Need Opinions: Colt 1911 or Luger?


April 17, 2013, 09:25 PM
I got a box of guns today. Old guns that sat in a closet for years. They came from a deceased relative. I was promised two guns of my choice, the rest to be sold off at auction for settling the estate. I already kept a nice shotgun, which could go to auction, so now I am down to choosing between two classics.

1. Colt Model 1911 US Army, serial number 59xxx, manufactured by Colt in Hartford, Ct. No rust, bluing well worn, mostly holster wear along the top of the slide. Fully functional. A few nicks in the wood grips.

2. Luger, made by Mauwerwerk. Looks like a an enlisted model, no markings of the German army. 75% bluing, no rust. Has a letter stamped into the wood grip. Like everything from Mauser, the action is silky smooth. However, serial on frame does NOT match the serial on the barrel

Which, in your opinion, should I keep? The guns came from an in-law, not a blood relative, so I have no "rights" in this issue. One of them has to go unless I can work out a settlement with the estate. Ideas gentlemen? Thank you.

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April 17, 2013, 09:39 PM
Mauwerwerk...sounds like a chinese knock off. ;)

I'd take the Luger every time

April 17, 2013, 09:42 PM
As for the 1911, that's outside my bailiwick do I can offer no opinion.

Need much more info on the Luger. If it's vintage and not military issue it would be a mauser commercial and there is potential for it to be worth a tidy sum. A decent military issue isn't all that cheap these days.

Go to the Pistole Parabellum forum with a complete discrition and photos, that's where the Luger gurus reside. Thay can give some very good advice.

April 17, 2013, 10:09 PM
I would
To have a
Cool old Colt like that......probably more so than the luger
Piece of american history or piece of german history?
Definately american

Mat, not doormat
April 17, 2013, 10:36 PM
The Luger is likely worth more money. OTOH, I've had a bunch of 1911s and one Luger. I still have 1911s, but sold the Luger. Not my cup of tea.

To be cynical about it, were it me, I'd find out which was worth more, and if it were the Luger, sell it and get a nicer 1911. :evil:

Jim K
April 17, 2013, 11:15 PM
If it is a matter of value, either could be high priced, but an evaluation will require good, clear pictures, both sides, and markings. On the Luger, can you get photos of the non-matching numbers?


April 18, 2013, 12:27 AM

With that serial number the Colt was probably made in 1913, just prior to the start of WWI. If it were up to me and I could have only one, I would go with the Colt M1911.

April 18, 2013, 02:04 AM
Mismatched Luger vs. Colt? I'd take the Colt if the finish is original. The Luger mis-match is worth a grand, the Colt maybe 2x that or more.

April 18, 2013, 04:32 AM
They're free and you're wondering which ones to keep? Keep them all ... at least for now. Get them all assessed as to condition, worth, function and such. They don't have to be fed much and are used to sitting in the dark.

You hear stories of some high value item sitting in an old barn or something for decades and then sold for next to nothing.

April 18, 2013, 06:58 AM
Hello friends and neighbors // I agree with keeping the, early serial number, Colt. Much harder to replace IMHO.

April 18, 2013, 07:00 AM
Hello friends and neighbors // Hotajax,,,Just curious,,, what type of shotgun caught your eye before the Colt or Luger?

April 18, 2013, 07:06 AM
Keep both and return the shotgun. Indeed - what is this shotgun?

I vote 1911.

April 18, 2013, 07:56 AM
Keep both and return the shotgun. Indeed - what is this shotgun?

I vote 1911.
I would agree. Unless the shot gun holds some sentimental value for you, or is a really nice high end gun (Beretta, Browning, Kriegoff, etc) I would keep both pistols and let the shotgun go.

April 18, 2013, 07:59 AM


April 18, 2013, 08:04 AM
Americana at its best-----Keep the Colt

April 18, 2013, 08:34 AM
Yeah, lose the shotgun and keep the Luger and 1911. I can't recommend either without some pics.

