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165 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here are two late War Steyr Radoms in serial number ranges "J" and "K". As I understand the "J" series is hard to come by. So I thought you might like to see one.

1 "J" series
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3 note mag follower normal style
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4 note E/623 on mag side bottom edge and no E/77's on frame or slide
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5 note E/Waa623 on trigger guard along with two upside down E/Waa623's and one right side up E/Waa623 on slide kind of hard to see
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6 "K" series note E/623's on mags side bottom edge new style mag follower
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7 note no E/77's on frame or slide
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· Registered
552 Posts
* Thanks for the pics & descriptions of two wonderful examples of late VIS production by Steyr. These are historically remarkable and surely merit a hearty congratulations.

* Yes, the 2/J block is a "hole" in reported examples. This makes Jack's example all the more significant. What little I know about this VIS production period was related in the following thread:

· Registered
165 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·

Do you know anything about the different mag styles? I can not believe it but I found another mag to match the one that is in the J series Radom. It has the 623 on the bottom left side with the normal type follower like the other one. I noticed that the mags with the new type follower have the 623 on the right side. Do you know if this is the distinction between them? Are these mags like the ones in the J series rarer then the new style?


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552 Posts
Hi Jack,
* Any e/623 acceptance marked VIS mag is going to be uncommon! And likely made in the last 9-10 months of the war. Great find & thanks for sharing!

* What little I know about VIS mags comes from my limited observations & Pg. 48 of Robert Berger's booklet The Radom Pistol. To quote:
- " There are two common VIS magazine types, The early type has a milled metal follower. The latter type has a stamped metal follower. Some will be found proofed with a '189' acceptance code on the bottom of the floor plate or with a '623' acceptance proof on the lower part of the side wall. Some will also have the letter 'N' with or without a Naval property number. The early finish was blue and the later was parkerized. Many Polish magazines have the circled letter and number acceptance mark."

* So, excluding the early Polish & Navy marked mags, we have at least three original variables (follower construction, finish type, & acceptance mark) combining to perplex us collectors when it comes to VIS-German production mags.
- About 310k German VIS's were made @ Radom & an estimated 40k were made exclusively AT Steyr. Given a premise of 2 acceptance marked mags per pistol, we have about 700k possible acceptance marked mags plus an unknown number of field replacements/spares to consider.

*WAG Time: Probably safe to say most Radom assembled pistols were blued with milled + blued + e/189 mags. Steyr is pegged with about 4k mostly blued pistols in the 2/B block possibly starting assembly as early as June/July, '44. These likely had milled + predominately blued + mixed marked mags. The balance of the Steyr assemblies start in the early 2/H block and end with the 2/K S/N'd pistols. Most of the 2/H pistols I've observed are blued; but, I'd expect more phosphate finished pistols in this block. Missing a majority of the 2/J block hampers pinning down the predominate emergence of the phosphate finish and the appearance of the S/Mtl. follower. The 2/K block appears to be all Steyr phosphate finished pistols suggesting sheet metal followers + phosphate + e/623 mags. Your guess is probably better than mine; but, this WAG is given to begin framing the relative bounds of mag type "rarity".

* I tend to think transitions & tendencies.
- As the milled followers were used up the S/Mtl took over.
- All e/623 marked mags were Steyr only; but, I wouldn't balk @ a batch of E/189 marked mags arriving in Austria for a Steyr 2/H or 2/J pistol allocation.
- Phosphate to me seems a Steyr finish.
- The phoshate mags seem to all be e/623 & S/Mtl types

* Unfortunately: Nothing Definitive!
- One respectable net thread scribe stated the first known phosphate finished VIS was a 2/E0718. But, Lloyd in Vegas showed us a phosphate 2/B7263 Radom E/77 accepted example on this Forum.
- That same net scribe posted 2/J4610 as the last E/77 & E/623 accepted example known to him.
- Was the 2nd mag always Waffen accepted or were unacceptance marked spares issued in the field depot with a holster?

* I think a concerted study is warranted; but, I've not heard of one comprehensive & coordinated one undertaken. Maybe we can glean additional knowledgeable Forum member input to more nearly pin this mag quantity/type & S/N range(s) down tighter. Maybe a running tally of reported examples in the format of:
- Gun S/N, Gun finish, Gun acceptance(s); mag follower type, mag finish, & mag acceptance mark for original 2/B block & later examples.

* My 2 pence.
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