$269 is a good price here in California and depending on condition is a pretty good bargain. They usually come w/ 2 magazines, a holster, and a cleaning kit. The year of manufacture plays a part to as there were a number of improvements introduced over the years. If you go for it realize that the P-1 has an early model alloy frame and that regular use of plus powered ammo can and will damage the frame. The magazines don't always handle hollow points very well. The best ammo to use is basic 115 gr FMJ like the Wichester WB you get at Wal-Mart. It also about the cheapest. (but for some reason alot of owners have trouble with Remington ammo). The P1 is a military weapon built to take abuse, tolerances are a bit loose, so it is plinking accurate but not really marksman accurate. But it functions very smooth and with good balance. It is very easy to take apart and maintain.
This is a good site to learn all the particulars about the P-1 and other Walthers
Recommend going into the gallery and bringing up Kyrie Ellis's "Banner P1" Any Walther is going to have an assortment of markings and this pretty well explains everything you might see on a prospective purchase.
I bought a P1 years ago as an impulse buy before I knew much about it - It was a consignment piece not a recent import so I don't know how the previous owner used it. After about a 1K rounds of regular WWB ammo I discovered a hairline longitudinal crack in the frame, I actually felt the slight rise and had to buff the surface w/ emory cloth to see it. . So my P-1 has been retired to conversation piece status, but I really liked taking it out. At some point, when the chance arises, I want to purchase another for shooting - (I have spare parts :roll: ), I know much better now what to look for.
At $269, look at it as buying a cheap piece of history, rather than your primary go to gun.
If you visit other sites and ask around you will read stories of cracked frames and slides. It does happen, it happened to me. But it's almost always associated with the use of plus powered ammo or a gun that has been shot a lot. In the case of my gun I can tell from the marking that it was in service at least 15 years as an issued police side arm. While I never used plus powered ammo, I suspect the previous owner did, hence why he put it up for sale. The P-1, based on the German WWII P-38 sidearm, was a German army and police issue pistol. The design was in service for about 40 years so that should provide some reassurance for concerns about reliability.
If you get the P-1, know that only the front sight is adjustable for windage. The front blades are available in different heights (numbered 1-4) for up and down adjustment (or if you have a tall sight, then you do what I did, gring it down a little, test fire, and grind some more a little at a time until you get it dead on).
The rear notch can not be adjusted. Trying to strong arm adjust it will damage your gun.
Unless you have a very good reason, don't try to take apart the slide. It really isn't necessary for cleaning. (Spray in some gun blaster or some such with one of thos tiny tubes thru the firing pin hole, dry it out w/ compressed air, and use a drop of Remoil. The reason is the slide cover can be a b!tch to get on right, and if you don't, subsequent firing of the gun will send the slide cover and a bunch of tiny parts flying all over, some to parts unknown.
Some people recommend replacing all the springs, especially the recoil springs and magazine springs. I did but I wouldn't bother doing it again unless the gun has problems ejecting or feeding and only after I checked all the other possibilities. The P-1 can be ammo picky and simple mistakes can happen. Example, there are 4 ways to put the spring in the magazine, 3 of them are wrong.
It sounds like an interesting little gun. Maybe I'll look into getting one in the not too distant future. The design just happened to catch my eye and the price was nothing to complain about. Thanks for all the info NG.