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# 3026 - Western Auto revelation 7/29/00 Trac
Western Auto Supply Co. - revelation, model 110 - 22 cal - 21" - Barrel Blue Bolt, Trigger stainless(I NA -
nothing that I can see. It is a bolt action with a tubular magazine. Should hold about 12 to 15 rounds (a guess). I got it in exchange for some favors performed. I have many firearm manuals and it is not on any of them. I was wondering if it was made by Sears? Could you tell me who it was made by and a rough date that it was made. I realize that it is not serialized. Maybe a price estimate (just for curiosity sake). Thank you Western Field Model 110 Model 110 is the Mossberg model 395K REVELATION Tradename used on sporting arms made for Western Auto Stores.
Answer: Trac, although Sears may have offered a similar rifle with their trademark, both Sears and Western Auto are firearms dealers, not firearms manufacturers. My references tell me that the Western Auto Model 110 was a bolt action rifle chambered in .22 LR, with a 22 inch barrel, that could be ordered with either a tubular or clip type magazine. The Model 110 was manufactured for Western Auto by Marlin whose original designation for the rifle was the Model 781. Marlin discontinued production of the Model 781 in 1988. There is little or no collectors interest in firearms with the Sears or Western Auto trademark, values will be in the $50 to $75 range depending upon condition. Marc
# 3025 - Spanish Mauser 7/29/00 Jim Tulsa, Ok US
Spanish Mauser - 1916 short rifle - Modified to .308 - 22.5 inches - Blue - 3z2349 or 13585 both on receiver -
Sword crossed with some kind of axe on receiver and bolt is either stainless or nickel Purchased through the mail and took it to my gunsmith before firing. He advised me not to shoot factory loads but said I could download my own and safely shoot this rifle. I have fired about 30 rounds through it and so far so good. My question is where can I find more info about the history of this particular rifle. Like where and when it was made. Can't seem to find much on the internet except that it's dangerous to fire factory .308 in this rifle. The rifle itself is in pretty good shape and I have become somewhat attached to it.
Answer: Jim- We have answered a number of questions on these common and inexpensive rifles, and share your gunsmith's concern over their safety for use. There is no serial number database on these that I know of. The insignia should help out some, but it may be some sort of police or civil guard type marking. Enjoy your rifle- CAREFULLY! John Spangler
# 3001 - Mauser Sporter 7/29/00 Dan, Northwest Province, South Africa
Mauser - Possibly Model 31 B Sporter ??? - 9mm Mauser 9x57 (NOT 9.3x57) - 23 Inches Including Chamber - Blue - 6146 -
On Barrel: "crown St.m.G" below this "N 16gr"On action: "crown B crown U"on opposite side of action the number 6146no further markings at all that are visible except for a crown B crown U on the top of the bolt. Any information will be appreciated. Also any data about this calibre which seems to me to be very rare.
Answer: Dan- Sounds like a classic pre-war Mauser sporter. Naturally you see more of these, especially in the bigger African game calibers in your part of the world than we do around here. We honestly don't know much about either of these topics. Ludwig Olsen's Mauser Bolt Rifles notes that the 9x57 cartridge was very popular and one of the standard options on many Mauser sporters. This book has an extensive section on the many rifle variations. I believe there is also a whole book on Mauser Sporters, perhaps by Jan Speed, published by Collector Grade Publications. I do not have a copy, but I am sure that either of these books would identify the model of your rifle. Olsen's book also has some info on various bullet weights and velocities, but not really reloading data on the cartridge. John Spangle
Enfield 1917 - 1917 Enfield, Eddystone - 30-06 - Standard - Some Blued, Some Parkerized - 614870 -
Barrel is marked Caistaiby, 30-06 P-17, U.S.A.. The receiver is marked with a 5 digit number which has been obliterated with what looks like Japanese characters not Chinese which would make sense. Just below the receiver on the stock is a rectangular mark with 3 GM-k marked inside the rectangle. I know this old gun has been around but would like to know just where. I can't seem to find anything in my research on Caistaiby.
Answer: Darrel- I cannot find anything about the history of your specific rifle from US military records. It was probably finished in the summer of 1918 and issued the, and then returned to storage after WW1. During WW2 it was undoubtedly among the huge number of M1917 rifles sent to various foreign allies who desperately needed guns. These included the British, Canadians, French, Chinese, and other countries. At some point it became excess totheir needs (probably about the time they got enough AK-47s or M16s to outfit their army) and the M1917 rifles were sold as surplus. Eventually they returned to the US and were imported by Century Arms International, of St. Albans, Vermont. This was after 1968 as there was no requirement for importers to be marked on guns before that. I cannot explain (nor read) the oriental markings you mention. The 3 GM-K markings is seen quite a bit, but no one seems to know what it is, other than a US military overhaul or inspection mark of some sort. It is found on M1903 and M1917 rifles, and even a M1903A3, so it had to still be in use during WW2, but may have started much earlier. My personal theory with absolutely no evidence to back it up, is that this was the earliest marking used by Ogden, Utah Arsenal, before they went to the familiar OG, or OGEK markings. Hope this helps you understand some of the history behind this tool used to defend freedom in two or more wars. John Spangler
# 3034 - Stoger 7/25/00 Stan, Tuscaloosa, AL
Stoeger - Charleville - 69 -
I would like to know about when these type guns were made by Stoeger. Does Stoeger still produce antique type firearms.
