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Craptacular
Jul 11, 2004



This is my paternal grandpa, in 1943.



He joined the Navy in August 1942. He'd gotten his draft notice and didn't want to join the Army, so he joined the Navy. He'd tried to join the Navy in May 1941, right after he graduated high school, but they said he was 10 lb underweight and refused. However, in that intervening year, the requirements were relaxed somewhat, so off he went to boot camp, and then to the heavy cruiser USS Salt Lake City, where he served for the duration of the war as a 40mm antiaircraft fire control director. But this thread isn't about 40mm AA guns. I'm here to post about a different gun, namely his bringback Type 99 Arisaka.

Back in the 90's he wrote an 80-page memoir about his service in WWII which he gave to all his grandkids, so I'll let him speak for himself:

My grandpa posted:

We covered troop landings in Aomori, Hakodate and Otaru, and it was nice not to have fired a shot to do so. After the troop landings were completed and we were anchored in Ominato, we were granted a liberty to go ashore on the mainland of Japan. We were allowed to wander around in only a small area and there wasn't anything to do, but we did get our feet on the enemy's mainland. While we were anchored in Ominato, the captain had Japanese rifles brought aboard and anyone who wanted one as a souvenir could have it. I decided to take one and brought it home. I still have it and it means a lot more to me now than when I first got it.

(click for bigger images)




The mum is intact. The first two characters are "9", and the last character means "Type" or "Model."


The marking on the right after the serial number is for the Nagoya arsenal. The marking on the left is a series mark, in this case for the number 4, so the serial is actually something more like 4-29644.


Flip-up rear sight goes out to 1500 meters.


Does anyone know what these characters are on the sling?


Apparently the hooked guard on the bayonet is the earlier style. The mark is for Kokura arsenal.


Bayonet mounted, monopod extended.


Here he is with the rifle in 1993, still fitting in his old uniform from 50 years earlier.


As far as I know, it was the only firearm he ever owned. He never fired it. I don't think 7.7 Japanese was readily available at the time, anyways. He wasn't a hunter so luckily it wasn't sporterized or rechambered in another cartridge like so many other bringback Arisakas apparently were. When I was a kid, I knew the rifle existed, but I never actually saw it myself until 2005, a couple years after it had been given to my uncle & younger cousin, and a couple years before my grandpa died. I really wanted it, but my grandpa chose who he'd given it to, so respected his decision and kept my mouth shut, hoping that I might have a chance at getting it in the future. After my grandma died earlier this year, the extended family began divvying up family memorabilia, and the rifle was offered to me. So for once, I had a reason to actually put my C&R FFL to use. (Originally I got it just for the Brownells discount.) Iíve finally gotten my white whale, the bolt-action moon-caliber C&R oddity in my collection full of modern NATO-caliber semi-autos.

I fully intend to shoot it, I just need to buy some 7.7 Japanese. Is there anything specific I should check on the rifle before I actually shoot it? Everything seems to be in working order when dry-firing it.

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Admiral Bosch
Apr 19, 2007
Who is Admiral Aken Bosch, and what is that old scoundrel up to?

Wow holy poo poo. That's the nicest Arisaka I think I've ever seen.

Craptacular
Jul 11, 2004



Also have some lol-tastic pictures of my dad posing with the rifle.





I don't know how to explain the shirt, or the mustache, other than that it was early 70's.

Sten Freak
Sep 10, 2008

Despite all of these shortcomings, the Sten still has a long track record of shooting people right in the face.


College Slice

Cool rifle and family history. I would love to see how it shoots with quality ammo.

Nipponophile
Apr 8, 2009


That really is in lovely condition. It's very hard these days to find an unmolested Type 99 with all the pieces like dustcover, monopod, bayonet, and AA sights. I can't really tell from the pictures, but is the dustcover serialed to the gun?

The writing in the sling is a series of numbers. From the top (camera right) down, it reads 301 206.

Craptacular
Jul 11, 2004



Nipponophile posted:

I can't really tell from the pictures, but is the dustcover serialed to the gun?
I don't see where the dustcover is serialed at all. The bolt and extractor are matching, they have the last three digits of the rifle's serial on them.

Nipponophile
Apr 8, 2009


If it's there, it would be 3 digits on the lip directly above the safety knob. Not all of them were serialed, and I want to say it may have varied by factory.

Cyrano4747
Sep 25, 2006



Goddamn that is one beautiful rifle and one goony loving dad.

As for poo poo to check out not really. Japanese rifles are notoriously hard to test headspace on because no good gauges really exist. Does the SN on the bolt match the receiver? Check the bore for obstructions, fire a round, and inspect the brass for anything funky.

Iíve got a bolt m/m that Iíve shot so I had to go through all that poo poo. Frankly I wouldnít worry too much about it if you arenít shooting thousands of rounds through it.

7.7 is also a great round to reload for.

