Sold For: $1,136.00
Make: Deutsche Waffen-und Munitionsfabriken (DWM) and Erfurt (the gun has been assembled from parts taken from multiple Lugers)
Model: Lange Pistole 08, Artillery Luger
Year of Manufacture: Ca. 1914, C&R
Caliber: 9mm Luger
Action Type: Semi-Automatic Pistol fed by a Detachable Magazine
Markings: The bottom of the barrel is marked “3963” and “8,82”. The bottom of the chamber ring has some stamps. The left side of the slide is marked “3963”. The trigger bar is marked “63” adjacent to a crowned gothic letter. The top of the chamber ring is marked “1914”. The left side of the barrel is marked with two crowned gothic letters which are faded. The right side of the slide is marked with three Gothic German letters under crowns and an Erfurt army test proof (an eagle). The firing pin is marked “01”. The left side of the breech-block is marked “01”. The extractor is marked “01”. The forward toggle is marked with the “DWM” logo and “01”. The rear toggle is marked “01”. The hold-open latch is marked “03” and has a crowned gothic letter. The locking bolt is marked “60” and has a crowned gothic letter. The trigger side-plate is marked “63” and has a crowned gothic letter. The trigger is marked “60”. The front of the frame is marked “8660” which is the serial number. The front of the trigger guard has a crowned gothic letter. The rear sight’s base is marked “63” and has a crowned gothic letter. The front sight is marked “63”. The wood base of the magazine is marked “1312”. The gun’s parts are not matching and it has been assembled with parts from various Lugers.
Barrel Length: Approximately 7.9” (200mm)
Sights/ Optics: The front sight is a serrated blade dovetailed to a serrated base. The rear sight is an adjustable tangent leaf “V”-notch. The rear sight is marked 1-8, inclusive.
Stock Configuration & Condition/ Grip: The grips are two-piece refinished checkered wood. The external potions of the grips have a new wood finish, but the concealed portions are still plain. The grips have some light handling marks, nicks and scuffs. Notably, there are scattered oil stains and scattered adhesive residue on the concealed portions of the grip panels. 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 sharp rifling. There is light-moderate erosion concentrated in the grooves.
Overall Condition: The pistol retains about 55% of its metal finish. There are some light handling marks, nicks and scuffs on the gun’s metal surfaces. Notably, the barrel is coated in light surface oxidation and has taken a patina color. There is light wear along the leading edges and some wear around the muzzle. The markings remain mostly clear, some have faded. The screwheads are only lightly tooled and remain serviceable. Overall, the pistol is in Very Good condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The slide has some light play on the frame. 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: The gun comes with a single magazine which is not serial matched (the marking is described above).
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.
In 1913 Kaiser Wilhelm II, the German Emperor, allowed for the adoption of the Lange Pistole 08 colloquially known as the “Artillery Luger”. The gun featured a longer barrel, 8-position tangent rear sight and shoulder stock. Although originally intended as a defensive armament for artillery crews, the Lange Pistole was used throughout the German military including as a carbine with a drum magazine by the famous Stoßtruppen (storm troopers) during WWI. Some surplus Lange Pistoles survived WWI and were eventually pressed into service during WWII, but not to the same extent as the gun had been used in the First World War.
This particular specimen has been refinished and assembled with parts taken from multiple Lugers. The pistol’s action was made by DWM, but the slide was made at Erfurt and we are unsure which arsenal made the frame. The gun lacks the provision to attach a butt-stock on the back-strap which should be present on a Lange Pistole, the frame does not match the slide and barrel’s serial number and many of the parts are not matching either. Despite this, the gun retains the ergonomic fit, pleasing aesthetic and mechanical prowess one would expect from a Luger. This is a great option for historical firearms collectors. Good luck on your bid!