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Quite the Holy Grail Late War Pebbled Pigskin Soft Shell "Breakaway" Polizei P.08 Luger Holster!!!

Article about: Wow, this is a rarity, and I follow Luger holsters a little bit to see what's out there. Any "breakaway" Luger holster is somewhat rare, not very many made compared to the many tho

  1. #1

    Default Quite the Holy Grail Late War Pebbled Pigskin Soft Shell "Breakaway" Polizei P.08 Luger Holster!!!

    Wow, this is a rarity, and I follow Luger holsters a little bit to see what's out there. Any "breakaway" Luger holster is somewhat rare, not very many made compared to the many thousands of hardshell holsters made from WWI on...

    This is a seldom seen "breakaway" softshell holster, basically a P38 holster, but with quite unusual - as far as Third Reich holsters go - added butt protector and of course the P.08 tool pocket, pebbled finish, and the bonus is that it is made of pigskin (pigskin holsters are quite desirable!), the grain is unmistakable from the inside, and it well marked (which is rare for pebbled holster, often you can barely make out the markings), and it is Police!

    It is nicely marked clg44, maker; Ernst Melzig, Lederwaren, Breslauer Str. Liegnitz (Legnica), Polen. It is Polizei marked rather than Waffenampt stamped, so it was a late war issue for a gun that had been out of production for two years, the last of the WWII P.08 Luger pistols being the Mauser Oberndorf made byf 42 guns.* So that in itself also makes it interesting, as they were still making a few holsters for a gun in use but no longer in production.

    As this style of holster was late Third Reich Polizei issue (the early Polizei holsters are completely different, and were also different from Wermacht issue holsters), it's not surprising that these are sometimes seen with VOPO (East German Police) Lugers, and I think the holsters were still produced post war, because some of the VOPO Luger holsters had their own post war markings, not stamped over previous Third Reich markings. In fact, the only time anybody's ever really seen one of these holsters, me included is with a VOPO Luger. Here's a pic, courtesy of the internet.

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    The interesting thing about VOPO Lugers is that they can be anything from a 1914 Erfurt to a late war byf42, any and all still existing pistols were used, as well as P38's, etc. These actually have their niche with collectors, but as they were probably surplused out after the fall of the Soviet Union to raise cash, and even though they are a mix of WWI, Weimar and WWII manufactured guns, they are considered "post war" collector guns.

    You can see a couple holes in the flap, undoubtedly some cap eagle or death's head was put there by a GI, pretty common, and then taken off much later for whatever reason. You can see some pretty noticeable corrosion lines from the prongs over the years. At this point I wish it was still there although "true collectors" don't like to see this GI souvenir riffraff on the top flap of holsters, and it usually has a negative effect on value, as it is considered tampering (those GI guys didn't know anything about collecting like we do

    Anyway, rare holster. Excuse the tiny bit of blur, low light this afternoon, slow shutter speed, one handed 1/2 second exposures... holding a Wehrmacht issue boot knife in the other hand to hold the flap open. The leather is in great shape, and the musty smell of old militaria locked away in a trunk for decades better than any perfume ever made...

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    *Some Lugers were made by Krieghoff Suhl until much later in the war but these are rarities, and another subject altogether.
    Last edited by Larboard; 01-26-2016 at 08:18 AM.

  2. #2
    MAP
    MAP is online now
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    Default

    Interesting piece. Never seen one. Is it yours?

    One day I have to add a P.08 to my collection.
    "Please", Thank You" and proper manners appreciated

    My greatest fear is that one day I will die and my wife will sell my guns for what I told her I paid for them

    "Don't tell me these are investments if you never intend to sell anything" (Quote: Wife)

  3. #3

    Default

    Yes, the holster is mine. It's nice to fondle and admire a P.08 once in a while, nothing else looks or feels like it. Too finicky for a combat weapon (failed the US tests before we adopted the 1911, but Switzerland picked up right away and then Germany in 1908), but shooting it feels very natural, and as much poop as people talk about 9mm Parabellum as a round nowadays, there's a lot of people who are not around to discuss the point... Point your right finger (or left if you shoot that way) at something in the room, and sight down your finger, that's what holding and aiming the gun feels like. It "points" very naturally, feels like an extension of your hand.

    If you're amazed by finely tuned and beautifully executed mechanical things, the Luger can't be beat. The toggle action is a marvel, even to just look at, nevermind shooting it. Amazing really considering it not far descended from the Bortchart, seemingly one of the most ungainly looking pistols ever made, and they were many...

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by Larboard; 01-26-2016 at 08:33 AM.

  4. #4
    MAP
    MAP is online now
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    Nice pick up.

    I've held and shot a P08, just never owned one. Keep saying one day...but never follow thru. The bortchart is actually quite a revolutionary pistol but you can see why it was a dead end on the evolutionary tree.
    "Please", Thank You" and proper manners appreciated

    My greatest fear is that one day I will die and my wife will sell my guns for what I told her I paid for them

    "Don't tell me these are investments if you never intend to sell anything" (Quote: Wife)

  5. #5

    Default

    Shooting on is the icing on the cake, and unless the bore is in bad shape they are very accurate. But I think if I had to narrow it down to one pistol it would be the Hi Power. Or the 1911

  6. #6
    ?

    Cool

    Hi Power - NO "or" to it!
    I've carried an HP since 1969 in RVN. Wouldn't ever think about anything else!
    Sarge

  7. #7
    MAP
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    I'm partial to the 1911 commander sized. I just don't trust not seeing an exposed hammer. Never shot a high power but they have the best of both worlds.
    Last edited by MAP; 01-25-2016 at 08:47 PM.
    "Please", Thank You" and proper manners appreciated

    My greatest fear is that one day I will die and my wife will sell my guns for what I told her I paid for them

    "Don't tell me these are investments if you never intend to sell anything" (Quote: Wife)

  8. #8

    Default

    Sarge, I know what you're saying but it's still a really tough call... for me anyway.

    MAP, Agreed, I can't deal with a hammerless semi auto ;-(

    Or as I like to say, "I don't like plastic guns without a hammer or safety"

    The Hi Power is amazing to shoot, and it shoots what people consider "junk" ammo very well! Steel cased Tula, Brown Bear, etc. Not that I consider it junk ammo, to me it look like WWII German ammo, so I like the look and smell of it...
    Last edited by Larboard; 01-25-2016 at 07:33 PM.

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