Austro-Hungarian Mannlicher Carbines

Mannlicher Model 1890/30 Stutzen Rifle and Carbine

Originally 105,000 M1890 Carbines and Stutzens were made combined, by Österreichische Waffenfabriks-Gesellschaft, Steyr, 1891-96 in caliber 8x50Rmm
Original muzzle velocity was 545 m/sec with M1888 ball cartridge
Modified by Österreichische Waffenfabriks-Gesellschaft, Steyr, 1930-1940)
Caliber: 8x56mm rimmed. New Muzzle Velocity 720 m/sec with M30 ball cartridge
Integral clip-loaded box magazine, 5 rounds
Action: Straight-pull bolt action, with two lugs on a detachable bolt head engaging the receiver
Stutzen 1003mm [39.5"] overall, 3.40kg [7.5 lbs] 500mm [19.7"] barrel, 4-groove rifling, RH, concentric

In 1930 the Austrian Army adopted a rimmed 8x56mm cartridge to replace the old Austro-Hungarian 8x50mm design. The new round, known as the M.30 in Austria, was initially used in modified M1890 (and M1895-type) Mannlichers. These were essentially similar to the original Austro-Hungarian patterns, but were re-barreled or re-chambered for the 8x56 cartridge and had new back sights installed.

The original M90 'OEWG' markings and the two-headed Austrian Eagle stamp was retained. The barrel shown here is Wn 36 (1936) stamped indicating the modification/acceptance date. The date was overstamped in 1940 with '40' indicating a re-issue.

The M30 cartridge was a large-rim with a pointed bullet (Spitzgeschoss). A 8-12mm (or so) high letter 'S' was stamped on the barrel shanks of the converted weapons to differentiate this new ammo from the older Round Nose 8x50R. These converted guns are called M95/34 incorrectly by a U.S. importer. There was no such designation neither in Hungary nor in Austria.

A few Austrian conversions appears to have an addition of a new front-sight protector.

Some of the M.90's retained their original quadrant rear sights after conversion to 8x56r 'S' cartridge. The original M90 quadrant sights graduation to 500-1800 schritt (pace, .75 meters) were replaced with new metric 600-2200m graduation, which also reflected the effect of the new M.30 cartridge.

The 8x56R cartridge was adopted by Austria in 1930 and by Hungary in 1931. Large number of Stutzen rifles were converted to this round, and most of the remaining long rifles were cut down to the 'Stutzen' length. Band-mounted front sight on a Stutzen indicates a cut down long rifle.

Most original M90 quadrant sights were completely replaced with new leaf sights graduated 400-2000 meters

Four different Long Rifle Rear Sight Modifications for Stutzen/Carbine use:

1. Graduated to 2200m, Most Common Variant
2. Graduated to 2200m, Stutzen Slide
3. Graduated to 1800m, Sight face milled
4. Graduated to 1500m only

A standard M1895-type knife bayonet (360mm overall, 248mm blade length), with an auxiliary front sight on top of the muzzle ring. This compensated for the change in point-of-impact caused by firing the Stutzen with the bayonet fixed. The effect was much more marked in the short-barrel Stutzens than the full-length rifles.
Austrian bayonet markings


8x56R production year identification:
At the 12 o'clock position a Roman numeral indicates the month of manufacture. 'I' would be January. The marking at the 6 o'clock position is the manufacturers mark. The two headed eagle at the 6 o'clock position used up to 1938 (Munitionsfabrik Wollersdorf). In 1938 they started using the German eagle. The 9 and 3 o'clock position shows the year of manufacture.

Boxer primed cases for both 8x50R and 8x56R are available from Huntington and Old Western Scrounger in the U.S. The 8x50R uses a .323 dia bullet, the 8x56R uses a .329 dia bullet.

Ammo Safety: the M95 rifles chambered for the 8x56mm cartridge are not recommended to be used with the old conical-nosed 8x50mm cartridge. Although both cartridges are rimmed, and headspaced at the rim, the 8x56mm is 6mm longer and more powerful. The spent 8x50mm cartridge cases will be re-formed to the 8x56mm shape. Many shooters used these 'exchanged' cartridges without any injury or damage, however these cartridges are not guaranteed to be safely interchangeable.