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# 6080 - Annie Oakely used 1892 Winchester smoothbore
6/28/03
Jim

Winchester - 1892 - 44 - 563xxx -

I have in my possession A smooth bore trick gun that was given to my Mother in 1914 by Annie Oakley. It is a Winchester 44 ser #563xxx, model 1892. I need documentation. So far, no luck. .Can you help? Thanks.

Answer:
Jim- That sounds like a great gun, especially if it can be authenticated. Having a smoothbore is an unusual feature, and one known to be popular with trick shot experts, and it was made in 1910, which would support a transfer in 1914. (If the gift was reputed to be before the date the gun was made, that raises big questions about the accuracy of everything else, but so far, so good.

The first step would be to see if you can get a "Factory letter" from the Winchester records at the Cody Firearms Museum (CFM). (See our links page for Buffalo Bill Historical Center (BBHC), where the CFM is located). That will cost something, but it would be helpful if it documents it as being a smoothbore, which is very unusual, and it may show some shipping information. The next step is to see if it can be documented to Annie Oakley in any way. If that is great, and the link to your mother becomes less significant. If ownership by Annie Oakley can NOT be proven, then we at least need to be able to show that there was an opportunity and motivation for a gift from Annie Oakley to your mother. Old newspaper accounts, something from a book on Annie, or documents in archives showing her schedule may have some tidbits that would be helpful. Fortunately, the folks at the BBHC also have a lot of Annie Oakley reference material, and while they cannot undertake any detailed research for you, they may be able to suggest some places to start. I believe there are also other museums connected to Annie Oakley, and they may be less busy and more inclined to help. If necessary, you could even hire a researcher to pursue the issue, if you have the funds and desire. Jim Supica, the guy who runs Old Town Station, author of the book on Smith & Wesons, and a NRA Director, has written a great article on evaluating arms with alleged histories. I believe it appeared in the Blue Book of Gun Values at one time, but it would be worth tracking down. We will try to get it posted on our resource site, http://ArmsCollectors.com so everyone can learn from it. John Spangler


# 6082 - Wooden Training Rifle Use By Military
6/28/03

Years ago a friend of ours gave my sons a wooden bolt action rifle that he claims was a military issue practice rifle. Do you know if there really is such a thing and if so when were they used.

Answer:
Janet- During WW2 the U. S. Navy used wooden rifles, with some metal parts to allow operation of the bolt, and attachment of the bayonet, to teach basic drill procedures in boot camp. These are marked on the steel buttplate "U. S. Navy Dummy Drill Rifle Mark I, Parris Dunn Corp. Clarinda, Iowa" Similar rifles were made for sale as kids' toys but without the Navy markings, and reduced size versions and are still being made, strictly as toys.


# 5557 - TEX Revolver
6/28/03
Steven Catoosa, OK

FIE - MOD TEX - 22 L.R. - 6 1/2 - Blue - TX08529 -

I'd just like to know a little more about the gun. My father bought it from a co-worker who was in need of money. Any info would be greatly appreciated. STEVEN

Answer:
Steven, FIE (Firearms Import and Export) started selling their Texas Ranger or "TEX" series of revolver in 1986. TEX revolvers were available chambered in 22 LR or as a 22 LR/22 Mag combination that came with an extra cylinder. Barrels were available in 3.25, 4.75, 6.5, 7, or 9 inches. Blue book values for these revolvers is in the $25 to $75 range depending on condition. Marc


