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    Really Senior Member amadeus76's Avatar
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    Mauser Stock Wood Question...

    So Iím looking at a couple different Swedishicon Mauserís that all have different wood types for the stocks. The nicest looking one is Elm but having never handled an Elm stocked rifle Iím lost on the quality... Is Elm a good wood for gun stocks? Is there any reason to avoid it in comparison to other wood types such as walnut?

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    Contributing Member AGB-1's Avatar
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    Last edited by AGB-1; 10-20-2019 at 01:03 PM.

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    The military wouldn't use 'bad' wood for stocks. However, it follows that some types of wood are better for rifle stocks but all were good, depending on supply. Pick the prettiest one.


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    Don't know if this is accurate, but from looking at Mauser stocks on various contract '98 rifles, it might be. IIRC, the idea posted was that the Germanicon military considered figured walnut as a defect that potentially weakened the stock which made it more likely to break in rough use (combat). The K98s I've had were either plain grain, straight walnut or laminated while a number of South American contract rifles from DWM, Mauser Oberndorf and CZ that I have seen and/or owned had a good bit of fiddleback grain - one was a 1909 Argentineicon Infantry rifle that had tight fiddleback running the full length of the stock, on both sides of the stock....and was broken in two at the wrist. Whoever first posited this idea suggested that the figured stocks were culls, and went onto other countries rifles. I agree that no military would intentionally select bad wood for a stock, but final say so on exports would depend on both contract specifications and the customer's inspectors.

    BTW, historically, the Scandinavians were very much accuracy conscious and I doubt they'd accept any stock which wasn't strong and stable. Not a lot of walnut grows in the far north, so if they used native woods, it would most likely be beech.

    All the best - Dave
    Last edited by DB404; 05-22-2020 at 12:11 PM. Reason: gramar

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    Senior Member Jim's Avatar
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    elm stocks

    For examples of elm stocks, just look over Yugoslavian M48 Mauser rifles. Their first choice for rifle stocks was walnut which is what the used on their pre-WWII rifles. But post war, walnut became hard and expensive to acquire so they tried others. Elm seems to have made up the bulk of them (some say "Carpathian elm" but I don't have any positive info in that detail) It tends to looking reddish like. How it's cut can make drastic changes in how it looks. Straight grained it can bear a very strong resemblance to red oak. The difference will show in cross grain cuts (like the butt stock bottom). Elm will not have the cross grain 'rays' so typical of oak.
    Here is an example of one of mine. For a wide range of variations, just google image Yugoslavian M48 Mauser rifles.
    Another thought occurs. They continued with elm onto their sks rifles too!



    Some have Walnut stocks like my M48B below but these are not so common. The bulk of what you see will be elm.
    Anyway, I hope this helps you some.

    Last edited by Jim; 06-02-2020 at 08:50 AM. Reason: addition

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    Senior Member Jim's Avatar
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    Elm stocks II

    It turned out I didn't have a picture of my Sks for the above reply. So I shot a couple. This is a Yugoslav M59 sks. It has a quarter sawn elm stock. I know the post is in reference to Mauser rifles. I'm just using this to show how this wood cut this way appears, something I did not have in a Mauser. I know this ole rifle looks to have been rode hard and put out wet but, it will serve thee purpose. Shoots pretty well too.


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