08 April 2009
Mauser Blues ...
About 6 years ago, a friend of mine bought this old Turkish Mauser at a gun show to add to his collection of WWII era battle rifles. A year later he offered it to me for $50 after deciding to downsize for his move out of state . He never had the chance to shoot it as the firing pin was broken, so it sat in my gun cabinet awaiting some attention ...

1938 Turkish Mauser, mfg.1944

Eventually i got around to buying a new firing pin off of GunBroker, but the darn thing still wouldn't go bang because the 'hits' on the primer were too light. So like an out of style sweater, it hung in the closet sat in the gun cabinet for a couple of more lonely years awaiting someone to fit the firing pin.

Maybe it was the weather breaking or maybe just the guilt of seeing such an old treasure sitting around, that got me to tear it down and give it some serious thought. The first thing was to determine how far that the firing pin would protrude from the bolt, and then figure out how to make it work. It would seem that the shoulder that fits down inside the bolt was holding it back. So looking around on the internet for some advice on how to properly fit the firing pin led me to someone's blog whom not only seems to enjoy this stuff, but takes excellent pictures and explains them so well that even Forrest could understand them without his momma ...

There isn't much sense in my trying to explain what he has already done so well, so after you go take a good look, come on back and see what else i had to do ...

Did you get all that? Good. OK, my first mistake was not measuring the firing pin protrusion while it was assembled in the bolt. Instead i tore the bolt down and took a static measurement with just the firing pin inside the bolt. It measured a perfect .030" which is what this particular variant specs. at. If it would have been measured like CarteachO describes, it should have (by my calculations) measured around .015". That would indicate that i probably had the wrong firing pin to begin with ... oh well, ya lives and ya learns, i guess ...

The Bolt

Field Stripped


To get the the firing pin to fit far enough into the bolt, the shoulders had to be squared off and the base trimmed down a bit. Here is a comparison of the one being fitted(L) and the old firing pin(R)

After re-assembling the bolt, i whip out my calipers to take a measurement and find out it's .015". I now feel like Tommy Boy Callahan after bumping my head ... SON OF A ...

Damn ... OK, so now we are ready to destroy a perfectly good striker by filing .030" to .050" off of it . File, Re-assemble, Measure ... Rinse.Repeat.

This measured .835" before filing

A couple of hours (and aching fingers) later we now have a protrusion of .040". Unfortunately, the striker has now been shortened so far that the safety is a little 'stiff' to engage. So whenever this firing pin needs replaced the striker will too.

Two unfired rounds showing the primer strikes, before(L) and after the modification(R).

Another view ...

This is a comparison between one that was struck twice, once before the modification (didn't fire) and once afterwards (it did fire)[L] and a .22-250 [R]

It has a raised ring around the strike, possibly from the stretching of the material. Any ideas? Since the firing pin seems to be 'all out of adjustment', then the lot of this old Turk 1935-38 ammo with the bum primers are going to be torn down and re-assembled with new primers ... Doing that should keep me out of trouble for awhile ...

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posted by Johnnyreb™ at 9:55 AM | Permalink |


At April 8, 2009 at 10:48 PM, Blogger Carteach

I understand some of that old 8mm ammo can be a bit warm. It's possible the pressure is extruding the metal of the primer into the firing pin hole in the bolt face, around the firing pin.

The firing pin should pretty much fill the hole when it's forward in the firing position. If the hole is a bit bigger than the firing pin, or the bolt face is cratered around the firing pin hole, then you will see extrusion like in the photograph.


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