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The Karabiner 98 Kurz (shortened to Karabiner 98k or Kar98k) is a German bolt-action rifle used by the Wehrmacht in the mid 1930s. It replaced the Gewehr 98 as the German service rifle.

Name[edit | edit source]

Karabiner 98 Kurz is German for "carbine 98 short". The Kar98k, though, has the length of a full powered rifle. The weapon was a shortened derivative of the earlier Karabiner 98b, which was also a carbine in name only. The Kar98b was designated as a carbine to comply with the Treaty of Versailles, which only allowed Germany to produce carbines. The Kar98k retained the name.

Users[edit | edit source]

The Kar98k was the main service rifle of the Wehrmacht during 1930s and World War 2.

It was given to NVA by the Soviet Union from ones that were captured. It is still being used by some rebels in the 2011 Libyan Civil War.

After the Second World War, batches of K98ks were refurbished by the Norwegian military. A new barrel in .30-06 was added, the front sight was replaced with a square post, and the German markings on the receiver and stock were removed. Norwegian markings were stamped onto the rifles. Due to the caliber change, the front receiver bridge had a small slot cut into it to accommodate the .30-06 rounds loaded from 5-round stripper clips. The magazine itself was also modified. The .30-06 versions were known as the K98k-F1 and the .308 version was known as the K98k-F2. The former remained in service with the Norwegian Army, Air Force and police until the 80s, whereas the Home Guard used them until the 90s (when it was replaced by the Kongsberg AG3). These are still very popular and quite abundant on the Norwegian market, often going for less than 1000 NOK (or ~$170).

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