# 5556 - Arminius Question
6/25/03
Ian Of California, USA

Liberty (Arminius?) - HW7 - Cal. 22.l.r. - 5'' - Other - 263XXX -

This inquiry is regarding a similar handgun described in Q&A #100 on 11/23/96 by a Bob walker. The gun I am describing is very similar to the one in Q&A #100 but there are a few dramatic differences. There is a ramp front sight, slot rear sight, brown plastic (or vinyl?) grips. Inscribed on this gun on the right side above the trigger on the frame are the words Made in Germany. The serial number 263xxx is engraved on the right side of the frame where the 5'' barrel connects and is held in place by a round pin that is right above the middle of the last two digits.(yes that's 5 inches and not 6'' like the model in Q&A #100 - 11/23/96 and if you are interested in knowing the full serial # you can e-mail me naipan23@yahoo.com to get it if it is really that important for you people to know) This gun was given to me as a family heirloom so the only way to get to it is to pry it from my cold, dead fingers! There are no markings on the right side of the barrel (as in the model in Q&A #100 11/23/96) - the markings are on the left side of the barrel and they read - ''Cal. 22.l.r.'' (not kal.22 Magnum like in Q&A #100 11/23/96) and right next to that is the same stamp of an Eagle like figure with an ''N'' below it.(Nazi warbird symbol perhaps? this Eagle symbol appears on the barrel, the cylinder and frame by the way) There are no other markings on the barrel. On the left side of the frame (in same placement as the serial # but on left side of frame) is the profile of figure with beard, long hair, and wings on the head.(same as in Q&A #100) The profile of the figure is on the frame only and appears nowhere else on the gun. (German Hero Huh? cool!). Right below the bearded figure are the engraved marks HW7 (in italic). The HW7 is on the arm thing that holds the pin and flips the cylinder out - this part is removable via a simple screw and has a different serial # [6 digits] that you can see on the inside when you flip the cylinder out). Right below that on the frame are 3 stamps. From left to right they are - the aforementioned Eagle like figure with an ''N'' at its feet - a shield with diamond patterned cross-hatching - and another shield with the number 68 inside (not 69 like in Q&A #100 11/23/96). The ass-kicker is the circular 1/2 inch metal and/or brass disk imbedded on the left side says ''Liberty'' not Arminius. (the gun in Q&A #100 11/23/96 had one that said ARMINIUS) Liberty was the only indication of a manufacturer on the gun and it took a lot of searching to get even this far. To this day I still have not been able to find any company or gun manufacturer that goes by that name. It was only by chance that I was able to make the connection to Arminius using other descriptions of the gun. This gun is in excellent condition and it looks like the Liberty stamp was definitely put there when the gun was made and has been there since. My questions are what is the story with this gun and why is it so hard to find information about it. I am starting to think that what I have must be rare. Like it says in the answer for Q&A #100 11/23/96, there are two companies that used the trade name Arminius. The gun in Q&A #100 11/23/96 was manufactured by the Herman Weihrauch company of West Germany according your sources. But since my gun is so markedly different (i.e. different barrel length, the spelling Cal instead of Kal on the barrel, 22.l.r as opposed to 22 Mag and the Liberty logo etc...) does this mean that mine was made by Friederich Pickert of ZellaMehlis, Germany? Or is there some other explanation? I would greatly appreciate any information you can provide for this particular item. (especially about the Liberty logo) Thank you.

Answer:
Ian, it appears that you really did your homework before submitting your question. I wish I could be helpful and provide some additional information, but I really do not have anything to add. First I must tell you not to build your hopes up too high, your revolver may be rare but that does not mean that it is valuable. There is no collector interest Arminius firearms and I believe that this is the reason that it is hard to find information on them, there are just very few people who are interested.

I do not think that this revolver is WWII or older vintage and it is not German military issue. The eagle over "N" proof mark that you describe is most likely a West German "definitive nitro proof for all guns" that was first used in 1952. The number 68 and 69 may indicate the date of manufacture, but that is just a guess, I was able to find a Liberty Arms Organization who were importers of sporting firearms arms in California. My guess is that your revolver was manufactured for a company like this to their specifications for the import into the U. S. hence the abbreviation of caliber in English and the differences in configuration.

