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Thread: Duffle Cut Info

  1. #1
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    Default Duffle Cut Info

    I've been busy doing research on K98's from Mike & Bruce's karabiner 98k books, as well as on this forum and others, and wanted to know a little more about "duffle cut" rifles:

    1) Why are there duffle cut rifles, but most vet bring backs are not?
    2) Where on the rifles are the typical cuts?
    3) How much does the duffle cuts reduce (or enhance?) the value of the rifle.

    Thanks in advance, and thanks again for this great forum with this wealth of knowledge.

    Ross

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    Senior Member BadAim's Avatar
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    1.) a lot of bring backs were brought back in containers that the GI’s made. There are some examples of this in Vol. III.
    2.). Most it would appear occurred under the read band which is a nice logical place. Have seen some cut mid-stock though.
    3.) I think consensus is that it detracts from the value overall but many here wouldn’t mind a properly repaired duffel cut because it really does signify a true vet bring-back vs. an early import.

  3. #3
    No War Eagles For You! mrfarb's Avatar
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    I'd say most vet bring backs are duffel cut, you just can't see the cut as it's under the rear band (if the vet cared about keeping it original looking). Some are cut in horrible places that show, that kills the value even on a rare gun.
    Order the new K98k book at www.thirdpartypress.com
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ross_badger View Post
    I've been busy doing research on K98's from Mike & Bruce's karabiner 98k books, as well as on this forum and others, and wanted to know a little more about "duffle cut" rifles:

    1) Why are there duffle cut rifles, but most vet bring backs are not?
    2) Where on the rifles are the typical cuts?
    3) How much does the duffle cuts reduce (or enhance?) the value of the rifle.

    Thanks in advance, and thanks again for this great forum with this wealth of knowledge.

    Ross
    I can only speculate on 1. But I'll give it a try. Some rifles were sent back complete, while others were cut to fit in a soldiers duffle bag to carry home. I'm really not sure of all of the logistics regarding war trophies back in the day.
    2. Duffle cuts appear in various places, some really awful ones appear in the middle of the stock, at the butt end, but the most common seems to be under the rear barrel band on the fore end of the stock.
    3. I've never really seen a duffle cut add to the value of the rifle, most collectors would rather have one that has been unmolested, but they don't seem to detract that much from the value (if it still retains all the original pieces) particularly if they are hidden under the rear band. But still generally has a dent in the value.

    Others will surely to add to this.

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    Senior Member Zeppelin5000's Avatar
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    It's all how the GI shipped/carried them home. A lot of guys found crates long enough to put a rifle in, so they went that route. Many maybe couldn't find a long enough crate, so they disassembled the rifle and cut the stock and shipped it in a smaller crate. A lot decided to carry them back on their person. I'm sure most of the guys had a standard issue duffle bag that a full length rifle would not fit into, so they had to cut them. I'd say others may have had oversized bags that would allow them to fit a whole rifle. With the different variances in what a troop had to use to bring back something like a K98, you see a lot of bring backs with different things done to them to get them across the ocean.

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    I don’t attach any additional value to a duffle cut but I do consider them the only real evidence the rifle was brought back by a vet. A tremendous number of K98’s were imported prior to the 1968 firearms act and I think a great many of those became the rifle that”Uncle Jack brought back from the war”.
    Last edited by CLG; 11-21-2019 at 11:52 AM.

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    Senior Member BadAim's Avatar
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    I’m curious now...Is any duffel cut data tracked on the board? I’d be curious to see what percentage of known K98’s and codes are duffel cut. From my limited observation, it is a small proportion of K98’s in anyone’s collection.

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    Just as an aside . . . .

    I’ve read that some of these “duffle cuts” were actually shipped home in the very heavy-duty cardboard tubes originally used for containing the 75 mm artillery shells.

    Apparently they made for ideal “mailing tubes” for these rifles!

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    Senior Member GunKraut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BadAim View Post
    I’m curious now...Is any duffel cut data tracked on the board? I’d be curious to see what percentage of known K98’s and codes are duffel cut. From my limited observation, it is a small proportion of K98’s in anyone’s collection.
    I'm specifically interested in learning what percentage of duffle cuts have matching bolts as the disassembled rifles were obviously not visible to Navy personnel upon boarding the ship home to the U.S., hence no bolts should have been separated from the rifles.

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    Senior Member Zeppelin5000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GunKraut View Post
    I'm specifically interested in learning what percentage of duffle cuts have matching bolts as the disassembled rifles were obviously not visible to Navy personnel upon boarding the ship home to the U.S., hence no bolts should have been separated from the rifles.
    I'd like to hear the stories from the guys that actually brought these weapons back. Sadly, those guys are few and far between now...

    When Navy personnel would say, "if you have a war trophy rifle in your possession, turn in the bolt", you've always got the guys who follow the rules, then you've got the guys who say to themselves, "yeah, I'm not doing that"... and go about their way lol.

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