Answer: Stan, it is doubtful that your revolver was made by Stoeger, they are an importer of firearms not a manufacturer. Over the last seventy years, Stoeger has imported a wide variety of firearms, most of which having been good quality coming from known manufacturers in Europe. To see the products that Stoeger is currently offering I would advise that you write them for a catalog at: Stoeger Industries 5 Mansard Ct, Wayne, NJ 07470-6040 Phone: (973)872-9500. Marc
# 2990 - Hofbuschennacher Rifle 7/25/00 Don TN
Do you have any information on German rifles apparently manufactured in Germany by a company named HOFBUCHSENNACHER? Thanks, DSC
Answer: Don- Sorry, there is no good reference on German makers that I know of. I believe Hofbuschen is sort of a generic term meaning sporting arms or hunting rifle or something like that, but se no hable Kraut, so cannot be sure. John Spangler
# 3020 - J. C. Higgins 44DL 7/22/00 Nora, Wildwood, Alberta
J. C. Higgins - 44DL - 22 - 21 Inches -
Lever action My father bought this gun in 1962, he special ordered it from Sears. The gun has lever action, we can only find information on barrel action guns of similar age and make. My father says the gun has a Monte Carlo stock. The gun has a nitrogen filled 4x15 scope. Can you give us some information on how much the gun might be worth?
Answer: Nora, my references tell me that the Model 44DL was a 22 caliber lever action rifle with a tubular magazine, 22 inch barrel, open sights and Monte Carlo pistol grip stock. The 44DL was manufactured for Sears from 1959 to 1965 by Marlin whose designation for the rifle was the Model 57. There is little or no collectors interest in firearms with the Sears trademark, values will be in the $50 to $75 range depending upon condition. Marc
# 2946 - Page Lewis .22 Rifle 7/22/00 Reba, Dunlap, TN, USA
Page-Lewis Arms Co. - Springfield Jr. - Model 50 - .22 Lr - 20"??? - Blue - NO SERIAL # ON IT -
none I want to find out any information I can about this gun. It is a single shot, bolt action, but you have to pull back a "pin"??? to cock it for firing. I inherited this rifle from my Dad. He received it when he was 9years old. Said his Dad ordered it from a Sears catalog. This would have been sometime around 1920 - 1925. My father has since passed away, but one day I will pass this gun on to my son and I would like to pass on what information about it I can. Thank you for any help you can give me. Me, my husband, and son are all NRA members.
Answer: Reba- Congratulations on being a 100% NRA family! Hope the good people of Tennessee are repulsed by the evil anti-gun ways of your former Senator Gore and you will all vote for the Texas Governor who still trusts honest citizens.
The Page Lewis story is a long, complicated and fascinating insight into the incestuous nature of the gun industry. Mr. Page and Mr. Lewis had been associated with Stevens then went out on their own, made guns for Eugene Reising, and later sold their operation to Savage who also acquired Stevens. Eventually Page Lewis guns were sold by Stevens under their "Springfield" brand name (not to be confused with the government's Springfield Armory which was about 10 miles from the Page Lewis and Stevens operations in Chicopee Falls, Mass. These folks also were involved with the Stevens- Druyea automobile Company, L.S. Starrett (tool makers), Hunter Arms Company, High Standard, and several other non-gun related manufacturing enterprises. People forget that innovative gun-making technology was at the very core of the rise of American manufacturing and tool making success, but that is another long and interesting story in itself.
Page Lewis started off making simple rolling block rifles with frames of laminated steel (a sandwich of two thin side plates with a « inch thick spacer piece between) and then moved on to simple bolt action designs. Their model "D was an entry level gun for junior shooters that had to be manually cocked, a desirable safety feature for youthful shooters as well as less expensive to make. This model was produced 1923-1928 with a 20 inch barrel. During this time Savage/Stevens bought the assets of Page Lewis and in 1928 they introduced the Model 50 Springfield Junior which was little more than a Model D with a bit larger stock and a 24 inch barrel. This model, priced at $5.87 was discontinued in 1933 in favor of the Model 52 with a 22 inch barrel and this model sold for $3.98 in the 1933 Sears Roebuck catalog. Most inexpensive rifles and shotguns were not serial numbered prior to the Gun Control Act of 1968 when a requirement for serial numbers was imposed on all firearms.
