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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am a member since 6 days now and in the meantime I've read a lot on waltherforums.
Maybe it exists already, but till yet I couldn't find any thread or reply, where the German proofmarks, especially the date of a proofmark, are explained exactly.
If you search for the production date of your Walther pistol, the date of the proofmark gives a good hint for that, expecially if you can't find any hint by the serial number.
Of course it's only a hint - it's possible, that a pistol was produced already a certain time before it was sent to the proof house (Beschussamt) by the manufacturer.
The two numbers or two letters you find near the mark of the proof house name the year of testing or encrypted,
A-K (without J) corresponding to the numbers 0-9.
Since 10.20.2014 it isn't used any longer the eagle with the letter underneath for the respective kind of testing but the letters CIP with the respective letters underneath.
Here's a link to the website of the proof house Ulm, where all things are explained, translated by Google translate:
https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=de&sl=de&tl=en&u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.beschussamt-ulm.de%2Fbeschussamt%2Fhauptnavigation%2Fwaffentechnik%2F05_beschusszeichen%2Findex.php
If the translated website isn't opened directly, click on the blue German word "Übersetzen" (translate)

Here's the link to the original German website:
https://www.beschussamt-ulm.de/besc...on/waffentechnik/05_beschusszeichen/index.php

Here's a link with the markings of the German proof houses, translated by Google translate:
https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=de&sl=de&tl=en&u=http://www.beschussamt.de
If the translated website isn't opened directly, click on the blue German word "Übersetzen" (translate).

Original German website:
beschussamt.de
BTW Since 2019 the proof house Kiel is working again.

Additional remarks:
It were used after 1950 different kinds of eagles, one is a more stylized one, but always an eagle with the respective letter for the kind of testing. Explaining that would become too detailed and rambling.
All markings described above apply only to commercial pistols and pistols for the police and other public authorities.
Pistols for the German Armed Forces (Bundeswehr) may or may not have these markings, as there is a Bundeswehr's own inspection service.
All explanations are only valid for pistols after 1950, previous markings aren't described and explained.
P.S. If there exists already a similar explanation like my one, you may add it to the respective thread.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
It's all exhaustively explained in Dieter Marschalls "Walther Verteidigungspistolen" available in 4th edition from DWJ Verlag.
Of course you are right, I own that book as well. But at least in my German edition the new CIP proofmarks aren't listed.
And as far as I know it doesn't exist an English edition of this book, does it?

Not every new American owner of a Walther pistol, who becomes a member of this forum, knows about that book, not to mention that he's able to read it, if it doesn't exist an English edition. I detected that by a lot of requests, threads and replies.
 

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Explanations here are useful because many don't have or want to buy the book for whatever reason - especially if the current/anticipated size of their collection doesn't merit the expense.

Question to owner's of Dieter's book: To what extend does it address Ranger/IA pistols?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Question to owner's of Dieter's book: To what extend does it address Ranger/IA pistols?
I am too new on Waltherforums for the special designations/abreviations used here. Therefore I hope you excuse my question:
What are Walther Ranger/IA pistols? :confused:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Ranger/IA = Interarms (IA) roll marked pistols that were produced by Ranger Manufacturing in the USA.
I own the second, revised edition (1999) of "Walter Verteidigungspistolen".
At least in that edition isn't listed any Ranger/IA Walther pistol.
Besides other replicas of the PP/PPK are listed two American replicas:
1) PPK made by Interarms, Alexandria, in stainless steel
2) PPK made by Indian Arms, Detroit, in stainless steel with strait contours in the muzzle area.
Other American Walther pistols aren't listed.
But probably that's different in later editions.

Edited: I've just ordered on Amazon the last, 4th edition, which was mentioned by Kar98. I will report, if in that edition is listed any Ranger/IA.
 

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The shift to the CIP proof mark five years ago is the last change or addition that I am aware of. Post-war markings are relatively few and simple compared with those of the late 1800’s though 1940’s, plus military marks galore. This subject gets even more complicated when you consider proof and acceptance marks from adjacent countries who did or do import/export.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Explanations here are useful because many don't have or want to buy the book for whatever reason - especially if the current/anticipated size of their collection doesn't merit the expense.

