Someone bring back the Luger.


December 16, 2003, 05:49 PM
Just curious, but if all these companies, Kimber, Springfield, Para, Wilson, etc.... can manufactuer 1911s with the original design being done by Colt many years ago, why coudn't a company build copies of the Luger?

Today's Luger could have some cost saving techniques such as doing away with the individual numbering of all the parts.

So why couldn't this be done? Do people nowdays simply not like the Luger enough for a company to produce them again?

If you enjoyed reading about "Someone bring back the Luger." here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!
December 16, 2003, 06:15 PM
I believe some small company did just that a few years ago. I think I saw that also on "Tales of the Gun" on the History Channel (might be wrong - is that what prompted your question?) on their Luger episode (This episode aired today by the way) Might do a search and see what turns up.

I have a Luger brought back from the war by my grandfather. I think that even with modern manufacturing techniques, it would be pretty expensive to make given the number of parts.

December 16, 2003, 06:22 PM
Yes, I have seen the Tales of the Gun Luger episode numerous times. Everytime I see that episode it makes me want to buy a P-08.

With today's modern manufacturing techniques, I don't see how it could be that expensive to make a nice Luger style gun. I am not talking about making a cheap copy, but something with a MSRP of $800-900 bucks would be acceptable.

Black Snowman
December 16, 2003, 06:34 PM
I believe Stoeger makes a reproduction luger pistol but I can't find any good information from google, at least not any that isn't blocked by the firewall here at work. I've heard reproducitons are in the $900-1200 range.

December 16, 2003, 06:45 PM
I checked around for Stoeger and only found long guns on their website. Google turned up some .22 Luger stuff, but a .22 Luger does sound too good to me. If Stoeger makes a 9mm Luger that could be very interesting!

December 16, 2003, 08:12 PM
Sorry guys, but IMHO it's really not practical. The P.08 required a lit more intricate machining than the 1911 does, and even if many of the parts were made in MIM or cast you'd still be talking about $1500 a copy. I highly doubt it could be done for under $1000 unless the QC was really sloppy. Who wants to pay that much for a cheap MIM copy of a pistol that is only of value as a collectible anyways? The only reason why I have a P.08 is because of its history. I'd certainly never want to have to use it for defense.

The only reason why the reproduction WW1 and WW2 1911's are practical is because the same basic gun is still in constant production. Even then, a lot of folks claim you can almost buy an original for what the repros cost.

December 16, 2003, 08:16 PM
Agree that mfg a Luger would be cost prohibitive today. It takes a good mechanic to make a working replica of the M1911A1; it would take an artiste to make a working replica of a P08. Hand fit, super heat treat, etc. JMTC

December 16, 2003, 08:28 PM
There have been replica Lugers.

Mauser/InterArms made several models in the 1970s.

Mitchell Arms, and Stoger both sold the same stainless steel replica as late as a year or so ago.

The Mauser replicas were expensive, and are now collectible.

The Stoger/Mitchell stainless was/is available as a 4" standard or 6" "Navy Model".
It's available in bright stainless or a blackened stainless.
It was sold as the "American Eagle Luger".

Since Stoger bought the rights to the Luger name back in the 1930's, ONLY Stoger can put the Luger name on a gun. The Mauser guns were sold as the "Parabellum".

The Mitchel/Stoger was cheaper due to the use of castings.

The guns usually don't make it due to high prices in the case of the Mauser, and plain lack of sales in the Stoger case.

December 17, 2003, 09:05 AM
Dfariswheel is correct about the trademark "Luger." I've even seen Luger brand shotguns from Stoeger. ;) The actual name of the pistol is "Parabellum." But we Americans have always called it "Luger," as I shall continue.

