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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
The Austro-Hungarian 8x50R m/m Model 1893 was delivered on Friday at noon. (See this earlier thread: http://forums.gunboards.com/showthread.php?354051-Last-week-s-auction-sweeps )

Since then, I have been working on its disassembly and clean up. All in all, I am very happy with the purchase. As Bulleye reported a few weeks ago, the rifles in this Arizona auction were filthy, rusty, and groady....in what some antique dealers call "antic fresh" condition. (Translation: wear gloves and handle with tongs) I bought six rifles from the auction. Most were so thickly encrusted that I first inclination was to rent a Bobcat for the clean-up.

The good news about this rifle is that everything was there. Although the parts were mismatched (no surprise), nothing was missing (big surprise!). Further, the stock and even the handguard with its two clamp springs were without any splits, cracks, breaks or big missing chunks. On the downside, the handguard was glued to the barrel by mixture of old oil and field grit. A little extra gentle pressure and a lot of oil and vasoline under the clamp springs eventually freed them up without breakage.

As you can see in these first few close-up pictures, the reciever markings are strong, but its suffers from a blotchy surface left by what had been strong surface rust. I'm still massaging it with oil and 4X fine steel wool and brass brushes. When I removed the handguard I was pleased to find that the barrel swell was marked in the Austro-Hungaran fashion with the Vienna acceptance mark: Wn-eagle-14. The reciver ring lacks the Romanian crown but retains the "Md 1893" designation. Although this "Steyr 1914" was made on the production line used for the Romanian contract Model 1893's, it is a totally purpose-built Austro-Hungarian weapon. There are no Romanian marks of any kind on this rifle..only Steyr-Austro-Hungarian. Even the rear sight leaf has been changed so that the the elevation progressions are in "shrit" instread of meters. The Romanian sights go from 400 to 2100 meters, while these A/H sights go from 300 to 2600 shrit, just like the A/H M.95 long rifle.

Regarding the bore, er, well: yes, there is rifling visable,

Although this rifle was built to accomodate a long cleaning rod, the A/H manual on captured weapons does not show a cleaning rod on the 8X50R version of the Md 1893.

I'll most more pictures later today or tomorrow. We're hosting my youngest grandson's birthday party here, so it may not be politic for me to be running around with camera and Mannlicher!
Best Regards,
John

PS. The auction also yeilded two Chinese Mausers with outstanding stock brands. One of the Mausers is a 1933 banner rifle with the Standardmodell 1924 siderail.)
 

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Your description sounded much worse than what was presented in your dialogue! That's a good thing!
 

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The Austro-Hungarian 8x50R m/m Model 1893... the barrel swell was marked in the Austro-Hungaran fashion with the Vienna acceptance mark: Wn-eagle-14.
Congratulations, John! Now you need another Austro-Romanian to keep it company!
 

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Field Editor ~ GUNS Magazine, Co-Author ~ Serbian Army Weapons of Victory &PH - Kudu Safaris
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Still waiting for those promised photos so that we can hate you over on the WWI Forum John!

I'm GREEN with envy!

John
 

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Austro-Hungarian and Bavarian Contract
I will see your A-H & Bavarian and raise you: Austro-Hungarian, Romanian, Bavarian, Chilean, Czech, etc.: :laugh:



 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Congrats John, nice 8mm M.93 Adaptiertes Rumanisches Repetier Gewehr.
What is your serial number? Mine is 8838D. How many of these were made? How many are known in existence currently?
Hi Manowar,
Thanks. My serial number is 8788C. There are two others at the Springfield Armory Museum but I do not know what there numbers are. It will take awhile, but I'll try and find out.

I'm sorry to report that I do not have any Steyr data on the production numbers for this rifle. I do know that that this rifle was in service, or at least in storage, in Yugoslavia in 1941 because it is in the Kennblatter. However, that could mean that only a handfull were on hand....and 400 could be defined as a "handfull".

I know of only 4 existing, yours, mine and the two examples in Springfield. However, this could be way, way off.
Regards,
John
 

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I know of only 4 existing, yours, mine and the two examples in Springfield. However, this could be way, way off.
John, I am aware of 5 more of these in the Legermuseum in Delft. I will try to get the serials. Maybe there is a pattern (or not). Interestingly the Vienna and Budapest museums do not have any examples.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
John, I am aware of 5 more of these in the Legermuseum in Delft. I will try to get the serials. Maybe there is a pattern (or not). Interestingly the Vienna and Budapest museums do not have any examples.
Five? Wow, that's a huge number to find collected in one country that was neutral during WW I. I'll bet there's a very interesting story behind those acquisitions. Even more curious is what happened to these rifles afer the war. If your D-block rifle conforms to usual production practice, Steyr may have made over 30,000 rifles...maybe 40,000. The two at Springfield were swept up in a small arms technology quest at the immdiate end of the war directed by the War Department's Ordnance chief. Do you have any ideas on this?
Best Regards,
John
 

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Hello Gents,

There are five more in the basement collection of the Military Museum in Prague. I examined all of them hands-on. There are two more in private collections that I know of in Austria that I have also examined. Kris Gasior had one for sale five or six years ago as well.