In the pre-1968 era anyone of any age could order almost any gun (except machine guns) through the mail, and boys 10-12 years old routinely were given guns and taught to use them safely. Crime was not a problem and accidental shootings were few (although stupid people have always done stupid things and no amount of law making will ever change that.) Most schools had rifle teams, and students worked on guns in shop classes, or took them to school to go hunting or target shooting on the way home. Students did not shoot each other or teachers in schools. The fact that we have kids killing people in school and elsewhere with guns today is not due to availability of guns, but the scarcity of moral values and respect for laws and common sense. Well-intentioned liberal policies and government intrusion into basic core values of American freedom (and responsibility) have created or worsened these problems. We need to reject any further move in that direction and restore freedom and demand personal responsibility from everyone. John Spangler
# 2947 - Thompson SMG M1A1 7/22/00 Mark Colo. Springs
U.S. Property Marked. Registered during the GCA 68 Amnesty. w/ Capture papers. Taken from a dead V.C in the Mekong in 1967. What is the date of manufacture? I'm having a hard time finding out any info on the manufacture date and number manufactured. Could you please help?
Answer: Mark- Glad to know your fully automatic gun is properly registered, otherwise it would not be worth knowing anything about anyway. Bruce Canfield's excellent US Infantry Weapons of WW2 tells us that 539,142 M1A1 Thompsons were made in 1942-44 by Auto Ordnance Corp and Savage. These are very popular with collectors based on their frequent appearance in the movies. However, based on my limited experience with them in the military, I consider them to be overly heavy, awkward, uncontrollable pieces of junk. The UZI is far superior, but of course was not invented in time for use in WW2. John Spangler
# 3005 - Walther Olymipa 7/18/00 Romey
Walther - Olympia - 22 - 9.6inches - Blue - 3724 -
With weights, I am interested in values of like guns and history. Can you help?
Answer: Romey, the Walther Olympia was an improvement on the earlier Walther Target Model of 1932, produced to equip the German team for the Berlin Olympic Games of 1936. The Olympia design was much the same as the Target Model in that it had a fixed barrel, open-topped slide and internal hammer but was more streamlined and had a better balance. Most Olympia pistols were manufactured in .22LR, but there were also some chambered in .22 Short with alloy slides. The Olympia had a large contoured wooden grip, which extended well below the bottom of the butt frame causing the necessity of the magazine bottom plate to be fitted with a wooden block extension. Numerous Olympia variants were produced to suit the needs of competition shooters:
The basic Olympia had a 190mm barrel and 10-shot magazine
The Jager Model which was intended for German national contests (Deutsche Jagerschaft) had a 100mm barrel and 10-shot magazine,
The Funfkampf model had a 240mm barrel and a 10-shot magazine
The Schnellfeuer model had a 190mm barrel and a six-shot magazine, it was chambered for .22 Short
The Sport model had a 120mm barrel and 10-shot magazine.
Walther offered many options of sights, grips and balance weights and so the Olympia can be found in a variety of configurations. The Olympia was a first class pistol, it lived up to Walther's hopes and enabled the German team to take the Gold Medal in 1936. The Olympia design was revived after the war by Hammerli of Switzerland. Walther Olympia values range from $300 to over $1500 depending upon variant and condition. Marc
case hardened receiver with scroll decoration, saddle ring and brass plated spring cover. The History of Winchester Firearms 1866-1966 tells me that this gun is a 70th anniversary commemorative, the serial number, however dates the gun at 1980. Can you shed any light on this? Was there a second issue for the 90th anniversary? Thanks, any help appreciated!!
Answer: Brad- Although there was a very simlar commemorative for National Jello Week or one of the other historic events honored by special edition gussied up 94 Winchesters, this seems to be a failry standard variation. I believe it is the "Model 94 Antique Carbine" which was made from 1964 to 1983. If correct, values tend to be about the same as for the other common post-64 models- basically $150-250. Nice deer rifle probably, but the whole frenzy for commemorative type guns is incomprehensible to me. John Spangler
# 2938 - Special Forces Bayonet Knife 7/18/00 Thomas, Arkansas, USA
I saw on ebay, a survival knife that was marked "special forces" on the blade and the scabbard was designed like the M9 bayonet but had raised printing on it, giving survival information like morse code and signal instructions. I am not interested in the knife but would like to know if any one knows were I can get such a scabbard at? I should have asked the ebay saler at the time but forgot. Any information would be helpful, Model?,Manufacturer?
Answer: Tom- As far as I know these are an unauthorized copy or variant based on the popular US M9 Bayonets made by LanCay. I believe they are made by folks in China, probably buddies of your ex-governor. If you want one of the scabbard, you will probably have to buy the whole rig. The Special Forces designation is probably just marketing nonsense. John Spangler
# 2997 - Pieper Pistols 7/15/00 Shaun, Newport News, VA
"Pistolet Automatique" written on left side, below the slide."Modele 1920" written just below "Pistolet Automatique" Has other strange markings toward the front of the gun (not sure what they mean, or what they are)Has "Pieper Patent" written under the slide on the right side. Has wood grips. My Grandfather gave this pistol to me a few years back, and said that he picked it up in WWII off of an Italian cop. It was stored with a loaded magazine for the better part of 50years, so the spring is now very weak. I also believe that the rest of the springs in gun have grown weak over the years. Is there any way to find replacements for these springs? The rest of the gun is in excellent shape, and it still has the original leather holster (also in excellent shape). Is this gun worth anything? Would it be better to keep the original springs or try to find replacements?
