Mannlicher M1895

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Repeating Rifle Model 1895
Mannlicher M1895 from the Swedish Army Museum.jpg
Mannlicher M1895 Rifle. From the collections of the Swedish Army Museum.
Type Bolt-action rifle
Place of origin Austria-Hungary
Service history
In service 1895–1945
1895–1918 Austria-Hungary
Used by See Users
Wars Boxer Rebellion
First Balkan War
Second Balkan War
World War I
Revolutions and interventions in Hungary (1918–20)
Second Italo-Ethiopian War
Spanish Civil War[1]
World War II
Production history
Designer Ferdinand Mannlicher
Designed 1895
Manufacturer Œ.W.G. in Steyr
F.G.GY. in Budapest
Zbrojovka Brno
Produced 1896–1920
Number built approx. 3,500,000[2]
Variants See Variants
Specifications (M95 Long Rifle)
Weight 3.78 kilograms (8.3 lb)
Length 127.2 centimetres (50.1 in)
Barrel length 76.5 centimetres (30.1 in)

Cartridge M95: 8×50mmR
M95/30 & M95/31: 8×56mmR
M95M & M95/24: 8×57mm IS
Action Straight-pull bolt action
Rate of fire approx. 30-35 rounds/min
Muzzle velocity M93 cartridge: 620 m/s (2,000 ft/s)
M30 cartridge: 720 m/s (2,400 ft/s)
Feed system 5-round en bloc clip (stripper clip in M95/24 and M95M), internal box magazine
Sights Rear V-notch flip-up sight and front post (telescopic sight on sniper variant)

The Repeating Rifle Model M1895, better known as the Mannlicher M1895 is a bolt-action rifle, designed by Ferdinand Ritter von Mannlicher that used a refined version of his revolutionary straight-pull action bolt, much like the Mannlicher M1890 carbine. It was nicknamed the Ruck-Zu(rü)ck (German slang for "back and forth") by Landser (a German term for "troops").

The M1895 is unusual in employing a straight-pull bolt action, as opposed to the more common rotating bolt-handle of other rifles. It consequently renowned for combining a high rate of fire (around 30–35 rounds per minute) with reliability and sturdiness, although this requires decent care and maintenance with an extractor that is vulnerable to breakage due to a lack of primary extraction.

History[edit]

Austro-Hungarian soldiers armed with Mannlicher M1895 Stutzens at the Isonzo front.

It was initially adopted and employed by the Austro-Hungarian Army throughout World War I, and retained post-war by both the Austrian and Hungarian armies. The main foreign user was Bulgaria, which, starting in 1903, acquired large numbers and continued using them throughout both Balkan and World Wars. After Austria-Hungary's defeat in World War I, many were given to other Balkan states as war reparations. A number of these rifles also saw use in World War II, particularly by second line, reservist, and partisan units in Romania, Yugoslavia, Italy, and to lesser degree, Germany. Post war many were sold as cheap surplus, with some finding their way to the hands of African guerrillas in the 1970s[citation needed] and many more being exported to the United States as sporting and collectible firearms. The M1895 bolt also served as an almost exact template for the ill-fated Canadian M1905 Ross rifle, though the later M1910 used a complicated interrupted-thread instead of two solid lugs.

Ammunition[edit]

Round nosed 8x50R cartridge.

The M1895 was originally chambered in the 8mm M.1893 scharfe Patrone (8×50mmR Mannlicher) cartridge. Between the world wars, both Austria and Hungary converted the majority of their rifles to fire the more powerful 8×56mmR round. Yugoslavia[3] converted at least some of their captured M1895s to 7.92×57mm Mauser, fed by stripper clips instead of the original model's en bloc clip system. This conversion was designated M95/24 and M95M. The M95/24 is often mistakenly attributed to Bulgaria, but 8×57mm IS was never a standard cartridge of the Bulgarian military.[4] These conversions are prized by collectors for their relative scarcity and chambering in a commonly available round, but suffer from a fragile extractor and a lack of replacement parts.

Variants[edit]

M95 Rifle[edit]

This was the basic variant. It was chambered for the 8x50mmR Mannlicher cartridge. Its iron sights were graduated from 300-2600 paces (225-1950m). It was used during World War I by majority of the Austro-Hungarian Army troops.

