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Couple Matching Pistols

Article about: Great looking pair of pistols. Would love to have a P-38 and P-08 together. Thanks for showing.

  1. #31

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    No doubt we're all well aware of the use of sub-contractors' parts, but I can't believe that the Spreewerke factory, nor Mauser and Walther for that matter, told their sub-contractors first, "I need x number of magazines [or any other parts] and they need to be sequentially numbered as follows...." and second that they'd have workers searching through the sub-contractors' parts deliveries to mate them up with completed guns. If anything, it'd make more sense to have workers unpackage sub-contractors' parts, stamp them with the requisite serial numbers to match the guns on their work bench and then assemble the whole package. That being the case, then again, why the different fonts? Surely a gun factory would have the ability to make their own stamps and have some semblance of standardization. Speculation on my part of course...

    But what about the second part of the question, to whit, the possibility a pre-1943 magazine in a 1944 gun? I'm not saying that's the case here, but if we presume Buxton is the authority and has done more research on the subject than the rest of us, this could not possibly be a case of a magazine "force" matched to a gun? Likewise, if these were matched post-1942, why aren't we collectors seeing more of these examples? Certainly there are plenty of pre-1942 P.08s with matching magazines, even with the nearly-hundred-year-old Imperial P.09s and the Wiemar P.08s.


    I think that if we truly want to hear some insight into interesting case, you should post photos of over at Orv Reichert's P38 forum Welcome to the P38 Web Site....


    Nonetheless, it's certainly a pretty pistol and you should be quite proud to have it in your collection. (I have an equally minty byf 43 in mine; I'll have to post some photos of it sometime.)

  2. #32

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    If it helps, I found this over at the P.38 forum: http://www.atarian-alps.com/pdf/magazine_guide.pdf

    It reads, in part:
    Spreewerk Manufacture
    Spreewerk magazines were not serialized, and no small parts were WaffenAmt marked.


    And also:
    Contract Manufacture
    Magazines of Czech manufacture were distributed to primary manufacturers, as well as used as field replacement magazines. Magazines were not serialized, and no small parts were WaffenAmt marked. Replacement magazines will not have the primary manufacturers WaffenAmt (e/359, e/88/, e/135, e/WaA135).

  3. #33

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    Actually, I could quite easily visualize workers on the assembly line reaching down and picking out magazines from a box in regular order and inserting them into the appropriate pistol as they go. But to wait until the delivery of the magazines To Spreewerke and Then have the workers stamp them with numbers would be impractical. The floor plates would have to first be removed, stamped with numbers and then the whole clip would need to be reassembled again to insert into the waiting pistol-it would be unwieldy and impractical. Much more logical to the German way of thinking for efficiency to have them prenumbered and ready to slap into the already assembled pistol.
    So, why were they not All numbered like this then? That's the 10,000 dollar question. I have seen many more than just this one magazine with numbers on them-and they generally all had the same font look to them, so, apparently, these number markings were done at JVD, but, for the record, this is the first and only one that I've ever seen that Matched the pistol's number. What was the significance of making what seems to have been a small run of serialed magazines? That, I have no clue on. What I Do know, however, was that this particular pistol came straight from a GI recovery in Germany in 1945 and returned home with the GI who picked it up. It would have been nice if he had made detailed notes as to what unit the German was with, etc, but no such luck. So, despite the accepted statements that no magazines were ever serialized to the Spreewerke P38's, here is one glaring contradiction sitting in a Polish made holster that I, basically, cannot explain either.
    Now as to the second part of your question-the one about other letter suffix's magazines with the same number being possible, yes-it certainly could be possible. If these numbered mags were used Only at Spreewerke(and this is only a guess here) then there should theoretically be 28 clips that bear this same number, since Spreewerke produced 280,000 pistols-or 10,000 per month. It would be stretching credulity, though, to say that by some cosmic coincidence, this One magazine with the Same number as the pistol it was being inserted into just happened to match that pistol's numbers. But, also take into consideration, that All JVD magazines do not have floor plate number markings. So, about the only theory that would cover everything is that these P38's with the marked JVD clips had to have been a special batch for a particular group, unit, or what have you. They were apparently needed to be recognizable from the rest of the normal run pistols. Why and for Who? Again, unknown. The fact that this one was found in the field tells us nothing, as we have no idea who the issued owner was and what his job or unit was.
    I do, think that it might be interesting, if nothing else, to perhaps post it as you suggested on Orv Reichert's P38 forum. I'd actually never heard of this forum before just now, so ,though it might be hair ripping frustrating, it would also be absolutely interesting to hear the P38 guru's reactions and opinions of it! I'll have to see what I can do about it when I can! Nothing's quite as fun as tossing a cat into a dog show, hey? lol
    William

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

  4. #34

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    Hello Bill, Well, I took your advise and went to the P38 Forum. I contacted Leon DeSpain the magazine man and sent him some photos of the mystery pistol and.....it's still a mystery. He can't explain it any more than we can, so I guess it'll just have to remain one of those weird things no one can tell us anything about!
    William

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

  5. #35

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    Quote by Wagriff View Post
    Hello Bill, Well, I took your advise and went to the P38 Forum. I contacted Leon DeSpain the magazine man and sent him some photos of the mystery pistol and.....it's still a mystery. He can't explain it any more than we can, so I guess it'll just have to remain one of those weird things no one can tell us anything about!
    Excellent! I'd like to follow up on this and satisfy my curiosity too. Post a link, if you don't mind...I did a quick search but couldn't find anything.

  6. #36

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    Hello Bill, I contacted Leon directly and sent him the photos that I had of it, so there really isn't any link to show! I can post his emails here, if you would like, but I don't know if he'd be alright with that. Here is a few bits of them: "If the number is period applied, my best guess is that an armorer in the field applied the number when he replaced a lost or damaged magazine in the pistol. It would be very unusual for that to happen but itís the only explanation I can come up with. At this point, your guess is as good as mine."
    William

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

  7. #37

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    Is there any chance of a few more photos, William? Perhaps more the pistol's markings and the magazine's markings? Also, could you show a picture of the locking block plunger (the small "pin" at the rear of the locking block....it activates/pivots the locking block)? The same with the holster would be great. Thanks.

  8. #38

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    Hello Bill, Apologies for the photos, but these things are a bear to photograph and I'm lucky if I can use a point and shoot throwaway. If the wife was home, she'd be able to do it, but no such luck. I had to put some tint in the one under the barrel to make it seeable -hope that's okey. In the meantime, here's about the best I could get for you. I couldn't see any more markings anywhere on the mag or the pistol. I took a couple of the markings on the inside of the holster, as they didn't want to come out very good. The "clg 44" is marked on the outside on the front under the flap beneath the strap. The last photo is a tiny microscopic marking on the left side of the slide. I almost thought it was just a nick in the steel.
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    William

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

  9. #39

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    I think leon hit the nail on the head.


    Take notice where and how it was numbered vs other p-38 numbered mags,too........

    I have a numbered P-38 mag where a armorer, or at the plant crossed out a few of the numbers with a x. but the three numbered mags I have are all the same exact spot(at the rounded end stamped width wise,and stamped in a block

  10. #40

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    Hello Mike, Field applied is definitely a possibility, but why it would be necessary, is anyone's guess. Why go to all the trouble of numbering one, when a plain unmarked would do the same and easier?
    William

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

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