Antique and Collectable Firearms and Militaria Headquarters OldGuns.net FineOldGuns.com

 

 

Questions And Answers Page

If you have a question about firearms and you want it posted on this page click here.

Return to Collectors Headquarters.

Click here to go to the question and answer monthly index.

Click here to go to the question and answer subject index.


# 10977 - Spencer Rifle Date Of Manufacture
4/30/2005
Tyler, Traverse City, MI

Spencer - 60R - 30'' - Don't Know - 6416 -

I would like to know a possible date that this gun was manufactured?

Answer:
Tyler- The Spencer rifles with 30 inch barrels were made for Army or Navy use during the Civil War. The Navy rifles were numbered 1 to 750 and delivered circa 1862-1864. The 11,470 Army rifles were mixed in with carbine serial numbers, and were delivered in 1863-64. Yours was probably made prior to May of 1863. John Spangler


# 10960 - Unknown Remington.
4/30/2005
Chris, Clarksville, TN

Remington - Not Sure - Not Sure - Not Sure - Blue -

I have an old rifle with the year '1918' stamped on the receiver. It looks like an old German Mauser rifle from world war I, but the receiver says 'Remington' on it (it doesn't look like any U.S. service rifle that I have ever seen). Do you know what it may be?

Answer:
Chris- Sorry, we have no idea what this might be. John Spangler


# 11496 - Rohm 44
4/30/2005
Stephen

Sontheim / Brenz - 57 - 44 MAG - 4 In. -

Has a German style eagle with an ''N'' underneath it on the barrel and on the frame on the left side. Next to the one on the frame, is a double ''H'' (HH) with a leaf on the right side. I've done a search on your website and haven't seen a 44 cal s/b in the q/a site... Was wondering if this would be a reliable gun...Was given to me by a good friend...Shoots good, but needs some re- smithing done to it. Is this even worth the effort?

Answer:
Stephen, it is good to hear form someone like you who follows instructions and checks previous answers before submitting their question.

Ian Hogg And John Weeks book "Pistols Of The World" lists the RG-57 As a strengthened version of the high-quality (in their opinion) Rohm six-shot swinging cylinder revolver. It was is available in ,38 Special, ,357 Magnum, .41 Magnum, ,44 Special, ,44 Magnum or ,45 Colt with four or six inch barrels standard.

Personally, I have never liked Rohm firearms much and I don't think that it would be worth the money or effort to have one repaired. I would never buy a Rohm revolver, but since you got yours as a gift, at least the price was right. I would advise you to have it checked for safety by a good gunsmith before you fire it. Marc


# 11498 - CTG?
4/26/2005
Richard, Clearlake, Ca

Smith & Wesson - 14-4 - 38 special CTG - 6'' - Blue - 27k6700 -

No special markings, but it has I believe a front target sight, hammer and trigger !? What does ''CTG'' stand for ?

Answer:
Richard, CTG stands for cartridge. Marc


# 11499 - Arisaka Value
4/26/2005
Alan

Arisaka - 7.62 I Think - 26 5/8 Inches - Don't Know - 62540 -

fold down site, and fold down tripod, chrysanthemum brought to the states after world war one, and the banner is in great shape still sharp I would like to get the value of the gun its in great shape no rust

Answer:
Alan, suggest you check the OldGuns.net "Foreign Longarms" catalog, there are several Arisakas listed for sale there. You can see what John and I think that they are worth. Marc


# 11502 - 1918 Nazi Luger?
4/26/2005
John

Lugar - 1918 - 9MM - 4in. - Blue - 9082 -

Matching Nos. 1918 stamp on barrel Nazi eagles marked also. Need take down instructions, also will this weapon dry fire.

Answer:
John, it is spelled Luger not "Lugar". The Nazis were not stamping Lugers when your pistol was manufactured in 1918. It is possible that the stampings you mention are Nazi eagles but it is much more likely that they are WWI vintage German proof marks.

Dry-firing an old Luger is never a good idea, the firing pin could be broken or other damage could result. Luger firing pins should be numbered, so if you have to replace one, the pistol will be mismatched and value will be lowered by as much as 50%. To avoid dry-firing a Luger, it is possible to un-cock it. To do this, FIRST MAKE SURE THE PISTOL IS NOT LOADED. Then hold the Luger in one hand and point it in a safe direction. Pull the toggle all of the way back with the other hand. While still pointed in a safe direction, slowly lower the toggle until it stops but is not all the way closed. While continuing to hold the toggle with one hand, depress the trigger with the other and slowly let the toggle close completely. The pistol should now be un-cocked.

