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A Collectors Guide to the German Gew 88 Commission Rifle

Need help with action on Turkish 88

 
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Bill D
Soldat


Joined: 06 Oct 2010
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Wed Oct 06, 2010 5:03 pm    Post subject: Need help with action on Turkish 88 Reply with quote

I realize it isn't an actual GEW88, but I was hoping someone here can help me. I am having a difficult time finding any info on what may the problem I am facing.

I just purchased a Turkish Mauser model 88.
It looks like this:
http://www.texastradingpost.com/m88/turkconversion.html

In fact, the stamp on my receiver looks nearly identical to the one in the picture, except mine says 1937 (a year older) and is a bit cleaner.

On the side of the action, next to the thumb groove cut for loading the stripper clips, it says Gew88.

I can load it really easily. I have used both stripper clips and single loading it, and it is far easier than my Mosin Nagant. But when I close the bolt the cartridge pops up and does not load into the chamber. The rear end comes out and the round gets stuck sideways in the action. This happens for the first 3 rounds and the last 2 seem to load a little easier. They usually load in just fine.

I have not fired it yet, as I want to ensure it is working properly before hand. I am using surplus ammo in the correct caliber.

The possible problems I have come up with (and I know nothing about Mauser rifles) are:

1) the spring is too strong and needs to be tensioned back
2) it is missing some kind of a floor plate that would allow the pressure of the spring to be better utilized.
3) it is missing some kind of catch to stop the round from flying up and out before it can be fed into the chamber.

I really appreciate any help you could offer. If you need pics or video, I can post them. Thanks again.

Bill
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Nabs
Leutnant


Joined: 30 Sep 2009
Posts: 207
Location: Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Wed Oct 06, 2010 11:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like you have a Turfek 88 or one that was converted completely by the Turks in the 1930s to a more common standard firearm. They are beautiful conversions in their own right.

If I understand correctly, when you go to close and lock down the bolt while chambering a round, the round becomes stuck between the bolt face and the receiver and is wedged ? If so, I have had this happen on two of my 88s with hand loaded rounds. I find it a bit annoying as a even a soldier would be frustrated with it happening in the field.

I pull the bolt back, grab the loose round and hold it for later. Considering my 88s went to Turkey and the magazine and bolt are mismatched to the receiver, I expect this is the cause of the issue on my rifles.

Post some pictures of your Turkish lady when you get a chance Smile.
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Bill D
Soldat


Joined: 06 Oct 2010
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Thu Oct 07, 2010 4:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nabs, that's basically what's happening except it happens every time and with the first 3 rounds. It is not feeding the rounds and the back end of the cartridge ends up sticking out of the action. It is effectively rendering my rifle into a 2 shot gun. I'd like to know how I can fix this since I find it hard to believe that it was originally made this way. Something must have happened in the last 70 years to generate this problem.

Thanks for the help
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Karl
Gemeiner


Joined: 02 Jan 2010
Posts: 14
Location: Savannah

PostPosted: Thu Oct 07, 2010 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bill,

Based on your description I think a good place to begin troubleshooting is the magazine cartridge retainer - it is a spring-loaded bar that holds the cartridges in the magazine, located just below the bolt on the left side of the magazine well. I suggest that you remove and clean it (this requires removing the stock). Some possibilites are that the front end of the retainer is broken - causing the cartridges to "pop up" too soon, or that it is not fully closing at the front due to dirt or petrified grease - with the same result, or that the spring is somehow damaged or misinstalled. A lack of effective spring tension might explain why the problem occurs with the first three rounds, when they are pushed more forcefully upward.

I would add that unlike more modern designs, the 88 bolt head/extractor does not "catch" the back of the cartridge until the bolt is closed. So when the bolt is moved forward it just pushes the cartridge being loaded ahead of it. The only thing that prevents the situation you describe is that the cartridge is partly chambered when it "pops up" from the magazine.
KFS
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Nabs
Leutnant


Joined: 30 Sep 2009
Posts: 207
Location: Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Thu Oct 07, 2010 11:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Unless the mis-matched parts are a good match to the action, you won't see this problem except on the rare occasion. My Loewe is a good example of a mis-matched 88 that functions just fine. The cartridge pop up issue happens on my Erfurt the most and always with the first two rounds, the final three are fine. It happens once and a while on my Danzig and is either the first or second round.

I agree with Karl, it is probably linked to the cartridge lever and retaining spring. If any of these are mis-matched to the action, it can lead to this issue. The bolt head, as mentioned also by Karl, does not catch the round as it is being fed but when the bolt is locked down. We'll never know for certain if your rifle ever had this issue a century ago as we don't have her original parts. Keep in mind, these rifles were designed with an en-bloc clip in mind and were modified later to take the Gewehr 98 style charger clip and work with this system. I too become frustrated when it happened to me at the range as I am sure it must have happened to a German or Turkish soldier in the field. I don't have a stockpile of 88 parts handy to swap out and see if the issue really is what I think it is though.

Does anyone with an all matching 88/05 run into this issue ?
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Nabs
Leutnant


Joined: 30 Sep 2009
Posts: 207
Location: Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Thu Oct 07, 2010 11:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thought I would add this in too. I noticed my 88s hate the Winchester commercial ammo but more over they hate the round nosed bullets. I found they fed a lot smoother and better with a spire point, lead tip bullet. The cartridge pop issue still occurs every now and then with my Erfurt and Danzig with these rounds though.
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