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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently acquired an undated HK PO8. I will try to describe it as best I can and insert some pictures.
First of all, sn is 5065 which would put it in the 1936 military era. As best as I can tell, the frame, toggle assembly, grips, and sideplate are all Krieghoff regarding finish and proofing. Even the hold open latch is eagle 2 proofed on its underside. All Krieghoff commercial #'s match. The question is in the reciever and barrel assembly. The underside of the barrel is properly eagle 2 proofed, serialed to the Luger and guaged. The firing (?) proof that should be on the right side of the barrel is not present. The three proofs that are normally preset on the right side of the reciever are also not there. If you look under magnification, it appears that they were removed but very professionally. Also missing is the date on top and serial number on the right side of the reciever. I believe these too have been removed. The removal of these marks was done expertly as it is hard to tell they were ever there. The finish on the barrel and reciever is duller blue then the HK blue on the rest of the pistol. Almost like after the marks were scrubbed the metal was not polished before refinishing? One other point of interest is that there is a four pointed star in the inside of the frame just to the rear of where the take down latch goes through.

Could this Luger be a rejected military sold commercially? Post war parts gun? From what I've read , the serial range is wrong and there is no commercial proofing whatsoever. If this is a scrubbed reciever shooter, , then why was only the reciever srubbed and nothing else?
I need help on this as I am certainly not a Krieghoff expert. All information greatly appreciated.
Jared V.

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Jared, I expect someone will answer you soon, a friend of mine, John was not able to respond, and he will as soon as he is able.

Ed
 

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Hi Jared;

I apologize for the delayed reply, but I’ve been kept somewhat busy over the last few weeks. Hopefully, some of the information below will assist, and others will comment if they have additional information or insight. There are a number of collectors in these Forums that have a great deal of HK insight – so perhaps they’ll add to the information below, or offer an alternate opinion. As well, should you have any questions about my “rambles” below, feel free to ask, as I’ve only attempted to cover the major aspects rather then all the data your post and pictures provided.

This HK is certainly somewhat of an enigma. Let me explain, drawing from both Mr. Gibson’s reference work (“The Krieghoff Parabellum”) and some of my notes and earlier comments made on this subject. In short, however - I’ve tried to take several of the major components as shown and described – and match them to known variations that exist. Unfortunately, it certainly doesn’t appear to fit into any.

On the frame, you noted that there is a 4-point start in the front well. This is a “rejection mark”. While there were several rejection marks used by HK, the 4-point star is the least common – found in a small number of P-Codes Series 1 and, at this time, only two verified P-Code Series II examples. In comparison the 5-point star, found externally on the Luger are far more commonly encountered during this same timeframe.

However, even with this marking – which would designate Military rejection (it would not be used in the production count towards the Military contract), the other parts (let’s set aside the receiver itself for now in this discussion, and focus on the toggle train, barrel, small parts and frameset ) do not bear any “Commercial” stamps (Early Crown N or late Eagle N). Rather – they are marked as Military – and the frame still retains the LWaA First Stage (which is proper) but went no further into the production sequence, which is improper given the other markings (see barrel write-up below)

Focusing on the barrel itself – may yield more clues. First, the barrel is gauged. Note that this was the absolute last mark made before final Military acceptance, and followed even the chamber dating of the receiver. And for that, it would lead the collector to presume that, in fact – originally – your barrel was fit to its proper chamber dated receiver. As well, if your HK was intended for Commercial Production – it would also have the characteristic CN commercial proofs on the barrel, rather then being Military marked. In short, Commercial production did not make it to the barrel gauging production stage.

As well – it really does not fit into the “Military Commercial variation” either – based on the Serial Number range in addition to the lack of the proper identifying marks both on the left side of the breech toggle and other areas.

As for a Post War Parts example – there again, I do not believe it’s plausible. According to accounts from those who were involved with the factory – parts were stored in bins/areas off the main production area – like parts retained together. Therefore, the odds of someone assembling your HK with its proper frame/small parts/barrel to an unknown receiver would be nearly impossible, especially as the parts were drawn randomly out of the parts areas. In addition – the Post War production suffered primarily for lack of barrels, and this example has a “matched” barrel – again raising the probability that it was assembled during the wartime years. Even further, based on your photo of the witness mark, it appears to me that the barrel “V” has been re-struck, but I’ll defer that to Dwight and others more involved with that aspect of Luger production.

Based on all the data above, and the contradictions contained on the HK by virtue of the hodge-podge of markings/stamps, and those removed, I’m somewhat convinced that this example has no “collector” value, as it fits nowhere into a "designated" variation and would be viewed as a "shooter" only.

To that, I believe that in the last 50+ years, another receiver has been fit at some point in time and mated to the remaining HK parts. Even with the 4-Star – it might be possible that it was re-worked by the factory and held over for Military issue – but even if that were the case, then the receiver is incorrect as are the lack of supporting proofs/stamps/chamber date - so that theory would summarily be incorrect as well.

I hope this helps, and my best to you,

John
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
John,
Thank you for your information on the HK. I am posting some pictures of the four pointed star, the barrel indexing mark and a small flaw on the frame in the safety area which I just noticed. There appears to be a protrusion just on the exterior in the vicinity of the second E in gesichert. It does not continue on the inside of the frame and appears to be a flaw in final machining. I also noticed several small irregularities in the barrel machining almost like the guy operating the lathe was not paying attention.
I believe the Luger either has a replaced reciever or the serial,proofs and date were scrubbed expertly from the original reciever.
 
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