Composing the above un-cocking instructions has depleted my instruction writing quota/tolerance for the morning. For take-down instructions I suggest that you refer to the NRA book - "Firearms Assembly: The NRA Guide to Pistols and Revolvers". There should be a copy at your local library unless they are too politically correct to carry it. Some libraries are all to happy to make porn available to minors on the Internet but they draw the line at evil gun books. If the NRA guide is not at your local library, it is available from the NRA for under $15.00. Marc


# 10957 - Whereabouts Of Woolwich Gun Workers
4/26/2005
Ray London England

Blue -

A number of gun workers from Woolwich Arsenal were sent to Buffalo ? during the WW1 We have the list of names from ships record They were listed as Explosive workers Is there any one that might be able to have any information on there Work place Thanks

Answer:
Ray- I believe that the English arsenal at Woolwich is mainly associated with artillery. During World War I the United States provide all sorts of arms and ammunition to England and the [now ungrateful] French, in quantities that are unimaginable (and impossible to achieve) today. Manufacturing facilities once covered much of the eastern half of the United States, with hundred, or even thousands of small foundries or chemical plants. Economics, automation, and environmental regulations have forced most out of business. The upper midwest is now known as the "rust bowl" littered with abandoned factories, and disgruntled union members who naively believe that the rich corporate bosses screwed them, and that the "making and moving things" jobs their elders told them about will someday return. In any case, passengers disembarking at Buffalo could have headed for any of hundreds of such manufacturing facilities to transfer their skills to American workers, or t serve as inspectors for munitions being made for our allies. John Spangler


# 10955 - 1898 Krag Rifle History
4/23/2005
Daniel, Austin, TX

Springfield Armory - 1898 - 30 - Blue - 240252 -

U stamp on front ring, Circle w/P engraved or stamped on bottom above trigger, small dime-sized hinged flip out on butt of gun. I was curious to know the history of this gun, and if you can look up anywhere when and by whom this gun was used in service? And what definite caliber it was. It is my grandfathers, and prob. then some.

Answer:
Daniel- Your rifle was made around December of 1899, as a Model 1898 infantry rifle in .30-40 Krag caliber. Many in that serial number range were later issued to militia units in New York or Maryland, and a number of them reportedly had bad barrels. There is no specific history available on this rifle. Our other site http://armscollectors.com has the most complete list of U.S. military arms for which any history ahs been located, so people should check there to see if their gun is listed. John Spangler


# 11493 - Remington Mod 24 Patent Dates
4/23/2005
James Seguin, TX

Remington - 24 - 22 - Blue - N/A -

I have a Remington model 24, that has been being passed down from father to son. I was trying to do some research on it, when I noticed you saying they started making them in 1924. That's weird because mine has December 9th 1916 on it. What's going on here. Also were could I get a parts manual for it.

Answer:
James, actually it is not weird at all that your rifle may have various older dates stamped on it. The dates that you see are most likely patent dates. Patent dates are the dates that patents were granted for various devices or mechanisms that are used in the construction of the rifle. It is not uncommon for firearms to incorporate patents that were granted many years before a design was introduced. Since this model has not been manufactured for over 50 years, you will probably have a hard time locating an owners manual. Marc


# 10942 - Flintlock Over Under Shotgun
4/23/2005
Rex, Phoenix, Arizona

Blue -

Ludicrous question time. While reading a story of the American Revolution a double barreled shotgun of an over and under design with double triggers was described. To me, that period means a muzzle loading, black powder arm with flintlock ignition. I have never heard of such a weapon and have a difficult time even imagining one. Did over and under shotguns exist in that era? If not, what are the earliest known over and under shotguns and their ignition systems? Thank you.

Answer:
Rex- Great question! Double barrel guns have been around a long time, including double barrel shotguns. Usually they are side by side types. They were rather complicated to make, heavy, fragile and expensive. Their use tended to be limited to rich or royal folks who could afford such nifty toys. A somewhat more common (but still seldom seen) double barrel percussion gun called the "swivel breech" had an over-under barrel arrangement. These essentially are a conventional flintlock cut in half just ahead of the hammer. The back half has a large pin sticking out the front. The two barrels slide back over that pin and can be turned or swiveled. Each barrel has the front half of a flintlock (the pan and frizzen) attached. When the first barrel is lined up the hammer is cocked and fired. The barrels are rotated around the pin so that the other barrel is on top, the hammer cocked and it is ready to fire again. A few years ago Beretta had some sort of commemorative over-under percussion shotgun, so there is an example of a percussion era over-under. In the history of firearms there are an unbelievable number of innovative ideas some incredibly clever, others ridiculously impractical or absurdly bizarre. Often the old ideas failed because they lacked critical materials or technology at the time. Therefore never automatically discount historical references to oddball firearms. Of course, there is always the possibility that the author is totally incorrect, so challenge such accounts if you like. John Spangler


# 10650 - S&W .38 Double Action Perfected Model
4/19/2005
Norm

Smith & Wesson - ? - 38 S&W CTG - 6" - 58843 -

Top of barrel - Smith & Wesson Springfield Mass Patented Feb 6,06 Sept 14, 09 Dec 29, 14 Left side of barrel 38 S&W CTG serial number on frame butt and back of cylinder. Top Break with blade sight /release on top and also on left side frame / Black plastic grips S&W at top / 5 shot / Small frame. Any help you could give me as to manufacture date, normal use for pistol, value if any, history. Thank You, Norm

Answer:
Norm, you have a S&W .38 Double Action Perfected Model, this model was the last of the S&W top break revolvers. S&W manufactured a total of 59,400 from 1909 to when the model was discontinued in 1920, serial number range was 1 to 59400. Your serial number is close to the end of the serial number range so I estimate that the revolver was manufactured between 1918 and 1920.

