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Thread: Useful excerpts about soldiers disassembling K98k's, Waffenmeisters & field reworks

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    No War Eagles For You! mrfarb's Avatar
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    Default Useful excerpts about soldiers disassembling K98k's, Waffenmeisters & field reworks

    The following are excerpts from a recent thread on Gunboards that was deleted, some names changed. These facts are from our own member 8x57IS, and are useful postings:

    (random member)In all my research I have never found a "regulation" that forbad German soldiers to dismantle the 98 Mauser, so I suspect you made that one up. Just like you have made up the rest of your nonsense. You have no real experience with "water" if you think a bit of grease can keep it out. Water will soak into wood from every surface. Grow up! You age and lack of experience is showing badly.(random member)In all my research I have never found a "regulation" that forbad German soldiers to dismantle the 98 Mauser, so I suspect you made that one up. Just like you have made up the rest of your nonsense. You have no real experience with "water" if you think a bit of grease can keep it out. Water will soak into wood from every surface. Grow up! You age and lack of experience is showing badly.
    Beside H. Dv. 257 you can find it here:
    Marine Dienstvorschrift Nummer 257 "Schußwaffen 98." (M. Dv. Nr. 257)
    Luftwaffe Dienstvorschrift 257 "Schußwaffen 98." (L. Dv. 257)

    In addition you find it in:
    "Das Gewehr 98. Mit Reinigungsgerät 34 u. Seitengewehr, Berlin" Heinz Denckler-Verlag from 1942.

    (Practical Application):

    You and your 11 comrades come back from the patrol and you take your rifles totally apart to dry the wet parts? Your officer wouldn't be amused, he would remind you about H. Dv. 257:
    "The soldier may take the rifle apart only to the extent necessary. He may remove and disassemble the bolt, floorplate with follower, cleaning rod, muzzle cover and sling.Any further disassembly of the rifle is prohibited for the soldiers and may only be carried out by the armorer or armorer-helper."
    He would certainly mention again H. Dv. 257 and ask:
    "Do you know the difference between the cleaning rules "Gewöhnliche Reinigung", "Hauptreinigung" and "Außerordentliche Reinigung"?"

    I think you should prove your theory with a photo which shows some German soldiers with their rifles and the removed stocks and handguards. You can? You should better do this, especially since you treat helpful members very rude.

    (random member), Do you know the difference between these official cleaning rules? If you would read the "H. Dv. 257", "M. Dv. Nr. 257", "L. Dv. 257" or "Das Gewehr 98. Mit Reinigungsgerät 34 u. Seitengewehr, Berlin", you would know why the officer wouldn't be amused when you take your rifles totally apart to dry the wet parts. In such a situation the "Hauptreinigung" is required, nothing more. In these orders you can also read you don't take a wet rifle totally apart, there they describe how you protect your weapon against water.
    You should also read the "Heeres Verordnungsblatt" and "Allgemeine Heeresmitteilungen", in particular the orders "Ausbildung und Prüfung von Waffenunteroffizieren" and "Kriegslehrgang für Unteroffiziere im Waffenmeisterdienst an der Heereswaffenmeisterschule". Another interesting read is the German Army High Command order "637. Instandsetzung von Handfeuerwaffen in Feldwerkstätten" from May 1940 by O.K.H. (Ch H Rüst u. BdE) - 72 - AHA In 2 (VII).

    Back to your story: If they are so close to the front and they can expect a nasty surprise of the Ivan they wouldn't disassembly the rifles, the soldiers would just field strip them for cleaning. If the situation would allow it, they could make a "Außerordentliche Reinigung", but for everything exist a order. The Waffenmeister and Waffenmeistergehilfe are allowed to make a "Außerordentliche Reinigung" and not the normal soldiers. But they wouldn't do it in a situation how you describe it.

    It makes no sense to argue with you and to quote original sources, because you are always right. You bring always up a new half-truth statement and you have a talent to twist the word in the mouth of helpful members.
    Originally Posted by (random member) - My present interest for the last 10 years or so are Waffenmeister tools, gauges and so forth and how they were used in weapon repair.
    You write again and again "klein werkzeugkasten", the correct name is: "Kleiner Waffenmeisterwerkzeugkasten" You can and as a self-appointed expert you should read more about it in "Allgemeine Heeresmitteilungen 1935, Book 14, No. 274".

