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View Full Version : What is "Sporterized"?


BadMatt
08-26-2013, 10:47 PM
I've seen rifles advertised as "Sporterized" or "Sporters". What are they talking about? Thanks in advance.

jfifer
08-26-2013, 10:54 PM
It seems like they take a basic rifle and give it upgrades- stock, bipod, scope. Mostly synthetic/plastic furniture.

Divernhunter
08-26-2013, 10:58 PM
That is the art of taking a $400 mil surplus rifle, spending $500 modifying it to end up with a $200 rifle.

It was done allot in the 1940-1960's when you could buy mil surplus rifles for $15 and chop up the stock and maybe drill and tap for a scope to make a cheap hunting rifles. Some were rechambered. Some were rechambered and not marked as so. My brother shot his 1st deer with one. I used an orginal 30-40 Krag which I now wish I had kept.

In truth there were some really nice rifles made but they were still a mil surplus rifle/barrel. I would guess that today you are much better off buying a commercial rifle. Even the entry leval rifles today will usually shoot better than the sporters

ojisan
08-26-2013, 11:00 PM
Take a military rifle and remove the hand guards, reshape the stock, change sights, remove bayonet lugs, maybe add a scope or cut the barrel down, etc.
There is no standard "sporter" design.
Do a Google image search for K98 Mauser, then try K98 Mauser Sporter.
You'll see the differences.

Bobby Ricigliano
08-27-2013, 8:38 AM
'Sporterized' is a codeword that translates loosely as: "This used to be a collectible military surplus rifle. Some inbred mouth breathing bubba took a hacksaw to it and converted it into a a practically worthless hunting rifle".

Jeff L
08-27-2013, 1:48 PM
Here's one.
http://moviegunguy.com/WordPress/wp-content/gallery/sniper-weapons/lee-enfield-scoped.jpg
See this thread: http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=812863

Remus
08-27-2013, 5:53 PM
I can think of it being used in two legitimate circumstances, but more or less they both refer to using the rifle for hunting purposes. 1) Some manufacturers will refer to a sporter rifle (more to the point a sport barreled rifle) as opposed to a bull barrel target rifle that is better used on a shooting bench.

2) A sporterized rifle is a term that applies to a military surplus rilfle that was modified from its original configuration for the primary purpose of being a hunting rifle. This was done mainly in the era of the greatest generation. You know, those mouth breathers that went over to two different continents and kicked ***, oh and they also built the infrastructure that supports the current generation of mouth breathers.

Back to the topic at hand, in general a sporterized rifle would have the stock switched out (Fajen) and the receiver would be drilled and tapped for a scope. Sometimes the barrels were reworked to a high polish blue, it all depends on how much the owner wanted to spend on customizing the rifle. Insofar as current worth - not too much given there is now a glut of them in the used rifle bins, but certainly there can be sentimental value as many of these became the family deer rifle. Insofar as accuracy - the ones that I have used and seen used can shoot just as well at the gun range as any other rifle.

DennisCA
08-27-2013, 6:18 PM
As the old saying goes; "A picture is worth a thousand words"
Here's my M1903a3 that someone had sporterized:
http://imageshack.us/a/img842/738/wc1i.jpg
It's not the worst one I've seen.....
It's supposed to look like this:
http://world.guns.ru/userfiles/images/rifle/4/1288254229.jpg

toby
08-27-2013, 6:51 PM
It means making something into what you want it to be. If it's ruined so be it ,if it works better for you then you succeeded, if it did not, you lost nothing except a just another old milsurp rifle but to some you are an idiot and you messed with some so called history and shame on you. I am guilty, proud and will do it again!..:p looking to wreck a Spanish Mauser or Swede next.

plumbum
08-27-2013, 7:31 PM
Sporterize can mean as little as cutting excess wood from a full military-style stock to a complete overhaul using only a military action and making a full on hunting style rifle. Since mauser rifles were so easily converted, you'll see a lot of mauser-actioned sporters. Because Mosin Nagants were so cheap, any schmuck with a hacksaw suddenly became a guiltless "gunsmith".

Back when bolt-actions were hard to come by, this was how American hunters were able to step up from, say a .30-30 levergun to a surplus .30-06 Springfield.