M95 Stuzten[edit]

This Stuzten or short rifle was mainly used by special troops (i.e. Storm troops) during WWI and auxiliary soldiers during WWII. It chambered the 8x50mmR Mannlicher cartridge. Its sights were graduated from 500-2400 paces (375-1800m).

Weight: 3.09 kilograms (6.8 lb)
Length: 1,003 millimetres (39.5 in)
Barrel length: 500 millimetres (20 in)

M95 Carbine[edit]

It was chambered 8x50mmR Mannlicher and used by cavalry units of the Austro-Hungarian Army as a replacement to the Mannlicher M1890 carbine. The sights were graduated from 500-2400 paces (375-1800m). It didn't have bayonet lugs.

Sniper rifle[edit]

Sniper rifle variant.

The main difference from the standard rifle and stuzten was the telescopic sight mount. The scope was mounted slightly to the left so the rifle could be fed by en bloc clip. Approximately 6,000 long and short barreled sniper rifles were made in the years 1915-1918.[5]

Conversions[edit]

The Mannlicher M95/30 conversion.

M95/30 was a conversion in the First Austrian Republic by Steyr-Mannlicher during 1930-1940. These rifles carry the letter S meaning Spitzer stamped on the barrel. Main modification was the rechambering to 8x56mmR cartridge. Other changes were the conversion of rear sights from the older pace unit to meters and addition of a brass front sight protector. Many long rifles were cut down to Stutzen length. Most of M95/30s were sent to Bulgaria during 1938-40, where front sight protectors were removed.[6]

31.M or M95/31 was a conversion done in the Kingdom of Hungary. Rifles were converted 1931-1935 by FÉG in Budapest and carry the letter H meaning Hegyes Töltény (pointed bullet) stamped on top of the chamber. The conversion included rechambering to the new 8x56mmR pointed bullet cartridge, new metric back sight and addition of a front-sight protector. Long rifles were cut down to carbine length and designated 31/a.M. They weren't used for much time and were withdrawn to storage when the new 35M rifle was introduced. Some were reissued during WW2. A small number were rechambered but weren't cut down for the Hungarian Governmental Guards, these had special long bayonets.[7]

M95M or M95/24 was a conversion to 7.92x57mm cartridge by the Kragujevac Arsenal in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. These rifles feature Yugoslavian M24 Mauser barrels, sights and handguards, are fed by 5-round stripper clips and are prone to extractor malfunction. Some of these rifles were found in the Kingdom of Greece by the German forces durng WWII and were mistakenly attributed Greek origin.[8][9]

Summary[edit]

Various Mannlicher rifles and carbines. The long rifle on far left is an 1888 model and the carbine in the middle is an 1890 model carbine. The rest are various 1895 models.
Cartridge Length Weight Sling Swivels Bayonet Lug Notes
Rifle Model 1895 8x50mmR 128.2 cm (50.5 in) 3.63 kg (8.0 lb) Under Yes
Carbine Model 1895 8x50mmR 100 cm (39 in) 2.95 kg (6.5 lb) Side No 7 inch gap between front and rear barrel bands
Stutzen Model 1895 8x50mmR 100 cm (39 in) 3.13 kg (6.9 lb) Under Yes 5 inch gap between front and rear barrel bands
Carbine Model 1895 with Stutzen lug 8x50mmR 100 cm (39 in) 3.18 kg (7.0 lb) Side Yes 7 inch gap between front and rear barrel bands
Carbine-Stutzen Model 1895 8x50mmR 100 cm (39 in) 3.22 kg (7.1 lb) Either Yes 5 inch gap between front and rear barrel bands
Stutzen-Carbine Model 1895 8x50mmR 100 cm (39 in) 3.27 kg (7.2 lb) Both Yes 7 inch gap between front and rear barrel bands
Rifle Model 1895/30 8x56mmR 128.2 cm (50.5 in) 3.63 kg (8.0 lb) Under Yes
Stutzen Model 1895/30 8x56mmR 100 cm (39 in) 3.22 kg (7.1 lb) Either Yes
Stutzen Model 1895/30 from Long Rifle 8x56mmR 100 cm (39 in) 3.22 kg (7.1 lb) Either Yes Long rifle rear sight
Rifle M95M and M95/24 7.92x57mm 110 cm (43 in) 3.86 kg (8.5 lb) Both Yes

[10]

Accessories[edit]

Bayonet[edit]

Standard Mannlicher M1895 bayonet.

