Re: Mauser 98 bolt sticky
From your explanation, I'd say that it's not inside the bolt itself.
And, it occurs before you try to lift/close the handle. So, it's not the lug faces/abutments.
That pretty much narrows it down to the fit between the bolt and the reciever.
The front scope mount or bottom metal screws are often a culprit if they extend just a hair too deep.
If you can't determine through inspection, then I would apply some layout blue to various parts of the bolt and run it in/out a few times to see where it scrapes off.
You might even remove it from the stock just to be sure nothing's putting it in a bind.