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Need Help with ID of WWI German Signal Pistol?

Article about: Can anyone give me any information on what I believe this to be a WWI era German signal or line throwing gun? Barrel and frame are Crown U proofed and there are no other markings. This is a

  1. #1
    mactec
    ?

    Question Need Help with ID of WWI German Signal / Line-Throwing Gun?

    Can anyone give me any information on what I believe this to be a WWI era German signal or line throwing gun? Barrel and frame are Crown U proofed and there are no other markings. This is a WWII battlefield pickup / bringback. Barrel is slightly less than 3" long and bore measures 12mm. I'm now thinking that a line-throwing device may have attached to this gun due to appearance and caliber.
    --Thank you.



    Last edited by mactec; 08-30-2008 at 09:40 PM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Need Help with ID of WWI German Signal Pistol?

    Line throwing guns I have seen have been larger caliber affairs with extended muzzles, larger pistol grip and stabilizing grip under the muzzle. Yours appears to be a small caliber commercial device for shooting a defensive tear gas cartridge or emergency flare. I will check on older Geman sporting goods catalog I have for anything similar.

  3. #3
    mactec
    ?

    Default Re: Need Help with ID of WWI German Signal Pistol?

    Quote by Poloberst View Post
    Line throwing guns I have seen have been larger caliber affairs with extended muzzles, larger pistol grip and stabilizing grip under the muzzle. Yours appears to be a small caliber commercial device for shooting a defensive tear gas cartridge or emergency flare. I will check on older Geman sporting goods catalog I have for anything similar.
    Thank you for the reply...I'll appreciate any info you might find.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Need Help with ID of WWI German Signal Pistol?

    I found a match for your little pistol: Betäubungs-Pistole. These were self-defense weapons popular in the 1920s for pedestrians or bicyclists. Discharging the 12mm cartridge that looked like a shotgun shell was intended to stun an assailant. The small pistols were permit free- Waffenscheinfrei.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  5. #5
    mactec
    ?

    Default Re: Need Help with ID of WWI German Signal Pistol?

    Quote by Poloberst View Post
    I found a match for your little pistol: Betäubungs-Pistole. These were self-defense weapons popular in the 1920s for pedestrians or bicyclists. Discharging the 12mm cartridge that looked like a shotgun shell was intended to stun an assailant. The small pistols were permit free- Waffenscheinfrei.

    Outstanding! Thanks so much for the ID...might I ask if you found this in a reference book, or period catalog? Do these weapons have any collector value?

  6. #6

    Default Re: Need Help with ID of WWI German Signal Pistol?

    This image is from a period catalog in my archive. I can't imagine any collector value, aside from a novelty item. But they buy anything on auctions.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Need Help with ID of WWI German Signal Pistol?

    SCHEINTOD (Apperance of Death) These 12mm German Gas Ctgs were made in pre World War 1 and Post War Germany.. They are not lethal and loaded with a mixture of red pepper and other eye, nose and mouth irritant.. Enjoy these rather unique Ctgs.. Many of the pistols were adorned with death heads, and dancing skeletons, to give a scary effect...BILL
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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    "As long as there are brave men and warriors the halls of Valhalla will never be silent or empty"

    In memory of my father William T. Grist December 26, 1920--September 10, 2009..
    901st. Ordnance H.A.M. North Africa, Italy, Southern France....ETO
    Also in memory of my mother Jane Kidd Grist Feb. 22, 1920-- September 27, 2009... WWll War bride May 1942...

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Need Help with ID of WWI German Signal Pistol?

    Interesting little pistol also called scheintot pistole (appears deadly) and entlarvt (startle) pistole as well as betäubungs pistole. They were made is 8mm and 12mm. There is growing interest in less than lethal firearms but I have not idea the value either. (not in the Broomhandle/Luger class)

    There were startle, tear gas, stun and flare ctgs for them. They were made in single shot, revolver and 3 barrel versions. There is one American made version by Van Karner in 60 caliber and is the only gun I know of to shoot this caliber.

    Very interesting, thanks for posting. If you want to see more examples there is an article "Scheintot Pistols" in "Gun Collector Digest" from about the 1980s. I can look it up if you want the exact edition. It is the best article on them I have seen.

    Poloberst, Thanks for the picture. Can you tell me which catalog it came from? Are there any other pictures of them?

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Need Help with ID of WWI German Signal Pistol?

    You beat me by a few seconds Bill. I forgot you had one.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Need Help with ID of WWI German Signal Pistol?

    Copdoc, the photo is from the 1929 Akah catalog. There are others but I chose this one as it matched the subject pistol so well.

    As an aside, judging from your comment "There is one American made version by Van Karner in 60 caliber and is the only gun I know of to shoot this caliber.", I suppose you had not heard of the US 60 caliber machine gun that was developed in WWII in St. Louis? Or were you referring only to similar Scheintot guns?

    Joe

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