Designed by Manuel Mondragon, Mexican Army Colonel, artillery officer, and noted military arms designer, the Mondragon series of rifles were the first semi-automatic long guns adopted by a national military. A very intricate weapon requiring precise mechanical tolerances, the manufacture of the Mondragon was sourced to Switzerland, where the SIG factory was able to rise to the challenge of building a machine that had to fit together like a fine watch and still be able to stand up to the rigors of combat. In spite of its origins, very few Mondragons made it to North America, with only 400 of the Model 1908 rifles reaching Mexican shores before the Revolution broke out, and the rest sold to the Germans, who often outfitted them with drum magazines and issued them to observers/gunners on early airplanes. This example is equipped with the appropriate latch to accommodate the use of a drum magazine and no Mexican or German military nomenclature or examination markings can be found. Blade front and ladder rear sights, with the adjustable gas port assembly mounted on the end of the forearm just behind the bayonet lug and a fixed blue magazine. The stock is smooth hardwood, with "81.75" stamped on the left side near the magazine, blued fittings, a straight wrist, and a hardwood extension that takes the length of pull up to about 14 inches.
Fine, incomplete (see below) with 80% plus original blue finish, showing mild wear and handling marks overall, along with a small amount of spotting. The otherwise very good modified stock shows numerous scratches and dents, plus the aforementioned pieced butt extension. Some components are absent, including the receiver endcap and the bolt carrier.
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