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Can someone enlighten me of what to look for to distinguish an authentic Red 9 from a put together. Thanks.
Serial number 1-135000, rear sight 100-500, NS intertwined marking on back of hammer, Imperial acceptance mark on right side of chamber.

Aftermarket grips with a red are available for both large and small, early and late grip frames. They are often the first thing that fools.

Regards,
 

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Combination of what 1914mauser describes. The serail number range should be joined by the up to 500 rear sight blade markings and the NS (New Safety) stamp in the hammer.
Not all the imperial acceptance stamp (Rampant eagle) in the side as long as I recall, but might have it in front of the magazine. Some might even not have them at all.

Red Nines also have faint circular milling marks all over the sides and a less protruding "humps" where the rear sight slide runs. Some didn't have the "9" carved in the grips, or might have them replaced and/or roughly "in the field" carvings; if original to the pistol they should show the gun's S/N in the inner face.

Edited to add one of my worn & mismatched but still very enjoyable shooters; although a Red 9 (High 100,000s S/N), rear sight leaf is graduated up to 1000 meters....and 4-digit matching to the rest of the pistol!....go figure....
Group was shot offhand 20 yards with local production 115gr. FMJ ammo BTW (can do better ;) ) :

3812510


Best you can do is check:

 

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Maybe someone would be kind enough to post a pic of something with milled panels and long extractor? The real C96 I mean, not a reproduction.... Sorry, guys, I can't help myself.
Red-9s have milled panels. The long extractor is only found on Conehammers and early Large Ring Hammers. (There is an active auction on GunBroker that shows a LRH with the long extractor. Forum rules do not allow posting of link to active auction so perhaps you could search for it?)

After reading some of the other post I understand why there is so much confusion concerning the Red-9 and being a collector and researcher of Mauser pistols, I know why the available information is somewhat lacking and /or filled with conjecture. The book pictured in the back ground of Ian's video on Paul Mauser that was authored by Mauro Baudino and Gerben van Vlimmeren. I contributed my research on the pocket model Mausers that constitutes the last 80 pages. Speed's book is also an excellent reference. Though my primary focus has been the pocket and vest pocket model Mausers. I do collect the C-96 model and feel I have a good knowledge base of the variations that where produced. I hope that what I provided will be helpful to determine what to look for.

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What kind of confusion are you taking about? Everything is pretty clear regarding the Red-9. It never really worked as well as the original ones chambered in 7.63. I've had and shot plenty of them. Used to collect and shoot Brooms for 25 years or so.
 

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Maybe someone would be kind enough to post a pic of something with milled panels and long extractor? The real C96 I mean, not a reproduction.... Sorry, guys, I can't help myself.
Now I am confused. If you collected C96s why would you ask for someone to post these pictures?
Here is a link that might help: Mauser C-96 (askmisterscience.com)
 

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Used to is a key word here. To me the "real" C96 has to nave an original wide trigger, long extractor, milled panels and short chamber. Never cared for a flat side ones. That is an excellent site, I had it memorized years ago.
 

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It sounds like we are in sync. I believe the "real" C96 you describe would have to be a Conehammer.

In todays market place, Basically (GunBroker), around 50% of the, so called Red-9s, I see being auctioned and described as Red-9s are small grip "Bolos" or M1930 models that have replaced grips with a red 9 on them. I think most un-informed sellers, get as far into their research as to see an example with a large red 9 on the grip, the one they are researching has a red 9 on the grip, thus it must be a "Red-9". A true Red-9 is worth a lot more on todays market than a Chinese import Bolo or M1930. So, un-informed buyers get taken and learn later that what they paid for is not what they got. Perhaps they should have acquired a good reference book before buying a bad or false example. If basing a decision on what you have learned from YouTube you might get in trouble.

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That one is a French Contract. Here are the more common ones. Top two are DWM, the brass one is a Chinese military. I keep a handful of clips and a stock-holster handy in case I come across another C96. Comparing Conehammer to a Red9 is like comparing early DWM Luger to a 1942 BYF. They are both considered Lugers and they both shoot, but that's about it. And Red9s, Bolos and m30 models I wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole, unless for resale. I'm sorry, Guys, I am a C96 Mauser snob and I don't feel any shame about it....
 

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I don't have access to all my pictures at the moment. If I remember I will post some later. I have less than a dozen stripper clips. I have a Chinese brass one that looks just like yours. The brass seems to be to soft to work well.

I think it important to remember that Red-9s are wartime production. As such, finish is not as good as before or after. I have heard of more issues/failures occurring with Red-9s. This could be due to wartime production.

I would not say preferring Conehammers does not not make you a snob. Some have said I was not enjoying the variety of available collectables because I am primarily a Mauser collector. I find enough variety within Mausers and what is more important to me is enjoying what I collect. So, if you prefer Conehammers it cannot be held against you. At least not from my perspective.

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And that's how I can tell that you are a true C96 collector... As far as Red-9 quality goes, yes the War was going on, but... Take 1916 P08 (DWM that is, not Erfurt) and compare it to 1916 Red9 or any war-time commercial for that matter.... Truth to be told, C96 quality went down hill a few years prior to the Great War. I usually don't mess with anything with NS safety and after. Reliability issues with a Red9 are well known, the most common two are failure to feed and popping the live round out upon chambering. Another common problem with a short extractor is a chipped bolt corner, right in a half round cut out area, usually from the use of hot 9mm or Tokarev ammo and/or old, worn out springs. For anybody who reloads 7.63x25, take a look at Hornady HTP .309 90gr bullet. That was my preferred load when I used C96 for a PDW in the woods, camping, hiking and so on....
 

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What kind of confusion are you taking about? Everything is pretty clear regarding the Red-9. It never really worked as well as the original ones chambered in 7.63. I've had and shot plenty of them. Used to collect and shoot Brooms for 25 years or so.
Odd....even my mix-master Red 9 "mutts" once with new spring sets and with the proper ammo work good enough to use them in local IDPA-style matches (To the surprise of the plastic pistol crowd) and be both accurate & reliable enough to letting me finish in pretty decent positions. Original matching ones work OK too but see less range time.

I usually shoot Winchester White Box 115gr. FMJ almost exclusively but recently testing the local equivalent (FAME) has gladly surprised me. Most of my stripper clips are stamped DW and despite some being found in poor, neglected condition, after some oil and tinkering they end up being pretty reliable.
Sig 115gr. also works ok, while S&B, Federal and Remington have shown some cycling issues. Haven't tried other brands and probably won't.


3812785


Other variants are nice but useless to me since 7.63 ammo is unavailable and reloading an almost legal no-no. Wouldn't mind to own a "Schnellfeuer" though.....
 
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