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

 

 

Questions And Answers Page

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

Return to Collectors Headquarters.

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

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


# 2192 - .38 "Bulldog"
7/31/99
CM

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Unknown Unknown .38 Unknown Unknown Unknown

I was at an estate sale a few days ago and noticed a .38 caliber snub nosed police special revolver (circa 1968 by their dating). Five rounds only. Have you ever heard of such a thing?

Answer:
CM- I believe this gun was one made by Charter Arms Co, which used the "Bulldog" name in the late 20th century.. "Bulldog" had been used by many different makers in the late 19th and early 20th century, but usually on low quality, low cost guns. Charter Arms guns were reasonably well made and moderately priced. I believe that "Son of Sam" used one in .44 caliber. You will be hearing a lot about that evil person as his misdeeds are glorified in a new movie. Of course, that will probably herd some more sheeple into the "ban more guns" opinion instead of my "fry more murderers" attitude. John Spangler


# 2243 - What's This Worth?
7/31/99
Thomas

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown

i want to find out how much a gun is. it is a 1936 or 1938 german luger.it has the numger 38 printed on it. i went for an appraisal about 13 to 15 years ago and a guy oferred 3,00 dollars cash for it right away. how much is it worth now?

Answer:
Sorry, but our crystal ball is not working today. Your question is like asking, "I have a car what is it worth"? You did not specify weather the car is a Rambler or a Lincoln, if the body is all rusted out or if the car is in perfect original condition. More information is needed to determine a value. Who manufactured your Luger (DWM, Erfurt, Mauser, Kreighoff, other)? What caliber is your Luger? What markings does your Luger have? Are all of the numbers matching? What kind of condition is the Luger in? What is the barrel length? Were you offered $300 or $3000 dollars? To be worth $3000 (15 years ago or even today), your Luger would have to be a rare variation. Marc


# 2172 - Double Barrel Percussion Shotgun
7/31/99
micxie

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown

I have an antique double barrel percussion shotgun that I would like to know its rarity and value I hope you can help me on the top rib is faintly stamped manton London it has engraved hammers, locks, top of breach and rear top of rib. Barrel proof marks are crossed sabers with a crown on top and the letters b.P.C .Under this proof mark is another crossed sabers with a crown on top and a v on the bottom .Each barrel has these proof marks. Over all the gun is in excellent working condition and all original parts. The barrel lengths are 37 inches and the bore is 13/16 of an inch. It has the stock cracked at the breach end, left barrel percussion nipple is broken, nosecone piece is broken, right side hammer screw is broken, and the top butt screw is missing. It has about 75% of the original finish. [no rust] thank you very much for your time and help.

Answer:
micxie - It sounds like you have a genuine English made Manton, not one of the Belgian copies hoping to capitalize on his fame. Unfortunately the condition does not sound all that spectacular, so the value will be modest. If the barrels are sound, a muzzle loading shooter may be interested in this, but we have not detected much collector interest in percussion doubles. I would estimate the value to be in the $150-350 range depending on quality and condition. For comparison, I saw a magnificent cased example, with spare nipples, screwdrivers, etc, probably unfired, in 16 GA for about $1600 that didn't sell. Although it was a couple of years ago. John Spangler


# 2190 - Colt Belt Buckle - WWI
7/27/99
Carl

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown

Greetings, I have a brass belt buckle with a raised picture of a Colt pistol on it with the words" Manufactured by Colt Firearms Made from cartridge brass from 1919 1918 world war". I have been unable to find out anything about it locally at any of the gun shows or anywhere. It has been in my family for years and if you know anything or where information may be obtained as to date and value I would sure appreciate it.

Answer:
Carl- I must admit that I have never heard of this item. However, I have heard of various other souvenir/memorabilia items being made from captured stuff after the end of WW1 (and by other countries at various times as well). I suspect it is authentic, and probably would be of interest to Colt collectors obsessed with getting one of everything related to Colts. There is a Colt Collectors Association, but they are not on line. As a wild GUESS as to value, I would probably start by asking $250, but it may actually be worth quite a bit less. Sounds neat anyway. John Spangler


# 2174 - J. Golcher Side by Side
7/27/99
James

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
J. Golcher Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown

We have a double barrel long gun with overall length of 48 inches. The barrels are round; there are two triggers. The imprinting on the top of the barrel says Fine Twist.

