Tanaka Karabiner 98k review
Macki (airsoftler@aol.com)

Stock Specifications
Model Tanaka Karabiner 98k
FPS 584 m/s (with 0.2g)
Length: 1100mm
Weight: 4000grams

Ammo capacity:

10 BBs

First Impression: I got a realsteel version of the 98k,so i knew how big etc it is. As I opened up the box I couldn´t believe how detailed it is! Its EXACTLY like the realsteel! The only thing which is "wrong" is the cocking lever, which is not built exactly like the real one (More about that later) It's really solid - nothing is "ratling" if you swing it around ,nothing is "creeking" or anything.

The gun is COMPLETELY made of metal and wood! The wood is very well made, a bit too bright, but it just looks like a brand new 98k! As I first poped up the bolt and pulled it back,I was "shocked" about how light and smooth it can be done!

I have a realsteel Kar98k ...which is about 100times harder to handle =) (More about the handling later)

The Gun: The gun comes packaged with a Japanese manual and a loading rod I never used the loading rod, instead I simply dropped one BBafter the other into the magazine.

Yes, there are some Nazi symbols on the replica but there are very small…so you wont see them until you spend a few minutes and have a closer look at the replica.

The symbols are on the metal end of the stock, as you can see in this picture ...and in the "system head" (This is where the bolt on the realsteel locks in place)

On the "system head" there are also the following markings: "BNZ 43", as you can see in the inset picture (below). On the left side of the replica you will find the markings "Mod 98 14015" and "ASGK MFG. TANAKA WORKS"

The wood and the metal has no "mistakes" as I said, it's really well made, and built just like its realsteel counterpart. The length is also exactly like the realsteel, but strangely it's not as heavy as the real one! Its quite heavy, but not too heavy and weighs in at 3,3kg.

I have a realsteel leather sling for it, and unsuprisingly it fits. One item that will also fit to the Tanaka Kar98 is the realsteel bayonet. I have one myself - and it will fit, but that said I will not try to attach it as it will damage the paint on the rail where the bayonet fits on.

The bolt can be removed like the realsteel, to remove the bolt:

1) pull the bolt back and then 2) pull on the release latch

3) pull out the bolt

After pulling the bolt out you should have something that looks like the above image.

That's it, you are now ready to clean the barrel,chamber etc. To get the bolt back in ,just push it slowly back into place - this is the bolt: The safety also works just like the realsteel. If the safetyswitch is placed to the left you can fire the replica.
When it's moved to point upwards (straight in the air), you will not be able to fire it, but you will still be able to move the bolt When the safety is placed to the right, you cannot fire the gun and you will also be unable to move the bolt

Note: The safety can only be moved,when the gun is cocked!


Look at the buttom of the pic in the middel you see the safety switch now look at the round thing it's inside the gun now look at the safety -positions pictures you can see that this thing is out of the gun that's the hammer you can always see if the gun is cocked or not!

The gun works with a magazine, and the magazines houses both the gas and the BB´s I haven't shot mine that much, because I just don't have any gas! But a full gas charge will not last that long (20-25rounds I guess). That said every shot is REALLY REALLY powerfull! (more about the power later)

The magazine takes 10 rounds which isnt that much, even for a bolt action rifle! The magazine is very well built, and has no leaks.

You get a speedloader in the box for the magazines, but I didn´t used it at all, I found it easier to just poke the BBs into the magazine by hand.

To remove the magazine, you pull the bolt back, and press the magazine-release button as shown in this image.
One handy feature is that to chamber a BB you don't have to move the bolt back the whole way - you can simply move it about 1-2 cm..that's enough to chamber a BB.

To remove the mag, you pull the bolt back, and then press the mag release catch at which point the magazine slides out of the gun. The whole pricess is fairly easy, so a reload can be done quiet fast but not that fast

Power: I'm sure some of you heared that the gun is powerfull - but how powerful is it?

Well…I didn´t believe it, as I first read 888´s Kar98 review where he said it comes in at around 500 to 600 fps well…as I first shot it I thought "WOW" its not LOUD, but the BB flew THAT wide and fast,I couldn't believe it is an untuned Airsoft replica!

After chronoing it, I now truly believe 888 - mine chrono's at around 584fps with 0,20g BB´s with Top Gas (the temperature was about 15°C).

Then I shot a metal wall which I shot with my standard Steyr AUG from Marui well…..look at the pic (to the left)…it says more then 1000words. The big dint is the one from the Tanaka 98k the others are from a 280fps Steyr AUG

Then the second question of some guys out there was/is: "Can I snipe with it"or "is it accurant"
well here's another photo of my shot grouping.

This grouping was achieved at a distance of 10meters the bbs were 0.20g and there was no wind present. Please note that I didn't even adjusted have to adjust the hop-up for these shots!

The picture shows a group of 6 shots in 6 cm´s. Personally I think that's really impressive for an UNTUNED gas rifle with adjustable hop up I shot the 98k from the prone position, the 98k was resting on my hand. It is of course possible to shoot a more accurate grouping with the rifle set on a sandbag or some other stable rest.

Tanaka 98k vs. REALSTEEL 98k: Here are some comparison photos between the real Kar98, and the Tanaka replica.

In the photo to the right the Tanaka is the lighter coloured rifle (to the bottom).

At the top is the Tanaka 98k note the different stocks, but mine is not the german version 98k, unlike the tanaka 98k replica.
Side view of the trigger housing
The rearsight assembly. Note the scope-mount on the tanaka 98k
Note the "different" front sights mine has no cover around the really sharp front sight. On the Tanka 98k the front cover is removeable.
The frontsights, both are adjustable for different ranges
(useless on the tanaka 98k, I guess)
...its adjustable from 100 to 2000meters
The safety mechanism with the hammers uncocked
The mechanism with bolts up, and cocked hammers
... a different angle
Here the feeding "lip" and chamber of the realsteel 98k, and the magazine of the tanaka 98k
The tanaka 98k trigger-mechanism
...and the realsteel´s mechanism (note: they are almost the same)

More photos: Here's a few more photos that didn't easily fit into the review.

Conclusion: Well, I'm really impressed with this rifle - the power, the range (didn't test it that much, because it's really windy today) and the accuracy are REALLY good for a standard (stock) rifle!

The wood and the metal are extremely well made I don't like to say its "worth the money" I think it's a bit too expensive, but hey….it's a new release. I think the price will fall a bit, the right price should be around 350-400USD


5/5 (hey…584 fps for a standard rifle,really good accuracy)

Value for money

3.5/5 (350-400$ would be a good price,I got mine for 440$)

Upgrade potential


Build quality

4/5 (only the trigger is a bit loose)



If you like the look,want a REALLY good standard rifle, even as a counter-sniper role, GET IT!!!

By Macki
Email me at airsoftler@aol.com if you have some questions!

Site Links: 888's kar 98k review

External Links: TBA

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Last modified: Wednesday, May 9, 2001 9:37 AM. Copyright 2001 ArniesAirsoft