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Big Norm 02-13-2006 02:48 AM

Shocker HK Authentisicating
A long time ago I bought a 1936 and a 1937 HK. I was real proud to own two of these prizes even though I didn't really know a whole heck of a lot about them. At that time of my Luger collecting was growing, I was only interested in artillery Lugers and had not yet started my Navy Luger rampage. I eventually took my prizes to Doug Smith of FGS to have them verified and to brag a whole heck of a lot. He took (in my opinion) an extremely casual look at them and decreed that they were restored and maybe even faked. My heart sank, beyond past the ground level. To say that I got defensive would be an understatement. But I put the HK's into my drawer and proceeded to start accumulating navy Lugers.

Eventually, I recently bought a 'minty' P-code Luger that I was informed was authentic by an experienced seller whom I sorta trusted. Well 'minty' Lugers of any kind scare the dickens out of me. I usually want to see some character in my Lugers, which means that I want to see some normal, but light, wear after about 90 plus years of service. I have recently discovered that a gentleman that I knew had a great deal of experience with Lugers and so I asked him to look at my 1936 and 1937 and to give me an opinion. Because of my personal increased experiences in recent years with Lugers, in general, this also offered me an opportunity to re-examine these HK's since they had sat in my drawer for a number of years collecting antiquity (and moola value, I might add).

Well, I saw that all the proof marks and serial numbers had nice plumes around the edges. Appropriate markings stategically and appropriately placed serial numbers. And I was convinced that Doug Smith was dead, lower frontal extremity, wrong. But my insecurity about HK's told me to use my recently acquired source of a second opinion to secure my belief (or hopes, as it where) that my HK's were sound collectors pieces and that I would, in later years, be able to rip newbees off for humongous amounts of cash money and be able to afford to live in Pete Ebbinks neigborhood.

My expert informant poured himself a cup of coffee, put his feet on a table, picked his nose and adjusted his jewelers monocular microscope (he has one eye anyway) and carefully examined my prizes. I also poured myself a cup of coffee and co-mingled a few fresh finger nails clipping with the coffee in my mouth while I faked looking as calm as I could (it wasn't my house, so I couldn't put my feet on a table).

Well, he decreed that my 1936 was authentic and that the only thing that bothered him was that it looked too good. W-E-E-E-L-L, the coffee went down the sink and the Chivas Regal came out of my duffle bag. Halla Luya! Years of self doubt, insecurity and second quessing kinda evaporated

Now the 1937's turn to be examined. (OH! OH!) He's been examining the gun too long. The side plate comes off. Some rubbing around the frame edges. Shortly, he put the gun down an gave me that disgusted look. (Gulp, gulp, so much for that glass of Chivas Regal.). He said that the gun was messed with. The gun has a visible two digit serial number on the Thumb Safety Lever and on the Sear Bar Safety Lever. He said that the military HK's had the two digit serial number on the reverse side and he showed me my 1936 HK and that the two digit serial number on it were not visible. (I slowly added a pinch of more Chivas Regal to my glass...well, not really so slowly and my pinches are rather large). But, he said that the rest of the gun looked pretty good. Good plume around the edges of the proof marks, the serial numbers and everything else was where they was supposed to be. Again, like my 1936, it almost looked too good. Well, I slowly put my Chivas Regal back in my duffle bag and went home. While one of my HK's was good, the other wasn't. I was really feeling down. The gold metal was snatched from me and all I got is this silver thingy on a t-shirt. (Who remembers the second place finishers?)

I got home and poured a few more thingys of my Chivas Regal. I was in no condition to study my stocks on the stock market for last week out of Barrons magazine and I really didn't want to even turn on my computer. (I'm not driving any more tonight, so everything is OK.). So I picked up my Gibsons book 'The Krieghoff' and started just casually thumbing through it after I threw it against a wall. I somehow got to page 104 where the author talked about proof markings. (Whoa there Nellie!!!! The book says something else.). On the Sear Bar Safety Lever, this component is NOT numbered below 6,000 in the range. My serial number is 7617. (AH-H-H!! I'm gold! Here's your silver t-shirt back!). Where is my Red Wing, five gallon jug of Chivas Regal? :roflmao:

