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CZ38 – The Czech Ugly Ducking

The CZ vz.38 pistol was developed by the CZ factory as a replacement for Czechoslovakia’s vz.24 pistols. It was formally accepted by the Czech Army in June of 1938, and 41,000 were ordered from the factory. Tooling and production setup took close to a year, and the German military occupied the country just 4 days after testing of the first pre-production batch of pistols. However, the German authorities decided that CZ should complete to pistol production anyway, and took possession of the guns themselves for use by the Wehrmacht, Reich Labor Service, Luftwaffe, and other services at the Pistole 39(t).
The initial order of 41,000 was completed by the end of 1939 with serial numbers from 250,000 through 291,000 and accepted by the Czech military on behalf of the Germans – so these pistols will not have waffenamt marks. Two additional batches were made – 3000 guns for the Luftwaffe (numbered 240,000-242,000) and 1000 for export, probably to Bulgarian (with B-prefix serial numbers 291,000-292,000).
Mechanically, the vz.38 is a simple blowback automatic pistol chambered for the .380 cartridge, aka 9mm Browning or 9x17mm. It is a rather awkward looking gun, and a double action only trigger. It does have a quite unique and very simple disassembly procedure though!

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