Gas trap Garand question.


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tark
November 5, 2015, 11:30 AM
Hi Guys. This rifle sold at auction a couple of years back for $38,000. It is a fairly standard type II gas trap rifle but I don't recognize the attachment on the muzzle. I am fairly well versed on gas trap Garands, but I don'y recognize this piece.

Anybody out there know what it is?

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tark
November 5, 2015, 11:32 AM
Actually, it is a type ONE gas trap. My mistake.

fireman 9731
November 5, 2015, 12:33 PM
From here: http://www.rockislandauction.com/viewitem/aid/60/lid/1535

"The gas cylinder plug is fitted with an extremely RARE "Alaskan blast deflector" that is one of three known. These blast deflectors were theater made during WWII and were used by the Alaskan Rangers of the Alaskan National Guard while on coastal patrol, both during and after the battle of Attu and Kiska Island."

tark
November 5, 2015, 01:57 PM
Thanks, fireman. I lost my cat and it never crossed my mind to go on line!

fireman 9731
November 5, 2015, 02:35 PM
It is certainly unique. I guess the idea is that if you were laying prone in the snow, the muzzle blast wouldn't throw snow up in the air.

mshootnit
November 6, 2015, 03:26 PM
38,000? 3,800?

The Alaskan
November 6, 2015, 09:04 PM
Interesting. I've never seen that. Although, I would comment that, during WWII, there was no Alaska National Guard as Alaska was not yet a state, but there was an Alaska Territorial Guard, although, to my knowledge, they played no role in the Aleutian Island campaigns. What the ATG is known for is, as you suggested, coastal patrol, watching for Japanese shipping. Most members were Alaska Native.

If you're interested in the story, take a look at the weblink below. It's an excerpt from the memoirs of Ernest Gruening, territorial Governor of Alaska during the war, and later, US Senator for Alaska after statehood.

http://www.alaskool.org/projects/ak_military/men_of_tundra/men_of_tundra.htm

RCArms.com
November 6, 2015, 09:15 PM
38,000? 3,800?
$38k

Gas traps are very rare and command a HUGE premium when they turn up for sale. I've read that it's estimated that less that 50 exist in private hands that are in original configuration.

tark
November 7, 2015, 11:21 PM
Mshootnit, I was shocked that it ONLY brought 38,000 dollars. The Army (Springfield Armory) built approximately 50,000 Gas trap Garands, with three distinct types. They were all recalled and re-built in the days before WWII. The Army was devastatingly efficient in getting nearly ALL of them to be rebuilt to Gas Port configuration.

Today there are about 50 gas trap Garands known to exist, with perhaps a handful more out there undiscovered. Most are in museums. The RIA museum has two, the Springfield Armory National Historic Site has a few, including #1. RIA has #2. They also have Rock Island Arsenal U.S. Rifle, model 1903, #1 in original rod bayonet configuration.

Private collectors have a handful of Gas trap rifles and the few survivors that exist could be anywhere. In your grandfather's closet...who knows.

Finding one is like finding the Holy Grail.

Jim K
November 7, 2015, 11:31 PM
There are a fair number of back-conversions around; for a while a couple of places were making fake parts, complete with spurious markings. Anyone with the bucks who is offered a gas trap M1 had best do his homework or chance having a very expensive fake on his hands.

Jim

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