One more thing to check, the Thumb Safety Lever. Oh,oh! Confusion reigns its ugly head again. (Where is my jug of Chivas Regal?) :confused: The book says: "This part is un-numbered except for a few scattered examples in the 8,000 to 11,000 segment of the range.". :rolleyes: Well, I am pretty #?&# close to the lower end of this spectrum. (My emotionals are beginning to feel like a yoyo.). Is the authors vulgar extremities wrong? Were the BB's from his shotgun opinion aimed a triful bit high or am I just wishful thinking? So I submit this question to the people on this forum, whose monster intelligence is slightly better than mine. Its 4AM and I am going to bed while you all contemplate an answer to my query on this non fiction novel that I have written. ("you all", that is in case southern boys John Sabato (Va) or TomA (Ga) contemplate commenting). But first, I will put my feet on my desk (I m home now) and finish my humongous glass of adult something or other (waste not, want not... besides, its good stuff) before going haha. :rolleyes:
Big Norm :bigbye:

John Sabato 02-13-2006 08:01 AM

Norm, I am by no means an HK expert... I leave that stuff to John D. and Tom A, need to post photos when you wake up... and I hope you are not hung over... take an alka selzter... and don't get them confused... Derek Selzter you only take for NAVY Lugers :D

Navy 02-13-2006 09:28 AM

In the past month I have encountered 6 Kriegs FS; 2 were fake , one was a boosted finish and the other 3 were righteous guns. Of those 3, 1 was a minty P code, one a 1940 and 1 a 1938. Based on this recent and extensive sample, a "bougus quotient" of 50% can be determined. I surmise that the general market is NOT quite this bad, but who knows? You are either predator or prey in the Krieghoff game. I virtually always get a second opinion.
Tom A

Edward Tinker 02-13-2006 09:55 AM

Big Norm, I am writing this to you, so no one else will see it. I need a HK for my collection, and figure that right now a kreig restore is acceptable. I will give you top dollar (notice I said "dollar").

ooops, guess I posted this to the actual forum, how did I do that?????



Ron Smith 02-13-2006 10:25 AM

Norm, If you're afraid that your HK is bogus? Wait until you see Ed's" top dollar". :D

Rod WMG 02-13-2006 11:23 AM

Well, Norm, I thought your post was priceless. :D ;)

Good luck on finding the truth and I hope the news is all good.

Pete Ebbink 02-13-2006 11:24 AM

Hi Norm,

Might you bring these HK's to the SOS show...?

Big Norm 02-13-2006 07:02 PM

I thought about bringing a few guns to the SOS party. Especially since the vunerable (or is that venerable. What ever) Ron Wood will be at the same hotel that I will be at on Friday and Saturday night. But I keep thinking that to carry five HK's around two shows that have 2,000 tables just might make me one dead puppy. Then, if I decide to leave the guns at the hotel while walking around the show, there is the concern over hotel security. Remember, the price of these guns might make a sizable down payment on a mansion in your California neighborhood. I'll have to think about that one a bit more.

By the way, are you taking your own jet to the show or are you slumming by taking the corporate jet? :roflmao:
Big Norm :D

Pete Ebbink 02-13-2006 07:13 PM

Hi Norm,

Slumming for "free" on Southwest airlines...through their Rapid Rewards program (take 8 roundtrips and get 1 round trip, anywhere, for free...).

Maybe bring these two only in your back-pack...???

Big Norm 02-13-2006 07:15 PM

John Sabato,
you are 100% correct about the pictures. I looked at a Cannon DS400 at COMPUSA today for $400 and it had almost everything that I wanted on a camera. But the saleswoman was so smittened with my Polish, god-like, good looks and baby blue eyes that she told me that Cannon was coming out with a DS450 in about a month that would have a larger LCD on it for the same price. I took a picture of the mint mark on a quarter and it came out great. So I think it will be worth the wait.

