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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Pics of the Arisaka I was talking about.

My buddy bought it.
Think that piece will be hard to put on once we get it in?
It has the mum and everything. Do you guys think it is a 'last ditch'?
We haven't fired it, might have it checked first.
It was $225
 

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I have a 99 similar to yours,but newer yet. Which is bad for me.Yours is not a last ditch.Mine is closer to that.Yours is closer to the end of the war though,u can tell by the wood butt plate and the welded safety at the end of the bolt. Mine is worse the rear sight is a solid peep and the upper handgaurd is only half length.Never hurts to have it checked out.Also I checked on mine the bayonet lug is just pressed on a rubber mallet worked on mine.
 

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As said above, the main body of the rifle does not appear to be a Last Ditch. The Japanese began using wooden buttplates in about 1943 on the "tranissional" T-99.
"Transissional" means that by that time, the war had gone bad enough that the Japanese had begun deleteing or modifying certain aspects of the rifle.
Such as metel buttplates to wood. No more AA sights or monopods etc.
The rifle does appear to have a last ditch type bolt which I'd bet is a mis-match. Early/transissional rifles generally had an egg shaped bolt knob. But it's not unheard of that a late 43/or 44 made Transissional rifle might have a Last Ditch bolt.
There should be a 3 diget number on the bottom of the bolt handle. And it should match the last 3 of the serial number on the receiver.
You don't mention if the Mum is present. But if it is mis-match bolt,it doesn't really make alot of difference. These rifles are most desirable in matching original condition w/intact Mum. 2nd most in matching w/ground/defaced MUM. Least deirable is mis-matched. W/or W/O Mum.
If the Mum is gone and it has mismatched bolt/parts, it probably has more parts value than collector value. But may still be a good shooter and "general" example for a WW-2 weapons collection. It depends on how much of a stickler you are for originality.
There's probably not much use in having the rifle "checked" to see if safe to fire. Generally there are 2 main issues. Be sure the bore is unobstructed, and HAS RIFLING. (THe Japanese made smoothbore Trainer rifles that are intended for BLANKS ONLY and will BLOW UP if live ammo is used).
2nd is bolt headspace. Generally these rifles were built strong and w/loose tolerances. Which means that if need arose, bolt swaping in the field which might result in minor heaspace issues, usually created no safety problem. Usually just minor case bulging.
There are litterally millions of mis-matched bolt Arisaka's in the U.S. w/minor headspace issues that a good safe shooters. So having one checked w/a "Go/NO-GO" gauge really doesn't mean that much.
The general practice of collectors is to tie the rifle down in some manner, and test fire using a string tied to the trigger. Listen for odd sounding report, check for split cases, or damage to rifle.
I've owned many mismatched Arisaka's and have only had 1 (last Ditch) that I felt unsafe to fire due to headspece issues.
The reason for most mis-matched bolts was that when the soldiers boarded the ships to return home, the bolts were removed from their souveneer rifles. Upon disembarking they were returned A BOLT. Not neccessairly THE bolt that came w/the rifle. Unless the savvy soldier took care to make sure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
We actually just sold it sunday because I had a couple people at the show look at it and they said it had been reblued and the same that you said about the bolt handle and everything. A guy offered me 50 bucks more than what two dealers said they could sell it for, so I figured what the heck. Besides, the money is going toward a 1903a3 so it is being well spent.
 

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Sure wish I could find an Arisaka in decent shape.
They're not hard to find. Saw many @ the last few gunshows I've attended. I guess the "kicker" is in what you consider "decent".
The fact is that by wars end the Japanese were preparing to arm the citizenry w/sharpened sticks to defend the homeland. And it's a pretty safe bet that most Arisaka saw some use and will show it.
Personally I'd prefer a Mummed/Matching all original example that shows battle usage over a pristine unused arsenal rifle.
( My Iwo Jima bringback T-99 is just such a rifle w/8 notches carved in the stock to keep tally by the doomed Japanese soldier who was ordered to kill 10 Marines before he died. Obviously he didn't make it)
But pristine examples do exist. I've owned several. Watch the gun auctions or post a Want Ad on the Gunboards.com Japanese trader forum. I'm sure one of the current collectors has a suitable duplicate he'd part with for the right price.
Another good tactic is hanging out outside gunshows watching for people bringing in the rifle they recently inherited and want to sell.
 

