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  1. #1
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    Default Type 38 rifle and slings, some rookie questions...

    Hey guys,

    Ordered "Military Rifles of Japan" a coupla' nights ago. Not here yet. Have read what there is on the Banzai sticky about Type 38 rifles. And searched for old threads on this model rifle and didn't turn up much. Also searched the internet for articles and again just basic stuff. Understand the series, arsenal markings, serial numbers and assembly numbering things, but have a few other questions.

    Not a rookie firearms collector but am with Japanese small arms cept' the 44 carbine. Have that down thanks to men here and info on the net and Banzai.

    Of the very few Type 38 rifles I found for sale or offered at auction on the Inet, most are understandingly beat, dark wood and or messed with. Is a nice not necessarily matching, original Type 38 long rifle scarce? As in good bluing, dinged a bit solid wood with original finish, and nice bore. Also cleanin' rod.

    Lancebear

  2. #2
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    Not really, nice T 38s are pretty easy to find, JMHO. Cleaning rods are all over.
    03man - Don Voigt
    Author of "The Japanese T99 Arisaka Rifle" 2010 edition
    Co-author of "The Knee Mortars of Japan 1921-1945" 2011 edition
    Near Charlotte, NC

  3. #3
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    Thanks 03man,

    I won't spend too much.

    LB

  4. #4
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    Study the online auctions for a few weeks, you will get a good feel for what is out there. Be patient.
    03man - Don Voigt
    Author of "The Japanese T99 Arisaka Rifle" 2010 edition
    Co-author of "The Knee Mortars of Japan 1921-1945" 2011 edition
    Near Charlotte, NC

  5. #5
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    Sage advice 03,

    Hope to surprise you and me in a coupla' weeks, already in on one. Not expensive but maybe interesting.

    LB

  6. #6
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    03,

    Just one more. Do early T38's not have a front sight protector, just a blade sight?

    LB

  7. #7
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    I can answer that one. All the early "no series" rifles have the blade front sight without guards. The guards showed up in the middle of the 20th series (first Kokura series group made).

    John in Charlotte, NC
    Adapt and Overcome

  8. #8
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    With more than 2 million made of the Tokyo no-series T-38, a nice matching example with mum is very hard to find. It took me almost 40 years of collecting to find this one and quite a $$ battle on an auction site to win it. (I like posting photos of this just to tease Edokko )
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 10-28-06 098.jpg   IMG_0045.JPG   IMG_0123.JPG   IMG_0042.JPG   IMG_0133.JPG  
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  9. #9
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    Always like seeing that rifle Rob. I have two matching no-series, one with a matching dust cover that my dad brought back. The other was thought to have a mismatched bolt and bayonet lug... which I was able to get fairly cheaply

    John in Charlotte, NC
    Adapt and Overcome

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by JWMWITZ View Post
    Always like seeing that rifle Rob. I have two matching no-series, one with a matching dust cover that my dad brought back. The other was thought to have a mismatched bolt and bayonet lug... which I was able to get fairly cheaply

    John in Charlotte, NC
    I remember you posting that one your Dad brought back - priceless! My Dad said he left a T-38 on Saipan when he was shipped to Okinawa as it was too long. He brought back a T-99 from there & his cousin lost it. I'd give most anything to have that rifle. Funny thing is, I could have maybe owned it along the way at some point & not even known it
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by arisakadogs View Post
    I remember you posting that one your Dad brought back - priceless! My Dad said he left a T-38 on Saipan when he was shipped to Okinawa as it was too long. He brought back a T-99 from there & his cousin lost it. I'd give most anything to have that rifle. Funny thing is, I could have maybe owned it along the way at some point & not even known it
    You've got the next best thing, or maybe better-the picture of him holding a T 99 on Okinawa; the one in the T 99 book! No doubt that you got your Arisaka collecting "gene" naturally.
    03man - Don Voigt
    Author of "The Japanese T99 Arisaka Rifle" 2010 edition
    Co-author of "The Knee Mortars of Japan 1921-1945" 2011 edition
    Near Charlotte, NC

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by 03man View Post
    You've got the next best thing, or maybe better-the picture of him holding a T 99 on Okinawa; the one in the T 99 book! No doubt that you got your Arisaka collecting "gene" naturally.
    True enough Don, and he did buy me a Tokyo no-series T-38 for my first rifle back in the '60s. Funny thing was that it came with a Kokura T-97 sniper bolt in it There are two photos of him with that T-99. I don't think I've ever posted the second one.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails IMG_0068.JPG   IMG_1203.JPG  
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by JWMWITZ View Post
    I can answer that one. All the early "no series" rifles have the blade front sight without guards. The guards showed up in the middle of the 20th series (first Kokura series group made).

    John in Charlotte, NC
    Thanks John,

    Do you mean that ONLY no series and early Kokura 20th series T-38 rifles have the bare blade sight? I looked at the series chart on Castle Thunder. Here is what I figure, please correct me if wrong. If you see a T-38 rifle with the bare blade front sight, without knowing any other details, it will be a no series Tokyo, Nagoya, Mukden, Jinsen or early 20th series Kokura arsenal rifle. Is that right? Which is more desirable? Also were early T-38 rifle leather slings without a metal buckle?

    Lancebear

  14. #14
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    Lancebear,
    early rifles of all mfgs have no guards on the front sight; but later issues of all mfgs. do have sight guards, IIRC. Exactly where they changed, you will have to buy Frank Allan's T 38 book to see, it is well worth the $$, and you can buy if from the author.