Don't worry about the hangover. One of the advantantages of being retired is that I can shamelessly sleep off just about anything. :o
Big Norm :D

Big Norm 02-13-2006 08:13 PM

the decision on which of my five HK's would be a tough one to make. They are all so nice. If a restorer did a number on them, then he did a masterfull job. I would love to bring them all. But lets face it. The real purpose of going to Kentucky is to attend a large gun show that is reputed to be the best gun show this side of the Mississippi and to party with people whom I have talked with on this forum and through numerous e-mails. Especially YOU, since you are going to be there for only one day. I'll be staying at Exec West on Wed and Thursday, so help me make sure that we make contact.
Big Norm

Big Norm 02-13-2006 08:22 PM

Ron Smith,
not many people here caught onto my comment regarding a Red Wing five gallon jug of Chivas Regal. Now THAT lunch pail as a real big cork on it. (HEE! HEE!).
Big Norm

Big Norm 02-13-2006 08:36 PM

Eddy Tinker,
Geez, I send you a valuable, one of a kind artillery as a Christmas present and I thought that that would stun you so much that you would even get off of the police Lugers. You probably didn't even post it in the forum picture gallery. Now you want an HK. Your really shooting for the moon on this one. As Ron said, I am going to watch what kind of dollars that I get from you.
Big Norm

Big Norm 02-13-2006 08:53 PM

I couldn't agree with you more in regards to getting a disinterested, but knowlegable, third party to view ANY pricey collector quality Luger. So let me say to the newbies on this forum:

I once bought an original navy stock with Danzig ship yard markings on it and I was eager to find a 1906 navy with the same ship yard markings on it. I showed TomA one that I found at the Chantilly, Va gun show and after a brief discussion with Tom, I overcame my emotion and passed on this badly restored gun. I don't regret it for a moment and I am greatful to TomA for his recommendation. I was just too motivated by emotion to make an intelligent decision. It happens to everyone.
Big Norm

Edward Tinker 02-13-2006 09:05 PM


Originally posted by Big Norm
Eddy Tinker,
Geez, I send you a valuable, one of a kind artillery as a Christmas present and I thought that that would stun you so much that you would even get off of the police Lugers. You probably didn't even post it in the forum picture gallery. Now you want an HK. Your really shooting for the moon on this one. As Ron said, I am going to watch what kind of dollars that I get from you.
Big Norm

yup, I jest can be that way at times :p :roflmao: :p

But I was serious, I'd send you "a" dollar for one of them ;)

MauserLugers 02-13-2006 09:52 PM

I heard there was a "master" who had refinished something like 300 HK's over the last 60 years. His work is reported to be almost flawless. Trouble with all this is, very few really know what is correct and what isn't, as the guys doing the "restoring" also have the most knowledge. I'd trust Doug Smith's opinion when it came to finish. Also, almost mint condition is a red flag most of the time. ---- Bill

John Sabato 02-14-2006 11:34 AM

Jeez, Norm sent Ed Tinker a "one of a kind artillery" for Christmas and he didn't even send me a picture of one :D

A Belated and Blessed Merry Christmas Norm.

John D. 02-14-2006 09:26 PM

Hi Norm,

A great read..!! ;)

I'd suggest you get another opinion on both HKs.... It is interesting when someone discounts an HK based on something they "read" - rather than "research" for themselves...

If "reading" where the ultimate truth - I read an engineers report as to why it is impossible for a "bumble-bee" to fly. In spite of that - I'm pretty sure they do.

Please have you "friend" enlighten us exactly what markings are correct for what range of serialized HKs - as for me - I'm confused putting "hard-stops" on any serialized HKs.... But - what do I know??? I really don't read - I "research"....


John D.

Edward Tinker 02-14-2006 11:01 PM


Originally posted by John Sabato
Jeez, Norm sent Ed Tinker a "one of a kind artillery" for Christmas and he didn't even send me a picture of one :D

A Belated and Blessed Merry Christmas Norm.

Yes, I thanked him, but forgot to "publically" say so :D

Here is my newest arty!

Big Norm 02-15-2006 05:18 AM

I was hoping that you would post pictures so that John Sabato wouldn't get mad at us for not doing so. The glare on the guns picture makes it difficult for people on this forum to determine if this collector quality, rare, one-of-a-kind, taken off of a German general prisoner artillery during WW1, which was recently found in a deep cave hidden in a remote Russian area along with other historical artifacts, has been restored or not. I am currently negotiating a big dollar package deal with the seller for more artifacts which MAY include the actual capture papers for this customized weapon. (Opps, I just devulged my plans for your birthday present.). Please do not reveal the guns serial number to the public until I notify you that it is OK. The Russian KGB Historical Society (R-KGB-HS) is asking questions that may be embarrassing to agents who smuggled it out of that country at great risk to their lives. I am sure that, when the time comes, we will find that the gun is historically correct, aside from the obvious customizations that were factory ordered by that particular captured German general.
Big Norm

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