Mannlicher 1895/24 Short Rifle

     Notes: This is an 1895-pattern Mannlicher Turnbolt modified by Steyr shortly after World War 1.  The rifle was modified to fire 8mm Mauser ammunition, and the barrels were shortened to make the weapon into more handy.  The magazines were modified both to take the new cartridge and to be able to use the standard German ammunition clips.  The ejection port had a hinged cover to help keep dirt out of the mechanism; this actuated as the bolt was cycled.  This rifle can actually still be found on the civilian War Surplus market to this day.

     The M-1930 Short Rifle is a further-modified M-1895/24 Short Rifle.  They were difficult to distinguish at first glance from the earlier weapon, but has further-shortened barrels and fired a new 8mm cartridge that was developed in collaboration with Hungary.  The sights were also modified to accommodate the new barrel length and cartridge.

Weapon

Ammunition

Weight

Magazines

Price

1895/24 Short Rifle

8mm Mauser

3.49 kg

5 Clip

$1712

M-1930 Short Rifle

8mm Austrian/Hungarian Mannlicher

3.12 kg

5 Clip

$1703

 

Weapon

ROF

Damage

Pen

Bulk

SS

Burst

Range

1895/24 Short Rifle

BA

4

2-3-Nil

8

5

Nil

88

M-1930 Short Rifle

BA

4

2-3-Nil

7

5

Nil

67

 

Mannlicher-Schoenauer Greek M-1903

     Notes:  This is a combination of the Mannlicher turnbolt with a new rotary spool magazine that is still in common use in bolt-action rifles to this day.  The Greek M-1903 was the only military service rifle to use this magazine, however, until the SSG-69 sniper rifle came into service in 1969.  Another unusual feature was the Mauser cocking system; the rifle could be cocked by simply raising and lowering the bolt handle, as on the Gew 98.  Deliveries of this rifle to the Greeks stopped when Greece declared itself to be on the side of the Allies in World War 1, and did not resume until new copies could be obtained from Breda in Italy in 1927.  They were finally phased out of service in 1930.

Weapon

Ammunition

Weight

Magazines

Price

Greek M-1903

6.5mm Greek Service

3.77 kg

5 Internal

$1212

 

Weapon

ROF

Damage

Pen

Bulk

SS

Burst

Range

Greek M-1903

BA

4

2-3-Nil

8

4

Nil

97

 

Mannlicher Straight-Pull 1895 Rifle

     Notes:  This was the official Austro-Hungarian service rifle at the time.  It is a slight improvement upon the Turnbolt 1895 rifle; the bolt-action mechanism is different; the rifle can be reloaded without the clip, and there are two safety mechanisms instead of the one found on the Turnbolt.  It is also a somewhat shorter, lighter, and handier weapon.

Weapon

Ammunition

Weight

Magazines

Price

Straight-Pull 1895

8mm Austrian Service

3.78 kg

5 Clip

$1608

 

Weapon

ROF

Damage

Pen

Bulk

SS

Burst

Range

Straight-Pull 1895

BA

5

2-3-Nil

8

5

Nil

115

 

Mannlicher 1895 Rifle

     Notes:  The Model 1895 and its variants were some of the most popular infantry rifles until just after World War 1; many were even used in to equip home defense-type units and were used by partisans during World War 2.  These rifles were even equipping guerillas in Africa as late as the 1970s!

     Mannlicher 1895-pattern rifles can be put into two broad mechanism types: turnbolt and straight-pull.  Turnbolt rifles are basically the types of bolt-action rifles we are familiar with – one has to pull the bolt handle upwards, bull the bolt back to chamber a round, push the bolt forward again, then lock the mechanism again by pulling the bolt handle down.  A straight-pull design requires only a slight unlocking turn by the shooter to unlock the bolt, and either a slight movement or none at all to push the bolt forward and lock it in one action.

     Before you say, “A straight-pull system sounds much better!” – well, it is – but only for the shooter, and only in an ergonomic sense.  A straight-pull mechanism is actually more complicated than a turnbolt system.  The lack of positive locking makes the mechanism far more difficult to seal, can lead to unreliability to in firing, case ruptures, feeding, and extraction failures, and a straight-pull mechanism ends up more complicated to ensure these sorts of problems do not happen.

     This rifle was not used by Austria, but was used by the Dutch and by Romania.  The turnbolt was one of the popular bolt-action systems of the time, but Mannlicher was the first to use a clip loading system, allowing the magazine to be completely reloaded with one stroke.  The weakness in Mannlicher’s clip loading system was that the clip was an essential part of the Magazine system; without the clip, the Turnbolt 1895 is a single-shot weapon, since the magazine cannot be reloaded without the clip.  In most of these rifles, the expended clip falls out through a hole in the bottom of the magazine, but in some, the clip is ejected up and out after the last round is fired (similar to the later M-1 Garand).  The Dutch and Romanian ammunition for this weapon differs only in that Dutch ammunition is rimmed; however, they are not interchangeable. 

Weapon

Ammunition

Weight

Magazines

Price

Turnbolt 1895 (Dutch)

6.5mm Dutch Mannlicher

4.3 kg

5 Clip

$1240

Turnbolt 1895 (Romanian)

6.5mm Romanian Mannlicher

4.3 kg

5 Clip

$1240

 

Weapon

ROF

Damage

Pen

Bulk

SS

Burst

Range

Turnbolt 1895

BA

4

2-3-Nil

8

4

Nil

107