Answer: Shaun, I could not find information about the Pieper Model 1920 in any of my reference books, but I was able to find information about the N. Pieper company. Nicholas Pieper first patented a unique tip-down barrel automatic pistol design in 1908. Piper pistols were available in 6.35mm and 7.65mm calibre and were manufactured by the Belgian firm of N. Pieper. Many Pieper pistols incorporated an unusual takedown feature, pushing down the barrel and slide lock on the left side of the receiver above the trigger guard permitted the barrel and slide assemblies to be lifted up out of engagement and easily removed. Reportedly, Pieper pistols were of good quality and well made but the company went out of business sometime in the early 1920s probably because they were priced out of the market by cheaper and simpler models. Unfortunately there is not a lot of collectors interest in Pieper pistols, values are in the $125.00 or less range. For replacement springs try Gun Parts Corp., there is a link to them on our links page, if that doesn't work, try posting on our free Militaria And Gun Wanted List page. Marc
# 2945 - Acier Finn Pistol 7/15/00 Larry, Enterprise Al
Acier Finn - Not Marked - 380 Centerfire (Rimed Black Power) - 5 In. - Nickel - 1060 -
Standard Belgium Black powder proofs, Flobert pistol proofs. Hand engraved bird over (Acier Finn) at breech on both barrels, sidelock shotgun action on a beautiful hammered s/s pistol, medium amount of medium quality hand engraving, real mother of pearl grips, finger extension on trigger guard, barrel lock beneath breach, walnut cased, riffled barrel I have been a collector of classic side by side weapons, for many years. while this is not of the quality of a high grade 410 Parker, still This peace caught my eye three years ago, and has been in my collection since. I have been unable to locate any data on this type of weapon, or the maker, from any of my usual sources (i.e. Blue Book, Standard Catalogue of Firearms, ect.) The term Flobert came from my Proof mark reference, without a definition of what it means. 20 My inquiry's are, 1. What does the term Flobert pistol / cartridge represent? 2. Were there many s/s centerfire cartridge pistols built in Europe? (Only one I have seen after 30 years of looking) 3. I would like to find some research links, contacts or similar pieces, if you have any suggestions. In closing I would like to thank you for this site, I have really enjoyed it, and thank you for your support of the NRA !!!!! 20 Larry Lifetime member
Answer: Larry- I do appreciate your detailed description and NRA membership and wish I could help but I just don't know a thing about oddball European pistols. Sorry. John Spangler
# 2929 - Bisbing Pennsylvania Rifle 7/15/00 David, West Hazleton, USA
A. S. Bisbing - PA Long Rifle - 32 - Long Rifle - Brown - None -
I have a percussion long rifle with an octagon barrel made by A. S. Bisbing. Do you have any idea when and where this rifle was manufactured?
Answer: David- Amos S. Bisbing worked in Tannersville, PA in 1861, and (presumably following a period of service in the Army in the Civil War) in White Haven, AP circa 1870-1890. He is known as a maker of high quality percussion swivel breech rifles (These are double barrel rifles, wither there is one lock, and the barrels can be turned on a central pin to line the other barrel's nipple up under the hammer to fire again.) These dates came from directories and this is all the information available in Frank Sellers' "American Gunsmiths." The small caliber is typical of rifles made during the waning days of the popularity of the muzzle loading rifles. John Spangler
# 2926 - Springfield .50 Trapdoor 7/15/00 Jay, Thompson Falls, MT
1863 on lock - 1870, eagle head, crossed arrows, U.S. on breechblock faint stamping on left side lock panel, 'T'or 'J', 'W', 'B'or 'R'This is a 2 band rifle with U.S. stamped on buttplate tang This rifle was given to me and I am unsure if it is unaltered. I have never had a trapdoor before and would like to know if it is collectable and who I can trust for parts. It is missing the ramrod, the upright portion of the rear sight blade is broken off and the arm of the hinge pin is broken off.
Answer: Jay- It sounds like you have Model 1868 .50-70 Trapdoor. These were the only .50-70s that were regularly serial numbered, and the barrel length and two bands are correct for this model. We should have one on our collectible firearms catalog page with phots so you can compare with yours. We have a cleaning rod on the accessories page. The sight ladder will be tougher to find. These are neat old guns, and you can get .50-70 brass (Try S&S on our links page- they are also a great source for parts. Frank Higgenson on our links page is also highly recommended for parts, but does not have brass and a lot of the other non-parts stuff that S&S carries. I have done business with both these places for at least 15 years and these people know their stuff, have good items at fair prices and are just all around great people.).
