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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am a new member and have a question about a hi-power I own. The front strap has the letters LGKT with the number 0718 below it and the two mags are also stamped with the same thing. The serial number of the pistol is 74xx. what does the front strap stampings mean? Thanks
 

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The letters identify your gun as formerly belonging to the Osterreicher (Austrian) Landes Gendarmerie. That is what the 'LG' stands for. the 'KT' identifies the jurisdiction (district or province). The numbers are the 'rack number' for the particular gun.

Think of it as telling you that your gun has 'history'.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for the info, I guess that would be the Austrian police as oposed to the army. Any idea how old it is? Thanks
 

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I think that the 74 in the front of the serial numbers means it was made in 74. I'm not sure though my 70C and my 73C make me lean in that direction. Does yours have a ''C'' after the numbers?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
There are no letters omly a 4 digit number and it has the internal extractor like a 1911. Thanks
 

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Just to add a little to the foregoing reply. Like many HP's produced to fill a contract, the Austrian police contract had it's own numerical sequence. Hence, your pistol was number seventy four hundred and some in that contract run--assuming they started with # 1. The LGK_ numbers were added by the Austrians to further identify the Province they were assigned to, along with the mags. Regards, G>M>F>
 

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Just to add a little to the foregoing reply. Like many HP's produced to fill a contract, the Austrian police contract had it's own numerical sequence. Hence, your pistol was number seventy four hundred and some in that contract run--assuming they started with # 1. The LGK_ numbers were added by the Austrians to further identify the Province they were assigned to, along with the mags. Regards, G>M>F>
Query

I have seen a few WWII German Hi-Powers that were refinished and had the Austrian police markings. Some of these were in the initial group that was imported by the Old Sacramento Armory.

Also, I have a Hi-Power with the serial number of E.08908 with Austrian police markings of
 

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I always step aside when CPW speaks. ;) With his evidence in hand, it seems that the Austrian police marked pistols weren't just a special contract run, as I thought. Also, if there are 5 digit serial #'s so marked then they probably were interspersed within regular production ?? (I have Ser # 290 & #5264).
The WW II ones & especially the "E" prefix serial # (first I have heard of that!) make me now think that " purchases were from whatever was available" as Charles suggests. Thanks once again for your input, CPW

I remain too soon oldt und too late schmardt ::) Regards, G>M>F>
 

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I thought, from Stevens book, that the "E" series indicated it was a British contract pistol 1951-1953

This was a distinctive 5 digit serial number beginning with E

pg 200
 

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I thought, from Stevens book, that the "E" series indicated it was a British contract pistol 1951-1953

This was a distinctive 5 digit serial number beginning with E

pg 200
For whatever reason, many of the 'E' prefix Hi-Powers ended up on the commercial market. As metioned above I have and also have seen a few of them with the Austrian police markings. I also have one -- Serial Number E.06294 that is marked
 

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I always step aside when CPW speaks. ;) With his evidence in hand, it seems that the Austrian police marked pistols weren't just a special contract run, as I thought. Also, if there are 5 digit serial #'s so marked then they probably were interspersed within regular production ?? (I have Ser # 290 & #5264).
The WW II ones & especially the "E" prefix serial # (first I have heard of that!) make me now think that " purchases were from whatever was available" as Charles suggests. Thanks once again for your input, CPW

I remain too soon oldt und too late schmardt ::) Regards, G>M>F>
I learn as I go along. I have, at times, completely reversed some of my beliefs when more info becomes available.

It could be that there were various purchases of Hi-Powers at various times from regular production for the Austrian police.

It could also be (as you thought) that there was a special serial number range for the Austrian police Hi-Powers, with the few 'E' prefix, the few refinished WWII German ones, and the 5 digit ones being add ins. Most of the ones I have seen have been under 10,000, which would tend to indicate a separate serial number range.

(I have seen the Austrian ones with a two digit serial number.)

The few 'E" prefix and refinished WWII German Hi=Powers could have been stop gaps, pending the arrival of the special contract or fill ins at a later point in time. The higher 5 digit ones could have resulted from "drat, we are 50 pistols short and the contract is complete and if we open it up FN will charge us an arm and leg and take forever. So go order another 50 pistols from regular production and have them here as soon as possible."

I like simple solutions. The more complex the solution the more likely it may not be correct. FN was a private business and they reasoned like a private company wanting to make money (and they did make money). Viewing it in this light, FN's actions make perfect business sense. Also governments act as typical red tape entities, with an occassional dose of common sense.