BadMatt
08-27-2013, 11:09 PM
Thanks everyone!

rm1911
08-28-2013, 7:08 AM
That is the art of taking a $400 mil surplus rifle, spending $500 modifying it to end up with a $200 rifle.

:rofl2::rofl2::rofl2::rofl2::rofl2::rofl2:

L.A. Saiga
08-28-2013, 8:43 AM
That is the art of taking a $400 mil surplus rifle, spending $500 modifying it to end up with a $200 rifle.

This!

LMFAO

Amen!

Bobby Ricigliano
08-28-2013, 8:52 AM
Look up 'sporterized' K98 prices versus milspec K98 prices on Gunbroker. They can't even give the sporterized ones away.

NytWolf
08-28-2013, 8:53 AM
Made to look like a hunting rifle.

toby
08-28-2013, 4:34 PM
Look up 'sporterized' K98 prices versus milspec K98 prices on Gunbroker. They can't even give the sporterized ones away.

Really, I recently sold two sporterized 98's for over $500 one went for $750 and a Carl-G Swede for $425 and I just recently traded a sportered Swede for a Colt light rifle worth twice as much. It's not that they are not selling it's who's buying them and off course it's not the purists it's the sportsman and most sportsman are not today's people they are people from yesteryear who appreciate good old Mauser actions.

MakeYaBootyBurn
08-28-2013, 5:11 PM
I take it, this is a very sensative subject... a lot of angry yet totally hilarious comments...

The Gleam
08-29-2013, 11:04 AM
98% of the time, what everyone has said here is true; "sporterizing" is a debauchery of the utmost unspeakable kind. It was often done when many of these WWI/WWII and pre-Korean war rifles were just old surplus, not worth even a 1/8th of what a new civilian rifle from Winchester, Remington, or Browning might fetch - but made for good hunting rifles on the cheap. Most any hunter did away with the big chunky military stocks as soon as it arrived in the mail. Then some people didn't; Oswald used his in its original configuration.

HOWEVER.... there have been many very specific "sporterized" examples throughout history that are actually more valuable than their generic non-sporterized counterparts, depending on who did the sporterizing and why.

Any of these may relate to military models that then became factory civilian-intended sporting builds such as those from Walther, Remington, Springfield, or Steyr-Mannlicher, those commissioned by the NRA for matches, customs by specific builders, or those sporterized by specific military units for real-purpose use. Take some of the NRA 1903s or Phillipine Constabulary Krag-Jorgenesens carbines customized "sporterized" for any reasons such as the former.

It happens, true as it is rare, but if you get your hands on any of these examples, and you KNOW and can validate what you have by provenance, don't be surprised if that particular "sporterized" version is worth thousands more than a more pedestrian-but military version of the same model.

dangerranger
08-29-2013, 8:10 PM
http://i344.photobucket.com/albums/p345/dangerranger60/Picture089.jpg (http://s344.photobucket.com/user/dangerranger60/media/Picture089.jpg.html)

http://i344.photobucket.com/albums/p345/dangerranger60/Picture092.jpg (http://s344.photobucket.com/user/dangerranger60/media/Picture092.jpg.html)

http://i344.photobucket.com/albums/p345/dangerranger60/Picture090.jpg (http://s344.photobucket.com/user/dangerranger60/media/Picture090.jpg.html)

This is a sporter. It was built from left over parts from when I rebuilt a Military rifle for a friend to shoot in competitions. On this one I turned the bolt, D&Td the reciver, added the scope, added a Dayton trigger. After these pics I installed a K6 scope and lower rings. And cammoed it. It shoots like a custom rifle costing thousands, but was built for under $400.

In the 50s and 60s my grandfather built many sporters. He used a company called Herters to buy stocks, barrels, triggers and scope mounts. I wish my family had kept a few. But when they went out of style they got traded. My own first rifle was a K98 that was rebarreled to 30 06, D&Td, scoped, and a low safety was added. It had a high comb, and a hideous red white and blue laminated stock. At the time it was in style, but just a few years later It was traded for something more subtle. A well done sporter is something to be proud of. But there are millions of Bubba's guns out there that should have been left alone. DR

mosinnagantm9130
08-30-2013, 1:45 PM
Really, I recently sold two sporterized 98's for over $500 one went for $750 and a Carl-G Swede for $425 and I just recently traded a sportered Swede for a Colt light rifle worth twice as much.