The dates on some of these .50 caliber trapdoors can be confusing. The locks are usually recycled Civil War Musket locks, with dates ranging from 1863 to 1865. The breechblocks have the date of manufacture, not the model, hence a Model 1868 rifle with 1863 and 1870 dates on it. John Spangler
British rifle, percussion - Tower, 1863 - 50 cal. - 28 in. - not sure, not blue - none found -
British crown behind hammer and 1863 in front of hammer on the side plate with TOWER underneath it, hard to read but maybe a 25 on top of barrel, swivel or corkscrew ramrod. local gunsmith confirmed English workmanship and actions and authenisthic. How can I find out more information about this guns history and value? Thank you.
Answer: Ted- During the Civil War years (1861-1865 for anyone who skipped a lot of classes or had their history classes canceled so they could attend conflict resolution and diversity enhancement classes) many guns made in England were purchased by the U.S. or Confederate forces for use against the other. One model (the Pattern 1858) two band carbine or musketoon had a 28 inch barrel and was intended for use by cavalry or artillery or other mounted troops. These were .577 caliber muzzle loaders. They are a very handy size and a lot of fun to shoot. In 8th grade I trimmed a musket down to this size and rebuilt major portions of the stock in shop class and the teacher was very happy to have me working on this and learning proper tool use and shop safety. Now we would both be thrown in jail. Anyway, the original short musketoons were pretty accurate. Tests by the late Jac Weller of a wide variety of Civil War guns being fired by several different shooters of varying skill showed that the Enfield style rifle muskets in all barrel lengths were quite deadly at ranges up to about 500 yards. It was still hazardous to one's health to taunt an enemy even at 1000 yards. The Enfield style muskets were sometimes made by the British arsenal at Enfield using fully interchangeable parts, and sometimes by other makers or groups of makers where parts were handmade and not fully interchangeable. Regardless of where they were made, collectors lump them all together as "Enfields". They originally had blued barrels and were very handsome guns. Over time the blue has turned to plum or brown patina or just plain old grungy rust. Some other guns used by union forces had the blue removed (a rag and a handful of sand and a few hours will do the job) so that the Enfields would look similar to the Springfields which had a polished steel ("bright") finish. The "25" is part of the proof marking and has something to do with the bore diameter. The musketoons were originally rifles with five lands and grooves, while the longer (39") rifle muskets have three lands and grooves.
More history on these sorts of guns can be found in "Firearms From Europe" by David Noe, Larry Yantz and James B. Whisker. It has a lot of excellent information but has some annoying characteristics that make it not very user-friendly. Another book, "The British Soldier's Firearms" by C.H. Roads is the definitive study of the Enfield rifles in all their variations during this period.
As far as value- If it is an original musketoon made in that length it may be worth several hundred to a thousand dollars or so. If it is like the one I fixed up in shop class, then a lot less. John Spangler
# 2989 - Remington Rolling Block #4 7/11/00 Ed, Seattle WA
Remington - Rolling Block #4? - .22rf - 22 1/2 " - Blue - 91489 -
serial # (?) on underside of bbl, ahead of that is "22". Top of bbl, ahead of rear sight "Remington Arms Co. Ilion, N.Y." No other markings Is this a Remington #4? Condition is NRA very good, about 80% original finish, bore pitted, rifling good. This is a small rifle, perhaps a boy's rifle, but fits me ok (I am 5'8" tall man) What is approximate value please? Roughly when was it made?
Answer: Ed, Remington first introduced the Number 4 rolling block rifle in 1890 at a cost of only $9.00. The Number 4 was initially available with either a 22.5 or 24 inch full octagon barrel chambered in .22 or .32 rimfire, in 1898 .25-10 Stevens rimfire was added. The Number 4 was Remington's first true "boy's rifle" and it turned out to be one of the best-selling sporting firearms ever manufactured by Remington. With a total weight of only four pounds, four ounces, the No. 4 was small enough for a boy or girl, but it also felt good for an adult to shoot. Despite it's low cost, the Number 4 was a well-made firearm and held up well to prolonged use. In 1902 Remington improved the No. 4 rifle by making it take-down, whereby the barrel could be easily removed from the receiver by unlocking a twist of a lever on the right side of the frame. Despite the addition of the take-down feature, Remington lowered the rifle's cost to $8. Beginning in 1906, the No. 4 was also available in smoothbore for rimfire shot cartridges. It is estimated that over 300,000 No. 4 rifles were manufactured from 1890 to 1933. Flayderman places a value for these in NRA Very Good condition at $150.00. Marc
# 2913 - Spanish Model 1916 Mauser 7/11/00 Dan Wytheville, VA
Mauser type - military bolt action, 5 round mag - .308, suspect a conversion - appx 21 inches - blue - OT-10552 -
There are no markings other than the serial #. I have a Mauser type rifle in .308 Winchester caliber. I would like to know its country of origin and any other details you may be able to provide. It has a sling swivel on the left side of the forearm (attached to the ring which holds the stock together). The rear sling attachment is set into the left side of the stock. The lower part of the stock extends in a straight line from the rear of the trigger guard to the buttplate, like on Swedish versions I've seen. What was the original caliber of this rifle? Do you know when it may have been converted to .308 Winchester, and for whom? I suspect the rifle itself is older than the .308 cartridge. There is a two piece cleaning rod which fits under the barrel and is retained by a spring lever located just behind the forearm ring. The front sight is partially shielded on each side by vertical extensions which curve in toward each other at the top. Any help on identifying this rifle would be greatly appreciated. Oh yeah, maybe the "OT" at the beginning of the serial number means something...
