Sold For: $3,175.00
Make: Fabrique Nationale
Model: P35 High Power WaA103 Variant
Serial Number: 65320
Year of Manufacture: 1941 (Page 327 of “FN Browning Pistols” by A. Vanderlinden) Approximately 27715 of this model were produced between April and December of 1941.
Caliber: 9mm Parabellum
Action Type: Single Action Semi-Auto with Removable Magazine
Markings: The left side of the slide is marked “FABRIQUE NATIONALE D’ARMES DE GUERRE / HERSTAL BELGIQUE” and “BROWNING’S PATENT DEPOSE”. The left side of the slide and frame are marked with an Eagle holding a globe with swastika (test proof) and an “Eagle / WaA103” Waffenamt military acceptance stamp. The right side of the frame, slide and barrel at the port are marked “65320”. The left front of the trigger guard is marked with a rectangular box. The right side of the barrel at the port is also marked with an Eagle holding a globe with swastika and there is another Eagle holding a globe with Swastika on the front of the slide under the muzzle. The left side of the barrel above the lug is marked with an “Eagle / WaA613” Waffenamt (as used on prior series pistols) and an “Eagle /WaA103” Waffenamt. The left side of the lug is marked with a circled “A”. The right side of the barrel is marked with an Eagle holding a globe with Swastika and “65320”. The acceptance stamps and proof marks appear somewhat crude and without the definition seen on other Browning High Power, Luger and P38 pistols used during the war. The changeover from WaA613 to WaA103 occurred at SN 65285, only 35 numbers away from that of this pistol, and it may be that new stamps of the correct style were not available at the time of the changeover. The right side of the barrel lug is marked with a boxed “Y” with the bottom leg of the box missing. The underside of the barrel in front of the lug is marked with a boxed “LT”.
Barrel Length: 4 ¾”
Sights / Optics: This pistol is mounted with a blade front sight dovetailed into the barrel that resembles an inverted “V” when viewed from the rear. The rear sight is a tangent ladder sight pinned into a boss in the top of the slide. The leaf has a “V” notch sight and the leaf is marked from “50” to “500”.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are checkered walnut with a lacquered finish in the smooth borders. There are a few shallow dings in the smooth borders of the left grip and a small drag line in the bottom shoulder of the right grip. The checkering shows light wear with moderate wear around the edges. There are a few tiny mars in the left grip. The grips rate in about Fine overall condition.
Type of Finish: The finish is blued.
Finish Originality: Most of the finish is consistent with a high polish pre-war blued finish (which is the correct finish for this pistol), with the slide markings applied before the finish and the proof and inspection marks applied later, through the finish.
Bore Condition: The bore is gray with light wear in the rifling. There is light erosion the length of the bore.
Overall Condition: This pistol retains about 88% of its metal finish. There is thinning on the edges of the slide and frame as well as on the front strap and backstrap. There is surface loss at the front edges of the slide with spots of pinprick surface erosion on the left front edge. There are a few light marks on the left side of the slide above the trigger, a spot of surface loss on the trigger guard and a light drag line on the underside of the frame in front of the trigger guard. The slide serrations on the right side show light to moderate wear in the edges of the serrations. The right grip screw shows light marks from a screwdriver. The markings are clear except for the inspection mark on the left side of the trigger guard, which is only partially visible. Overall, this pistol rates in about Very Good to Fine condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The pistol has a magazine disconnect as well has a frame mounted manual safety. The slide is tight to the frame and the trigger has a small amount of creep. We have not fired this pistol.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: This pistol comes with two 13 round magazines with aluminum followers and a brown leather flap holster. The magazines have a black parkerized finish with a blued floorplate. The magazine in the pistol is marked on its lower spine with an “Eagle / WaA103”. It shows spots of thinning in its finish and thinning on the edges of the floorplate. The magazine is in about Very Good to Fine condition. The spare magazine is marked with an “Eagle /WaA103” and an “S” on lower spine. The magazine shows a few spots of light thinning in its body and on the edges of its floorplate. The floorplate also shows a few tiny spots of light surface frosting. The magazine is in about Very Good condition. The high capacity magazines will not be provided to a California resident or to a resident of any state with magazine capacity restrictions. The outside of the holster under its retaining strap is marked with “jor / 41” and with an ”Eagle / WaA920” Waffenamt, indicating it was made by A. Muzik of Wien in 1941. The holster is identical to the one shown on page 201 of “German Pistols and Holsters 1934-1941” except for the manufacturer’s code. The front of the holster is folded over and sewn to the rear edge to form the body of the holster. There is a magazine pouch sewn to the outside of the holster and the back of the holster was folded over to form the top flap. The flap has a steel stud riveted to it for securing to a strap sewn to a 2nd flap, sewn to the back of the holster and folded over its rear edge to cover the trigger guard of the pistol. There is a single belt loop sewn to the back side of the holster. The stitching is intact with no cracks in the leather noted. There are several scratches and scuff marks in the outside of the holster at the muzzle, several more in the magazine pouch, a few light marks in the top flap and several more marks in the back side of the holster. There is also finish loss with oil staining on the back side of the holster at the muzzle. The holster is in about Very Good to Fine overall condition.
Our Assessment: The Browning High Power pistol is based on a design by American firearms inventor John Browning, and completed by Dieudonné Saive at Fabrique Nationale. Browning died in 1926, several years before the design was finalized. The Hi-Power is one of the most widely utilized military pistols in history, having been used by the armed forces of over 50 countries. The Hi Power name didn’t refer to the cartridge, but to its 13 round magazine, holding five more than the Luger and six more than the Colt 1911. Its high magazine capacity and ergonomic grip frame have made it a favorite among civilian shooters as a carry pistol and for home defense. The High Power was adopted by the Belgian military and the early pistols were equipped with a tangent rear sight and a grip that was slotted for a wooden stock. When Germany invaded Belgium, they took over the FN plant and continued making the High Power, but soon dropped the grooved grip after stocks of pre-invasion parts were used-up. Guns made with tangent sights included WaA613, WaA103 and WaA140 inspection marks before the tangent sights were replaced with fixed sights to help increase production. This pistol was made in 1941 and is one of the first 35 pistols made with the WaA103 inspection mark. The pistol has matching serial numbers on the barrel, slide and frame and the inspection marks and proofs are sharp and clear. The pistol is in about Very Good to Fine condition with 88% of its finish remaining. The bore is gray with light wear in the rifling and light erosion the length of the bore. The pistol comes with a brown leather top flap holster made by A. Muzik of Wien in 1941 and with two period magazines with aluminum followers, both of which are marked with the WaA103 Waffenamt. This package will make a great addition to a collection of Browning or FN pistols, and will also be of interest to collectors of WWII German weapons.