You ever heard the phrase "a fool and his money are soon parted?"

stonefly-2
08-30-2013, 3:17 PM
iv'e got a mod. 96 swede, all matching numbers. iv'e been looking to trade for a bubba for years. not happening. i was going to sporterize it like i did the other one until i came to appreciate the mil. surp. collectors point of veiw. (it's a myth)
so here it is, anyone want to "save" this swede? just come up with a $200 bubba to trade (within reason) and it's yours. i couldn't hope to get this quality of rifle in an off the shelf rifle, who do you think your'e fooling?

toby
08-30-2013, 3:54 PM
You ever heard the phrase "a fool and his money are soon parted?"

Seems your the fool for not following my lead.....;) kidding kinda


PS, guess how many I have run through a Band saw....:D I simply have no affection for Milsurps, never have, never will, sorry but that's just the way it is with many.

vincewarde
09-19-2013, 8:45 PM
I don't think I have saved a lot of money buying converting Mausers. If that is your primary aim, do not do it. However, if you have the time to go slow and do it right, there is something satisfying about shooting a rifle that you have remade in to just what you wanted.

I did save money on my scout rifle project - and I hit my weight target of 7lbs scoped. It shoots 1-1.5 moa. The catch is that it took a lot of work and a lot of time. Total investment: A bit less that $300.00 and about 100 hours. Do the math - it you do not have fun doing it, than it just doesn't make sense. I had fun.

Here's a pic of how it turned out (http://www.douloscomputer.com/images/scout.jpg)

bsg
09-21-2013, 2:03 AM
the gun that i would desire would be in it's original configuration as it's designer intended it to be and whose manufacturer made it to be. that is not a sporterized version.

lewdogg21
09-21-2013, 5:52 AM
The sporterizing was done to convert heavy military rifles to something to be used for hunting. Since the vast majority of calgunners don't hunt and an even small % actually know what they are doing when it comes to hunting of course you get a flurry of negative posts.

Generally these negative posts come from the guys who roll up in their SUV's, stretch out their sandaled feet upon the cool crushed gravel of the range and then waddle over to a shooting bench where they set up their "custom thingymajiggle rifle" and punch holes in paper while talking to the other paper punchers like it's some great accomplishment.

Run on sentence is on purpose for effect.

:p

As far as the "stuff today is better" and "old stuff sucks". Well believe what you must.

'ol shooter
09-21-2013, 6:55 AM
:facepalm: It's not my Grandfathers fault, back in the 40's they didn't know any better. They took a beautiful 1933 Polish WZ-29 Cavalry Mauser, and sporterized it. It's a good shooter, has the old Redfield peep sight on the receiver, but boy, I wish it had never been touched. You don't see WZ-29's very often.

bloodhawke83
09-21-2013, 11:58 AM
:facepalm: It's not my Grandfathers fault, back in the 40's they didn't know any better. They took a beautiful 1933 Polish WZ-29 Cavalry Mauser, and sporterized it. It's a good shooter, has the old Redfield peep sight on the receiver, but boy, I wish it had never been touched. You don't see WZ-29's very often.

+1 most of the guns from my grandpa was sporterized. Rem m1903a3, G43, 98 Mauser.

Sent from my DROID RAZR using Tapatalk 4

1859sharps
09-21-2013, 5:02 PM
That is the art of taking a $400 mil surplus rifle, spending $500 modifying it to end up with a $200 rifle.

Today you are correct. But remember when this was the "hot thing" to do, they were taking as you said $15 dollar rifles, but they were turning them into "$200 rifles". so to speak.

'Sporterized' is a codeword that translates loosely as: "This used to be a collectible military surplus rifle. Some inbred mouth breathing bubba took a hacksaw to it and converted it into a a practically worthless hunting rifle".

But they weren't collectable back in the day. The rifles were being sold VERY cheap because they were all over the place, HIGHLY available and not viewed as "collectable history".

Even as late as the 1990's, several models of ww2 era rifles were still so plentiful that taking one that was beat to hell and back, but had a good receiver and bolt and sportrizing it was not a big deal because there was a 1000, or even 100,000 more where that came from.

Today...the supplies are drying up, even beat to hell and back samples are starting to have some value that didn't exist even 20 years ago.

bsg
09-21-2013, 5:46 PM
But they weren't collectable back in the day. The rifles were being sold VERY cheap because they were all over the place, HIGHLY available and not viewed as "collectable history".