The Perfected Model was designed for law enforcement use, it differed markedly from preceding S&W .38 revolvers because it had an extra frame lock and a solid frame with integral trigger guard (trigger guards on earlier models were separate from the frame). The extra lock was released by a thumb catch on the left side of the frame, in much the same way as the catch on a later S&W swing-out cylinder revolvers.

Perfected Model revolvers were available from the factory with either blue or nickel finish in barrel lengths of 2 (extremely rare), 3¬, 4, 5, or 6 inches. Blue book values for this model range from $250 to about $850 depending on condition and barrel length. Marc


# 10648 - Ranger 101.16
4/19/2005
Brian, Anderson, In.

Ranger - 101.16 - 22 Short / Long - 24'' - Blue - 2094577, 2223093 -

I bought this rifle back in 1982 @ a flea mkt. I was just wondering who made it and what it is worth. I paid $60.00 for it then, barrel was rusty , I cleaned it and had it blued and I re-did the stock, its a good shooting gun, I have shot allot of squirrels with it. thank you for your time

Answer:
Brian, I was unable to find who manufactured your rifle, there was no reference to the model in any of my books. The value for this type of rifle is usually about what you paid for it, maybe a little less. I would wager that the value of the enjoyment you have known while re-finishing your rifle and hunting with it is much higher than the original cost. Marc


# 10889 - M1A1 Carbines
4/19/2005
Rob, Phoenix, AZ

Inland - M1A1 Carbine - .30 Carbine - Don't Know - 5244903 -

inland barrel 6-44, inland receiver, P on handle of stock, cross barrels on handle of stock, AAY on stock. I have a paratrooper carbine that is in pristine condition. not familiar with all the different markings. what are these worth? thanks a million!

Answer:
Rob- The M1A1 carbines with the folding stocks for paratroop use were ONLY made by Inland, but during overhaul it is possible that any make action could end up in a folding stock as a M1A1. However, collectors prefer those made by Inland. The P and crossed cannon [Ordnance Department symbol] show that it was proof fired and accepted by the Ordnance Department, probably when it was first delivered by Inland. The AAY indicates it was overhauled at Augusta [Georgia] Arsenal at some point and the same barreled action may or may not have ended up in the same stock, but as it went out the door, it was accepted as ready for issue by the inspectors at Augusta. As far as value, these are very popular with collectors, especially those in three free states. The captive populations of Kalifornia and some other states run by idiots have "assault weapon laws" which ban these guns under the pretext of fighting crime, which is nonsense, but accepted by the increasingly gun-dumb public. For an all correct example made by Inland in a plausible serial number range, I have seen prices ranging from $900 to $2500 depending on the condition or greed of the seller. For examples by any maker in one of the thousands of repro folding stocks the value is about $50-100 more than for a similar condition carbine with a regular stock. John Spangler


# 10888 - Restore Versus All Original Or Mixed Parts Guns
4/16/2005
Ken- Iron Mtn., MI

Blue -

Hey guys- please answer this question. What's all the fuss these days about ''restoring'' M1 Garands and M1 carbines so that they have all-matching parts? Back when I used to collect them in the '70's and '80's, they were collectible just as they were. In fact, they were more desirable without parts getting switched. Doesn't altering a collectible weapon by making all its parts of the same mfg. just make it a put-together parts rifle? Why would any collector pay big bucks to buy a rifle that has been tampered with in this way? I am CONFUSED. KD

Answer:
Dear confused- Collectors are strange people, with individual tastes as well as a strong herd mentality. Some types of collectors are fanatics about original everything, while others like original appearance, even it is the result of a complete restoration. (Compare the antique furniture twins on Antiques Roadshow with the guys at a car show looking at a 1964 Mustang with fresh paint, new tires, new upholstery, new brakes, drums, plugs, and carpet. The car guys accept that there will be things done to restore the car to its original factory appearance and keep it safe to drive. Some gun collectors feel that way too, especially with military arms. The Colt or Winchester guys seem to be more of the herd that prefer original rust regardless. Some military collectors are very content with examples that have the expected mixing of parts which resulted from being used in the field and/or arsenal overhauled. Supply and demand seem to dictate that an all original unmodified military gun is worth a lot more than one that has had all the proper original parts gathered up and used to "restore" it. Less appreciated (hey, laugh, it's a pun!) are the "mixmaster" guns that actually reflect the configuration of the guns in service a few years after they were delivered. Something for every taste or every pocketbook! John Spangler