Craptacular
Jul 11, 2004



Cyrano4747 posted:

As for poo poo to check out not really. Japanese rifles are notoriously hard to test headspace on because no good gauges really exist. Does the SN on the bolt match the receiver? Check the bore for obstructions, fire a round, and inspect the brass for anything funky.
Yes, everything I've found matches (receiver, bolt and extractor).

Cyrano4747 posted:

7.7 is also a great round to reload for.
Cool but I'll probably just buy 100 rounds of Norma or something and call it a day. I doubt I'll want to fire it enough to where it'd make sense to invest in dies. I'll make sure and save the brass in case I change my mind though.

5er
Jun 1, 2000





Every post about that rifle and your family is gold.

Parts Kit
Jun 9, 2006

durr
i have a hole in my head
durr


Wow, it's got the mum, dust cover, AA sights, and the monopod? There's probably a lot of collectors out there that would be extremely jealous of that.

Butch Cassidy
Jul 28, 2010



Awesome. Om the off chance you do shoot it a fair bit, slug the bore. Looks good enough that you may luck out with a 0.312" groove diameter. If so, Lee's 185 grain gas checked round nose mold would work and it's a very good bullet design.

Cyrano4747
Sep 25, 2006



Craptacular posted:

Yes, everything I've found matches (receiver, bolt and extractor).

Cool but I'll probably just buy 100 rounds of Norma or something and call it a day. I doubt I'll want to fire it enough to where it'd make sense to invest in dies. I'll make sure and save the brass in case I change my mind though.

Yeah, if the bolt matches you're 100% good to go. The issue is that what the exact headspace requirements for 7.7 were is a tad bit of a mystery. Collectors have made some good guesses by casting chambers of matching guns, but it's not firmly settled. While there are gauges out there apparently they're for a SAAMI spec that was kind of unilaterally decided on by people entirely unrelated in the gun's design or manufacture. The tl;dr when I was looking into it was that they're not all that reliable and it's better to just check for signs of bad stuff on one or two pieces of brass.

If the bolt matches the gun, though, you're good to go.

As for reloading, keep half an eye on Ebay. I got some old dies there for about $20. Save the brass though. If nothing else it's prime sale/trade fodder.

Doctor Grape Ape
Aug 26, 2005

Dammit Doc, I just bought this for you 3 months ago. Try and keep it around for a bit longer this time.


Cool gun, even cooler story.

I've seen Arisakas in museums that aren't that nice. Heck, I didn't even know the factory bluing was that nice but then again Japanese guns aren't really in my wheelhouse.

stealie72
Jan 10, 2007

Their eyes locked and suddenly there was the sound of breaking glass.


Man, great gun and even better story. Your dad is 70s AF.

wheres my beer
Apr 29, 2004


Tryin' to catch me ridin' dirty


Fun Shoe

I love everything about this thread, and everything about your family. Especially your dad's ridiculous mustache.

mischief
Jun 3, 2003


That's a beautiful rifle but let's be honest... that shirt is the loving MVP itt

flightless greeb
Jan 28, 2016



Awesome early Nagoya! I wish it was possible to date these a little more precisely than "WWII"

Doctor Grape Ape
Aug 26, 2005

Dammit Doc, I just bought this for you 3 months ago. Try and keep it around for a bit longer this time.


flightless greeb posted:

Awesome early Nagoya! I wish it was possible to date these a little more precisely than "WWII"

What's the issue with dating them? Did they not put any markings on them or were the records for when things were made destroyed during the war/post-war?

I basically know nothing about WW2 Japanese guns other than their names and what they look like.

McNally
Sep 12, 2007

Ask me about Proposition 305


Do you like muskets?


The kanji on the sling work out to mean 2 0* 6, maybe a rack number?

*this isn't actually the traditional character for zero, but I think the actual character represents the concept of zero as opposed to being a numerical value and is therefore somewhat complicated to write, so they just use the circle for convenience

Edit: A cursory check reveals that the representation of the actual character used for zero is actually more complicated than just "concept of zero" and I should know better than to make assumptions.

McNally fucked around with this message at 20:21 on Nov 21, 2019

Cyrano4747
Sep 25, 2006



New TFR icon up in here, via AI. Feel free to use it for your other Japan needs.

Somebody Awful
Nov 27, 2011

BORN TO DIE
HAIG IS A FUCK
Kill Em All 1917
I am trench man
410,757,864,530 SHELLS FIRED




Doctor Grape Ape posted:

What's the issue with dating them? Did they not put any markings on them or were the records for when things were made destroyed during the war/post-war?

Arisakas weren't date marked, although Nambu pistols and some other weapons had both year and month stamped on them.

Notgothic
May 24, 2003

Thanks for the input, Jeff!

My Navy grandpa's bringback Arisaka got lost somewhere in the Bronx in the 50s or 60s before he died, so this is kind of a vicarious thrill for me. My dad still has the bayonet at least, although it has a straight guard instead of the hook.

