Mannlicher M1888

The Repeating Rifle Muster 1888 better known as Mannlicher M1888 was a bolt-action rifle used by several armies from 1888 to 1945. Derived from the M1885 and later M1886 models, it was Ferdinand Mannlicher's third rifle that utilized the "enbloc clip".

It was succedeed by the Mannlicher M1895 as the standard service rifle of the Austro-Hungarian Army. The M95 uses a more secure rotating-bolt, in contrast to the M88's wedge-lock bolt.

Mannlicher M1888
Class Manportable
Type Rifles
Manufacturer Steyr Mannlicher
Production Period 1888 - 1896
Origin Austria-Hungary
Country Name Origin Year
Austria-Hungary 1888
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Austria 1888 1945 View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
FEG (Fegyver-es Gepgyar) 1888 1896 View
Steyr Mannlicher 1888 1896 1095000 View

The M1888 was a direct and immediate descendant of the M1886 Austrian Mannlicher. This rifle too was a straight-pull, bolt-action, box magazine repeater. As early as the beginning of production of the M1886 the need and desirability for a small-bore rifle was evident. This rifle is virtually identical to its predecessor but for chambering a newly designed 8 mm cartridge, loaded originally with black powder and denominated 8×52mmR.

M1888-90 rifle

Shortly thereafter, the M88 cartridge was converted to semi-smokeless powder. The new cartridge was designated 8mm M.1890 scharfe Patrone and its dimensions were 8×50mmR. The sights of existing black powder 8mm Mannlicher rifles were converted to accommodate semi-smokeless ammunition by the functional arrangement of screw mounting re-graduated sideplates onto the outsides of the existing rear sight walls. The converted rifles were denominated M.88–90.

M1890 rifle

When in 1890 semi-smokeless powder became available, manufacture of rifles with a longer and thus stronger chamber and modified sights began. Although the smokeless powder filled M.93 8×50mmR cartridge can be used in this rifle, the generated pressure at 40,000 psi (275.8 MPa) is marginal, as the wedge-lock bolt system this rifle uses was originally designed to be shot with less potent black powder filled 11×58mmR ammunution.

Type Bolt-action rifle
Place of origin  Austria-Hungary
Service history
In service 1888–1945
Used by Austria-Hungary
Kingdom of Bulgaria
Nazi Germany: Used by Volkssturm.
Kingdom of Greece
Kingdom of Hungary
Kingdom of Italy
Second Polish Republic
Wars Philippine Revolution,
1891 Chilean Civil War,
Boxer Rebellion,
First Balkan War,
Second Balkan War,
Russian Civil War,
Revolutions and interventions in Hungary,
Polish–Soviet War,
Greco-Turkish War,
Spanish Civil War,
Sudeten German uprising 1938,
World War I,
World War II (Volkssturm)
Production history
Designer Ferdinand von Mannlicher
Designed 1887–1888
Manufacturer Steyr-Mannlicher, Fegyver És Gépgyár
Produced 1888–1896
Number built 1095000
Variants M1888-90, M1888-95, M1888/24
Specifications (M88)
Weight 4.41 kg (9.7 lb)
Length 1,280 mm (50 in)
Barrel length 765 mm (30.1 in)
Cartridge M88 8×52mmR
M88-90 and M88-95: 8×50mmR
M88/24: 8×57mm IS
Action Straight-pull bolt action
Muzzle velocity 530 metres per second (1,700 ft/s) with M1888 ball cartridge
Feed system 5-round en-bloc clip (stripper clip in M88/24), integral box magazine
Sights Iron sights

End notes