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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
hello everyone, i'm new here. i have a question about the design of the P5. it's been said that the P5 is an improved P38. i have a friend who was a P38 collector (he just sold his collection). he had a P5 in it. i was wondering what are the improvements? i had shot many P38s and P1s from my friend's collection. one problem the P38/P1 seemed to have was a "plunging stoppage" where the top cartridge would plunge down in the mag and hit the feed ramp if you dropped the slide with the slide stop. it seemed to me that the mag didn't go high enough in the mag well. the P5 seemed to fix that. it looks like the cartridge has a straight shot into the chamber. so, what are the "official" improvements? thanks!
 

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Your friend is correct: The P5 represents the ultimate refining of the P38 design; many of the internal parts can be swapped, in fact. For specifics, check out the Unofficial Walther Webpage:

http://www.geocities.com/pentagon/quarters/2188/

The section on the P5 will provide you with interesting details, including the shortening of the barrel (supported at both the muzzle and the breech for improved accuracy) and the changes made in the slide contours.

Here are some other links that will provide you with additional insight into the specifics of the changes and will perhaps better explain why the P5 outperforms the P38, the P1, and the P4:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walther_P5

http://www.remtek.com/arms/walther/model/p5c/index.htm (this one is quite good)

http://www.your-gun.com/mm/walther-handgun/walther-p38.html

http://www.riflesnguns.com/pistol/walther/p5

The P5 is an amazing weapon -- not much of a surprise given its long and storied history. It is reliable, it is accurate, and it is above all else fun to shoot. Every Walther fan out there should have at least one P5 around. :)
 

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Many of those websites are just plagiarizing from each other, and not very adroitly. While the P5 can rightly be considered the ultimate refinement of the P.38 CONCEPT, once you get beyond the basic recoil-operated locking system and the general layout, the P5 is a total redesign. Its Walther parentage is plain, but I doubt that many parts interchange. The grip screw, magazine body and takedown lever, maybe. Possibly the recoil springs and spring guides. Not much else. And just as well: the performance of the P5 over the P.38 is like day and night.

M
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
so what are the advantages of the P5 over the P38/P1? did walther completely redesign the pistol? sorry to be so inquisitive but everyone raves about the P5 and info seems scarce or heresay.
 

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so what are the advantages of the P5 over the P38/P1?

Reliability, safety, durability, ergonomics.


did walther completely redesign the pistol?

If Walther didn't, who did?


sorry to be so inquisitive but everyone raves about the P5 and info seems scarce or heresay.
Why not study both side-by-side on a bench and try them yourself on a range?

M
 

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The recoil springs are the same on the P5 and the P38
and no the mag bodies are not interchangeable...... the P5 mags have a cutout in the back... where the P38 mags don't and there is some other refined differences in the mags
however the P38 mags will work on the HK P9s... they just won't hold the slide open on the last round
 

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Uncut: You are correct about the P5 and P38 mag bodies. I was relying only on memory, which is always risky.

Apart from having a latch slot in the spine, the P5 mag body is also slightly shorter; it wll latch into a P38, but will not present a cartridge high enough to feed properly. Neither mag will latch into a P5C, which has a side catch.

M
 
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