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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I inherited my Grandaddies Luger the other day, he brought it back with him from Either WW1 or WW2, no-one seems to remember any more. Anyway, I want to learn more about it, and I really want to have it serviced for operation but, frankly, I'm afraid to leave it with the gun guys (they say I should drop it off and come back 3 days later?).

I don't have any pictures yet, but it's smallish, probably about 8" from end to end, all the pieces have a 4 digit serial number starting with 75 (and cutely the cartridges are numbered 1 & 2, with the serial number also of course). It's in a brown leather triangularish case with what appears to be some sort of cursive insignia on top.

I sure could use a lot of information and insight into how to get started. Any help would be greatly appreciated. :)
 

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Hello Margaret, Welcome to the forum. First is there a year stamped on the top of the pistol? By "cartridges" I think you mean magazines. They hold the cartridges or ammunition. If they are stamped 1 & 2 they are for a police Luger. Check the left side of the pistol. You will see a square piece with an oblong hump(side plate) directly above the trigger. Is there a small flat bar that rests on the top of this square side plate? It is riveted to the side of the gun at the rear of the small flat bar. If this is present, then you have a Police Luger. We'll do this 1 step at a time to avoid confusion.

Ron
 

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Hello Margaret, we actually are fairly nice guys, surprised to see a Texan tell us we don't need to know your real name.... Kind of a requirement for this forum, as we purposely want to engineer trust and respect among the members. We have found that if folks leave their real name they are much less likely to go "a trolling", which means that people who come to the forum are just trying to make waves and cause trouble. Not that I think you are trying to do that!

Pictures of the gun would help very much.

Also, it depends on how old gramps was and you could figure out if he was involved in WW1 or WW2, as WW1 ended in 1918 and WW2 ended in 1945...

Ed
 

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MightyYUI,
At first glance it sounds like a German Police pistol. Often these pistols were used in the first world war, converted to police use between the wars, and are likely to have seen service in the second world war. The fact that your pistol has two matching maggaines and an original holster are factors that would increase its value. The primary determinant in a pistol such as this will be condition,and this also applies to the holster. Be careful of any offhand offers from gunsmiths to take it off your hands. If you could post some pictures it would be helpful.

Welcome to the group.
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
With all due respect, I don’t think it’s a good idea to give out my last name. Suffice to say that it is rare and just by having it you could probably find my house (it’s happened before and I really don’t like it). And while I know that you guys are probably all very nice and honest folks, anyone can read pretty much anything on the internet, and I don't think it's smart to talk about a rare gun, that has a great deal of sentimental value btw, in a public forum and be easily identifiable. So, you know, us single girls, we learn to be careful.

As to the gun, I took it up to the range this weekend (but didn't shoot it) and had the guys give it a look over, they said it was like a 1911?...

I've ordered a book on this stuff, but it hasn't come yet.

Meanwhile, here's what I know. There is both a serial number on the top part of the gun (I forgot what you called it) and a matching serial number on many other pieces of the gun. Several others are simply marked "02", although on the outside trigger plate looking thing there is a different number that was either an "H" number or an "88" number. At the bottom of the clip or perhaps handle (I've gotta have this thing in front of me when I write this from now on...) there is also a small symbol (pretty faint) that looked familiar to me, but I can't place it... anyway, it looks sort of like an inverted candelabra.

Anyway, my big thing is, how do I get it serviced and brought into firing condition again? If it just needs a good cleaning I can probably do that myself, but how do you identify a local vendor you can trust with something old and special like this? I don’t want to get it back with a bunch of replacement parts or something. Or am I just being paranoid? It’s my grandaddy’s… I think he’d really like for me to take it out for a spin, but I’m really concerned not to damage it…
 

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We need a lot more information, I know you are trying, but you are not giving us exactly what we need.

To help you,

Give us the serial number, include suffix at the front of the frame, date on the receiver, letters, words, etc., pictures of all sides would help VERY much :)

Although rare to you, there were several million lugers made. Unless yours is a Krieghoff (they would be worth 3-6 thousand), yours is probably worth $700-$1500.