Either of the two possibilities are very possible.

If we had access to the Austrian purchase records, all of our questions would be answered.
 

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I might also mentioned that there re oddities out there for which there is no explanation.

I have in my possession a Hi-Power (which belongs to another collector) that is only 7 inches long. it is pre-war with a 4 digit serial number - under 2000. Everything has been shotened. The grip is smaller, with a manufactured 10 round or so magazine. The slide is shorter as well as the frame, the slide release s shorter. The legend on the slide has been re-positioned to fit the smaller slide.. It has no stock slot but does have the tangent sight.

When I look at it and compare it to a standard one, I can only think that this was done at the factory, The pistol is in bad shape - the finish is well worn to non-existent. The barrel is far from mint. It is import marked. From what I understand of its history, it came into this country with the other Hi-Powers from China and ended up in one collection. Recently that owner sold it to the current owner (who has been trying to get it for years). The current owner sent it to me so I could take pictures, measurements, etc.

I doubt if it has been faked. Looking at it, the changes either had to been done at the factory. I doubt anyone wold have faked it as (1) they would have had a better finish, (2) the very existence of it raises red flags. so it would not be an easy sell, (3) The known history of it indicates that t is legit.

There are a lot of interesting questons. A few are: Was it one of a kind ? (Would FN redesign the pistol in the first year of production and change the assembly lines for one pistol?) Was it a separate contract ? (Remember a digit serial number would put it in the first year of production.) Were a group of these ordered and made ? When was it made ?
 

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Hello CPW: Please Post Photos of it, if at all possible.

Thanks,
Bob
 

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The "E" prefix completely left my mind-thanks for the reminder & page #. The E prefix with the "silesia" marking must be a rarity-produced for one buyer, sold (shipped) to another? I've acquired two "Silesia's", one a GI bring-back, & always thought not too scarce but interesting versions. ??? The 'compact' CPW describes sounds like a real mystery--maybe FN gave up on a prototype too soon??
By the way, I was around back then, but just not in the right place to record all these things!! Regards, G>M>F>
 

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Hello CPW: Please Post Photos of it, if at all possible.

Thanks,
Bob
If you are talking about the smaller version, I will have to get the permission of the owner.

I have ordered a caliper so that my measurements would be more exact. I still have to take comparison photos which will really show the difference in size.

I am able to post pictures on the luger forum, jan Still's site, Gunboards, and the 1911 forum (although links are used on the 1911 forum). The only time I posted pictures here was when NCBubba did it once for me.

I gather that here the picture has to already been uploaded somewhere instead of being uploaded directly. It never seems to work for me. (When I was a kid, we did not have TV or a private phone, etc. Only the rich people had those.)
 

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The "E" prefix completely left my mind-thanks for the reminder & page #. The E prefix with the "silesia" marking must be a rarity-produced for one buyer, sold (shipped) to another? I've acquired two "Silesia's", one a GI bring-back, & always thought not too scarce but interesting versions. ??? The 'compact' CPW describes sounds like a real mystery--maybe FN gave up on a prototype too soon??
By the way, I was around back then, but just not in the right place to record all these things!! Regards, G>M>F>
There are not too many Sileslia marked Hi-Powers out there. While not rare, they are far from common. Most of the ones in this country I think were sold to servicemen who brought tem back to this country.

There are also Hi-Powers marked "AKAH" and "GECO". These are even less common. Only one "NORIS" Hi-Power is known.

I wrote an article for the NAPCA magazine a few years ago, which pertained to the marked Hi-Powers. It follows (I am not sure if the Tables will com over properly)


West German Commercially Marked Browning High-Powers
 

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Hello cwp,

This is one of the most informative and interesting posts that has been posted here and dearly deserves a "sticky" if Moderator Bob concurs.

Thank you for sharing the information with us!

Best,

Chris
 

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++++1 on the sticky-make it happen. CPW gives me unwarrented credit for helping post a picture of anything. We got digital cameras here (including a whiz bang very expensive Xmas present she bought for herself) but so far are dumber than dirt about getting anything on the internet. I'm still working on the VCR instruction manual :) Only thing I can do on my new cell phone is hit 911--my kids think I'm mad at them :(
But I do thank you for the undeserved compliment, CPW--I'm inspired to try to learn how even if the brain cells have gone south. Regards, G>M>F>
 
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