Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

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Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by Rogue45 » Tue Jun 25, 2013 4:24 pm

I have a few firearms that I consider "heirlooms", but I figured I would post a couple pics and a little story of my FN Browning M1900 manufactured in 1902.

My grandfather was a SSGT in the Army Air Corps during WW2. He flew on B-24's in the CBI, flying fuel over the "hump". When the war ended he and his buddies were so excited and in such a hurry to leave, they packed their gear and took off for home, making several stops along the way to refuel. Somewhere over Libya the bomber lost an engine and they had to make an emergency landing for repairs. He told me that in their haste to leave, he and his crew members forgot to pack parachutes, so if they had ended up going down there was no bailing out. He told me he traded a Chinese officer something he can't remember in exchange for this pistol. It's a .32ACP with a 7 rd mag. The ammo is Russian and the markings on the slide show that it was first shipped to Russia then to China where gramps traded it. It has a crack on the rear of the slide and is missing the original left grip panel. It looks like it was replaced with a piece of horn of some type. Gramps said it was that way when he got it. It came with a chintzy leather holster with cartridge loops and a flower design on it. Its not a shooter and it's in rough shape, but to me its priceless. Hope you all enjoy it.

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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by eugene » Tue Jun 25, 2013 6:25 pm

Around 1990/1991 just before I graduated high school my grandfather gave this to me and while I didn't get the significance at the time i cleaned it up as best as I could and wrapped it in a blanket and kept it under my bed always intending to get it fixed up to shoot again.
I later learned that he passed it on to me because I was the first born grandson to carry the family name (other older sons were born to his daughters so different last names) and it was somewhat of a tradition because it was passed on to him as the oldest.
So fast forward 20 + years to last year (2012) right after Christmas my son started talking about wanting a bb gun so we assumed other 6 years olds in his class must have gotten one. We told him if he did good in school we would get him one at spring break. I found a Henry AR7 at this little gun store about the same time and made my first purchase (my other rifles where purchased by my father when I was a kid) and so our family now had another outdoor activity.
I asked the little gun store if they could do muzzleloader repairs and they said they don't but have a gunsmith whom they take them to about once a month who flies to California and works on stuff for movies. So I pulled mine out and let my kids see it and told them the history I knew then we dropped it off at the gun shop and picked it up a couple months later.
I then took it to our family reunion in August so everyone could see it and afterward received this picture I had posed for in e-mail from one of the distant family members.

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My Cabelas safari shirt and outdoor pants fit the picture well. The powderhorn he gave me as well and I ordered the brass ends and string from Track of the Wolf and the shooters bag is from RMC Oxyolk.
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by Rogue45 » Tue Jun 25, 2013 6:35 pm

That's a cool story. I'm sure your grandfather would be proud of you for carrying on the tradition.
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by raptor » Tue Jun 25, 2013 7:51 pm

I will post pics later, but I have a colt model 1911, a real 1911 made in 1917ish that my grandfather carried in World War 1 over to Europe. He was a naval officer and was sent to Russia after the war for a short time to help with the effort there. He carried there for self defense.

He then passed it along to my father who carried as his personal weapon weapon in World War 2 from Italy through Germany.

(Yes back then officers could and in my Grandfather's case was required to purchase his own sidearm).

My father had it reworked and bigger sights put on it and used it as his go to weapon until his death. In the fullness of time it became mine. I used it for self protection for a few years until I replaced it with a Colt Gold Cup.

It looks beat to hell and has been reparkerized once or twice. I also replaced the grips with a modern grip about 35 years ago. However, it has shot at commies and nazis and has fought in two world wars.

It resides in my safe today and will remain there until in the fullness of time I pass it along.



Edited to add:
A 96ish year old 1911. The barrel and bushing were replaced at the same time the grips were replaced in about 1977. It was reparkerized at least twice and the sights were replaced in the 60's.

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Last edited by raptor on Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:18 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by Niblick » Tue Jun 25, 2013 8:12 pm

raptor wrote:However, it has shot at commies and nazis and has fought in two world wars.
Your .45 wins this thread, and all others. Pics!
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by rhi » Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:23 pm

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This is my great-granddad's off-duty carry gun. He was a Philadelphia LEO around the turn of the 20th Century. If family hearsay can be trusted, this little .32 S&W pistol killed two "bad guys" and kept him alive. I have no way to verify if this is true. However, I still have this little revolver and like to think of the connection to my past. :)
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by tedbeau » Wed Jun 26, 2013 11:08 am

eugene wrote:Around 1990/1991 just before I graduated high school my grandfather gave this to me and while I didn't get the significance at the time i cleaned it up as best as I could and wrapped it in a blanket and kept it under my bed always intending to get it fixed up to shoot again.
I later learned that he passed it on to me because I was the first born grandson to carry the family name (other older sons were born to his daughters so different last names) and it was somewhat of a tradition because it was passed on to him as the oldest.
So fast forward 20 + years to last year (2012) right after Christmas my son started talking about wanting a bb gun so we assumed other 6 years olds in his class must have gotten one. We told him if he did good in school we would get him one at spring break. I found a Henry AR7 at this little gun store about the same time and made my first purchase (my other rifles where purchased by my father when I was a kid) and so our family now had another outdoor activity.
I asked the little gun store if they could do muzzleloader repairs and they said they don't but have a gunsmith whom they take them to about once a month who flies to California and works on stuff for movies. So I pulled mine out and let my kids see it and told them the history I knew then we dropped it off at the gun shop and picked it up a couple months later.
I then took it to our family reunion in August so everyone could see it and afterward received this picture I had posed for in e-mail from one of the distant family members.

