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# 14156 - Radom 35 YIS?
5/31/2011
Mark , Kingman, Az

FB Radom - 35 YIS - 9mm - 4.75'' - Blue - R0276 -

Swastika on rear of slide on left side Year made and its value.

Answer:
Mark, the slide should read "F. B. RADOM VIS Mod. 35 Pat. Nr. 15567 P.35(p)" not "YIS"

The Polish military adopted the VIS MOD. 35 (Radom) pistol in 1935 as their standard military sidearm. On September 1, 1939, Radom production was taken over by the invading Germans. When the takeover occurred, all Polish markings on Mod. 35 pistols were discontinued and a German numbering system was instituted. All Radom pistols manufactured after September of 1939 have German markings.

Collectors have categorized Mod. 35 pistols into 3 different types and several sub types. To avoid confusion I will try to stick to the three main types for this answer. Type I pistols were manufactured in the first part of the war, Type II towards the middle and Type III at the end.

For type I pistols, all parts except the recoil spring and recoil spring guide are blued with high quality commercial type blue finish. Barrel, recoil spring, and recoil spring guide are polished white. Grips are checkered hard rubber. A shoulder stock slot and a lanyard ring may or may not be present.

Type II pistols have all parts except the barrel, recoil spring, and recoil spring guide blued over an improperly polished surface. Barrel, recoil spring, and recoil spring guide are polished white. Grips are checkered black plastic, checkered brown plastic, fine checkered hardwood, or coarse checkered hardwood. Lanyard ring and disassembly lever are present, shoulder stock slot omitted.

The frame, slide, and magazine of type III pistols are Parkerized. Rear sight, hammer, hammer release, magazine release catch, slide stop, and grip screws are blued over a roughly or poorly polished surface. Barrel, recoil spring, and recoil spring guide are polished white. Lanyard ring is present, shoulder stock slot and disassembly lever are absent. Grips are checkered black plastic, checkered brown plastic, fine checkered hardwood, coarse checkered hardwood, or grooved hardwood.

You did not give me much information to base a value on. Judging by the serail number I would guess that your Radom is a late Type II (serial range E8000 to Z2000). Values for Type II Radom pistols can range from $150 to around $650 depending on condition. Marc


# 14072 - Model 1842 Springfield Value
5/31/2011
Springfield

1842 - 69 - 42'' - Other - NONE -

Usual inspectors marks, V, P etc, U.S. on butt plate and lock plate What is the approximate retail value of such a gun in what Flayderman calls good condition?

Answer:
This sounds like a question from someone who really needs to break down and buy a $35 book before they get another $$$$ gun. Flayderman’s Guide to Antique American Firearms and their Values is an absolutely ESSENTIAL reference book for any gun collector. The value information is pretty realistic and covers virtually all American arms made before about 1950. However, the detailed information on markings, production dates, model variations etc is unbelievably useful. Useful both for information to help identify things and also for historical value, and for helping figure out what types of guns you might want to add to your collection.

He places a Model 1842 Springfield .69 caliber musket at about $950, but a rifled one at $2,200, and provides production numbers and dates made at both Springfield and Harpers Ferry. John Spangler


# 14070 - Winchester 1894 Rifle Sight Options
5/28/2011
Jim, Idaho City, Idaho

Winchester - 1894 - 30/30 - 25'' - Blue - 387902 -

This rifle has octogon barrel with a Marbles rear sight. I guess you would call it a ''buck horn'' style. Not sure. My question is, could this be an original factory sight, or did Winchester always put their ''own sights on from the factory. If it is not an original sight, would it be advisable to try and locate one and change it out. I know nothing about Marbles sights. Thanks...Jim

Answer:
Jim- I am like you- I know nothing about Marbles sights. I am pretty sure that Winchester stuck to their own sights, especially in the early years of the Model 1894. However, they would do just about anything on a “special order” basis, so I am not willing to state that it is impossible to be correct. You will have to find someone who knows more about Winchesters than I do to get an accurate answer.

However, unless this is a pristine example, I don’t think that a changed sight is that big a deal, and I would probably leave it as is. John Spangler


# 14155 - Agier Fondu or Acier Fondu?
5/28/2011
Argentina

British Constabulary - Agier Fondu on top - 9 Mm - 1,1 Inch - Nickel -

Made in Belgium (has the star and the letters LG in the barrel), with 5 shots barrel, octagonal pipe, ivory handle. Has a lot of engravings from factory. I would like to know history and potential price.

