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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Guys hi

I am a newcomer who is just amazed by the depth of knowledge available on this forum, and who also has an info request.

(forgive me if this is a kind of thread which has been done to death in the past)

History – skip this if you want to cut to the chase

I have an LP08 with a continuous provenance from WW1. My grandfather was a regular soldier in the British Army and served in the RASC on the Western front all through 1914-1919. As a sergeant he commanded a convoy of steam lorries mobilized from Chatham Barracks across to France on the very day war broke out in August 1914. He retired a Regimental Sergeant Major, after further service in India post-war and died in 1972.

At some point towards the end of the 14-18 war (his memoirs are not distinct on the dates) he was involved in a small-unit action against a German section armed with a pair of machine guns; they fought to the end and he took the Luger from the body of the officer, complete with holster, stock and 37 (39?) round magazine. Sadly the stock and holster rotted away in the 1930’s.and were discarded.

The Luger has passed from him to me via my late father, also a professional soldier.
Long ago I remember it being fired by my grandfather and father and seems in good used condition. A beautiful piece of precision engineering in design and manufacture.

It hurts me to have to say that our knee-jerk UK Government insisted that it be deactivated or destroyed in the 1990’s along with many others, and having the barrel plugged was the only way to keep it in our family. But let’s not get into the stupidity of politicians, it’s too depressing.

Despite the above butchery, it goes with saying that this memento is not ever going to be for sale, and my own sons will take over custody in due course.

It has the markings
1917
Proof marks
Ornate gothic engraved script DW(?) On top of the “knuckle”
The front sight is fixed
Serial number “4008” (or “08”) on every part including inside the wooden grips
Crudely marked “JR448.10.X” on the rear of the metal core of the hand grip (the side that fits into the palm of your hand)


The big round magazine is marked both
“115629” and “B/N” in a number of places (with the B over a horizontal line with N underneath)



Help request

Can you confirm what (I think) I understand from previous posts; that this unit marking JR448.10.X means “448th Infantry Regiment, 10th Company, Gun number X (roman 10)” and any more about the weapon?

And can you point me at German online casualty lists or unit histories that would let me identify/ shortlist the probable original owner? Any information at all would be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance for your help

Regards
GATOH
 

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quote:Originally posted by GATOH

Ornate gothic engraved script DW(?) On top of the “knuckle”
John,
I will let others handle your actual questions, let me do the quick easy unsaid ones.

Forgive my germanic spelling, I am doing this phonetically; The DWM is Deutches Waffen Manufacturing (oops, that is the english word), and they were the maker in WW1, along with the Erfurt factory. The knuckle is called a toggle, and is fairly uniuqe in the world.

Serial numbers are usually the four numbers under the barrel on the front of the frame and many times there is a "suffix" letter also. Check for a suffix, as that makes a difference in month made.

Welcome to the forum, it is a great place to look around.

Ed
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Ed, thanks
I've just had a look and the only place I can see a suffix is where the serial no appears under the base of the barrel (not noticed this before)
"4008" underneath which seems to be an elaborate upper case letter "C" looking a bit like a lower case "e" in shape.
Below that is "8,88" which I assume is the calibre in mm?

regards
JJ
 

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John
You are correct: JR448.10.X means “448th Infantry Regiment, 10th Company, Gun number X (roman 10)”. The Roman numeral is unusual and I will have to do some research on that. Here are some other LP08's stamped to the same regiment.

* 1917 Lange DWM, s/n 948f : J.R.448. 11.K. <left side/two lines> - (Infanterie-Regiment 448, 11 Kompagnie)
* 1917 Lange DWM, s/n 446f : J.R.448. 9.K. - (Infanterie-Regiment 448, 9 Kompagnie)
* 1917 Lange DWM, s/n 2340 : J.R.448. 9.K. - (Infanterie-Regiment 448, 9 Kompagnie)

The 448 Infantry Regiment was part of the 233 Infantry Division and the 107 Infantry Division during World War I. During 1917 the 233 Division battled at Flanders and under went British attacks.

Jan
 

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GATOH,

Welcome. It's a shame that your government decided to limit your rights to own weapons.

DWM is Deutsche Waffen und Munitionsfabriken.

The B/N on your TM08 "snail" magazine is the maker; the brothers Bing in Nurnberg. They were, and I believe still are, toy manufacturers. It's designed to hold 32 rounds and is impossible to load with out a loader.

The unit marking on your LP08 is somewhat problematic both in its composition and location. With the backstrap location it would appear to be more a Weimar type unit marking but your provenance would indicate Imperial. In the above rendering of the mark did you include all of the periods? Are any of the letters scriptic? Do the sizes of the numerals vary?

Would it be possible for you to post a photo of the unit marking?
 

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GATOH,

keep it. It´s not worth much de-activated. But new barrels (made according to the orignal German Imperial specification) are freely available here in Germany and can be bought and sold without registration. A number of excellent gunsmiths specialise in restoring Lugers. Was plugging the barrel all that was necessary for de-activating? Maybe the time will come when the right to own a handgun is not limited to criminals.

Original LP08 holsters and shoulder boards and good repros are also available (even in the UK): http://www.btinternet.com/~cmr.international/

Patrick
 

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BTW - the company (DWM) was named Deutsche Waffen und Munitions AG (PLC). They employed Georg Luger until after WWI. The company still exists - it manufactures railway rolling stock but is now named Deutsche Waggon und Maschinbau AG - which is more PC.

Patrick
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Guys hi
thanks for all the good info.

Keoki7 -I'll have a go at posting a photo of the marks when I get home from this week's business trip- from memory the X could easily be a K with the poor quality of marking concerned.

Villiers - I'll post you a pm !

Jan - it's interesting that you have details of a gun with a fairly close serial number issued to the same regt. Thanks also for the 448 Regt info - do you have knowledge of any reference sources for eg Regimental War Diaries or soldiers service records?

I'm not being morbid, but I'd be interested to know a little more about the regt and their actions.

Thanks again to all for the interest
regards
JJ
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Guys hi
Finally got home and had a better look at the unit marking - the last character is actually a "K" as you suspected. You can even see that the punch used to mark the "period points" between the marks was square-ended.
I'm really pleased to have had the regt and company identifed - thanks!

If I get the image to load OK you can also see the "C" under the barrel serial. So which month is this code for?

Many thanks again for the expertise on tap.

regards
JJ

Download Attachment: 09.JPG
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I would say this is a "e", not a c.

Note really a code, but a suffix for how many made. There were 90,000 Long pistols made in 1917, and they have been seen in no suffix, then a, b, c, and up to w, so you could take approx 10k a month as a starting figure and then approximate the month yours was made.

Ed
 
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