    The T 38 carbines are exceptions, they all had sight guards; though the earlier ones are shaped differently from the later ones.

    All T 38 slings have a metal buckle; the sling was a carryover from the T 30.
    03man - Don Voigt
    Author of "The Japanese T99 Arisaka Rifle" 2010 edition
    Co-author of "The Knee Mortars of Japan 1921-1945" 2011 edition
    Near Charlotte, NC

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lancebear View Post
    Thanks John,

    Do you mean that ONLY no series and early Kokura 20th series T-38 rifles have the bare blade sight? I looked at the series chart on Castle Thunder. Here is what I figure, please correct me if wrong. If you see a T-38 rifle with the bare blade front sight, without knowing any other details, it will be a no series Tokyo, Nagoya, Mukden, Jinsen or early 20th series Kokura arsenal rifle. Is that right? Which is more desirable? Also were early T-38 rifle leather slings without a metal buckle?

    Lancebear
    Nope, only the no series Tokyo and the very scarce no series Nagoya (as well as the early 20th series Kokura) will be with the unguarded front sight.
    This is my no-series Nagoya
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Nagoya T-38s 020.jpg   Nagoya T-38s 029.jpg   Nagoya T-38s 024.jpg   Nagoya T-38s 019.jpg  
    Last edited by arisakadogs; 12-27-2010 at 09:18 AM.
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  16. #16
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    Thanks Arisaka,

    Well then, the rifle I am lookin' to purchase must one of the two you mention. Are the no series Tokyo arsenal rifles common, I know how condition, matching numbers and bore can affect value? Do original Tokyo no series rifles bring much, good condition, and with all the right stuff?

    Lancebear

  17. #17
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    Tokyo made over 2 million "no series" rifles; so they are the most common variety of T 38. Condition is everything and determines the price, regardless of the mfg.; though some varieties of T 38 are much scarcer in numbers than the Tokyo no series.

    Clear as mud, right.

    Just study the online auctions and you will get a better feel for what people ask, follow them till they close and see what they sell for.

    There is no quick, easy, or universal answer to your question on value. Buy one that "speaks" to you. But you would be better off to spend $69.95 on a book first, IMO.
    03man - Don Voigt
    Author of "The Japanese T99 Arisaka Rifle" 2010 edition
    Co-author of "The Knee Mortars of Japan 1921-1945" 2011 edition
    Near Charlotte, NC

  18. #18
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    03,

    "Military Rifles of Japan" is on the way. Rifle looks right as rain and the character speaks. Understand condition concerning firearms value, just not with Japanese small arms. Thanks for your interest and advice. Merry Christmas! Thread is done for me, thanks to all for the info. Will post photos if I win the rifle.

    LB

  19. #19
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    Okay, one more...won a T-38 on GB tonight. It's salty as Arisaka describes rifles like this. The receiver arsenal marking is described as Kokura. Number 1777331. Has the nekkid front sight blade and bolt shroud. Solid rifle that looks like an unmessed with bringback. Wood is dark but not dinked up. Upper band has a well done machined step on the top front

    LB

  20. #20
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    It is ok to post the link to a closed auction- then we can have a look.
    03man - Don Voigt
    Author of "The Japanese T99 Arisaka Rifle" 2010 edition
    Co-author of "The Knee Mortars of Japan 1921-1945" 2011 edition
    Near Charlotte, NC

  21. #21
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    Hey 03man,

    I can take the heat if I screwed up. No mention of matching numbers, ha, but the rifle appears to have character in spades. Complete but for rod. Think the rifle is described as a Kokura, but figure it is a no series Tokyo. I can live with a dark but strong bore if that is true. As rough as the rifle appears, it looks very solid and not messed with. If nothing is matching that's ok, I like the way the rifle looks, and the character looks to match throughout. It does have a mum and bolt protector. And an upper band that is described as unusual? Well, I rolled the dice and won it, nobody twisted my arm.

    Gunbroker 207273549. Interesting to read your comments.

    Lancebear

  22. #22
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    Lancebear,
    that's a pretty steep price for what you bought, sorry. The front band is wrong, may be from a carbine; I doubt it matches. Just chalk it up to the education account; as we all have many times.

    That serial number would have been made at Tokyo, just before the great earthquake of 1923; the machinery was moved later to Kokura.

    Now would be a good time to buy the T 38 book for yourself, a belated Christmas present!
    03man - Don Voigt
    Author of "The Japanese T99 Arisaka Rifle" 2010 edition
    Co-author of "The Knee Mortars of Japan 1921-1945" 2011 edition
    Near Charlotte, NC

  23. #23
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    03,

    Yea, maybe I payed too much for now, but I'm good. May have some redeeming surprises. Thanks for your comments.

    LB

  24. #24
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    03man,

    Read "Military Rifles of Japan" from cover to cover tonight. And studied the photographs. Especially the upper bands. The only upper band without legs and a stepped top that I noticed was on a "Test Type 1 Rifle".

    LB

  25. #25
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    That upper band is from a T-38 carbine
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  26. #26
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    Thanks Adogs,

    Happy New Year,

    LB

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lancebear View Post
    03man,

    Read "Military Rifles of Japan" from cover to cover tonight. And studied the photographs. Especially the upper bands. The only upper band without legs and a stepped top that I noticed was on a "Test Type 1 Rifle".

    LB
    The TT 1 is made from a T 38 carbine.
    03man - Don Voigt
    Author of "The Japanese T99 Arisaka Rifle" 2010 edition
    Co-author of "The Knee Mortars of Japan 1921-1945" 2011 edition
    Near Charlotte, NC

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