Answer:
James - Golcher is best known as a maker of "plain" or "plains" rifles circa 1865-1890. These were inexpensive muzzle loading rifles, most often in relatively small calibers. "Fine twist" is a term associated with shotgun barrels, so I assume you have a shotgun. This would not be a gun in great demand by collectors, or worth a whole lot. My guess is that about $100-150 would probably be a fair price unless in exceptional condition. We will pass on it, but do appreciate your offering it to us. John Spangler


# 2170 - Old Knife
7/27/99
David

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown

I've got a knife that is double edged, and is about 6'' long. It's holder appears to be a brass bullet or shell with the open end flared like a trumpet the knife screws into the holder the handle is wood. there is what looks like a bolt loop made of brass on the side of the holder. The diameter of the holder is about 2''. there is no markings on the knife or holder . If you can tell me anything about this knife I would app. It

Answer:
David - This sounds like a knife made in the field, or at a base, or aboard ship. I have seen a number of different examples of this sort of thing. They do not seem to have a lot of collector interest, and most people think of them as "trench art" use of shell casings rather than as serious weapons. In my opinion the values run in the $10-50 range depending on nationality, quality of workmanship and condition. John Spangler


# 2195 - Private Ryan Sniper Rifle
7/24/99
Jason

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Remington 1903a 30-06 Unknown Unknown Unknown

I have a Remington 1903a (30-06). When I received the gun, I got it right from the original shipping crate. It is in mint condition and is complete all original. Believe it or not, it had never been fired until I shot it. Anyways, on to my question. I am looking for an old snipers scope. If you have ever seen the movie "Saving Private Ryan" you would know what I am talking about. It was a scope with a separate lens attachment which extended the scope to the end of the barrel. I would also prefer it to be an authentic one. I know this is quite allot to ask, but if you happen to know the where abouts of one, I would appreciate any information you could give me. Thanks for you time.

Answer:
Dear Jason, You, sir, are an IDIOT!. In my book anyone who takes an unfired gun and shoots it is only slightly above the level of child molesters and people who mistreat animals. Not a heck of a lot better than Bill Clinton and Sarah Brady either. Not only are you an idiot, you are gullible. You have fallen victim to the gross error in weaponry in Saving Private Ryan, which is otherwise a very commendable film. This fancy scope was a theatrical prop, good for drama but without any basis in fact. The rifle used, supposedly a M1903A4 sniper rifle was only issued with one scope during WW2- the Weaver 330C, under the military designation of Telescope M73B1. This has a 3/4 inch diameter tube and is about 11 inches long. The Marine Corps did use an 8-power Unertl target scope on some sniper rifles in WW2, but these were based on the M1903A1 National Match rifle, not the 1903A3 or 1903A4. Apparently the film makers tried to combine the two for dramatic effect. To make matters worse, your recently deflowered rifle will have to be subjected to further ravishment and indignities such as drilling holes in it to mount a scope. We cannot endorse such atrocious crimes and urge you to repent and reform your loathsome ways immediately. Unfortunately, you are not the only one deluded by Hollywood. Their prodigious stream of effluent stinking of anti-gun and anti-military bias is one of the biggest obstacles to preserving traditional American values and basic Constitutional rights. I have never been noted for tactfulness, so please don't take this personally. I have a low tolerance for people who exhibit behavior I dislike. Guess you qualified. John Spangler


# 2232 - I Still Want To Desecrate My '03A3
7/24/99
Jason

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown

I had e-mailed you in the hopes that you might be able to tell me the location of the scope that I wanted. Instead, you and every one else has really been ignorant (sorry for the bluntness). I was merely trying to find out the where abouts of this particular scope. Most everyone I have asked has been very rude. You were the most helpful and I appreciate that. I decided to mail you once more to see if you might reconsider telling me where to find one of these scopes at. If not, could you mail me back telling me no. I would appreciate all you might be able to do for me. Thanks again. Jason

Answer:
Jason- The scope in the movie is something someone in Hollywood stuck on the rifle for the movie. I have no idea what they used, but it was not anything in the U.S. military inventory ever issued with the M1903A4 rifle. If you see something that makes you happy, go ahead and get it, but I have no idea what it might be. Sorry. If you can figure out what it is, you are welcome to post it on our free "wanted" page. John Spangler


# 2201 - 1903 Date Of Manufacture
7/24/99
Larry, Flower Mound, Texas, USA

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
1903 Springfield .30-06 24" Parkerized 620,951

S.A. barrel dated 12/15 When was the gun made?

