Walther P38 Handgun
|Barrel Length||125 mm|
|Muzzle Velocity||365 m/s|
Contributor: C. Peter ChenThe Walther P38 semi-automatic pistols were accepted by the German Army in 1938, thus the designation of P38, but prototype testing did not start until late 1939. Production began at the Zella-Mehlis, Thuringia, Germany plant in 1939, and deployment of the Walther P38 pistols as the new standard German Army service pistols began in mid 1940. Production of these pistols ended at the Walther plant in late 1942, and the Mauser plant in Oberndorf, Baden-Württemberg, Germany and the Spreewerk plant in Nisou, Bohemia, Czechoslovakia picked up the production, and both continued to manufacture these weapons until 1945. More than 1,200,000 Walther P38 pistols were made between 1940 and 1945.
After the war, the French captured machines and parts of the Walther P38 pistols; kept as war reparations, the French firm Manurhin manufactured these pistols between Jun 1945 and 1946. In 1958, the Walther P38 design was modernized with an aluminum frame and redesignated the Walther P1, which entered production for police and military use. The last civilian Walther P38 pistol commercially available for purchase was made in 2000.
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Captain Henry P. Jim Crowe, Guadalcanal, 13 Jan 1943