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My first WWII pistol purchase, this would be the one that sent me down the rabbit hole. Correct me if I am wrong but here goes my analysis: Spreewerk, April 44 manufacture date, numbers matching 4468 0(including locking block), e88 proofs on left side of barrel & frame, 2 on the right side of slide with acceptance mark. The question I have is what is the 511(3rd pic from bottom) center above the grip frame, left side?

What are your thoughts on condition(looking for honesty, you wont hurt my feelings, it was too cheap not to buy)? I am not much good at figuring % blue, id call it 50-70%. Taking pics trying to focus on the markings is not for the faint of heart.

As for the magazine. Proper ENM welds on left, presumably no other markings. See pics below, there is an e88 but it is so small it shouldnt count, center bottom.
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I keep mine around 1050 fps with a 115 gr. round nose bullet. Works great in my shooter Luger too.
What Mauser888 said. DO NOT shoot your friend's 147 grain reloads in your P.38. I also don't know where the author of the article you read came up with 1400 fps for WW2 9mm but that's an insane velocity unless it was a very light, special purpose bullet. DO NOT abuse your pistol with hot loads. If you must buy cartridges, try White Box Winchester 115 grain. They seem to be safe in Lugers and wartime P.38's.
TomJ, if your buddy could make you loads with plated 115 grain round nose bullets in the 1050 fps range then that should be OK in your P.38. I have a 1943 and a 1944 cyq P.38. Both are all matching and in excellent condition. I've never fired either of them and have no plans to do so. I used a post-war P1 to shoot and have the same experience. Below is the 1943.

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1. Just trying to get this into my thick head. My reduced loads, 147 Gr/950 fps. I’m guessing that y’all are disapproving of the 147 Gr bullet not the reduced speed?
It's not the speed but the pressures required to move a 147 grain bullet at 950 fps. You're using an 80 year old pistol built during wartime of materials that aren't as durable as those we have today. The recoil springs are likely weaker than when new. Also consider that the powder used may have a burning characteristic that could create pressures that last longer than normal and cause battering of the parts. Your pistol, your call but I would err on the side of caution.

2. I figured out where the 1400 fps For the German Military statement came from. Page 15(upper right)of Reese’s book Luger Tips. That still seems a bit “hot” to me. He even suggested removing 2 coils from the mainspring to improve reliability with todays ammo.
I don't believe that Reese is a good source for advice on loads to use in the Luger or P.38. Over the years there were MANY 9mm loads developed for the German military using very light to very heavy bullets. The original Luger load used a 123 grain bullet fired at approximately 1090 fps. Regardless, I would not subject a wartime P.38 - without regard for the manufacturer - to any load that I thought was "hot".
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