I'll check Heino's manuscript for numbers of the 8x50mmR conversions of the Romanian M93.

RRRRRRRRRGGGGGGHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!

JPS
 

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From Heino Hintermeier's

„In der Not der Stunde“

- die fremdländischen Gewehrmodelle in Österreich-Ungarn 1914 - 1918

A.
„8 mm M.93 (adaptiertes rumänisches) Repetiergewehr“

Mit dem Königreich Rumänien bestanden seitens der Waffenfabrik in Steyr schon langjährige Geschäftsverbindungen. Bereits 1879 hatte Josef Werndl in Bukarest Verhandlungen geführt und es war im gelungen, seinen schärfsten Konkurrenten, den Gewehrfabrikanten Paul Mauser auszubooten. König Carol I. von Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen genehmigte damals die Beschaffung eines einschüssigen Martini-Systems der „OEWG“ und entschied damit gegen das Mauser Modell 71 seines württembergischen Landsmannes. Bis zum 5. Dezember 1885 (letzter Vertragsabschluß) fertigte die Waffenschmiede in Steyr insgesamt 97.106 Gewehre und 3000 Karabiner M.1879 Syst. Martini („Vertragsbuch“ Seite 66/ 1-10).

Rumänien war auch das erste Land, das sich im Zuge der Modernisierung seines Waffenbestandes zur Einführung eines neuen 6.5 mm Mannlicher-Repetiergewehres entschloß. Mit Vertrag vom 27. Jänner 1892 wurden vorerst 5.000 „Vorserienmodelle M.92“ bestellt. In weiterer Folge lieferte die Waffenschmiede in Steyr bis 1912 insgesamt 352.154 6.5 mm Repetiergewehre und 60.937 6.5 mm Repetierkarabiner Mod. 1893 an Rumänien („Vertragsbuch“ Seite 66-69). Nach den Balkankriegen 1912/13 sah sich aber das Königreich Rumänien veranlaßt, seinen Waffenbestand zu ergänzen und zu modernisieren. Mit Vertragsabschluß vom 11. Jänner 1913 bestellte Rumänien weitere 100.000 Stk. 6.5 mm Repetiergewehre Mod.1893, Syst. Mannlicher („Vertragsbuch“ Seite 69, Einlagezahl 38). Die Auslieferung dieser Bestellung war für den Zeitraum Juni - November 1914 geplant.

Dann fielen die Schüsse in Sarajewo! Lediglich 2000 Gewehre durften im November 1914 an das damals noch neutrale rumänische Königreich überstellt werden. Weitere 6.500 fertige Waffen wurden zurückbehalten[1]. Doch der weitaus größte Teil der Gewehre des „Rumänienkontraktes“, etwa 74.000 Fertig- und Halbfertigprodukte, wurde vom k.u.k. Kriegsministerium aufgekauft, auf die österr. „8 mm schf. Patrone M.93“ adaptiert und der Armee zugeteilt[2]. Eine andere Quelle spricht von 74.600 rumänischen Gewehren, die durch diese Adaptierung im Jahr 1914 der k.u.k. Armee zugeführt wurden[3].

Durch seine gediegene Verarbeitung, seine Präzision und Zuverlässigkeit erfreute sich diese Waffe bei der Truppe großer Beliebtheit. Der Drehkolbenverschluß erlaubte auch bei heiß geschossener Waffe einen relativ leichten Repetiervorgang – dies war beim Gerade- zugverschluß des M.95 Repetiergewehres bekanntlich nicht immer der Fall!

Von der Druckerei des k.u.k. Kriegsministeriums wurde 1915 eine 26 Seiten umfassende „Provisorische Instruktion über die Einrichtung und Verwendung des 8 mm Repetiergewehres M.93“ aufgelegt. Das mit 3 Falttafeln versehene Heftchen gibt neben der allgemeinen Waffenbeschreibung und Handhabung auch Hinweise zur Waffenkonservierung und dem Schießen mit „gepflanztem Bajonett“.