Answer:
Larry, you must have missed our "When was your US Military firearm made?" link, it is located near the bottom of the Antique and Collectable Firearms and Militaria Headquarters main page and allows visitors to check manufacture dates for 22 different models of US Military firearms. We also have a "When was your Winchester made?" section where you can check the date of manufacture of 70 different models of Winchester firearms. I entered your serial number and found that the date of manufacture for Springfield rifle model 1903 serial number 620951 is 1916. Marc


# 2189 - Marlin Model 375
7/20/99

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Marlin 375 375 Unknown Unknown Unknown

I am looking for information on the history of the Marlin 375 long rifle. Any help would be appreciated. Cannot find any information on this rifle. Dealers have argued with me that Marlin did not make this caliber. I know better because I have one. Thanks

Answer:
Sir, The Marlin Model 375 was introduced in 1980, the design was based on the Model 1895 and came with a 20 inch microgroove barrel, 5 shot tubular magazine, folding semi Buckhorn rear sight and ramp front sight. The stock was American black walnut with a fluted comb and full pistol grip. Overall length was about 38.5 inches and weight was about 6.75 pounds. The .375 cartridge did not catch on with sportsmen, probably because only Marlin and Winchester were manufacturing rifles chambered in for it, and so ammunition was sometimes difficult to obtain. Due to lack of popularity Marlin ceased production of the Model 375 around 1983-84 after manufacturing only 16,315 rifles. Suggested retail for the Model 375 at it's introduction in 1980 was $210.95, and in 1983 at the end of production $283.95. Because of the small number of rifles produced, Marlin collectors now consider the Model 375 to be a Marlin collectible. Marc


# 2220 - Responsibility
7/20/99
Tyler

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Winchester Unknown 30-30 Unknown Unknown Unknown

Hi my name is Tyler and I was injured by a 30/30 rifle and I would like to know a bit more about a 30/30. Like if you have heard of any of them jamming while trying to unload or anything that would be useful.

Answer:
Tyler- I am sorry you got hurt. Any gun can cause injury if not handled properly. The first rule of gun safety it to keep a gun pointed in a safe direction. Also, read and follow the manufacturer's operating instructions. If you do not properly operate a mechanical device it may cause injuries. Thousands of people have gotten their thumb caught in the action of a M1 Garand rifle (myself included). I did something stupid and injury resulted. I have never blamed John C. Garand who designed the rifle, Springfield Armory who built it, the dealer who sold it, or the friend I borrowed it from. It was my fault. One of the things that our great country provides is freedom. That includes freedom to do stupid things. But there is also a huge obligation to accept that with freedom there is responsibility to accept the consequences of your own actions. I was stupid and I got hurt. If you got hurt, it is very likely not the fault of the designer, manufacturer or dealer who produced the gun you used. I know there are a lot of lawyers eager to feed their families and "help people recover what is owed to them" who seek to blame every event on people other than the ones who did something stupid. (They normally get a percentage of what is paid, and often companies pay a few thousand dollars instead of spending large amounts fighting claims in court. Apparently this is legal but in my opinion it is often a sleazy extortion scheme.) I imagine a few other people have hurt themselves with .30-30 rifles. Many more have been hurt falling over rocks or trees in the woods, or drowned in streams and lakes. Lawyers are probably trying to figure out how to sue God for making dangerous stuff like that. Every lawyer who works in a case like that should be required to prove that they can invent a better rock, tree, lake, or gun than already exists before they can file any suit. Hope you recover your health quickly and fully. But not any monetary damages. Next time do not do anything stupid. Most people learn from non-fatal mistakes- at least I did. John Spangler


# 2221 - Responsibility (part 2)
7/20/99
Tyler

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Winchester Unknown 30-30 Unknown Unknown Unknown

