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Unread 01-22-2020, 11:13 AM   #1
Fletch756
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Default Luger identification help

I recently obtained a few Luger's and need a little help. I'm new to Luger ownership and find them fascinating. This particular gun has very few markings on it. I believe the barrel length is 3 1/2 inches. The only numbers I found, both inside and out is "20" and "2". Thanks in advance for your expertise.
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Unread 01-22-2020, 02:56 PM   #2
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This one looks like a 20's commercial Luger that has been heavily buffed and re-blued, IMO. Missing lots of markings that should be there such as numbers on the rear toggle pin or an easily identifiable Crown over N proof mark on the right side of the reciever. Small parts on a DWM such as the locking bolt, ejector, and safety lever should be strawed, or at least not blued like the rest of the pistol.
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Unread 01-22-2020, 02:59 PM   #3
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This Luger appears to me as though someone removed the serial # from the front of the frame, and off of the underside of the barrel. I would be a bit suspicious of this one. JMHO
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Unread 01-22-2020, 05:40 PM   #4
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It's probably chambered for a 7.62 (not a 9mm).
Without a serial number, you certainly would have trouble selling it or transferring it.
So, it's greatly diminished in value.
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Unread 01-22-2020, 07:27 PM   #5
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OK thanks for the info. it was an estate auction gun so maybe just a shooter. It was really baffling me with so little identifying marks.
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Unread 01-22-2020, 07:54 PM   #6
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So I looked at it under a magnifying glass and saw that the trigger sideplate says "20" on it as well. the 2 is faded but barely there. It also says "20" under the barrel. There doesn't appear to be any room for additional numbers where the 20 is. But again I don't know much about them.
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Unread 01-22-2020, 07:55 PM   #7
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Unread 01-23-2020, 01:49 PM   #8
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The original numbers and acceptance stamps are often lost when a Luger is heavily buffed, which often happened before they were refinished. It's hard to tell from your photos, but I think that might explain why the remaining numbers are so hard to make out.

Lugers parts are notorious for their distinctive marks. It is possible that some of the parts are unmarked after market replacements, too.

I have seen a few guns that soldiers assembled from parts they collected. Usually, those guns don't work well, because despite having identical parts, they almost always need the fine fitting that only an experienced gunsmith can do.

The "2" and "0" in the front of the frame in your last picture look like they were added and it is not how the factory would have marked the gun.
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Unread 01-23-2020, 01:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletch756 View Post
additional photo


Looking at this photo, I fear that someone has altered the serial numbers. IF the serial # were originally "20", the numbers would be much closer together. I don't think that this was done with a buffer, but I could be wrong.
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Unread 01-23-2020, 07:30 PM   #10
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Thank you both very much. I will see how it shoots. Maybe I got lucky and all the parts work
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Unread 01-25-2020, 09:22 AM   #11
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There is very little question that the legal frame serial number of this Luger has been removed and altered.

It might become important for you to be able to prove that you are not the one that did this. It is a Federal crime to alter the serial number of firearms.

Make sure you have documentation that the gun was in this state when you acquired it, including a receipt from any FFL that was involved in the transfer.

If you bought it directly from the estate as a private transfer, make sure you have a receipt showing the serial number of the gun at that time.
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Unread 01-25-2020, 10:19 AM   #12
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Can you give us a bunch of clear close-ups of that frame in front of the trigger guard? Also 1 or 3 side shots of that same area with the gun assembled.
Thanks;
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Unread 01-26-2020, 09:34 PM   #13
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Is this what you are talking about David. It just seems strange that the number 20 is in 3 different places. It shoots very nice as well. Thank you all for your opinions.
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Unread 01-26-2020, 10:25 PM   #14
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Aside from the front of the frame, where else is it marked "20"?
The first of your last 3 photos looks like the front of the grip frame has been filed back to remove previous numbers. I say that judging by the curve in front of the take-down lever, AND the rails of the barrel extension sticking forward vs. being flush.
Also note the military location number (0) on the commercial side plate.
Things just don't add up to a factory gun, interesting as they may be.
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Unread 01-28-2020, 11:34 AM   #15
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I wonder if someone in the distant past, lacking the skills that Thor has, went to refinish this pistol? Had the work been done before the GCA 68, when serial numbers were mandated, the "refinisher" could well have stamped any numbers the owner wanted, and all this without nefarious intention.

And yes, if it came from an estate sale, make sure the receipt reflects the serial number presently on it. Otherwise, any examiner who looks at it in the future will have alarm bells going off.
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