# 10885 - Model 1917 Remington Sniper Rifle?
4/16/2005
Peter, Henderson, Nevada

Remington - 1917 - 30.06 - 27'' Including Chamber Or 25 1/2'' I Think - Blue - 498503 -

Model of 1917 over Remington over serial #, Flaming cannonball on left side of receiver at 45 degree angle, ''E'' on every moving part visible, ''R'' on front sight, very small eagle head on butt plate and on underside of cartridge magazine (near trigger), flaming cannonball on barrel over 8 and 18. First, I won this rifle at a Marine Corps birthday raffle and they had it labeled as a 1917 Enfield 30.06 WW I sniper rifle. I think the little ''E''s threw them. So it came with the bayonet and scabbard does this increase the value? Second I would like to zero and fire this weapon but I cannot see any way of adjusting the front sight. Should I leave this to a gunsmith or should I not fire it at all? By the way the Bayonet scabbard is marked with ''RE'' on the throat and tip, while the blade is 17'' long and is marked with Remington (the letters forming a circle) under 11 & 16 under 1913 and on the reverse either ''SA'' or ''8A'' and the serial number is on the pummel 210525 Thanks for your time and consideration.

Answer:
Peter- Thank you and all the other Marines for their outstanding service to our country. Your rifle is a U.S. Model 1917, and since there are a mix of E and R marked parts (and probably some with W also) it has been overhauled at least once. To get an idea of the value you can compare yours with the ones on our collectible U.S. longarms page and the bayonets on the edged weapons page. The bayonet markings are actually those for a British Pattern 1913 bayonet, which is identical to the U.S. Model 1917 bayonet except for the markings. As far as adjusting the sights, you are correct that there is no windage adjustment, other than moving the front sight a bit. This should be a one time adjustment to get the rifle zero set and after that you will have to hold the rifle off to the left or right to compensate for any wind drift. For all practical purposes, most shooters lack the skill to use windage adjustments effectively. (Except serious target shooters and Marines who are all riflemen, and usually darn good ones!). None of the M1917 rifles were ever designated as "sniper rifles" for U.S. military use. John Spangler


# 10642 - GI Bring Back Walther
4/16/2005
Keith, Brunswick, GA

Walther (?) - PP - 7.65 - Blue - 392541 -

This piece has all the looks of a garden variety Walther PP except 1: The finish is poor - not polished as in other pieces I have seen - one can see some remnants of milling marks, and 2. Does not contain any information about the weapon (i.e., it doesn't even say Walther.) The only marks are on the right side of the receiver 392541 and slightly below, p Below that number is ac. On the right side of the frame are the markings 395095 and then slightly below, p. The grips are wood and say Walther, but I don't know if the grips are original or replacement. I suspect this is either late war production when such niceties as proper markings and finish was not important, an East German piece, or some other knock-off. Can you tell me the origin of this piece and its value? Thanks.

Answer:
Jeff, the tip off to the identification of your pistol are the letters ac and the mismatched serial numbers. A U.S. military unit that captured the Walther plant at the end of the war had a number of Walther pistols assembled for their use. The stories vary, some claim the GI's did the assembly, others that they ordered the workers to keep assembling pistols from parts, others that the workers assembled pistols on their own and sold them for cigarettes and army food. Whatever happened many GIs brought back mismatched Walther pistols with pressed wood or reddish grips. These pistols are often referred to as "GI bring back Walthers". The pistols have mismatched serial numbers, and are also missing the standard German proof and final inspection stamps. As you mentioned the machining is rough. This was typical of all German pistols of this era. The finish is also poor. While they are not as highly prized by collectors as an all correct and matching, made for the German Army Walther PP pistol, the GI bring backs are a collecting specialty in themselves. Marc


# 11483 - Mossberg 320 In Finland
4/12/2005
Markku, Kerava, Finland

Mossberg - 320 K - 22 S-L-LR - About 22 Inches - Don't Know - 324 -

O.F.Mossberg&sons.inc New haven.Conn.U.S.A model 320 K 22 S-L-LR and I'm not sure that serial number ,but is only number that I found my gun What is the year when this gun is made ,and is there any collection value ? I got this gun to my grant father. I hope you understand my bad English and thank to you.

Answer:
Markku, greetings to Finland, your English is much better than my Finnish. Mossberg manufactured the Mossberg 320 rifle from 1960 to 1980. The 320 was a single shot bolt action, junior target model that made use of Mossberg's new closed breech design. Model 320 barrels were 24 inches in length, overall length was 43.5 inches and overall weight was 5.75 pounds. Model 320 Monte Carlo hardwood Stocks had a walnut finish, swivels and pistol grip. Sights were front ramp and rear aperture.

