Walther P38 or P1


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Toneman
June 28, 2008, 03:54 AM
Hi there I'm thinking about getting Walther P38 or P1,
what would be the difference between the two ?
so far I know P1 is the later edition with some changes like steel lug, slide dimensions,
Is P38 values more then P1?
It seems their sale price are about the same price,

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legion3
June 28, 2008, 04:25 AM
In some cases the P38 and the P1 are the same gun.

WW2 P38's were steel framed

Later some post war P38's were alloy framed

P1's are post war alloy framed P38's with some upgrades.

http://p38.50webs.com/history.html

A slightly modified version of the P38 called the P1 was adopted by the Bundeswehr in 1957 and remained in service until the early 1990s. The P1 had a receiver made of aluminum alloy, instead of steel to reduce weight. There was also a short-barreled version of the P1 called the P4.

An improved version of the P38, the Walther P5, was developed in the late 1970s and was adopted by the police forces of Rhineland-Palatinate and Baden-Württemberg.

rocinante
June 28, 2008, 08:11 AM
I have a 1976 P1 and like it. Later models have a hex bolt to help correct stress problems in the alloy frame.

bannockburn
June 28, 2008, 08:40 AM
Toneman

The one thing you might want to consider is that many of the late WWII P-38s were made under less than ideal conditions, using poorer quality materials, having to take manufacturing shortcuts, and were frequently made by slave laborers. Not the best conditions for a quality product, so have a qualified gunsmith check it out before heading to the range.
Post-war commercial and military P-38s and P-1s were made with alloy frames, and later had a hex head cross bolt installed to help take some of the stress off the frame. Quality though is not an issue with these later models. The P-4 model featured some design improvements to the original P-38 and had a slightly shorter barrel. Try the http://www.thep38forum.com/ for more specific and in-depth information on the P-38 pistols.

gilfo
June 28, 2008, 10:45 AM
I had my choice between a P38 and P1 cost was about 50 dollars less for the P1. I chose the P1 due to the upgrades. Besides the P38 does not have any more value in the recent crop that are available from the P1. Just my opinion of course.

ArmedBear
June 28, 2008, 10:49 AM
I have a 1978 P1. It's a great gun, and I have it loaded for HD right now.

A WW II P38 is worth some money, as a collector's item.

Postwar guns, in general, ought to be bought for shooting, not for what they're called. I'd buy the better ones (late models with hex bolt, better sights, etc.)

And I'm kicking myself for not buying one in 99% condition for $250 a few weeks ago. It's even nicer than the one I've got, which cost me $260.:)

Toneman
June 28, 2008, 11:37 AM
Oh so P38 is steel framed

P1 is alloy framed & different slide etc... etc...

I think it is better go with P1 is that right?
I'm just going to take it to the range & that's all,
For under $300.00 for 9mm I think it is good value besides the Sig P6/225 ( I already have two:D )

bannockburn
June 28, 2008, 12:10 PM
Toneman

Post-war commercial P-38s are alloy framed; WWII issue P-38s were made of steel. The post-war military P-1s make for a great range pistol, and are priced right for their market.

lechiffre
June 28, 2008, 01:57 PM
some points:

1.p1 is just a german government designation for p38. like our m9 is a m92.


2.over time some changes were made the p38/p1 they include:
a.changing the sights from a u-notch thin post to a modern type bar-dot
b.changing the slide for added strength
c.adding a pin through the frame again for more strength

Onmilo
June 28, 2008, 05:38 PM
I like the P1 for lighter weight and the parkarized finish which is easier to maintain than polished blue.

Get the later version for the reasons stated.
http://www.fototime.com/83570F04F3724A9/standard.jpg
http://www.fototime.com/7F278DEE0801312/standard.jpg

bannockburn
June 28, 2008, 06:39 PM
Toneman

I've had several P-38s, P-1s, and P-4s; but this P-1 is one of my favorites. It was made in France by Manurhin and was part of an order for the West Berlin police force.
http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc231/buckeroobanzai/DSC02385.jpgv[/IMG]

Onmilo
June 28, 2008, 06:59 PM
You may notice the different front sight blade design, the thinner slide, and the lack of reenforcement hex bolt at the mid center of frame on bannockburn's P1.
His is the earlier version and mine is a later version from 1978.

Bannockburns pistol probably also has magazines that are marked as P-38 and mine came with magazines marked as P1 along with the national stock number.

bannockburn
June 28, 2008, 09:26 PM
Onmilo

Actually both of my mags are marked P-1, looking very much like the ones I've seen in P-1s made by Walther. But that may also be because it was issued to the West Berlin police force.

