SOLD FOR: $2025
Make: Deutsche Waffen-und Munitionsfabriken (DWM)
Model: Luger P.08 (Parabellum-Pistole)
Year of Manufacture: 1917, C&R
Caliber: 9mm Luger
Action Type: Toggle-Action Semi-Automatic Striker-Fired Pistol fed by a Detachable Magazine
Markings: The bottom of the barrel is marked with the serial number “2684”. The left side of the barrel is marked with a crowned “RC” and gothic character. The right side of the barrel is marked with a dove shaped proof. The top of the chamber ring is marked “1920 / 1917” (the date the gun was accepted for service with the Reichswehr above the gun’s date of manufcature). The left side of the slide is marked “2684”. The trigger bar is marked with a faded “66” and has a faded proof. The right side of the slide is marked with a few faded crowned gothic letters and a WWI-era DWM Army acceptance proof (please see photos). The left side of the breech-block is marked with a faded Imperial German Army Test Proof mark above “04”. The top of the extractor, situated on the top of the breech-block, is marked “04”. The top of the front toggle link is marked with the “DWM” logo and “04”. The rear end of the rear toggle link is marked “04”. The firing pin is marked “64”. The left side of the trigger is marked “04”. The safety bar is marked “84”. The front of the frame is marked with the serial number “2684” above a stylized “s”. The front of the trigger guard is marked with a crowned “RC” above a crowned gothic letter. The front strap is marked “8./J.R.3.35.” which is either an WWI-era Imperial German or interwar Reichswehr property stamp from an army unit. The concealed portions of the grip panels have faded marks.
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 refinished grip panels are two-piece checkered wood. The grip panels have light handling marks, nicks and scuffs. Notably, there is a small chip on the lower rear portion of the right panel. The checkering remains mostly sharp. Overall, the grip panels are in Very Good condition.
Type of Finish: Blue with Chrome parts
Finish Originality: Refinished
Bore Condition: The bore is grey with mostly sharp rifling. There is scattered light pitting and light erosion concentrated in the grooves.
Overall Condition: The pistol retains about 90% of its metal finish. There are a few scattered light handling marks, nicks and scuffs. Notably, the finish has worn off at the muzzle, some finish loss on the left side of the frame ahead of the trigger side-plate and on the trigger side-plate. Also there is some light wear on the back-strap and there is pitting visible under the new finish on the trigger. The markings remain clear. The screwheads have tool-marks but they remain 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 8-round magazine which is not original to the pistol. The magazine has WWII-era NSDAP markings on the left side “fxo”, an eagle above “37” and “P08”. Otherwise, the magazine has some light handling marks 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 particular Luger was manufactured originally in 1917 before being re-accepted for service during the Weimar-era in 1920 with the Reichswehr (this can be ascertained from the chamber ring markings). The Reichswehr was the post-WWI German military which had a number of restrictions placed upon it by the Versailles Treaty and it relied primarily on WWI-vintage equipment until Germany began to openly rearm following Hitler’s assumption of power in 1933. This handgun has almost entirely been refinished with a number of parts that are not serial matched (please see the markings section above) and a WWII-era NSDAP marked magazine which is not original to the handgun. This specimen retains the aesthetically pleasing appeal of a Luger while remaining both ergonomic and mechanically sound. This is a great option for fans of historical firearms. Good luck on your bid!