Even as late as the 1990's, several models of ww2 era rifles were still so plentiful that taking one that was beat to hell and back, but had a good receiver and bolt and sportrizing it was not a big deal because there was a 1000, or even 100,000 more where that came from.

Today...the supplies are drying up, even beat to hell and back samples are starting to have some value that didn't exist even 20 years ago.

your points are well stated. the collector with historical sensitivity may embrace the ideal of maintaining the integrity of these weapons in their original configurations, and make effort to do so even before they achieve collectible status.

CRTguns
09-21-2013, 8:58 PM
generally a waste of money.

A really good modern rifle can be had for far less cash than the bill in parts and labor to make your military bolt look modern.

BroncoBob
09-21-2013, 9:04 PM
generally a waste of money.

A really good modern rifle can be had for far less cash than the bill in parts and labor to make your military bolt look modern.

Wise words from Mr. Lake

tacticalcity
09-21-2013, 9:13 PM
It absolutely kills me to see a military rifle stripped of all it's glory and history. If somebody else already butchered it that's one thing. Otherwise enjoy the masterpiece for what it is and just buy an inexpensive modern hunting rifle if you need a rifle like that.

NapalmCheese
09-22-2013, 5:22 AM
It absolutely kills me to see a military rifle stripped of all it's glory and history. If somebody else already butchered it that's one thing. Otherwise enjoy the masterpiece for what it is and just buy an inexpensive modern hunting rifle if you need a rifle like that.

It absolutely kills me to see people that are adamant that their mosin is collectible (i.e. a good investment) when it was one of 8 bajillion made, and 1 of 4 bajillion left on earth. If you want to play around at being a gunsmith, if you are a learning to be a gunsmith, or if you like custom stuff tailor made to you you could do worse than to sporterize an old military rifle (.338 Federal custom fit sporterized M48 anyone? Yes please.).

Buy two mil surp rifles, sporter one, leave the other in the cosmo. Now you've increased the value of the cosmo covered one and increased the utility and usability of the sportered one!

tacticalcity
09-22-2013, 5:47 AM
Never said "collectable", though they are fun to collect, or that it was a financial investment. I said it was a work of art and a piece of history. It is perfect just the way it is.

There are plenty of already butchered ones out there to play with. You don't need to ruin one that is still in military configuration to learn how to gunsmith. The pre-butchered ones will probably be cheaper anyway.

1859sharps
09-22-2013, 7:04 AM
generally a waste of money.

A really good modern rifle can be had for far less cash than the bill in parts and labor to make your military bolt look modern.

today yes. but remember, back in the day that was not the case.

while not old enough to have actually bought rifles and experienced it my self, I am old enough to remember hearing and reading about the lack of accuracy and other quality issues with mass produced commercial rifles.

taking a "cheap" (as in price) military surplus rifle, having it sporterized was a economical way to get a tack driver.

it was in part this competition that drove the commercial guys to step up their game and do a better job, which caused your statement to become the norm, not the exception. a rifle that shoots out of the box better than the average shooters skills...that is fairly new in my life time.

It absolutely kills me to see a military rifle stripped of all it's glory and history. If somebody else already butchered it that's one thing. Otherwise enjoy the masterpiece for what it is and just buy an inexpensive modern hunting rifle if you need a rifle like that.

this is also a fairly new attitude. not that it is wrong or anything. But new and clearly one that would only be held by someone who is fairly far removed from the events that lead to the creation and use of what we think of as military surplus rifles.

When these guns were dime a 1000, the people buying them and "butchering" them in to "sporters" were the same people who just a handful of years ago had been on the front lines either shooting them at the enemy or being shot at by them. to these people, they were not anything but a cheap source of a VERY solid receiver and bolt. there was no historical value because they were the ones who had been using them or had them used against them.

BigBamBoo
09-22-2013, 1:05 PM
Here is one my Dad did back in the 60's. He bought the original rifle mail order for either $12 or $17.
He was a hobby gunsmith...built a lot of stocks from Chico walnut that he got when they put the freeway through Chico.

He had a home built bluing tank, small lathe, checkering tools, etc.

He built this one for my mother for her deer rifle.


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