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Interesting Luger

Article about: I came across this rather interesting Luger the other day, and never able to resist a bargain - I made the purchase. It arrived today... and what a bargain it has turned out to be. Originall

  1. #1

    Default Interesting Luger

    I came across this rather interesting Luger the other day, and never able to resist a bargain - I made the purchase. It arrived today... and what a bargain it has turned out to be. Originally a 1916 -dated pistol, it has been re-furbished by the East German authorities... possibly for issue to the VOPO, but in truth it could have been for any branch of the services. It carries East German proofs - as well as the original Imperial marks. There is no serial number to the barrel or magazine, but everything else is matching (except grips). The toggle action is off a pre-war Mauser with original last two of the serial barred out and new serial added. It was deactivated in August 2018, so it cannot be stripped... and it does not go 'click' when you squeeze the trigger. But the toggle action still functions as it should. Whatever your views on the deactivation process, it is still a very nice looking lump of metal! Condition is excellent with minimal pitting and just slight damage to L/H grip. The gun isn't as grey as it looks in the pictures... it is black.

    Many of the current batch of deactivated Lugers on offer are absolute beaten-up rusty old dogs with prices ranging from £750 for the worst examples, to £850 for the slightly better. A really good gun would probably set you back at least £1,000 or more. Which brings me back to this gun. I purchased it from John Carlin of J.C Militaria... and if you include the cost of 'Special Delivery' postage, it set me back a total of £645... Now that's what I call an absolute bargain.

    Click on images twice to enlarge.

    Cheers,
    Steve


    Interesting LugerInteresting LugerInteresting LugerInteresting LugerInteresting LugerInteresting LugerInteresting LugerInteresting Luger
    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.... 'A Salford Pal: Pte Thomas Jay.'

  2. #2

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    A very nice piece of history Steve and great condition due to the East German refurb. A first for me as i never knew the DDR used the Luger.
    It's a wasted trip baby. Nobody said nothing about locking horns with no Tigers.



    I'm Spartacus, not really i'm Paul!...

  3. #3

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    Seems it's true that the deact process has gotten even worse, then. I've started seeing SMG's pop up on the market with their receivers welded together, and pistols with unfilled holes drilled in their barrels. The process seems to differ on a dealer by dealer basis, though. The barrel on this one looks untouched from the outside. Even UK-spec pistols have a visible slot in the underside of the chamber end!

    Even if it's been thoroughly mechanically butchered, it remains a beautiful piece of firearms history. And you paid half the price I paid for mine. More than a bargain!

    B.B.
    "Don't worry about the bullets, I've got an umbrella". - Major Digby Tatham-Warter

  4. #4

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    It has always been the case for some years now Brodie, that SMG's are welded almost solid. For me though, the fact that the pistol does not go 'click' when you squeeze the trigger does not matter to me that much. I lost my interest in full bore shooting many years ago, and there was a time when guns were the tools of my trade - so to speak! Enjoy ownership without licence while you can!

    Cheers,
    Sreve

  5. #5

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    Quote by HARRY THE MOLE View Post
    It has always been the case for some years now Brodie, that SMG's are welded almost solid. For me though, the fact that the pistol does not go 'click' when you squeeze the trigger does not matter to me that much. I lost my interest in full bore shooting many years ago, and there was a time when guns were the tools of my trade - so to speak! Enjoy ownership without licence while you can!

    Cheers,
    Sreve
    I do own a couple of automatics that have been butchered in the way you've described. The lack of 'cock and click' function does not bother me either, as there's only so many times you can work the action on a non-functioning gun before it becomes tiresome. All of mine are used as wall hangers, so there was never any point in investing in any old spec deacts.

    I was referring to an MP40 that D&B currently has listed for sale. When I bought mine a year ago, I paid a hair over £2000 for it. They want £2500 for this one. Where you could previously split the receiver into two pieces, they have now prevented this by spot welding the two halves of the weapon together.

    Seems a little daft to me, to 'captivate' the weapon in such a way. Surely this makes the job of an officer of the law more difficult, as they'd want to take the weapon apart to ensure all of the internals have been properly decommissioned. If I was unfamiliar with the deactivation process, and was unable to take a weapon apart, it would make me rather nervous indeed. Especially in today's climate.

    Regardless of all this legalisative lunacy, you've found yourself a nice Luger. We can all still enjoy the history of these things, regardless of the amount of chopping and welding.

    Regards, B.B.
    "Don't worry about the bullets, I've got an umbrella". - Major Digby Tatham-Warter

  6. #6

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    East Germany used Lugers and an assortment of other ex Nazi pistols-they needed weapons and the Soviets weren't keen on giving them 1st line types (even though they had plenty of those post WW2)-the last German Luger production line ended up in the DDR at Suhl so refitting them was possible- they even had a bash at making new ones, but the machinery was worn out and workmanship was lacking on these examples-I bought a VoPo Luger a few months ago-it was last rebarreled in 1983 and stored away by the DDR awaiting WW III!

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    I had another look at the pistol today. There are West? German proofs on it, I was mistaken when I said 'East German proofs'. The proof mark is eagle over 'N' and not crown over 'N'. Maybe these proofs were added after reunification - I really cannot say. It also bears the Cologne proof mark, but there is also a Russian capture 'X' mark stamped at the front of the lower frame just below the serial number. With this being deactivated to the latest specs I cannot strip the gun to investigate further, but I believe that the VOPO mark was usually stamped behind the take down catch - and I cannot move that to check - unless I drill out the pin which has been inserted as part of the deactivation process. There is also the word 'Kett - or maybe 'Kott' stamped into the lower frame just below the take down catch. I have seen this stamped on other East Luger pistols. maybe it's chequered career is a bit more 'chequered' than I first realised!

    Cheers,
    Steve
    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.... 'A Salford Pal: Pte Thomas Jay.'

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    I have a Smith & Wesson Victory revolver that has 'eagle over N' proof markings, and I'm sure such a weapon would have been used in West Germany rather than the East. I might be wrong, but I can't imagine that East Germany would have employed many American weapons!

    It also has a relevant inventory marking on the grip strap.

    Interesting LugerInteresting Luger

    Hopefully this brings a little light to the matter of this very unusual Luger. Chequered though its past may be, it only adds to its history as an item. It walked a very long road before it came to rest in your collection.

    Regards, B.B.
    "Don't worry about the bullets, I've got an umbrella". - Major Digby Tatham-Warter

  9. #9

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    The problem is Brodie, that the Russian capture mark and re-finish would suggest this pistol being issued to East Germany. It might have picked up the later proof marks - this style still in use after reunification - some time later, perhaps when all such weapons were collected in when the NVA was disbanded. It is hard to say without proof either way, but nothing can be ruled out.

    Cheers,
    Steve
    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.... 'A Salford Pal: Pte Thomas Jay.'

  10. #10

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    A true mystery indeed, then. But one that adds to the pistol's intrigue, in my opinion. Sometimes sitting and speculating the 'what-ifs' is far more enjoyable than simply knowing the facts!

    B.B.
    "Don't worry about the bullets, I've got an umbrella". - Major Digby Tatham-Warter

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