Answer: Dan- You probably have a Spanish Model 1916 Mauser rifle. Many of these were made by the arsenal at Oviedo, Spain and often have "OT" as part of the serial number. These were originally made in 7mm Mauser caliber. In the early 1960s the Spanish adopted the CETME assault rifle which used a 7.62 NATO size cartridge, but I believe was loaded to lower pressures. The Spanish then converted a lot of their older rifles for this new cartridge. In my opinion the M196 Mauser is not suitable for the full strength 7.62 (or.308 commercial counterpart) cartridge and I would NEVER fire one, even though I do not hesitate to shoot low number M1903 Springfields. I will say that I have never heard of any problems with the Spanish rifles but that might only mean I am not very well informed, or people are very quiet (or dead) if they had a problem. These do not seem to sell for very high prices on the collector market, and I have often seen them offered at well under $100.00. John Spangler
# 2912 - Modern Muzzle Loader 7/11/00 Deb
Zouave Rifle Mussel Load - 9156 - 44 - Walnut -
a box with AB in it A circle with a star in it with PN underneath itA circle with a star in it with a crest in a box underneath it I think it is a repo of the Zouave rifle but not sure. Need to know info about it. Need to know what ball size to use. Do you know where I can purchase lead to make balls?
Answer: Deb- This gets into the area of modern muzzle loaders and shooting them. I do not know much about this and cannot give you any useful information. Two wonderful organizations with lots of people interested in shooting these are: The National Muzzle Loading Rifle Association (NMLRA) headquartered in Indiana. Much of their interest is toward the flintlock end of the spectrum but they include percussion as well, and have many affiliated clubs all over the country. They are also interested in camping, and costumes and the like. The other outfit is the North-South Skirmish Association (N-SSA)dedicated to shooting Civil War arms of all sizes from revolvers to cannons. They also have affiliated organizations all over the country but mainly east of the Mississippi. There is a comparable outfit for the western part of the US. Emphasis is on team matches with muskets or carbines, and shooters wear Civil War style uniforms. We have links to both NMLRA and N-SSA on our links page. John Spangler
# 2916 - Snider-Enfield 7/8/00 David, Thunder Bay, ON
Snider-Enfield - Mk II ** - .577 - About 54 In. - Very Nice Brown - NONE -
W D with an arrow down in between. L.A. Co. 1861 above the trigger on the metal. Lots of other small markings. Large Crown above trigger too. When and where was this gun used? (For export to U.S.? British Imperial Forces?) It isn't Canadian as far as I can tell since it has the London Tower Armory Stamp (1860) on the stock instead of the Dominion Stamp. What value range is it? Thanks, David
Answer: David- The markings on the various parts indicate when they were made, not necessarily the most recent work on the gun as a whole. It sounds like your rifle started off as a muzzle loading Pattern 1853 or 1858 .577 rifle musket made in 1860 or 1861. (That 54 inch barrel still has me confused- the normal choices from breechplug to muzzle are 39, 33 and 24 inches.) While many of these were made for export to the US (or Confederacy) during the Civil War, very few returned to England for conversion to Snider breechloaders. Large numbers were sold off from US Army surplus stocks around 1870. Many of those went to France, but some may have ended up in England as well. A more likely explanation is that your rifle was converted and made available for private sale from among the rifles that remained in England. There was a big market for military arms at various governmental levels not supplied with militia arms by the national government, and some units provided their own arms. During the period 1865-1900 there was a transition underway from a dual system of elite "volunteer" militia units (providing their own arms and handsome uniforms) and the common militia (in which all or most able bodied men were supposed to be enrolled, but often poorly armed- if at all) to a smaller, better organized, and tightly controlled National Guard or Reserve force with uniforms and arms supplied by the central government. Many Sniders seem to have found their way to Canada for distribution to the militia by both the central government and private purchase, so yours is probably one of the latter. For what it is worth, Sniders seem to have the serial numbers on the bottom of the breechblocks (when they have one). John Spangler
# 2914 - Brown Bess 7/8/00 Pete, Tiger, Ga. USA
Brown Bess? - about .75 - 42 inches - none - none -
Lock looks like a !st model Bess, and is marked Galton on the tail. There is a crown between the hammer and the frizzen with the word "LIBERTAS" underneath the crown. The barrel has a single unidentifiable proof mark at the breech and has a bayonet lug near the muzzle. Stock appears to be 1st Model Bess which has been shortened at time of assembly, but the brass, while similar, is not the same as any Bess illustrated. What is this musket?
