This is a very fine condition, and very rare, pre-WWII Walther Die Schaftausfuhrung or “WSF” 16-gauge side-by-side shotgun that was manufactured in September 1933, just a few months after Hitler and the Nazi Party rose to power in Germany.
Walther manufactured two different models of shotgun in both 12-gauge and 16-gauge from around 1932 until around 1940. These shotguns have Purdey-style dual under-lugs, utilize the Anson-Deeley boxlock design, and have the Greener cross-bolt locking system. The two models are this particular shotgun, the Walther Die Schaftausfuhring, “WSF,” and the Walther Schaftausfuhrung – Doppelflinte, or “WSFD. “The principal difference between the two is the WSFD has a second or “duplex” safety sear. These shotguns could also be ordered with ejectors.
This particular shotgun is in very fine condition and is the WSF 16-gauge model that was manufactured in September 1934. The barrels are 29 ½” long, and the length of pull is 13 ½”. The 16-gauge chambers are 2 9/16” long.
Walther only manufactured the WSF Shotguns from 1932 until 1940 when they stopped producing sporting arms so they could focus on military-only contracts, to include the famous P.38, PP, PPK, and military rifles. It is estimated that Walther only produced about 3,000 shotguns during its entire production run making these shotguns very desirable and very rare. This shotgun, serial number 562, is a very early model that has Weimar proofs.
The barrels on this shotgun are in very fine, near mint condition, retaining 95% plus of the original blued finish throughout, and both bores are in mint condition with only a few very small spots of corrosion on the exterior of the barrels. The rib is solid matte and there is single steel bead front sight.
The 16-gauge chambers measure 2 9/16” and the extractor works perfectly. Both barrels are marked on the top, rear with “KRUPP-LAUFSTAHL" horizontally to the rib and with the Walther banner vertically at the breech.
Krupp is the famous steel and armaments company that made the barrels for Walther, and “Laufstahl” mean 'fluid-steel' as opposed to hammered Damascus barrels. The original upper sling swivel assembly is solidly screwed to the barrel assembly and it retains the majority of its original blued finish. The sling swivel is missing but the assembly will accommodate any type of swivel replacement. The Handguard Lug is solidly brazed to the bottom rib and has an assembly number “84” stamp. The bottom of the barrel assembly has the matching serial number “562,” along with proof stamps, to include Crown over “S” stamps and Weimar Eagle proof marks.
The lower edges of the barrels have “Nitro” and Crown over “N” nitro proof stamps as well as Weimar Eagle proof stamps. The bottom flats of both barrels have the gauge measurements, “16,” which means 16-gauge and they both have 65 mm chambers, which equals 2 9/16”. The flats also have the pre-Nazi Weimar Eagle proof stamps as well as numerous Crown over “U” proof stamps and several Crown over “S” and “W” proof stamps. The flat also has assembly numbers. The bottom of the left barrel has the date stamp “9 33,” indicating production in September 1933.
The receiver on this shotgun is in fine condition. The receiver retains the vast majority of its original blued finish throughout. Both the left and right side have the original acid-etched engraving with a duck and all of the engraved screws have unmarred slots. These screws also retain traces of their heat tempered blue finish. The bottom of the receiver retains 95% of its original blued finish with the acid-engraved Walther Banner and the “Waffenfabrik Walther / Zella-Mehlis (Thur.)” still crisp and the bottom screw is engraved and remains unturned.
The receiver tang exhibits a pewter patina towards the rear with much of the original blued finish forward of the safety, and the tang screw is engraved and has an unmarred slot. The Safety is imitation horn, and the checkering remains crisp with carry wear. The action Lever retains all of its original blued finish, and the lever screw is engraved with an unmarred slot. The checkering on the left side of the lever remains crisp. The top flats have a matte checkering and there are bright, heat-tempered blue finish cocked indicators on both top sides. The Water Table has the matching serial number “562” and the pre-war Weimar Eagle, Crown over “N” Nitro proof stamp and Crown over “U” proof stamp. The chamber bolsters exhibit a plum patina and have the most pronounced wear on the receiver. Both breech faces retain the majority of their original blued finish.
The original European Walnut stock is in very good plus condition. The stock exhibits beautiful figure throughout. There is a small crack emanating from the rear of the receiver tang slot to the rear, but it does not go deep, and the stock remains strong. The checkering on the pistol grip remains very crisp with normal field carry wear. The raised cheek piece exhibits minor marring. The original Trigger Guard is imitation horn over steel, which was similar to Bakelite, and there one small area of loss on the right side, below the front trigger, but it is barely noticeable. The guard screws retain all of their original blued finish have are engraved. Both original Triggers are present, and both retain the majority of their original blued finish. The original rear sling swivel is present, and it retains considerable original blued finish. The original Walther butt plate is present and is made from Bakelite. It has the correct Walther banner, and the checkering remains crisp. Both butt plate screws are replacement Philip’s head screws and should be replaced with flat head, single-slot screws.
The original Handguard is in fine condition. The checkering on the European Walnut stock is crisp with minor field wear. The metal hardware on the handguard, to include the spring-loaded button detent, retains the majority of their original blued finish with the bottom rear exhibiting a pewter patina. The interior hardware ledge has the matching serial number “562” stamp.
This is a very scarce and very fine condition pre-WWII Walther 16-gauge side-by-side shotgun from September 1933, the first full year of Walther WSF shotgun production. This shotgun is tight in battery and functions perfectly.