German K98 Sling

 

 

A Note on German Slings by Claus Esperholt

Click Here for Claus' Collectors Website)

All K98k"s, G43"s and MP44"s used the same "Karabiner" sling made of leather with a diamond pattern embossed. It had a keeper (Frosch) in butt stock end and three holes for adjustment. The keeper had a steel stud. Length 120 cm = 47".  The MP38/40 used a shorter (108 cm = 42") leather sling with only two holes and no "Frosch" (click here for example).  A sling with no diamond pattern may be postwar Norwegian.  A longer sling (142 cm - 55") may be postwar Austrian if it has a steel stud on the keeper or Yugo if it has a brass stud on the keeper.  Be suspicious about a Kar.98 or K98 marked sling. The same concerns a late war sling with WaA number and production code. The Germans had at this time other things to do than stamping slings. Many of the early slings had a company code, eg. S&L.

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Leather Variants

 

Pictures courtesy of Rick Dye

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Nazi Stampings on K98 sling retainers (called a "Frosch" in German)

Pictures courtesy of Miss T of Treasure Hunt Arms

Notice the Waffenampts (Eagle over Swastika) on the right hand picture.  Also notice the checkered grain on the right picture.

 

Pictures courtesy of Hayes Otoupalik

Genuine leather sling from WW II German Mauser 98k rifle. The leather has the proper cross weave pattern impressed in the surface. The attaching "frog" is marked "Winderlich Nach Berlin 1939", so this is a nice pre-war production item. 

 

Picture and information courtesy of www.geocities.com/bergflak

Marked "JOSEPH MOLL    GOCH   1939

 

Picture and information courtesy of www.geocities.com/bergflak

L.S. Fkv 1938

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Leather Stampings on K98 sling

Picture courtesy of Tom Arter

CVX 44 stamping on a K98 sling

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Ink Stampings on K98 sling

K98 sling ink stamped maker code 'RBNr 0/1007/1593' - 44'  (indicating a 1944 mfg date)

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Stampings on K98 sling buckles

Pictures courtesy Jonathan Webber

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Rare Web Variants

Pictures and information courtesy of Gary Hirdler


      So far, I have been able to identify three companies which
manufactured the web sling, and each appears to have been producing the web
slings based upon a fixed design standard. In other words, each company
utilized the same design. However, there are seen many different combinations
of webbing type, texture, and color. Another fascinating side note is that
even though the design was fixed, and useable for all the standard military
rifles in the 3rd Reich, most of the slings were stamped for a single
application, such as for the K98 rifle, or the Stg44. Same sling, same
company, but ink stamped for a specific use. Anyway, I found it odd they
would do this, when it really didn't matter.  

  

Page taken from: DAS SYSTEM ADALBERT DER K98K
Author: Albert Waker

Translation via Accent Duo.


The Sling

Working with the K98k, VGL [foreword-ordinance] led to the improved
development of the carbine sling for the K98. Instead of the awkward clasp
for the adjustment of length, {referring to G98 sling} the new sling had a
quick-adjustment slide buckle. [aka roller buckle] Like the earlier model,
the new model was also made out of leather. This sling pattern remained
unchanged throughout the entire war in both material, and design.  
Some attempts were made to develop a sling that hung the K98 carbine in
front [of the person] from the Y-belt. This design showed itself as
unserviceable in the field. Also a special Finnish sling for the carbine was
refused for troop testing. [This Finnish design] through use of a double
looped belt, the carbine could be brought to shooting position without
removing the sling from the body. For mountain troops operating on skis this
was quite practical, but for normal infantry use this sling was too awkward
and cumbersome. Apart from this, the sling was far and away too costly in
time, and material to produce.
     Another design [made] out of plastic showed itself as not suitable for
everyday use. The material responded unpredictably in strong weather
fluctuations like cold, heat, and wetness. In which it broke, stretched, or
swelled. Also the mechanical strength in the area of the buttonholes was not
user friendly.
Against these failures the sling made out of webbing proved usable and
promising. It was intended for use with the K98k, K43, Stgw 44, VG and VK.  
Instead of the frog, a simple fat end made out of two pieces of leather held
the sling into the sling-breakthrough of the buttstock. As a substitute for
the roller buckle, the length of the sling could be varied with the
adjustment holes nearest the forward ring. These [adjustment holes] were
reinforced on one side with leather.
     As a topic, the web sling has been rarely covered before now. Often
said to be found only on the Vg1 and VK1 rifles - Giving the wrong impression
that the web sling was never in full series production.  

 

Stamping on the web-style sling

Picture and information courtesy of Claus Espeholt

(Click Here for Claus' Collectors Website)

The codes are: "bcb", "clg" and "oxm".  The gun type was also indicated: K98, K43 or MP44 - this wasn't the case at the leather slings.

 

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