Here's a neat rifle I picked up recently. It's a Semi Kriegsmodell Gustloff-made k98k. The receiver date is '44 but with the 5-digit serial, this gun likely wasn't finished and issued until early '45. As the war pressed on, the Germans started taking shortcuts in their k98k production methods in order to increase output. What makes this one a Semikriegs, opposed to a full out Kriegsmodell, is the exclusion of the bolt takedown ring in the butt. Instead, a small hole was drilled into the butt plate to be used for bolt disassembly. It does have a bayonet lug and cleaning rod provision, so it doesn't fit into the Kriegsmodell category.
What drew me to this beast of a Mauser was the crude stock "chatter". Its rough, ribbed, and undulating contours are indicative of the panicked state of affairs for Germany in late '44/45. Here are two decent pics of the chatter, also the eagle/H army acceptance stamp:
Gustloff Werke wasn't so much a manufacturer of K98ks as they were an assembler of parts. Many subcontracted parts can be found on this gun, typical of any wartime Gustloff Mauser. The barrel (code AVK) was made by Ruhrstahl. The receiver (code 1) was made by Astrawerke. The mag plate (code QNW), bolt shroud (gnn) and even the stock itself (C) show the marks of other businesses.
When I first picked this rifle up it was obviously heavier than any other k98k I've handled. I wasn't aware of it at the time, but Gustloff by 1944 was known to use oversized stocks. I'm not sure if this was a strengthening measure, or just a shortcut in wood finishing. But take another look at this pic, you can see how the heel bulges outward beyond the butt plate, much wider than your standard early- or midwar Mauser.
This rifle is 100% matching, but by this point in production, serialization of parts was mostly abolished. Where, let's say a 1938 gun would have numbered screws, cleaning rod, bands, bolt and all bolt parts, bolt stop, mag plate, follower, stock heel, rear and front sights, a late '44 BCD will only have its bolt and stock numbered.
Overall this is a pretty sexy example of the Semikriegsmodell, showing the late war, last ditch, Hail Mary methods of breakneck production in order to continue fighting an already lost war. The best part is it's 100% undicked and original, with an original L&F marked sling and sight hood to complete the outfit. The stamped/welded parts, the rough stock chatter, and semikriegs features comprise its late war charm & make it a definite & permanent keeper in the collection. Enjoy the rest of the pics.