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Evolution of the 1893 model, the 1903 model has the advantages of the famous German model, the Mauser G98.
The last to arm the Ottoman infantry. All the advances brought by the famous Mauser 1898 were integrated into the 1903.
Namely: case and breech of the 98, very robust and reliable even in the most extreme areas of the Ottoman Empire at that time.

The butt, on the other hand, will remain very close to the last two models. This in order to be able to interchange the bayonets between the different rifles. Unlike the 98 model, the butt of the 1903 does not have a disc, the handguard integrates the entire rear sight to be fixed on the front of the case in a housing. Also, the karabiner 98 rear sight will be adopted instead of the gewehr 98 snail rear sight.
The stock is very different from that of a G98 but rather resembles that of a Swedish mauser 96.

Regulatory marking with:

Tugrah (seal of Sultan Abdülhamid II)

"BN Year 1322" (Hijri) i.e. 1904 Gregorian

"Oberndorfda Mavzer silah fabrikasi": "Mauser arms factory in Oberndorf"
As well as the serial number

These markings will later be erased by the Republican arsenals by grinding the surface in order to affix the inscription of the standard "38". See 1903/38


The karabiner type sight is a step forward compared to the future choices of the German army with the adoption of the 98K model and the abandonment of the snail sight.

Here the increase is in Arabic numerals because the republican reform with the Latin characters will come much later. The rise is in meters (marked at the top: mitra). below, the side markings. Unlike previous models, the sight of the 1903 is adjusted by pushing the sight slider which follows a curve modeled on the ballistics of the 7.65x53.

Noix de culasse 1903.jpg

Type 98 cylinder head for 1903 box (a little shorter than a 98, therefore non-interchangeable models). Argentine type lever ball.

Different markings: crescent on the bolt lever ball, serial number on the base.

The striker nut and the flag include the last two digits of the serial number as on the G98.

The breech ejector has the same design as the Argentinian Mausers which have the particularity of firing the same 7.65 cartridge. It rises on the loader blade guide. It is marked with a crescent and a star.

Boitier 1903.jpg

Legendary type 98 case, known for its resistance to pressure and its reliability in the field. The thunder is 4mm longer than a standard 98. The breech, shorter than the standard Mauser 98 is not interchangeable with other German rifles.

For the sake of standardization and certainly also of gunsmith and military logistics, these large ring boxes will be threaded to receive a small ring barrel in order to have a single batch of spare barrels firing the same cartridge and which can be mounted on the models. 1890, 1893 and our 1903. The original finish is war black bronzed.

The proof marks are present on the barrel on the lower part, hidden by the butt. The correspondence of these markings are appended to the 1887 model.

The handguard envelops the rear sight and offers a better grip than on a 98. It also provides perhaps better protection for the user's hands in the event of sustained fire...

As said before many of these 1903 models were re-armored by the Republicans. The marking on the thunder will be systematically erased to affix the inscription ASFA ANKARA (factory which will take care of the new compliance). These re-armored rifles will also change caliber to the legendary 7.92x57 (8x57IS) which, at the time, was jealously reserved for the German army.

(1) Targets 124, 125 1980.

(2) Mauser Military Rifle of the world fifth Ed Robert WD Ball



Customization widespread on this model: the handle is often reinforced with copper wire in order to solidify the assembly which has the bad reputation of cracking. This part will sometimes be reinforced with a steel axis crossing the stock horizontally in the "38" modification.

The graduations of the elevation cursor are modified in order to correspond to the ballistics of the new cartridge of 7.65 X 53 with an ogival projectile.

Only the rear plate will be replaced. The rear sight support will keep its side markings which will be obsolete. You may notice that the graduations are offset between the two models. This one has a graduation of 2000m much lower than the other model. This is because of the more tense trajectory of the pointed bullet cartridge.


Photographed in the Istanbul Military Museum, A rifle modified to measure the pressure developed by the various cartridges. A take  hole in the barrel at the level of the chamber corresponds with the cylinder fixed to the side of the barrel, the pressure of the gases retained by a spring placed in the tube moves a cursor under the tube, the pressure is then visible on a graduated scale engraved in front of the cursor.


A model 1903 captured by the British in the spring of 1915 and resold to the Belgians in 1917. A specific bayonet lug was added after the front sight to accommodate a Belgian model 16 bayonet.


On this same captured model, the rise has been milled to replace the inscriptions in Arabic numerals with Western numerals. Note the presence in the upper part of the preserved inscription "mitra" (meters in Osmanli) and the particular typography of Western numerals not to be confused with the standard 38 Turkish boards.

Syrie 1916.jpg

Ottoman soldiers in cover somewhere in Syria in 1915/16.


Production report of 1903 models and cartridges by month for the year 1904 by the Mauser factory

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