1930 Transitional C96 Commercial Broomhandle

Genuine German Luger - Largest Variety of Lugers Offered
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This is an early Transitional 1930's serial #735127, 7.63mm Mauser, 5 1/2" barrel with a fine, bright bore, and the solid rails of the late model. The hammer, bolt, and rear sight slider have all been polished bright. The unnumbered 12 groove wooden grips are in fine condition. The stock is correct and the C96 comes with the complete leather. (1556)


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.


Contrary to common belief, the C96 was not invented by Paul Mauser, but by the Feederle brothers (Fidel, Friedrich, and Josef). Fidel Feederle was the Superintendent of the Experimental Work Shop, and it is reported that the C96 (then referred to as P-7.63 or the Feederle Pistol) was designed and prototyped without the knowledge and against the wishes of Paul Mauser in 1895. Production began in 1896, and ended about 1939 with over one million C96 pistols produced.  


This is a 7.63mm weapon with all the matching parts marked for civilian sale. The barrel is 140mm and it has an adjustable leaf sight marked up to 1000 meters as opposed to military sights for 500 meters. The frame has the stock slot and the thumb safety.  The stock is unnumbered and correct to the weapon. The inside of the gun is clean and well cared for.

Technically, the C-96 is a recoil operated, locked breech, semi-automatic pistol. It uses short recoiling barrel with bolt, located inside the large barrel extension. The bolt and barrel are locked by the vertically tilting locking piece with two lugs, that locked into the recesses on the bottom of the bolt. The gun is hammer fired.

This Broomhandle comes with the complete leather accessories, the harness, cleaning rod, belt loop and the elusive shoulder strap. In 1930 some of the physical appearances were altered and a transitional model was created. The grips went to 12 grooves and a step was milled in the front of the chamber.

In the 1930 Model the "New Safety" was incorporated as a Universal Safety and a recess in the side of the hammer was cut so that when in the “safe” position the hammer can be released but it is stopped before it can touch the firing pin. This means the weapon can be rendered “safe” whether the hammer is cocked or uncocked position.  The hammer can be released by pulling the trigger  without the risk  of discharging the cartridge in the chamber. 

Overall length 12 inches;  Weight 43 ounces;   Operation Short recoil;   Lock Bolt lock from below has teeth which engage in recesses in bolt. Bolt travels in extension which is part of barrel forging and lock is cammed down out of engagement as barrel travels halts; Mainspring Coil operating through plunger; Disconnector Positive type prevents firing more than one shot per trigger pull; Trigger Pivot type, engaging with sear; Safety Thumb piece on left hand side of receiver

The serial number number appears under the Crown U proof with the last four digits on the charging handle. The simplified M1930 Model had a 5.2-inch [132mm] (1930) or 5.5-inch [140mm] long barrel, a solid one-piece grip frame and large wooden grips, and a lack of decorative milling on the frame and hammer. Collectors call this model the "M30". The .30 Mauser (7.63x25mm) was, and remains, a very high velocity pistol cartridge. It launched an 86 grain FMJ bullet at the then sensational velocity of 1410 fps and 375 ft. lbs. of energy.


The development of the C-96 began in 1893 or 1894. Most work had been done by the Federle brothers, who worked for the Mauser company. Final design appeared early in 1895 and had been patented by Paul Mauser. Production began in 1896. The C-96 had been offered for the German Military but failed. However, C-96 has a long and successful story on the civilian market - being offered as a pistol-carbine, it outperformed in effective range most of contemporary pistols and revolvers, being especially popular with travelers and hunters in the areas where big animals are rare or absent at all. C-96 first saw military action during the Boer War in South Africa (1899-1902).


The C96 was the first efficient and reliable design for a self-loading pistol. An outstanding feature of the design was the absence of pins or screws in its construction. The design is based upon the frame being milled out from a solid forging, rather than a separate pieces.  This means that unfortunately a lot of present day C96's have 'shot-out' barrels, and as they cannot be changed out, they have to be bored out to the larger 9mm calibre.  Loading of the C96 is by single round, or through the use of 10-round stripper clips. The C96 was designed to use 7.63mm ammunition, however, due to military requirements, a number were converted to shoot 9mm ammunition, the same as the later available Luger pistol. These are known as the 'Red 9' C96 models.


During the First World War C-96 had been acquired by the German Army due to the shortage of the standard issue Luger P-08 pistols. It also had been used during the World War Two, by some second line troops of the Reichswehr (German Army). C-96 also had been widely exported - in the 1920s Soviet Russia purchased large quantities of the short-barreled (99 mm barrels) C-96s in 7.63mm, giving the name "Bolo-Mauser" (from Bolsheviks' Mauser) to all short-barreled C-96s. In 1930s China also purchased lots of the C-96s in 7.63mm, and also manufactured copies of the C-96 but chambered for .45ACP cartridge. Surprisingly, these copies were of quite good quality. Many C-96 clones were manufactured in Spain, mostly without any license, and mostly by Astra. In the early 1930s Mauser engineers developed a select-fire version of the C-96, which had been used in limited numbers during WW2.


The Broomhandle was unique in that the gun was carried inside the stock.  The gun is loaded with a stripper clip of ammunition (10 rounds) and the slide holds open when the gun is empty.

The top of the C96 reveals the Waffenfabrik Mauser Log and the serial number right over the chamber. The nitrate blued parts make it a handsome gun with the last four digits of the serial number on the charging handle and the Crown U (Oberndorf proof).

This 94 year old gun has been cared for by other custodians to preserve it for us today in this pristine condition. The inside of the gun is clean and reflects the effort of custodial maintenance over the past 95 years.

It is entirely subjective to give any weapon a rating of excellent or fine, just as it is to declare it xx% blued or strawed. Few antique guns 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.


The Imperial Russians fell in love with both the 7.63 Mauser cartridge (aka .30 Mauser) and the Mauser Military Pistol, and were to become one of Mauser's best customers. The October Revolution did not change this fondness for the C96 and the 7.63 Mauser cartridge (it is said a C96 was one of the firearms used in the murder of the Czar and the Royal Family), and both pistol and cartridge remained in general use in the early years of Communist rule.


This is a rarely seen 1930, demonstrating all the characteristics of the "Transition" designation in such minty condition. Truly one  of the best Broomhandles' you can own.