Volkssturmkarabiner VK-98 rifle.
 Volkssturmkarabiner VK-98 rifle.
image courtesy: James D. Julia auction house, USA


Caliber: 7.92×57 mm
Action: manually operated
Overall length: 1031 mm
Barrel length: 598 mm
Weigth: 3.13 kg
Magazine capacity: none


During the closing months of the WW2 Hitler tried all possible means to stop Allied advances on all fronts. One of such means was creation of the Volkssturm organization, which conscripted males aged between 16 and 60 who were not already serving in German armed forces. Hastily trained and usually armed with second-hand or obsolete weapons, the Volkssturm formed the last line of defense of Third Reich. Due to shortage of small arms during late 1944 and early 1945, German industry developed a number of cheap, rude but at least marginally effective weapons, solely intended for Volkssturm use. Most of these weapons were very basic in design, crude in finish, made of inferior materials and with little attention to durability, fit and finish. The Volkssturmkarabiner VK-98 rifle was based on tried and proven Mauser Gew.98 / Kar.98K action (less magazine), mated with refurbished or newe barrels (sometimes re-manufactured from machine gun barrels) and crude wooden stocks. Volkssturmkarabiner VK-98 rifles were manufactured toward the very end of WW2, mostly at Steyr factory in Austria, which at the time was controlled by German army.

The Volkssturmkarabiner VK-98 rifle is a rotary bolt action, manually operated single shot rifle. It uses Mauser Gew.98 type bolt action with rotary bolt, but has no magazine, so every cartridge has to be manually loaded into the chamber. The sights are fixed, non-afjustable.