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# 14280 - Swiss Target Rifle By J.V. Banziger
3/31/2012
St. Gallen, Switzerland

J.V. Banziger - 41 Cal 9.3/53 10.3/65R Banziger - 34 5/8 '' - Blue - 1678 ? NAME PLATE B.SHARP 1890 -

Double set triggers, Hammerless, Lever action, about 8 inches of rifling rest smooth bore, Octagon Barrel, Raised Cheek piece,41 Cal Rimfire Swiss CRTG. Has 10'' groove on barrel almost like groove to hold Scope clamps. We have been told it is Hammerli Martini action rifle smithed by J.V. Banziger of St. Gallen Switzerland who died in 1906. We have guessed that it was a special order possibly used by a sharpshooter. We would like to know more about the gun. It is not for sale. Pam & Joanne of Oregon

Answer:
Pam & Joanne- It sounds like a really neat gun, as one would expect from the superb craftsmen who have turned out watches and precision mechanical devices for centuries. Nearly as old a tradition is that of competitive rifle marksmanship among the Swiss. Thus you will find a wide variety of target rifles, either made from scratch, or using foreign actions, or based on Swiss military rifles. Similar to their German neighbors, the spirit of Schuetzenfest or shooting festivals is very strong, and even today there are hundreds of rifle matches throughout the country with many people participating.

I really cannot tell you much more about your specific rifle, because each of these is virtually handmade to a customer’s individual desires, although often fitting within specific limits set by the type of match it will be used in.

Swiss law requires all males to serve a short period in their Army. Then they are give a full automatic assault rifle and ammunition to take home and keep with them ready for use on a minutes notice should they need to defend the country. And, Switzerland has one of the lowest rates of gun violence in the world. Clearly the availability of “high power military assault weapons” cannot be a cause of gun violence. Perhaps the knowledge that all your neighbors are well armed may deter any impulses towards violent crime. The cultural traditions of the almost exclusively white European population of Switzerland may be a factor, especially when contrasted to the violent tendencies of some other cultures, where violence is rampant regardless of firearm laws. Whatever the factors are, the Swiss are a nation of riflemen, and enjoy their freedom. And, a very low crime rate! John Spangler


# 14431 - Excam Info
3/31/2012
Ken, Antelope, CA

Excam - Mod. GT 27 - .25 - 2.5 in. - Blue - 14785 -

The slide and barrel are blued, the grips are plastic. How old is my Exam 25 auto, mod gt 27 serial # 14785, thanks for your help, Ken.

Answer:
Ken, Excam imported the GT 27 in the 1980s. The pistol was a semi-auto, single action design with a 2.5 inch barrel. It was chambered in .25 ACP and had a 6 shot magazine. Pistols weighed 13 ounces and were available in standard blue alloy, satin chrome alloy, or with a steel frame, wood grips became standard in 1986. Values in the blue book for this model are in the $50 range. Marc


# 14441 - Jieffeco Value
3/27/2012
Cliff - Columbus Ohio

Jieffeco - Semi Automatic - 6.5mm 25 ACP - Blue - 49786 -

Automatic pistol Jieffeco Made in Liege Belgium Brevets 259178 - 265491 Davis Warner Arms Corporation New York what is the value of this gun made circa 1910 - 1920

Answer:
Cliff, the first Jieffeco pistols were designed by H. Rosier around 1907 and the relevant patent was assigned to Jannsen fils et Cie. The name for the pistol "Jieffeco " came from Janssen's involvement in the patent ownership (J.F. Co.). Jieffeco pistols were manufactured by Manufacture Liegeoise d'Armes a Feu Robar et Cie of Liege Belgium (Robar). Robar started out making cheap pocket revolvers around the turn of the century and then turned to automatic pistols about 1910. First model Jieffeco pistols were marked "PISTOLET AUTOMATIQUE JIEFFECO DEPOSE above BREVETES.G.D.G. PATENT 24875.08". Production of the first model, Rosier-designed pistol ended in 1914. After WWI, about 1921, a new model Jieffeco was marketed by Davis-Warner. Post-1921 Jieffeco pistols are marked "AUTOMATIC PISTOL JIEFFECO MADE IN LIEGE BELGIUM BREVETS 259178-265491 DAVIS-WARNER ARMS CORPORATION NEW YORK". Davis-Warner fell dormant some time in the 1920s, and the second Jieffeco was withdrawn from sale at that time.

