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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, I could use a little help. Trying to establish a value of this 41 BYF Luger. The owner states that it was acquired through an import company some years ago. She was kind enough to let me take some pictures of it to help with researching what she has. All numbers on the outside match with the 1080 serial number. It has "C.I.A ST. ALB VT." stamped under the barrel. The proof marks on the right side of the frame are hard for me to read, but they look like 135. I am not sure whether it has been refinished or not as I really have no expertise in this area. There is what looks like some pitting on the right side of the frame, but the finish remains dark. Mechanically, the Toggle action will retract, but has to be pushed forward, as it does not snap forward when released. With the toggle pushed forward and the bolt closed, the barrel assembly freely moves forward and back when the pistol is shaken. So, needless to say, it needs some repair. Any ideas on the current value of this piece, and what kind of money it might take to get it back to working order?
 

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Randy, welcome to the Forum!
There is a good chance that the luger does not need to be repaired. It is possible that it has not been reassembled correctly.
There is a "s" shaped coupling hook on the rear of the toggle that has to be connected correctly to the frame for the gun to function properly.
There are some disassembly videos on Youtube which can help you get the luger put back together right.
It looks like a nice late 1941 luger but the import mark will hurt it value. Looks like it would be a great gun to shoot.

Tom
 

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First off yourt top cannon , the barrel, forks-bolt has a hook underneath that connects to the mainspring. This pistol has been improperly put back together, the T is not hooked up to the grasping hooks in the mainspring housing. Not broken at in all likelyhood.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the information!! The pistol now has been reassembled correctly and the toggle is now snapping into battery when released!! It sounds like due to the import mark, that is would be more of a shooter than a higher valued collectable? Any idea as to what an appropriate value of this pistol should be? Thanks in advance for you input!!
 

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I don't think the import mark automatically relocates this gun to the "shooter" category. It appears to be a nice matching example otherwise. Could we get a close-up of the front of the frame? I can't make out what is between the serial and the suffix. I will reserve stating what I think its worth until others comment. JB
 

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It's an X, it also apears there is some fine printing on the barrel under the "C.I.A." stamping, what does it say or am I seeing things? This is really interesting, JB
 

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Next time you disassemble your luger, take a look on the inside of the trigger plate. You should find the number "11" stamped inside.

The "X" marking is typical of Russian Capture lugers that were taken into service within the Eastern Block after WW-II.

These are typically marked with the "X" and dip refinished. Often you find the grips and other parts replaced with newly manufactured parts from the East...

This one looks pretty much untouched. I can't judge the finish well, so it may or may not be dipped. It may have come to the Russians as a brand new Luger, which they pretty much left alone until it was sold to Century Arms (who imported it to the USA).

These have been coming into the USA over the past several years, with the most recent batch arriving about a year ago.

This is one of the nicer ones that I have seen.

As to value, My guess is between $750 and $1000 depending on what the buyer thought of the import markings. Without the import mark, and in original finish, this would be a $2000 pistol.

Marc
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Marc,

I just checked under the trigger plate and it does have the "11" marking. Thank you so much for the information....this is getting pretty interesting to a guy that is new to all of this. I do have a question regarding the finish. If the "x" was added to the frame after the manufacture of the pistol, and the import mark placed on the barrel when it was imported, and both have blueing over them.....would it be safe to say that it was refinished at least once, after the import stamp was placed?
 

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Mmmmm... If they are uniformly blued over the markings, then it was very likely refinished - but very nicely done. Perhaps just in those areas? This pistol was originally salt blued.

The marks like that CAI mark on some of my pistols broke through the bluing (different models, not Lugers).

So... someone here may have redone that.

Regardless, while not formally considered collectable by most Luger collectors, it is a particularly nice all matching example.

These later Mauser made Lugers are particularly well made, with the best metallurgy of the period. The problem with breaking a part on an all matching gun (which can and does happen regularly) is that it considerably affects the value - even on a particularly nice shooter.

You do have a very nice Luger there...

Marc
 

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Are the grips numbered to the gun? Post a pic of the safety area in the safe position. Pic #3 has me thinking it's original finish. JB
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Marc,

I just checked under the trigger plate and found the "11" marking. This story is getting really interesting!! Just a thought on the refinishing question....if the Russian "x" was placed on the frame after the original manufacture and is blued, and the import mark on the barrel at a different time, and is blued....I would think that the pistol would have been refinished at least once for sure. Does this affect the value, if the importer did the refinishing?
 

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Most would consider the import marking to classify it as a "shooter". As it would already be considered a high level "shooter" grade Luger, I don't see how the refinishing would impact it's value negatively.

Other CAI marked imports I have definitely showed finish changes due to the marking.

If this one was refinished, I'm not sure how to determine if it was done by the Russians or someone here.

From what I can see, the work was well done.

Marc
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Marc,

Thanks for that explanation. This is starting to get interesting!! In regards to the finish, I would think that if the "x" was added after original manufacture, then the import marking at a later date, and both have blueing over them, that the pistol would have been refinished at least by the importer. Would this affect the value?
 

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The import marking and "X" have already affected value negatively in the way that refinishing would...

but...

VoPo Lugers (almost all of which are import marked) are a category that is becoming collectable in itself. Within that, you have one of the better examples that I've seen. The import mark is more aggressively visible than many of the earlier imports or other importers that used more discrete marks, but it's all matching nature, the visibility of it's well struck "X" and it's good finish and all matching status make it a very desirable VoPo...

So, this may seem byzantine, but it makes sense in light of the individual requirements that owners and collectors develop...

I am not an expert in VoPo lugers, so take these comments with a grain of something...

Marc
 

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Post a close-up photo of the RH side of the forward portion of the frame (near the trigger guard) with the take down removed (looking for a sunburst or pein marks). Also one of the inside of the frame (top view, field stripped) showing any markings (looking for sunbursts, shields etc.).

I'm not 100% sure the Vopo (east Germans) had this one in service and would like to see some east German proofs (or evidence of removal) somewhere on the gun.

The more I look at it the more I am convinced it hasn't been dipped. JB
 
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