Gotta love German engineering!


Chuck R.
July 7, 2006, 08:29 PM
A few weeks ago I recieved a “Commercial” P08 Luger in 7.65 with matching numbers in very good condition that I had inherited a while back. Before passing, my uncle told me that it hadn’t been fired since before WWII, then as time went by he couldn’t even find ammo for it locally, so it just sat in his attic. Once I got the pistol, I cleaned it up as some of the old oil had turned to a varnish type substance. Other than the oil residue, the pistol appeared to function properly.

After checking with the guys on the reloading board, I ordered the right “stuff” to concoct my 1st .30 Luger reloads. Went on the light side to be safe even though I’d read that Lugers require stout ammo to function. Tonight I took the pistol out to my land to test fire it after doing a little fishing.

To make a long story short, it shoots! It not only shoots, but functioned flawlessly and hits to point of aim to boot. I’ve shot 9mm Lugers before, but never a .30 so I was surprised at how light the recoil is.

I estimate it was made about 1925 or so based on the SN. Just have to appreciate German craftsmanship.


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July 8, 2006, 01:33 AM
Congratulations! You are lucky to have such a treasure.

The Luger and the 7.65 cartridge were designed simultaniously.
The 9mm round didn't come along for a couple of years.
I think the .7.65 Luger cartridge is a much overlooked and underappreciated cartridge.

I'm sure you'll enjoy both the gun and tailoring the perfect ammo for it.

There were several commercial models imported.
There were many variations overall.
What's the barrel length of yours?
Dished or knurled toggle?
Grip Safety or no?
Stock lug or no?

One of the most popular is the American Eagle version.

Chuck R.
July 8, 2006, 08:10 AM

From what research I’ve done mine is an early commercial that was made up of some leftover WWI parts, IE the receiver date ring was ground of at the factory. It has:

3.85” Barrel
Knurled Toggle
Serrated front sight
Stock Lug
No grip safety

Definitely a post American Eagle.

This page pretty much covers it:


Michael Zeleny
July 8, 2006, 04:56 PM
Lugers are both more accurate and more reliable when chambered for the bottleneck 7.65x21mm cartridge. A well-worn commercial .30 Luger pistol is likely to put 8 bullets well within 5 centimeters at 50 meters, from a machine rest. This is comparable to the results obtainable with the best bullseye 1911 pistols.

The Luger magazine feed is designed like most .22 rimfire autoloaders, with cartridges located by riding the bullet nose on the forward slope inside the magazine body. Accordingly, for reloading it is important to maintain the original dimensions, especially as regards the overall length and bullet configuration. The Lugerforum ( is the best online resource for information about your Luger.

Chuck R.
July 11, 2006, 05:42 PM

Thanks for the info and the heads-up on the Luger Forum. That place is a wealth of information on loading for 7.65 Luger!

I’ve already searched and copied everything I could find.


July 11, 2006, 09:37 PM
I have never fired a Luger but they sure are sexy. When can we see some pictures? How does the .30 luger compare ballistically to the 9mm? I thought I read somewhere that the 9mm was developed by Georg Luger because during the military trials either the German Army or Navy wanted a larger caliber. Story was that Luger took the .30 and cut the bottleneck off and viola the 9mm parabellum (9mm luger, 9x19 whatever). All he had to do was modify the barrel but the magazines worked fine as is. I also thought I heard that when the Russians captured .30 Lugers they liked to rechamber them for the 7.62x25 tokarev round. I have never seen one of those before. I own a tokarev and really like that round. It's basically a souped up version of the old broomhandle mauser round. Enjoy your Luger, just don't shoot yourself in the leg or anything like that guy in Saving Private Ryan.

Michael Zeleny
July 11, 2006, 10:42 PM
It is generally impossible to rechamber a handgun designed around 7.65mm or 9mm Luger (9x19mm and 7.65x21mm) ammunition for 7.63 Mauser (7.63x25mm), owing to the greater overall length and higher chamber pressure of the Mauser round. Making the conversion in the opposite direction is fraught with difficulties in cycling the shorter Parabellum round even in the C96 platform, dimensionally unconstrained by a reciprocating slide.

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