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The English and German Gunmakers. Hartmann & Weiss and Boss & Co.

Hartmann & Weiss .375 Over Under rifle on Boss action with Holland type reinforcement.

One thing about doing this blog which I occasionally find amusing is the comments from the 'trolls', the disgruntled, mostly spiteful, gun critiques who hide behind alias email address's. Every comment on the site has to be approved and I appreciate all the ones we get. Todays post on the Mauser rifles generated a comment I found particularly amusing, it was from Baron Radu von Goldman and read "theres no rifle in history that can compare to mauser m98 there english thiefs like jeffrey rigby holland&holland purdey westley richard have all stolen german rifles and cartridges since early 1900, now you tell me whats english?" The answer by the way is everything except the action!

So in response, as I cannot respond (to the alias email) on the merits of the Mauser vs Lee Enfield I thought I would take a few pictures of Germany's most respected maker Hartmann & Weiss's products.

As always fabulous guns and rifles, built with pride in Germany on the Boss & Co. over and under system which was of course designed and perfected by the firm in England..

Now you tell me what's English, Baron Radu!

Hartmann & Weiss GunsHartmann & Weiss .375 Bolt Action Take Down, .375 Over Under Rifle and 20g Shotgun.

Hartmann & Weiss and Boss & Co. Over under rifles Hartmann & Weiss .375 Over and Under Rifle and a Boss & Co. .500 3" Over Under.

Hartmann & Weiss and Boss & Co. Over Under Shotguns.Hartmann & Weiss 20g Over and Under and a Boss & Co. 28g Over Under.

NB. If you click on an image it will enlarge in a new window.


  • Neill on March 10, 2016 at 2:01 pm

    Interesting post Simon. The success of the Mauser 98 action is obvious in that it is still used by skilled gunmakers like yourself on dangerous game rifles, it has spawned many imitations and must be the leading action for hunting rifles. However, the Lee Enfield was never intended as a sporter, it was, first and foremost, an infantryman's rifle.

    I read somewhere that in WW1 the Germans had a hunters rifle, the Americans a target rifle, and the British a soldiers rifle. Even though the Boers used Mauser 98's with considerable success they had them initially as hunting weapons.

  • Vance Daigle on March 10, 2016 at 2:48 pm

    Good Day Simon,

    What great guns Sir, you have again gone into your legendary vault to shown us great builders of finest Guns....Many thanks!!!! I think that true followers can not thank you enough for the time and effort you give to this blog!!!!!

    As for the Baron and those like him, let me just say. Why must you see the splinter in an eye, and not see the branch in your own!!!!!!

    Gratitude that isn't expressed....Doesn't exist!!!

    In Christ

  • Gregg on March 10, 2016 at 6:57 pm

    Great guns!

    Do you know if H&W or Boss modify their OUs in any ways to account for the increased pressures generated by the rifle loads?

    Or do they use the same setup they're using on their OU shotguns?



    • Simon Clode on March 10, 2016 at 7:50 pm

      It is the same set up but a bigger action with more reinforcement. Boss file it into the shape and Hartmann have put bolsters like a Holland. The Holland Royal bolsters were added when the pressures of the cartridges increased.

      • Gregg on March 14, 2016 at 7:27 pm

        Thank you.


  • Jonathan Tomlinson on March 11, 2016 at 8:20 am

    Thank goodness for the "dishonesty" [sic] of Jeffry, Rigby, H&H, Purdey and Westley Richards and their (mis)appropriation of German technology which would clearly have left us bereft of the Mauser 98 and such fine cartridges as the .375 H&H, .404; .416 Rigby; .425 WR - the .400's; .450's et al through to that wonderful Germanic of rounds, the .600 Jeffery, need I go on and heap more shame on the English guntrade of old!!!


  • Edward Cowell on March 11, 2016 at 12:41 pm

    One comes across quite a lot of this sort of vitriol on the internet.

    Enthusiasts of good firearms, whether hunters, target shooters or collectors, may take pride and pleasure in the innovations and workmanship of their own nation, while according due respect to those of other nations - and find no contradiction in doing so. To a healthy mind set such as this an English rifle built on a Mauser action is not an act of thievery but a very worthy synthesis of influences.

    One suspects that Baron Radu may be more xenophobe than rifleman, and that his experience of firearms may begin, and end, with a computer screen. If he does shoot, then his views are all the more disappointing.