Dear john thanks for the reply I was also wondering on what the chances of a .30-30 bullet being accidentally discharged and bouncing off a rock and flying into my leg are. Have you heard of any incidents like that please tell me. Thanks Tyler 17y/old

Answer:
Tyler- I am not sure I understand your description of the incident. Accidental discharge usually refers to the gun firing when the trigger is pulled when the person did not really intend to shoot. If that is how the shot was fired, that is possible, and probably not uncommon. Once fired, the bullet can definitely ricochet off a rock (or more likely hit the rock which will result in the bullet breaking into smaller pieces and those, along with pieces of rock will fly off to hit anything nearby. If you are asking about a loaded cartridge being ejected from the gun, hitting a rock, then the cartridge going off, that is a different situation. It takes a lot of force to dent a primer enough to make it go off, and dropping it on a rock will not do it. Even if it did, the bullet will not go more than a few feet from a cartridge that has the powder ignited when it is not in the barrel of a gun. The pressure usually just ruptures the case and the bullet will drop to the ground. (tests have shown that the fragments of the case or the bullet, or the primer will not penetrate a cardboard box 6-12 inches away in situations like this.) All these are accidents that should never happen if people are careful and follow standard safe gun handling procedures. Hope this helps. John Spangler


# 2188 - High Standard HD Military
7/17/99
Michael

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
High Standard H-D Military 22 Unknown Unknown 158413

My great uncle just gave me a High Standard 22 automatic pistol. The model is written as H-D Military and there is no patent date stamped on the pistol. The serial number is 158413 if I have the right number. That number is stamped below the trigger guard on the grip. I can find no other numbers except what appears to be a hand engraved number on the side of the magazine well. That number is 1478442. Strange but this number is also engraved on another of the three pistols he gave me. It is a colt .38 service revolver heavy barrel model, patent date of 1928. My uncle got these two along with a colt woodsman, sn MT1148 with elephant ear grip, from his brother in-law when he died several years ago. I am told that the man was a comp. target shooter years ago. Any info you have on the high standard would be helpful.

Answer:
Michael, The High Standard company was started in 1926, to manufacture gun barrel drills. High Standard began manufacturing semi-auto pistols in about 1932 after they acquired the tools and equipment of the bankrupt Hartford Arms & Equipment Co. Hi Standard's first semi-auto pistol was the Model A. The Model A was an internal hammer design, chambered in .22LR, it had a fixed barrel and a short slide with adjustable rear sights, magazine capacity was ten rounds. The Hi Standard Model B was the same design as the Model A, but had fixed rather than adjustable rear sights. The Model C was a Model B chambered for the .22 Short cartridges, and the Model D was a heavy barrel version of the Model A. In 1940, the Model HD was introduced, the Model HD was based on the Model D but it used an external hammer (hence the 'H' designator). In l943 the U.S. Army issued a contract for the production of the Model HD in slightly modified form as the USA-HD. After WWII Hi Standard continued to produce the USA-HD until 1951 under the civilian title of Model HD-Military. The year of manufacture for your HD Military pistol serial number 158413 is 1946. You may be interested to know that the year of manufacture for your Colt Woodsman serial number MT1148 is 1938. Marc


# 2169 - Colt Paterson
7/17/99
Todd

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown

I am looking for a replica 1832 (1835?) Colt Paterson Revolver; Texas Paterson; or any revolver REPLICA 1840 or earlier. Can you help? Would also like information relating to revolvers, and handguns in general from the period 1800 to 1840. I have been told that Derringer made a revolver prior to 1840?

Answer:
Todd - There have been copies of Paterson Colts made by several makers (mostly difference brands by the Italians who make most of the Colt copies) in recent years. Dixie Gun Works (see links page) probably has some, but quality of their stuff is often not to my liking, many people seem happy. In my opinion, the best source of info on various early revolvers would be a copy of Flayderman's Guide to Antique American Firearms and their Values. These run about $30-35 and are well worth it. If you do not want to buy a copy, your library can get one on interlibrary loan. That is the only book that I know of that will give you good accurate info and photos of most of the different makers of the early period. Good luck. John Spangler


# 2168 - USMC Dress Sword
7/17/99
Guy

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown

Dear Sir, Looking for USMC Dress Sword that appears on TV ads The Few, The Proud, The Marines..... If you handle this or know of someone who does could you let me know, thanks, Guy

Answer:
Guy - We do not handle these, but they are not hard to find brand new (usually made in Spain or Germany). I think US Cavalry and other outfits that cater to military buyers would have them. You are also welcome to post this on our free "wanted" page. Your friendly Marine Corps recruiter will be glad to arrange for you to be able to buy one from the PX at the end of your training. Hope you like short haircuts. John Spangler, Captain, USN (retired) "The Marines will tell you of their many victories, but they will never tell you how they got there." (Observation by a senior officer in a foreign Navy.)


