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  1. #1
    Really Senior Member Aragorn243's Avatar
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    88 Turkish Commission Rifle

    What ammo is safe for an 88 Turkishicon Commission rifle "S" stamped 05 conversion?



    I've read that commercial US ammo is safe but to avoid European ammo. Does this include Privi ammo? Or is it loaded to US standards for the US market?

    I've also read that the Turkish rifles may be able to shoot surplus but I'm not really considering that. Just looking for information on them.
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    Really Senior Member Aragorn243's Avatar
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    Rifle arrived yesterday. It is an 1890 CE WG STEYR which saw Turkishicon service. All major parts match although two numbers were force matched at the arsenal. A lot of the smaller parts match also. The Bolt is a Turkish replacement and is not numbered. Shroud has a couple small dents in it. Rifle is relatively rust free but has two areas with deep pitting which is unusual as there is no pitting anywhere else. These are right by the GEW 88 stamp and in front of the sling hole on the magazine housing. The receiver was not blued by the Turks but has browned a bit. It is "S" stamped on the receiver. Enclosed are some of the barrel markings, etc. It looks like a Germanicon barrel so may not be a Turk replacement and thus may be the smaller diameter. Unless you guys can tell me otherwise, I'll have to slug it.












    Overall, I'm really pleased with it. The stock is dirty and dinged but not bad. The original German cartouches are there but have been sanded down so they are not clear. It is missing it's dust cover which I'd like to replace. It's been modified so it does not need the clips. Bore isn't new but it is rust free, fairly bright and with strong rifling. I'll get full photos posted soon.

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    Really Senior Member Aragorn243's Avatar
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    Here's some photos of the full rifle.





















    From reading up on these, I got Scarlats's book, This rifle probably saw service with the Germanicon Army before being transferred to Turkey. After WWI, the Britishicon evidently took the bolts from the rifles to "demil" them and in the 1920's new bolts were ordered from Steyr to replace the originals thus the Turkishicon markings. Many were rebuilt at the same time and re-blued but this one seems to have escaped the re-bluing as the receiver and barrel are still in the white. The bolt handle appears to be a darker blue than the rest of the bolt but I can't tell if it only was blued or it simply "browned" more than the rest. Butt plate has lots of "information" on it but I can't interpret it. Unit's probably.

    I have a repro sling from Liberty Tree coming but can't locate a dust cover. If anyone has a spare they don't need, drop me a line. Other than that, it all appears to be here and in pretty good condtion.

    Of course none of my Turkish bayonets fit it either so that quest begins.

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    Senior Member mtoms's Avatar
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    I have the sister rifle 88/05 steyr 1890 I picked up a year ago at a yard sale for $125. Took me till recently to acquire an ersatz Germanicon 1916 bayo - cost half of what the rifle did.

    I feed mine 170 gr Speer .321 bullets intended for Winchester 32 special powered by 42 gr 4064. Nice mild and accurate load.

    Mine also had the original barrel but a cz replacement bolt

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    Really Senior Member Midmichigun's Avatar
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    Aragorn,
    You have a fine rifle there! One of the better condition ones that I have seen!!
    I would suggest that you slug the bore, regardless. As the S conversion (IIRC) was a modification of the throat. I would not be afraid to shoot it, but I would keep the load light.

    I used to extensively post on the Gew88.com before it went defunct.

    IIRC a lot of the guys said that they shot commercial and milsurp ammo out of the smaller bores, but I think you are "asking for it" if you do.

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    Really Senior Member Aragorn243's Avatar
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    Slugging it is. I'm in no rush on shooting this. I have plenty of others for that. Bayonet hunt yesterday was a bust. 4 major antique shows and found one at the last which had the split ring AND the reach catch cut off. This was at the end of the last show that I found that. No way to repair it, they cut up the rear slide area also. Mystery what they hoped to accomplish. They ended up with a butchered up handle.

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    Really Senior Member Calif-Steve's Avatar
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    As best as I understand this, the Germans neck reamed the chambers of their rifles and stamped them "S". Nothing else, chamber then is a .323 size and bore around .318-.320. They did not re-rifle the bores to open them up to .323 size. Most of the Gew88's went to the Reserves and then Depots as Gew98's went into service. Then many went off to Turkeyicon. American 8mm ammo works all day long. Most of the European stuff is rather stiff and not really best for the Gew88's. This whole topic can lead to nasty exchanges, but this is as I understand this issue.

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    Really Senior Member Aragorn243's Avatar
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    Sling from Liberty came today. Looks good but looks "new" also. Only regret with it is I can't use the original attachment swivel as they use a sewed end.

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