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Mauser C96

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The Mauser C/96 was a pistol that was used by Germany prior to, and during World War II.

Description

Originally produced by German arms manufacturer Mauser from 1896 to 1937, the C/96 had a 13.9 centimeter barrel, a tangent rear sight, and a fixed 10 round magazine or a detachable 10-20 round box magazine. The total length of the C/96 was 30.9 centimeters while its weight was about 1.2 kilograms.[1] It was nicknamed "Broomhandle" due to its grip looking like one and it took the 7.63x25mm Mauser Cartridge or the 9x19mm Luger Parabellum Cartridge. The Mauser had an effective range of about 50 meters and it could even fit a shoulder stock, making it an artillery carbine and providing increased accuracy.

Variants

Standard Variants

  • M712 "Schnellfeuer": A Spanish variant built by the bicycle company, Beistegui Hermanos, and Astra. It had a detachable 10 or 20 round magazine and could be set to fully automatic. It was used by the Wehrmacht.
  • M1921 Mauser "Bolo": A variant with the shortened 9.9 centimeter barrel exported to the Baltics and Eastern Europe. It was mainly used by the Red Army in World War II.
  • M1930 Mauser: A model built with the original 13.9 centimeter barrel in early production, later elongated to 14 centimeters. It was exported to the civillian market used by the Luftwaffe.

Export Variants

  • M1314: A contracted export model produced for Turkey in 1897. It was designated by the Islamic calendar's year instead of the Gregorian.
  • M1889: A contracted export model produced for the Italian Navy. Only minor differences including insignia and markings.
  • M1910: A contracted export model produced for Persia. Minor differences including insignia and markings.
  • M1912 Export: An export model designed for foreign markets including China and South America.
  • M1916: A contracted export model produced for Austro-Hungary. Minor differences including insignia and markings.
  • M1920: A variant produced for the French police. The barrel was shortened to 9.9 cm, the iron sights were fixed, and the "Broomhandle" grip was made from ebonite instead of wood.

Copies

  • Astra 900: A Spanish pistol based on the Mauser. It was fully-automatic and had a longer barrel of 16 centimeters. Later variants had multiple fire settings, wooden shoulder stock, removable 20-round magazines, and different barrel lengths. It was used by the Spanish Republicans and the Wehrmacht.
  • Shanxi Type 17: A model produced by the Chinese Warlord Yen Hsi-Shan, who ruled the Shanxi province from 1912 to 1949. The Shanxi was chambered in .45 ACP to standardize the cartridge with Yen's other troops, who were being equipped with Thompson submachine guns, also firing .45 ACP.

History

The Mauser C/96 was designed by Josef, Fidel, and Friedrich Feederle and was patented in 1895.[2] Production of this gun began in 1896 and it first saw service in war during the Boer War. It had also been issued to German troops during World War I and some troops were still using them during World War II. While they were certainly not as prestigious as the famed P08 Luger, it was still sought after by American troops after securing the battlefield. They were not just used by Germany, but also by Spain, the Soviet Union, Italy, France and China. In fact, the Chinese had made a large amount of licensed copies along with many other countries.

References

  1. http://www.rt66.com/~korteng/smallarms/mauser96.htm
  2. http://world.guns.ru/handguns/hg/de/mauser-c-96-e.html


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