    Originally Posted by (random member), you need to set back a take a good look at what you have posted because you do not understand it. It clearly says that that "Any further disassembly of the rifle is prohibited for the soldiers and may only be carried out by the armorer or armorer-helper." In other words o ignorant one, if the company "armorer" or Waffenmeister NCO decides to make one good 98k out of two bad ones, he can take the screwdriver out of his klein werkzeugkasten and take them apart and switch parts around until he has a functional weapon without any regard for matching numbers. It also says that a "armorer-helper", and being a NCO, he can order a enlisted man, to be an "armorer-helper", to do the work under his supervision. After all, all he is doing is changing parts. THANKS FOR PROVING MY POINT!
    A: A Waffenmeistergehilfe (armorer-helper) isn't a simple helper, Waffenmeistergehilfe is a official position!
    B: The NCO im Waffenmeisterdienst can not decide this on its own, it's not that easy, the commanding officer has to decide that. You should read a bit in the “Vorgesetztenverordnung”.

    Originally Posted by (random member) - Following instructions to clean/inspect the major components of the 98k. In the original German the relevant passage reads: "Jedes weitere Zerlegen des Gewehrs ist fuer die Mannschaft verboten und darf nur durch den Waffenmeister order dessen Gehilfen ausgefuehrt warden." Which translates to: "Each time the rifle taken apart it is forbidden for enlisted personnel (further disassembly) only through direction of the Waffenmeister or his helpers." Just like the Army, IF someone in authority gives the order, you had better do it!
    The translation isn't correct, member Gunkraut mentioned it already. The meaning, at least what you construct out of it, is similar. The important part is: The NCO can't order you to be a Waffenmeistergehilfe, because it's a official position and for the persons who should make this job, special demands are made.

    You should read about the special demands in “Heeres Verordnungsblatt 1939, Section B, Book 9, No. 173”, the title of No. 173 is “Waffenmeistergehilfen” Another important part is “Heeres Verordnungsblatt 1939, Section C, Book 18, No. 584” with the same title “ Waffenmeistergehilfen”.

    Originally Posted by (random member) - In this parable, real life German soldiers would have been told to totally dismantle and thoroughly clean and dry their weapons because that is only way to prevent RUST damage.

    YOU say, that is the only way to prevent rust, but the Wehrmacht has decided that the rust prevention happens in a different way and that way was certainly successful enough for them. If I would swim with my K98k in peacetime through the Volga river, I would also prefer to totally dismantle the rifle to clean it, dry it and oil it. But MY and YOUR opinion are totally irrelevant. I told you already, you should read the "H. Dv. 257", "M. Dv. Nr. 257", "L. Dv. 257".
    I asked you already but I got no answer and therefore I ask you again - Do you know the difference between "Gewöhnliche Reinigung", "Hauptreinigung" and "Außerordentliche Reinigung"?
    In such a situation the "Hauptreinigung" is required, nothing more. In these orders you can also read you don't take a wet rifle totally apart, there they describe how you protect your weapon against water. They preventive spread the Unfleiß to prevent rust on areas which you can't reach. They even write in detail how you spread the Unfleiß and how not. They did it with the Waffenfett TL 6006, you should check out the order “Oberkommando des Heeres (Ch H Rüst u. BdE), January 26, 1942 - 2197 /42 g – AHA /1 b (I).”.

    Originally Posted by (random member) - Go back and read that again! My translation is worded slightly different than yours but they both basically mean the same thing: If in your words "enlisted personnel is not permitted and only allowed to be performed by the armourer or his helpers."
    What you forget is that ANY German soldier can be a "helper" if ordered to do so. You see the words but do not understand them.
    Wrong, you just have to look in the sources which I mentioned above.

    Originally Posted by (random member) - At least Gunkraut gave it a try, but both of our translations amounted to the same thing and reinforced that the Waffenmeister could order a "helper" to do whatever needed.
    Not at all, you just have to look in the sources which I mentioned above.