As for value, I am sorry to say that there is not allot of collector interest in this type of pistol. I would expect to see one offered for sale at a gunshow in the $150 range. Marc


# 14277 - Magazine Placement On Automatic Weapons.
3/27/2012
David, University Park, Md

Bren, Sten & Owen - Various - .303/7.62X51, 9X19 - Various - Parkerized - VARIOUS -

I recently clicked onto the site of one of the major web dealers & saw a magnificent replica Bren gun, semi-auto, with a dozen magazines. It prompted me to look again at the Wikipedia articles on the Bren, the Owen & the Sten. I discovered that the Bren & its direct descendents are unique in the last several decades in being the only light machine gun with a top feeding magazine. It was popular and served several decades, in 2 calibers. I discovered that the Owen likewise is unique as an SMG having a vertical feed magazine. It was evidently well liked by the Australian & other forces for its stability & reliability. The Sten, on the other hand, spawned the Sterling, also with side feeding magazine. Both the Sten and the Sterling saw long, successful service. Overall, however, these examples are swamped by rifles and submachine guns with magazines that feed from the bottom up. The BAR was the American equivalent of the Bren, and the M14 I trained on looks to have a magazine position almost identical to that of the BAR. I was not an infantryman, but it would seem to me that a bipod-mounted LMG fired from the prone position would be easier to reload Bren style than BAR style. You can easily see what you are doing. Likewise with the Sten or Sterling as compared with an MP5 or other contemporary SMGs. So, can you comment on the paucity of side or top loading weapons in modern design? The only major recent variation on bottom-feed from the front of the trigger guard, still from the bottom, is the bull-pup design, such as in the Steyr AUG. (And that design goes back to the broom-handle Mauser.) Are there engineering or ergonomic reasons for the conventional designs, or just tradition?

Answer:
David- Excellent question! Every weapons designer has to choose from an infinite number of variables. Some specification are set by the potential customer (the customer is always right…especially if you want to get paid!). Other features are driven by separate choices- the caliber may limit the number of rounds in a magazine due to weight, size, or ability of follower springs to function reliably. Ergonomics certainly are a consideration, sometimes highly regarded by designers, other times ignored until user tests show problems. Sometimes there are no right or wrong answers, just preferences, each with advantages and drawbacks which different users may rank differently.

Starting with John M. Browning’s Automatic Rifle adopted in 1918: This was developed primarily for use in “marching fire” across no-man’s land and in cleaning out enemy trenches. As such, it would mainly be fired from the hip, and a bottom mounted magazine probably seemed as good as any. Browning’s initial design was for top ejection, later changed to side ejection. While Browning certainly could have started with a top mounted magazine, he used the space immediately behind and above the bolt for a locking lug recess, so trying to put the magazine on top would have necessitated moving the locking lugs elsewhere. Having the magazine on the bottom also allowed an uninterrupted field of view across the top of the BAR, so you would not be distracted by a big magazine sticking up. Also, was it better to have a low profile with the magazine on the bottom, or to have a magazine sticking up 8 inches or so above troops trying to remain concealed? Is it better to have the magazine opeining on the top, subject to all sorts of dirt, rain and crud falling into a complex mechanism, or keep the opening on the bottom where it is more protected?

For 9mm Sub Machine Guns, there is at least one (but I forget which one) which allows the magazine to feed from at least a 90 degree arc (side to top, or side to bottom?)

For specific reasons behind the choices made (if indeed, they are even known) you would have to do some detailed reading in old reports, or some of the excellent books based on those reports to see what the options were and why certain ones were selected. There is a superb book on the BAR, and several on SMGs. George M. Chinn’s five volume set “The Machine Gun” is a treasure trove of historical and technical information. Also, competent technical experts such as COL Chinn, COL G. B. Jarrett, Roy Dunlap, LTC John George, T.B. Nelson, M.M. Johnson and others all have commented on various weapons and their virtues and faults.

Bullpups are sort of a niche specialty which some like and others dislike. I dislike them all intensely, but your mileage may vary.