# 2167 - Bayonet Identification
7/13/99
Christopher

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown

I have a Bayonet with scabbard in a leather case that I received from my grandfather who said his grandfather said it was from the Civil War. Please help me identify it and see what it is worth. The blade measures 21" with the inscriptions on the face of the tri-edged blade as follows: closest to the top of it is some un-identifiable marks. On top of those is the letter E and on top of that 27, then on top of the 27 10' 00, the some more unidentifiable marks and a symbol that looks like this ^. On the top of the leather case is the letters WD with the symbol ^ and under that what looks to be a crown with an E under that and what looks to be a 31 under that. Also on the bottom of the leather/suede case is WD with the ^ symbol above it. It also has a locking mechanism with a screw holding it on and a hook that looks to be for clipping on to the pants. Please help.

Answer:
Christopher - Your bayonet was made in England as a Model 1876 or 1895, with the only big difference being the size of the hole in the socket to fit over the barrel. These are somewhat longer and have a different socket diameter than the 1853 model used in the Civil War, but many people get them confused. The markings of a crown / E / [number] are inspector marks. The crown indicating British government, the letter indicating the location of the inspector (E= England; A= North America; F= France; L= Liege Belgium were all used at various times over the years by inspectors.) The 10' 00 is a "stores" date indicating it was overhauled or placed in storage in October 1900. The upside down "V" mark is a "broad arrow" used to indicate something is government property. When sold, a second broad arrow is stamped point to point to show it has been sold, not stolen. The hook on the side of the leather scabbard is to hold it in place in a leather "frog" or loop type arrangement to attach it to the belt. Value on these is usually in the $65-125 range depending on condition and exact model. John Spangler


# 2166 - M1903 Springfield Value
7/13/99
Frank

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Springfield 1903 Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown

Hi I have a 1903 Springfield Military rifle in perfect shape. Stock has been refinished 40 years ago when I bought it. Gun dealer head spaced & test fired it but I never did. Only clean up & return to gun case about once or twice a year. What is it worth? Frank Primeau

Answer:
Frank - Sounds like a nice rifle. The refinished stock hurts the value somewhat- not too badly if just gently cleaned, but quite a bit if heavily sanded, all inspector marks removed, and given inappropriate finish. Guns in "perfect shape" may have great bore and 100% finish and meet military desire for like new gun. Collectors will clearly distinguish between one that is all correct original and matching as when it originally left the armory and one that has a replaced barrel and was refinished and had miscellaneous parts replaced. The type of stock, sights, serial number and barrel date all enter into figuring the value. An arsenal overhauled low number Rock Island M1903 with replaced barrel and stock may be worth a lot less than $300. A pre-1917 Springfield with all matching parts and all original arsenal blue finish, but refinished stock may be closer to $1000. A M1903A3 with refinished stock is probably more like $450. Hope you can understand why we ask for such a wide variety of information when people have questions about guns. Without the important details, we may provide a correct answer to a question that isn't really about what we thought it was. We strongly encourage people to purchase and use value guides such as Flayderman's Guide to Antique American Firearms and Their Values; The Blue Book of Gun Values; and The Standard Catalog of Firearms. Remember that the values given by us or in any price guide are all estimates, and the only true way to find the value of any item is to put it on the market and see what someone will really pay. John Spangler


# 2159 - Rohm GmbH Of Sontheim/Brenz
7/13/99
Alethea, Turbeville, SC, USA

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
ROHM GMBH Sontheim/Branz 22 Short 3.5 Inches Including Cylinder Unknown 801416

There are two places where it looks like an eagle with a Z beside it. One is on the barrel and the other is in front of the cylinder. It also has made in Germany on the barrel and just Germany on the cylinder.RG10 in on the handle. It also has another marking of which I cannot recognize beside the number 64. This pistol was left to me by my grandfather and I would like to get any information available about it. This is to be included in a family genealogy that I am doing for my family. Thanks for your help.