There is not much collector interest in this type of rifle here in the USA, values for them are usually in the $75.00 or less range. If this rifle was a present from your Grandfather, sentimental value will be much higher. Marc


# 10634 - Type 3 PP 95%
4/12/2005
Michael

Walther - PP - 7.65mm -

Right side barrel and slide eagle over n , left side slide Waffenfabrik Walther,Zella-Mehlis(Thur.) Walther's Patent Cal ˙7.65m/m also on left slide and frame is some kind of mark with a star in center over WaA359 . nice finish ˙blueing ˙. Gun is about 95 % My question is how old is this gun and what might it be worth, not for sale was my late father's

Answer:
Michael, the Walther PP pistol was first manufactured by Waffenfabrik Walther at Zella-Mehlis, Germany, from 1929 to 1945, PP stands for Police Pistol. The eagle over N marking that you describe is a German commercial test proof whose design was set forth in the National Proof Law of June 7, 1939, and which became effective April 1 1940. The 'N' is an abbreviation for Nitro (smokeless) powder. The other mark should be a stylized eagle over WaA359, this is the German WW-II Heerswaffenamt inspector's mark on arms manufactured at Walther, Zella-Mehlis, Germany.

Your pistol is what collectors call a type 3, these were manufactured with the a high quality Walther commercial finish and slides were marked with the Walther legend on the left side. The first Walther PP serial number was 750000, numbers increased from there until they reached one million, then a new series was initiated which began at 100000 with the added letter suffix "P", your pistol falls into this block. All serial number records for PP pistols were destroyed in the war so there is no way to confirm the date of manufacture. My estimate is that your pistol was manufactured circa 1942 to 1943. Values for your pistol if it is all matching and in 95% condition would be in the $700 to $1000 range. Marc


# 10880 - Colt Model 1909 Markings
4/12/2005
Jennifer, Alabama

Colt - 1909 US Army Revolver - .45 - Long - Blue - 176119 !?!?!!! -

Left side of barrel - ''Colt D.A. 45''; bottom of barrel - ''UNITED STATES PROPERTY''; top of barrel - ''COLT'S PT FA MFG CO HARTFORD CT USA''. Faint colt horse marking on left side, right underneath cylinder latch. Underneath crane is the serial number 176119 and what appears to be another faded serial # underneath (maybe someone tried to erase it?). Above the serial # is a letter too small for me to quite make out, but it looks like it's either a ''B'' or an ''E''. Underneath the serial # is what appears to be the letter ''P''. On the back edge of the cylinder is an ''E'' which can be seen when the gun is opened for loading. Above the cylinder latch in the corner is a small circle with the initials ''G'', ''B'', and ''S'' inside the circle. I am inquiring about the authenticity and value of what appears to be a 1909 US Army Revolver. The gun originally belonged to my great-grandfather (my father's grandfather) and I don't know where or how he acquired it. My mother's father saw the gun, took a liking to it, and begged and begged for it until my great-grandfather finally let him have it. Apparently my grandfather saw something important or valuable in the gun, although what, we'll probably never know. This was back in the early to mid seventies, shortly before my great-grandfather passed. My grandfather passed away a few years ago, and now the gun is in my mother's possession. I am a novice when it comes to guns, but I've done some internet research on this particular model. The gun appears to be in good-to-great condition. The gun doesn't look blue, it looks 95%-98% black (but most pictures I've seen look black, so I don't know if that amounts to anything). There don't seem to be any loose springs; trigger action is very good, though I haven't actually tried it with a bullet. Several double clips are also with the gun; they all say ''45 Auto R P'' on the edge. I am assuming the butt was originally wooden; if so, it has been replaced by a brown plastic butt. The swivel ring is gone, and oddly, there is no serial number or marking of any kind on the bottom of the gun. It doesn't even look like there ever was a swivel ring or serial number that was once there - I know some civilians found swivel rings and serial numbers to be inconvenient for some reason and sanded or broke them off, but wouldn't there be a hole or some scratches or some accidental flaw on the butt that would attest to that? Also, the serial number concerns me. Obviously, 176119 is not an accurate number for an M1909 revolver. The black/blue finish underneath the visible serial number is completely gone, and there is a small, almost oval-shaped spot with only a silverish finish. If you look very closely, you can see that underneath the serial number is what looks to be another series of numbers, which someone (I think) tried to sand away, which would wear away the original finish, and stamp over the same spot with their own number. If this is true, it's quite possible that the gun was stolen, otherwise illegally acquired (after all it is US property), or used in a murder or illegal activity and that the person possessing the gun at that time didn't want it to be traced to him. My mother is worried that it is an imitation gun or that it might have some replacement parts, but the finish is too evenly worn and the overall craftsmanship is too good for me to believe that some of the parts are replacements. As far as the whole gun being an imitation, why would someone try to create an imitation gun back then? I could see if maybe we had only found the gun a few years ago. People know now how much old guns are worth and might try to do such a thing. But this gun has definitely been in existence since at least the early 70's and I don't see any advantage to making an imitation gun back then, especially in the south. People around mainly wanted guns for protection, and if they had an interest in a particular gun, it was only because they knew

