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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Guys, I wanted to share a "heads up" with you regarding the P5's offered by SOG. I recently ordered and received one myself. The pistols are advertised as excellent condition and I was told by the phone rep that they were "like new" when placing the order. What I got was anything but excellent or like new. The slide was covered with spots where the blue was gone. It looked like someone had attempted to remove parts of the finish (rust?). The frame looked good with only minor dings.

The price on these P5's is very attractive, but buyer beware! Based upon my experience SOG is overrating the condition of the pistols by a large degree. Due to the complicated arrangements I have to make with my FFL I decided not to attempt returning the pistol. Instead, after working on the finish with cold blue and getting it back to just "decent" condition, I have decided to send out the slide and barrel for black melonite treatment.

I wanted a P5 to use as a shooter. That is exactly what I got.

Out West
 

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Thanks for the head's up. Sounds like they are getting to the bottom of the barrel. I think you will have a fine gun once you have the finish work done. Don't let the original condition fo the gun ruin it for you.

Welcome to the P5 owner's club :D
 

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I've had several friends who have been burned by S.O.G. where the gun was nowhere near the condition advertised. One of them returned a rifle due to its poor condition. S.O.G. sent a replacement that was broken and in an unsafe condition so he then returned the replacement rifle.

Another friend got a rifle in terrible condition and poor mechanical shape. He just dumped it at a gun show rather than deal with them again.

I'm not surprised to hear that they overrate the condition of their pistols as well. Hopefully, once get done restoring the finish, you'll enjoy it.
 

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The price on these P5's is very attractive, but buyer beware! Based upon my experience SOG is overrating the condition of the pistols by a large degree. Due to the complicated arrangements I have to make with my FFL I decided not to attempt returning the pistol.
I wanted a P5 to use as a shooter. That is exactly what I got.
Out West

Out West:

I had the same experience with my surplus SOG P5 a year or so ago.. I ordered what was advertised as an "Excellent" pistol, even paid the additional $15 "hand pick" fee and when the pistol arrived it had obvious slide wear, and there is no way it would be rated, by anyone other than the seller, SOG, as Excellent... "Very good" would be a generous rating as far as external appearance would be concerned, altho the working parts were as new.

My P5 shot extremely well, but I emailed SOG and sent them pictures of the slide wear and they immediately offered to replace the pistol, or return my money. I was so pleased with the shooting performance of the P5 I had that I just couldn't see sending it back for an exchange.. If they actually did any "hand picking" I should have got the "best of the rest" anyway.

So, SOG refunded my "hand pick" fee, and I kept the P5. I think the money I paid for the surplus P5 was reasonable for the pistol I got, and I never had one seconds complaint about it's performance it's just that SOG apparently has no problem overrating the firearms they sell and that's a shame.

I think you will probably find your P5 will function quite well for you as the Walther P5 is a top quality firearm, and my understanding is that the German Government Agencies who are issued firearms (for the most part) carry them a lot, shoot them very little, and observe excellence in maintaining them.

Enjoy... And just know that SOG has a history of over rating the firearms they sell.. Or, "buyer beware" in this area if you are considering buying a surplus firearm from SOG

Best Wishes,

J. Pomeroy
 

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my understanding is that the German Government Agencies who are issued firearms (for the most part) carry them a lot, shoot them very little, and observe excellence in maintaining them.
That observation is consistent with every German ex-police gun that I've ever owned or seen. Shot little, carried a lot, and well maintained.
 

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German officers are only requiered to shoot 200 rounds per year :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Guys its good to know that my luck is not any worse than the next fellow's. However, it is a poor reflection on the seller.

I have to second the carried much, fired little comments. You know how aluminum rails quickly show wear from firing? The rails on the P5 I received looked virgin. The rails were fully black along the entire rail. The only wear on the frame were a few nicks on the sharp edges of the trigger gaurd and the the throat area where rounds bump up as they enter the chamber. The latter was surprising given the condition of the rails - I would think the rails would show some wear from loading the chamber.

One other thing I noticed, the bore was filthy. Germans have a reputation for good maintenance. I am guessing that the pistol may have been put into storage with a generous coating of oil that subsequently turned dark.

This is my second P5 (sold the first), and while I have not shot it yet, I expect it will do just fine at the range. The P5's trigger action is unlike anything else. So smooooth! I can't wait to get the top end back and hit the range.

Out West
 

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This is pretty disappointing to me. I was considering either a P5 or WW2 P-38 from SOG. Here's a pic of a P5 from the SOG website...



Looks pretty spectacular to me. I figured this was one of the "hand picks".
If the P5 they send out is so crappy, I shudder to think what the P-38 in "Very Good' condition must be like!! :eek:

Dep
Dep: Don't be put off on the purchase of a P5. It's a fabulous gun -- wonderful to shoot, with a great design that is mechanically as sound as anything you'll ever find as as accurate as your hand allows. The P38s and P1s are a blast to fire, and this is an upgraded extension of that same basic floor plan. If you poke around a bit and find one to your liking, you surely won't be disappointed in the performance. The P5 is the real deal. Salute.
 

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Any large lot of surplus ex-police guns will run the gamut in cosmetic condition, though all will be serviceable. Don't expect uniformity-- it isn't there. The cream puffs will be picked off fairly early by people on the inside track, but for the rest, you'll get whatever is next on the pile. Except at the very end, where broken or rusty remnants are cleared out, there is no "scraping of the barrel".

