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Yugoslavian M48 Mauser

 

This Yugoslavian M48 Mauser was my first military surplus rifle. It was purchased by my wife in December 2001 as a Christmas gift for me. What a great surprise it was! Little did she know at time but she was introducing me to my latest hobby.

Yugoslavia produced quite a few of these rifles that now have been brought to the surplus market in excellent condition. These 8mm rifles are great shooters that are well made and inexpensive to shoot.

 

Background

Under Nazi control, the Yugoslav people suffered a holocaust, which, when measured on a per-capita basis, was greater than the persecution of the Jews in Germany, Poland and elsewhere in Europe -- a fact that is not generally well known in the West. The most infamous of the extermination camps was located in Jasenovac, where upwards of 1.2 million Serbs, Jews, and Gypsies perished at the hands of the Nazi-led Croatian Ustashe.

When the Nazi's were finally driven out in 1944 and the war ended, the Serbs, like the Jews, said "Never Again!" To support that posture, they decided to arm the entire populace as an armed militia, even though they were then Communists. Normal gun ownership as we know it here was not allowed, but they knew that if the enemy came again, their basic defense would be the armed peasant.

The Model 1948 98k Short Rifle or otherwise called the Yugoslavian M48 is based in design on the German 98k Mauser and the Yugoslavian Model FN 30 and 24 Carbines and Rifles. It is the last military Mauser rifle (not made from parts or a rebuilt) made and was produced in Yugoslavia at the Kragujevac arsenal from 1945 until 1952. The rifles were built on German tooling, but are of a more robust construction, because the Yugoslav factories did not experience the materials shortages that cheapened the later German production.

The rifles and ammunition were dispersed to military storage facilities around the country in anticipation of WWIII. Semi-automatic infantry weapons such as the SKS and the AK47 soon made these Mauser rifles obsolete for modern combat. Even so, the Mausers were still kept in reserve and ready for service

And so it continued for over fifty years. Then the Berlin wall came down, Communism died, the Bosnian war started, and Yugoslavia broke apart with five of its seven states becoming independent countries. The newly independent countries were able to take control of the military storage facilities in their territories and sell these rifles on the international surplus weapons market.

 

Specifications
Caliber: 7.92 X 57mm (8mm Mauser)
Overall length: 43.5 inches
Barrel length: 23.25 inches
Weight (unloaded) 8.6 lbs.
Magazine: 5 round, charger loaded, staggered column box
Sights: Front: Inverted V-blade Rear: V-notch tangent leaf

Yugoslavian Crest

Yugoslavian crest on the receiver

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