Answer:
Jennifer- I have no doubt that your revolver is "authentic" meaning originally made as such circa 1909. The Model 1909 was a .45 caliber version of Colt's popular "New Service Model" double action revolver. It was adopted as a result of dissatisfaction with the "stopping power" of the .38 revolvers against the radical Islamaic "Moro" terrorists in the Philippines, which was temporarily solved by issuing old Single Action Army revolvers in .45 caliber. The Model 1909 had two numbers, Colt's serial number in the New Service series on the frame where the crane opens, and the Army serial number on the butt "U.S./Model/1909 [swivel] Ser. No./12345." It is not unusual to find the Army markings and swivel removed, but it is a bit late to determine the motivation for such defacing. I believe that the serial number on the frame in the crane opening was repeated on the crane, so that as the two parts rested against each other the tiny amount of raised metal around the edges of the numbers would create a sort of "mirror" image on the opposite part. It is important to remember that federal laws prohibit possession of guns made after 1898 with serial numbers removed. In your case, I think that as long as the manufacturer's number is visible you are okay. However, I am sure that lawyers could argue for hours (with the meters running at $250 per hour or more) about which number (if any) can be messed up without getting in trouble. We are not lawyers and cannot give legal advise, so if anyone is worried about this, seek competent legal counsel. John Spangler


# 10953 - Acme Arms Stagecoach Shotgun
4/9/2005
Jason

Acme Arms - Stagecoach Shotgun -

I am trying to find some info on a stagecoach shotgun. It's made by the Acme Arms Co. The gun is a 12ga. double barrel with rabbit ears and both ears are still perfect. The gun has scroll markings all over the metal of the gun. Also on the side of the gun has Belgium inscribed into it. The barrel is a Belgium Fine Damascus 21" long and overall length of the gun is 38 inches. I cannot find anything on this shotgun and wondering if you could tell me anything at all. I was told by the original family that owned the gun that it was around pre 1899, but I really don't know for sure. If you could tell me anything about this I would appreciate this a bunch. Thanks for you time and info.

Answer:
Jason- I remember that Wylie E. Coyote got his guns from Acme, but that may be a different company. Acme Arms Company was registered as a trademark April 23, 1894 in Belgium by Louis Muller, agent for H & D Folsom. Apparently Folsom imported Belgian guns with this name into the US until 1914. Folsom was a distributor/maker of mostly inexpensive shotguns sold under a wide variety of names. Chances are that your gun was made closer to 1914 than 1894 .

I have yet to see a single shotgun that can be convincingly proven to be associated with any stagecoach, anywhere. There probably are some, but the vast majority of "stagecoach guns" being sold to gullible collectors are otherwise junky old shotguns that are nearly impossible to sell. However, a quick barrel chop, some creative names and initials marked in the metal or stock, and a good story has turned many a $25 junker into a $500 collector prize. P.T. Barnum was right. John Spangler


# 10952 - Benjamin Model F Air Rifle
4/9/2005
John

Benjamin - F -

I was at you web site ( very nice !!) looking for any info on a air rifle I acquired.. Its a Benjamin Air Rifle Mfg. Co. "Model F ". The only other writing on it is the patents which run from June 5, 1906 to July 17, 1917. I've been searching the web for a few days and have come up with little to nothing on the gun. I would be grateful on any info, or direction you could supply!

Answer:
John- Sorry, we cannot help much with that one. W.H.B. Smith's "Gas, Spring & Air Guns" mentions the Model F but has very little info other than a description of how to operate it. It provides a mechanical drawing, and notes that the Model G was a great improvement over the Model F, but no other useful info. Benjamin started making air guns about 1882, and the "early" types all used a similar pump mechanism to that used on your Model F.

Based on your gun having a 1917 patent date we know it was made no earlier than that. My GUESS is that the Model G was probably introduced sometime prior to WW2, maybe 1930 or so. From various comments in the book it appears that Benjamin was not very cooperative about providing historical information, which may explain the lack of info. Hope this helps. John Spangler


# 10633 - S&W Military And Police Model 1905 4th Change
4/9/2005
Frank Tallahassee

Smith &˙Wesson - 38 - 6" - Blue -

This pistol belongs to a friend of mine, been in his family for decades. ˙VG condition. ˙I'd like to know what it is, what it was designed for (military &˙police, I suspect) and if it's worth anything. ˙˙Thanks

Answer:
Frank, the pistol is a Smith And Wesson Military And Police Model 1905 4th Change. Serial number range for 4th Change revolvers is 241704 to 1000000 with 758,296 manufactured circa 1915-1942. Changes from earlier models are primarily internal.