    Originally Posted by (random member) - Now back to the "armorer, armorer-helper". Remember, I said "each unit large enough to be issued two machineguns" had a armorer (Waffenmeister) NCO, "one" man? But he is authorized to have "helper". So if he needs "help" he will grab however many enlisted men he needs, because he is a "Non-Commissioned Officer" and put them at work under his supervision. See? Said the Blind Man, an enlisted can take his 98k completely apart, IF the Waffenmeister orders him to. Why else would there be all that info in the books showing all the parts and how to do it? Comprende?
    Please, please look at the sources which I mentioned above.

    Originally Posted by (random member) - Thanks for correcting my mistake concerning the metal lined hole in the stock. I do make an occasional mistake. I know very well were it is located and what it is for. The Waffenmeister NCO tool case or "klein Waffenwerkzeugkasten" was issued with 35 tools and gauges. If you would like to see one just do a web search or get on youtube. NO, no number stamps were used at company level. Once a year, all weapons were inspected and "rebuilt to new" at depot level. Miss matched parts were re-numbered and re-blued then. Actually, the people who criticize me are the ones I have proven wrong in the past and I will prove them wrong again in this thread. I think they have become addicted to factual punishment.
    Please look at “H.Dv. 254 Pistole 38”, there is a answer and I have to disappoint you, it proves you are wrong with “no number stamps were used at company level”.
    What you describe in the second part which is red marked, these (at least partly) things was made direct in the units and it's called "Außerordentliche Reinigung". You should read about it in “O.K.H. (Ch H Rüst u. BdE), January 7, 1941. 72 a/n -AHA/Jn 2 (VII)”.


    By the way, I'm not a expert. I'm just a German who served in the German Army, as armorer-helper.

    The following, supplied by 8x57IS, were used in the book and are particularly interesting for this thread:

    Army Decree-Sheet (Heeres Verordnungsblatt)
    Published by the Army High Command
    22nd year Berlin, June 5, 1940 Section C - Sheet 16
    -217-
    637. Small arms repair in field workshops
    The field workshops don't have sight-adjustment-devices, no pressure-test-units and
    no pressure-test-ammunition to make the proof fire testing, zero in and the
    practicability ttesting. To adjust new barrels in small arms, the testing of the weapons
    are absolutely necessary to guarantee the safety of the shooters.
    In the field workshops it's therefore forbidden
    1. to adjust new barrels in small arms and
    2. to assemble new small arms from captured inventory.
    O.K.H. (Ch H Rüst u. BdE), May 23, 1940
    ---- 72 ---- AHA / In 2 (VII).
    65. Extraordinary cleaning, renovation of the finishes
    and zero in of the small arms and machine guns at the troops in winter 1940/41.
    1. The Extraordinary cleaning can be carried out on sidearms, small arms and machine guns which are
    owned by the troops for more than half a year, if the march-standby of the troops allow it.
    2. On weapons where the finishes are worn, the renovation may be carried out by the hot dip bluing
    process, using analogously the regulation of H. Dv. 376.
    In order to carry out the work, the troops have to build makeshift hot dip bluing equipment.
    Existing suitable containers can be used. For hot dip bluing only welded tin-free steel containers
    are suitable, which can be put into operation on open fire. Brick-built ovens shouldn’t be
    produced. It is explicit pointed out that soft-soldered, hard-soldered, tin-plated, galvanized and
    copper containers are not suitable for hot dip bluing.
    The required degreasing agent, the bluing salt and the
    temperature gauge are to be obtained on the free market.
    The bluing salt and the temperature gauge can be obtained from the following companies:
    a) Dr. Uecker, Köln-Nippes, Meerheimerstr. 312, b) Goerig, Mannheim, Hafenstr. 25,
    c) Alexandrinen-Apotheke, Berlin SW 68, Alexandrinenstr.112,
    d) R. Schüler, Leipzig, Kochstr. 124,
    e) Emil Otto, Magdeburg, Spielgartenstr. 33.
    Machine gun oil for the oil bath has to be obtained for the Ersatzheer (Replacement Army) from the responsible Heereszeugamt, for the Feldheer (Field Army)
    from the responsible Infanteriepark (infantry equipment park).
    Care must be taken to ensure that the work is carried out quickly and unobstructed, in particular
    degreasing agent and bluing salt must be ensured before starting work.
    When carry the work out, the regulation of H. Dv. 376 page 9 section C “safety precautions” and
    page 12 marginal cipher 29 “prevention of accidents” must be followed strictly. If the opportunity
    is given, protective clothing must be obtained in accordance with marginal cipher 6 of the same
    regulation.
    The costs are to be booked in chapter VIII E 230.
    3. The zero in of the small arms and machine guns has to be done, if necessary on makeshift
    arranged shooting ranges, according to regulation H. Dv. 242 in compliance with the given safety
    regulations.
    O.K.H. (Ch H Rüst u. BdE), January 7, 1941
    72 a/n ---- AHA/Jn 2 (VII).
    217. Schußwaffen 98 stock repair
    1. Worn butts are to be repaired by the unit armorer
    according to the instructions– Drawing No. 01 B 3076 - in
    “Manual to repair worn butts on Schußwaffen 98”.
    The milling cutter – 3 IV 1808 - required for repair
    has to be manufactured by the armorer.
    A shortening or narrowing of the buttplate with a file,
    as it was prescribed in H. Dv. 172 page 49 cipher 45 b, is
    no longer permissible.
    Costs arising are to be covered from self-operatingfunds
    for weapons and equipment.
    Drawings are to be requested by Heereszeichnungenverwaltung
    (Army-Drawing-Administration) Berlin
    C 2, Klosterstr. 64 if necessary.
    2. Stocks, which for several years in succession go
    back into the old crooked position in spite of straightening,
    and cause a changed point of impact, are to be segregated
    in the armorer-workshops, a collection of bad-shooter-shot
    pattern has to be created to determine these errors.
    3. In H. Dv. 172 from April 28, 1910, page 49 cipher
    45 paragraph b, the saying below picture 1 has to be
    deleted and you have to write there “Remedy has to be
    done according to instructions in Army Decree-Sheet 1939
    section B page 147 No. 217.”
    Cover sheets are not issued. Instruction is in revision.
    O.K.H., May 16, 1939
    ---- 72 b ---- In 2 (VII).
    509. Armorer tools
    In the supporting documents of the appropriate armorer tools for infantry weapons, H. Dv. 474
    Classification of Equipment 34, the following tools get recorded:
    1. Pliers to attach the extractor and the extractor collar (Schußwaffe 98) Drawing 34 D 118 17.
    2. Tool to remove the extractor and to insert and take out the bolt sleeve stop
    (Schußwaffe 98) Drawing 34 D 11 818.
    3. Mandrel for the repair of dented upper bands to Schußwaffe 98
    Drawing 34 D 11 819.
    4. Mandrel for the repair of dented lower bands to Schußwaffe 98
    Drawing 34 D 11 820.
    5. Gadget to remove and insert the floorplate latch in the triggerguard of
    Schußwaffe 98 Drawing 34 C 11 821.
    The tools are to be manufactured in the troop armorer-workshops themselves. The resulting costs for
    material are to be paid from s-funds (special funds) of the troops.
    Drawings are to be requested by Heereszeichnungenverwaltung (Army- Drawing- Administration)
    Berlin C 2, Klosterstr. 64 if necessary.
    Cover sheet output follows.
    O.K.H., May 16, 1939
    ---- 77 d ---- In 2 (VII).
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    No War Eagles For You! mrfarb's Avatar
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    These are useful points backed by an actual German armorers helper, followed by actual citations of the manuals/verordnungsblatt. Reserved for future additions as needed.

    Edit: and here he is, the unit Waffenmeister for Feld Werkstatt 533
    Attached Images Attached Images
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    RKI- Reasonably Knowledgable Individual heavy_mech's Avatar
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    "By the way, I'm not a expert. I'm just a German who served in the German Army, as armorer-helper." as well as a plethora of official documents and an excellent grasp of the written German language is certainly trumped by the claim to be Eleanor Roosevelt's half brother or having read a book on German machine guns.
    "Wen Tausend einen Mann erschlagen, das ist nicht Ruhm, das ist nicht Ehre, denn beinsen wird's in späteren tagen gesiegt hat doch das Deutsch Heer. Podest nicht die Paten der Soldaten doner die da Sterben sollen, soll man geben was sie wollen, sahs sie Herzen, sahs sie Küssen, den sie wissen nicht wann sie sterben müssen"

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    Senior Member Pat's Avatar
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    Excellent collection of info Mike, thanks for recovering/posting it here
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    No War Eagles For You! mrfarb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pat View Post
    Excellent collection of info Mike, thanks for recovering/posting it here
    One of the perks of being a moderator. Pic Sticky.
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    ax - hole Warrior1354's Avatar
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    Yes 8x57 can now drop the mic talk about being schooled!

