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Thread: Japanese Luger?

  1. #1
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    wink2 Japanese Luger?

    I ran across some interesting information this afternoon while combing some of the auction sites. One listing has a beautiful Luger that is described as being built for the Japanese to test for a military side arm = much like the US did. It is described as a 1906 Japanese Test Luger in 30 cal with a 6" barrel, with kanji marking for TG&E on the side of the receiver. Price at this time is in the $4000 range and estimated to go between 15-20,000 for it!!!!
    I have never seen anything about this item and so it really got my attention ===== learn something new every time I look around. I will not list the auction here, as it is ongoing at a prime auction house on the west coast.
    About as rare as a 45 cal Luger built for the US. Just some thing more to dream about!

  2. #2
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    It's a phony. Also the description is wrong, as this particular piece has no marking connecting it to TGE. The TGE marking is on the other phony Luger piece which is pictured on the Derby/Brown book. They are both make believe creations.

  3. #3
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    Well, it looks like it hammered at $10,000. One poor sucker out of 10 grands plus buyer's premium for a fantasy piece !

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    Thanks for the update on this piece!! It sure pays to post this stuff on the boards, for the help of those that are so much more knowledgeable. I'm sure he will be sorry that he doesn't ask questions before spending that amount of cash + premium (I think 15%!) WOW

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    Anyone that spends large amounts of $$$ on small amounts of research, deserves the outcome.

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    Maybe the buyer will be lucky enough to find another buyer just like himself when he gets around to selling it. He may never know he spent $9,950 too much on the thing.....

    At the least. he better hope his wife(if he's married) doesn't find out the real value of the thing!!
    "The beauty of the Second Amendment is that it will not be needed until they try to take it. TJ"

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    Does anyone worry that continued auctions like this will "create" provenance??? There are some auction houses I avoid like the plague at this point because they seem to be nothing more than fraud shops...
    Mike

    "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Benjamin Franklin

    "ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ" - King Leonidas I of Sparta

    Visit "Smokeless Powder", my firearms and 2nd Amendment blog: http://fingolfen.blogspot.com

  8. #8
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    Indeed, it will create provenance to some level, but since most people know (at least should know) that auction houses are out to make a buck and more, so whatever described and sold at auctions does not necessary mean it's authentic. I read the "Billionaire's Vinegar" the other day (thanks Veloce), and the book is a real hoot about fraudulent "made-up" vintage and historic wines being sold for hundreds of thousands of dollars at Christies and the like ! Same thing here, so auction results are really not something to count on for provenence. A purchaser "has" to do his own research even when buying from a highly reputable auction house.
    The real problem in this case is that the Derby/Brown book describes a known and photographed TGE test Luger as authentic (which it's not) and that kind of gives provenance (if viewed incorrectly) to this IJN test Luger that just sold on Greg Martin Auction, due to the similarities in the markings. But, actually, from my view point the sheer fact of the similar markings in itself is one of the proofs that both Lugers are nothing but fake make-up fantasy pieces. It's unfortunate that a book as greatly researched and influential as the Derby/Brown bible just had to "jump the gun" (all pun intended) on authenticating the fake TGE marked Luger before making more in depth research into it.
    Last edited by Edokko; 01-17-2011 at 03:55 PM. Reason: Typo correction

  9. #9
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    At least Martin included the caveat in his description: "Opinions do vary on the authenticity of this seldom seen firearm" so all bidders were forewarned.

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    Hey, if it's in a book, it's got to be legit
    Resistance is futile, you will be assimilated
    The Borg

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by badash5946 View Post
    At least Martin included the caveat in his description: "Opinions do vary on the authenticity of this seldom seen firearm" so all bidders were forewarned.
    Greg Martin usually does a better job than Rock Island... Greg Martin usually doesn't include enough information on most actual Japanese firearms to make an informed bid, though...
    Mike

    "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Benjamin Franklin

    "ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ" - King Leonidas I of Sparta

    Visit "Smokeless Powder", my firearms and 2nd Amendment blog: http://fingolfen.blogspot.com

  12. #12
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    It wouldn't surprise me to see this Luger come up for auction again in the near future; probably Rock Island.


    IMO, provenance has to be clear irrefutable evidence as to the origin of this pistol. For example, factory or arsenal records that indicate this Luger (by serial #) was obtained for testing purposes in an agreement between the German Navy and IJN.

    - tge
    Last edited by TGE; 01-17-2011 at 07:49 PM.

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    http://www.gregmartinauctions.com/au...x?LotID=142096

    It's pretty pristine looking. You would think a piece like this would have some sort of traceable history to it...
    "The beauty of the Second Amendment is that it will not be needed until they try to take it. TJ"

  14. #14
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    Really nice luger; with really strange markings. I have to go with the spurious conclusion, take a $1200 luger and turn it into a $12000 fake is pretty lucrative.
    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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    Anyone want to buy a 22 caliber Polish Target Luger in nickel with matching shoulder stock? Once owned buy Hitlers wife Ava?

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    Takehito I'm sure you noticed navy anchor mark is same as so called navy marked Baby nambu which was questionible too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 03man View Post
    ... take a $1200 luger and turn it into a $12000 fake is pretty lucrative.
    This Luger has changed owners at least twice before this auction sale. It would be nice to know the price appreciation as it changed hands over time, which I am trying to find out.

    - tge

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jareth View Post
    Takehito I'm sure you noticed navy anchor mark is same as so called navy marked Baby nambu which was questionible too.
    Jareth, yes I am very much aware of that, and it would be interesting to note that the exact same said Baby also changed hands twice at the Las Vegas show where the Navy Luger was hammered at. Intersting coincidence.

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    Thats good advice!