There were two main variants of the bayonet. The first one was the standard bayonet (pictured on the right), the second one was a NCO variant that featured a long bent handguard and a golden lanyard. The overall length was 360 millimetres (14 in) and the blade was 248 millimetres (9.8 in) long. The bayonet was unusual in that the edge faced upwards when mounted on the rifle. Majority of them were made by Œ.W.G. and F.G.GY. Bayonets were originally not serial numbered.

Late in World War I resources were limited and they started manufacturing replacemet (German: Ersatz) bayonets. These were fast to produce, cheap and made completely out of metal.[11]

Night sights[edit]

A set of rear and front Luminous Sights M. 1916.

A number of Model 1916 night (Luminous) sights were issued during World War I.[12] The rear night sight is a small brass plate that is placed underneath the rear sight leaf. The front sight clamps around the rifle's front sight base.[13]

Users[edit]

  •  Albania: Approx. 4000 rifles were ordered by the Albanian Revolutionary Committee in 1911. Albania also received a number of rifles after First World War as war reparations.[14]
  • Flag of Austria.svg First Austrian Republic: In service from October 1918 to the Anschluss.
  •  Austria-Hungary: In service from 1895 to Dissolution of Austria-Hungary in 1918. They saw a lot of action during World War I as the primary weapon of the Austro-Hungarian Army.
  •  Kingdom of Bulgaria: Starting in 1898 Bulgaria began importing M95 Mannlicher rifles, in the beginning exclusively from Steyr and later also from Budapest . Approx. 83,000 long rifles and 2,000 carbines were imported. These can be identified by a Bulgarian lion crest stamped on chamber and the manufaturer's name on the left side of the receiver.[5]
  •  Czechoslovakia: Czechoslovakia had about 300,000 Mannlichers of all models in their possession, the M95 was the most common. The Zbrojovka Brno factory manufactured an unknown amount of M95 barrels, stocks and barrel bands before switching to Mauser series production. Most were sold to Bulgaria in the 1930s, but some remained in storage until WW2.[15]
  •  Finland: Finland obtained approximately 2300 rifles during the 1920s in the 8x50mmR Mannlicher caliber. They were marked SA and are valuable among collectors.[16]
  •  Nazi Germany: Used by German police during WW2.[17]
  •  Kingdom of Greece: Greece had a number of M95/24 and M95M rifles chambered for the 8×57mm IS and after the Axis occupation of Greece in April 1941 arrived at the disposal of the Wehrmacht under the designation Gewehr 306(g).[18]
  •  Kingdom of Hungary: After the dissolution of the dual monarchy the Hungarian part recived its share of M95s.
    Hungarian soldier with a Mannlicher 31.M in World War II.
  •  Kingdom of Italy: Captured on the Italian Front and received as war reparations.[19] M.95s in original condition were used by colonial troops in Italian East Africa, these are marked AOI for Africa Orientale Italiana. Rifles that were captured by the British were shipped to India as trainers.[20]
  •  Ottoman Empire[citation needed]
  •  Second Polish Republic:[21] Received by armed police in the 1920s.[22]
  •  Portugal[citation needed]
  •  Qing Dynasty: The elite Wuwei Troop was equipped with a significant amount of imported Mannlicher rifles.[citation needed]
  •  Francoist Spain: During the Spanish Civil War, the Soviet NKVD Agency supplied the Communist Republican Forces in Spain with 20,000 Mannlicher Wz.95 rifles and carbines purchased from the Polish Ministry of Defense. The rifle shipment did not reach the Reds, it was captured by Franco's Nationalists. Most Spanish Civil War weapons ended up on the U.S. surplus market during 1959–62. These guns may have additional Spanish Civil War markings and various graffity.[23]
  •  Kingdom of Romania: Issued to second line troops.[24]
