Type 13 Manchurian Mauser – A WW1 Legacy in China

This rifle is being sold at Rock Island on December 2, 2018.

The Liao Type 13 was produced at what would become known as the Mukden Arsenal in Manchuria starting in 1924, with production facilitated by the Steyr company of Austria. Late in World War One, Steyr developed an improved pattern of Mauser rifle, with a shrouded firing pin, shrouded striker, gas vent holes, detachable box magazines, and receiver dust cover. The rifle was not put into production because of cost and time constraints, and after the war Steyr was prohibited from building military arms by the Treaty of Versailles. However, they were able to license the design to Zhang Zuolin, the ruler of Manchuria. About 140,000 were made in total, know today as the Liao Type 13 or simply the Manchurian Mauser. The Manchurian version incorporated most of the Steyr design elements with the exception of the detachable magazines. Unfortunately, virtually all of these rifle today are missing their dust covers, which also served to prevent the rear of the bolt from rotating while being cycled. Owners today need to be careful of this, as we can see from the gouge in this particular one.


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