    Great info from him as well.
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    Major Robert Rogers 1757 Founder of the U.S Army Rangers

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    Community Organizer Hambone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrfarb View Post
    The following are excerpts from a recent thread on Gunboards that was deleted, some names changed. These facts are from our own member 8x57IS, and are useful postings:
    Thanks for reviving that info Farb and many thanks, as always, to 8x57IS for his excellent and substantive contributions. After that it was game over.
    “Not every item of news should be published. Rather must those who control news policies endeavor to make every item of news serve a certain purpose.” - Dr. Joseph Goebbels, Reich Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda, 1933-1945

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    More great information from farb as usual. I just wonder how rigidly these standards were followed, I assume very rigidly knowing the Germans, but what actually happened in a crunch like Stalingrad? They were isolated. They wore shoes made of straw. I bet that was not according to the book either, and very sad too.

    All armies have SOPs(standard operating procedures and field manuals to insure that the rules were clear) but I sure saw a lot of ignoring the SOP when it suited those in control and/or the situation in my time and I was not in combat. The documents we had forbid much of what we did, as it did for the Son Tai Raiders, many of these heros I knew, but it happened. The ones in charge would just deny it and/or ignore it. Worse still, they would order you to do it against SOP. I just wonder if the Germans followed the rules in a rigid manner regardless of situation. It is contrary to common sense and my experience. especially when survival was involved, that everybody follow the letter of the strict field manual or directive. If it were me and my rifle needed a handguard, or a bolt, I would fix it if the situation dictated and if I got demoted or court marshalled, no big problem vs death. Do documented directives/SOPs prove the way things were done or just the way they were supposed to be done at risk of your butt if the wrong brass got wind of it?

    We were required to hand carry our weapons to the depot transported in a military vehicle, no private vehicle could be used. We never did that. We took turns doing it in our vehicles. I had a 69 Camaro full of M-16s, M-60s, etc. and I knew it was strongly against regulations. A Sargent Major E-9 told me to do it and I did it. I was quite uncomfortable and they were in clear view packed in the back seat and floor.

    It is my understanding German regulations required pistols be disassembled, cleaned and oiled every day. From the ones I have seen and many I own, there is no way that happened. They would show much more wear.

    Not attempting to argue with an expert I respect, just wondering how we know the letter of the rules was followed in all circumstances.

    That said, any rifle or firearm that does not follow the normal pattern should be assumed incorrect.

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    No War Eagles For You! mrfarb's Avatar
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    An interesting thing about #65 from the Heeres Verordnungsblatt about "extraordinary cleaning" after the winter of 40/41. This entry names a specific event which caused much wear and tear on small arms, enough to warrant special cleaning/refurbishing due to wear, especially blue wear. But, if you didn't catch this point, the decree lays out where to buy supplies for the unit Waffenmeister to obtain bluing salts to refinish the rifles. That is it - this seems to indicate, at least up until 1941/42, unit armorers did not have materials to refinish weapons on hand. Refinishing was done by the depots further up the chain of repair.

    As Mike Radford pointed out though, surely there were plenty of instances where rules were not strictly followed in special situations, but these were probably the exception rather than the norm. While you guys didn't adhere to the rules, I feel like the Germans were not as flippant about disregarding policy. I am not German, but some of the paperwork I've seen from factories is so detailed and insane so as not to make any sense at all in spending time documenting it. I think they did indeed follow the rules to the bitter end in most cases - of course you bring up Stalingrad - there is no way those guys cared a whits end about rules of the German Army in that situation, so again you make a special exemption. But your final comment really sums it up for collectors - "That said, any rifle or firearm that does not follow the normal pattern should be assumed incorrect. "
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    Potential Future Early War Armchair Internet Expert sheepdog's Avatar
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    I can assure you from the few things I got out of my father, the rules and regulations were strictly adhered to in camp or away from the front lines. It was at the front lines where the German soldier pretty much threw the rules out the window, much like any other fighting force. If you needed a bolt or a part to keep you alive you did what you had to.

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