Tradition cannot be totally discounted, but most of these sorts of weapons were developed by guys who liked to “think outside the box” and had the ability to try just about anything they thought might work, so tradition was probably the least important consideration. Anyway, that’s what I think about it! John Spangler


# 14269 - M3 Carbine “Snooperscope” Infrared 20,000 V # 1
3/24/2012
Barry, Blaine, MN, USA

M3 Carbine - .30 Carbine - Blue -

I recently purchased an M3 Carbine 20,000 volt set 1. It has a battery still wrapped in brown paper and sealed in the box. I am assuming this is the 6 volt battery. How is this converted to 20,000 volts? Is there some kind of battery pack that I'm missing? I saw pictures of a display at the Utah Gun Collectors Association show. Do you have a working version of this gun or know someone who does? I am wondering what the chances are of getting this gun working are.

Answer:
Barry- The snooperscope sets are fairly common (we have two or three in our inventory we have not had time to put out), and many are missing the “power supply” unit which goes between the battery and the scope cables, and was carried in a tarred canvas knapsack on the back. Electricity is all magic stuff, so I don’t have a clue as to how they jack the voltage up or the other neat stuff that happens before it reaches the scope. (Let alone the image intensifying super-duper magic inside the scope!). I have never seen a loose power supply unit, and cannot offer much hope for finding one. The “Fight at Night” display of night vision devices shown at the Utah Gun Collectors Association can be viewed at http://ugca.org/07jan/night.htm if anyone is interested. There you can see some of the (nearly ancient) history of the early night vision devices, that are ineffective, heavy and clumsy compared to the modern stuff our troops use today. But, our troops have always deserved the best technology our nation can provide to help defeat our enemies and protect our troops. We do have copies of the manuals for the 20,000 volt unit on our military manuals catalog page (http://oldguns.net/catbookmanual.htm) if anyone needs one to help fix the magic in their unit. John Spangler


# 14429 - 30 Express Info
3/24/2012
Kim

Remington Springfield - 30 Express - 30 - 24 - Blue - 20542 -

star eye p y I cannot seem to find a manufacture year for this gun or a value

Answer:
Kim, Remington marketed the Model 30 Express rifle from 1926 to around 1931. The 30 Express was similar to Remington's Model 30 Sporting Rifle but improvements were added. That the Model 30 Express action was modified to cock on opening to reduce striker travel. The bolt shroud was shortened and a coil-type ejector spring replaced the original 'sliver' type. On the stock, the butt comb was raised and the finger groove was eliminated, checkering was added to the pistol grip and forend. Values in the blue book for Model 30 Express rifles range from about $200 to around $600 depending on condition. Marc


# 14434 - Cut Down Hoban 22
3/20/2012
Name Withheld

Hoban Mfg. Co. - # 45 - 22 Short/long & Long Rifle - 16-inch - Other - NONE FOUND ON FIREARM -

Hoban Rifle # 45 Hoban Mfg. Company Salem, Michigan. USA Was this originally a rifle made into a pistol grip or was it originally a pistol grip. It is painted silver now.

Answer:
Sir, John D. Hoban founded the Hoban Manufacturing Company in 1945. Hoban had learned the metalworking trade while he was employed at the Hamilton Rifle Company from Coello Hamilton and his plant manager, Brant Warner. When Hamilton started disposing of his firearms company in June of 1945, John Hoban bought all of the machinery, jigs and dies. He moved the equipment to his nearby hometown of Salem and started producing Model 45 rifles (named for the year in which they were introduced) by October of the same year.

The Model 45 was manufactured from 1945 to 1949, it was a turnbolt design with a pinned instead of threaded into the frame barrel, and a dummy sheet metal magazine. There was cocking knob on the rear of the bolt that had to be manually set. Stocks were made of ash or birch and there was a wooden hand guard that fit over the top of the barrel. The bolt was removed from the frame by holding the trigger down and pulling to the rear. Markings on top of frame were: Hoban Rifle No. 45, .22 cal. S-L & L.R., Mfd. by Hoban Mfg. Company, Salem, Mich., U.S.A. The Model 45 rifle's overall length was 34 inches and the barrel was 20 inches with 6 grooves, 1 turn in 18" and a right hand twist.

