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P4

I do not know of anything bad about a P4. It is essentially the last of the P.38 design. (P-5 IS the last but that is a separate type of pistol.) They stopped making the P4 in 1986. Some parts are not compatible with the P.38, like the locking block, the 'decocking' lever is not a conventional safety and maybe other things. The barrel is a little shorter. All in all, I believe it is a improvement. At least Walther thought so. All of the later P.38 improvements such as the hex bolt, the reinforced slide etc are incorporated into the P4. I suppose some parts might eventually be a problem as they only made 7400 of them. BTW, the export model is marked P lV, Those intended for police, army etc are marked P 4 . There were only 450 of the export pistols made. I have one of each and they are otherwise identical.Even tho there were relatively few made, the market is about the same with the P.38. That might change.
 

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I have built two or three hybrid P4/P38s utilizing P4 uppers and P38 lowers. If the P38 frame is a late one with the hex lug, the only way to tell for sure is by s/n. P4s will always have s/ns in the 600,000 range.

To construct these hybrids, some of the internal parts of the P38 lower must be replaced with P4 components, including the hammer; and of course everything must be properly refitted for correct functioning. The result is in fact a perfectly competent weapon, superior to a standard P38.

M

P.S. When I get around to it I might offer one for sale...
 

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Hi, I got my eyes set on a Walther P4. Before dishing out the money, should I watch out for anything in case it’s a fake? Thanks!
Due to the limited number, the P4 isn’t very common, but beyond the enjoyment of tinkering as described by Mike, it doesn’t offer much incentive to “fake” anything either. For that they don’t normally command high enough prices since the model is historically insignificant and not that well known.

It was a stopgap upgrade of the P1 introduced in 1975 when the successor model P5 was already being readied (first delivery 1978), and the recipient of the largest batch of P4’s, the border police (BGS; check for BMI stamp) adopted the Sig P6 in 1979.

That’s the reason why most surplus P4’s are in such excellent shape: They were withdrawn from service within a few years of being introduced.
 

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...... beyond the enjoyment of tinkering ... it doesn’t offer much incentive to “fake” anything ...

....
That is true. The only reason I assembled them is because I had several spare P4 uppers and a couple of P38s with cracked (and at the time irreplaceable) slides.

The P4 is a very handy pistol, and fixed most everything that was wrong with the P38.

M
 

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The P4 is a nice gun. Very well made and almost always in excellent shape. The barrel is 4" as opposed to the P1 which is 4.75". Bakersfieldkelley is right about the 2 different numbering schemes, with the "IV" version being very rare and therefore more expensive. I have bought several P4s and paid an average price around $650. You can get a nice P1 from Aimsurplus for less. As far as anyone faking a P4 I have never seen a faked one and don't know why anyone would bother to do that.
 
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