Answer:
Alethea, Rohm GmbH of Sontheim/Brenz produced cheap revolvers, starting pistols, gas pistols and alarm pistols for sale in U.S. prior to the gun control act of 1968 when restrictions on handgun dimensions severely curtailed importation. There is little demand for Rohm firearms, values fall in the $20.00 range. Marc


# 2151 - Luftwaffe Use Of The Walther PP In .22 Caliber
7/10/99
peter, Belgium

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Walther PP .22 Unknown Blue 9644XX

An N with a crown above it stamped on the barrel manufacturer is Walther, but still in Zella-Mehlis (Th FCr), pre-war? What was the original usage of this weapon ? I was told these weapons were used by the Luftwaffe for practicing purposes.

Answer:
Peter, Whittington's book "German Pistols and Holsters 1934 -1945 Volume II" states that only one Walther PP in 22 caliber with German WWII military acceptance stamps is known to exist. This German military PP is serial number 990802, acceptance stamps " WaA293" are located on the slide barrel and frame. Whittington's theory is that this PP may have been part of a small quantity of 22 caliber PP pistols procured for trials- testing, training or some other special purpose. I can find no specific record of any Walther PP pistols in .22 caliber being procured for training purposes by the Luftwaffe. If your Walther was procured by the German Luftwaffe, it is a rare and probably quite valuable pistol but it should have German military acceptance stamps. Marc


# 2165 - M1 Carbine Ranger Training Rifle
7/10/99
Waverly

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Ranger Unknown 22 Unknown Unknown Unknown

Hello and thanks for the service you offer!!!! I have a ranger WW II Training Rifle It is a 53-60. It is the exact size and weight as the carbine, but is a 22 cal. It was as I'm sure you know used for training the troops. The barrel looks ridiculous, with the small 22 bore in such a large barrel.. It is in excellent shape, but I don't know what it is worth. Thanks for any assistance.

Answer:
Waverly - As far as I have been able to determine, there were NO .22 caliber versions of the M1 carbine ever used for training by the US military during WW2 or later. Ranger is one of several "house brands" used by Sears Roebuck for various guns made for them by various makers. I suspect that this may be what you have. However, maybe this is just one of many things I have not yet learned as much as I need to about. I cannot tell you anything useful about the value since I am not certain what you have. Wish we could do better for you. John Spangler


# 2164 - Sedgley Rifle
7/10/99
Polkasatla

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Sedgley 44 30-06 Unknown Unknown Unknown

I need info on a rifle I have it was made by R.F. Sedgley inc. Phila. Pa. Model 44 30-06

Answer:
Polkasatla - We cannot tell you much about your rifle without examining it closely. Sedgley was involved with various gun making projects ranging Marine Corps to assembling very low quality guns from odds and ends of spare parts, filling in with pot metal castings of non-critical parts they were short of. I suspect your rifle is one of the M1903 variations, perhaps a nice sporter, perhaps a low grade M1903 service rifles style piece intended for use by industrial plant guards during WW2 or the like. John Spangler


# 2140 - Warner Arms Corporation
7/6/99
Rick, Wilmington, NC, USA

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Warner Arms Corp Hand Pistol ? 4" Black Steel ?

On Grip: Blocks, The Sear I am looking for any info on this pistol. Thanks

Answer:
Rick, the Warner Arms Corporation was started about 1912, they purchased the rights to an automatic pistol patented in 1913 by Andrew Fyrberg who had patented a number of revolver innovations, most of which were taken up by the Iver Johnson Corporation. The Fyrberg pistol was marketed as the Infallible, it was a .32 ACP blowback design that used a reciprocating bolt in a fixed receiver. The Infallible was an ungainly, awkward to handle pistol that was delicate and not too reliable, it failed to achieve much popularity, and it is doubtful if more than about 7,000 were manufactured. Warmer Arms also manufactured a hinged-frame, five-shot .32 caliber double action revolver with ribbed barrel that was almost indistinguishable from contemporary models made by Maltby & Henly, Foehl & Weeks, Meriden, Iver Johnson and scores of others. In 1917, Warmer Arms merged with another company to become the Davis-Warner Arms Company and in 1919, Davis-Warner went into liquidation. Marc


