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G date mauser

3446 Views 14 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  mag4751
This is my 2nd attempt at pictures. Thought I would do it on the beginner level (because I am) and I didnt want to take up anyones' valuable time. If the first one works, I'll post more pics.
This is a S/42, SN 24, all matching #s including the magazine and grips. I dont know the material of the magazine but it is NOT a wooden bottom. more pictures later. Help with markings would we most appreciated. I've learned alot from the forums already.


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OK, 1st one worked, here's the mag. It really intrigues me. What ARE all the markings for? Now this is FUN. I'm getting somewhere!

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If anyone wants another pic to help identify--I can do it.
Is there a registry for the lugers? This is truely a low serial # in the G date series, right?

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Rob........ Welcome to the board.... They produced about 54,000 lugers in 1935 (G Date) and the sn range is 930a -5000f (This info from Jan's book THIRD REICH LUGERS.) They made them in blocks of 10,000 guns so yours is the 24th gun they produced in the 4th of the 6 letter blocks used.

The stamps on the bottom of the mag and on the left hand side of the receiver are Army Acceptance stamps. The one on the right hand side of the receiver is Test Proof.

It is neat to have a 2 digit sn and the matching mag is a real plus. The bad news is that it appears that this piece has been refinished at some point in time. Perhaps some other inmates will comment on that.

Thanks for posting..........
With apologies to Dave, the "block" ambiguity is worth addressing. Lugers were not manufactured in "blocks" of 10,000 guns at a time. The manufacture was continuous; when the serial number reaches 9,999 the next serial number (only) is 1 with letter suffix a--10,000 guns later the same thing happens, but with letter suffix b, and so on. Collectors refer to these as "letter blocks" for convenience only.

Indeed, it appears that your Luger has been refinished. In 1935 some of the small parts--trigger, takedown lever, magazine catch, safety lever, ejector--were finished in a yellowish heat treatment called "straw". These parts were not blued in manufacture until late 1937. In addition, it appears in one of your pictures that your extractor is strawed, under the circumstances this indicates that it is a replacement.

Dave, thank you very much. How did you determine the 4th of the 6th letter block thing on the sn? and what tips you off to the refinish? On the left side, there are no marks except 4 serial #s. Am I missing something that you saw? There are however 3 stamps on the right side. One you say is a proof, what about the other 2? I know, so many questions but now I'm getting into it. Thanks again, hope to get more people interested.
Dwight, if the extractor (thin piece of metal in the receiver above the grip on the right side) is strawed, and you say small parts were'nt blued until 1937, doesnt that make it correct? Should it have a sn? i suppose i should dismantle to find one.
Rob, there are many collectors who save serial numbers, but not a registery per se.

By the suffix, the letter in the front of the frame, that is how the 10,000 block comment made above. So, every 10,000 "block" of numbers would receive the next letter. First 10k, no suffix, then 1a, 2a, etc., up to 10,000a, then 1b and on up to your number.

They are proof and acceptance markings on the right of the receiver.

Ed, so....having no prefix letter, I can assume this is the 24th pistol in the G date series? As far as I know, and I'm confident of this, There has been no refinishing of this particular piece in the last 55+ years since it was in my father's possesion. Any comment on this topic? Does it lessen the value that dramatically? I'm still a litte fuzzy as to what this strawing color is and what it SHOULD look like. I've been looking at some pictures in the forum.

Rob, you have a "D" Letter Block or it's just somtimes called a D-Block. The G-Date Lugers began in the A-Block, as Dave said (930a). So the first G-Date Luger had a serial number of 930a approximately.

Your G-Date (24d)was completed in about July of 1935. I say about, because my calculations are based on a uniform production schedule and it probably wasn't exactly uniform.

The take down lever, trigger, magazine release button, safety lever and ejector (the flat thing on the right side of the grips) should all be a straw (yellowish to golden) color. Since your Luger appears to have these parts that are blue, one can only conclude the pistol was reblued or someone found blued parts from another Luger that were substituted. If a substitution occurred, the only parts that are numbered are the take down lever, trigger and safety lever. The other two are not numbered.

