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Old June 7, 2010, 06:07 AM   #1
LafeHubert
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Luger .45 ACP

I am doing a bit of research for an author of fiction concerning the number of Luger pistols that were built in .45 ACP. I am speaking of built by DWM, not P08s modified at a later date. I have this from Wiki:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luger_P08_pistol

"In 1906 and 1907, the US Army held trials for a large-caliber semi-automatic. DWM provided two samples chambered in .45 ACP for testing. One of these two pistols is exhibited at the Norton Gallery, in Shreveport, Louisiana. After initial trials, DWM, Savage, and Colt were asked to provide further samples for evaluation. DWM withdrew for reasons that are still debated, though the Army did place an order for 200 more samples."

Do any of you know if this is correct? If two pistols were built and one is in Shreveport, were is the second? Was the US Army's order for 200 more samples ever filled, and if so, in what quantity? I once saw a Luger at an exibition in .45 ACP that had a US Army "American Eagle" either engraved or embossed on the circular receiver ring ahead of the chamber. Did I see a "knock off", or one of the 200 Lugers ordered by the US Army?

Your assistance will be appreciated. Anytime an author takes the time to ask a question about a firearm I want to applaud, as so many authors just make up what they lack in real information. If you can help it will be graciously appreciated. Inquiries as to the author's identity will not be answered, as the author likes to remain private about such matters until time of publication. The author always notes those who have helped in the creation on the dedication page. Hopefully one of us can provide what is needed. Thank you

Good Luck.
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Old June 7, 2010, 06:32 AM   #2
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There were two made by DWM.
One was sacrificed in the trials, the other is extant and was the backup.
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Old June 7, 2010, 09:05 AM   #3
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Someone was hand building replicas, some years ago, so you could have seen one of those. I remember hearing that somebody was going to make them, never saw one for sale or read anything further about it, but some TV show, on the History Channel perhaps, showed the .45 Lugers being made.
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Old June 7, 2010, 09:34 AM   #4
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Thats cool, I have never heard of a .45 luger before.


...Still prefer the 1911

I recently got to handle a luger, I was amazed at how hard it was to rack the action on one of those puppies. A combination of the awkwardness of the action, and the toughness of the slide spring. (Can you even call it a slide?)
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Old June 7, 2010, 09:39 AM   #5
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I have an old .45 ACP Luger in the safe. Are they rare or something?
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Old June 7, 2010, 09:42 AM   #6
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Do you mind posting some pictures?
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Old June 7, 2010, 10:51 AM   #7
Jim Watson
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.45 Luger No 4 has been illustrated in one of the Luger books.
DWM chief engineer Heinrich Hoffmann said not more than six were made.
The one at Norton is an unnumbered GL, but with a 3 on the magazine.
http://www.lugerforum.com/45Luger.html

The surviving US test gun changed hands last month for $430,000.
http://michaelbane.blogspot.com/2010...-at-price.html

A great long thread on the subject at
http://luger.gunboards.com/showthread.php?t=2040
It ran in 2004 and was revived in 2008. I doubt there is much new information.

Ralph Shattuck has a .45 carbine he will let you have for a million. The above thread has discussion of the liklihood that it is a conversion on a US test gun.
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Old June 7, 2010, 11:24 AM   #8
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Quote:
I have an old .45 ACP Luger in the safe. Are they rare or something?
Is that the one I swapped you for a Hi-Point?
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Old June 7, 2010, 01:09 PM   #9
roman3
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Quote:
DWM withdrew for reasons that are still debated, though the Army did place an order for 200 more samples."

Do any of you know if this is correct? If two pistols were built and one is in Shreveport, were is the second? Was the US Army's order for 200 more samples ever filled, and if so, in what quantity? I once saw a Luger at an exibition in .45 ACP that had a US Army "American Eagle" either engraved or embossed on the circular receiver ring ahead of the chamber. Did I see a "knock off", or one of the 200 Lugers ordered by the US Army?
The 200 order for US Army testing was not fulfilled.

Deutsche Waffen- und Munitionsfabriken (DWM) withdrew because it learned it was being awarded the German Army contract for its 9mm version of the pistol. They knew they would be plenty busy filling the German Empires orders.

Actually Georg Luger himself came over with at least 2 45ACP samples and tested them himself for the US Army. After he went back to Germany the US decided to ask for the 200 samples.

A excellent show on the luger and the 45 army tests was the A&E Story of the Gun Series show on the Luger.


