Skip to main content

This Walther P.38 Is Missing Its Slide Marking: Was It Reblued?

This Walther P.38 shows signs of rounding, in addition to missing its slide marking, indicating it was sanded prior to being reblued.

This Walther P.38 Is Missing Its Slide Marking: Was It Reblued?

Generic photo of a Walther P.38. (HM Thompson photo / Shutterstock)

Question: 

I recently bought a P.38 pistol from a friend of mine who owns a gun shop. It is different from other P.38s that I’ve had in the past. My friend thinks it was reblued, but I don’t think that’s it. The code and other stampings on it are not very deep and hard to read. You can see that it has the code “ac”. And the year is hard to make out, but looks to be “43” or “45”. The finish looks original to me, but with a lot of holster wear. What is unusual about it is that the slide does not have “P.38” stamped on the left side. Every other P.38 I’ve seen had “P.38” stamped on the slide. My friend’s theory is that when it was reblued, they sanded it off. I’m not so sure as there are no signs of stampings on there or evidence of it being sanded off. Did they make P.38s without the model stamp, or is this a case of it being removed? Otherwise, it looks original with typical markings. The serial number is 14XXe. The finish on the side is a brownish color with a lot of wear. Anything you can tell us about this pistol would be appreciated.

 -P.McC. of Leechburg, Pennsylvania

Answer: 

I’m inclined to agree with your friend. The remaining markings look quite thin, and I believe I can see some rounding in a few areas that would indicate metal has been removed by filing or buffing. The “ac” code shows the gun was manufactured by Walther. The “43” or “45” would be the year of manufacture. The ac 43, 44 and 45 are fairly common P.38 variants. To my knowledge, no P.38s in this series were manufactured sans normal markings.

-Garry James

Current Magazine Cover

Enjoy articles like this?

Subscribe to the magazine.

Get access to everything Guns & Ammo has to offer.
Subscribe to the Magazine

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

Recent Videos

Its seems like every year is a busy year FN, and 2024 is no different. Joe Kurtenbach is joined by Chris Johnson and Ric...
Optics

HIVIZ FastDot H3 Handgun Sights

Its seems like every year is a busy year FN, and 2024 is no different. Joe Kurtenbach is joined by Chris Johnson and Ric...
Optics

Meprolight's M22 Dual-Illumination No Batteries Reflex Sight: Video Review

Its seems like every year is a busy year FN, and 2024 is no different. Joe Kurtenbach is joined by Chris Johnson and Ric...
Videos - Guns - Other

Ballistic Advantage Continues Excellence in Barrel Design

Its seems like every year is a busy year FN, and 2024 is no different. Joe Kurtenbach is joined by Chris Johnson and Ric...
Rifles

Winchester Ranger Returns! Now In .22

Its seems like every year is a busy year FN, and 2024 is no different. Joe Kurtenbach is joined by Chris Johnson and Ric...
Rifles

Latest Name In Lever Guns: Aero Precision

Its seems like every year is a busy year FN, and 2024 is no different. Joe Kurtenbach is joined by Chris Johnson and Ric...
Rifles

SAKO 90 Quest Lightweight Hunting Rifle

Its seems like every year is a busy year FN, and 2024 is no different. Joe Kurtenbach is joined by Chris Johnson and Ric...
Optics

Warne Scope Mounts New Red Dot Risers

Its seems like every year is a busy year FN, and 2024 is no different. Joe Kurtenbach is joined by Chris Johnson and Ric...
Accessories

New Warne Scope Mounts Skyline Lite Bipods

Its seems like every year is a busy year FN, and 2024 is no different. Joe Kurtenbach is joined by Chris Johnson and Ric...
Handguns

Smith & Wesson Response PCC: Now Taking SIG Mags

Its seems like every year is a busy year FN, and 2024 is no different. Joe Kurtenbach is joined by Chris Johnson and Ric...
Optics

Mark 4HD Riflescopes: The Latest Tactical Line From Leupold

Its seems like every year is a busy year FN, and 2024 is no different. Joe Kurtenbach is joined by Chris Johnson and Ric...
Rifles

Show Stopper: Smith & Wesson 1854 Lever-Action Rifle

Its seems like every year is a busy year FN, and 2024 is no different. Joe Kurtenbach is joined by Chris Johnson and Ric...
Suppressors

FN 509 Pistol Updates and New Suppressors!

Guns and Ammo Magazine Covers Print and Tablet Versions

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

Buy Digital Single Issues

Magazine App Logo

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Guns & Ammo App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Guns & Ammo stories delivered right to your inbox every week.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Guns and Ammo subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Enjoying What You're Reading?

Get a Full Year
of Guns & Ammo
& Digital Access.

Offer only for new subscribers.

Subscribe Now