Mannlcher Schoenauer M1903 'Takedown' 6.5x54mm

ElmerThud

Handloader
Jul 16, 2011
769
15
Well here it is all done.

My 1922 proofed 6.5x54 Mannlicher Schoenauer M1903 'Takedown' and it's 8x56 Schmidt & Bender with 30mm tube ready to go.

A brilliant job with exactly the right parts & set as low as it can go to allow minimum barrel clearance and the wing safety to operate.

The exact info for this job is as follows:
So, the scope to go on my little beauty is a Schmidt & Bender 8x56 Klassik, 30mm tube, with the part numbers as listed below in case anyone should be thinking to do the same with a similar rifle, this is what will work and the scope will be mounted to give the lowest possible viewing height.

Front dovetail half saddle mount (in the white & requires blueing/blacking) located in front of the rear iron sight - Recknagel 50000-0617
Front dovetail claw socket fits into the half saddle mount - Ziegler Z238ZG0301
Front Objective scope ring (with claws) - Ziegler Z075ZA0562

Rear locking base mount (in the white & requires blueing/blacking) - Recknagel 53035-0000
Rear scope ring with offset extended leg Recknagel 56000-3026 - this requires milling to correct height and fitment into base mount (also in the white & requires blueing/blacking)

The total cost of these parts in the UK has been just short of £400 and are only available in the UK via the manufacturers main importers. This doesn't include the labour, around 32hours total, of careful preparation, milling and finishing work. Then away to be re-blacked...weeks & weeks!

The work was done by an engineer at my place of work under my instruction/direction and then all the metal parts sent away for blueing/reblacking. The reason for doing this was, after the preparation, polishing and cleaning to solder the front base to the barrel, it all gets rather messy and requires a near complete re-finishing of the metalwork. Looks great now though.

Finally, the end result is - I got the exact scope I wanted onto this lovely rifle while also preserving ALL the original manufacturers engraving work untouched. Magic!

Photo's show the finished job.
 

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DrMike

Ballistician
Nov 8, 2006
35,467
2,248
Lovely. The cartridge is too good to pass into oblivion. The rifle--classic. The scope--optical perfection. Excellent acquisition, ET!
 

ElmerThud

Handloader
Jul 16, 2011
769
15
Thank guys, tried a fresh load this morning & not the greatest result. I only had 12 rounds made up though. The rifle shot sweetly enough, not too much cartridge pressure, but these were with 140gn SST's.
Next time will be with 160 Hornady RN bullets.
It is a lovely little rifle, but hey, the weight has changed since scoping it. (y)
 

filmjunkie4ever

Handloader
May 4, 2011
1,466
101
Beautiful job! This is a great looking rifle, no doubt you will have it shooting well in no time!

Thanks for sharing -

Dale
 

SJB358

Ballistician
Dec 24, 2006
31,398
757
DrMike":2u3dmzcs said:
Lovely. The cartridge is too good to pass into oblivion. The rifle--classic. The scope--optical perfection. Excellent acquisition, ET!

Exactly!! Couldn't have said it better.
 

ElmerThud

Handloader
Jul 16, 2011
769
15
Thanks for your kind comments folks. It has taken eleven months since I bought the rifle, to get where it is now. So yesterday I fired my first scoped loads...only twelve rounds, Made so I could just set a benchmark. Used most of them just getting onto a zero.

The load wasn't the greatest, but I bought some proper 160gn RN Hornady to use...the weight & type of bullet the rifle was designed to shoot.

So, today, load some more ammo for serious testing.
Our UK clocks just went forward one hour, British Summer Time...so I just woke up & found I lost an hour :roll: :roll:
 

35 Whelen

Handloader
Dec 22, 2011
2,075
7
Elmer,
Its always a great feeling to compleate a carefully executed project, really came out lovely, with that totally classic look!
Good job well done!
E
 

Guy Miner

Master Loader
Apr 6, 2006
16,771
1,786
What an interesting project! Well executed.