Question to owner's of Dieter's book: To what extend does it address Ranger/IA pistols?
I promised in a previous reply, to answer that question.

Today I got not only the holster for my P5c but also the ordered German book about Walter pistols.
It's the 4th, revised editon of "Walther Verteidigungs Pistolen - Modell 1 bis PPX", written by Dieter h. Marschall, published 2016 by dwj Verlags-GmbH, ISBN 978-3-936632-89-7.

In that last edition of Marschall's book the PP/PPK/PPK-S made in the USA are described in a better and more detailed way than in my older 2nd edition.
With the help of Google translate I have translated the relevant sections. Maybe the translation is sometimes a bit bumpy.

On side 95 is written:

Walther PPK, licensed production USA
PPK Manufacturing Interarms / Carl Walther USA / Smith & Wesson:
...

Initially, the American importer Samuel Cummings of Interarms, Alexandria / Virginia, let produce Walther PPKs with his company address in the slide lettering.
However, this production was not done by Interarms itself, but by Ranger Manufactoring Co., then by Black Creek Inc. - both part of the Mid South Industries consortium in Gadsden, Alabama. In 1999, the license agreement with Interarms expired and Carl Walther USA LLc entered the existing production - in cooperation with Smith & Wesson.
However, as of January 1, 2013, Walther / Ulm will largely take over the US business through the newly founded Walther Arms, Inc., Fort Smith, Arkansas. The PPK / S will then be produced at Walther / Arnsberg.
(Own remark: Seems to be an older statement, because that has happened nowadays)
Features of the US PPK:
like PPK Ulmer manufacturing, however
- slide in the muzzle area somewhat fuller
- handle not forged but manufactured by precision casting process.
- no lanyard hole
- handle spur a bit longer and tapered - often called in the US literature beavertail
- PPK of US licensed production for Interarms has been marked "Under License of Carl Walther Ulm / Do" on the slide; S & W preferred the spelling "... License ...".
- from 1986: stainless steel version in caliber .38 ACP / serial number (SN) with prefix A
- from 1988: version in stainless steel or blued steel in caliber .380 ACP (SN with prefix K)
- from 1998: also stainless steel version in caliber .32 ACP (SN with prefix B)

On side 115 is written under the title Replicas of the PPK besides replicas from other countries:
...
USA
In the 1970s, Georg Perlotto of Indian Arms (later renamed Eagle Arms, then Michigan Arms) Detroit, Michigan produced a copy of the Walther PPK in stainless steel and .380 ACP caliber under the model designation P380. This happened without a license agreement with Walther. Only about 1000 pieces were made.
Characteristics:
like Interarm's PPK, however
- slide in the muzzle area completely straight
- ventilated sight rail
- two-piece wooden grips with embedded wooden emblem (Indian head)

By that translation I have fulfilled my promise.<img src="http://www.waltherforums.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" border="0" alt="" title="Smile" class="inlineimg" />
 

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Thanks, sparks my interest in the book. Other forum members are real experts on the history of US Walthers (especially MGMike), but I believe there are now four "generations" of US made "PPK" pistols:
-- Interarms, Alex Va (aka Ranger): provided the first stainless steel PPK and PPK/S Walthers
-- Walther USA L.L.C., Springfield, MA.
-- Smith and Wesson (S&W): provided the first PPK and PPK/S Walthers with an extended grip tang ("beaver tail") and a continous feed ramp.
-- Fort Smith: continued the extended grip tang and continous feed ramp. Also the very first Walther PP series pistols with slides made in Germany and frames made in the USA. Also the very first stainless steel slides with Zella Melhis style intergated sights.

PS:
-- None of the US made pistols have included the lanyard loop.
-- I would really like Fort Smith to make available, what i call "grip spacers", to put on PPK/S mags for use in PPK pistols. I've seen some "after market" spacers on the internet, but I'd really like Fort Smith (Walther) to provide them.
 
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