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Old 05-15-2010, 02:19 PM   #11
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You are most welcome, indeed. The P.38 is a terrific pistol. Just think of the history that it could convey, if only it could talk.
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Old 06-09-2010, 12:18 PM   #12
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Question about a Walther P38

I am with the Commemorative Air Force (a group restoring and flying WWII aircraft) and we have a fairly good WWII museum in our Houston hangar that is open to the public and school groups.

Someone just donated a P38 pistol that someone in his family captured in Germany in 1945. I am trying to find some place to further identify this pistol from the markings on it so it can be properly identified when on display in the museum.

The serial number appears to be: 1537 d ac (on left side of slide) the 1537 d also appears on the left side of trigger frame, along with a marking (three horizontal lines of different lengths with 358 under them).

On the right side of the slide are three marks. (three lines with 359 under them, an eagle with what may be a swastika under it and then another three lines with 356 under it.)

Under the slide on the right side is another mark with three lines and 359 under it.

The magazine is also marked. It has P38 stamped near the bottom. On the rear edge it has three markings, upside down.
1. Three lines with 359 under them.
2. An elongated box with the following under it (Wa [? middle symbol not clear] 706)
3. The lettere jvd (arranged vertically)

I would appreciate any help you could give me in identifying this pistol better.

Sam Hoynes
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Old 06-09-2010, 01:17 PM   #13
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Hi, Sam, and welcome to the forum. We trust that you'll enjoy your time here.

Here is some information to at least get you started:

The pistol in question (and a hearty congratulations on the museum's acquisition, by the way) was made at the Walther plant in Zella-Mehlis. The ac was Walther's secret military ID to keep the Allies from knowing where the plants were located so that they wouldn't be able to drop bombs on the buildings and put the munitions operations out of business. If you look more closely, you are likely to find a couple of numbers after the ac: a 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, or 45. That would indicate the year that the pistol was made. If not, and all you find is the ac code, your P.38 might be a rare (and valuable) 0-series pistol. If you post some photos, we'd be able to tell you more.

Charts that provide an exact month that the pistol was made can be found on the P.38 Forum, but you'll need to know the year that it was made first:

www.p38forum.com

It will be well worth your efforts to visit there. Be sure to spend some time with Ron Clarin's report on the capture of the Walther plant in 1945 by Patton's 3rd Army. You'll find it in the Sticky at the top of the war-time pistols sub-section. That's also where the monthly production charts are located, as well as the information on the Nazi secret codes and Waffenamt information.

The stamps on the right-hand side of the slide are Army acceptance proofs (Waffenamts). And yes, the middle stamp has a Nazi swastika under the eagle.

I suspect that the magazine that was found with the pistol is not original to it; jvd-marked magazines are generally found in the Spreewerk pistols, and sometimes in the Mauser pistols, IIRC. Additional materials about the magazines and the codes/stamps that accompanied them also can be found on the P.38 Forum. This is the place where the experts for these pistols reside, by the way, so don't hesitate to migrate there. Information about the magazines also can be found in Ron Clarin's excellent book on the Spreewerk pistols, and you'll find Ron on the P38 website as well.

In all, the Walther plant turned out more than 584,000 P.38s for the German war machine.

Hope that helps a bit. Your museum sounds interesting. Do you have a website? Any links to share?
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Old 07-08-2010, 11:35 AM   #14
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Folks who are interested in delving into the P.38 should spend some time here:

http://eartist.nl/production_dates.htm

You'll get an excellent look at codes, production dates, the wartime stamps, etc.

Of course, the entire website is of great interest to Walther/P.38 collectors as well; you'll find it here:

http://www.eartist.nl/Walther%20P38.htm
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Last edited by searcher451; 07-08-2010 at 11:38 AM.
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Old 07-21-2010, 05:39 PM   #15
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Here's a site that might prove interesting to WWII gun enthusiasts, along with Browning, Colt, Winchester, and U.S. military small arams collectors:

http://proofhouse.com/

Note the German Ordanance Codes and Gun Codes and Markings sections.
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Old 12-22-2012, 01:11 PM   #16
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Was poking through the stickies and found the original link in this thread a dead end. The site moved. Here is an updated link:
http://bluebookofgunvalues.com/Info/...Proofmarks.pdf
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Old 02-11-2013, 07:01 PM   #17
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Where the heck is Ferdonia???
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