War Dogs – The Classic German Luger and Mauser Part 2

War Dogs – The Classic German Luger and Mauser Part 2 Part 1

The WWII Broomhandle Mauser Model 712 and Luger P.08

By Dennis Adler

The Umarex Legends WWII series now includes the Mauser Model 712 Broomhandle. The enhanced finish on both CO2 models gives them an even more realistic appearance, especially the P.08 with its aged dark brown grips. The Model 712 is again so accurate in detail that an original Mauser wooden shoulder stock will mount and lock into the rear pistol grip channel.

You didn’t have to be a German soldier or a member of the French underground to have a Model 712 in the 1940s. The Broomhandle Mauser design transcended wars, ideologies and nations; it was one of the most advanced handguns of its era. The Model 712 Broomhandles had been used by explorers, adventurers, expeditionary forces, and individuals everywhere in the world from 1932 until well after WWII, even though all Broomhandle manufacturing at Mauser had ended in 1937. In addition to other Broomhandle models, Mauser produced nearly 100,000 Model 712 pistols, a great many of which were sold to the Chinese in the 1930s, but the Model 712 and other Broomhandle models in 7.63mm and 9mm were also being used prior to, during and after WWII in countries as far flung as England, France and Italy, Austria, Turkey, Persia and the Middle East, in Finland, Norway, Indonesia, Siam (Thailand), Russia, the United States, and South America. Not as ubiquitous as the semi-auto models, the 712 was in that same rare category as the fixed magazine 20-shot models introduced in the early part of the 20th century and long before the 712 with its detachable box magazine. (Two years earlier Mauser had built a small number of Model 1930 semi-autos with the same removable box magazine that would be used on the selective fire Model 1932). The Umarex Mauser Model 712, particularly the WWII limited edition with weathered finish, looks even more like a real Model 1932 Mauser. read more


War Dogs – The Classic German Luger and Mauser Part 1

War Dogs – The Classic German Luger and Mauser Part 1 Part 2

The WWII Broomhandle Mauser Model 712 and Luger P.08

By Dennis Adler

Recreating legendary firearms in .177 caliber is a specialty of Umarex, and their Umarex Legends models now have the WWII Edition M712 (right) and Luger P.08. While the P.08 remained very much the same, there were many Broomhandle variations.

If you watch WWII movies, you would think that the only handguns German soldiers ever used were Lugers, Walther P.38s and PPKs, and that couldn’t be further from the truth. Germany is home to some of the world’s most legendary armsmakers, and indeed the Georg Luger-designed toggle link action semi-auto was one of Germany’s principal sidearms from 1908 throughout WWII, but the guns at hand were far more extensive than many realize. In addition to the 9mm Walther P.38 semiautomatic pistol, which wasn’t even adopted until after the start of WWII, officers also had the Walther PP, and PPK, the .380 ACP Astra 300, 9mm Largo Astra 400, and .380 ACP Mauser HSc. In addition to Lugers and P.38s, soldiers in the field who were issued sidearms could have carried the 9mm Parabellum Astra 600, 9mm Browning Hi-Power, which were manufactured during the occupation of the FN factory in Belgium. Earlier Browning FN pistols like the 32 ACP Models 1910 and 1922 were also put into service during the war. read more


Five top blowback action semi-autos

Five top blowback action semi-autos…

with the easiest to load magazines!

By Dennis Adler

Five different guns all with one thing in common, a self-contained CO2 BB magazine that is easy to load. Clockwise from bottom left, Umarex P.08 Parabellum, Umarex Beretta M92A1, Sig Sauer P226 X-Five, Tanfoglio Limited Custom and Swiss Arms SA 1911 TRS.

Blowback action semi autos burn through .177 caliber rounds almost as fast as a selective fire model on full auto. That’s a great part of their appeal; a realistic airgun experience that simulates the cartridge-firing model’s operation. A semi-auto is a fast gun to shoot and reload, which is why they are generally preferred over revolvers. But even with a self-contained CO2 BB magazine, like all five of the airguns featured here, the reloading experience can vary from slow to excruciatingly slow. Not with loading the magazine into the gun, that’s 100 percent accurate in every respect, but rather with loading the BBs into the magazine! Pressing anywhere from 8 to 15 rounds of 9mm, .40 S&W or .45ACP into a cartridge magazine is no picnic either, but each round goes on top of the other and gets pushed down into the magazine compressing the follower spring as you go. If CO2 BB magazines worked the same way, loading would be pretty straightforward. But that isn’t the way BBs load into a self-contained CO2 BB magazine. read more


War Dogs Part 5 The P.08 and P.38

War Dogs Part 5

On the firing line – Luger P.08 vs. Walther P.38

By Dennis Adler

The Umarex Walther P.38 (right) and Gletcher (and Umarex) P.08 Parabellum are nearly identical in overall design, dimensions and operation to the original 9mm pistols.