If your rifle has been shortened, there are some legal concerns that you should know about. The National Firearms Act passed in 1934 basically outlawed machine guns and sawed off shotguns/rifles. A sawed off ("short barreled") rifle is any rifle with a barrel length of less than 16 inches, with an overall length of less than 26 inches. Possession of an unregistered machine gun or sawed off rifle/shotgun is a federal felony with big hard time sentences and hefty fines. If your rifle is illegal, the best thing to do is contact your closest BATF office (blue pages, US Govt., Treasury Dept., BATF) and tell them that you found/inherited or were given this rifle (or whatever the case is) and want to know if it is legal to keep and if not, turn it in for destruction. If they confirm it is illegal then you can make arrangements for it to be turned over. Marc


# 14268 - M1941 Johnson Rifle
3/20/2012
Major Bob , Québec, Canada

Johnson - M 1941 Semi -auto Rifle - 30-06 - Standard 22`` - Parkerized - 0524 NO «PREFIX« -

30-06 over barrel ring, 41 under same. No matching numbers anywhere .All complete military configuration including bayo lug . No Israeli, import , US or other country markings. No unit , serial number or rack markings . Dear John, back from my latest mission which involved taking care of a few returning Canadian soldiers from theatre Afghanistan and the circumstances of their ill fate . One in a body bag and four on stretchers. God bless them and their families. God bless the young Americans doing the same sacrifices. Anyway, picked-up this Johnson from a stranger, cold call. The barrel has no groves ( riflings ) left and it is warped (bent I little ) , not straight. No rust of any kind. I have seen this on machine gun barrels that were abused. I have seen 1919 Browning .30 MG barrels in this condition and FN Mug's ( C-6 ) and .50 cal's . How could a semi- auto rifle fire enough rounds to burn its barrel ? My hypothesis is that it was fitted to a Johnson LMG at some point as an expedient during battle. Any ideas ? Does it fit the LMG at all ? Was the practice documented . Any idea of the theatre of operation where that could of happened .Other than that it is perfectly functional. Dings , cracks and gouges in expected places on stock and forend . Certainly does not look like a deer hunter special by the look of it. Seller told my an unbelievable story about his ex- wife's uncle who had been to war with it. Canadian soldier with a US unit of some kind. No details. Still I do not want to totally dismiss it out of respect to the individual who served his country like I do. Any idea's . Very best regards and thanks for answering my first post on my Remington-UMC, I have learned a lot. . Major Bob, a collector and a Canadian serviceman.

Answer:
Major Bob- Good to hear from you again. Thank you for your service to the freedom of all Americans, and indeed Western civilization as we know it. I join you in saluting our fallen and wounded neighbors to the north. Their contributions are too little known or appreciated on either side of the border.

I have no logical explanation for the excessive wear and bend in the barrel of a M1941 Johnson rifle. My only guesses would be that failure to clean resulted in rusting which was eventually and aggressively removed or shot out. The end might be attributed to the fact that the barrel is easily removed and perhaps someone misused it at a pry bar or something. Johnson barrels can be rebuilt with a new 4 groove barrel turned down to accept the breech collar and the front bearing collar and the sight and bayonet lug. (about half I see are like that already). I just do not know if the M1941 Johnson Light Machine Gun used the same barrels as the M1941 Johnson rifles or not. I highly recommend Bruce Canfield’s superb book “Johnson Rifles and Machine Guns” which may reveal the secret.

The 1st Special Service Force, also known as The Devil's Brigade or other nicknames was a joint World War II American-Canadian commando unit organized in 1942 and trained near Helena, Montana in the United States. The brigade fought in the Aleutian Islands, Italy, and southern France before being disbanded in December 1944. They did receive some Johnson Light Machine Guns, and possibly some rifles, so the old vet’s story may have some truth to it. A good find, even with the barrel problem. John Spangler


# 14265 - Remington .45 AR (.45 Auto Rim) Ammunition
3/17/2012
Austin,

Remington - .45 AR - Blue -

I found a Remington .45 AR round in a field and it looks fairly old. I was wondering what type of gun shot this round, and when these types of rounds were made.

