Help Identify My Vintage Mauser 300S Rifle
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  1. #1
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    Default Help Identify My Vintage Mauser 300S Rifle

    Hi,
    I recently came across this vintage bolt action rifle and know very little about it. I was told that it is a Mauser set up for 300S rounds. At the time, I didn't realize how old the gun was, but after examining it more closely, it seems that the receiver fits the wooden stock perfectly. This leads me to believe that the gun has not been modified, and that it may not be a Mauser at all (although it looks very similar to the M24). The strap lock is fixed to the side of the stock, which characterizes a German-made military rifle. It is also equipped with a long range pop up iron sight set up for various ranges. I believe the magazine can hold 3 shots. The serial number of the barrel and the bolt both read, "891". The entire serial number for the receiver is 28891. Also, the stock on this gun is very short. I know that the 300 Savage round was not created until 1920, but this gun appears to be 1920s-1940s. If anyone can give me any insight as to the history or model of this gun, I would appreciate it very much.
    Thanks!
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  2. #2
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    Welcome to the forum. It's not German--it's Japanese. My guess is a sporterized type 99
    Arisaka. If it looks around 30 caliber, the original chambering was 7.7 Jap.

    Someone will be along shortly with vastly more knowledge than me---but I do
    recognize a Japanese rifle when I see one.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the quick response! That's interesting, and I think you're onto something. I know that Savage Arms is an American company, but is there any way that the receiver could still be original? It does not say "Savage Arms" only "300S." Did other countries (such as Japan) use this caliber prior to WWII? If it is sporterized, it must have been done very well and a very long time ago. The wood stock, especially on the bottom of the gun near the trigger and magazine cover, fits the metal receiver 100% perfectly at all of the curves. The gun also has a pop-up leaf sight which I thought could either be indicative of use in WWI or II. I don't know if this helps anyone, but there is either an "I" or an "H" stamped before the Serial # on the barrel. Also, does anyone have a guess on the value of the gun?
    Thanks again!

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  5. #4
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    The Arisaka was not the most popular rifle to re-chamber or sporterize, but there are a bunch
    of them out there.

    Value? Maybe $150 tops for yours if you can find anybody that wants it.

    Only way to tell for sure what the caliber is is to have a chamber cast made. That said, it could
    very well be a Arisaka modified to 300 Savage. Look at your picture with the sight flipped up.
    See the gap between the wood and barrel where the barrel is tapered just in front of the receiver?
    I'm GUESSING that the barrel was "set back" and re-chambered to 300 Savage.

    Do you see any signs of modification to the internal magazine box? The 300 Savage is a half inch+
    shorter than the original Japanese cartridge.


    One of the problem with this conversion (and the much more common conversion to 30-06) is
    that the Arisaka bore runs .312-.313--and 300 Savage uses a .308 bullet. Accuracy may or may
    not be OK.

  6. #5
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    Hmm, thanks for all of the help. You really know your stuff. I didn't buy it as an investment, so there's no real disappointment with the price. Any idea of what the potential age of both the stock and the 300S receiver could be? I'll probably call Savage tomorrow to ask about the serial #.
    Thanks!

  7. #6
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    Call Savage if you want, they won't have a clue. They didn't build it.

    It's a Japanese Arisaka rifle.
    Somehow it came to America. In a soldiers duffle bag,
    imported to be sold surplus--whatever.
    Someone in the states chopped the stock, cut/shortened/re-threaded
    the barrel and chambered it in "300S". Whatever that is. We are
    guessing it's 300 Savage.

  8. #7
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    I hate to seem ignorant, but It's got American serial numbers on the side of the receiver, and two Japanese characters stamped onto the barrel. The serial on the barrel matches that of the receiver in regular numeric characters, so I realize that it's not an original Arisaka receiver. If it wasn't made by Savage, who manufactured it? I thought that you meant the bolt assembly and barrel of a Savage .300 rifle were placed onto a modified Arisaka type 99 stock. But I guess I misunderstood you. The serial number must be for some American company, and mean something. And why does it have Japanese characters stamped on an American barrel? I understand if you don't have the time to explain all of this out to me, but I am very curious about this gun.
    Thanks again!

  9. #8
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    Now I just found out that the markings after the serial on the receiver indicate it was made as part of the Toyo Kogyo Arsenal. So the receiver and serial are Japanese. I really am kind of confused. I know I shouldn't rely on you guys to teach me everything, so I'll keep doing some research. But any insight you'd like to provide me with is greatly appreciated.
    Thanks

  10. #9
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    Arisaka rifles used arabic numerals for the serial number. Darned if I know why, but they did. I've owned a half
    dozen of them over the years--every one had the serial number in arabic numerals on the left side of the receiver.

    No part of your rifle is "made in America". It's pure Japanese, modified into a "sporter" rifle here in the USA.

    As to the other markings on your gun, go here: [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    I'm pretty sure that the barrel is original to the rifle (although I believe it's been set back and re-chambered). No gunsmith worth a hoot would screw in a shiny new barrel and keep that rear sight!
    Last edited by BillM; 08-11-2013 at 08:14 PM.

  11. #10
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    That clears things up a lot! So mine is a series 34. Pretty cool to know even if the modifications take away most of the value. I really appreciate all of your help!

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