Hope this helps!!
Frank, everything helps and I appreciate it. How do you tell its a "D" block ?? there isnt a D on it anywhere!
are you saying...the mark on the frame just above the trigger guard, all by itself, is a "D" ?
Thank you Jack. I would have never, ever known. It's a sad day when you cant learn something! Here's to happy days ahead.
Let me recap--I have a Mauser made G date S/42, d block sn 24, presumably refinished although not in the last 55 years, matching magazine and grips, military acceptence and proof marks, with possibly few of the parts replaced (ie) the extractor.
Does anyone else agree? anything more to add? Thanks to all contributors, I'll keep reading.

Lugers up until 1937 were rust blued. This is a process of rusting the outer surface and then removing this rust, as many times as required to take the surface to the proper darkness and surface protection. The interior of the frame was not rusted, and was in fact polished out after each rust application, so it should be properly "white" bare metal.

After 1937 Lugers were salt blued, a chemical process wherein the gun parts are immersed into a chemical solution which reacts to blue the surface, after which the parts are removed and the bluing chemicals chemically neutralized. This blues the interior of the frame as well as the exterior of the gun, and you should examine your Luger's interior for this tell-tale sign.

Re-blue of Lugers is most commonly of the salt blue variety. Since it involves immersion and chemical neutralization, guns are usually immersed without disassembly so all parts are blued equally, including the small parts. Alternatively, these parts may be removed, but commercial bluers or home hobbyists who do not know the proper finish in the first place just blue the small parts because they are there.

In either case the ejector is not a part which is commonly removed under any circumstance, so it would naturally become blued in the chemical process. The fact that it is the -only- strawed piece on an otherwise (suspected) reblue is compelling reson to believe that it is a replacement.

It looks like the takedown lever is numbered to the gun. Examine the trigger and safety lever for their serial number, I will be very surprised if they are not numbered to this gun as well. The ejector is not a serial numbered part. I recommend that you do not remove it, it is a tempered spring and somewhat brittle--no sense in applying the stresses of removal and replacement if it is not necessary.

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Dwight, Thanks. Thats a very clear explanation and easily understood. For all interested, I've taken 2 more pictures of the pistol dismantled (as far as I want to take it down). Of note, find the P on the underside of the toggle, the s in front of the barrel lug, the F on the bottom of the receiver, the 24 on the trigger,takedown lever and the safety slide (no # on the safety lever). The inside of frame is obviously blued and although not shown in pictures, the firing pin is also numbered 24
Info about the f,p and s would be appreciated. I assume inspector's marks?
1st pic--underside barrel and toggle
sorry, not a great pic. the f is to the far right of the pic.

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2nd pic-- left side frame and inside of grips
again my apologies as to quality. the trigger is marked 24 which is normally behind the side plate when assembled.

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The letters are actually called "worker stamps". They are applied at various stages of parts manufacture by factory workers or inspectors, as opposed to being Army "inspector's marks" as can be seen on WWI Erfurt Lugers. The reason or meaning of the particular stamps and their placement is unknown. A couple of people have started statistical studies of them, but their conclusions have not yet been made public and may actually have been abandoned.

I've put the LUGER to bed! It was apart for many days. Many thanks to Jan C. Still for hosting this site and to Dwight,Jack, Frank, Ed and Dave for contributing to my knowledge. From their input and expertise, I have ascertained that the Luger in my posession is the following:
A "G" date (1935), Mauser made S/42, d block sn 24.
It has been refinished at some point in time as evidencd by;
the small parts do not have a "strawed" finish (except for the extractor), the inside of the frame is blued. (Is it possible this Luger was recomissioned into military use after 1937 and reblued under the new process?). Food for thought.
All of the parts match including the grips and magazine ( did I mention I have an extra fxo magazine too?). However, the safety lever has no visible s# and may be suspect without removing. Even the firing pin is numbered 24 and it is NOT blued (strange).It has military acceptance stamps, proof marks (the one that looks like a sea shell) and "worker stamps" (f,p,s) on some of the parts. I've enjoyed sharing it through pictures and hope other readers learned something as well. There was never any mention of value. I know the value, it's priceless! A work of art, a piece of beauty. I love shooting it, cleaning it and enjoy thinking about where it may have been in its' life.
I feel I've been elevated to one notch above beginner and may even be able to assist someone else in the future. Thanks again, I think I'm going to get Jan's book!
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