  •  Russian Empire: During the First World War, captured rifles were widely used in the Russian army because of the lack of domestic rifles and cartridges for them.[25] Russian captured rifles may carry a Cyrillic letter П (P). Russian efforts to convert their service rifle, the turning bolt-action Mosin-Nagant to self-loading action were unsuccessful, that's why they decided to alter the straight-pull Mannlicher M1895 rifle, but arrived to the conclusion that development of automatic rifles requires a diffenrent approach by inventors.[26]
  •  Kingdom of Serbia: Captured during the Balkan Wars from Bulgaria and Austria-Hungary during WWI, also received as war reparations in original caliber. Passed on to the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.
  •  Turkey[citation needed]
  •  Kingdom of Yugoslavia: Yugoslavia inherited a great amount of Mannlicher rifles from territories that were part of Austria-Hungary up to the end of First World War and from Kindgom of Serbia. Rifles in original configuration were used by the Gendarmerie. Around 122,000 were converted to 7.92x57mm Mauser caliber as M95M and M95/24.[27]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "spanishcivilwar1". Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  2. ^ John Walter (25 March 2006). Rifles of the World. Krause Publications. p. 265. ISBN 0-89689-241-7. Retrieved 9 September 2014. 
  3. ^ "Yugoslavian Mannlicher M.95 Rifles and Carbines". Manowar's Hungarian Weapons & History. Retrieved June 22, 2012. 
  4. ^ "Bulgarian Mannlicher M.95 Rifles and Carbines". Manowar's Hungarian Weapons & History. Retrieved June 22, 2012. 
  5. ^ a b "[The Mannlicher family]". Revija Obramba (in Slovenian) 13 (12). December 2003. ISSN 0353-9628. 
  6. ^ http://www.hungariae.com/Mann9530.htm
  7. ^ http://www.hungariae.com/Mann31.htm
  8. ^ http://www.hungariae.com/Mann95Se.htm
  9. ^ http://candrsenal.com/rifle-yugoslavian-mannlicher-m95m-and-m9524/
  10. ^ http://candrsenal.com/a-quick-and-dirty-guide-mannlichers-straight-pull-rifles/
  11. ^ "Austrian Ersatz Bayonets". Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  12. ^ Ortner, Mario Christian (2006). Storm Troops. Militaria Verlag. 
  13. ^ "Mannlicher M95 Rifles and Carbines Accessories". hungariae.com. 2014. Retrieved Feb 13, 2015. 
  14. ^ "Mannlicher M.95-type Rifles and Carbines, Albania". Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  15. ^ "Czech Mannlicher M.95-type Rifles and Carbines". Retrieved 15 April 2015. 
  16. ^ "Finnish Mannlicher M.95-type Rifles and Carbines". Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  17. ^ "German Mannlicher M.95 Stutzens & Carbines". Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  18. ^ "Greek Austro-Hungarian Mannlicher M.95 Rifles and Carbines". Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  19. ^ "Mannlicher M95-type Rifles and Carbines". Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  20. ^ "Rifle: Austro-Hungarian Steyr-Mannlicher M.95". C&Rsenal. Retrieved 15 April 2015. 
  21. ^ "Karabin i karabinek 8 mm wz.1895 "Mannlicher" - Kampania Wrześniowa 1939.pl". Kampania Wrześniowa 1939. Retrieved June 5, 2012. 
  22. ^ "Mannlicher Yasnikov M.95-type Automatic Rifle Prototype". Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  23. ^ "Polish Austro Hungarian Mannlicher Rifles and Carbines". Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  24. ^ "WorldWar2.ro". Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  25. ^ А. Б. Жук. Энциклопедия стрелкового оружия: револьверы, пистолеты, винтовки, пистолеты-пулеметы, автоматы. М., АСТ — Voyenizdat, 2002, p. 587
  26. ^ "Mannlicher Yasnikov M.95-type Automatic Rifle Prototype". Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  27. ^ "Rifle: Yugoslavian Mannlicher M95M and M95/24". C&Rsenal. Retrieved June 14, 2014. 

External links[edit]