That scope has got to be excellent in low-light...

Regards, Guy
 

Rigbymauser

Handloader
Nov 3, 2012
496
0
Thanks for sharing Elmer.

I have had a few M1903s over the years but they always ended up selling to someone who slept on my doorstep till they got. After seeing yours I have decided next time I´ll stump into a nice one i will add it to the collection.

Them 1903s in either stutzen(carbine) or büchsen(rifle) are slick rifles. They are true pirschbüchsen(stalking rifles). They don´t make ém like any more...that´s for sure. The sad part(or good part) is not many overhere cherish old classic rifles like the one you have posted. They often go for next-to-nothing because not many like them or isn´t able to see the craftmanship put into these guns.
Like commercial Mausers the Mannlicher Schönauers were litterately handfitted even though is was a socalled productionline gun. Each part were handfitted, tested and tried until their Master gunsmith went through the final inspection.
 

ElmerThud

Handloader
Jul 16, 2011
769
15
Rigbymauser":2d300xv4 said:
Thanks for sharing Elmer.

I have had a few M1903s over the years but they always ended up selling to someone who slept on my doorstep till they got. After seeing yours I have decided next time I´ll stump into a nice one i will add it to the collection.

Them 1903s in either stutzen(carbine) or büchsen(rifle) are slick rifles. They are true pirschbüchsen(stalking rifles). They don´t make ém like any more...that´s for sure. The sad part(or good part) is not many overhere cherish old classic rifles like the one you have posted. They often go for next-to-nothing because not many like them or isn´t able to see the craftmanship put into these guns.
Like commercial Mausers the Mannlicher Schönauers were litterately handfitted even though is was a socalled productionline gun. Each part were handfitted, tested and tried until their Master gunsmith went through the final inspection.

I guess the problems with 'modernising' these old rifles and mounting new optics properly is difficult and expensive, this is due to the split rear bridge, so lots of folk are deterred by that.
It's also difficult to place scope mounts on the rifle without disfiguring the original makers engravings. But it can be done and I have done this with mine, preserving all the markings.

However, the rifles themselves, whether stutzen (carbine) or rifles, or indeed 'Takedown' rifles as mine is, are indeed a beautiful work of engineering.
The rotary magazine is simply stunning as a 'stand alone' piece and the action of the bolt so smooth and slick that with a finger pulling the trigger, the bolt will slide home and lock using only gravity. There are very few actions can boast that degree of engineering.
And in my case, with my rifle, this was all done in 1922. 94 years old and still perfect!

I am looking at a MSch Stutzen in Denmark right now and negotiating it's purchase. It is a later 1960's model Steyr, Daimler-Puch, Steyr in 7x57. Price is agreed and now I'm trying to arrange shipping to UK. It's not so easy, but I think I have an arrangement taking shape now.
The rifle is in appearance very very clean, but I haven't yet been to Denmark to view it.

Thankyou to all you guys and your very kind comments. I really appreciate them.
Cheers, ET
 

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DrMike

Ballistician
Nov 8, 2006
35,467
2,248
I'm really looking forward to the addition of the 7X57. What a great complement to the 6X54! Were I to find a MSch chambered in 7X57, I do believe I would snag it post haste.
 

ElmerThud

Handloader
Jul 16, 2011
769
15
DrMike":3ncghj1w said:
I'm really looking forward to the addition of the 7X57. What a great complement to the 6X54! Were I to find a MSch chambered in 7X57, I do believe I would snag it post haste.

I'm certainly hoping negotiations to get this stutzen shipped to UK work out Mike. It looks a lovely piece and even my wife agrees...for goodness sake though, no one must say how much I spend on these things :lol:
 

DrMike

Ballistician
Nov 8, 2006
35,467
2,248
ElmerThud":1ywp9rk4 said:
I'm just hoping to get it shipped Scotty...we shall see :roll:

I'm really pulling for you, ET! Sure hope you're able to secure that rifle.
 
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