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I was told and now believe that the blue was a good indication of the quality of manufacture. Since the war I have owned two 99s with chromed bores. The blue 50 years after manufacture and treated roughly was as good as you would want on both.
The first cost me $12. That was hard to save for a kid making a quarater an hour with a girlfriend. The first two rounds of Japanese military that came with the rifle exploded a clay bank in the gravel pit. The things actually exploded. The rest are in the San Marcos River. If you find some original ammo with a violet band on the bullet, treat it carefully.
eddie
 

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That's interesting about the ammo. During my years of Arisaka collecting/interest, I've never fired any WW-2 vintage ammo. Kept it as part of collection.
I'd bet over at the Gunboards.com Japanese forum, you could find out what the violet band means.
Those were the days when you could get a Arisaka for less than $20. I traded some junk for my 1st one at a flea mkt.
 

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The Old Days

Hello all,
Just a few notes on the old days. During the late 50's and early 60's most gunshops (including Ye Old Hunter) had a barrel (or barrels) full of Jap rifles, rolling blocks, etc for $9.99 to $19.99. Once in awhile you could find a treasure (chrome bore) for the $9 price. Conversions during that time frame were common and some actual beauties were made out of the type 99. If I can figure a way to post, I will show you one. For those of you who are purists remember that in those days you couldn't give away a Jap rifle, and good grief who would ever want a rolling block rifle for goodness sake???? The rifle pictured (hopefully) is a chrome bore 99 that has been completely redone with Mannlicher (marble cake) stock with carved oak leaves and acorns, set trigger, jeweled bolt and follower, 3 wheel buff and blue, spoon bolt, etc, etc. This rifle will consistently shoot under 1" at 100yds and has killed more deer than all of the rest of mine combined. Hope you enjoy, and God bless.
 

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That's a beautiful rifle. Did you leave in 7.7 or rebarrel? I well remember the days when one could buy cheap milsurps. As I reall even at the big chain stores like Sears.
I first got into Milsurps in the 1970's as a teen aged gun-nut hanging around the old Deep River Armory in Houston. The place was awesome. Even had guns hanging from the ceiling. Even tho I was legally too young to legally buy them, Ole John would ocasionally sell me a junker to tinker on.
My Dad had (now brother has it) one of most beautiful 98K Mausers w/original blue and PERFECT markings I've ever seen. Vet bringback he bought from the vet (a friend of his) who brought it home from WW-2. Dad put a sporters stock on it and threw the old stock away! I recall the stock hardware laying around as a kid. But no idea what became of it. Fortunantly dad didn't alter the action or bolt. I've suggested to bro that the rifle would be worth MUCH more if he restored it. But he likes it as is for sentimental reasons.
 

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Hi Fatstrat,
It still has the original "mint" chrome bore 7.7Jap barrel that it came with!!! As I understand it this was a 1939 and in darn near mint condition when the conversion started. I also remember the days when Sears, Wards, Western Auto, etc, had an abundance of surplus guns, and you could get the utility grade stock from Fajen for a song, or some of the others had blems (that would be considered 3X now) for next to nothing. Well that's not quite true, money was scarce back then at times ;-). I still have many of the old conversions, and some newer ones that I play with occasionally, but that is fodder for the other forums. Getting back to the 7.7 I have seen some absolutely beautiful guns that were mostly done in the 50's and 60's. Some had exceptional wood running the gambit from flame and quilt maple to special selection walnut of all species. I even saw a beauty made from monkey pod, the stock was a bland "blond" color but the craftsmanship was exceptional. I had the chance (and money) to either buy it or a model B Mauser and opted for the latter (this was 1969). BTW I still look for them but they are hard to find with a quality job done on them. Take care and God bless you and yours. cordell
 
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