Make: bcd (In 1944 “bcd” was the Nazi code for Gustloff Werke Weimar). Production of the G43 was never started at the Weimar site. It was moved to SS run Buchenwald Concentration Camp “Gustloff Werke II”.
Model: Gewehr 43, later Karabiner 43 (G43, K43, Gew 43, Kar 43)
Serial Number: 7615
Year of Manufacture: 1944
Caliber: 8mm Mauser (7.92x57mm)
Action Type: Semi Auto, Detachable Magazine
Markings: There is no visible import mark. The left side of the receiver is marked with a partially stamped Nazi “eagle / swastika”, with a Gustloff Werke “star burst” proof, “bcd”, with the serial number, “G 43” and with a second Nazi “eagle / swastika”. The rear of the receiver is marked “V”. The top of the barrel, just in front of the receiver, is marked “r / n” and “P”. The left side of the barrel, just in front of the receiver, is marked with a partial Nazi “eagle / WaA134” and with a “star”. The top rear of the top cover is marked with a Nazi Waffenamt “WaA44”. The underside of the sight escalator and the left side of the trigger are both marked with a Gustloff Werke “circled V” inspection stamp. The gas piston cylinder is marked with the serial number and “.05”. The right sling well is marked with a Nazi “eagle / swastika”. The left sling well is marked “2”. The left side of the butt is marked with two faded Nazi Waffenamts. The bottom Waffenamt appears read “eagle / WaA749”. See photos.
The bottom left of the magazine is marked “acw”, with a Nazi Waffenamt “WaAA98” and “K43”.
Barrel Length: Approximately 21 ¾ Inches
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a bladed post set under a protective hood. The rear sight is a “V” notched sliding escalator marked from “1-12”. The right side of the receiver has integral rail for an optic.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The two piece laminate stock has a pistol grip, metal nosecap with sling loop, hole for the included cleaning rod, through bolt, sling well with pass through and a metal buttplate with hinged door for storage. The handguard shows a long crack along the top that extends to the rear (see photos). The crack has been repaired (glued) along the top. The left side of the butt shows a filled crack at the buttplate. The wood shows other scrapes scratches and compression marks; most are on the butt. These marks have been oiled. The buttplate door has is broken at the internal hinge; it is glued in place. The buttplate shows scratches, discoloration from oxidation and some surface erosion. The buttplate is slightly proud of the wood at the bottom. The LOP measures 13 ½ inches from the front of the trigger to the back of the buttplate. The stock rates in about Very Good overall condition, as repaired.
Type of Finish: Blue
Finish Originality: Original. The top of the bolt carrier and bottom metal have been refinished.
Bore Condition: The bore is grey and the rifling is well defined. There is erosion present.
Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 93% of its metal finish. The top of the bolt carrier and bottom metal have been refinished. The front sight shows scrapes, thinning and pin prick surface erosion. The barrel and nosecap show scrapes, small scratches and discoloration. The top cover shows scrapes and thinning. The bottom metal shows scrapes, scratches and some discoloration. The top of the receiver shows thinning consistent with cycling. The screw heads are intact. The markings are deep. Overall, this rifle rates in about Very Good Plus condition.
Mechanics: 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 one 10 round magazine that shows scratches, areas of thinning and small areas of pin prick surface erosion. It is in about Very Good condition. The rifle also comes with a brown leather sling that shows scrapes, a few thin scratches and light cracking. The metal buckles show surface erosion. The sling is in about Very Good condition.
Our Assessment: This is a Rare Gewehr 43 (G43) semiautomatic rifle made by Gustloff Werke Weimar. There were only a few factories that made the G43. The G43 had its designation changed to Karabiner 43 (K43) in mid 1944; the rifles markings were also changed. Gustloff Werke was the second firm to produce the G43 but did not manage to do so until 1944 as production was moved to SS run Buchenwald Concentration Camp “Gustloff Werke II”. Prisoners were used to produce the G43 at Buchenwald. The Gustloff factory at the Buchenwald Concentration Camp was destroyed by the RAF on August 24, 1944 ending their production of G43 rifles. For these reasons a Gustloff marked G43 is a Rare weapon to find. It will add nicely to your collection.
For more on the production of the G43 at the Buchenwald Concentration Camp “Gustloff Werke II” see pages 100 to 111 of Darrin Weavers book, Hitler’s Garands German Self-Loading Rifles of World War II. The book also details sabotage at Buchenwald by prisoners producing the G43.