I am glad that you want to keep your family heirloom. This could be the start of a collecting specialty in an area with a lot of low priced guns available, very little information, and the opportunity to end up as the expert everyone else will contact. Good luck, and sorry we could not help more. Marc


# 5551 - M1 Carbine Import
6/25/03
Tom, Clearfield, Utah

Quality Hardware & Machine Corp. - US .30 CAL CARBINE M1 - .30 Carbine - Standard military - Blue - 1915853 or 1913853 -

Receiver: QUALITY H.M.C. Barrel: ROCK-OLA, with bayonet log installed Barrel underneath: CAI-ST-A-VT Stock: Like new, looks like birch I would like to know if it is import, domestic rebuilt or any information you can furnish. Thank You very much.

Answer:
Tom, your carbine was lent or given to a foreign country sometime after 1945. It was re-imported after 1986 when new U.S. laws went into effect requiring all imports to be stamped. The CAI -ST Al- VT is an abbreviation for Century Arms International, St Albans, Vermont. Marc


# 5599 - Spanish Dueling Pistol
6/25/03
Heather, Big Rapids, MI

Spain - Spanish Dueling Pistol - 40-45 - 5''-7'' - Don't Know - NONE -

Where the Spain was stamped on the pistol it looks as though it has been stamped twice, but both stamps are Spain. It is definitely made of a foreign wood and looks like brass as the finish type not nickel. what year was this pistol made and what would the value of this pistol be?

Answer:
Heather- Items stamped with the country of origin were imported into the U.S. after 1898, so we can be sure it is not really very old. Most of the replica muzzle loaders have been made since about 1950, but the vast majority since about 1970. Value is very modest on most, and I have seen them selling for as little as $20-30. Hope this helps. John Spangler


# 6055 - Watertown Musket
6/21/03
James, Woodsfield, Ohio

Watertown - 1894 - .50+ - Approx. 40'' - Other -

I am in the possession of a musket which is marked Watertown 1894. There are no other marks on the piece. I believe the sear or that part of the trigger that locks the hammer back is broken or worn down so the hammer will not remain in the cocked position. Also there are at least two of the bands which hold the barrel and stock together missing. The rings which I do have are marked with the letter U. I'd like to get information on repair and possibly parts for this musket. I'd also like to know of it's possible value. Thank you in advance for your consideration.

Answer:
James- I assume that you meant to say it was marked WATERTOWN 1864. Therefore it would be one of the 12,800 Model 1861 Springfield .58 caliber rifle muskets made by Charles B. Hoard in Watertown, NY circa 1863-1865. These Civil War muskets have a lot of collector interest, especially in better condition levels. It sounds like yours is restorable, and parts are relatively easy to find. The failure to stay cocked could be caused by the sear spring not pushing the sear into engagement, or a broken tip on the end of the sear that engages the notch in the tumbler, or a broken notch in the tumbler. Sears, springs, and tumblers should be available from the good folks at S&S firearms on our links page. They should also have bands, although you may have to settle for reproduction bands. There should be three bands. Value can run anywhere from a few hundred dollars up to over $1,000 depending on condition and any repairs needed/done. John Spangler


# 6057 - Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR) Bolt & Ejection
6/21/03
Vincent

Browning - Automatic - Rifle (BAR) - The Original Military BAR - Blue -

Why is the Browning Automatic Rifle ( BAR ) made with a left-sided slide bolt with a right-sided ejection port?

Answer:
Vincent- John M. Browning was an absolute genius, and carefully thought through is ideas and inventions. His wisdom and judgement is validated by the high regard given some of his many designs which are either still in production, or highly regarded by shooters today: The 1885 "Highwall" single shot rifle, 1886, 1892 and 1894 Winchester lever action rifles; the 1897 Winchester pump action shotgun; the .50 caliber M2 machine gun; and the M1911 .45 automatic pistol in all its clones and variations. All invented by one guy, and still hugely popular even though the inventor died in 1926.