Answer:
Austin- the .45 AR headstamped cartridges are actually a version of the .45 Automatic made with a rim. These were specifically for use in the Model 1917 revolvers by Colt or Smith & Wesson, which originally used the .45 ACP cartridges with “half moon” clips holding three cartridges each. The clips kept the case in proper position to be struck by the firing pin. Later the M1917 revolvers were made with chambers that would engage the mouth of the case, so the clips were not completely necessary. Most of the .45 Auto-Rim cartridges were made circa 1920s-1960s. John Spangler


# 14444 - WWII Ruger?
3/17/2012
Cliff, Las Vegas Nevada

Blue -

I was wondering if you might be able to help me find a world war 2 era, .22 caliber Ruger pistol. With matching serial numbers all around. I am looking to purchase this handgun as a gift to my father, who is a Vietnam veteran.

Answer:
Cliff, I am sorry to have to tell you that your quest to locate a WWII vintage Ruger 22 Pistol is impossible, because Sturm, Ruger & Company was founded by William B. Ruger and Alexander McCormick Sturm in 1949. Possibly you were thinking Luger instead of Ruger. There are 22 caliber pistols that look like the Luger, but for the most part, they are not military issue and most were made after WWII had ended. I suggest that you get your father a WWII Luger in 9MM. I would be happy to help you find one of those. Marc


# 14430 - Savage 380
3/14/2012
Tom, Dallas, Pa USA

Savage - ??? - 380 Auto - 4'' - Blue - 12586B -

Savage Quality with Indian Logo on Grips, SAVAGE stamped on frame. patent Nov.21 1905 Looking for any info on this gun

Answer:
Tom, I need to know the model to be able to give you a good answer your question, but since Savage only made three models of 380 pistols, there are some things that I can tell you. Your pistol is either a Model 1907, a Model 1915 or a Model 1917.

The Model 1907 was manufactured from 1910 to 1917 and it was available in.32 or .380. It came with a blue finish, fixed sights, exposed cocking piece (hammer) and metal grips on early .32 ACP models or hard rubber grips on all others.

The Model 1915 was manufactured from 1915 to 1917, it was similar to Model 1907, with a grip safety, but it had no visible cocking piece.

The Model 1917 differed from the Model 1915 in that it had a spur hammer (cocking piece) and trapezoidal grip frame, it was manufactured from 1920 to 1928. Marc


# 14263 - Marlin Date Of Manufacture
3/14/2012
Canada

Marlin - 1893 - 38-55 - 26'' - Blue - 142830 -

patented by Marlin Firearms, Springfield CT 1881 1883 1892 Wondering if you may know the year of manufacture as I am trying to get a Form 6 from ATF to personally transport it to the US. I have been in contact with ATF and the US Border service and only need the Manufacture date. Thank you. Karl

Answer:
Karl- Your best bet is to go straight to the original records. For a fee (about $50) The Cody Firearms Museum can provide a letter from the original Marlin factory records showing the date it was shipped and the configuration. Check with them for details on how to do this: http://www.bbhc.org/explore/firearms/firearms-records/

When dealing with the BATFE or Customs people it is always a good idea to have all your paperwork ready to go and be able to fully document anything they might question. You will never win an argument with them (even if you are 100% right) so try to get as much approved before hand as possible. Good luck. John Spangler


# 14254 - Additional Info On Question #14146
3/10/2012
Fausto Salem NH

N`A - N/A - N/A - N/A - Other - N/A -

Re: # 14146 - “Sheriff Type Markings” On Winchester 1873 The description of the shield, star and markings sounds like a late 1800s Chilean cartouche. I have seen similar ones on Dutch Beaumont rifles imported to Chile in 1979 for the ''Saltpeter War''

Answer:
Fausto- Thank you for this information! John Spangler

Regarding question and answer # 14146 - “Sheriff Type Markings” On Winchester 1873 The description of the shield, star and markings sounds like a late 1800s Chilean cartouche. I have seen similar ones on Dutch Beaumont rifles imported to Chile in 1879 for the ''Saltpeter War''


# 14345 - Winchester Model 1904
3/10/2012
Anthony, Oakdale, TN

Winchester - 04 - .22 - Blue - NONE -

My dad was going through his gun safe and found a Winchester Model 04 .22 Short, Long, and Extra Long. What can you tell me about this gun?