The Military And Police Model was the quintessential police revolver of the 20th century and the workhorse of S&W production for many decades. The model was a double action six-shot revolver with fluted cylinder and case color hardened hammer and trigger. Barrels were round and pinned at the frame, available in 4, 5, 6 or 6.5 inches. Factory finish was blue or nickel. Factory grips were checkered hard rubber with S& W monograms or plain walnut. Target versions have a square cut round blade front sight on a raised boss with adjustable rear sight.

These revolvers were designed around Smith And Wesson's the K frame. The basic design has been continuously improved over nearly a century, and in its current iterations (including S&W Models 10, 15, 19, 65 66 and others) it is still considered by many experts to be the finest personal defense or police handgun available.

Barrel markings observed are for this model are "S&W" on the left and "38 Special CTG" on the right side. Some are found with both markings on the left side with right side blank. Some revolvers have been observed without any frame markings except for serial numbers, including the S&W trademark which is normally on the sideplate. Otherwise frames are marked "Made in U. S. A." on the right side.

The following are values for this model.

NIB - $400 Exc - $250 VG - $175 Good - $140 Fair - $115 Poor - $70 Marc.


# 10632 - Frankenstein .45
4/5/2005
Columbia, SC

Essex/Remington - 1911 - 45 - Don't Know - 37744 -

We own a Colt 1911, with colt diamond cut grips, on the left side of the slide Remington Rand, Inc is stamped. On the right side is Essex Arms Corp with the # 37744. Would like to know the year this gun was manufactured and if Essex made the stock and Remington the slide. Thanks

Answer:
Technically your 1911 is not a "Colt", it is an Essex. Essex made the frame (not the stock) and Remington Rand made the slide. Collectors call what you have a "parts" or "Frankenstein" gun because it is composed or parts and pieces of other guns. Essex Arms of Island Pond, VT manufactures good quality aftermarket replacement parts, including frames and slides for the Colt 1911/A1 type pistols. The best that I can tell you about the year of manufacture is that your slide was made sometime during WWII, and that Essex has been manufacturing 1911A1 frames since 1970. Values for 1911/A1 Frankenstein guns are in the $200 - $350 Range. Marc


# 10617 - Astra 600 Ident.
4/5/2005
Ralph Houston Texas

Astra - 600/43 - 9mm - ? - Blue - 18258 -

Spanish proof marks also an O with a + over it on frame, perfect condition History of it, how old is it, was it used in WWII, worth anything? Thank You

Answer:
Ralph, During WWII the German Heereswaffenamt asked Astra to develop a pistol built around the 9MM parabellum round that was smaller than the model 400. Fifty prototypes were assembled in 1943 as test pieces. The prototypes were approved by the Heereswaffenamt and Astra commenced manufacture their new model 600.

Between May 16 and July 16 of 1944, a total of 10,450 Model 600 pistols were sent to the town of Irun on the French border for use by German troops that were then occupying France. The serial number range of these pistols was 51-10500. A short time later an additional 28,000 pistols were delivered to the border, but could not be accepted by the Germans because they were evacuating the area as a result of the Allied invasion of Normandy. The serial number range of pistols that could not be delivered was 10501-38500. These pistols were returned to Spain where they were used by the Spanish Government. Model 600 production was terminated in 1945 with pistol # 59546. Serail numbers 38501 to 59546 were placed in stock by the factory and eventually sold to the West German Government. Your pistol, serial number 18258 was in the batch that could not be delivered to the Germans in 1944. Marc


# 10951 - Colt Model Serial Number
4/5/2005
Alex

Colt - 1911 -

I checked the serial number of a M1911 Colt (#7076) and got a hit that it had been turned in to the Chicago PD in 1937. But this pistol was in my grandfather's possession from 1913 (when he snitched it from USS Arkansas, where he was a gun pointer) until 1975, when he gave it to me. I know that he had it, in Litchfield CT and later in Washington DC, because it was registered in those places during the years in question. He even carried it as his service pistol when he flew in France in WWI in the US Army Signal Corps Air Service. What would be the source of the finding? Thank you.

Answer:
However, I suspect that the Chicago cops may have accurately reported a military owned Colt made M1911 with serial number 7076 as being turned in. The probably did not know or care that there is a difference between Colt military contract M1911 serial number 7076, and a Remington UMC military contract M1911 serial number 7076 which may have acquired a Colt slide in the previous 20 years, or a Colt Commercial sale M1911 serial number C7076. Since you know where your pistol has been, it most likely was one of the other two. Congratulations on owning a nice family heirloom. We are glad to see it is appreciated. I would encourage you to request copies of his service records from the National Archives if you do not already have them. They are easy for family members to get, but not the general public.