As my fading memory tells me there were a couple or three sets of machinery set up for making Lugers and all real McCoys were produced on those machines. Ludwig Loewe built the machinery and manufactured guns with his firm DWM and later BKIW. A set was used at Erfurt Arsenal to make Lugers. A set was sold to the Swiss who built the .30 for their armed forces. Thru time and the various vicissitudes, one set ended up with Simson? It was taken away from them because they were Jews, IIRC. Loewe was also Jewish and his BKIW was parted out, IIRC. A set was transferred to Krieghoff, IIRC. The DWM/BKIW set was transferred to Mauser, IIRC. So the same equipment made all the P08s, Parabellums, Lugers.

BTW, once you have examined and fired a real Parabellum, the cast clones would have little appeal, imho.

December 17, 2003, 12:23 PM
According to the "Tales of the Gun" episode, there's a company somewhere in the US that's planning on making copies of the Luger in .45ACP. Price is estimated to be $15,000:what: Takes "collectible" to a whole new level.:D

Jim K
December 17, 2003, 04:01 PM
It seems to me that one maker is selling virtually hand-made copies at around $15-20K. Why is no one tooling up and mass producing them? For the simple reason that THERE IS NO MARKET. Mauser and Interarms tried, believing that the market existed and found out that, like other "bring back the x" cries, the "demand" was all wish list and hot air. When offered the chance to buy a new Luger at a decent price, the potential customers vanished.

One problem is simply that original Lugers, in reasonable condition, are still available for $400-700, and they have (or are seen to have) "historical value". No new manufacture could compete, no matter how many production shortcuts were taken.


December 17, 2003, 07:15 PM
As I recal it was very fussy and judging by the videogames its featured in-VERY ugly.

Any replicas of the 8mm Nambu? perfect for dropping and accidental discharges!

December 17, 2003, 08:56 PM
".....judging by the video games it's featured in....."


Jim K
December 17, 2003, 09:20 PM
With good ammunition and magazines, the Luger is not that bad, but it was never a reliable as the Model 1911 .45 pistol. It was (and would be) expensive to make, costing about twice what the P.38 cost, which was one reason the Germans went to the latter pistol.

As for the 8mm Nambu, I don't know that it is any more prone to accidental discharge than any other pistol; sear engagement is quite long and the safety is positive even though awkward.


December 17, 2003, 09:24 PM
Jim Keenan said: One problem is simply that original Lugers, in reasonable condition, are still available for $400-700... Problem? What problem? :D Hell, go buy a REAL one and shoot the bejeebers out of it. :cool:

December 17, 2003, 09:54 PM
As for the 8mm Nambu, I don't know that it is any more prone to accidental discharge than any other pistol; sear engagement is quite long and the safety is positive even though awkward.

Not the Nambu, but another WW2 Japanese pistol had an exposed sear that could fire the pistol just by accidentally pressing on it. I don't remember what exact model it was, however.

December 17, 2003, 10:43 PM
I'd like something like a Ruger MKII in 9mm.

Apparently it would be too rough on the action though from what I'm told.

December 17, 2003, 10:54 PM
I have always wanted a Luger. I have no idea why I never bought one. As mentioned, they arn't all that expensive; I have certainly spent enough on this hobby over the last 20 years to buy a safe full of Lugers but for some reason was never in the right place at the right time to buy one and never made the effort to hunt one down.
The first handgun I ever fired was a Luger brought back by one of our neighbors when I was a kid.

Last summer if fired several mags out of a stainless Luger. I broke all my personal rules of etiquette. I saw a guy shooting one, walked over and asked him if I could give it a try. I normally wouldn't even consider talking to someone else who is trying to shoot, let alone ask to touch one of their guns. But, I was seriously considering asking if there was a price that would make him let it go. However, when I shot it, it was a big disappointment. It malfunctioned several times per magazine. I don't remember if I was hitting anything with it.

Double Naught Spy
December 18, 2003, 06:14 AM
At $400-600+, used Lugers are really cheap for the kind of craftsmanship it took to originally produce them. Reproducing them today in comparable quality would make custom 1911s seem inexpensive!

December 18, 2003, 06:55 AM
And where are folks finding decent Lugers for $400-600 bucks??,, and all have Lugers in the $1,000 and up price range. Nothing much cheaper.....

