Modern Firearms - Mauser rifle M1889 (Belgium) / M1890 (Turkey) / M1891 (Argentina)
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Mauser rifle M1889 (Belgium) / M1890 (Turkey) / M1891 (Argentina)

Belgian Mauser rifle M1889


Belgian Mauser rifle M1889


Turkish Mauser rifle M1890


Argentinean Mauser rifle M1891


Belgian Mauser cavalry carbine M1889


Argentinean Mauser carbine M1891


Mauser rifle M1889, close-up view


Mauser rifle M1889, diagram




Overall length

1270 mm / 50”

Barrel length

780 mm / 30.7”

Weight, empty

3.68 kg / 8.1 lbs

Magazine capacity

5 rounds


The Mauser model 1889 rifle, also known as Belgian Mauser, was the first rifle from the famous German arms-making factory Mauser Werke to fire small-bore, smokeless powder ammunition. It was rejected by German authorities but was adopted by Belgium in 1889, Turkey in 1890 and Argentine in 1891. Belgian-issue rifles were manufactured in Belgium by private factory Fabrique Nationale (FN in short, which was founded especially to manufacture these rifles) and by State arms factories (Manufacture D'Armes De L Etat or MAE in short). During WW1, Belgian Mauser M1889 rifles were produced for Belgian government in exile by Hopkins & Allen in USA and in Birmingham (UK) by a factory manned mostly by exile Belgian workforce from FN. Turkish and Argentinean Mausers of this pattern were produced in Germany. Turkish rifles were made by Mauser as a continuation of earlier contracts, and Argentinean rifles were initially made by Ludwig Loewe and later by DWM. Argentinean pattern rifles also were adopted by several other South American countries, like Colombia, Ecuador or Peru. During 1930s, at least some of Belgian M1889 Mausers were converted into Model 1889/36 short rifles, which were destined for Civil Guard use.


Mauser model 1889 rifle is a manually operated rotary bolt action rifle. Its bolt has dual locking lugs at the front, with claw extractor inletted into bolt head and blade-type fixed ejector set into the receiver. Box magazine holds five rounds of ammunition in single stack, and has feed lips made of spring steel. Magazine can be loaded through the opening at the top of receiver, using single rounds or 5-round stripper clips. Magazine assembly is separated from trigger guard, and can be easily removed from rifle for maintenance or replacement. Magazine catch is located inside the trigger guard. Like some other contemporary rifles, Belgian Mauser is equipped with tubular barrel jacket. Argentinean and Turkish Mausers of this type had no barrel jacket, and featured wooden handguards. Stock is of conventional wooden type. Bayonet mount is provided near the muzzle. There were several patterns of carbines, based on the same basic design but made with shorter barrels and barrel jackets. Belgian carbines had tubular barrel jackets, while Argentinean carbines had no jackets and full-length stocks that covered entire barrel up to the muzzle. Modified Belgian model 1889/36 short rifles also were made without barrel jackets.