Answer:
I was not able to find any information on Agier Fondu firearms, but a quick Google search turned up several results for Acier Fondu. The Acier Fondu handguns that I found are Lefaucheux pinfire revolvers that were manufactured in Liège in the 1860s or 1870s. Prices for the examples that are being offered for sale are generally in the $300 to $600 range, but my experience has been that Pinfire revolvers are always slow sellers. For more information, and some interesting pictures, try this link : Belgian Guns and go to the Pinfire Revolvers section. Marc


# 14152 - Winchester Model 1886
5/24/2011
Ken

Winchester - 1886 - 50-110 - 28 Inches - Molted Blue And Gray - 81XXX -

An extra sight attached to the stock that elevates. What year was this rifle made, does it have any collector value?

Answer:
Ken,, The Winchester Model 1886 was John Browning's first high power lever action rifle design, it had a 26 in. round or octagon barrel, tubular magazine, steel forend cap, and a straight walnut stock. The 1886 was offered in .33 WCF, .30-56 WCF, .38-70 WCF, .40-65 WCF, .40-70 WCF, .40-82 WCF, .45-70, .45-90, .50-110 Express, and .50-100-450. The 1886 is distinguishable by the vertical locking bars that it employs. Winchester manufactured approximately 159,990, model 1886 rifles between 1886 and 1935. Our Winchester Dates of Manufacture page will tell you that your model 1886 was manufactured in 1893. Things that are old and have "Winchester" stamped on them are just about always valuable. Values for Winchester 1886 rifles chambered in 50-110 can go as high as $6000 depending upon condition. Let us know if you want to sell it... Marc


# 14069 - Original Or Repro M1842 Springfield Made In 1851
5/24/2011
Darrel, Salem, OR

1851 Springfield - 1842 Springfield - .69 - Don`t Know -

How can you tell a real 1851 probably never fired rifle from a replica?

Answer:
Darrel- The originals are very easy to tell from the repros if you have ever compared them side by side, or even taken and original apart. If you have taken apart any of the Springfield made .58 caliber rifle muskets or the trapdoor .50-70 or.45-70 rifles that would be sufficient. You will notice the crisp machining and precise fit of all parts, the presence of a variety of inspector initials or numbers on most metal parts. On the wood, the straight grain American black walnut is fairly distinctive, and the edges are all crisp and precise. Metal parts are precisely inletted for a perfect fit. Metal parts have a polished finish that is with a fairly fine grit, probably 440 grit, while the repros tend to be overly polished to more of a mirror finish. There are subtle differences in the heat treatment on various original parts, with most lock internals and the trigger and nipple having a blue-black finish, while most repro parts are just steel gray or polished. Of course, if you don’t know your diamonds you better know your jeweler, just to be sure. John Spangler


# 14068 - Sharps Pepperbox Model Differences
5/21/2011
Randy Armsbury

Sharps - Pepperbox - Blue -

I understand models 1,2,3 and 4. But what do A,B,C,D and E stand for?

Answer:
Randy- The Sharps .22 caliber pepperboxes were very popular guns, with lots of them made 1859-1874. They were the Model 1, but Sharps also made Model 2, 3 and 4 in .30 or .32 rimfire caliber.

Collectors, always eager for an excuse to find some minute difference to justify buying another gun, have discovered small differences in the contours of the grips, or the back of the frame, and the barrel catch, etc and broken the Model 1 into the 1A, 1B, 1C, 1D, and 1E. The best way to tell one from another would be to get a copy of Flayderman’s Guide to Antique American Firearms and their Values which is an essential book for every gun collector. Another useful reference book is Frank Sellers’ “Sharps Firearms.” John Spangler


# 14142 - 1934 Beretta With Capture Papers
5/21/2011
Mark, Twinsburg, Ohio

Beretta - 1934- BREVET GARDONE V.T. 1942 - 9mm Corto - 3.5 Inches - Blue - F59833 -

Left side of frame just behind the side grips is a crown and the letters ''RE'' Left side of frame under the lanyard loop there is an ''X'' and ''2'' stamp Next to the lanyard loop is an ''OV'' stamp This pistol was brought back from Italy with the original leather strap holster, authenticating papers with matching serial numbers and government stamps. It appears to be in good condition with little pitting on the frame. The bore looks very clean. Can you tell me what the markings stand for and if I were to sell it with the holster and papers, what would be a reasonable amount to expect? Thank you.

