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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone have any experience in turning a P1 or P38 into a P38K? Finding a P38K is difficult at best and #^(@#^ expensive ... if, in fact, you can locate one for sale. At the same time, Dan's Ammo, Simpson's Ltd., and other sites are offering fairly wonderful prices on top-of-the-line P1s and post-war P38s; you can get an unfired P1 shipped for $250, for example, from Dan's. So the question becomes, what's the possibility of converting one of these puppies, strictly for plinking/shooting purposes?

Sure, the end result wouldn't be a collectible, but it sure would be a hell of a conversation-starter on the range ... and likely would make an interesting shooter. I don't think that shortening the barrrel would present much of a challenge to a qualified gunsmith; the trick might come in reattaching the front sight. Then again, a host of other issues may be involved.

Thoughts? Ideas? Suggestions? Photos?

It's not a question of becoming the man from U.N.C.L.E. It's rather a question of being armed like the man from U.N.C.L.E. :)
 

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I'm sure that others will chime in here. From what I have been told, the P1 & P4 barrels are lined and you can not just simply cut them. But, then again, many have done it. I have an old post war alloy P38 which was done this way and the front site was soldered onto the frame.

Every so often there is a gun dealer advertising in Shotgun News who makes and sells these conversions. I believe they sold for $450 - $500.

They are fun to shoot and loud!http://www.militarygunsupply.com

Seems like they do not have any in stock currently.

Do a search here, lots of talk about it too - http://forums.p38forum.com/forums
 

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You can't produce a P38K by starting with a P38/P1. P38ks were built on the P4 platform.

Even if you chop a P4, you'll just have a "bubbaed" gun, analogous to a sporterized military rifle, and the result is too clunky to ever be a satisfactory carry piece. After the novelty wears off, you probably won't be able to recover your investment, so what's the point?

M
 

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If you take a P4 to make a fake P38K though, people might not notice it is a fake as fast as on a P38/P1 conversion
The P38k had like the P4 a decocker only and no removeable top cover...
also there is differences in the locking blocks on the P38 to P4/P38K if I remember correctly
 

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Discussion Starter #5
That's good advice, gentlemen. Many thanks for the comments and observations. And by all means keep them coming if you have more. The beauty of these boards is the living/breathing expertise that exists at all levels and on so many topics.

I have a like-new P4 but wouldn't dream of chopping it up; that would be a shootable offense, I think. After a first day on the range with the new P1, it's also unlikely that I'd allow someone to tear into it, either: The doggone thing performed flawlessly and was dead-on accurate -- pretty amazing, in fact.
(The only reason to even consider this experiment is the current low cost and easy availibility of the P1 and/or the post-war P38.)

Looks like it's either back to the drawing boards ... or to the checkbook for a real, honest-to-god P38k. Sadly, and unlike the P1, those rascals don't grow on trees at Dan's Ammo. :)
 

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If you want the looks only....
buy yourself a parts kit or just the barrel and have a smith attach the front sight to the barrel since it will need work anyways..... easier and you can swap the barrels
 

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If you take a P4 to make a fake P38K though, people might not notice it is a fake as fast as on a P38/P1 conversion
The P38k had like the P4 a decocker only and no removeable top cover...
also there is differences in the locking blocks on the P38 to P4/P38K if I remember correctly
The P4's locking block is indeed different from the P38's. It is usually inscribed "P4" for identification. The differences relate only to its interface with the slide; I believe the frame interface is the same, though I have never compared the drawings. However, I have assembled complete P4 uppers on P38 frames that function very well, though the locking blocks must be selectively fitted as is normally the case with P.38s. For this conversion a few frame-mounted parts must also be changed out for the P4 versions (inter alia, the hammer and release piece), but it is feasible. The result is a Frankenstein Walther, but back in the days when replacement P38 slides were unobtainable, it was an avenue to restore a cracked-slide P.38 to shooting condition.

M
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Man From U.N.C.L.E. P-38 made from a military WW2 P-38. C'mon Searcher...you KNOW you want one ;)

You bet I want one. I mean, doesn't everybody? :D

Actually, I'd really love to get a real P38k. It's just that the things are rare, the prices are out of sight, and the budget is stretched from the PPS, and the P5, and the P88c, and the P4, and the PPK, and the ...
 

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