Okay, the ejection port is on the right side, because most people are right handed, and flinging hot brass away to the right gets it out of the way. Ejecting to the left would be annoying when hot brass bounce off the shooter's forehead or disappear into their collar. (We had an unfortunate accident at a local gun range recently where a young lady being taught to shoot by her boyfriend when she caught a piece of hot brass down her blouse. Temporarily ignoring the safe gun handling rules she had been briefed on, she squirmed around and in the process pulled the trigger when her pistol was un-safely pointed at her boyfriend's leg. He was not seriously injured. I wonder if they will sue the pistol maker, ammo maker, shooting range, or Wonderbra?) The "bolt" is actually the "Operating Handle". Unlike a bolt operated rifle, the BAR only requires the Operating handle to be cycled once when initially loading the rifle, or in the case of a malfunction. This leaves the right hand free to operate the trigger, or to change magazines. Sounds like a good design to me. John Spangler


# 6047 - Pieper 25
6/21/03
John, Bremerton, WA

Pieper - Unsure, 1930 Maybe - .25 - 2'' - Blue - 54XX -

''-Ancien Etablissements Pieper Herstal-Belgium-'' Has full length grip safety & magazine safety Trigger safety doubles as slide hold open latch and rotates an additional 40 deg or so rearward when the grips are removed How on earth do you remove the slide? I've read your previous answers on .25s and pushed, pulled, lifted and rotated everything I can think of, singly and in combination. I've even pushed out all the pins and removed the trigger, safeties, extractor, etc. There is a very interesting part dovetailed into the rear of the frame with a round head which engages the slide. It appears to be a tight press fit that should move upwards with suitable persuasion, but I am reluctant to try it without firm knowledge of its true function. Also, is this truly a Model 1930?

Answer:
John, I am not sure if Pieper ever made a model 1930, I could not find any mention of that model in any of my reference or gun value books. I think that it is likely that you have a model 1909 because the 1909 was chambered in .25 ACP and because of the way in which the 1909 is dissembled. The 1909 is said to have been a well-constructed pistol, which incorporated an unusual takedown feature. Pushing down the barrel and slide lock on the left side of the receiver above the trigger guard permits the barrel and slide assemblies to be lifted up out of engagement and removed without effort. I hope this helps, if this is not the information that you are looking for, try posting a question on the forum at our other site, ArmsCollector.com. Good luck Marc


# 5541 - Brit. 303
6/18/03
Randy Cincinnati Ohio

British Army - Don't Know - .303 - Don't Know - Other - don't know -

My question is, how much would a 1942 British .303 be worth today?

Answer:
Randy, you have not given us enough information for us to be able to provide you with much of an answer. To a U. S. collector, a 1942 rifle made at the Lithgow arsenal in Australia, Long Branch arsenal in Canada or by Savage Arms Company will be worth more than one made in England. If this rifle is a 1942 made for sniping with all the correct equipment it could be worth $1500, less desirable variations or a rifle that has been sporterized may sell for as little as $50. Marc


# 5527 - Tired Colt M1917
6/18/03
Jeff, Rapid River, Michigan

Colt - 1917 - .45 DA - Blue - 254728 -

Bottom of grip has U.S. Army Model 1917 them No.102656 I recently came to own this gun and would like to know a little more about it. The gun isn't in very good shape, it needs to be reblued, should I try to do it myself or would it be worth it to have it sent out and done professionally? Also it has plastic grips that are cracked and look cheap, are these original? Should I replace them with new ones? Also is there any where I can find the value and maybe the history of the gun? I went to colt on-line but it would cost $100.00 for them to send me any information on the gun and I don't want to spend that much for them to tell me that it was issued to the U.S. Army and nothing else. Thank you for reading my question and would really appreciate any help that you can give me.

Answer:
Jeff, these pistols were procured by the U. S. military because enough Model 1911's could not be manufactured to fill the growing demand created by World War I. Colt took their successful New Service revolver and chambered it for the 45 ACP cartridge, the military called it the Model 1917. The pistol left the factory with plain wood grips, and a lanyard loop on the bottom of the butt. Finish should show crude showing machining marks on the sides and the barrel. We strongly recommend against refinishing any military weapon. I checked your pistol's serial number against the Springfield Research Service's data base for you, to see if I could find a little history but did not come up with any information. Marc


# 5626 - French St. Etienne Bayonet Use
6/18/03

St. Etienne - Bayonet 1872 - Don't Know - 2753 ON SCABBARD AND HANDGUARD -

St Etienne M O A I 1872 Were these bayonets ever used by the U.S. Military, if so who, what, when and where..? Thank you so much!!!

