SOLD FOR: $1000
Make: Fabryka Broni (Arms Factory), in Radom, Poland
Model: VIS 35 (Vis is Latin for “force”) Grade II, Subvariation 1/2 (“Axis Pistols”, Vol. II, by Jan Still)
Serial Number: M1966
Year of Manufacture: Ca. 1942-1944
Caliber: 9mm Parabellum
Action Type: Single Action Semi-Auto Pistol with Removable Magazine
Markings: The left side of the slide is marked “F. B. RADOM VIS Mod.35. Pat. Nr.15567. / “P.35(P)””, “18”, eagle clutching swastika, eagle over “623” and eagle over “77”. The left of frame has an eagle over “WaA77” waffenamt. The bottom of the slide is marked “N1166”. The right side of the frame is marked “M1966” and with an eagle over “77” marking, the right of the slide is marked “1966” behind the ejection port and the barrel’s chamber is marked “1966”. The left of the barrel lug is marked “919” and with eagle clutching swastika, the right of the lug is marked with eagle over “623” and an upside-down “3”. There are some other scattered inspection marks we don’t recognize. The magazine spine is hand-scribed “1966”. The bottom of the trigger guard is import-marked “C.A.I. ST. ALB. ?? / 9MM POLAN?”.
Barrel Length: 4 5/8”
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a short narrow blade integral to the rib on the slide. The rear sight is a “V” notch dovetailed into the slide. There is a thin narrow rib running down the center of the entire length of the slide with fine checkering for glare reduction.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are two-piece checkered black plastic grips with “FB” in triangle on the left, “VIS” in triangle on the right. The grips show light wear with scattered light nicks, scuffs and scratches. The checkering is well defined. There are no chips or cracks. Overall, the grips are in about Very Good-plus condition.
Type of Finish: Blued
Finish Originality: Refinished. Based on markings, it is likely that the slide and barrel are replacements which have been force-matched to the frame.
Bore Condition: The bore is gray with worn, but visible rifling. There is light erosion in the lands and moderate erosion in the grooves.
Overall Condition: This handgun retains about 96% of its current metal finish. The finish is generally strong with thinning at a few edges and some scattered minor discoloration. There are some scattered nicks and minor erosion under the finish. There is infrequent minor surface oxidation. The action shows light operational wear. The markings range from clear to worn and poorly struck. Overall, this pistol is in about Good-Very Good condition as refinished.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The trigger is crisp and the slide has light play to the frame. There is a de-cocker on the slide and a grip safety. The frame has a lock lever for takedown. We did not fire this handgun. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: This pistol comes with a single eight round magazine. The magazine has minor operational wear, some scattered surface erosion under the finish, the feed lips are intact and the spring is strong, in about Very Good condition as refinished. Also included is a brown leather flap-holster which has light wear, some spots of discoloration, and intact stitching, in Very Good condition.
Our Assessment: This is a Fabryka Broni Radom VIS 1935 Grade II pistol made in about 1942-1944 during WWII under German occupation before manufacture was moved to Steyr in Austria in late 1944. It appears to have a sub-variation 1 frame which has had a sub-variation 2 slide fitted to it. The design of the pistol was roughly based on John Browning’s M1911 with a slide release, de-cocker and grip safety. The VIS was designed for the Polish Army, but only saw a few years of service before Poland was occupied by Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia. After the war, the Russians forced the Poles to adopt the Soviet TT-33 Tokarev even though the Tokarev was considered inferior in both ergonomics and reliability, and the VIS was no longer produced. This pistol was made during Nazi occupation for use by German forces. The pistol is in about Good-Very Good condition with about 96% of its new finish remaining. This should be of interest to collectors of Polish firearms and of German weaponry used during WWII. Please see our photos and good luck!