Answer:
Mark, the model 1934 was Italy's service weapon in WWII, and over one million were manufactured between 1934-1980. Military Model 1934 pistols are usually fit with metal-backed grips. Military slides were marked P. Beretta Cal 9 Corto - Mo 1934 Brevet Gardone VT followed by the date of manufacture. The date of manufacture is usually given in two systems (except on late wartime production models) the Christian calendar - e.g. 1942 - followed by a Roman numeral denoting the year of the Fascist calendar which began in 1922. Thus, an inscription might read 1942 XX or 1937 XV.

WWII military weapons were marked on the left side of the frame just behind the top of the grip with the branch of the armed forces they were issued to:

  • RE (Regia Esercito) for the army
  • RA (Regia Aeronautica) for the air force
  • RM (Regia Marine) for the navy

Police weapons were marked PS (Publica Sicurezza) at the left rear of the frame. Model 1934-s were also sold commercially during WWII but only in relatively small numbers, since most of the production was taken by the Italian forces. Later production model 1934-s have an alphabetical prefix. Post war production models have serial numbers that start with C00001. Marc

The holster and especially the papers add allot of value to the pistol. A pistol like yours in good condition without the extras would sell in the $550 range. If your pistol is in at least 90% condition, I would expect it to sell in the $850 to $950 range. Marc


# 14067 - Lyman Super Target Spot
5/17/2011
Al, Chesapeake VA

Lyman - Super Target Spot - 20 X - Blue - 18312 -

I’m trying to determine the date of manufacture for a Lyman Super Target Spot 20X rifle scope. I understand they began making this magnification around 1942. Does anyone know of a listing of the actual dates of manufacture, by serial number? Mine is 18312. I’ve tried Parson’s Scope with no luck. Thanks, I enjoy your site.

Answer:
Al- I have never seen any date tables for the Lyman Super Targetspot scopes. Nick Stroebel’s Old Gunsights and Rifle Scopes indicates they were made circa 1937-1978. My gut feeling is that a serial number that high sounds like maybe late 1940s or early 1950s when those were very popular with shooters, especially small bore types. Parsons is probably the most knowledgeable scope outfit around, so if they don’t know, it may not be feasible to find the info anywhere. John Spangler


# 14141 - Zbrojovka Brojovka Praga Pistol
5/17/2011
Gina, Benton, Maine 04901

Zbrojovka Praga - Handgun - .32 - 6'' - Blue - 4354 -

P.R.139 on left side of barrel a very small symbol on left side of barrel with #11 and #20 Can you tell me anything about this handgun? What it is and where can I find out more about it?

Answer:
Gina, Zbrojovka Brojovka Praga (Prague Small Arms Company) was founded in Vrsovice in 1918 by A. Novotny. They offered two pistols, one was a copy of the Browning Model 1910 and the other was an original design but of odd appearance and poor quality.

My guess is that you have the Praga Model 1921 which was initially manufactured for military and police use. 5,000 Model 1921 pistols were ordered for Czech forces, these all had plain wooden grips and cursive `Zbrojovka Praga` on the slide. A commercial version of the Model 1921 was also marketed, commercial pistols had block-lettered slides and moulded plastic `Praga` grips. Some of the commercial pistols have longer barrels which protrude slightly from the front of the slide.

The Zbrojovka BROJOVKA Praga company was foreclosed by the National Bank in 1926. Marc


# 14064 - Bnz 41 Kar98k Mauser Rifle
5/14/2011
Rob Hudson N,H.

Bnz. - 41 - 8mm - 25'' - Blue - 565 -

WaA623 stamped on reciever, stock, magazine plate bolt etc Eagle with a 77 right side of sight mounting. The only #s are 565a and the stock has a capital letter H stamped below round metal insert below the sling cutout in the stock 565 stamped on the trigger side of the stock, 2 eagle WaA623 stampings below the H. The stock looks very nice but I think it is made out of wood layers? Has a hood on the front sight, and the little metal band strips have 565 stamped on them as well as the screws on the magazine box plate have 65 stamped on the heads. Butt plate is blued and has 565a stamped on it. I have a German rifle that was passed down from my grandfather. He brought this back from WWII. It is in very good condition including the bluing and all the numbers match including the firing pin. (I found this out after bringing it to a shooting range and someone disassembled it including the bolt, then offered $2000 cash on the spot for it) From internet searches I think it is a Mauser design and was made in WWII? The butt plate is a different design from the pictures I've seen and is just a flat piece of curved steel as opposed to a raised stamping like the pictures of WWII Mausers. Do you have any idea what the value of this thing is for homeowner insurance purposes, and do you have any additional info for a firearm like this? Thanks for any help, Rob

