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Unread 07-13-2010, 12:23 PM   #1
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Default DWM 7.65 Luger WWI bringback

Hello everyone,

I have recently inherited a WWI Luger. It is a 7.65mm with a 3" barrel (length of cylindrical section). It has an upright Crown N proof on the left side of the chamber and a sideways Crown N on the left side of the extractor. It also has a Crown N on the underside of the barrel. Thumb safety reads "Gesichert." Extractor reads "Geladen" on both sides. There is no grip safety. Fixed V-slot sight. There is a stock lug.

Serial number is 8318 on the barrel and frame. Below both serial numbers is what looks like a cursive letter "O."

I'm trying to identify which model this is. My Great Uncle Howard brought it back from WWI.

Sorry about the picture quality. I may be able to get ahold of a better camera, if needed.

Thanks a lot!
michael
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Last edited by vesuv; 07-13-2010 at 06:25 PM.
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Unread 07-13-2010, 12:44 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum, and I think you'd prefer honesty to me walking on eggshells?

Well, it is not possible that it is a bring back, as the crown N signifies commericial production, and the "germany" stamping shows that it was imported to the USA after the 1920's. Although WW1 guns were refurbished, I would expect this to be made in the mid 1920's (o suffix) and WW1 lugers were in 9mm.

The grips are not standard and the color doesn't look right?


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Unread 07-13-2010, 12:54 PM   #3
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Thanks Ed. So much for family legends. We've always thought Uncle Howard brought it back, but he passed away in the 1970s.

There is no "Germany" stamp on the gun that I can find. Where should I look?

The grip is really worn down, but a checkerboard pattern is still vaguely visible.

The bluing is at least half gone and the metal has light pitting on the barrel.

Any idea on a value?

Thanks,
michael
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Unread 07-13-2010, 01:04 PM   #4
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Sorry, my eyes thought you wrote germany.

If no germany, then it was for the commericial market.

A picture of the front of the frame so we can see the suffix would help.

I've seen this gray from being in the attic for many years on some lugers and nambu's.

Family legends sometimes are because they had one from the war and it got stolen or something and they buy another and the two stories get mixed...

I'd say the value is probably $500-$600?


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Unread 07-13-2010, 06:27 PM   #5
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Hello again,

I've uploaded two more pictures to the original post. Here you can see the serial number and what appears to be a cursive "O."

Can we determine anything from the serial number? And what does that "O" tell us?

thanks,
michael
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Unread 07-13-2010, 08:18 PM   #6
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Assuming this is a DWM, the vertical C/N proof on the left side of the receiver, commercial numbering of small parts, "o" suffix and serial number in the 8000's make this a commercial Alphabet DWM manufactured in early 1926 per Jan Still's Weimar Lugers, p. 15.
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Unread 07-13-2010, 08:48 PM   #7
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Thanks a lot Don. Yes, the toggle does bear the DWM inscription.

Based on Aarron Davis's "The Luger Handbook," I had been thinking perhaps it's a 1906 Commercial or Navy model (which is why I chose this forum). They apparently also had serials in the 8000s.

Does the short and squatty crown mean anything? It seems like most of the pictures I've seen bear a taller, more slender crown than mine.

thanks,
michael
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Unread 07-13-2010, 10:34 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vesuv View Post
...

Based on Aarron Davis's "The Luger Handbook," I had been thinking perhaps it's a 1906 Commercial or Navy model (which is why I chose this forum). They apparently also had serials in the 8000s.

Does the short and squatty crown mean anything? It seems like most of the pictures I've seen bear a taller, more slender crown than mine.

thanks,
michael
No, it is what me and Don said it was.

I think you are talking about the crown on the barrel, I think its just because the barrel was harder to strike than the side of the receiver, but the crown looks normal to me. Something to keep in mind is that the proof and acceptance dies were eing struck numerous times and they broke or chipped and would be replaced; they are very small and it is easy to have them just a bit different from each other (even tho they are supposed to be exactly alike)


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Unread 07-13-2010, 11:15 PM   #9
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Hey I just wanna say thanks for taking the time for this discussion. It's very interesting to learn about this historical gun.

I haven't really decided whether to keep or sell this family heirloom, but what do you think it might be worth if it is the Weimar era model?

On a side note, I spent a year working as an English teacher in Suhl back in the early 1990s. I always heard about the great gun-making tradition there. Indeed, the local gun museum was a delight.

By the way, I do German-English translation if you ever need any historical items translated: hardyinternational.com.

I'm very intrigued by this Luger that fell in my lap. Thanks again for the help...
michael
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Unread 07-14-2010, 01:02 AM   #10
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Michael
Enjoy your luger. I caution you on using Arron Davis's book. It has several errors. There are several better reference books. You have been given correct information from Don and Ed. Welcome to the forum. Bill
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Unread 07-14-2010, 08:30 AM   #11
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Do you plan to fire it?
I find these Lugers to be fun to shoot. Very little recoil and accurate.
The pistol still seems to be important to the family. I would keep it and shoot it. The Luger looks nice to me and besides it is still a Luger. They are not making any more.
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Unread 07-14-2010, 09:15 AM   #12
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Thanks for the heads-up on the Davis book. What kind of problems have you found with it?

I hadn't considered actually firing it. I am amazed at how balanced and ergonomic it feels in the hand. I'm sure that would be interesting. Would firing it affect the value at all?

I wish I could nail down the history of this thing. If it's not a bringback, I have no idea where the hell it came from. Judging from the wear on the grip, it had a long and active service life. What would Uncle Howard in Cleveland, Okla. be doing with a Weimar-era Luger? I suppose I'll never know for sure.
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Unread 07-14-2010, 09:33 AM   #13
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Lugers were always recognized as well made premium firearms.

There were several mail order companies on the East and West coasts and in Chicago that sold imported Lugers.

If there is no "Germany" or "Made in Germany" stamp anywhere on the gun, it was probably purchased outside the USA. I know that Lugers were brought into Mexico. Perhaps this came up from there.

The website "The land of Borschardt" has scans of several of these catalog pages.

http://www.landofborchardt.com/

Whether you keep or sell your gun, I'll warn you that Lugers are addictive!

Marc
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Unread 07-14-2010, 09:43 AM   #14
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There's no "Germany" anywhere on this one - which deepens the mystery even further. I somehow doubt that it came in from Mexico, since several relatives in my family served overseas in Europe in both WWI and WWII.

Is everyone in agreement that this is a Post-WWI model? Is there any chance that it is pre-WWI?

The most reputable gun dealer I could find here in Austin thought it was an early 1900s model.
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Unread 07-14-2010, 10:05 AM   #15
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Most probably made well after WW1. GI's brought home plenty of Lugers including .30 cal models so it's probably a WW2 bringback. Neat souvenier.

Charlie
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