Answer:
These were made circa 1866-1874 and then the M1874 Gras rifle and bayonet were adopted. Both models are marked with script engraving on the top of the blade showing the place made, and the date. The M1866 had an all brass handle, while the M1874 had wood grips and a brass pommel. Neither of these models were ever used by U.S. forces, as far as I know. John Spangler


# 6023 - Quattlebaum Rifle
6/14/03
Mike

Quattlebaum - Blue -

I am trying to obtain information on a muzzle loader rifle manufactured by ''Quattlebaum'' -it may have been confederate or pre-civil war. Any help is appreciated. NRA Lifer

Answer:
Mike- Always glad to help out NRA guys and gals. However, in this case I cannot find ANYTHING that is even close. Markings on muzzle loaders are often engraved script which can be very hard to read, so I guess that it probably is another name cleverly camouflaged as Quattlebaum. John Spangler


# 5534 - Re-Blue My 1922?
6/14/03
Bill, Jefferson, NJ

FN Browning - 1922 - 7.65 - Blue - 121931 -

Nazi proof marks WaA140. Matching serial numbers on all parts. Although in very good shape, most bluing is gone. Would it be ok to reblue? Also, there seems to be quit a bit of play between the slide and frame, is this normal?

Answer:
Bill, your statements that your pistol is in very good shape but most of the bluing is gone and that there is quite a bit of play between the slide and frame sound a little contradictory to me. You must be one of those people who sees the glass as half full. I would advise you to have a competent gunsmith check the pistol to determine if slide/frame play is a problem or not. From your description, I do not think that it would hurt anything to have the pistol re-blued but in my opinion it would be a waste of time and money. Marc


# 6024 - Mauser With Arabic Markings
6/14/03
Bill, Hiram, Ohio

Mauser - 89 - Unsure - Rifle - Blue - 3214 -

Arabic writing on the receiver, the only English markings are the four digit number stamped on the stock, barrel, and bolt. Also has a crescent moon stamped on certain parts...... I just got this rifle from my father, (he brought it back with him from WWII). From looking on the internet it looks to be a Mauser model 89 or a later model Turkish Mauser. It does not have any newer stampings like the updated cartridge Turkish Mausers. What caliber could this gun be and is ammo still available?

Answer:
Bill- With the crescent (half moon) symbol being there, it is very likely this is a Turkish rifle. The Turkish forces used nearly every possible model of Mauser rifles. The Model 1889 being made for Belgium was an improvement over the 1887 model then being made for Turkey, so they took advantage of a clause in their contract which allowed them to substitute any improved models if they desired. Thus they ended up getting what collectors call the Model 1890 Turkish rifle. (Clever, those rug merchants!) These were MADE in 7.65mm Mauser caliber (same as the 1889 Belgian and 1891 Argentine versions) but we cannot be sure what caliber it may be now. The Turks were very aggressive about fiddling with their weapons, and their culture apparently places low value on human life, so safety for use was not a real high priority, as long as they worked most of the time. Thus you will find all sorts of strange permutations and improvisations or rifles and bayonets, usually poorly cared for, and now offered by surplus dealers at bargain prices. This could be a collecting field with much variety for someone with a low budget (some would say low taste as well). Personally, I would NEVER shoot ANY of the Turkish rifles, but others may be less attached to all their body parts. Anyone wanting to know more about Turkish (or any other nationality) Mauser rifles, should invest in Robert Ball's Mauser Military Rifles of the World. (Check our book page http://OldGuns.net/catbook.htm). John Spangler


# 5905 - New Model Melior
6/11/03
Tom, Royse City, Tex.

Melior - .25 Cal. - 2 Inches - Blue - 9144 -

Brevels-259178-265491 Liege-Belgium Sur 86 v pv When was it made, how many are out there,& value. What model is it.

