Make: Herman Schneider located in Zella-Mehlis, Germany
Model: Custom Sporting Mauser
Serial Number: None
Year of Manufacture: Pre WWII
Caliber: 8mm Mauser (7.92x57mm)
Action Type: Bolt Action, Internal Magazine
Markings: The left side of the barrel is marked “BOHLER-STAHL” and with a small stamping at the wood line. The German word “Stahl” refers to steel and “Bohler” is a specific type of high quality steel developed for use in rifle barrels by the Germans. The rib on top of the barrel is marked “HERMAN SCHNEIDER, ZELLA-MEHLIS.”. Zella-Mehlis is the town in Germany where Schneider had his shop. The left side of the receiver is marked with two “crowns” and “St. m.G.”. The top of the magazine follower and the top of the bolt release lever are marked “58”. The extractor is marked “58” and with a “crowned letter”. The underside of the bolt handle is marked with a “crown / N”. The top of the butter knife bolt handle, the receiver, the claw mounts, the barrel shank, the rib on top of the barrel, the stock mounted safety, the pistol grip cap and most of the screws are all hand engraved. The bottom metal is ornately engraved with a “stag in a woodland scene” at the center.
The left side of the scope is marked “1 3/4X-5X / Redfield”. The underside is marked “3161716 / OTHER PAT. PEND. / KA06305”.
Barrel Length: Approximately 24 Inches
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a beaded blade set atop a ramped base. The front of the base is integral to the barrel’s rib. The rear sight is a dovetail set “U” notched blade. The top of the receiver has two claw mount bases attached. The front base is dovetail set. The rear base is secured by two screws. The sides of the rear claw mount are pulled back to insert or remove the scope. The scope has two claw mount rings attached to it. They secure properly into the bases. The wide view scope uses a duplex reticle. The glass appears clear and the target knobs turn. The power ring functions and is marked “1 ¾ 3 4 5”. The scope, rings and bases shows a few handling marks and are in about Excellent condition.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The two piece Mannlicher stock has a pistol grip, raised cheek piece, hand checkering on the grip & forearm, horn inserts/spacers between the two halves of the forearm, a horn nosecap, 2 European style sling swivels, a cutout for the bolt handle, a metal grip cap and a horn buttplate. A screw secures the front of the stock to the barrel. One of the horn inserts is chipped. The bottom rear of the buttstock is scraped. The buttplate is scratched and shows a few small holes. The wood shows other light handling marks. The LOP measures 14 1/8 inches from the face of the front of the trigger and 13 3/8 inches from the face of the rear to the back of the buttplate. The stock rates in about Fine overall condition.
Type of Finish: Blue. The trigger guard is polished horn. The nosecap and buttplate are horn.
Finish Originality: Original.
Bore Condition: The bore is bright and the rifling is deep. There is no visible erosion.
Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 98% of its metal finish. The barrel’s rib shows scrapes and light thinning on the edges. There are light marks and light scrapes on the remaining metal. Some of the screw heads show light use. The markings are crisp and elegant. Overall, this rifle rates in about Fine condition.
Mechanics: The rear trigger has been deactivated. The front trigger fires the rifle. Both safeties function. The action functions correctly. We have not fired this rifle. As with all previously owned firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork& Accessories: The rifle comes with a scope base and rings; see above. The bore has been slugged and the slug is included in the auction. A sheet marked “J BORE .318” is included.
Our Assessment: This rare custom Mauser was made by Herman Schneider. The work was done prior to WWII in Zella-Mehlis, Germany. There is not much written on Herman Schneider (which screams Rare!) but he is listed as a German Gunmaker from 1914 to 1939 (see http://www.archivingindustry.com/Gunsandgunmakers/directory-s.pdf). The rifle is beautiful. It has ornate engraving on the metal, a half octagon barrel, hand checkering on the Mannlicher stock and engraved claw mounts atop the receiver. The two piece stock has horn inserts, the nosecap is horn, the buttplate is horn and the rifles trigger is also made of polished horn. The bore is bright and the deep blue finish is almost intact. The rifle comes with a nice scope that mounts properly to the rifle. This is an ideal Mauser for the collector.