December 18, 2003, 07:35 AM
Talk about a straight line design: the Luger kicks straight back into your forearm, unlike the standard Colt/Browning type that rares back. Quite a revelation that a guy more than a century ago built something (albeit flawed) so advanced. Also introduced the world standard for automatic pistol cartridges, the 9mm Luger.

December 18, 2003, 12:53 PM
The $400-$600 Lugers are usually mismatched parts guns. I don't own one, but from what I have been told, they work fine. They are just not collector pieces, but perfectly adequate for the guy that likes the Luger and also wants to shoot it.
I see guns in this price range now and then and I am not spending much time looking.

December 19, 2003, 05:57 AM
Yeah that's what a dealer might GIVE you for yours, but whats the actual price?

As far as I can tell, Mauser has made them on and off again. They didn't just throw out the machines and tooling, there may well be another run of Lugers.

Hell you guys are willing to pony up $2500 for a Sig 210 or a Les Baer, why not for a Luger?

I'll tell you why. They are finicky, it's a 9mm and it only holds 8 shots.

December 19, 2003, 06:43 AM
....there are Lugers.....and then there are....

December 20, 2003, 03:37 AM
... and then there are....


December 20, 2003, 09:28 AM
This place sells "shooters":

December 20, 2003, 09:42 AM
Just as a fun-to-shoot gun, and maybe for the occasional rabbit, I'd like an artillery model in .357 SIG.

Well, yes, of COURSE with a stock and snail drum magazine!


December 20, 2003, 10:13 AM
Amen on the Ruger MKII 9mm. I've got one (.22) and have always thought of it as my prettiest piece. Now if only she had some punch...

As far as the $15K Luger repros go, they are supposed to be exact authorized reproductions of the 2 .45s Luger made for the US military prior to WW2. The Springfield Armory said they were great but just turned them down. One is presumed destroyed. The other original just sold for $800K but has been appraised at $1M. I believe the $15K price tag is more for the limited run (400 copies maybe?) rather than the expense of machining. At least thats what History Channel said...

Walt Sherrill
December 20, 2003, 12:40 PM
I've got an older Luger (one part not matching) that was captured by the Soviets during WWII.

Its a great-shooting gun, but because they were, in effect, basically hand-fit weapons, anything that needs repair also need "fitting." I've replaced a lot of stuff over the past five years. The trigger on mine is superior -- somebody's handy work (not mine.)

Very accurate, great conversation piece. Lots of fun. But magazines are a pain -- and finding ones that work is difficult. (Getting a couple of new Mec-Gars seems to have solved feeding problems.)

Just don't expect the reliability you might be used to with more modern guns (or with an older 1911.)

Sights SUCK and its almost impossible to do anything about them.

December 20, 2003, 09:28 PM
I bought a VOPO rework Luger about six or seven years ago when they were coming into the US. Its been 100% flawless and VERY accurate. I would use it as a carry piece with ball ammo, no questions asked. Yes, its that good.

September 2, 2008, 07:32 PM
Here are some Luger ideas, maybe to explain why they still hold interest.

Lugers, as made in the first half of the last century, are pieces of art as well as functional. The form strictly follows function, according to the relevant art precept, and yet that utilitarian form is graceful in appearance and its mechanical operation.

Consider its styling, timeless, still beautiful after a century. Not many guns can stand up to this test of time. In fact, the reputation some hold of the Luger being finicky has to be seen in the context of a gun between 50 and 100 years old, still functoning. Where is a Glock going to be in 50 years, if anyone cares ?

A Luger must have the proper balance between its mainspring and magazine spring. Lugers that have been maintained, or at least left alone, for the years between, and have their springs in balance and the fit adjusted on their parts, can do very well. Most of the parts can be adapted from gun to gun, with a bit of fitting.

I have an Erfurt barrel and slide functioning perfectly on a DWM frame, with some modern reproduction parts in between, and make up an excellent shooting gun. Yes a Luger does have a slide of sorts, part of the barrel extension slides back on the frame while the breech is still locked, until chamber pressure is dropped, and the ramps have kicked the knee joint upward past their over-center alignment.

