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Old September 17, 2013, 05:43 AM   #1
spacecoast
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A couple of P38s

I might have an opportunity to buy these and am interested in approximate values. I don't have any history on them other than they are very likely to be 1950s vintage or earlier. The one with the red grips has a very nice black holster that also holds an extra magazine. Both looked to be in 90% or better and excellent mechanically.



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Old September 17, 2013, 09:36 AM   #2
dajowi
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I recently saw a used P38 in a LGS. It was in beautiful condition. He only wanted $400. I don't know if that helps. But I was sure surprised to see it there.
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Old September 17, 2013, 09:40 AM   #3
Herr Walther
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Both appear to be wartime examples. I need better photos to tell you what you have there.

Detailed photo of the slide without the flash reflection for both P.38's and a shot of the other side too.
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Old September 17, 2013, 12:12 PM   #4
spacecoast
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Herr Walther -

Thanks for replying, I wish I had better pics but this is all I have for now. In the future I will get some better ones and post them. Unfortunately I was on a trip when I saw these and won't be back to see them until the holidays.

I posted these on the P38 forum as well, and have done some more research on my own, and believe that the black-gripped gun is a "byf 42" or "byf 43", manufactured by Mauser. However, the slide and frame numbers do not appear to match - 5346 vs. 5826 (hard to tell for sure). The 5XXX serial number appears to make it a 1943 gun, but the date on the slide sure appears to be 42.

Question - If the slide and frame numbers do not match, how much does that affect the value? Is 50% too much of a penalty? I realize it becomes a shooter at that time, I'm just looking for a fair number to offer.

The other may be a "cyq" manufactured by Spreewerk. That one does appear to have matching frame and slide numbers (again, hard to tell).

I wish I would have known more about what to look for when I had my hands on these, next time I see them I will for sure.

Last edited by spacecoast; September 17, 2013 at 12:40 PM.
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Old September 21, 2013, 07:33 PM   #5
SFsc616171
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re: A couple of P38s

Those are SO pretty!

And, oh do they ever, bring memories back of cold foggy nights, lined trench coats and nice fedoras, Eastern European dialects - before my ears went too bad, and 'folks on the other side', that still knew what the word acquaintence, meant.
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Old September 23, 2013, 09:43 AM   #6
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It would be nice to own a wartime P38! I can't accurately help with price other than to say the mixed parts easily could reduce the price by 50%. If you're more into shooting than collecting it's a great way to get a byf (Mauser). (Be sure the frame is steel, not post-war aluminum alloy though.)

Mixed parts post-war P1s and P38s go for $300-400 so I expect a mixed wartime P38 might start around $600, a mixed parts P08 Luger shooter can start around $800 so I'm just splitting the difference.
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Old September 23, 2013, 02:52 PM   #7
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I'm sort of in the hunt myself, and I'd expect to pay around $500 for a wartime "mix master" in very good condition.
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Old September 23, 2013, 07:44 PM   #8
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I paid $400 for an AC42 (Walther) several years ago (maybe 10).

Mixed part#s lower collector value (though can still be historically accurate).

Another thing that lowers the collector value is import markings. One does find WWII production matching P.38s with import marking. This puts them on a different price level, to a collector, than a bona fide war trophy/bringback gun.

One thing that surprised me, when I did get my own P.38, it ejects to the left!
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Old September 23, 2013, 08:19 PM   #9
TxFlyFish
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This is usually a good starting point
http://www.gunbroker.com/All/BI.aspx?Keywords=P38

http://www.p38guns.com/Walther.htm


I would pick a p1 w hex screw and thicker slide for plinking but pick a clean p38 for safekeeping
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Old September 23, 2013, 08:24 PM   #10
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AMP it's not as obvious with p38 open slide but the P5s have left ejection cutouts
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Old September 25, 2013, 11:23 AM   #11
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I did have some fun one time at an outdoor range with my P.38. Was getting rained on by brass from the shooter to my left, so I got out my P.38 and returned the favor.

When he realized what was going on, we had a nice chat, which included apologies, and while his was sincere, mine was a bit less so....
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Old September 25, 2013, 07:56 PM   #12
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I've re-examined my photos (I had to shrink them a bit to post here) and I think what I have pictured is
  • a byf42 with non-matching slide (5345) and frame (5826)
  • a cyq with matching slide and frame (1456 C)
I have no idea on the import markings (hopefully none) or the rest of the parts and whether or not they match, and won't know until I see them again, likely 3 months from now Hope to have more info then and potentially make a deal for them. I wouldn't mind having both a numbers-matching keeper and a mixed numbers shooter, not at all.

Last edited by spacecoast; September 26, 2013 at 06:54 AM.
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Old September 26, 2013, 12:35 PM   #13
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guns brought into the country after a certain date (68 I think) are required to have the importer's name & address marked on them (yet another BS gun law serving no practical purpose that I can see, other than to identify before or after the requirement).

usually they were stamped on the barrel, often the underside. Something to look for, next time you see the guns.

Most GI bringback pistols did not have the war trophy paperwork. Some did, but it has often become lost over the years. Most of the time, the GI's (or their commanders) didn't bother with the paperwork for a little thing like a pistol.

A wartime gun, with its papers is the top end value for collectors. A wartime production gun without bringback papers is the next step down in value. A wartime gun with an import stamp is a level lower in value. And so on, until you get to current commercial production (if any).
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