Steyr Mannlicher 1903 6.5x54MM Schoenauer, 1903-24

SOLD FOR: $1,276.00

Make: Oesterreichische Waffenfabrik- Gesellschaft Steyr

Model: 1903 Mannlicher Schoenauer

Serial Number: 1695

Year of Manufacture: 1903-1924 (In 1924, the action was lengthened and the bolt release was changed from a button to a flatter shape.)

Caliber: 6.5x54mm Mannlicher Schoenauer

Action Type: Bolt Action Rifle with Internal Rotary Magazine

Markings: The left side of the receiver is marked “OESTERR. WAFFENFABR.-GES.STEYR”. The right side of the barrel shank is marked “1695”. The top of the receiver’s chamber ring is marked “Patent / Mannlicher / Schoenauer / M1903” in fine checkering/matting. The left of the chamber ring is marked with crown over “V”. The left side of the barrel shank is marked “NITRO PROVED”, lion over “GP”, crown over “V”, “256” (.256 is the standard measurement for the 6.5x54MS), and crown over “CP”. The bottom of the bolt handle is marked “95”, the top has a crown over “V”. The belly of the stock, just behind the grip cap is marked “41086”.

Barrel Length: 22 1/2”

Sights / Optics: The front sight is Lyman brass beaded blade dovetailed into a banded mount at the front of the barrel. The rear sight is a 2 leaf express sight dovetailed into a boss near the rear of the barrel. The front leaf is folding and the rear leaf fixed. Both leaves are “V” notched and the front face of the rear leaf is marked “100”, the front “200”. The front leaf has a vertical line aiming reference, the rear a triangle, we believe both references are platinum-plated. There is no provision for mounting a scope.

Stock Configuration & Condition: The stock is one-piece checkered walnut with capped pistol grip, monte-carlo comb, ventilated orange rubber Mershon White Line recoil pad and sling swivels front and rear. The grip cap has a cleverly concealed plug on a small compartment for storage of small items such as patches, peep sight inserts, etc. Currently, it only stores two patches. The stock has some scattered light compressions, scuffs and drag lines. There are no chips or cracks. The checkering is well defined with light handling wear. The LOP measures 13 5/8″ from the front of the trigger to the back of the recoil pad, 12 1/2″ to the back of the wood. The pad has hardened with age with wear and slight loss around the edges, in about Good condition. Overall, the stocks are in about Very Good-plus condition as possibly not original to the gun (see Our Assessment).

Type of Finish: Blued

Finish Originality: Original, the bolt may have been touched-up with Cold Blue

Bore Condition: The bore is bright-gray with light wear in pronounced rifling. There is some very light erosion in the grooves at the muzzle-end.

Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 96% of its metal finish. There is light thinning at some edges. The barrel has a few scattered light marks. The receiver shows light handling marks. The bolt and receiver show operational wear and the bolt body has a streaky, reddish discoloration we believe may be a touch-up. The trigger guard has a few light marks. The screw heads are mostly sharp with a few showing very light tool marks. The markings are clear. Overall, this rifle rates in about Very Good to Fine condition.

Mechanics: The action functions correctly. It has a Mauser style safety on the back of the bolt which blocks the triggers and locks the bolt. There is a rotating latch at the front of the trigger guard, but it doesn’t seem to do anything. The rifle has a rotary magazine with a push-button release on the right side of the receiver at the port. There is a bolt release on the left rear of the receiver. We did not fire this rifle. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance requirements.

Box, Paperwork & Accessories: None

Our Assessment: The Mannlicher-Schoenauer rifle dates to 1903 when the 6.5x54mm cartridge and both military and civilian rifles to shoot it were introduced. Austria and Greece adopted the 1903 military rifle and the 6.5×54 cartridge that same year. The 1903 Mannlicher rifles and carbines were the last designs of Ferdinand Ritter Von Mannlicher, who died the next year, and his friend Otto Schönauer who designed the exceptional rotary drum magazine intrinsic to all Mannlicher-Schoenauer rifles. Mannlicher-Schoenauer rifles and carbines were exclusively manufactured at Oesterreichische Waffenfabrik Gesellschaft Steyr in Steyr, Austria. The Model 1903 rifle as the first of the famous M-S Rifles and Carbines and it established the basic design of all the models that were to follow. The rifles were equipped with flat “butter knife” bolt handles and rotary magazines. This rifle has a 22 1/2” barrel chambered in 6.5x54mm M-S. The rifle features a “butter knife” bolt handle, express sights, and a small, but clever storage compartment under the grip cap. The rifle is in about Very Good to Fine overall condition with about 96% of its finish remaining. The bore is bright-gray, tending more to gray at the muzzle, with light wear in the pronounced rifling and some light erosion at the muzzle end. This is a nice-looking rifle built with typical German-Austrian craftsmanship just after the turn of the century. This rifle would be a nice addition to any collection of early German bolt action sporting rifles and would make just as excellent a hunting rifle today as it did a century ago. Please see our photos and good luck!

CA Legal or CA Private Party Transferable: This C&R eligible rifle can be transferred/sold in California.

Steyr Mannlicher 1903 6.5x54MM Schoenauer, 1903-24
Steyr Mannlicher 1903 6.5x54MM Schoenauer, 1903-24