Abb. 15 „8 mm M.93 (adaptiertes rumänisches) Repetiergewehr (Abb. aus „Merkblätter“) Waffenbeschreibung & Angaben zur Munition


Das „8mm M.93 (adaptiertes rumänisches) Repetiergewehr“ ist ein fünfschüssiger Mehrlader mit Drehkolbenverschluß (von Paul Mauser[4] & Lois Schleglmilch[5], mit Verbesserungen von Ferdinand Mannlicher[6]) und festem Mittelschaftmagazin[7] zur Aufnahme einer Mannlicher-Paketladung[8], eingerichtet für die Patrone 8x50R. Diesen Waffen wurden nur die originalen rumänischen Messerbajonette beigegeben.


Die Gewehre sind auf dem Hülsenkopf lediglich mit „Md.1893“ gestempelt, tragen auf der linken Hülsenseite die Aufschrift „STEYR 1914“ und verfügen über den vorgeschriebenen Prüf- und Abnahmestempel „Wn-14“ am Laufansatz Die Verpackung der Patronen ist wie folgt gelöst:
(analog M.95 Repetiergewehr)[9]:

[HR][/HR]
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
John,
Many thanks for posting Mr Hintermeier's text in German. I've run it through the Goggle translator and come up with this crude body of text below, which can easily be put into better English.

Looks like total production of the purpose-built 8x50R Austro-Hungarian M.93 was around 74,000 rifles and no bayonet.
Regards,
John


Google's English translation:

With the Kingdom of Romania passed from the arms factory in Steyr already long -lasting business relationships . In 1879, Josef werndl had conducted negotiations in Bucharest and it was succeeded oust his fiercest competitors , the gun manufacturer Paul Mauser . King Carol I of Hohenzollern -Sigmaringen then approved the procurement of a einschüssigen martini system of " Ended " and thus decided against the Mauser Model 71 Württemberg his compatriot . Until December 5, 1885 (last contract ) the armourers made ​​in Steyr total of 97 106 rifles and carbines 3000 M.1879 Syst. Martini ("Agreement Guide " page 66 / 1-10) .


Romania was the first country that decided in the course of modernization of its weapons inventory for the introduction of a new 6.5 mm Mannlicher - Repetiergewehres . By agreement dated January 27, 1892 for the time being 5.000 " pre-production models M.92 " were ordered. Subsequently, the armourers supplied in Steyr until 1912 a total of 352 154 6.5 mm bolt action rifles and 60 937 6.5 mm Repetierkarabiner Mod 1893 Romania ("Agreement Guide " page 66-69 ) . After the Balkan Wars of 1912/13, but saw the Kingdom of Romania made ​​to complement its weapons inventory and modernize . With conclusion of the contract of 11 January 1913 Romania ordered another 100,000 pcs 6.5 mm bolt action rifles Mod.1893 , Syst. Mannlicher ("Agreement Guide " page 69 , entry number 38). The delivery of this order was for the period June - November 1914 planned .


Then the shots were fired in Sarajevo ! Only 2000 rifles were to be handed over to the then neutral Romanian Kingdom in November 1914. More 6500 finished weapons were retained [ 1]. But the vast majority of the guns of the "Romania contract " , about 74,000 finished and semi- finished products , was from kuk Bought War Department , SCHF on the Austrian " 8 mm. M.93 cartridge " adapted and assigned to the Army [ 2]. Another source speaks of 74,600 Romanian rifles that through this adaptation in 1914 of kuk Were fed army [3].


Due to its elegance was , its precision and reliability, the weapon with the troops enjoyed great popularity. The rotary shutter allowed even in hot geschossener weapon a relatively easy bolt action - this was during straight - pulling closure of M.95 Repetiergewehres known, not always the case !


From the printing of k.u.k. Ministry of War in 1915 was a 26 -page " Provisional Instruction on setting up and using the 8 mm Repetiergewehres M.93 " hung up. The booklet provided with 3 folding plates are in addition to the general description and weapons handling also includes information on weapons conservation and the shooting with " planted bayonet " .

And the additional text:

Figure 15 "8 mm M.93 (adapted Romanian) repeater (Fig. out" leaflets ") Weapon Description & information for ammunition

The "8mm M.93 (adapted Romanian) repeating rifle" is a five shot rifle with a turn bolt (by Paul Mauser [4] & Lois Schleglmilk [5], with improvements by Ferdinand Mannlicher [6]) and a fixed center single stack Magazine [7] designed to receive the Mannlicher packet charger [8] for the 8x50R cartridge. This rifle continues to use the original Romanian knife bayonets. The rifles are stamped on the receiver ring with "Md.1893" and "STEYR 1914" on the side rail. Markings also include the prescribed A/H army inspection stamps and the acceptance stamp "Wn-14" on the barrel boss in from of the ring. Cartridge loading is the same as the M.95 infantry rifle. [9]:
 
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