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Thread: The best Mark 23 ever.

  1. #21
    AGG
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    Quote Originally Posted by Callahan View Post
    Five were imported to the U.S. That info came from G3Kurz (RIP). It is accurate because he was the one who imported them. In private message exchanges he told me that HK also made a few for use at trade shows in Europe. He didn't know the number, but said it wouldn't have been more than five, and possibly less. Of the five that came to the U.S., one is in the grey room, the rest were sold to private individuals as "used/demos". I've had contact with someone who has one (he sent me a photo), and I've heard (in an old post on this forum) of someone else who had one and traded it back to HK USA for another HK. That leaves 3 in the U.S. and 1-5 in Europe, for a maximum of 8 in civilian hands.

    As for the ones in Europe, I've seen two advertised online, but they were not for sale at the same time and I think it was actually the same gun that was sold and then resold (in both cases by gun shops in Germany).

    Here's a photo of that one:


    It resides in my gun safe.
    Always love seeing this--- based on my data, I am aware of six (6), "factory", USSOCOM's in the U.S., and one (1) in France (Callahan's)--- only yours is date-coded "KH", but in the correct serial number range!!!

    Tony

  2. #22
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    That is awesome you have that original mark 23 Callahan. Any idea how many rounds have been through it?

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by .45USP View Post
    @Hawk777 , great post. People love the Mark23 myself included, but it's interesting to hear that even the supposedly invulnerable beast would suffer a mere mortal pistols fate when subjected to being submerged if not cared for accordingly.
    Ya I think it was safe with its coatings but if you figure it had to be in water for years on different missions. It was mostly used by the SEALS and most of their missions they insert from subs with lockout trunks then come back same way. So the guns are getting wet while they are in trunk and diving and using their classified mini subs etc. Most stuff they do is classified but their guns are underwater alot and live in that salt water environment. Military keeps guns for 30 years or more so that adds up to alot of chance for rust etc. I have a passing interest in submarines and learn alot about operations from them from that.

    I dont have any details that aren't public record. I did have one friend that would know who said in the late 90s they were used to some extent on missions they went on. He said he carried one cause he liked the .45 round but was boarding an oil rig over the side and the drop leg holster got hung up on the railing and he was pinned somehow so he broke it loose and let the whole thing drop into ocean and never carried one again cause the size. He liked the weapon though just not the size.

    In that community though they are what I would call kept happy. If they want to carry another weapon not in inventory they can get it easily. Lots of Socom guys carried the 19 when the 226 was issue. Again SOCOM are about the only military group that cares about pistols or has any use. Main US Military treats pistols as if they could care less and never get used and rifle is primary weapon.

    Anyways from what I gather from him and others that it was loved other then its size and the 45 Tac was carried much more cause it was a mini Mark that was just as tough. If you look at 226 or HK45CT that is for Socom it doesnt have any of the crazy coatings just chrome lined and phosphate I am guessing cause they probably just pack them then clean them.

    The Mark is just so overbuilt which is what makes it a legend even when it didnt need to be HK went the extra mile and built the best they could regardless of price or size.
    Last edited by Hawk777; 08-24-2017 at 01:16 AM.
    So many HKs so little time.

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  5. #24
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    That is great info. Thank you. I definitely like the hk45. I worry about 45 super in the lighter guns. There are a lot of kaboom pics on the internet. And it looks like a lot of them are caused by residual chamber pressure as the slide pulls away from the barrel. I feel confident the mark 23 won't have that issue with good ammo

  6. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawk777 View Post
    Ya I think it was safe with its coatings but if you figure it had to be in water for years on different missions. It was mostly used by the SEALS and most of their missions they insert from subs with lockout trunks then come back same way. So the guns are getting wet while they are in trunk and diving and using their classified mini subs etc. Most stuff they do is classified but their guns are underwater alot and live in that salt water environment. Military keeps guns for 30 years or more so that adds up to alot of chance for rust etc. I have a passing interest in submarines and learn alot about operations from them from that.

    I dont have any details that aren't public record. I did have one friend that would know who said in the late 90s they were used to some extent on missions they went on. He said he carried one cause he liked the .45 round but was boarding an oil rig over the side and the drop leg holster got hung up on the railing and he was pinned somehow so he broke it loose and let the whole thing drop into ocean and never carried one again cause the size. He liked the weapon though just not the size.

    In that community though they are what I would call kept happy. If they want to carry another weapon not in inventory they can get it easily. Lots of Socom guys carried the 19 when the 226 was issue. Again SOCOM are about the only military group that cares about pistols or has any use. Main US Military treats pistols as if they could care less and never get used and rifle is primary weapon.

    Anyways from what I gather from him and others that it was loved other then its size and the 45 Tac was carried much more cause it was a mini Mark that was just as tough. If you look at 226 or HK45CT that is for Socom it doesnt have any of the crazy coatings just chrome lined and phosphate I am guessing cause they probably just pack them then clean them.

    The Mark is just so overbuilt which is what makes it a legend even when it didnt need to be HK went the extra mile and built the best they could regardless of price or size.
    Nice, one of my favorite parts of being a gun guy is the back stories around these platforms and guys personal experiences with them. Appreciate you sharing.