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    There are many rifles and pistols that were one-of-a-kind and records were destroyed during the bombing of the Nagoya arsenal in 45. Two examples are the experimental Type 99 sniper carbine carried on a midget sub to shoot seagulls off the parascope and the Type 4 (modified T-2) sniper carbine issued to "little people" paratroopers.

    I know these are authentic because I was there when they were fabricated by Mssrs. Langley and Boone! And if you can't trust Garfield's Dad and Riceone who can you trust?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ronin48 View Post
    Two examples are the experimental Type 99 sniper carbine carried on a midget sub to shoot seagulls off the parascope and the Type 4 (modified T-2) sniper carbine issued to "little people" paratroopers.
    I personally know they exist. They've doubled as alarm clocks for those unfortunates who enjoy sleeping late at the Blevins Plantation.

    C/

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ronin48 View Post
    There are many rifles and pistols that were one-of-a-kind and records were destroyed during the bombing of the Nagoya arsenal in 45. Two examples are the experimental Type 99 sniper carbine carried on a midget sub to shoot seagulls off the parascope and the Type 4 (modified T-2) sniper carbine issued to "little people" paratroopers.

    I know these are authentic because I was there when they were fabricated by Mssrs. Langley and Boone! And if you can't trust Garfield's Dad and Riceone who can you trust?
    Now those two, I can attest are truly authentic, and me no lie.

  23. #23
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    Then has to be real, if you can touch em theys real......at least thats what Ms Kelly at the gentlemans club told me

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    Quote Originally Posted by arisakadogs View Post
    Hey, if it's in a book, it's got to be legit
    And if its not in a book then its fake or dont exsist right.

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    How do we know this is fake? (Yes I tried the search function) And also, did they ever make test Lugers for Japan?

  26. #26
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    Glad you asked ! I thought no one would…. boohoo.
    A few of us (including members of this board, and some Luger gurus including Mike Krause) examined the item in question at the last Reno show where it was on display, and here are the observations we made.

    1) The Luger has the safety area (left rear frame side) ground flat to remove the original German markings and replaced with Kanji 安. Mike noticed the safety being loose and floppy due to the shaving off of a layer of metal. We saw no reason for the IJN to replace safety markings with Kanji for a test purpose gun.
    2) The "flowery" frame top marking design of a naval anchor superimposed with a cherry blossom and a sun ray background has never been seen or used as an IJN marking. There would be no reason for the IJN to mark Lugers meant for test purposes with such an excessive design, and to go through the trouble of creating a roll die to mark an undoubtedly a small quantity of test guns (Only one example known as of date) would be ridiculous for military standards.
    3) The Kanji markings on the right frame 試験用拳銃 (Test purpose pistol) is well done as Kanji markings, but does not make sense as a military marking style. A full description of the purpose of the gun is not normal for military use. But more on the problem on this mark later.
    4) The Luger is marked in several locations with a purported Toyokawa Naval Arsenal inspection mark of an anchor and an encircled ト (To). The problem with the mark is that the encircled-To is “superimposed” over the anchor (getting familiar ? see above 2) which is not a correct inspection mark for Toyokawa Arsenal which used separate stamps of an anchor and the “encircled-to”, and not superimposed together.
    The only other example I know of this strange mark is on a Baby Nambu serial # 613 which is a refinished (nicely refinished, but refinished) gun, that has this same mark stamped on the rear right frame area apparently “over” the refinish (go figure…).
    5) Another item of info that was voiced by the Luger gurus was the proof markings of the piece placing the origination of the gun to be an “issued” piece (I don’t know squat about Luger details so don’t know where it was issued to) and hence is not a manufacturer’s virgin piece, which one would expect if the piece was originally meant to be a test gun to be sent from the Luger factory to Japan. So the assumption will be, that the Luger was somehow obtained by the IJN from some German military source in it’s original form and all the markings per above 1) to 4) were done by the Toyokawa Naval Arsenal where the testing was done.

    Now with all that, we move on to the TGE test Luger described on the Derby/Brown book.

    1) Another weird excessive marking on the frame top of an encircled TGE logo “superimposed” (!!!) over cherry blossom petals. Same thoughts as 2) of above IJN test Luger comments, but there is no realistic reason for TGE to create a roll die and mark the receiver of a test gun with a flowery variation of it’s logo. In addition, such variation of the TGE logo has never been seen before anywhere else. Only on this particular piece.
    2) The exact same Kanji markings of 試験用拳銃 on the frame side. The markings on the two Lugers are EXACTLY the same, from either the same die, or expertly engraved by the same hand. Again the problem of why go through the trouble of marking the test Luger with a full description of the purpose. But moreover, how could two exact same markings be placed on Luger’s that were supposed to be marked and tested at completely different locations, ie Toyokawa where the navy arsenal was and Tokyo where TGE was ?

    With above pointers and the three guns involved, the IJN Luger, the TGE Luger and Baby #613, our conclusion would be that all three of these guns went through some pretty fancy treatment by the same person.

    If any other guns surfaces with bonafide provenance, then I will change my mind, but for now all three are fake marked guns.
    Last edited by Edokko; 01-19-2011 at 06:30 PM.

  27. #27
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    Ouch...thanks Edokko! I hope the poor guy who bought it doesn't read this. The other test Lugers that I found online all had the "common" symbol of the country stamped on it rather than a flowery interpretation.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by kablam View Post
    Ouch...thanks Edokko! I hope the poor guy who bought it doesn't read this. The other test Lugers that I found online all had the "common" symbol of the country stamped on it rather than a flowery interpretation.
    ON the contrary, I hope the new owner does read this and returns the fake for his money back. Every time it is sold "without" provenance, it gets farther from the truth, IMO.

    Here are the auction pictures of the luger in question, just so they don't get lost or forgotten.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 84811_01.jpg   84811_02.jpg   top view compressed.jpg  
    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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