# 2163 - Mills WWI Medical Belt
7/6/99
Richard

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown

I don't know if you're in the habit of helping with identification, but since you had several ammunition and medical belts for sale, perhaps you could help. I inherited my Grandfather's World War I military items, one of which is a ammunition or medical belt. He was a doctor in the Medical Corps and served oversea, but mostly after the Armistice. Anyway, the belt is a Mills-made (May, 1918) item with four pockets: one on each side is the usual size of pouch, but the other is a larger size (about 2-1/2 times wider) and has two eagle-stamped buttons. There is a regular-sized pouch and a larger sized pouch on each side, total of 4 in all. Could you help me identify this belt and give me a "rough" idea of what is worth (it is in very good shape, no fraying or holes -- a couple of dirt marks on back of belt -- my Grandfather's initials [HHS] written next to the Mills insignia. I realize this is sight-unseen and I'm more interested in what type of belt it might be -- it is a keepsake, so selling it is not a major option.

Answer:
Richard - You have the Model 1910 or 1912 Medical Officer's belt. There was a later Model 1917 identical except for use of lift the dot type snaps instead of the eagle snaps. The large pocket on the wearer's left side held a pad with diagnosis/treatment forms that would be used to record the info and one copy stayed with the doctor, the other was tied to the patient's uniform. In addition the pocket held a small set of field surgical instruments (scissors, scalpels, probe, forceps, etc). The small pocket on the left contained an aluminum case holding a metal syringe, several needles, and six ampoules of morphine. The small pocket on the right was for a flask of alcohol for sterilizing things. The larger packet on the right had an aluminum carrier which held five Bakelite containers of medicines. R. Stepehen Dorsey's U.S. Martial Web Belts and Bandoleers: 1903-1981 is the source of this info, and he shows some excellent photos of the belt and contents. (All his books are excellent and highly recommended.) I believe the Company of Military Historians had an article on this item a number of years ago. Hope you can pass this down in the family for generations to come. Make sure you write down as much as you can about the owner and store the info with the belt. John Spangler


# 2162 - Ranger Rifle
7/6/99
Melanie

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Ranger Unknown 22 Unknown Unknown Unknown

I have searched for months trying to locate information on the Ranger rifle, unfortunately I've been unable to find anything. its like they were never made. I am searching for the Ranger rifle 22 long model 34 A clip fed. If you have any info as to where I might go please email me , any help would be greatly appreciated. I've been in libraries, talked to gun collectors, and I'm at a brick wall with this rifle. Thank you for your time please help if you can. Melanie

Answer:
Melanie- The Gun Parts Corp. catalog has a neat listing in the front that converts many of the "store brands" to the original maker. The Ranger brand was sold by Sears, Roebuck & Co. The model 34A was made by Marlin and under the Marlin label could have been designated model 80, C, 780, or 50-50E. These were probably circa 1920-1950, but I cannot confirm that without a lot more research than I have time for right now. Hope this helps. John Spangler


# 2136 - Melior .25 Auto
7/3/99
Andrew, Jefferson, LA, USA

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Melior Unknown .25 Auto 2 Inches Blued 259178-265491

Barrel is marked with "*" over a capitol "R", a symbol that appears to be a standing lion over the letters "PV", and a crown over an oval with the letters that appear to be "ELG". Right now I almost nothing about this pistol. As the story goes, my Uncle stormed the beaches at Normandy and was stationed in France for some time. I was told by my Mother that this gun was brought home as a war trophy. Other than the fact that the gun is stamped "Belgium", was this gun around and possibly used in WWII? Any information on the history of this gun that you can provide would be of great help.

