TFBTV: Why Lugers Rock!

The P08 Luger is one of the most iconic pistols ever designed, and one of the first overwhelmingly successful semi-automatic handguns to grace the Earth. It is a timeless design that embodies European craftsmanship and unmatched aesthetics. All of its parts come together to create an incredible and iconic firearm that has been prized by owners for over 100 years.

In fact, this example is 5 years short of its 100th birthday and functions just as well as it did in 1920! The only downside of this specific example is that is fires the often hard to find 7.65×21 Parabellum cartridge, but surely the bottle-necked design of the round contributes to reliable feeding.



Alex C.

Alex is a Senior Writer for The Firearm Blog and Director of TFBTV.


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  • Cheese_McQueen

    Nothing more gratifying than splitting a card with a 95 year old gun! I really was blown away at how pleasant this gun was to shoot.

  • DrewN

    7.65 Lugers are the best Lugers (not counting the .45 unicorns, but I’ll bet the 7.65’s still shoot better)!

    • the ammo addict

      I agree. I own and shoot two Lugers, one is a DWM Commercial in .30 Luger and the other is a Russian rework in 9mm. They handle nicely, both are tack drivers, and both are completely reliable with roundnose FMJ ammo (the Russian who reworked my 9mm must have actually known what he was doing!). It is true that you can’t buy .30 Luger ammo at Wal-Mart, but online prices are often under $25 per box and I picked up a bunch of Fiocchi roundnose soft point shortly after the panic started for less than $19 per box. And that Fiocchi RNSP bullet actually does work well on soft tissue. The varmints I’ve shot and examined post-mortem didn’t complain a bit! 😉

      • the ammo addict

        Popping varmints in my back yard in the hills of southern Indiana with a nearly century old German handgun using Italian ammo. What a world, lol!

        • Tassiebush

          Sounds awesome! One of these sure would be fantastic for nailing the wallabies down here too! Sigh!

  • Vitsaus

    No full auto conversion this time?

  • Alex, you’re doing a fantastic job with these videos. Keep it up!

    • Thanks Nathaniel!

    • Tassiebush

      I second that!

      • Y-man

        What comes after “I second that” ?
        GREAT JOB ALEX!

        [Yes! I will shout that praise for Alex from the mountain top!]

  • Don Ward

    Lugers are a glorious anachronism and are the height of Teutonic coolness. The one that I’ve handled the most belongs to my grandfather (my step-dad’s dad but it’s the same thing really) who brought it back with him from Over There.
    And holding the Luger I was struck by all that the handgun represented. And if you think I’m going to wax eloquent about the martial virtues of the Wehrmacht and the military tradition of the Prussian military class, you’re wrong.
    What the handgun represented was the detritus of the Thousand Year Reich, brought down and laid low by average guys like my grandfather who was just a 19-year old punk, assigned to the Engineers after washing out of flight school for flying a training plane to a roadhouse in order to pick up girls, who along with millions of others of young men like him, destroyed the most evil regime of the Twentieth Century. And symbols of power and authority like the Luger, the once prestigious handgun of Nazi officers were reduced to little more than playing cards by American GIs who’d trade them for packs of Lucky Strikes cigarettes or booze.

  • Bob

    I was thinking of buying one for $800, which I knew was a good deal, but decided not to, as I had heard of reliability issues and noted that the safety is not in a good place for one’s thumb. A hard to manipulate safety turns a handgun into a range toy or maybe varmint shooter, and $800 for a range toy is a bit much for my salary.
    If this is an incorrect belief, please enlighten me, as the same gun shop has come by another Luger and I believe they are still going with the $800 price.

    • Would you actually consider using one for anything but a range toy? I would advise against this.
      Using a 100-year-old pistol for anything but recreation is inadvisable.

      • Alucard

        Might want to rephrase that statement as the same could be said of a 1911 but plenty of 1911’s work fine as carry guns.Heck at one point I was carrying a hard chromed Webley MK4 with some .455 handloads and I’ve also carried a Walther P1 before.I wouldn’t hesitate to carry a Luger P08 but I would probably be limited to EFMJ for SD ammo,and I would need to chrome it for corrosion resistance.I choose to carry guns I like and am the most accurate and quick on target with,regardless if those guns are 2 years old or if they are 20-100 years old.

      • Bob

        Well, if it is good for the purpose, why not? I mean, I own a Lee-Enfield. It may “only” be a No 4 Mk 1, but I still wouldn’t hesitate to use it for hunting or in an SHTF event.
        In other words, though I may never use it for anything but a range toy, it is still quite effective at other things. A pistol on the other hand is not the best hunting gun and is generally geared toward use on two-legged game. Furthermore, one with a lousy safety is not even good for a SHTF event unless you have no other options.
        To clarify, I would have no intentions of using a $800 piece of history for CCW. However, I would still like it to be useful for more than just the range if I ever need it to be. It gives me one more reason to justify the purchase. Otherwise, I’ll end up doing exactly what I did: Bought a Makarov PM instead, for a quarter the price and even cheaper ammo, which also could be effectively employed as a backup CCW because the safety is in a reasonable position. (Though I admit, the heel mag release takes some getting used to. I hadn’t even fired it before I decided to go the key ring route.)
        So… Yeah, it’s just something to tip me over the edge and commit to buying, not something to make me ride the thing hard and put it away wet.

  • iksnilol

    Question for the collectors: Is 1700 USD for a Wehrmacht marked Luger too much? It has no import marks and looks to be in good condition.

    I know I can’t buy it (not old enough+ finances). But I would like to see if the Bosnian market is worthwhile to check through (found also a long range hunting gun in 6.5×47 lapua for the same price).

    • Yes, that is a good deal!
      Depending on condition of course.

    • DaveP.

      Depends on if the serial numbers match and if the Wehrmacht marks are counterfeit. Best to have an expert check it over, if you can. Remember, anything of value will eventually be faked.

  • Duray

    This week I fulfilled a long term dream and picked up a 106 yr old Colt 1903 Pocket Hammerless. It was manufactured the year after the Model T began production, and a full 2 decades before Wyatt Earp died. I deliberately got a beat up one so I can tinker on it and use it without ruining a collector piece.

  • Nathan

    I am waiting for the more technical video explaining the inner workings of semi-auto pistols titled: “Why Rugers Lock!”

    • Lol!

    • Don Ward

      “Why Stoegers… *fiddles with slide*… Fock!”

  • 36363

    I want new guns with toggle-locked action, such a fascinating design.

  • Alucard

    This might be a little crazy, but if they made a modern polymer framed double stack Luger p08 I would definitely buy it.I’ve always loved the Luger P08 design and wished there was a modern version.