Onmilo
June 28, 2008, 10:19 PM
Very cool.
Do they have the NSN and are they marked with the Walther Banner or are they marked as Manhurin?
Just one L in my screen name. It stands for Milo,(my name), online.

bannockburn
June 28, 2008, 10:35 PM
Onmilo

They don't have any manufacturers name (like Walther or Manurhin), and no other markings except for P-1 and 9mm. But these two markings are identical to those found on mags with the Walther banner on them. Maybe they're just military surplus mags from a government contractor.

76shuvlinoff
June 29, 2008, 09:56 AM
Here's my P38, Dad brought it back near the end of WWII, still all factory and still shoots well. Has same two mags he acquired it with.

80636

ftierson
June 29, 2008, 01:30 PM
I have an early Manurhin P-1, which is essentially a P-38 with an aluminum frame. Some slight changes were made in the rear of the slide of the P-1 a little way along in it's production, but the early French produced P-1s simply used P-38 slides. Manurhin started production of the P-1 around about 1963.

The Manurhin P-1 that I have even sports the German eagle standing on swastika on the right side of the rear of the slide, so it's clear that the French were using left-over parts to produce the early P-1s.

And, since there's so much faking of Nazi markings these days, I should mention that I purchased this P-1 over 20 years ago and it's clear that the waffenampt is original...

Forrest

bannockburn
June 29, 2008, 05:16 PM
ftierson

Indeed it seems that Manurhin was somewhat cost conscious when it came to reusing some of their parts. My P-1, which was used by the West German police, has two proofmarks on the right side of the slide. It turns out they are Portuguese proof marks, as though this slide was probably a contract overun part that Manurhin decided to use to fulfill another contract order with.
Also interesting is that when the French captured the Mauser Werke factory in April of 1945, they almost immediately started to begin producing P-38s from remaining parts they found at the factory. These were called SVW45 P-38s, after the Mauser wartime code which had been byf, and was changed to SVW in late December, 1944. Eventually the French produced 6000 more pistols the following year, designating them as SVW46. At some point in 1946, protests from the Soviet Union regarding the post-war division of captured German factories, forced the French to end production of the P-38 pistols.

lechiffre
July 1, 2008, 12:08 AM
The Manurhin P-1 that I have even sports the German eagle standing on swastika on the right side of the rear of the slide, so it's clear that the French were using left-over parts to produce the early P-1s.


i remember reading that these were fakes stamped by their u.s. importer or distributer.


also the p-1 designation did not come until the early 60's,so that would be at least 15 years after the end of the war. given that i think left over parts would have been used up by then

ftierson
July 1, 2008, 02:47 AM
Originally posed by lechiffre
i remember reading that these were fakes stamped by their u.s. importer or distributer.

also the p-1 designation did not come until the early 60's,so that would be at least 15 years after the end of the war. given that i think left over parts would have been used up by then

You forced me to dredge my P1 out of the safe...:)

Whether the waffenampt is real or not is somewhat irrelevant to me, since I bought the gun from a distributor and there was certainly no mention of the waffenampt before I bought it.

I just examined the side of the slide pretty closely, and the waffenampt looks real to me (in other words, not 'recently' added).

There are two marks on the right side of the slide immediately in front of the serrations at the rear. The top one has an indistinct crown over something. The lower one has what first appear to be crossed cannons with a numeral 3 between the top parts of the 'barrels.' Upon closer examination, the 'barrels' look more like map cases or rolled parchment documents, or something similar. The waffenampt appears just to the right of the upper mark. It looks original but, obviously, it could be a fake.

Why anyone would have bothered to take such care to do such a good job of faking it way back then is another question.

As I mentioned above, Manurhin began manufacturing P1 pistols in 1963. The one that I have has a very thinly annodized aluminum frame without the reinforcing hex bolt and has a standard, original type P-38 slide without the later firing pin/cocking indicator change. The slide is marked (on the left side) MANUFACTURE DE MACHINES DU HAUT-RHIN (in two lines) followed by the Manurhin 'crest' (with 'Made in France' underneath), followed by PISTOLET P1 over '9mm x 19', followed by the last four digits of the SN. All numbers on the gun match, SN 2288xx, and the condition is near new.

The importer's mark is A.E.CO over N.Y.C., and is found on the right side of the frame above the front of the trigger.

For what it's worth...

Forrest

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