The Umarex Walther P.38 (right) and Gletcher (and Umarex) P.08 Parabellum are nearly identical in overall design, dimensions and operation to the original 9mm pistols.

 Between the Walther P.38 and Luger P.08 we have two preeminent German handgun designs; two very different approaches to a 9mm military sidearm, nearly half a century apart from each other and  built by two of the most famous armsmakers of all time. Packing all that history into a pair of CO2- powered, .177 caliber blowback action handguns is a tall order, but Umarex and Gletcher have managed to do exceptional work on each design. read more


War Dogs Part 4 The P.08 and P.38

War Dogs Part 4

The German Equation – Luger P.08 vs. Walther P.38

By Dennis Adler

Famous for design and innovation, two of the most easily recognized handguns in the world, the Luger P.08 design has been around for more than a century, and the Walther P.38 remains of the greatest handguns of all time, still relevant as a defensive sidearm 79 years after it was introduced. Both guns are also made today in .177 caliber blowback action models.

Famous for design and innovation, two of the most easily recognized handguns in the world, the Luger P.08 design has been around for more than a century, and the Walther P.38 remains one of the greatest handguns of all time, still relevant as a defensive sidearm 79 years after it was introduced. Both guns are also made today in .177 caliber blowback action models.

It is a foregone conclusion which handgun was the greatest American semiautomatic pistol of WWII, not quite so easy on the European front where Germany had two very successful and popular sidearms at their disposal, one, like America’s Colt Model 1911A1 came from an earlier era and had already proven its mettle under fire in WWI. This was the famous Luger Parabellum introduced in 1900; the P.08 version (without the grip safety) was introduced in 1908. read more


Luger P.08 and Makarov pistols

Luger P.08 and Makarov pistols Part 2

Luger vs. Luger – Evaluating the Umarex and Gletcher P.08 Models

By Dennis Adler

Two versions of the same design, the Umarex Parabellum P.08 (top) and Gletcher P.08 (bottom) take different approaches to their blowback action .177 caliber models.

Two versions of the same design, the Umarex Parabellum P.08 (top) and Gletcher P.08 (bottom) take different approaches to their blowback action .177 caliber models.

The Luger is one of the most “available” military handguns in the world and their values can range from around $1,800 to $10,000 and up, depending upon the model, year of manufacture, the manufacturer, and of course, condition. The average price for a 95 percent condition Code 42 or byf Mauser-produced P.08 model is around the $2,000 to $3,000 mark [1], which makes the Umarex Legends .177 caliber Mauser Parabellum P.08 model a heck of a buy since it has all of the essential operating features and factory markings, right down to the number 42 stamped at the back of the toggle. This was the Mauser GmbH manufacturer’s code for military contract guns built from 1934 to 1940. After 1940 the code was changed to byf. read more


Luger P.08 and Makarov pistols

Luger P.08 and Makarov pistols

One legendary WWI and WWII German semi-auto

faces off with Russia’s post WWII top gun

By Dennis Adler 

Two of a kind times two, the Umarex P.08 Legends Luger Parabellum (with the toggle locked open), the Gletcher P.08 version (one of two Luger models offered), the Gletcher Russian Legends Makarov (slide locked back) and Umarex Makarov Ultra. All four are blowback action semi-autos, but none are alike!

Two of a kind times two, the Umarex Legends Parabellum (toggle locked open), the Gletcher P.08 version (one of two models offered), Gletcher Russian Legends Makarov (slide locked back) and Umarex Makarov Ultra. All four are blowback action semi-autos, but none are alike!

Many of you are going, “What, why is he comparing a Luger with a Makarov?” Two reasons; both have their roots tied to military history and both have become iconic firearms. The Luger Parabellum is an evolution of a late 19th century design, the Borchardt, while the Makarov, an early post-WWII pistol, has its basis in the mid 20th century Russian Tokarev semiautomatic pistol, without which the Makarov might never have been designed. Both 1908 Luger and 1951 Makarov were being used in the post WWII era, and both remain to this day among the most significant of all European handguns, albeit the Luger with a much greater heritage than the Makarov. Both have been recreated as high-quality, blowback action .177 caliber semiautomatic air pistols, and by two different manufacturers, Umarex and Gletcher; two guns, two manufacturers, and two different approaches to the same end. Who comes out on top?  You be the judge. read more