Mauser M712 Schnellfeuer

Mauser C96 Schnellfeuer

Mauser C96 knew very many alternatives since its design by the brothers Feederle and his finalization under the aegis of Paul Mauser. In fact, very many modifications made to its elements (tail of relaxation, extractor, dog, inter alia) as well as the varieties of markings make the enumeration exhaustive of the alternatives of Mauser C96 almost impossible. Nevertheless, for the Mauser company, the classification of Mauser C96 is very simple. There are only three recognized models. For the other versions, the collectors of the whole world get busy there with more or less happiness. The three models recognized by the manufacturer are:

- C96 (and all alternatives known or not)

- C96 model 1930 (sometimes named Universal Type or Model 711)

- Schnellfeuer (or Model 712, this weapon is also known under the name Mauser 1932. This denomination is referred to the year of the deposit of the patent of the mode of selection of shooting by engineer Westinger. The first patent deposited by engineer Nickl, selector of the same name, go back to 1930)

It is precisely Schnellfeuer which interests us. It acts of Mauser C96 model 1930 equipped with an automatic selector of shooting. In other words, it has the property to be able to draw in gust in more of the step by step drawing specific mode of use to all the automatic guns.


Photograph: Schnellfeuer. The identification is done normally by the selector of shooting being on the left side of the weapon. It is nevertheless possible to determine the model by the tail of relaxation characteristic of Schnellfeuer.


The keen demand for this kind of weapon in China, as well as the competition of the Spanish manufacturers selling of the copies of Mauser C96 (including models provided with the automatic shooting), will lead the Mauser firm to launch the study of this weapon. A version of C96 of this type seems to be studied during the First World War. Its development was not continued then. Mauser thus will charge its engineering and design department with developing this ultimate version of Mauser C96. Two patents will be born as we will see it further. Note: if the Spanish copies are inspired largely by the design of C96, the mechanisms are radically different and often from great quality.

712, A name of circumstance

The denomination "712" corresponds to the reference of ordering of the American distributor of the Mauser weapons, the Stoeger company & Co. (according to certain sources, this denomination would come at the beginning from the command code from a German merchant of weapons). As some consider it, it is easier to rather sell in the Thirties a weapon carrying the reference "712" than "1896". It is a good commercial argument. Utilsant same logic, the model 1930 will be named also arbitrarily "model 711". We are in the presence of the first gun "rafalor", ancestor of Beretta 93 R or of Glock 18 (see too Glock (gun)) of modern manufacture.


Appeared on a certain number of Mauser model 1930, the removable charger of 10 or 20 blows is systematized. Considering the rate of shooting, it is quite comprehensible. The most known version of Schnellfeuer uses the selector of the Westinger type. The other version, equipped with the Nickl selector, is considerably rarer. Schnellfeuer takes again safety known as "Universal" appeared on the model 1930.


Specimens of this weapon, in the majority of the cases, are confined to fire the ammunition from 7.63 Mauser. There exists nevertheless, but the diffusion more than is restricted, specimens confined in 9mm Parabellum (a few hundreds). Some Specimens of Schnellfeuer seem to be confined in 7,65mm Parabellum.


Not profiting from the highly sophisticated mechanisms of the current automatic weapons, Schnellfeuer suffers from a very strong raising of the gun at the time of the shooting in gust. The use of adapted ammunition, as well as the drive of the gunner, allow to reduce the phenomenon. In addition, there is not comparative study of the operation of Schnellfeuer according to gauges' used. Considering the power of the ammunition of 7.63 Mauser, it seems probable that a more flexible behavior is obtained with the model confined in 9mm Parabellum or in 7,65mm Parabellum. This remains to be checked.

On the ground

Just like its famous predecessors, Schnellfeuer was never regulatory in any army (the model says "1916", although having been the subject of a ordering of the German army, was never regulatory in spite of the 135 to 140000 delivered specimens). Particularly popular in China (without pun), a great part of the 100000 Schnellfeuer produced there will be exported. The last specimens available in Europe will be used during the second world war. Thus C96 will finish its career, in the hands of enemy combatants facing. Indeed, many Russian officers had made of this gun their personal weapon.

It is in addition with a weapon of this type that the king Alexandre Ier of Yugoslavia was assassinated in Marseilles on October 9, 1934. Touched by a projectile at the time of the attack,Louis Barthou, French Minister for the Foreign Affairs, was to find death later a few hours, bloodless.

Like all the other models of the great family of Mauser C96, Schnellfeuer, became an object of collection exerting a fascination for many collectors, in particular American and German.


In front of the success of M712 to export (China in particular), years 1930 transfer apparaîtres copies expagnoles with simplidiée mechanics:

- Astra 901 and F derived fromAstra 900,

- and the Royal MM31,

In the years 1980, popular China produced even Norinco Type 80 adapted to 7,62x25 mm Tokarev .


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