[Note- This person later confirmed that his larcenous lineage had also pilfered a musket from the Revolutionary War and a Colt revolver from service in the Civil War. Priceless family heirlooms that now have a good home where they are properly appreciated for the role they played in winning and preserving our freedom.] John Spangler


# 10950 - Universal M1 Carbine
4/2/2005
Pat in Florida

Universal - M1 Carbine -

I picked up a Universal M1 Carbine. The slide assembly is broken where it engages the bolt lug. Of course I would much rather have an original but I picked it up for just about nothing and would like to get it in a shootable condition. It has the 2 spring recoil system and the slide appears to be a "stamped" version and definitely not of the quality the originals were. Would you happen to have a slide for this carbine? The barrel is flat sided on top towards the receiver end. Also, if the slide is unavailable is it possible to re-barrel and convert it to use G.I. parts? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Answer:
Pat- I have seen a number of Universals with similar problems. Try Gun Parts Corp on our links page for parts. Unless the receiver is drilled for the GI style single recoil spring, there is no way to make it work with GI parts, and the cost of the parts would probably exceed the value of the completed gun. If it were mine, I would sell it for "just about nothing" and spend a little more for a good one, just like the previous owner did..... John Spangler


# 10949 - Trench Gun Restoration Tips
4/2/2005
Van

Stevens - 520-30 Trench Gun -

I recently got a Stevens model 520-30 trench gun for $250 at a gun show. It is in good shape except for missing the heat shield/bayonet adapter. I could not locate a used one so I ordered a new production s type from Jack Swartz (East Taylor, LLC) out of Georgia...http://www.partsforantiqueguns.com/Stevens_Trench.html. The product came in white steel and I am trying to figure out how I am going to try to match the color to the gun. The gun is about 50% or more brown. Someone suggested treating the adapter with plumb brown. I am keeping the gun for my collection and have no intentions of selling it as an all original piece, but I would like to try to get the adapter to match the best I can just for looks. What do you think the best method would be?

Answer:
Van- I think I would use a "rust blue" process on the handguard and lug. It will give a nice blue, but sort of lusterless. Using regular cold blue will result in a splotchy and shiny appearance. You may want to consider doing the whole gun with the rust blue process to make it match the handguard assembly, if you don't think that refinishing will hurt the collector value.

Trying to duplicate blue turned brown may be a good trick. After rust bluing the guard assy, maybe scuff the high wear areas a bit with 00 steel wool, then thoroughly degrease it. Dip in a salty water solution for a day or so (check frequently) and let a little rust form, then wipe it off with 0000 steel wool. Repeat a few times if needed then rinse thoroughly with boiling water to remove all traces of salt. Using Plum brown type chemicals will give a brown color, but without a darker blue base underneath I don't think it would look right at all. John Spangler


# 10613 - P.38 Magazine With A "V"
4/2/2005
Ken, Jacksonville, Florida

Walther - P.38 - 9mm Luger - 4'' - Blue - 3631K -

P.38 ac42 Major components stamped with serial #, eagle over swastika, and eagle over 359 Eagle over 359 twice on right side of slide Firing pin and cartridge indicator stamped with eagle over 359 Locking block marked with an additional 1 and an 8 1st magazine typical - P.38, eagle over 359 2nd magazine - P.38v, ac, eagle over 359 upside-down Is this pistol a rare piece and are its markings common? There are no other marks on this pistol and it appears to have its original finish. Will all original holsters have German markings? It also has a very nice incomplete (missing top flap) brown holster that is old but I believe not original, as there are no markings on it. What was the 'v' for on the magazine?

Answer:

Ken, your P.38 was manufactured by Walther in 1942. The "ac" marking is a WW-II German ordnance code assigned to Carl Walther of Zella-Mehlis Germany and 42 is the year of manufacture. The following markings are common for "ac" variation P.38 pistols:

  • Serial number on the slide just forward of the safety lever, on the frame above the trigger, and on the front of the barrel group below the round section of the barrel. The last three digits on the base of the barrel locking block.
  • P.38 (serial #) ac (year of manufacture) or P.38 ac (serial #) (year) on the left side of the slide.
  • Military acceptance (stamp eagle over 359) stamped twice on the right side of the slide, once on the left side of the frame above the trigger, on the left side of the barrel group, on the right side of the barrel locking block, and on the upper rear of the magazine.
  • Military test proof (eagle over a swastika) on the right side of the slide between the two stampings on the military acceptance stamp, on the left side of the barrel group, and on the left side of the barrel locking block.

Military issue P.38 holsters are the most valuable and they will have military markings. Since your holster is missing the flap, there will not be much collector interest in it.

Sorry but I can't help with the "v" marking on your magazine, I doubt that it has much significance. Marc


Return to Collectors Headquarters.