Editor’s Pick: ARs Sold Out? Think Mauser!

Editor’s Pick: ARs Sold Out? Think Mauser!

Mauser Military Rifles of the World, Fifth Edition, is the definitive source on the Mauser rifle.

As Washington has managed to squeeze past most of the fiscal cliff brou-ha-ha, the attentions of our various politicians will quickly turn to gun control.

We’ve heard all sorts of tales, short and tall, about gun retailers selling out of AR-types and their relevant ammunition. ARs, in all their various configurations, are generally fine firearms, and if you want one and can still find one at a reasonable cost, go right ahead. But if no, perhaps you should be looking elsewhere.

Where, you might ask? Well, how about some of the many, many Mauser actions that are so often found at gun shows and on the used racks of your favorite local gun stores. Some would say this is the most prolific of military actions, and more than a few sporting actions derive from it.

They are hardy, accurate, can be sporterized and customized, and are available in calibers for which finding ammunition isn’t a great challenge. Want to know more? Then we strongly suggest you take a look at Robert W.D. Ball’s Mauser Military Rifles of the World, Fifth Edition.

This is a masterful collection of important facts, photos, and trivia about the world’s most popular bolt action, including some of the earliest variations that took blackpowder, and chapters on rare and highly collectible Mausers.

Heck, every once in a while someone finds a Van Gogh in their grandmother’s attic — with this book, you may just find a “Van Gogh” Mauser behind that $50 price tag at the local gun show.

Resources for Mauser Collectors

Mauser Military Rifles of the World, 5th EditionMauser Military Rifles of the World, 5th Ed.

Mauser Pricing Download

Mauser Long Guns Exploded Gun Drawing Download

Mauser 1898 Assembly/Disassembly Instructions Download

Standard Catalog of Military Firearms, 6th Edition


  1. It’s a fact, not a tale, that there is a run on ARs. Not just complete systems but parts as well. Many build their own AR, as I do, and lower receivers are not as plentiful or cheap as they were. Why someone looking for a semi-auto, gas operated, magazine fed multiple use weapon would than settle for a surplus bolter would surprise me. There are so many semi-auto weapons, many with higher capacity after market magazines that will easily outshoot and outperform an AR in 5.56. One inexpensive example is a Remington 7200, 30-06, 16.25 bbl, with aftermarket 15 round mags, and will never be classified by the gun grabbers as an assault weapon. Ammo is as cheap if not cheaper than 5.56. So I agree with the author In her basic premise that their are alternatives, because there are. I think the AR is over rated compared to what is available. Mausers are outstanding actions and is why they are still around after 100 yrs. ARs are an excellent platform, especially in heavier calibers. Keep an open mind, look at terminal performance and your needs. Can’t hunt big game with 5.56 for a good reason. .

  2. Jennifer, as a former professional journalist, I know how you can lose sight of prices and such in all the deadline pressures, etc. But you need to take a quick scan of some of the auction sites. I would suggest you go to the following website, the “Gun StockMarket”:


    It’s a great place to keep your finger on the pulse of the gun buying market – and a place you can find some real bargains on at the same time! Terrific site!

    I would dearly LOVE to find a good Mauser – heck, even a crappy Mauser – for $50 at one of our local gun shows, a flea market or even a garage sale. (I know miracles do happen, but…) I can’t even find a “giveaway” .22 rifle for less than $89.95 unless I have to equip it with a new stock, barrel and action. The magazines might still be good, but the rest needs replacement..

  3. I think the old military rifles are indeed a great bargain but was really shocked by the price Jennifer mentioned: “Heck, every once in a while someone finds a Van Gogh in their grandmother’s attic — with this book, you may just find a “Van Gogh” Mauser behind that $50 price tag at the local gun show.”

    $50!!!???? If I could still find Mausers, Mosin Nagants or even Carcanos at that price I think I would buy them all! Over twenty years ago I was able to get an Argentine Mauser at that price – but ammo for it is not commonly available. I wonder when was the last time Jennifer went to a gun show and checked prices? Her $50 price must have come from the her early career in the early 1990s when I picked up that old Mauser. Today the cheapest Mosin-Nagants are more than double that,and the ‘off country’ Turkish and South American variety Mausers in odd calibers are going for four times that.


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