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I know nothing about the market for the Jubiläumspistolen. If that kind of thing tickles your fancy, maybe the gun is worth 3500 or more.

But the "unicorn" in the first post looks simply like an ordinary LNIB P4, US export version, with fancy wood stocks and white paint in the stampings.

It was apparently worth the 2000 to someone. But the seller's description is a bit hyped. "Brilliant piece of post-war history"? Yep.

PS: So this is getting interesting.

The HH = 1977 proof code struck me as odd, so just out of curiosity I checked Dieter's book. The P38 IV marked guns were, at least according to him, all made in 9/1981, and the starting serial was 606 968. So this gun's 6065xx is several hundred too low.

So the serial does not match the proof year, and neither fit in the P38 IV range. Since this supposedly comes from a respectable collector's estate, might there be a story behind this which the seller did not understand or know how to explain, which would indeed make this a unicorn?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
My unicorn comment was relating to the prior owner. For a collector of his books, one of his PERSONAL P38s would be a unicorn....


We are proud to bring another brilliant piece of post-war history to GunBroker for a real NO RESERVE, PENNY START auction. We were able to secure a few more items from the Warren Buxton Estate for our amazing GunBroker customers. Mr. Buxton is considered to be the world's preeminent P38 researcher and author. His books, The P.38 Pistol Volumes I, II, and III are must-own pieces of firearm material. If you ever have the opportunity to purchase any of them, seize the moment.
 

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My unicorn comment was relating to the prior owner. For a collector of his books, one of his PERSONAL P38s would be a unicorn....
....
Ah, yes. I missed that angle.

I’m still intrigued by the inconsistencies of the gun, though. I’m aware of Mr. Buxton’s books, although I’m not familiar with them since I was under the impression they dealt mostly with the wartime P38, not a particular interest of mine. Did he write about newer guns like this one?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Ah, yes. I missed that angle.

I’m still intrigued by the inconsistencies of the gun, though. I’m aware of Mr. Buxton’s books, although I’m not familiar with them since I was under the impression they dealt mostly with the wartime P38, not a particular interest of mine. Did he write about newer guns like this one?

I've yet to see the last volume of his work, it's possible he covered the evolution of the P38 there. Can't say one way or the other.
 

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I was under the impression they dealt mostly with the wartime P38, not a particular interest of mine. Did he write about newer guns like this one?
Volume One of Buxton covers the development of the MP, AP, and HP into the P.38 and its wartime production at Walther. Volume Two covers wartime production at Spreewerk and Mauser. Volume Three is subtitled "International Distribution Post 1945 and Addendum to Volumes 1 and 2".

In the preface to Volume Three he discusses the possibility of two more volumes : one on the postwar Ulm P38 and one on holsters and accessories. These two proposed volumes were never published and I don't know if he had even begun work on them.

There have been many books on the wartime pistols. I think there is enough interest in the postwar production to justify its own book.
 

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In the preface to Volume Three he discusses the possibility of two more volumes : one on the postwar Ulm P38 and one on holsters and accessories. These two proposed volumes were never published and I don't know if he had even begun work on them.
...
Warren had written enough of the manuscript for Volume 4 that he had reached discussion of the P5, and sent me some draft pages to review. But I don't believe he ever completed it. I last spoke to him about a year before his death; at that time he was sidetracked on some other project--I think a book on Olympia pistols (memory fuzzy now). He cheerfully conceded that his writing style was lodged in the spectrum from Mired in Minutiae to Utterly Impenetrable, but he stubbornly resisted finding an editor to help him finish them.

M
 

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Thank you all for the info about the books and range of Warren Buxton's expertise.

All of the above certainly should warrant a pistol from his estate to be legitimate and valuable (beyond the mere fact that it was owned by him), so there has to be an explanation for the markings. I messaged Dieter; hopefully he'll get a chance to look at the auction and comment.
 

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I heard back from Dieter. He says Walther’s company records only support what’s in the book: 452 pistols for Interarms with the P38 IV slide from September 1981, 606968 to 607419. He says that he may have to correct that.

Interarms was a major customer, and I think it’s entirely possible this is a special sample. Maybe Walther tried to sell the idea to Interarms in 1977, and they didn’t bite until 1981. That might also explain why Warren Buxton considered it unusual enough to have in his collection.
 

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I heard back from Dieter. He says Walther’s company records only support what’s in the book: 452 pistols for Interarms with the P38 IV slide from September 1981, 606968 to 607419. He says that he may have to correct that.
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QUOTE]

This thread illustrates that even factory records are rarely 100% complete or 100% correct.

By now it should be obvious that some of the P4 pistols produced beginning in 1975 were diverted by Walther to commercial sale. By 1977 Interarms was importing them in small quantities. It's unclear how these were marked, but at least some (Buxton's is typical) were marked "P.38IV". There were not many, but they are hardly "unicorns".

It is noteworthy (and was mentioned here on the forum some years ago) that the last deliveries of P.38IV to Interarms (in the 607xxx range) inexplicably lacked a serial number on the frame. This was not immediately discovered, and some guns went out the door with serial numbers only on the slide and barrel. Those remaining were bundled off to a local engraver with a pantograph machine to have the number added.

The numerals were cut through the black anodize; the result looked neat, so they were left "in the white" -- which is a tip-off to collectors of this tidbit of history.

It's also a good reason NOT to mindlessly fill in markings with white paint.

M
 

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P4 numbers

My P lV is 607251 (the series imported by Interarms), the other P 4 is 601004 dated 11/75. There are many fewer 'P lV's than P4's These #'s seem to fit Dieter's book
 

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On Gun Broker, Item #785488163, HessGuns. Another Walther P IV excellent with box serial # 606540 Interarms import. Still below Herr Marschall's listing as is the Buxton's listing.
 
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