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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've recently aquired a Unique Model 17, SN. 24733, from the son of the vet who brought it back. It's WaA251 marked, but the mark is hard to read, as it is stamped over rough milling marks. The whole pistol is very poorly finished and shows many unpolished milling marks all over. The silde is stamped 7,65 COURT 9 COUPS "UNIQUE", and the black plastic grips are marked 7.65m/m 9 SCHUSS. I believe it is a early piece made up from unfinished parts after the Nazis took over? Comments welcome. Sorry, no pictures available.
 

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Doug,

I just recently examined a Unique Model 17 here at the Las Vegas Antique Arms show. I believe the one I examined was in the 33xxx serial range. It had a very even gray/brown patina overall but there were no rough milling marks on this one--in fact that is what I remember most distinctly about this specimen was the smoothness of the exterior surfaces. I have a late Kriegsmodel and although the exterior surfaces are not very highly polished and there are visible milling lines it is still fairly smooth and the waffenamt acceptance stamp is very cleanly struck and legible.

Your 17 is fairly early and maybe they had not worked out all the finishing techiniques or standards yet? Sounds like an interesting pistol especially with the connection to the Vet who brought it back. Can you get any further details from the Vet or the son concerning where and how he acquired the pistol? THANKS!
 

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Doug,
According to the book "Military Handguns of France 1858-1958" your slide (maybe all the parts)is probably left over from the French Military contract. No German guns below 21000 were located at the time of the writing of this excellent book. Yours appears early, the grips are the German type.
Dean
 

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From observations, it has always been a mystery as to why the very first Unique Mod.17's were produced in a rather hogged out fashion. It was as if they reversed the production techniques with the last appearing better than the very first ones. Perhaps it was as if the Frenchmen were trying to introduce some production shortfall or failures but were soon persuaded to see the errors of their ways.
 

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I observed/owned some (RF on grips)French Army 1940 contract pistols with SN's 412XXX-4209XX. In my humble opinion Germans continued wih SN manner without the first (Hundred thousands) number. It means the SN 4209XX was followed 21000. Some support/oppose for my hypothesis??
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Many thanks to all for the information! Unfortunately, the vet who brought the gun back passed away several years ago, and all the son knew about it was that his father picked up in France in 1944. I wish I had known him. Except for the fact that the WaA was stamped OVER some milling marks (I originaly thought the mark had been defaced but examination under magnification showed otherwise) I would think it was a "lunch box special". So far as I know, the WaA was put on complete guns. Some of the pins are overly long as well, and pressure from a overlong mainspring pin resulted in a cracked grip near the lanyard loop. It looks more like a last ditch weapon than an early production model. I'm going to file it under "oddities" and keep it safe while it's in my care.
 

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Speaking of finish. My Kriegsmodell #69204, has a very thin coppertone finish.No holster wear.




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129.92KB The metal is smooth and free of machine marks, but appears bead blasted.The different manufacturing methods are interesting. Seems that the techniques should be reversed. With war time pistols being roughly machined. Lanyard loop is missing. However, I am told that some were never installed. The holster I found at Reno.He said "Just an old flap holster." Gave him $20.00 for it. Had just looked at a photo in Whittingtons. And thought ,I'll never find one. Walked down 2 tables. And there it was!

Ron
 

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[The moderators might want to move these posts to the proper section]

If the serial numbering theory turns out to be correct, then this one
should among the first Uniques made under the German Occupation:



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Serial number 21247 is also waA 251 marked, but the quality of polish
is actually quite acceptable, although the bluing is still thin.



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I question the originality of these "bullseye pattern" grip panels...
The seller claimed them to be an early (transitional) style. I've
seen 3 or 4 models pictured in my references, but none like these.



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Here's a closer view of the details and markings of the barrel:


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Does anyone have an idea of the serial number range at which the changeover to production of the KriegsModell took place? Also-
What is the highest reported serial # for German marked Uniques?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
r_ t_: Mine shows way more milling marks than yours, but is very similar in finish. I don't know when the "7,65 m/m 9 SCHUSS" grips were begun, but I believe my grips are original to this pistol. I wish I could get picture posting right, then I'd post some. When I get to the last window, to specify the image to be attached from the folder, it won't let me highlight it for attachment. Don't know why, but if somebody has some advise I'd welcome it!
 

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If anyone here at the forum has a waffen marked Unique
pistol with a serial number below the 21,000 range, I'd
appreciate if they would please report it's # here.
I'm sure if numbering did indeed begin with serial #1,
we should definitely hear from an owner of one of them!
It should soon prove or disprove the theory above...
 

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Glad to be able to help you out, Pancho!

Number 21247 has the assembly #17 on the barrel,
slide, and safety lever. I'm embarassed to admit
that I couldn't get the slide all the way off so
as to check the frame for its assembly number.
I'd be very surprised if it didn't also have a
#17 stamped somewhere on the frame as well...

Hope this is useful information for your quest.

P.S. I couldn't help but notice the much longer
extractor on the later production Unique pistols.
Was this part of the Kriegs Modell redesign, or
was it an ongoing improvement that was phased in
before that changeover took place? Just wondered.
 

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r.t.,
Don't know when the extractor was made longer, but was likely part of the inprovements made by the Germans when their redesign resulted in the Kreigsmodell. Here is some info on how to field strip this pistol. It seems to me that these pistols are commonly mismatched. Let me know if your frame matches.

Ron,
My Kriegsmodell is matching, but I have a Model 17 that is not matching. Since these pistols lack a serial number on the slide, it seems that the assembly number is the only way to determine a match. I've not photographed my Mod.17 for that reason, but since it seems that these pistols, Mod.17 and Kriegsmodell, are commonly mismatched, I'm going to photo it and put it in my website.

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Pancho, I may be incorrect in my assumption, but I believe that some were mis-matched at assembly. The numbers on mine are only 8 numbers apart. I feel it would be quite a coincidence to find numbers that close, after the fact. And to find a barrel in the same condition as the pistol. My Kriegsmodell is in nearly unissued condition, as is the barrel.If I am wrong,the barrel was an awfully lucky find.The bore is mint.

Ron
 

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I finally got my slide dismounted and it does indeed have
the same matching assembly number 17 as the rest of gun.
I already was doing it the correct way, but just needed
to apply a bit more force to jar the recoil spring loose.

Should I read anything into the 2 digit assembly number?
(Perhaps lending support towards this being a very early
gun...) I hadn't heard any serial number ranges before
buying the gun 18 months ago, and didn't pay a premium.
However, it would be nice to have an exceptional piece.

Let us know if an earlier waffen marked Unique is found.
Also, Fritz's Model 17 must be very close to the last
made before the redesign of the gun took effect. Nice !
 

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Are you sure the extractors are a different length? Have you measured them?
On mine, it looks longer but the slide serrations aren't the same on both models. I think that the slide serration position is making the extractor seem longer.
 
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