Answer:
Rob- Your rifle sounds like a really great example of an all matching Kar98k Mauser made by Steyr-Daimler-Puch AG, Steyr, Austria in 1941. As far as the value, it is hard to be sure without actually handling the tifle, but you have had an offer of $2,000 so that is a pretty good number for insurance purposes. Personally, it sounds a bit on the high side, but there may be some special features that drive the value up. Or, maybe they offer was from someone out of touch with reality who wants to pay more than anyone else. John Spangler


# 14139 - Hope Springs Eternal
5/14/2011
Sam, Michigan

Uberti , Win. Yellowboy - Mod. 66 Sporting Rifle - 44-40 - 24.25 Oct. - Blue - 25480 -

A safety just behind the trigger, that the lever has to be pulled up tight to shoot. navy arms co. ridgefield made in Italy. Uberti & Goardon Is this a modern replica or could it be a prototype of 1873.

Answer:
Sam, sorry to have to tell you that your rifle is not a prototype of 1873, it is a modern replica. Uberti was founded in 1959 by Aldo Uberti in Gardone Italy. They started by making replicas of Civil War-era cap-and-ball revolvers. Over the years, they branched out into the manufacture of replicas of classic lever-action rifles, cowboy six-shooters, and big game rifles. They have a reputation of making pretty good quality stuff and they claim that their products are ``exacting replicas down to the finest detail, but with modern machinery and materials, they’re actually better than the originals``.

It is easy to see how you could be fooled into thinking that something like that is an original but, unfortunately it is not. Marc


# 14138 - Restored Collector Guns
5/10/2011
Normand, canton, nc.

Mauser - C96 - 7.63 - 6'' - Blue - 250000914 -

I have purchased a completely restored ( to original factory ) shape a c96 early flat side, which I believe to be a 1901 - 902 model. Extremely well done. Does this increase the value, or does this take away from it. As you know, most fall into the 5900.00 range as is etc. Should I be staying away from restored guns in the future ? ( best guess ) On another note: If you look back at your answer to a man ( your no 4246 ), you corrected him in the thinking that he had misread the '' cvq'' stamp, and told him that it should read cyq. You were only partcially correct there. Late war Spreewerk pistols continued to be produced with the use of a broken stamp. The y extenstion broken off at the base, leaving the appearance of it being a vee instead of a q. That can be verified. Hope that that may help some future inquiry. Hope to have your best guess on the restored value issue. Thanks in advance, Norm.

Answer:
Norm, my rule of thumb with restorations is that they decrease the value by 50% or more depending on the quality of the restoration. I usually try to stay away from items that have been restored. We recently tried to sell a very well done Walther HP (Heeres Pistole) pre war commercial restoration on consignment. Even though the pistol is a beautiful restoration, we were not able to find a buyer. The owner finally gave up trying to sell after about a year and the pistol is still in his collection. Marc


# 14063 - French Mannlicher Berthier Rifle
5/10/2011
David

ST. Etienne - M LE M16 - 8m Or 8x50m? - 31 1/2'' - Blue - N 72600 -

On the trigger guard there is a N 72600, on the receiver there is a 3, on the firing pin there is a 78 and on the bolt handle there 6 213 with 2 unrecognizable markings before it. Manufacturing date, I found that the earlier rifles were marked with 3 number serials, I'm wondering if this is a possible early model with custom applied parts. some are 8mm and some are 8x50mm. thank you for the time

Answer:
David- I confess much ignorance about French firearms, and incredibly small interest in any of them. Most are ugly, very poorly cared for, saw little successful wartime use (surrendered quickly) and are just plain poorly designed weapons. And, I don’t much care for some of the French people either.

The only way to be sure of the caliber is to do a chamber cast and headspace check, but I would not attempt to fire any French rifle made between 1853 and 1935 anyway. Perhaps someone else can help ID this, but I really cannot help much. John Spangler


# 14062 - Serbian Model 24 B Mauser Rifle
5/7/2011
Pup ,

Mauser - 1924 B - ? - 24 - Blue - ? -

Serbian Crest on top of breach that matches m1900 luger , under the crest it has moaen 1924 b What have I got

Answer:
Pup- The FN made Model 1924 short rifles were very popular with sales to many countries, including what we once called Yugoslavia, previously known as Serbia, and in the 1920s as the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes. This hotbed of hostility to itself purchase some of the Model 1924 short rifles from FN, along with the machinery to make more which was installed at Kragujevac. Just before the atart of WW2, Yugoslavia decided to convert many of its old WW1 era long Muaser Gew 98 style rifles to the new Model 24 short rifle pattern. As part of the conversion process the receiver rings were marked Model 24 B (in Cyrillic letters). I think that collecting Yugoslavian firearms would be an interesting and not terribly expensive collecting specialty, or it could be narrowed down a bit by picking various start or end dates for collecting. John Sapngler


# 14136 - Rough S&W 38
5/7/2011
Brett New London , Ia.

Smith & Wesson - 38 Special - 5'' - Nickel - 66272 -

Patented 1877 What is general value in Rough Condition ?

