SOLD FOR: $2226
Make: Mauser (byf)
Model: Luger P.08, P08
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 chamber ring is marked with several faded letters. The top of the receiver is marked “41” which was the date of manufacture for the component. The right side of the slide is marked with two Eagle over “135” 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 “31”, the left side of the breechblock features a NSDAP eagle clutching a swastika and the breechblock is marked “31” (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 “31”. The rear end of the back toggle link is marked “31”. The left side of the slide is marked “2231”. The Trigger side-plate is marked “31” on the outside and the concealed portion is marked “28”. The locking bolt is marked “31”. The safety bar is marked “31”. The left side of the trigger is marked “31”. The receiver axle is marked “31”. The firing pin is marked “31”. 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 “2231” above “a”.
Barrel Length: 6” on the installed barrel which is not original to the handgun. The original barrel which is also included is 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 black synthetic with smooth borders. The grips have some light handling marks, nicks and scuffs. The checkering remains mostly sharp. Overall, the grips are in Very Good condition.
Type of Finish: Blued
Finish Originality: Refinished
Bore Condition: On the installed barrel the bore is mostly bright with sharp rifling. There are a few trace spots of stubborn fouling in the bore.
The original 4” barrel’s bore is grey and has mostly sharp rifling. There is light-moderate erosion concentrated in the grooves.
Overall Condition: The refinished pistol retains about 80% of its metal finish. There are some light handling marks, nicks and scuffs. Notably, the finish has worn off the leading edges of the frame and action, but the barrel is still nicely preserved. Also, the finish has largely worn off the grip straps. The markings remain clear. The screwheads are only lightly tooled and remain serviceable. Overall, the pistol is in Very Good condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. We have not fired this pistol. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance requirements.
Box Paperwork and Accessories: There is a single magazine included with the handgun which is not serial matched. The bottom of the magazine is marked “9977 / u / +” above a NSDAP-style waffenamt above “63”. Also, a standard 4” original P.08 barrel is included with tha handgun (it is currently not installed). The barrel is marked “2231 / 8,81” on the bottom and features an eagle clutching a swastika on the right side. There is finish loss on the barrel, concentrated on the left side. The original bore is non-functioning per the cosigner and is in poor condition overall.
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 specimen, despite having an aftermarket barrel installed, comes with its original 4” barrel and all the components are serial matched with the exception of the magazine and grips (the grips may be original but we can not confirm this). Mauser used the code “byf” on its output beginning in early 1941 and continued to use that code until the end of WWII, which aligns with the waffenamts and date code on the slide. 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. Despite some light handling wear the gun remains aesthetically pleasing and it is both an ergonomic and mechanically sound option. If you are a fan of German military arms and WWII history then this is the handgun for you. Good luck on your bid!