Answer:
Tom, you probably have what is known as a New Model Melior, these were manufactured in Liege Belgium. The New Model was introduced in 1920, in general appearance and design it resembled the Browning 1910 but unlike the Browning, the breech block as a separate unit which was inserted into the slide from the rear and held there by a dovetailed locking plate which was locked in place by a spring catch. The slide was removed forwards over the barrel by releasing the catch and driving the plate out. Early pistols had a full length grip safety, which was shortened to half length at about serial number 100,000 and completely removed after about serial number110,000. New Model pistols were usually marked 'Melior Brevets - 259178 - 265491 - Liege - Belgium' with a round embossed motif on the grips showing the words 'Melior Liege' surrounding a monogram of 'RCo'. Melior pistols were well made and sold steadily all over the world into the 1950s. As with most .25 caliber pistols, there is not much collector interest in Meliors. I would expect to see a pistol like yours sell at a gunshow in the $100 range. Marc


# 5891 - Terrible Pistol
6/11/03
Jim Heinrich, Littleton, CO, US

Unknown - ''Terrible'' - 6.35 - 2'' - Blue - Unknown -

Pistol Grips have a diamond with the letters ''C.H.'' and ''Terrible'' stamped on them. Also the year ''1919''. Stamped on the safety side of the loading mechanism is: Automatic Pistol ''Terrible'' Patent for the 6.35 Cartridge 1920 What do I have my hands on here and where did this gun originate? In my research, there was a French pistol manufacturer who made a gun labeled ''Le Terrible''. Any connection?

Answer:
Jim, sorry to have to tell you that you do not have your hands on a treasure, "Terrible" is probably an apt name for this pistol. The Terrible is, in fact, a Campeon sold under a new (Terrible) name.

Campeon pistols were blowback 'Eibar' designs, marked 'Automatic Pistol Campeon Patent for the 6.35 Cartridge 1919' on the slide. The grips were embossed "Campeon" with the initials "CH" in a diamond, at the lower rear of the butt, above the word "Campeon", the monogram of the same letters 'CH' which refereed to Crucelegui Hermanos, another Eibar concern, that sold the Campeon under their own name.

There is no collector interest in Terrible pistols, I would expect to see one for sale at a gunshow in the $50.00 or less range. Marc


# 5592 - Springfield Trapdoor 71st NY
6/11/03

Springfield - Trapdoor - 528990 -

I recently bought a 1891 Springfield trapdoor rifle . the serial no. is 528990 on the left side of stock is stamped in a large number 71 under the 71 is also marked 278. I recently read one of your questions # 783 Springfield model 1888 ramrod bayonet rifle, you mentioned a serial no. 537xxx being issued to the New York volunteers . I did some research and found out that there 's a 71 St. New York volunteers is this one of the rifles issued to the 71st. How can I get more information on this gun . The Springfield research service did not list it. Thanks for your help.

Answer:
Without documentation there is no way to be sure that your rifle was used by the 71st NY. There is no way to document it if SRS does not have it in their database. Records probably got trashed 100 years ago, or are hiding away where they may never be found.

NY is one of the few states that had regimental numbers that got up into the 60s and 70s for the Spanish American War, and it is known that the 71st did have trapdoors, not Krags. Therefore I suspect it is probably from the 71st NY Volunteer Infantry, however that is not proof.

Just in case it is, you need to go out and find a copy of "The Little War of Private Post" by Charles Johnson Post. He was an artist who did a lot of nice paintings to illustrate his well written account of his experiences as a member of the 71st NY. It is one of the top 3 or 4 enlisted accounts of military life in my opinion. I am sure you will enjoy it. I have seen it both in hardbound and in paperback, but believe it has been out of print for at least 20 years. John Spangler