In fact, a Luger achieves a simpler and easier to understand mechanical design than any other autoloader, with all its linear trigger and sear train accessible and visible with just a simple field strip. No tools are needed, the only screws in a Luger are the two grip screws. Everything else is interlocked or pinned. A luger's firing pin can be removed with no tools, in just a few seconds, and replaced just as fast.
The safety is amazingly simple and efficient, and easy to understand. A Luger is a piece of art in its contrivance. It takes alot of expensive maching of the parts to have this ingenious machine work, and the gun was not the ideal war gun, as its inherent necessary precision was not easy to maintain in the mud and mess of wars.

The action itself, inhereted from the Maxim maching gun design, has lighter parts than a traditional slide operated semi-auto, and so cycles faster.

One reason, besides its inherent precision, for the Lugers accuracy is the recoil motion directly backward of the barrel/slide along the frame rails, without any ramping, tilting, or wiggling links or blocks.

I have six Lugers from Germany's Imperial era, all presently functioning fine when used with healthy magazines. The oldest one is a 1910.

The stainless steel Lugers made in Texas for Stoeger and Mitchell are not hardened properly or sufficiently in the critical areas needed to keep working for very long. I had three, trying to make at least one of them a usable reliable gun, but they were tearing themselfves up with each shot, and their workmanship and milling was sloppy compared to the quality maintained by every German manufacturer, over their 40 some odd years of production. Many of these stainless steel parts are not repaceable or interchangable with original Luger parts, as well.

It is easy to make the Lugers sucky sights work better, if you have a shooter you that is appropriate to modify, by just filing out, with a good jewelers file, the tiny rear V-notch to a wider U or square notch. Be patient, the metal in the rear link with its integral rear notch is extremely hard, and will take awhile to file out, if you want a good job. I've done that on three of my six Lugers, for the shooters. The front sight is just drift-adjustable, and replaceable with different height sights.

Everyone thinks Nazi when they see a Luger, but the gun has better origins in its American and Imperial German heritage, and was first in production long before the Nazi era.
THe P38 - now that's the Nazi gun, and by the way, the direct design ancestor of our present military Berettas.

September 2, 2008, 10:31 PM
The nambu mentioned as having am exposed sear (I've got one laying around here somewhere) is the 6.5mm IIRC, I've even got some ammo laying around that someone made out of necked down .380 brass, not that I'm about to go fire the thing. Real wallhanger.

Anyway, as far as the luger, there are plenty of real ones about to satisfy current demand. A new production one just won't cut it, c'mon, a 9mm pistol in todays saturated market of super-reliable 9's with a price point near 2k? Under 1k will buy you any number of other combat capable 9mm handguns, and as a bonus, they won't bounce brass onto your head or down the back of your collar either.

The luger is an interesting gun, but stand it next to a simple fighting weapon like the 1911 design, and it just doesn't make grade. Folks will still buy em, but I don't see a new market springing up.

September 2, 2008, 10:48 PM
My God - this is a FIVE YEAR thread resurrection... maybe the longest I've witnessed myself... awesome :)

September 2, 2008, 10:58 PM
The price in 1994 was $695.

September 3, 2008, 11:55 PM
'resurrection compliments of Hendersonville, TN

September 4, 2008, 12:03 AM
By the way, Krieghoff of Germany has put in limited production a run of 200 new P08 commercial Lugers, produced on new tooling, but identical in every respect to originals, resuming serial numbers from their 1940's sequence where they were curtailed by the end of the war. They had a price listed at about $17,545 USD, as of posting date.

Phil DeGraves
September 4, 2008, 01:05 PM
Nambu Type 14 in 8mm Nambu was the inspiration for the Ruger MK1 Auto Pistol. The Type 94 Nambu had the long sear in the side of the frame that could be fired without pulling the trigger. It is one of the worst designed auto pistols in history.

If you enjoyed reading about "Someone bring back the Luger." here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!