Answer:
Brett, it is hard to say what the value of your revolver is without seeing it and especially without knowing what model it is. I recommend that you take it to a gunshow and show it to a few of the dealers there. They will be able to give you a better estimate of value than I can under theses circumstances. Marc


# 14137 - Revolver With Notches
5/3/2011
Frank, Austin, AR

Smith & Wesson - #2, 3, Or 4 (not Sure) - 38 - 3.25 - Nickel - 101452 -

U.S.A. PAT`D JAN.17&24.65 JULY 11.65 AUG 24.69 JULY 25.71 DEC 2.79MAY 11&25.1880. I`m pretty sure it`s a double action. This pistol actually has three notches in the handle, for real! My wife`s late husband owned this pistol which came down through his family. The history is that his relative, the original owner, had to leave town (about 30 miles from here) after shooting a man in the street with it late 1800`s. I took it out one day to clean it up and see if it had any value. I noticed the grips do not have S&W logo. In the embossed circle at the top of each grip where the S&W would be is a square target outline. Inside the square is a bull`s eye showing a five shot pattern. The five shot patterns are not identical on each side and they are not ''mirror images'' either. I haven`t found these on any website. I wondered if you think they are original or replacements and what effect that would have on the value. This gun has been well used or not cared for. But it really does have notches in the handle. I thought that was just a myth, what do you think?

Answer:
Frank, it is hard to say what the notches in the handle of your revolver signify, hopefully your wife's late husband did not have a serial killer in the family. The bull`s eye pattern that you describe on the grips is a logo that was used by H&R (Harrington & Richardson). My guess is that your revolver is a Harrington & Richardson not a Smith and Wesson. If the revolver has Smith and Wesson markings, they probably signify the caliber rather than the manufacturer. I would have to see the revolver to know for sure.

If your revolver is a Harrington & Richardson, value will be much lower than it would have been if it was a Smith and Wesson. If you can document any interesting historical information about previous famous (or infamous) owners, that will help value. Remember that historical information must be documented to add value. Word of mouth family histories with no documentation to back them up won`t help. Marc


# 14058 - Rock Island Model 1903 Rifle
5/3/2011
Dale , Port Richey, Fla.

US Rock Island Arsenal - 1903 - 30.06 - 24 In. - Other - 266217 -

On lower end of stock H 42 , stamped on stock AAJ , top of barrel RA 6-44 , on front sights r and us , numbers 0 to 27 on back sights, color looks like a light greenish barrel, trigger and receiver, has 1 in. round little door on back of stock. sights are removable Was this rifle put together from several guns, or was just put together that way . Grandfather gave rifle to my mother in 1950 and can not get a answer from anywhere about it. Thank You Mr. DeLisle

Answer:
Sir- Springfield Arsenal and Rock Island Armory both made Model 1903 “Springfield” rifles for the U.S. Army. These were tools for soldiers to use, and with the intention that any part could be replaced if needed. While collectors may prefer rifles that retain all of the parts which were installed when the rifle was first made, the Army was just as happy if all parts were in serviceable condition, even if they were replacement parts installed during an arsenal overhaul, or even at the unit level.

Your rifle was made sometime in 1918, shortly before the switch to the improved heat treatment, so it is considered to be a “low number” receiver which is considered to be marginally safe to shoot, or possibly downright unsafe. The Remington made barrel is dated 6-1944 so it is obvious the rifle was rebuilt sometime after June 1944. The AAJ indicates the stock was inspected at Augusta (Georgia) Arsenal, but there is no way to know for sure if this action was in this stock at that time. The trapdoor in the buttplate is standard, allowing access to a piece of cleaning equipment was stored in the butt stock, called the “oiler and thong case.”

If it was given to a family member in 1950 it is probably one sold off by the military either through the NRA or at local cash sales at some bases.

Although it has less collector interest and value than a totally original rifle, one like this with mixed vintage parts still has value as a representative example of a famous U.S. military service rifle. John Spangler


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