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1938 Swedish Army Trials Luger

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Sweden tested the Luger in 1904, along with all the major semiauto pistols available at the time. The Luger was found to be the most accurate gun in the trials, but expensive and not as reliable in cold weather as the Browning 1903 – which was formally adopted as the m/1907 a few years later and produced under license at Husqvarna. Fast-forward to the 1930s, and Sweden has begun to purchase batches of submachine guns in 9x19mm. Their Browning pistols are in 9×20 Browning, and it would make a lot of sense to standardize on just one 9mm pistol cartridge. In 1938/9, Sweden held a second set of trials with the Luger (the New Model this time) the Walther HP (P38) and the Finnish Lahti M35.

The Lugers in question were 300 guns purchased form Mauser. They were all 1938 dated, with 275 in 9mm Luger with 4 3/4 inch barrels and 25 guns with 4 inch barrel chambered for .30 Luger. They did not receive and specifically Swedish markings, and can be identified only by serial number – 5700v to 6000v. Interestingly, the 9mm ones have salt-blued barrels but the other parts rust-blued (except for the small parts that were normally strawed).

The late 1930s testing once again found the Luger to be the most accurate pistol, but it was still expensive. A purchase of 1500 Walther HP pistols was made, but the outbreak of war interrupted the supply from Germany. Instead, the Lahti was adopted at the m/40 pistol, and produced in large numbers at Husqvarna as the Browning had been before it.

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