# 6002 - M1903 Rock Island With Springfield Serial Number
6/7/03
Rich Flagstaff, Arizona

Rock Island - 1903A1 - 30.06 - Stock - Parkerized - 1297019 -

barrel marked: SA 10-42 I saw a R.I 1903A1 in your ads. Your ad states that this was a Rock Island receiver sent to Springfield Armory after R.I. ceased production of this model. The serial number is a R.I. serial number (1-445,000). These receivers were sent unserialized from R.I. to S.A.. I have a R.I. receiver with a S.A. serial number. S.A. says this gun was delivered on 12/1/36, to Wash. D.C. high school(ROTC?). This gun was built from one of those 2000+ unserialized and non heat treated receivers sent to S.A.. Were some serialized receivers below 445,000 sent to S.A.? If so, what documentation have you found? I'm very interested in this rare gun's history. Please forward any info you have. Thanks -rich

Answer:
Rich- First, we have to be accurate. Either you have a typo in your serial number or you have access to more information than anyone else knows about. 1297019 is NOT listed in the Springfield Research Service database, although the number before and after are both listed as being with Washington, DC high schools as of December 1, 1936, for some sort of ROTC type program. (Nowdays the students bring their own guns to schools there, illegally, despite a near total ban on private ownership of guns in the District. of Columbia.) Note that this data is from SRS, not Springfield Armory, who really have no data they have shared with the public beyond some date of manufacture and production total type info. It is absolutely wrong to extrapolate from nearby numbers as proof that the missing numbers saw the same usage. While it is POSSIBLE, it is just as possible that the missing number belonged to a rifle with a different military branch a million miles away, and even the available SRS data rarely documents more than one or two specific events in a lengthy service history, or a sale. Based on this we really do not know much about your rifle beyond the markings on the receiver.

However, it is well documented that Rock Island ceased manufacture of complete rifles near the end of WW1 in favor of making only spare parts. Shortly after production of parts ceased, the thrifty Ordnance Department ordered the spare parts on hand, unused raw materials and partially completed parts to be sent to Springfield to be used in production there. Rock Island's rifle machinery was disassembled and placed in storage, and in 1941 it was transferred to Remington's Ilion, NY plant and placed back in operation. Among the material and unfinished parts sent to Springfield were a quantity of receivers, some in early stages of manufacture, but some fully machined and marked with ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, but not yet serial numbered, and others as fully completed spares. The spare receivers were of the "high number" type and thus many probably got used in overhaul operations when "low number" rifles were pulled from service, and others probably got integrated into rifle production at Springfield. Eventually it was decided that the cost benefits of using the marked but not numbered receivers with Springfield numbers applied outweighed any local pride or whatever other concerns might have existed about such a combination. Rifles with this combination are scarce, and the estimate of about 2,000 made that way seems about right. However, only an extremely addicted Springfield collector would get real excited about such things, and in my experience the premium in value over a "correct" combination is not all that great. If some sick puppy thinks they have to have one RIGHT NOW and want to spend a gazillion dollars for one, a seller may get lucky. In most cases, either the buyer or seller will probably not even notice the fact that it is a Springfield number with Rock Island name.

Anyone who would like to see what one of these looks like is welcome to check out the display of "10 Oddball M1903 Springfields" at the January 2002 Utah Gun Collectors Association show (http://www.ugca.org/ugca02jan/02janmain.htm#03). There are lots of photos of neat displays, so it may take a while for them to get loaded down to this display.

As always, I recommend William S. Brophy's "Springfield 1903 Rifles" and Clark Campbell's books (especially his new one which I have not seen yet), and others think highly of Bruce Canfield's book on M1903 rifles. One book I would never use for anything except outhouse or fireplace chores is one by a Mr. Harrison which just has too much nonsense and misinformation for me. John Spangler


# 6019 - Rare '03 Sight
6/7/03
Mike

I own a "Warner" rear sight for the 03, patented in 1914 by Robert Warner and Adolph Niedner. I have read that only 400 were produced, and that they weren't adopted by the military. My question is, are they rare, seen often or sought after by 03 collectors? Any idea of its value? I have never installed it on my 03, but it is a great looking sight! Any help you could give me would be appreciated.