    On a side note, Any chance you could find the coordinates of where your buddy dropped his Mark23? maybe the guy pond fishing for his USP in the other thread could use his magnet to find it.... and hook me up lol.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark23appendixcarry View Post
    That is awesome you have that original mark 23 Callahan. Any idea how many rounds have been through it?
    I have no definite knowledge as I bought it from a gun shop. I have never personally shot it (I had another "ordinary" MARK 23 which I used for shooting, but I sold it about a year ago and I don't know how long I can hold off shooting the MK23), but there is a little of the black worn off the barrel (but not much).
    If "Dirty Harry" had been made in 1996:
    "I know what you're thinking: 'Did he fire twelve shots or only eleven?' Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement, I've kinda lost track myself. But being this is a HK MARK 23, the only offensive handgun in the world, and would blow your head clean off, you've got to ask yourself one question: 'Do I feel lucky?' Well, do ya, punk?"

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    Quote Originally Posted by AGG View Post
    Always love seeing this--- based on my data, I am aware of six (6), "factory", USSOCOM's in the U.S., and one (1) in France (Callahan's)--- only yours is date-coded "KH", but in the correct serial number range!!!

    Tony
    That's interesting because G3Kurz was very clear that he imported 5. I did hear that someone (I think it was Bo of Red Room fame - but I could be wrong) who had a MARK 23 slide remarked to "MK23 USSOCOM", is it possible that one of your six was remarked? Do the ones in the U.S. have consecutive serial numbers by any chance? As for the KH date code on mine, my guess (and it is only a guess - I've tried to contact HK Germany to get information, but with no results) is that when Jim ordered his for HK USA, they were produced in 1996 and so had KG date codes. I'm guessing they were a big hit at the trade shows and when word got back to HK Germany, someone had the bright idea to make a few more for European trade shows, but by then they were in 1997 and so they were marked with a KH date code.

    I suppose it is also possible that your number 6 in the U.S. was one of the ones made for Europe that someone later bought and brought back to the States, but if that is the case and it has a KG date code, that blows my theory of all the European MK23s having KH date codes.

  9. #28
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    Well I think I'll get a new one then. I didn't realize how few of the originals were out there. I'm sure those who have them will treat em a lot better than I'm going to. Plus buying a new H&K supports the company.

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    Oh by the way. In case anyone doesn't like this about their mark 23. If you put a rail adaptor and a light on your gun there is a fairly easy way to make it so you can turn on the light with your trigger finger. I have a TLR-2 HL G. You can just take the switch off the light and make a new one out of bent sheet metal that extends far enough to reach. I used 10 gauge stainless

  11. #30
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    Hello @Mark23appendixcarry and WELCOME to the Addiction!!!!

    I did the SAME DAMN THING when I joined in 2014 and I am now quite ashamed to admit here...in front of the "guys" (read: filthy enablers) that I am in treatment and going to meetings. I am now the proud owner of a MR762SD package (sans quietparts for godknowshowlong...) AND have @ghilliebear2000 building me a G3K !!! You see I feel your pain and empathize, but I digress.

    I share a Great Passion for all things MARK 23 and have spoken to many guys here before. Here's one for @Callahan , when you say "8 factory built, matching numbers, MK23 USSOCOMs in civilian hands" do you mean Frame, Slide and Barrel? Or are you saying they had matching s/n'd KAC cans also? We've spoken, and I've posted pics b/f Photobucket gave everyone Da FINGA, of my 3 sequentially serial numbered M ARK23 KG date code (1996), all WITH matching serial numbered KAC cans! My first one is my shooter, but the other 2 are safe queens.

    My plan is to wait until their 30th birthday, January 2026 or so, and give them to a gun auction house to see if I can double my investment or better. I personally think they're pretty rare and the way I ran into these matching unicorns was to buy all 3 from the old ORIGINAL KNIGHTS ARMAMENT showroom in Vero Beach, Florida. They moved years ago over a property tax dispute up to Titusville for better tax incentives. I am under the impression/notion (and have the internal Knights memo to Manufacture only 5 cans to match 5 sequential KG s/n's in 2007, 23-2979,2978,2977,2976,2975 ) that these with matching s/n'd cans are also, Very Rare.

    Any thoughts, expertise you have on the subject would be appreciated.

    I agree with just about everything else said in all the great comments. @Klaustrophobia is the only one BRAVE enough (read: Crazy) to send .45 Super through his beast of unknown date, so he might have some knowledge of loads/gun tendencies in that regard. And @azimuth , agreed...the best one is the one in your HAND !

    Quote Originally Posted by Callahan View Post
    In terms of shooting, I think they are all pretty much the same, except perhaps (and I would underline perhaps) those with the non-chrome lined barrels.

    In terms of collectable value, probably a an early KG model with "Mark 23" instead of "MARK 23". There are also about 40 (if my memory is correct -if it isn't someone else will correct it in a moment) MK23 USSOCOM marked slide and barrel kits (with no serial numbers on them) out there that were left over from military parts kits and were sold to civilians. And finally, there are at most 8 factory built, matching numbers, MK23 USSOCOMs in civilian hands that HK built for trade shows. But for those you would probably have to rethink "regardless of cost".
    Last edited by THRLSEKR; 08-24-2017 at 04:06 PM. Reason: gramma

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