Imperial German P.04 P04 Naval Luger 9mm Parabellum 6″ Semi-Auto Pistol C&R
SOLD FOR: $1777
Make: Imperial Germany (the specific manufacturer is unknown)
Model: P.04 Navy Luger, 1906 Variation
Year of Manufacture: Circa 1908-1914, C&R
Caliber: 9mm Luger
Action Type: Toggle-Action Semi-Automatic Striker-Fired Pistol fed by a Detachable Magazine with Grip-Saftey
Markings: The bottom of the barrel is marked “4”. The left side of the barrel is marked with a faded Imperial German Navy proof. The bottom of the chamber ring has some faded markings. The top of the chamber ring is marked “1918”. The left side of the slide is marked with the serial number “6333” which is not where P.04 Naval Lugers were normally serialized. The right side of the slide is marked with Imperial German proof marks. The firing pin is unmarked. The extractor, situated on the breechblock, is unmarked. The breechblock is unmarked. The top of the front toggle is marked with a crown above “ERFURT” (indicating the front toggle was made at the Imperial German Arsenal at Erfurt, but as the component appears to be force matched there is no way to be sure the rest of the gun was assembled at Erfurt), “33” (the 33 appears to be force matched) and has some Imperial proof marks including a crowned “RC”. The rear toggle is marked “100” ahead of the rear sight, when the sight is adjusted “200” and “33” at the rear end of the toggle. The receiver axle is not marked. The trigger side-plate is marked “33”. The trigger is marked “14”. The locking bolt is unmarked. The safety bar is unmarked. The front of the frame is marked “6333”, but the marking appears to be force matched and not original. The grip safety is marked “01” (the marking is visible when the left grip panel is removed).
Barrel Length: 6”
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 which in its default position is configured for firing at 100 meters and can be adjusted for fring at 200 meters.
Stock Configuration & Condition/ Grip: The grip panels are two-piece checkered wood. The grip panels have scattered light-moderate handling marks, nicks, compressions and scuffs. The wear is concentrated on the right panel. Notably, the right grip panel has a compression on the top front portion of the panel and a notable nick and scuff at the center of the panel. There are no chips or cracks. The checkering is mostly sharp. Overall, the grips are in Very Good condition.
Type of Finish: Blue and Straw
Finish Originality: Refinished
Bore Condition: The bore is semi-bright with mostly sharp rifling. There is erosion concentrated in the grooves.
Overall Condition: The pistol retains about 90% of its metal finish. There are some light handling marks, nicks and scuffs on the gun’s metal surfaces. Notably, there is some light finish loss around the leading edges, light wear on the muzzle and some light wear on the trigger side plate. Also, there is some light pitting visible under the blue finish on the breechblock and a few other small parts. A few markings are slightly faded, but most remain clear. The screwheads are unmarred and serviceable. Overall, the refinished pistol is in Very Good 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 single magazine that has a wood base. The magazine has some light handling wear and remains 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 is a Pistole P.04, 1906 variation Naval Luger which was manufactured sometime between 1908-1914. The gun has been force matched sometime after WWI with a frame that features the archaic grip safety which was removed from the P.04 when the 1908 variation of the pistol was introduced. The slide is marked with the date code 1918 (per Jan C. Still’s Imperial Lugers and Their Accessories the P.04 Naval Luger’s production ended in 1917) which indicates the gun was either refurbished that year in a German arsenal or reassembled from spare parts taken from several Lugers well after WWI ended. The front toggle is marked with an Erfurt Arsenal marking; it does not appear to be an original component. While this is not a P.04 Naval Luger in its original configuration, it is still a beautiful pistol nonetheless. It remains an aesthetically pleasing, ergonomic and mechanically sound handgun which is sure to impress. The two position rear sight and P.04 barrel add to the gun’s charm. This is a well constructed old pistol that Luger fans will not want to miss out on!