POTD: Another Failure – The Schwarzlose 1900 Toggle-Delayed Pistol


POTD: Another Failure – The Schwarzlose 1900 Toggle-Delayed Pistol

Welcome to today’s Photo of the Day! Here we have another failure in the book of Schwarzlose auto-loading pistols. Fortunately, Mr. Schwarzlose would end up making some successful machine gun contributions later on! This is the Schwarzlose 1900 or Model 1900 or Model 1901. I have read it as many names, but it is not entirely necessary. This little 30-caliber Schwarzlose 1900 autoloading pistol had its patent filed for in 1901. It uses a toggle delayed mechanism (similar to the luger but different enough). This design is only a prototype and its serial number is 25 which is the highest known number of these very rare pistols.

“This is an extremely rare early prototype Model 1900 pistol that was produced in extremely limited numbers. This design followed after the Schwarzlose “Standardt” model and is commonly referred to as a “toggle-top” pistol. In this design, the pistol uses a delayed-blowback type mechanism (where the breechblock is not locked) where the pivot pin/toggle joint is positioned above breechblock and frame. So when the pistol is fired, the complete toggle mechanism raises up to extract the spent cartridge and then closes, strips a round from the magazine and sits on top of the receiver…

It is estimated that only a very few prototype pistols were actually manufactured, so that the company had a working design so that it could file the patent. It has a fixed barrel that has graceful, fast taper profile similar in configuration to the early commercial Lugers, and it is fitted with a high positioned front sight (now missing) and only a sighting line milled through the top of the toggle assembly. The lower frame/grip of the pistol is shaped just like the earlier Strandardt model, and it uses the same 7 round clip, which is inserted through the butt of the pistol. The left side of the barrel, barrel extension and the rear section of the toggle assembly all have a “double crown/U” firing proofmark. It is correctly numbered “25” on the left side of the receiver and on the base plate of the magazine. It has a beautiful high polish blue finish with a nickel plated magazine and is fitted with checkered walnut grip.”

Schwarzlose 1900

Lot 1425: Schwarzlose Andreas 1900 Pistol 7.63 mm – Rare Early Schwarzlose Model 1900 Serial Number “25” Toggle-Top Prototype Semi-Automatic Pistol with Matching Number Magazine. (n.d.). Rock Island Auction Company. photograph. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from https://www.rockislandauction.com/detail/68/1425/schwarzlose-andreas-1900-pistol-763-mm.

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Writer | TheFirearmBlog Writer | AllOutdoor.com Instagram | sfsgunsmith Old soul, certified gunsmith, published author, avid firearm history learner, and appreciator of old and unique guns.

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