    I am not sure in what light the Lee Enfield was introduced to this scrap. I own two, and they are tremendously good rifles. But if anyone wants to use their supposed shortcomings as a stick with which to hit the English, it should be observed that we only brought the action to its ultimate state of refinement - it was originally designed by an American.

    All the best


    • Edward Cowell on March 11, 2016 at 2:08 pm

      I know I should have said 'naturalised American', but the point still stands.

      • Radu Baron Von G. on March 12, 2016 at 1:49 am

        I assure you I have not wrote that and someone else is posting slander on my name. I shoot and I respect gunmakers tremendously, naturalized American I am but also a great Anglophile and a lover of both English craftsmen and English sportsmen. In fact many are my friends and I have walked some of the finest gun vaults in London. I shoot around the world and I promote both sport and gun, and never do I talk of someone in the manner above. Simon Clode and Westley Richards have been an inspiration for years to me, silently I watch this blog and I consider it to be the absolute best in the world of its kind. With that being said I hope this 'clone troll' gets exposed or ignored and my 'nom de plume' not in any way gets associated with him or her.

        Rule Britannia,


        • Edward Cowell on March 15, 2016 at 4:12 pm

          Well I am very sorry for you that your name has been abused in this way. Now that you have made things clear we can, as you suggest, ignore the troll.
          Best wishes

  • Larry on March 11, 2016 at 1:18 pm

    It is especially true with the younger generation in that it's quite easy to be a "keyboard warrior" and, as you said, hide behind an email address and possibly a pen-name. There's still something said about opinions that are stated face-to-face and most will not do so these days.

    I think the Germans have a lot to be recognized for. Having lived there for some time, I can say that charm is not one of them! But machinists and engineers they are. It's quite easy to spot these German guns on the rack as they have, regardless of embellishment, and very Germanic look and feel.

    Having said that, H&W have always put forth very nice guns. They just don't have the "look" or the "feel" of a well-built English gun.

  • Mims Reed on March 11, 2016 at 5:57 pm

    I am glad I own one of those mixed breed Hartman and Weiss / Westley Richards bolt rifles in 505 Gibbs. I bought it from and American.
    Better tomorrows,

  • Radu Baron Von G. on March 12, 2016 at 12:21 am


    I am Radu, I use that (almost) alias, I have a fairly large hunting page on FB and I have nothing but the deepest respect for your as a person, the blog and spectacular images and knowledge here. I have no clue what impostor choses to pose on my 'nom de plume' throwing insults around. There is no cleaner proof other than me featuring your rifles and pictures in my FB page in the most polite and in fact as pure promotion to you. No doubt there will always be arguments but that sort of literary incapacity to express an argument or an opinion would never be something I would say. Much like a surprise would probably be to you if another Simon Clode showed up floating on social media and English gunmakers and ransacked you in front of people you have nothing but respect for. We have common friends and my email address is (given and removed for privacy. Simon) if it is of any use to you for contact.

    I hope this gets clarified and since I had never got a chance to thank you for the years of joy I silently get from watching your blog, reading great knowledge and enjoying the insanely beautiful gun photography, I hope this chance is as good as any.

    Thank you and whether this gets clarified or not in your eyes, please continue doing what you do, The Explora remains the finest gun blog there ever was on the Internet. Do not lose any sleep over trolls.

    Sincerely and with outmost respect,

    Radu, the fairly real 'Baron'

  • Radu Baron Von G. on March 12, 2016 at 1:55 am

    The only good thing about this 'Baron Radu' clone and his slander is the fact that it has enticed Simon to post yet another outstanding example of knowledge and magnificent images, which I am ever hungry for. I wish the keepers of this blog and the readers nothing but the best and send them my most honest greetings and sympathy for what they have brought to the table. I cannot say the same for the ingrate that has created this situation.

    Rule Britannia,


    • Simon Clode on March 12, 2016 at 8:22 am

      Thank you for your clarification and kind words about the blog. I assumed this was a fictitous name he created rather than hiding behind a clone, my apologies. As you say it did entice me to get the Hartmann's out of the safe, which can only be a good thing!

  • Charles on July 27, 2023 at 6:32 pm

    I have never been fortunate to own something like these examples, but I will say these are just about the most beautiful examples of craftsmanship I have ever seen, thank you for posting them.

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