"New" Luger


April 16, 2013, 06:24 PM
After about 20 years of wanting one I finally picked one up at a gunshow in really nice condition. No, it's not an original; rather, it's a Stoeger stainless "replica" 9mm Luger produced in the mid '90s. I really just wanted a shooter, not a collector's piece. So far I've only put 20 rounds thru it; and it likes cheap Walmart Federal, but not my handloads. Since Lugers can often be very selective with the types of ammo it likes, I'm pleased that it eats up regular 115 gr. ammo. My handloads turned out to be a little shorter than the Fed. factory 9mm. So I adjusted my seater die to make mine as long as the Fed. and will try them again soon.

Anyway, for $725 I'm very happy with my purchase. :) WB

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April 16, 2013, 06:48 PM
Glad you were able to score a Luger. They are unique firearms. IIRC the Stoegers were not produced very long, so it is great you found one.

I remember when they were in production, and at the time I had recently bought one of the surplused P-08's that were coming in from Russia and former combloc countries. Mine is a 1941 Mauser with matching numbers but it was re-arsenalled (re-blued) by the Russians so it is of no collector value and just a shooter. I had it out last week and ran 50 flawless rounds through it. Some Federal, some of my re-loads with conical bullets, and some jacketed hollow points. All fed and functioned 100%, and they are accurate pistols.

April 17, 2013, 02:16 PM
Be aware that the Luger magazine works like many 22 LR magazines in that the bullet nose rides up the front of the magazine. This makes it sensative to OAL of the cartridge. For some unknown reason today's SAAMI max OAL is the same as the original 9 mm Parabellum MIN OAL! That's a substantial portion of the Luger's reputation for indifferent rteliability right there!

If handloading, load the OAL a bit long.

See the Pitole Parabellum forum for advice on reloading.

The Stoeger labeled stainless Lugers take a non-standard magazine designed to take 40 S&W as well as the 9 mm, but the 40 S&W idea never came to fruition.

April 17, 2013, 06:31 PM
The Luger is undeniably a classic. They were designed for the 124 gr. 9mm bullet and require relatively hot ammo to function properly.

Here's an "S/42" made in 1937 (s/42 is code for Mauser) that's in reasonable shape.




This is a 1914 DWM that considering having been through two World Wars, is still functional and presentable.


April 17, 2013, 07:44 PM
The Luger does NOT require "hot" ammo. This is an urban myth. Hot loads serve only to abuse them. We've done a hell of a lot of research on this. This myth gives rise to shade tree tinkering with recoil springs which really screw things up. As George Luger said, "The springs have to be right."

The problem begins with SAAMI spec 9 mm being shorter than God, Georg Luger, & DWM intended. Add some 90 year old magazines that have been dropped on their head once too often, screwed up recoil springs, and maybe mismatched parts and it's no wonder there are problems. Open up six shooter grade Lugers and you will find seven different recoil springs, none to spec. (I even have one with a recoil spring that's downright dangerous.)

Since our hero above has a Stoeger stainless, chances are pretty good he has matched parts, a proper recoil spring, and a decent magazine. That leaves ammo of the proper length. best way to get the length is to handload. Short of that there has been pretty fair luck with Winchester white box bulk hardball.

Jim K
April 18, 2013, 12:21 AM
The stainless 9mm Stoeger Luger was, IIRC, made by Mitchell Arms. They were cast from stainless steel and had a so-so reputation. Some worked OK while others didn't. The workmanship was not especially good.

They have a bit of collector interest, mainly among Luger collectors who just want one of anything with the name or the look of a Luger pistol, but they are not "real" Lugers and have no historical value.


April 18, 2013, 08:40 AM
Thanks for the encouragement and congrats, guys.

huntershooter- beautiful Lugers! Thanks for the pics.

unspellable- thanks for the tip about the longer length loads.

Jim- I said this was a shooter, not a collector's piece in my original post. I will say that this Stoeger appears well-made and tightly fitted. It displays reasonable accuracy, and with ammo it likes appears to function well.

My only problem now, guys, is this experience is making me think I also need a real Luger preferably in .30 Luger caliber! The holdup in the past for me is my lack of knowledge of the vast breath of variations of Lugers, and fear of the complexity involved with disassembly.

:) WB

April 18, 2013, 08:47 AM
Go here:


And here:


All will be revealed. :D

April 18, 2013, 12:50 PM
Like Stoeger, Mitchell was marketing them, not manufacturing them. They were made by an outfit in Texas, name escapes me at the moment.

The Mitchells are preferable as they take a standard magazine and they didn't put a billboard on the side as Stoeger did.

Yes, their rep[utation for reliability is a bit spotty.

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