COMING IN JUNE 2020
EXCEPTIONAL DWM TEST 1899 LUGER, SWISS, DUTCH Cal. 7.65mm Luger. S# 35.
inv # 20-1407
Exceptionally rare! One of about 40 pre-production Lugers; this example was one of only three pistols (two known serial numbers) trialed by the Dutch military in 1899. In 1899 the Dutch requested some Lugers for an October trial. One was initially supplied. After a brief postponement, DWM forwarded two additional “improved” pistols; #34 and #35 (this pistol). This exact pistol was reviewed at length in the Borchardt & Luger Automatic Pistols series by Geoff Sturgess. This pistol has a 6” barrel, blank chamber and matching toggle assembly, wherein the externally unmarked middle link has the original squared extension. It has a later pattern thin trigger, thin grip safety, and the early, broad checkered thumb safety. The frame under the safety is blued, without a scribe-bordered recess, and retains its original non-relieved configuration that will only accept the early, flat button magazines. Cited by Sturgess as “the only example of this pattern known with a solid front grip strap toe.” Grips patterned after the Borchardt with central checkering and a broad heavily varnished border.
It is not surprising that a few parts on this pistol were updated or period replaced, the sand and rust testing of the Dutch trial reported as being particularly severe. The 6” barrel is a factory replacement (fitted using an unfinished spacer), as is the later pattern trigger. Other unnumbered parts include the frame (the “35” having been added by the importer), firing pin, sideplate, grip safety, trigger, magazine release button and both grips. The dual firing pin spring has been updated with a single coil spring. As per the other trial guns, major components were finished with a well-polished rust blue. Strawed parts include the takedown lever, extractor, ejector trigger, thumb safety and sear. Fire blued front sight and grip screws.