Answer: Pete- From your description is sounds like it is more or less similar to a Brown Bess of mixed models but not exactly. Libertas is not a maker I can identify, and therefore I think it may have been a purchaser or unit/corporate type marking rather than a maker. Perhaps a ship, a trading company, a specific outpost/branch, station of some sort. A better clue is the name Galton. We can find Samuel, Thomas and F. Galton listed as gunmakers in the late 18th/early 19th century period in Robert Gardner's "Small Amrs Makers". DeWitt Bailey & Douglas Nie's English Gunmakers hgas more definitive identifcations. One Samuel is listed 1799-1818 as the last of the family to carry on the gun business. One generation back we find Samuel John Galton, who was the son in Galton & Son circa 1774-1797. Going back one step further we find Samuel Galton (senior) who brought his son into the partnership in 1774 following the death of his earlier partner, James Farmer in 1773 where they had operated as Farmer & Galton. Samuel (senior) retired in 1795, so they may have shifted from Galton & Son to just Galton about that time. This carefully researched book notes: "The firm maintained warehouses in Bristol and Liverpool, and was largely concerned in the production of cheap guns for the slave trade and military arms for the British Government and, from 1803, the East India Company." A shortened first model musket, or one made using parts from one, would be consistent with "cheap guns for the slave trade" which also would have been suitable for arming merchant ships during this period when piracy was a serious threat, as well as the constant menace from privateers and naval vessels from the French who were perpetually preying on their neighbors across the channel when not otherwise engaged in adventures elsewhere. John Spangler
# 2908 - H&A Safety Police Revolver 7/8/00 Bob, Descanso, Ca. USA
Hopkins And Allen Arms Co. - Safety Police - 32 Short - 2 7/8" - Blue - 34326 -
Norwich Conn. USA Pat'd Aug. 21, 1906 I found this firearm in my deceased fathers belongings and would appreciate any information you can provide concerning it. Date of manufacture, any specific use when made as in police, military, etc. Does the company still produce firearms? Anything interesting concerning this pistol etc. etc. Thank you, Bob Slocum
Answer: Bob, the Hopkins and Allen Arms Co. of Norwich, CT manufactured inexpensive Saturday night special type handguns from 1902 to about 1914. The Safety Police model was one of their better designs, it was a break top revolver that came with hard rubber or pearl grips, available in 22, .32 and .38 calibers. I do not know for sure whether or not any Safety Police revolvers were used by police departments but it is unlikely. I can tell you that these revolvers were never issued to any U.S. armed forces. Collector interest in this type of revolver is low, values are in the $50 to $100 range. Marc
# 2915 - Maschinengewer Luger 7/4/00 Harvey
Luger - DWM 1917 - 9mm - 3 in - blue - 5274 -
Toggle is mismatched ser. # 07 rest matches including magazine. Gripstrap is marked RIR 72 and MGK 412. Right side of receiver forward are 4 German proofs. "Geschert" under safety. Thanks What info if any might you have regarding this piece?, specifically the regimental markings?"
Answer: Harvey, I am always happy to find German weapons with regimental markings, for me the markings add to the history and nostalgia of the piece and make it much more desirable. Jeff Noll's book "The Imperial German Regimental Marking", has several examples of Lugers that have similar markings. From the examples in Mr. Noll's book I am able conclude that "R.I.R. 72" stands for "Reserve-Infanterie-Regiment number 72" and "MGK 412" stands for "Maschinengewer-Kompagnie 412". Hope that this helps, Marc.
# 2921 - Colt M1917 "USMC Property" 7/4/00 L. Casserly, Murrieta CA, USA
On Butt "U.S. Army 107006". Bottom of Barrel "United Sates Property. "On Left Side Plate behind Cylinder U.S.M.C. Property. Colt Rampart in usual location. Smooth grips (Rough) I would like to get information on why the gun is marked as described. I checked your web page concerning serial number ranges for military guns and it appears I am out of the normal range. The gun looks very original, but I collect rifles and know little about Colts pistols. Any help...and you would be my hero!
Answer: Sir- Colt (and S&W) M1917 revolvers had both a Colt serial number (on the frame and cylinder crane where it opens up, and a military serial number. These ran more or less in sequence after adjusting for the huge number of commercial revolvers already made. Your commercial serial number seems to be in synch with the military number so I do not see anything out of range there. The USMC property markings are a matter of concern, as there are precious few (if any) documented cases where some jarhead was assigned to sit down with a rotary engraving machine to carefully mark various revolvers this way. Unfortunately, there is pretty much a consensus among collectors that some ex-bubblehead in California with the initials D.B. has been applying USMC property and USCG property markings to otherwise unremarkable military procured revolvers and selling them to gullible collectors who have a fetish for U.S. Marine Corps (or Coast Guard) rarities. I think the chances are about 99 to 1 that you have fallen for one of those. If original (and unless you have some good documentation, it will be darn hard to prove it is original) then you have a real prize. John Spangler
# 2923 - Whitneyville Armory Revolver 7/4/00 Chris Stonehenge G.B.
Whitney - Help - .31 - 4 1/8" (Octagonal) Barrel - Brass Frame, Nothing On Barrel Or Chamber. - 547 -
WHITNEYILLE ARMORY CT USA Along top flat of barrel. Could you please offer me an approximate date of manufacture along with typical usage? How rare is it? Thank you
Answer: Chris- I can explain this easier than you can explain those big stones stacked on top of each other in your neighborhood.