Nipponophile
Apr 8, 2009


Cyrano4747 posted:

New TFR icon up in here, via AI. Feel free to use it for your other Japan needs.

I'm flattered that you would add a thread tag for my personal use, and I promise not to abuse the privilege.

Notgothic posted:

My dad still has the bayonet at least, although it has a straight guard instead of the hook.

The hooked guard was to enable the "stacking" or "piling" of rifles, which is a thing soldiers used to do before they realized you could just lean your rifle up against whatever and nobody gives a gently caress. While the Garand and Enfield had dedicated stacking and piling swivels respectively, the Arisaka relied on the bayonet to make an orderly teepee of guns. As the war went on, shortcuts were implemented to simplify the manufacturing process. Removal of the hook was one of these, after a focus group determined that one might simply "set the rifle on the ground" when not in use.

Paul MaudDib
May 2, 2006

"Tell me of your home world, Usul"


Big fan of Harpooned: the Japanese Cetacean Research Simulator. Research the whales with explosive-tipped harpoons.

"Researching... the whales appear to be afraid of us. We need to perform further research to determine the reason why."

absolutely sick arisaka tho

Cyrano4747
Sep 25, 2006



Nipponophile posted:

I'm flattered that you would add a thread tag for my personal use, and I promise not to abuse the privilege.


The hooked guard was to enable the "stacking" or "piling" of rifles, which is a thing soldiers used to do before they realized you could just lean your rifle up against whatever and nobody gives a gently caress. While the Garand and Enfield had dedicated stacking and piling swivels respectively, the Arisaka relied on the bayonet to make an orderly teepee of guns. As the war went on, shortcuts were implemented to simplify the manufacturing process. Removal of the hook was one of these, after a focus group determined that one might simply "set the rifle on the ground" when not in use.

Setting the rifle on the ground isnít really a great solution if you arenít 1944 Japan though. Keeping dirt and moisture off a gun is a good thing. Admittedly much more of a concern in a peace time military where small arms are being produced in smaller numbers and need to last longer.

Notgothic
May 24, 2003

Thanks for the input, Jeff!

Nipponophile posted:

The hooked guard was to enable the "stacking" or "piling" of rifles, which is a thing soldiers used to do before they realized you could just lean your rifle up against whatever and nobody gives a gently caress. While the Garand and Enfield had dedicated stacking and piling swivels respectively, the Arisaka relied on the bayonet to make an orderly teepee of guns. As the war went on, shortcuts were implemented to simplify the manufacturing process. Removal of the hook was one of these, after a focus group determined that one might simply "set the rifle on the ground" when not in use.

Jeez, somebody's always trying to reinvent the wheel -- we always used the ramrod when stacking our muskets. Just get one of them on the rifle!

(the vast majority of Google image pictures show muskets stacked using the bayonet instead of the ramrod, actually, so I guess someone in reenacting realized that we had a better option than bending our ramrods, since I've been out)

McNally
Sep 12, 2007

Ask me about Proposition 305


Do you like muskets?


Notgothic posted:

Jeez, somebody's always trying to reinvent the wheel -- we always used the ramrod when stacking our muskets. Just get one of them on the rifle!

(the vast majority of Google image pictures show muskets stacked using the bayonet instead of the ramrod, actually, so I guess someone in reenacting realized that we had a better option than bending our ramrods, since I've been out)

Using the bayonet was also in period drill manuals.

Well, Civil War period. Can't speak to older manuals.

Midjack
Dec 24, 2007





Every picture in this thread is amazing and that is a gorgeous rifle.

Craptacular
Jul 11, 2004



Went to go shoot an AR this afternoon, and took the Arisaka along just in case the range had some 7.7 Japanese for sale. They had some other weirdo moon-calibers like 7.65◊53mm Argentine, but not what I needed. Guess I'll have to mail-order some.

wheres my beer
Apr 29, 2004


Tryin' to catch me ridin' dirty


Fun Shoe

Craptacular posted:

Went to go shoot an AR this afternoon, and took the Arisaka along just in case the range had some 7.7 Japanese for sale. They had some other weirdo moon-calibers like 7.65◊53mm Argentine, but not what I needed. Guess I'll have to mail-order some.

DAMMIT. I was at the gun show today and one of the dealers had a .30 cal can full of 7.7 Japanese.

Craptacular
Jul 11, 2004



I got 100 rounds of 7.7 Japanese last week, so I went and shot the Arisaka this afternoon. Not going to be shooting this much at $1.60/round.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bwTs0qd0UCE

Shoots a little high and to the left, but the group isn't terrible.

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Cyrano4747
Sep 25, 2006



Itís a great round to reload for. Youíll make back the cost of the dies fast and they use common bullets. Brass lasts a long time and you can make more out of .30-06 without much drama.

Also lots of used dies around if you haunt eBay.

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