Archived-NOT FOR SALE
1906 Bulgarian

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This is a 1906 DWM contract gun made for the Bulgarian Government and marked with the Royal Crest of Bulgaria with a 9mm, 100mm barrel.  These guns were originally issued in 7.65mm to match the 1900 models that the Bulgarian government had bought. However, when the popularity of the 9mm become prevalent these guns were sent back to DWM for conversion. (1093) 

 

NOTE: Photographs taken today with the high mega-pixel camera show more than we sometimes can see with the human eye. Magnified close-ups show us tool marks and natural surface conditions that one normally doesn't see in the ordinary handling of the weapon.  Photographs are copyrighted, all rights reserved, any extraction, reproduction or display of gun pictures without the express consent of the Phoenix Investment Arms is strictly prohibited. Thank you for your cooperation.

 

This is a beautiful gun with the numbered grip safety and the long sear with the numbered grip safety and nitrate blued screws and pins. The uniqueness of the Bulgarian was the extractor and the safety were marked with the Cyrillic letter. The frame is the new short type without a stock lug and serial numbers on the front of the frame.
This is a extremely rare gun that rarely shows up in as good as condition as this one. Over the Chamber is the Bulgarian Crest and the Safety has the Cyrillic Lettering.  The Barrel is 9mm 4" and as common these were re-barreled from the original 7.65mm in 1908 when that contract was received by the Bulgarians.

 

The grips are the fine diamond walnut and the straw markings of the locking lever, trigger, magazine release and ejector are nearly 98%. The serial numbers on the frame, locking bolt, side plate and rear toggle all match. A hold open device is present which is not common to the 1906 model.  See Michael Reese, Page 40  He notes "most of the small parts are mismatched due to factory refinishing".  This is one of the factory re-barrels that came through intact.  Just a beautiful example of the '06 Bulgarian after modification to 9mm.

The frame is marked with the serial number and the parts are further marked in the commercial manner (hidden) with the numbers at the bottom of the side plate and locking lever.   The 9mm barrels have never been observed to have been numbered that were changed out on the Bulgarian from the 7.65mm after the lot of 1908's were adopted with the 9mm.

The barrel is 4". It has a "V" notch sight on the rear linkage.   The first toggle link is marked with the DWM monogram.

 

With a territory of 110,994 square kilometers, Bulgaria ranks as the third-largest country in Southeast Europe (after Romania and Greece). Several mountainous areas define the landscape, most notably the Stara Planina (Balkan) and Rodopi mountain ranges, as well as the Rila range, which includes the highest peak in the Balkan region, Musala. In contrast, the Danubian plain in the north and the Upper Thracian Plain in the south represent Bulgaria's lowest and most fertile regions. The 378-kilometer Black Sea coastline covers the entire eastern bound of the country. The Russo-Turkish War of 18771878 led to the re-establishment of a Bulgarian state as a constitutional monarchy in 1878, with the Treaty of San Stefano marking the birth of the Third Bulgarian State. In 1908, with social strife brewing at the core of the Ottoman Empire, the Alexander Malinov government and Prince Ferdinand of Bulgaria formally proclaimed the full sovereignty of the Bulgarian state at the ancient capital of Veliko Tarnovo.
The Cyrillic alphabet was based on the Greek uncial script, augmented by ligatures and consonants from the older Glagolitic alphabet for sounds not found in Greek. Tradition holds that Cyrillic and Glagolitic were formalized either by the two Greek brothers born in Thessaloniki, Saints Cyril and Methodius who brought Christianity to the southern Slavs, or by their disciples.

Peter the Great, Tsar of Russia, mandated the use of westernized letter forms in the early eighteenth century. Over time, these were largely adopted in the other languages that use the alphabet. The Cyrillic language thus began regional variations which account in some degree for the difference between the Russian and Bulgarian Cyrillic appearing on the same Luger.

 

The Luger is very clean both inside and out.  Serial number placement is in the commercial ("hidden") style. The safety is both grip safety and the thumb safety where the Cryllic letters ОГЪНЪ appears. Safe is Up. The frame has a  no stock lug, a grip safety and the toggle is marked with DWM, the manufacturer.

The extractor is marked "ЛЪДЕВНЪ" the Bulgarian word for loaded The Bulgarians referred to the 1908 model as Model 1911 as was given the P.08 Imperial German Army Luger adapted by the Bulgarian military in 1911. The Bulgarian contract was awarded in 1911 for 10,000 P.08 style Bulgarian Lugers, with slight modifications requested by the Bulgarian military.

1929 Bulgarian Luger Manual

The Bulgarian Crest

1878-1944

Right: Found was an original copy of the 1929 Bulgarian Luger manual which had illustrations of both the old (7.65mm) and the new 9mm Luger with the 4" (100mm) barrel an suggests the manual was used for the 1900, 1906 and as the American collectors refer to it the 1908 model.

Close-up of the Bulgarian Coat of Arms.  Starting with the Swiss followed by the American Eagle DWM had a winner by placing the national crest over the chamber.  The Bulgarian contracts began with the 1900, then they bought the 1906 model and finally the 1908. Usually these guns are well worn and battle field tested but this one, perhaps when it went back for the 9mm barrel, the gun was refinished.

It is entirely subjective to give any Luger a rating of excellent or fine, just as it is to declare it xx% blued or strawed. Few Lugers are out of the box new and these are premium priced. Bluing percentages is like Beauty, in the eye of the beholder.  We strive to provide pictures so you can judge for yourself if the gun meets your criteria. If there is some view that is missing that will affect your buying decision just let us know.

 

This is a beautiful example of the 1906 Bulgarian Model 1911 as they called it with the gun being re-barreled and factory refinished. How it never made it back to the battle field we will never know but some collector will find it a good home.  This Luger is offered for $5,895.00 over the counter.  this gun is subject to immediate withdrawal without notice when sold over the counter.

 

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