The Whitneyville Armory marking was used on Whitney revolvers starting about 1871 on their cartridge revolvers (their earlier production all being percussion.) Most of these had brass frames, although some were made with iron, and were made in the following rimfire calibers: .22 with 7 shot cylinder and 3.25" barrel known as the Model 1; the Model 1 « was .32 rimfire with 3.5" barrel (about 15,000 made). The model 2 was also .32 rimfire, six shots, with a 5 inch octagon barrel, and about 2,000 were made of this model. Flayderman's Guide lists these at US$100 in NRA antique very good and $225 in excellent condition. The Model 2 « was in .38 rimfire with 1.5" or 3" barrels. I suspect your barrel is the 5" model, if you include the full length, not just the part sticking forward of the frame.
A total of about 30,000 of all variations were made circa 1871-1879, and these were basically the sort of thing that prudent men or women carried discreetly in their pockets or purses, or kept near their bed for defense against criminals. With the victim disarmament frenzy underway in England (and to only a slightly lesser extent in the US) most handguns are being confiscated. Violent crime is rising in England since this latest episode of lunacy. John Spangler
# 2927 - Howard Revolver 7/1/00 Chris, MALTA
Howard - Revolver - .38 - 6 inches - Blue - unknown -
Plastic Grips I have been offered this gun but I could not find any information. The owner claims that it is made in the U.S. Can you please advise as to whether this is true, who are the manufacturers and the approximate current value? Best Regards, Chris AgiusMALTAP.S. Sorry but I forgot to check the serial number.
Answer: Chris, my references tell me that Howard Arms Co. was a Trade name used by the Meriden Firearms Company of Meriden, Conn., U.S.A. The Meriden Firearms Company operated roughly between 1895 and 1915 and sold a line of low quality "suicide special" type revolvers under various the trade names. There is a good possibility that an inexpensive old revolver like this is unsafe, it should be checked by a competent gunsmith before firing. This type of firearm falls into the category of "old guns" that no one seems to be interested in as shooters, but collectors do not want them either. If you decide to purchase, values are in the $25 range. Marc
# 2991 - M1 Manufacture Date 7/1/00 Troy
CAI - M1 Garand - 30-06 - 02224 -
I have a M1 Garand and I was wondering what the manufacturing date of it was. The serial number is M1 02224 made by C.A.I. in St. Albans VT . Your help with this would be greatly appreciated . Thank you.
Answer: Troy- If the markings are on the left side of the receiver, it is one of the rifles assembled from "parts kits" using newly made receivers. The receiver is less than one year old, while the other parts may vary in age up to 60 years old. In my opinion these rifles have little collector interest or value, but are probably worth about what they are selling for as shooters so the "good" original rifles can be saved for collectors to enjoy. John Spangler
# 2992 - Markings On Military Items 7/1/00 Gus
On the Tubaeuph (Tuba and Euphonium) mailing list someone posted that on eBay an old tuba is for sale that has the marking USQMD. Can you give me a small list of military abbreviations that might be found on military musical instruments, and what the abbreviations stand for and approximately when those abbreviations were used. I would like to share it with that list.
Answer: Gus- Sorry, we do not have such a list. There is a book of over a hundred pages entitled "DICNAVAB" Dictionary of Naval Abbreviations. That only covers the Navy and if current as of the 1970s. Over the years the armed forces have used a bewildering mix of markings and abbreviations. They are best understood and deciphered in context of the artifact that they are found on.
USQMD is often found on items procured by the U.S. [Army] Quartermaster Department. In the Army scheme of things the Ordnance Department buys small arms, artillery, bombs, and vehicles, and has their own pet symbols and markings. The Quartermaster Department purchases all camp and field items (uniforms, tents, towels, toothpaste, and tubas, etc). Depending on the size or frequency of purchases, markings may be individually hand stamped, or neatly stamped as part of routine commercial marking process, or maybe not marked with any military marks at all. Prior to the 1920s it is common to find two or three initials stamped near military markings to indicate the inspector responsible for accepting the item as meeting the contract requirements.
Old Quartermaster catalogs or supply listings and lists of items allowed to different types of organizations would provide information on types of instruments used by US military units at various times.
I know there are a number of people with serious interest in military music and musical instruments, but I believe they are mainly interested in the pre-20th century era, especially the Civil War and Revolutionary War. Many "reenactment" groups have musicians associated with them. Some with an impressive range of historical information and musical talent, others rank amateurs.
All US military bandsmen get their initial training at the Armed Forces School of Music at the Naval Amphibious Base, Little Creek [Norfolk], Virginia. John Spangler