Even if you pay a handpick fee, there's no assurance that the warehouse guy (who's probably not even a gun fancier) knows what you like, and his examination will be superficial at best.

Unless there is stated by the seller a very clear spectrum of condition, with correspondingly higher prices to match (indicating that in fact the guns have been actually sorted for condition), you're probably just as well off ignoring the handpick fee. As with many such things, it's the reputation of the seller that counts.

M
 

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Any large lot of surplus ex-police guns will run the gamut in cosmetic condition, though all will be serviceable. Don't expect uniformity-- it isn't there. The cream puffs will be picked off fairly early by people on the inside track, but for the rest, you'll get whatever is next on the pile. Except at the very end, where broken or rusty remnants are cleared out, there is no "scraping of the barrel".

Even if you pay a handpick fee, there's no assurance that the warehouse guy (who's probably not even a gun fancier) knows what you like, and his examination will be superficial at best.

Unless there is stated by the seller a very clear spectrum of condition, with correspondingly higher prices to match (indicating that in fact the guns have been actually sorted for condition), you're probably just as well off ignoring the handpick fee. As with many such things, it's the reputation of the seller that counts.

M
Uncut has reminded us more than once that the German police guns were often carried, seldom shot, and that remains true. Today I put a hundred rounds or so through the P5 that I picked up a couple of months ago from my local FFL, who got it through SOG. For what it's worth, the #&#(*&$ is amazing. It's dead-on accurate (far better than my hand), and it functions flawlessly. It's not the best-looking pistol in the gun safe, by any stretch -- the slide shows multiple signs of holster wear, and I'm thinking of getting it hard-chromed -- but it is rapidly becoming my go-to gun for a flat-out fun day at the range. The P5, IMHO, is every bit the equal of the P99 -- and the 99, as we all know, is amazing. If you haven't shot a P5, I'd urge you to take the plunge. You won't be sorry, even if looks a little tired.
 

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Except at the very end, where broken or rusty remnants are cleared out, there is no "scraping of the barrel".
True, but there is a bottom of the barrel, and in term of cosmetics you've got a lot of guys paying the $10 for a handpicked, so at some point what is left will more than likely be less that the first ones sold, cosmetically speaking. Of course, as you point out, the value of paying for a handpicked gun depends upon how much effort the warehouseman is willing to put in when choosing from hundreds of guns or if the guns have been laid out and sorted.

Fortunately the correlation between external wear and internal wear is not one to one. These guns are shooters and not meant to be safe queens.

I would also point out that this is a different situation from the surplus P7 sales where HK has actually gone over each gun evaluating and grading it. It is worth noting that the A,B or C grade assigned by HK has almost nothing to do with the cosmetics fo a gun but is based on the internal wear/condition.

How much SOG evaluates/sorts any gun before sale (if at all) is questionable. Anyone know for sure?
 

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Of course, when you look at a photo like this one you realize that MGMike makes a good point about handpicks.

 

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According to their October mailer, the price of the P5 carried by SOG just dropped from $429 to $395; add $15 for a handpicked firearm. The ad states: "These pistols are beautiful! 100% satisfaction guaranteed! Or ... your money back!" That's a good price for a great firearm, friends. You'll have to pay for shipping and alert your your favorite FFL, but you are getting the real deal. They come with two 8-round magazines, adjustable rear sights, cleaning rod, manual, holster, and a hard plastic case that sports the Walther banner. :)
 

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When a distributor drops the price of a previously offered surplus lot, that's generally because the initial price was pegged too high for the overall condition of the guns in the lot, and dealers were not reordering fast enough to recover the investment within an acceptable period of time.

Unless the lot has actually been sorted, graded and priced according to condition (which is a rarity nowadays because it requires skilled labor and adds to time, handling and cost), paying a "handpicked" surcharge is usually a waste of money. Those who have actually watched the typical warehouseman whose hands are doing the picking would, I think, agree.

M
 

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When a distributor drops the price of a previously offered surplus lot, that's generally because the initial price was pegged too high for the overall condition of the guns in the lot, and dealers were not reordering fast enough to recover the investment within an acceptable period of time.

Unless the lot has actually been sorted, graded and priced according to condition (which is a rarity nowadays because it requires skilled labor and adds to time, handling and cost), paying a "handpicked" surcharge is usually a waste of money. Those who have actually watched the typical warehouseman whose hands are doing the picking would, I think, agree.

M
It might also be that the gun design itself simply isn't popular. I mean it's around the same size as most hi-cap 9MMs, yet it only holds 8 rounds. It isn't really very concealable. It doesn't have the historical charisma of a WW2 P-38. I just don't think there is a big demand for this gun. I would hold off...they may end up lowering this thing to the price of the surplus P-1/P-38s they brought in.



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No argument with either MGMike's or Deputy's immediate obersvations above, except to add -- once again -- that the P5 is as reliable as Pacific Northwest rain, is a pleasure (no, a joy) to shoot, is as accurate as a handgun gets, is a mechanically marvel of superior engineering, and ... it's a Walther to boot.

Sure, I'd love to see them lower in price. Sure, I'd love to see a real, honest-to-god hand-selection sometime instead of the old first-one-I-can-grab mentality ... regardless of who is offering the selections. But make no mistake, folks: The P5 is the real deal. Run, don't walk. :D
 
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