April 18, 2013, 08:30 PM
a Winchester Model 42. It's the scaled-down version of Model 12, except in 410. There are many reasons to hang on to the M42. They bring in a minimum of $1500 for the basic field model, it's in NRA Excellent condition, and most importantly, I like 410's. If it comes down to the M42 or the Luger, the Luger goes. BTW, at this point, not sure if it is a "mismatch". On another forum, I saw where some other guys were claiming their barrel number didn't match the receiver number. I just don't know, but maybe they were assembled at the factory that way? It certainly requires further research. At the worst, I'll learn something about Lugers, right? Thanks for all the comments. I like the classic piece of Americana, the Colt.

April 19, 2013, 01:05 AM
I too vote the Colt (by far)

Pics please :D

April 19, 2013, 01:19 AM
I'd go with the Colt!

April 19, 2013, 02:32 AM
Whatever you decide, go to the auction. You may get a good deal on whatever you left out!

April 19, 2013, 10:14 AM
The Colt sounds like the better of the two pistols. However, without photos and more information, it's hard to know how correct/original either might be.

Mismatched parts on a Luger pretty well kill any real collector interest. I think you can buy a shooter Luger for well under $1K at many gun shows.

April 19, 2013, 10:28 AM
Go American - Go Colt ;)

Old Shooter
April 19, 2013, 10:47 AM
keep the Colt and the shotgun, go to the auction and bid on the Luger.

Or, just tell the family that the auction set-up is much more complicated and time consuming than you had expected and would like to get your choice of three guns for your services.

Jim Watson
April 19, 2013, 11:02 AM
Show pictures, otherwise it is just a guessing game.

Also, what is your application for any of these guns?
If the 1911 is sound and original, it has collector interest and high dollar value. But the collectors warn against shooting the old mild steel guns because a cracked slide will turn a prize into a paperweight.

Even a mismatched Luger is worth a good bit these days as all the really nice matched guns have been priced out of sight. Shooting a Luger is kind of a novelty trick.

A Model 42 is a neat little squirrel gun or .410 skeet if you are really quick on the pump. Good dollar value.

April 19, 2013, 12:12 PM
Hello friends and neighbors// The Win. model 42 would be a nice snag/save, especially in that condition...congrats.

April 19, 2013, 10:18 PM
If it was functional, I'd keep the Luger. Maybe even if it wasn't.

That toggle action is unique and the aesthetics of the Luger are just really cool.

1911s are common today though granted not original military guns, but practically everyone makes some sort of 1911 clone. However, you can't get anything remotely like a Luger today.

April 20, 2013, 09:07 PM
Yeah, I understand what you're saying, but the 1911 is Americana at it's best. It's made by Colt, not a contractor. It's as American as a '62 Vette, a P-51 Mustang, and Marilyn Monroe. Besides, didn't the Yanks, armed with M1911's, prevail over the the guys who made Lugers in two world wars? Gotta keep the Colt now that I've had some time to think about it. It's just right.

April 21, 2013, 10:03 PM
A miss-matched Luger in the condition you describe is a shooter, worth about $800-900. If the 1911 is a decent military issue pistol, that is 111% the one to keep.

April 22, 2013, 01:51 AM
Choose one and make an offer on the other

April 23, 2013, 07:37 AM
A pre-WWI Colt is going to be worth a lot more than a mismatched Luger. Lugers look cool, but the Colt will likely shoot better. I have had several examples of both, in my experience the Lugers were very ammo sensitive while the 1911's are way less picky.

Keep the Colt.

April 24, 2013, 09:00 AM
I'd take the Colt. Mismatched numbers do not appeal to me. Plus, I like 45 acp so.

April 25, 2013, 12:56 PM
Oh, my... the Winchester Model 42 is a great find. Treasure it, especially if it's in as good condition as you say. Don't dump the 42 for that Luger.

Colt all the way.

April 25, 2013, 01:10 PM
Excellent choice Jax! Make sure to let us know what the luger ends up going for.

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