P38 Wartime Manufacturers

The P38, developed by Carl Walther in 1938, had its early German army versions marked with the Walther banner. In 1940, fearing Allied attacks, the banner was replaced with a secret code "480." This quickly changed to "ac." During the Nazi era, Walther produced 584,500 P38 pistols, marked with an inspection stamp (Waffenamt) featuring an eagle over "359."


Due to high demand, two more P38 manufacturers emerged in 1942: Mauser and Spreewerk. Mauser produced 323,000 pistols, initially marked "byf" and later changed to "svw" in early 1945. The factory was taken over by the French in April 1945, who continued production until 1946 for their use, marking the pistols with "svw." Mauser's inspection stamp featured an eagle over "135" initially, changing to "E/WaA135" by late 1943..


Spreewerk, the third manufacturer, began making P.38 pistols in late 1942 using the code "CYQ." They produced 283,080 pistols before Russian conquest in April 1945. About 100 Russian-supervised pistols (00-series) were made before production halted and the factory was disassembled. Spreewerk's inspection stamp featured an eagle above "88" (E/88).