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Type 14 and Type 94 Nambus

Discussion in 'Firearms Research' started by Dr.Rob, Jul 2, 2009.

  1. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

    A friend of mine asked me to look these over, both are original and while 'undocumented' (he had no capture papers) he claims his father a marine aviator brought these back from WW2. The rice paper wrapping of the magazines still in cosmoline makes me thinks these were 'unissued' and 'captured' from a supply depot rather than battlefield pickups. Also the paper is the same in both cases.

    I THINK the type 14 is an early 1940 Pistol as that's when the trigger guard was changed but the extra magazine retention spring isn't there (mid 1940 improvement) Also the bluing on BOTH guns is really good, not the 'rough wartime finish' that the later guns are known for. Can anyone narrow that date based on the markings?

    The type 94 has the rounded hump on the cocking piece (pre Jan 45) and is deeply blued, plus the grips are the checkered bakelite which I understand was changed to wood in the mid 40's. The Type 94 was cleaned and fired sometime in the past by the original owner. I demonstrated how pressing the exposed sear bar could drop the hammer on the 94 which the current owner was unaware despite having an article about the pistols. I don't have a guess as to the mfg date on this one can anyone tell from the pics?

    BOTH holsters are original and contain a cleaning rod and spare chromed magazine.

    With the original holsters and in this condition I figured a 'safe bet' insurance value was around $3,000 dollars. Anyone have a better idea?

    Loads of pics will follow.

    Attached Files:

  2. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

    Type 14 additional pics with holster and markings.

    Note the magazine wrapped in rice paper and cosmoline. Was this Japanese practice or GI ingenuity to ship it home?

    Spare striker pin did NOT appear to be in the pouch in the holster where it belonged but may have been in bottom of the holster. Lanyard appears original.

    Note the safety slot is NOT worn or scratched from use.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jul 2, 2009
  3. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

    Type 94 and holster additional pics...

    Was surprised at how this pistol felt in the hand despite oddball looks. Again the holster is original and stamped inside with characters. Note the similar wrapped magazine. Cleaning rod was present as well.

    Fact is I have never seen a type 94 that looked THIS good, and I suspect most wear on the holsters is a result of being overly soft from cosmoline and scuffing as they've been moved around over the past 60+ years. I also understand good leather Japanese holsters are rare as they rotted easily in the jungles of the SE Pacific and SE Asia.

    FYI these pistols are not for sale and don't belong to me, someone just asked me to dig up some info on them. So please, you experts chime in!

    Attached Files:

  4. Birdmang

    Birdmang Well-Known Member

    I have a type 14 like yours but it has a smaller trigger guard, I also have the same case. Mine has no capture marks but you can tell it was in battle, the case especially. I would really like to fire it but I don't have any ammo.
  5. SDC

    SDC Well-Known Member

    Some VERY nice examples; the Type 14 was made in October, 1939 (signified by the "14.10" on the frame; the 10th month of the 14th year of Hirohito's reign) at the Nagoya Arsenal; the Type 94 was also made at Nagoya, but in June, 1941. To find out all you could ever hope to on these pistols, go to http://members.shaw.ca/tju/jhg.htm
  6. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

    Great info on that site, thanks very much!
  7. Jim K

    Jim K Well-Known Member

    The Nagoya Arsenal symbol is on those guns, but they were not made at that arsenal. The Type 14 pistol was made in October 1939 by the Kokabunji factory of the Nambu Rifle Manufacturing Company. Nambu was later bought by Chuo Kogyo, and the Type 94 was made by them in the same factory, using the same symbol. The date on the 94 is hard to read but looks like 18.6, which would be June 1943. Honeycutt shows an 18.6 Type 94 that has the plastic grips, so they were still using them at that time.

    There is some speculation about those pistols with both the Nagoya and Chuo Kogyo (or Nambu) symbols. One possibility, which seems logical and is known to have been done later, is that the company delivered its products to the government arsenal and the Nagoya mark is equivalent to an acceptance stamp. Another theory is that the dual marking is just an indication that the company factories were under Nagoya control, which they were.

  8. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

    That type 14 turns out to be a somewhat rare one. The transitional model with the large trigger guard (implemented in September, 1939 –the large trigger guard was introduced to allow the use of a gloved finger in cold climates.), but without the magazine retention spring (added sometime in December, 1939). Only 5,750 pistols were made with this combination of features.

    I have never seen a type 94 with bluing that good.

    I also didn't see any numbers on the backs of the holsters nor am I sure the magazines are matching, but given the condition (the type 14 looks darn near unissued) I'd bet they are.

    I advised him to get a 'real' appraisal but based on what they are sellling for right now and the relative rarity of the type 14 I suggested insuring them for $3,000-3500 dollars.

    Am I way out of the ballpark here?

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