SOLD FOR: $3225
Make: Mauser (byf)
Model: Parabellum-Pistole, Luger Model P.08
Year of Manufacture: 1941, C&R
Caliber: 9mm Luger
Action Type: Toggle-Action Semi-Automatic Striker-Fired Pistol fed by Detachable Magazines
Markings: The bottom of the barrel is marked “4442 / 883”. The bottom of the chamber ring is marked “M”. The right side of the barrel is marked with a NSDAP eagle clutching a swastika which was an army test proof. The top of the receiver is marked “41” which was the date of manufacture. The right side of the receiver is marked with two Eagle over 655 NSDAP waffenamts which indicate the pistol was made by Mauser and an NSDAP eagle clutching a swastika (army test proof). The top of the extractor situated on the breechblock is marked “42”, the left side of the breechblock features a NSDAP eagle clutching a swastika and the breechblock is marked “42” (the breechblock serial number is only visible when the pistol is taken down). The top of the front toggle link is marked “byf” which was a Mauser production code and a struck out “42”. The rear end of the rear toggle link is marked “42”. The Trigger side-plate is marked “42”. The locking bolt is marked “42”. The safety bar is marked “42”. The left side of the trigger, concealed by the slide, is marked “42”. The receiver axle is marked “42”. The firing pin is marked “42”. The left grip-strap is marked with some faded marks. The right grip-strap has some faded marks. The front of the receiver is marked “4442” above “Z”. The concealed portion of the grip panels are both marked with a NSDAP-era eagle above 655 waffenamt which indicate they were made by Mauser.
Barrel Length: 4”
Sights/ Optics: The front sight is serrated blade fixed to a banded base fixed to the muzzle. The rear sight is a “V”-notch integral to the rear toggle link.
Stock Configuration & Condition/ Grip: The grip panels are two-piece checkered wood. The grip panels have light handling marks, nicks and scuffs. Notably, the panels have some scattered patches of black discoloration on the panels. The checkering remains mostly sharp. There are no chips or cracks. Overall, the grips are in Very Good condition.
Type of Finish: Blue
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is mostly bright with sharp rifling. There is some very light erosion concentrated in the grooves.
Overall Condition: The pistol retains about 85% of its metal finish. There are scattered light handling marks, nicks and scuffs on the gun’s metal surfaces. Notably, there is finish loss along the leading edges and some light wear around the muzzle. The markings remain clear. The screw-heads are unmarred and serviceable. Overall, the pistol is in Very Good plus condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. There is barely palpable play between the barrel assembly and frame. We did not fire this pistol. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance requirements.
Box Paperwork and Accessories: The pistol comes with a total of three magazines. None of the magazines are serial matched to the pistol. Overall, the magazines are all in Very Good condition.
Our Assessment: The Parabellum-Pistole 1908, commonly referred to as the Luger, was designed by Georg Johann Luger. Luger was an unlikely gun designer, born in 1849 he was the son of a surgeon, Bartholomaeus von Luger, and while attending university he served as a One-Year Volunteer with the 78th Infantry Regiment (Infanterieregiment 78 ein) of the Austro-Hungarian Army. While in the military Luger proved himself a skilled marksman and he began to develop an interest in the small arms technology. Following four years of service Luger worked a number of jobs in Vienna. Finally, in the 1870s Luger met Ferdinand Ritter von Mannlicher who recruited him as a sales representative for Deutsche Waffen und Munitionsfabrik AG (DWM). One of the company’s weapons that Luger marketed was the Borchardt C93 (named after its designer Hugo Borchardt) which was criticized for being too heavy and poorly balanced. Luger decided to rework the design and eventually secured a contract for his new pistol with the Swiss Army which dubbed it the model 1900 which was chambered for 7.65mm Parabellum cartridges. After some minor reworking Luger introduced the Pistole 1904, chambered for 9mm cartridges, which was adopted by the Imperial German Navy, the pistol was henceforth referred to as the Luger. A slightly altered version of the pistol with a smaller barrel was adopted for service by the Prussian Army in 1908, hence the designation P08. The P08 would become one of the most iconic weapons of the 20th century. Following the end of WWI Luger was bankrupted, he had invested in War Bonds which had become worthless following Imperial Germany’s defeat and worse yet he was forced out of his job by his employer DWM which sought to appropriate his patents. The ensuing legal dispute between Luger and DWM would be decided in his favor in 1922, but he was financially ruined by that time and passed away the following year at the age of 74. His pistol would continue to serve the German military during WWII (although the P38 was the Wehrmacht’s standard issue sidearm) and saw service in a number military and police forces after the war.
This particular Luger was manufactured in 1941 two years into the Second World War. It would prove to be the most decisive year of the conflict, on June 22nd, 1941 a German led coalition invaded the Soviet Union and initially made massive inroads into Soviet territory. The Red Army took massive losses in the early months of the invasion, millions of Soviet soldiers were taken prisoner (where they would be starved to death by their captors) and the German military appeared poised to capture Moscow by the end of the year. What Hitler and his High Command had not foreseen was a massive Soviet counteroffensive. On December 5th, under the leadership of General Giorgy Konstantinovich Zhukov, Red Army units which had been stationed in the Far-Eastern portions of the Soviet Union were transferred to Moscow and launched a masterful counterstroke which repulsed the German advance and secured the imperiled capital of the Soviet Union. Also, following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Germany declared war on the United States which only further complicated Germany’s position. The pistol’s markings are consistent with army issued small arms manufactured in 1941. From April of 1940 German companies were ordered to mark war material with codes instead of using their names. This was done to prevent the enemy from ascertaining information about German production from captured equipment. Mauser used the code “byf” on its output from that point until the end of the conflict. Despite some light handling wear the gun remains aesthetically pleasing and it is both an ergonomic and mechanically sound option. Aside from the magazines, the gun appears to be in its original configuration as all the parts are serial matched. If you are a fan of German military arms and WWII history then this is the handgun for you. Good luck on your bid!