Answer:
Anthony, Winchester Models 1900, 1902 and 1904 were all single- shot bolt-action .22 caliber rifles that were based on a design by the famous Utah gun maker, John M. Browning. The Model 1904 was a slightly more expensive version that featured a one- piece plain gumwood straight-grip stock with a metal trigger guard that gave the rifle a pistol grip feel, and a Schnabel tip forend. The 1904 had a 21 inch barrel and weighed about 4 pounds empty. Rifles were chambered for .22 Short and Long until 1914 when the .22 Extra Long was added. The .22 LR cartridge was added in place of the Extra Long in 1927. Factory records indicate that the first delivery of Model 1904 rifles to warehouse stock was made on July 5 1904. The model was produced between 1904 and 1931 and about 303,000 rifles were sold. Marc


# 14252 - Determining If Winchester 1895 Is A True Carbine
3/6/2012
Mike

Winchester - 1895 - 30-40 - 22 - Blue - 100233 -

Winchester 1895 carbine s/n 100233 I want to buy a Winchester 1895 carbine s/n 100233 made in 1915. Is there any way to make sure if is a true carbine and not a chopped up rifle? It has military sights and a 22'' barrel. Mike

Answer:
Mike- For a fee (about $50) The Cody Firearms Museum can provide a letter from the original Winchester factory records showing the date it was shipped and the configuration. Check with them for details on how to do this: http://www.bbhc.org/explore/firearms/firearms-records/ Your other option is to have it examined by someone who really knows a lot about Winchester Model 1895s, but I do not know anyone to recommend. John Spangler


# 14342 - 12A DOM
3/6/2012
Bill

Remington - 12A - .22 - 21.5 - Blue - 541514 -

When was my Remington Model 12A manufactured? It has no barrel code so I assume it was before 1921. Thanks, Bill

Answer:
Bill, sorry, without a barrel code, I am unable to tell you exactly when your Remington was manufactured. I can tell you that the Remington Model 12 which was later designated the 12A, was manufactured from 1909 to 1936. The Model 12 was a hammerless slide action .22 rifle that came with a 22 inch barrel, open sights, tubular magazine and a plain grip walnut stock. Remington also offered the Model 12B which was a gallery model with an octagon barrel chambered in .22 short, the 12C which had a 24 inch octagon barrel and came in grades D,E and F, the 12C NRA target, and the 12CS which was chambered in .22 Remington Special. The Remington Model 12 is one of my favorite 22's, my father had one when I was young and I spent many happy hours target practicing and hunting varmints with it. Marc


# 14250 - Springfield Maybe Cadet?
3/3/2012
Rhonda

Springfield - Maybe Cadet? - 31 1/4 - Don't Know - NONE -

Marked ''U.S. SPRINGFIELD'' w/ eagle, painted number ''5D8'', ''VP P'' on barrel, stamped letter ''P'' in a circle, ''I'' on barrel, ''US'' mark, square stamp with ''1890'' and three capital cursive letters possibly ''SMP''. I was told that this gun was a civil war muzzle loader converted to a cadet training rifle. Just wanted to know if this was correct and what more can you tell me about the gun?

Answer:
Rhonda- Without some good photos I am not able to tell you anything about this one. The usual barrel length choices are 22, 29.5 or 32.6 inches, so we do not have a match there. If you are measuring the total length of the barrel and receiver to get 31.25 inches, then it might be one of the oddball short variations made in very small numbers. But, I tend to accept that someone has correctly identified this as one of the abortions created by the surplus dealers for sale to military schools as “cadet” guns. Sorry I cannot tell you anything for sure. John Spangler


# 14340 - Consecutive Taurus Collectible?
3/3/2012
Jason key West. Fl

Taurus - Single Action LCD - 45 - 8'' - Stainless Steel - YJ340148 -

I have the same gun with the consecutive serial number. Does that make them collectible

Answer:
Jason, thanks for visiting our site and submitting your question. For many firearms that are popular with collectors, having two examples with consecutive serial numbers does add to value. I am sorry to say that in this case, although Taurus makes some fine firearms, there is not allot of collector interest in them. Taurus values are mainly as reliable, well made shooters, so consecutive serial numbers probably do not make much difference. Marc


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