Although I am sure you are being paranoid about your name, my job is security, so can not fault you for your reasoning ~~grinning~~.

Finidng a local guy you can trust, well, that would be up to you, as we don't know them. However, there are probably local or near local guys in Texas where you live. If you clean it yourself, DON'T do it exessively, don't use harsh chemicals on it, etc.

How is it Not firing?

BTW, which book did you order? Some are good, others not so good, one or two or worthless.

Ed
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Lemme see, the book I ordered first is "Beginner's Shooting Guide: With Some Tips for Experts" which came today, and is supposed to have a section on the basic parts of the gun etc (but I haven't actually gotten to look at it yet). I'm open to recomendations on a book specifically about Lugers, I haven't seen anything in the book stores that looked at all interesting, and the volume of information availabe to order over the internet was so overwhelming that I posted on this board for advice. Somewhere around here I have a post-it with the name of some book about collectable guns that's on it's way as well... it had a really generic name like, "the book of collectable guns" or something.

Basically, I'm open for sugestions.

As to the gun itself, I don't believe that there is anything wrong with the fireing mechanism other than it hasn't been fired in about 40 or 50 years.... Oh, and I found a little bit of corrosion on clip #2 that I'm probably going to go after with my handy dandy little gun cleaning kit before too much longer.... (it bothers me... I know grandaddy would *never* have let this happen.)

Also, you guys know anything about the M1's? That's my next project... I'm pretty scared of that one though.

Oh, in the interest of not being a total paranoid freak, I will tell you that the serials on all of the parts are 7502.
 

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Mightyyui

Welcome to the forum, your quote " Oh, in the interest of not being a total paranoid freak, I will tell you that the serials on all of the parts are 7502."

No one is suggesting that you are paranoid and you have put your reasons for confidentiality into perspective, single gals have to be carefull and this I'm sure we all agree.

Now back to your questions, books the best for you if you have an 1911 imperial luger is to source out Jan C Still's editions on Imperial Lugers, these can be had by either sending Jan an email via this forum or book stores.

You are wasting your money on anything else if you solely wish to find out info on your luger, the other respectibable authors are Kenyon, Datig, Jones,and Gibson to name a few,if you require info specifically about the luger and pictures for comparison.

Should you desire to do a search on this forum under imperial lugers you will find a host of informative posts on imperial lugers and you will get a better feeling about your luger.

All else fails send out some pictures and lets see what you got,rest assured someone here will have the answer.
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
K, so, I gave the little guy a nice cleaning etc last night and took extensive notes on the markings that I found, then promptly stumboled out the door this morning without them... I'm going to attach a picture that I found of a different gun that has the same look, holister and equipment, but my holster is much more oxblood looking that the one in the picture and I think mine appears to be, overall, in much more pristine condition (the gun that is, not the holster). I thought it was a little interesting that I found fireing residue in the barrel when I cleaned it last night... pretty sure it haddn't been fired since WW2. But the interior of the gun looked as if it were manufactured a week or two ago. Which was just cool.

I was also impressed to realize that the grips are apparently wood, and are still tight with no signs of shrinkage or dryness... I'm wondering, would it be appropriate to put some sort of wood conditioner on it? Or maybe some gun oil? to keep it nice.

After carefully checking (about 8 times) to be sure the gun was totally empty I checked (and lightly oiled, with gun oil) the fireing mechanism which appears to be operating correctly, however, would not fire unless I manually cocked the gun. Is this standard or is this some sort of addtional safety etc that the hammer (or whatever) will not release unless the gun is loaded? Or (and I want to stress now that having to ask this question makes me feel stupid enough, you don't need to rub it in) was I incorrect in assuming this weapon was semi-automatic in nature?