Answer:
Andrew, the Melior .25 caliber semi auto pistol was manufactured by Robar Manufacture Lie'goise d' Armes 'a Feu robar et Cie Li'ege, Belgium from about 1920 until the company went out of business in the late 1950's. The Melior was a good quality pistol and a fairly popular design, it appears to have sold steadily being exported all over the world from it's introduction right up to the time when Robar closed it's doors. The Melior .25 Auto was not used officially by any military organization but your pistol could have been purchased privately for use as a self defense weapon. Pistols stamped "Belgium" were usually exported for sale in the U.S. Marc


# 2119 - Massachusetts Arms Co. Revolvers
7/3/99
Howard, Menlo Park, CA, USA

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Massachusetts Arms Revolver About 7 Mm About 2.5 Inches Unknown 245

"Maynard's Patent" "Sep.22.1845" and "Patent Jan.2.1845" Looking for any information. This has been in my family since the Civil War. Originally one of a pair I'm told.

Answer:
Howard- If you have one or a pair of these with neat family history, then you really have something exciting. Of course, they are sort of goofy looking by today's design standards. These were made in .28 and .31 caliber and 7mm is about .28 so that probably confirms the caliber. The second patent date should be 1855, but may be hard to read. These had either 2.5 or 3 inch barrels, and were made circa 1855-1860. Total production was only about 2,500-3,000 total which included both your model and an earlier version with only the one 1845 patent date. Most of the earlier ones had no means to automatically turn the cylinder, while the later version was made so that the cylinder would turn when the hammer was cocked. The Maynard patent refers to the door on the side that opens up so you can install something like a roll of caps for a kid's cap gun. These allowed firing the pistol without having to mess around with individual percussion caps on each chamber of the cylinder. The Maynard tape primer was used on a wide variety of other arms circa 1845-1860 including some Sharps carbines, U.S. military rifles pistols and carbines, and a few others. Flayderman's Guide has a little information on these, and Sellers & Smith's "American Percussion Revolvers" will tell you even more. John Spangler


# 2116 - M1903 Springfield Low Number
7/3/99
Eric

Maker Model Caliber Barrel Length Finish Serial Number
Springfield 1903 30-06 Unknown Unknown Unknown

On your website I noticed you guys list 03 and 03A3 parts. I have a non original 03 with a low serial# on the receiver, it is stamped from the Rock Island Arsenal Model 1903 (S/N)227071. I have heard these low number receivers are, or can be unsafe to shoot. I would like to scope the rifle but don't want to worry about the receiver failing while hunting. Does this heat treating problem exist with all low # receivers or just certain manufacturers?

Answer:
Eric- M1903 Springfield Rifles made before mid 1918 are called "low numbers" and had different steel/heat treatment than later production. This applies to all Springfield M1903 rifles under serial number 800,000 and all made by Rock Island under serial number 285507. The heat treatment sometimes left the steel very brittle and it can shatter. There is no way to re-heat treat these, and no way of checking to see if they are brittle. (Well, technically, there is a way. Grab onto the barrel with a big vise. Take a big hammer and smack the receiver real hard. If it breaks it is no good. If it does not break and is only dented, it was not bad before, but probably is not much good now.) Army Ordnance withdrew the "low number" receivers from service prior to WW2, and for many years the old Director of Civilian Marksmanship program would replace low number receivers with later ones. The Marine Corps never withdrew the low numbers from service. I do not recall large numbers of Marines with injured heads from exploding rifles. (Thicker skulls than Army guys?) Some people still shoot low number rifles with GI ammunition. I am one, but my lawyer says as long as he is paid up he does not care, but says I should tell other people not to do it, since his BMW is paid off and he doesn't need any more work. "Hatcher's Notebook" by Brig. Gen. Jullian S. Hatcher is loaded with fascinating info on U.S. small arms stuff. He has an extensive section on low number receiver problems. He also describes a related problem of some very poor WW1 ammunition made by National Copper and Brass (headstamp NC and date 18) and several cases where (really dumb) GIs fired 8mm Mauser ammo in their Springfields, creating dangerous overpressures as the 8mm bullet tried to squeeze through the 7.62mm bore. With my historian hat on, I think that the "low number" dangers are a semi-bad rap probably due as much to ammo problems as to the receivers themselves. Old M1903 rifles in original configuration should be retired to collector duty. I would not waste the money to make a sporter out of one. There are plenty of already butchered M1903 high number rifles to choose from. Or, for about the same money, go get a nice Ruger 77, Remington 700, or Winchester Model 70 ready for a scope, in the caliber of your choice, with a pretty stock and much better resale potential. Hope this helps. John Spangler


Return to Collectors Headquarters.