BACKGROUND: Although development of a Selbstladegewehr, (Semiautomatic rifle), had been undertaken by German armament factories as early as 1908, it wasn’t until the invasion of Russia in 1941, when the Germans came up against Russians armed with the quick firing Tokarev semiautomatic rifles that the Heeresfeldzeugmeisterei, (Army Ordnance Department), issued an urgent request for a comparable weapon. This led to the development of the Selbstladegewehr 41 in 1941 which, with modifications, evolved into the Gewehr 43 and eventually the Karabiner 43in 1943. The Gewehr 43 and Karabiner 43 were basically improved modification of the Selbstladegewehr 41, and were designed with an integral “T” shaped scope mounting base. This design allowed the rifle to be converted to a sharpshooters rifle with the ease of sliding on a preassembled, mass produced scope assembly. The four power magnification ZF4 sharpshooter’s scope was developed in late 1943 by the Voigtländer optical firm and was designed for use with the Gewehr 43 and Karabiner 43 semi-automatic rifles.
PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Four power magnification, blued, machine tooled steel construction scope is roughly, 15cm long with a 30mm diameter at both the ocular and objective ends and a square centerpiece. Fortunately the lens is super clear with no fogginess and is in perfect focus. The centerpiece features a raised, milled, range elevation adjustment dial with variable range adjustments from 100 to 800 meters in increments of 100 meters. The centerpiece also has a raised windage adjustment dial that is internally set. The optics are still clean and clear with the typical single vertical and dual horizontal side bar reticle pattern sights. The range elevation adjustment dial would normally raise or lower the reticle pattern as required although it is currently seized up. The scope is well marked with the impressed designation abbreviation, “ZF4”, indicating, Zielfernrohr für Karabiner, (Telescopic sight for Carbine 43), the manufacturers code, “dow”, indicating manufacture by Opticotechna G.m.b.H. of Prerau Czechoslovakia, a blue triangular lubricant code, signifying a lubricant that was effective to temperatures of +122 to -40 degrees Fahrenheit and the serial number, “49605”. The removable, black rubber eye-guard and the blued, sheet metal rain shield are both included and in overall very good condition. The scope comes with a blued, cast and machine tooled, steel, side rail mount assembly. The mount assembly consists of two, horizontal bars and two, vertical bars all of a one piece casting. The removable, black rubber eye-guard and the blued, sheet metal rain shield are both included and in overall very good condition. The scope comes with a blued, cast and machine tooled, steel, side rail mount assembly. The mount assembly consists of two, horizontal bars and two, vertical bars all of a one piece casting. The top horizontal bar has a tooled, semi-circular, cut-out to one side to accommodate the scope while the bottom horizontal bar has a tooled, dove-tailed, groove designed to slide onto the integral “T” shaped mounting base on the rifle. The bottom horizontal bar also has a tooled, movable, pressure lever and auxiliary locking clip to secure the mount assembly to the rifle. The pressure lever has impressed script to each side, with “fest”, (fast/locked), to one side and, “lose”, (loose/unlocked), to the other side. The mount is attached to the scope by two, blued, tempered spring steel retaining bands with corresponding screw threaded steel securing dowels. Also included is a protective lens cover which consists of a 35mm diameter, blackened leather cap for the objective end, riveted to a thin, 28cm long, blackened leather strap. The strap has a slid able, retaining strap with a single snap closure and a carved wooden plug to the ocular end for inserting into the rubber eye-guard. All the protective cover components are intact and the leather is still quite supple. Nice and very rarely seen complete example.
Price: To Be Determined As I Am Still Researching It
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Original vet bring back from Joe. E. Wanless of Sprinfield, IL who passed away in 2006. More information on Joe can be found with a simple Google search.
His entire liberated collection is displayed on a table in the photos below. It is remarkable at how much stuff he was able to send back to his home in Springfield and includes one of the original shipping crates with his name and home address on it.