Carbine

This is lot #1635 in the upcoming RIA Premier Auction. It was scheduled for April, but has been postponed – check their web site for upcoming Online Only auctions every month, though!

In April 1940, WaPrüf 2 directed Mauser to begin development of a shortened Master carbine with a 490mm (19.3”) barrel, presumably for specialty troops. Development meandered on until July 1942, by which time just 28 rifles had been made, in two series. The first batch were numbered 3-15 and the second batch in the 70s and 80s with a V (“Versucht”, experimental) prefix. Only one other example is known in the US, number V81 in the Aberdeen Proving Ground collection. The development program was dropped in 1942, probably because the need for the rifles had been adequately filled by Brno-production G33/40 carbines instead.


    • Count on it! A light-profile 19-in. barrel in 7.92x57mm? BOOM. The Gebirgsjäger G33/40 was notorious for harsh recoil too. Some of the FN carbines? No thanks!

      • Perhaps some form of muzzle-brake or recoil buffer is needed! But wait, that would make the weapon heavier!

    • Assuming that it is more or less the same as a G33/40, the recoil is actually about the same as a standard K98k. On the other hand the muzzle blast and muzzle flash are truly memorable.

  1. “(…)development program was dropped in 1942, probably because the need for the rifles had been adequately filled by Brno-production G33/40 carbines instead.(…)”
    This sound as III Reich’s bureaucracy at its finest – one manufacturer already provided solution, another continued looking for solution of same problem for more than year.
    And why Mauser Werke (with tens of years of experience) was not able to cope with task basically being “make rifle but shorter” for over 2 years? Were WaPrüf 2 requirement incredible high?

    • Apparently the Germans were the first to use laminated stocks
      in their rifles during the war. So I would say it was common enough. Unless I am corrected.

      • I had a Brno-made 1944 Kar98k with a laminated birch stock. It was pretty much standard from mid-1943 on to make best use of materials.

        Note that it had the stamped buttplate of the Kriegsmodell but the machined nosepiece of the standard Kar98.



  2. IMO small ring Mausers are the way to go if you want or need a shorter version. Swedish m.96/38 or m.38s are a real pleasure to shoot.

  3. I do not know the German aircraft terminology, but the laminated rifle stocks were made of “Schichtholz”, which is laminated wood where the layers have the same orientation of grain.
    This differentiates it from “Sperrholz” where each layer’s grain is at a 90 degree angle from the previous layer.

  4. The supply of suitable walnut blanks for stocks started to run out in the late 30’s. K98’s from 1939 onwards typically have laminated stocks.

  5. Ian, this rifle originally was sold by Hermann-Historica Auctions of Munich/Germany on 20th May 2019. See:
    The rifle was back then already discussed in great detail on various forums. It has significant differences from the few originals known, as well as that it has a serial number that was not documented to exist (whereas others are listed). You can find a detailed discussion on it here:

    This rifle must had been purchased either by Rock Island Auction themselves, or by someone who then submitted the rifle for resale with them. As a result to this, this rifle needs to be import marked somewhere. If the import mark was removed, this needs to be mentioned in the description. I cannot find anything like this.

    As a result to your video another forum discussion was opened here:

    You are more than just someone looking at a rifle. With your platform you have great influence on potential buyers. With this influence you also have responsibility. As a result to this you should look at all information on this particular rifle available and not blindfolded make ads for Rock Island Auction on a particular rifle that is claimed by others in public to have issues. You could damage your own reputation by accepting something the way it is offered and shown to you.

  6. I find it odd that the Kar98, which was a short rifle, was described as a carbine, but this carbine is described as a rifle. There must be some Germanic logic behind it, if only I could see it.

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