Answer:
Mike- I am not familiar with them, but mere low production does not necessarily equal high demand or value. The only thing scarcer might be someone who wants one. My guess is that there are a handful of M1903 collectors so loaded down with standard issue stuff that they would be willing to buy one just to add something to their collection. Value would be whatever buyer and seller could agree on. I would think that $50-150 would be a reasonable starting point, but don't turn down any reasonable offer!


# 5519 - Parkerized PP
6/7/03
Richard, St Louis, MO

Walther - PP - 9MMk - Parkerized - 32543 -

Crown? over N proof mark. No military marks. Stamped by Interarms, Alexandria, VA. What is the manufacture place and date of this gun? It has been parkerized in the past. How has this affected the value?

Answer:
Richard, I do not know of any available serial number records to help us pin down a manufacture date for your pistol. The crown over N proof mark that you describe can help a little. It is a German proof mark that was in use before 1939. Because of the proof mark it would be safe to conclude that your pistol was manufactured in Germany prior to 1939.

OldGuns.net has offered several commercial Walther PP pistols for sale in the past few years and they have not been especially fast sellers. The caliber of your pistol (380 rather than 32) will increase it's value but the Parkerized finish which is not original will decrease value by as much as one half. Marc


# 5518 - Old 30-30
6/3/03
Tom Mpls, MN

Winchester - 1894 - 30-30 - 26: - Blue - 310800 -

a 55 stamped in front of trigger Circle with w p on top of each other on bbl and action. Nickel steel barrel Especially for smokeless powder on barrel. Platinum front site 3 leaf rear site 50,100,200 yrds. seems to wieght about 8 lbs over-all length is 44'' what is this worth and should I let my son use it as his first deer rifle?

Answer:
Tom you have a fairly old rifle, my records indicate that it was manufactured in 1903. Values for model 94 rifles depend on several things, two of the most important are the condition of the rifles finish and if the rifle has had any modifications since it left the factory. A Model 94 of this vintage in original condition with most of the original finish remaining can be worth as much as two thousand dollars or more for examples with some of the popular special order factory features. Over the years many old rifles have been modified, common modifications like the addition of a recoil pad, being drilled and tapped for a scope mount or if the rifle has been refinished will drastically lower value. If the rifle is not all original or if it is just in poor condition value could go as low as one or two hundred dollars. A model 94 is good choice for a deer rifle, but if your rifle is all original and in good condition I would advise you to retire it. Marc


# 5507 - Plainfield Carbine Used In WWII?
6/3/03
Craig Cincinnati, Ohio

Carbine - M-1 - .30 - Blue - T448 -

Plainfield Machine Dunellen NJ Would like any info on this gun.... Was my uncles in WW II

Answer:
Craig, sorry to destroy a family myth but your Plainfield carbine could not have been used by your uncle in WWII. The Plainfield Machine Company of Dunellen and then Middlesex, New Jersey, made M1 Carbine replicas in several calibers including 22 and 30 M1 Carbine starting in the early 1960s. Plainfield was acquired by Iver Johnson in 1975 and carbine production continued thereafter under the Iver Johnson name.

Perhaps over the years the family story about your uncle and his carbine has become slightly distorted. Maybe the story should be that the carbine was used (after the war) by your uncle, who was in WWII. Marc


# 5587 - Mauser Sporting Rifles
6/3/03
Billy,Oatmeal,Texas

Mausers - All Sporting Rifles - All - All - Blue - NONE -

I am very interested in your opinion of the best or several of the best books to identify and relatively value the Mauser commercial sporting rifles that I have become addicted to trying to collect. I thank you for your answer in advance. Billy

Answer:
Billy- That is an easy question, even though I have not actually read the book. You need to get Mauser: Original Oberndorf Sporting Rifles by Jon Speed, Walter Schmid, and Reiner Herrmann, published by Collector Grade Publications. You may also want to get Jon Speed's Mauser Smallbores: Sporting Training and Target Rifles. That publisher produces some of the consistently best gun books available, along with Man At Arms/ Mowbray publishing. John Spangler


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