8mm Mauser Question


Today I picked up an 8mm Mauser out of a bag of random ammo at a local junk shop. It appears to me to be Israeli, but it’s just an educated guess. The headstamp is as follows " VIII (Markings that appear to be Hebrew, but could be Cyrillic…I’m not an expert in either) 55 and then a star that is the shape of the “Star of David” I assume the “55” is the year but what threw me off is that the bullet is a round nosed 7.9x57 J. It seems a bit late to still be using that load. Anybody have any answers? Thanks for the help.

p.s. The case is brass and the bullet is steel jacketed.


You are correct. The case at least is from Israel. This should be what your headstamp looks like. I am not aware of any Israeli 7.9mm loading that used a round nosed FMJ bullet.

These cases are boxer primed and were/are widely used by reloaders so you can find them with a large variety of non-original bullets.

If the bullet is in the .318 inch diameter range, someone might have been making shooting fodder for an old Commission Mauser.


yeah, that’s the guy right there. I was somewhat suspect of the primer. It didn’t look like an older primer, so I think that solves the mystery. Thanks for the help. Any collector value at all or are these pretty common?


hawkblueinaz–One of the questions I notice throughout most of your questions on the Forum is “Any collector value”. ALL cartridges, from the 1850’s (and before) right up to the latest thing to come off a production line yesterday, have collector value to a collector that collects that cartridge and does not have it. The REAL question is “How much collector value does it have”. That is a question only the individual that wants it can answer. For instance, my current passion is 7.62x39. There are headstamps of countries that, even though they are currently being made by the millions, I have little or no access to here in the U.S., such as Pakistan, Nigeria, India, etc.These may be a lot more common in Europe, and thus have a lot less value there, but since they are rare here, I would be willing to pay probably 10 times what a collector in Germany might pay for the same round.

As to the question “Should I shoot it or save it”, only you can answer that. I see posting here on the Forum all the time about rounds that the poster says “I was out at the range today shooting this or that.” To that shooter, who has a case of the stuff, it is only shooting foder, but often it is a headstamp that I would love to have in my collection. So to me it is Collector Ammo, not shooting stock.

So, I guess what I am trying to say is that the question is meaninglessness. It depends on who is answering it.



One way to find a value is to surf the various auction sites that offer SAA to get a feel for the pricing. It may take a while before an identical item comes up for bid, but if nothing else, you can see what similar items are going for and price or value your items accordingly. Specialist Auctions has quite a variety on offer and is a good source for ballparking a value of most things ammo and ordnance. Guy Hildebrand has an awesome site as well as Ammo-one. Consider as well the differences in retail, wholesale and trade value and the median would be a fair approximation of value of your specimen.
You’ll be hard-pressed to get a price out of anybody on the forum due the variables involved. Bottom line, it’s true value/worth/price is what somebody will give you for it.


SlickRick–It wasn’t really supposed to be a lecture, just an explanation of some of the reasons the question is hard to answer.





Consider yourself officially lectured. ;) ;)

What is “Specialist Auctions”? Is that an auction site? I don’t think I’ve ever heard of it. I need to do more surfing for SAA. I have about 2 hours each day with nothing to do. You know, the two hours bewteen the Oprah and Ricky Maddow shows.



Alright, cool, thanks for all the good info. That all makes sense, but i think what i was wondering in my head and what i put down on the forum are two different things. What I should have asked was are they rare at all, but as you stated before Ron, what’s rare here may not be rare in another country and I suppose that directly correlates the “value” of an item. My collection is still rather modest at around 1,000 cartridges and I haven’t stuck w/ just collection a certain type of cartridge yet. Also, I keep any different headstamp for and cartridge at this point (although that may change as i get more and more). So, for me, the collector value is a lot, at least until I get a double. I’ve collected a lot of different things, but more that any collection, values on cartridges are highly subjective, which can be a good and a bad thing. Thanks for the info, I really do appreciate it, because it does make sense. I’m still relatively new to the hobby, so all info is good info.



It’s a UK based auction site. Lots of ex-eBayers use it. Items listed have to be inert.