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Margaret,
Yes it is semi-auto. Don't cock and dry fire it, as this could break the firing pin. Don't put gun oil on the grips. Use some type of furniture treatment made for wood. Murphy's or Pledge is good. Saturating the grips with gun oil will damage them over a period of time. To de-cock it without dry firing. Remove the magazine and ease the toggle down until the spring tension eases just before the bolt is completely forward. Then hold the trigger back and ease it forward until the bolt is completely closed. This should release the sear and allow the firing pin to rest in the fired position. It takes a bit of practice to get it just right.
The pistol has to be manually cocked prior to the first shot. Each subsequent shot will cycle the toggle and cock the firing pin. After the last shot, the toggle should stay open. Welcome to Luger operation 101.

Ron
 

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Margaret,

One small word of warning. A partially disassembled luger is still operational. The barrel/receiver with closed toggle alone can fire a round. The luger is also very capable of going into full auto (i.e. machinegun :) mode if handled improperly. After all, it was modeled after the Maxim machinegun....

There are good reproduction manuals on basic Luger maintenance for sale if you look around. Most books tend to focus on collecting lugers, not on maintaining and firing them, though. Gerard Henrotin did a a very nice series of electronic books (e-books) on the technical aspect of lugers. You may want to check out his material as well.

http://users.skynet.be/HL-Editions/ebook/future.htm

When it comes to general Luger knowlegde, history and collectibility, Jan Still's books are unsurpassed.

Another nice introduction book is John Walter's 'The Luger Story' with general background information.

If your German is good: Get 'Die Pistole 08' by Goertz as well.
 

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Just as a new bystander Margaret, you are to be commended on your patience and determination to get Granpa's trophy just right. Every one of us picked up our first Luger at some point, and had the same questions you have now. Most would have given up after one or two posts, but you're hanging in there. You also appear to want to preserve his gun for the future which shows your respect for what he did. Congratulations on a terrfic piece of family history and thanks for sharing it and your questions. Respectfully, Dave.
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Well, thanks, Ron. :)

The grips have been carved in some sort of cross hatched diamond pattern. If I spray Pledge on them I'm uncertain that I could clean in the groves w/o damaging the finish... would perhaps some furniture oil be a good way to go?

As to the side cover safety thing, it definately is not riveted on, it fits on a hinge type thing, slots into a grove type thing and sort of snaps into place. There is a little release near the muzzle of the gun that when flipped allows it to pop right off... (so I cleaned and oiled there, too.. lightly), and I really don't think the plate has anything stamped on it, but I'll double check. Although, there is a small recessed area running back toward the grip which is stamped poorly (it looks like it is stamped "02" but poorly (like when you are typing and you type the same thing in the same place twice, but it doesn't quite match up) or it could be some other symbol entirely. I assumed it was just a produciton flaw, but whadoIknow?

Oh, as to the WW1 / WW2 thing, he was in both, although of higher rank in WW2. And, he kept the gun kind of as a back up spare... So, really there's no way of knowing from that. My sister has his old letters, which she is going through. She may find a mention of the gun which would narow things down a lot. Maybe not... I don't think he wrote home about such things... but I'm sure she'll check. My brother has his military documents, which I very much doubt will have any mention of this, but I'm sure he'll check as well... (I digress)
 

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Margaret, the following link will take you to a posting in the imperial luger section of this forum with very good pictures of what your luger should look like. The grips are of wood, usually walnut on a 1911, beech was used later on some pistols. Take time to look at the pictures and then look under the weinar police section of the forum and see if the sear safety and other characteristics are on your pistol.

http://www.gunboards.com/luger/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=3541
 

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Margaret, I have to ask, is it actually "marked" 1911 on the top of the receiver? You said, the guys at the range said it was (like) a 1911, but we are all assuming... the guys here are trying to help, but gosh, not much to go on ~~grinning~~

Ed
 

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Hello Margaret, please give us further information, or I will close the thread down.

We have been fairly helpful, but in reality, you have not given us any information? No serial number, no proof numbers, no year of manufacturer, or even who made it.

Ed
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