The American eagle Lugers were originally in the 7.65x21mm or 30 luger caliber for earlier US Army tests. Several of those were used by US cavalry officers and the gun and the round were rejected as to weak and to small.
This led Luger to perhaps his most lasing invention the 9mm bullet. The German Navy first adopted the luger in 9mm for service.
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Old June 7, 2010, 01:55 PM   #10
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About 10+ years ago, I had an issue of Guns & Ammo that had a write-up about the .45 Luger. It cost the collector 2 million or there abouts and he was willing to let the G&A staff handle the gun and fire one mag of ammo through it. It was a pretty good read.
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Old June 7, 2010, 02:00 PM   #11
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Ah, speak of the devil......(so I was off by a million, it's been 10 years )

http://www.gunsandammo.com/content/m...-auction-block
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Old June 7, 2010, 04:14 PM   #12
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Yep, they were made but then pulled from trials. Lots of cool thinks all these guys are posting.
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Old June 7, 2010, 04:17 PM   #13
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Luger built 45 versions for the American market after their test trial was unsuccessful - While not uber-plentiful, they are around and have been selling for around $500 or so
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Old June 7, 2010, 04:30 PM   #14
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Could you point us to an advertisement for one of those?
Could you point us to an advertisement for ANY Luger in decent condition for $500?
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Old June 7, 2010, 04:43 PM   #15
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No kidding,,,

Quote:
Luger built 45 versions for the American market after their test trial was unsuccessful - While not uber-plentiful, they are around and have been selling for around $500 or so
Help me find some and I'll take five specimens,,,

I remember reading the article Brian48 is referring to,,,
I think the 2 million price is accurate.


.
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Old June 7, 2010, 04:55 PM   #16
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iirc in recent times someone was "producing" hand made 45auto versions of the p08....but they were pricey to say the least.
but there are only two original 45s, and one has not been seen since the trials.
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Old June 7, 2010, 06:21 PM   #17
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Quote:
Luger built 45 versions for the American market after their test trial was unsuccessful - While not uber-plentiful, they are around and have been selling for around $500 or so



Not! is the only thing that comes to mind. Certainly not DWM made 45 Lugers, maybe some other later custom made thing but not an original.

Last edited by roman3; June 7, 2010 at 11:44 PM.
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Old June 7, 2010, 06:31 PM   #18
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Quote:
Someone was hand building replicas, some years ago, so you could have seen one of those. I remember hearing that somebody was going to make them, never saw one for sale or read anything further about it, but some TV show, on the History Channel perhaps, showed the .45 Lugers being made.



http://www.nedbal.at/rarities.html
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Old June 7, 2010, 06:52 PM   #19
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This is interesting!

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/Vie...Item=173057830



I would like to find one of the Chinese 45 ACP Mauser Broomhandle copies! Allot cheaper.
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Old June 7, 2010, 06:56 PM   #20
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http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.aspx?Item=159799016

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Old June 7, 2010, 07:03 PM   #21
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An older gent I used to shoot with bought one last year from a shop in Michigan for that amount - Luger, 45 ACP, mint condition - they're out there, maybe he got lucky, but it was one nice gun..never got to fire it, just fondle it.................then again, this guy DID have a knack for having good deals drop in his lap, like a Beretta 12 SxS for $600.....................
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Old June 7, 2010, 09:41 PM   #22
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Very nice looking Luger.

Bad Request on the link! Corrected.

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/Vie...Item=159799016
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Old June 7, 2010, 10:27 PM   #23
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Martz Lugers

Martz (marz?) made a number of Lugers in .45acp. They were total custom guns, hand built, made by taking two 9mm Luger frames cutting them off center, and welding them back together, to widen the frame to take the .45acp. The rest of the parts were fabricated as scaled up Luger parts copies.

It is possible to find one of these guns, from time to time, but they are not DWM made .45acp Lugers.

According to one source I read many years ago (no ref., sorry) there were 5 Lugers made for the US Army tests. One was destroyed during the testing. One is in the hands of a collector. The other 3 are .....unknown.

This would seem to fit in with the info that "no more than 6 guns were made".

The missing guns might be lost forever. Or they might turn up someday. Colt SAA ser# 1 turned up a few years ago. A widow on Long Island had it as part of her late husband't collection, IIRC.

You never know.

Odds are, however, if you find a "genyuewine Luger" in .45 ACP, its a Martz or somebody else's labor of love, not a DWM trial piece.
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Old June 8, 2010, 12:11 PM   #24
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There was an article in either Guns or Guns & Ammo magazine from around 1960 about a man who was making one in .45 ACP but I don't remember if it was a modified P08 or made from scratch. Either way, it had an odd looking slab sided barrel. And do you realize that happened about halfway between today and when the P08 was introduced. They hadn't been out of production that long in 1960.
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Old June 8, 2010, 12:56 PM   #25
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It was about 1960 that Sidney Aberman let a gunzine writer shoot the real Army test .45 Luger. Said it worked great for a full box of ammo.

I know of the Wyatt-Imthurn .45 Luger conversion and the Martz two-into-one builds. Mike Krause tooled up to build repros of the test gun from scratch (also the .32 Baby Luger). He once said that he would build up to a hundred at $10,000 apiece but do not know his current status.
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