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Help ID a .44 WWII Revolver

Discussion in 'Firearms Research' started by ns2hr, Jun 26, 2010.

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  1. ns2hr

    ns2hr Member

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    Can anyone help me ID this revolver? It was owned by a relative who was stationed in Burma during WWII. The bore appears to be .44

    Distinguishing markings include:
    - two "R"s with a star above them on the barrel and the breech side of cylinder
    - "LP" stamped on the barrel side of the cylinder
    - A symbol with what appears to be the letters "ELJ" on the breech side of cylinder
    - Serial number on the right side of the frame below the cylinder
    - What appears to be a flying bird stamped on the hammer

    Pics follow
     

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    Last edited: Jun 26, 2010
  2. ns2hr

    ns2hr Member

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    Two more pics
     

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    Last edited: Jun 26, 2010
  3. Ron James

    Ron James Member

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    Hate to disillusion you but I don't believe your uncle carried nor collected that gun in Burma in WWII. Odds are he won it in a poker game or traded a bottle of Johnny Walker for it. Your gun is Belgium and from the open top style I would guess from the late 1800's or early 1900's. The Belgian gun industry made these in great quantity { and sold for only a couple of dollars while a comparable Colt or S&W sold for 10 to 15 dollars } before and after WWI ( they took a break from around 1911 until 1918 ). I attempted to research the markings but no joy, with over a thousand different Belgium makers for that time period that is not surprising. The ELG is simply Belgium proof marks. While interesting to look at and handle the value is not great, perhaps 100 to 150 to someone who is interested in these type of hand guns. IMHO this type of firearm is not safe to shoot with modern ammunition, it may not even be .44 caliber but rather a metric caliber such as .11 MM as used in Europe.
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2010
  4. rondog

    rondog Member

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    Go to Hobby Lobby and get yourself a shadow box with a hinged glass front, and make a display case for it! Just like this one. I bought two of them on sale for 50% off, for $20 each. They're always on sale, perfect display cases for pistols. Hinged front means you can remove the pistol for handling or locking up.

    displaycase01.jpg
     
  5. ns2hr

    ns2hr Member

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    Thanks for the replies. I wasn't really expecting it to be worth very much or have a glorious history, just looking for some info about its origin. I may display it like rondog suggested, but I would prefer it to be disabled before making it a wallhanger as you could still easily load it with .44 special and try to shoot it.

    Any suggestions on how to disable it without making it look obvious?
     
  6. rondog

    rondog Member

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    I wouldn't disable it or modify it in any way, it's fine like it is. It may not be "valuable", but don't risk the value that it does have.
     
  7. natman

    natman Member

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  8. Shadow 7D

    Shadow 7D Member

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    Grind the firing pin, either that peen a empty case in the cylinder so you can't load ammo
     
  9. Old Shooter

    Old Shooter Member

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    Interesting old gun.

    Whose to say that in it's lifetime it couldn't have been carried to Burma by some traveler or gotten there by some means?

    Your relative probably did pick it up somewhere in the Burma theater, almost 70 years later the gun tells it's own tales.

    Although I don't think I would shoot it the thought of disableing a gun always makes me uneasy, don't know why, just don't like the idea.

    The shadow box is a good idea, mayby have a jewler engrave a brass tag to attach to the box reading something like" "This revolver thought to have been carried by So and So in the Burma theater of operations during WWII"

    Enjoy it. :)
     
  10. StrawHat

    StrawHat Member

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    The Belgians made a fairly nice pistol and good copies of many others. This has the look of the pinfire revolvrs that were common up to the early 20th century. I like it.

    As for disabling it, as long as you keep it unloaded, it won't fire. There are a few of us that like firing old revolvers and such. Please don't make it harder to get the old gun running.
     
  11. ns2hr

    ns2hr Member

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    In consideration of the points made I have decided to leave it unmodified. Whether or not I will display it is a matter for later decision.

    Thanks for the info provided so far :)
     
  12. eastbank

    eastbank Member

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    over the years(over 50) i have seen a large collection of odd pistols carried by our GI,s and other country,s GI,s. with photo,s and documents to prove they were carried into combat and they have been fron junk(i would not fire) to collector type firearms.i guess any handgun is better than a stick in time of need. i may have not wanted to carry some of them,but i can understand why they did. eastbank.
     
  13. Ron James

    Ron James Member

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    "It's a Belgium Copy of a Webley" Could be, but out of curiosity, because the Webleys were not an open top revolver, which Webley is it a copy of??
     
  14. natman

    natman Member

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    Sorry, I didn't mean it was a literal copy. The trigger, the trigger guard, the hammer, the bird's head grip could have been lifted from a 19th century Webley. To be more precise it's a Belgian copy of a Webley style revolver.
     
  15. Ron James

    Ron James Member

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    :)I know what you meant natman, I was just rattling your chain a little bit.:D
     
  16. Jim K

    Jim K Member

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    Hi, eastbank,

    I have seen a lot of guns SOMEONE SAID were carried by GI's. Usually the connection goes like this:

    1. Dad was in WWII.
    2. Dad owned this gun.
    3. Therefore this is the gun Dad carrried or captured in WWII.

    The gun may be a Civil War percussion revolver, or a 7mm Belgian pinfire, or an S&W Combat Magnum, but there is no shaking the faith of the family member that Dad shot Japanese with it or "took it off" a German general.

    Jim
     
  17. eastbank

    eastbank Member

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    jim, of course you are right.i have heard stories that just could not be true from true believers. one pistol that sticks in my mind was a colt woodsman taken off of a german officer who was captured in the ruar valley in germany, with pictures of the gun with the GI holding it. i gave my own brother a star light weight 9mm with two boxes of win 100 SP bullets on his second tour in vietnam in 1968, he said he gave it to a australian when he ran out of 9mm ammo, as they had a submachine gun in 9mm. so that star 9mm may be in australia with a unbelievable story behind it. eastbank.
     
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