Image

My Cabelas safari shirt and outdoor pants fit the picture well. The powderhorn he gave me as well and I ordered the brass ends and string from Track of the Wolf and the shooters bag is from RMC Oxyolk.
That's a really neat story. Have you had the gun examined? You should see if there is anyway to get any history on the gun. It's a beaut.

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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by Mr. E. Monkey » Wed Jun 26, 2013 4:11 pm

raptor wrote:I will post pics later, but I have a colt model 1911, a real 1911 made in 1917ish that my grandfather carried in World War 1 over to Europe. He was a naval officer and was sent to Russia after the war for a short time to help with the effort there. He carried there for self defense.

He then passed it along to my father who carried as his personal weapon weapon in World War 2 from Italy through Germany.
A great story to go along with a great pistol. :D


This story also starts in WW1, but with my great-grandfather. He was drafted, and from what I have been able to find, earned his commission in France in 1918, and probably got his sidearm around the same time, I think. Not long after, the war ended, and great-grandpa returned to the states and decided to make a career out of the Army. He enjoyed it so much that he found an excuse to return to Europe in the 1940's. His son (my grandpa) also served in WW2, and later received the pistol from his father. He eventually passed it on to my parents because his son-in-law (my dad) served in the Army National Guard. In turn, my parents have passed it on to me. They're still alive, I'm just looking after it for now. :)

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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by eugene » Wed Jun 26, 2013 4:34 pm

tedbeau wrote:
eugene wrote:Around 1990/1991 just before I graduated high school my grandfather gave this to me and while I didn't get the significance at the time i cleaned it up as best as I could and wrapped it in a blanket and kept it under my bed always intending to get it fixed up to shoot again.
I later learned that he passed it on to me because I was the first born grandson to carry the family name (other older sons were born to his daughters so different last names) and it was somewhat of a tradition because it was passed on to him as the oldest.
So fast forward 20 + years to last year (2012) right after Christmas my son started talking about wanting a bb gun so we assumed other 6 years olds in his class must have gotten one. We told him if he did good in school we would get him one at spring break. I found a Henry AR7 at this little gun store about the same time and made my first purchase (my other rifles where purchased by my father when I was a kid) and so our family now had another outdoor activity.
I asked the little gun store if they could do muzzleloader repairs and they said they don't but have a gunsmith whom they take them to about once a month who flies to California and works on stuff for movies. So I pulled mine out and let my kids see it and told them the history I knew then we dropped it off at the gun shop and picked it up a couple months later.
I then took it to our family reunion in August so everyone could see it and afterward received this picture I had posed for in e-mail from one of the distant family members.

Image

My Cabelas safari shirt and outdoor pants fit the picture well. The powderhorn he gave me as well and I ordered the brass ends and string from Track of the Wolf and the shooters bag is from RMC Oxyolk.
That's a really neat story. Have you had the gun examined? You should see if there is anyway to get any history on the gun. It's a beaut.
There isn't a lot to go by, no serial number, just the company name. The company went out of business in the 1920's, but the percussion cap was invented during the civil war but wasn't common until afterward as no one wanted to retool in the middle of the war. So that puts the age between 100-150 years old.
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by raptor » Wed Jun 26, 2013 10:07 pm

Mr. E. Monkey wrote:
raptor wrote:I will post pics later, but I have a colt model 1911, a real 1911 made in 1917ish that my grandfather carried in World War 1 over to Europe. He was a naval officer and was sent to Russia after the war for a short time to help with the effort there. He carried there for self defense.

He then passed it along to my father who carried as his personal weapon weapon in World War 2 from Italy through Germany.
A great story to go along with a great pistol. :D


This story also starts in WW1, but with my great-grandfather. He was drafted, and from what I have been able to find, earned his commission in France in 1918, and probably got his sidearm around the same time, I think. Not long after, the war ended, and great-grandpa returned to the states and decided to make a career out of the Army. He enjoyed it so much that he found an excuse to return to Europe in the 1940's. His son (my grandpa) also served in WW2, and later received the pistol from his father. He eventually passed it on to my parents because his son-in-law (my dad) served in the Army National Guard. In turn, my parents have passed it on to me. They're still alive, I'm just looking after it for now. :)

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That is a nice 1911. I still have what I think is the original leather holster, the original magazine with a lanyard although the original grips are starting to crumble.

I am impressed with the condition of your 1911. Are those the original wooden grips?

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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by Mr. E. Monkey » Thu Jun 27, 2013 5:53 pm

I'm not sure if they're original or not--he may have replaced them during WW2, but I'm pretty sure it's been left alone since then, at least.
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by BigDaddyTX » Thu Jun 27, 2013 10:46 pm

raptor wrote:
Mr. E. Monkey wrote:
raptor wrote:I will post pics later, but I have a colt model 1911, a real 1911 made in 1917ish that my grandfather carried in World War 1 over to Europe. He was a naval officer and was sent to Russia after the war for a short time to help with the effort there. He carried there for self defense.

He then passed it along to my father who carried as his personal weapon weapon in World War 2 from Italy through Germany.
A great story to go along with a great pistol. :D


This story also starts in WW1, but with my great-grandfather. He was drafted, and from what I have been able to find, earned his commission in France in 1918, and probably got his sidearm around the same time, I think. Not long after, the war ended, and great-grandpa returned to the states and decided to make a career out of the Army. He enjoyed it so much that he found an excuse to return to Europe in the 1940's. His son (my grandpa) also served in WW2, and later received the pistol from his father. He eventually passed it on to my parents because his son-in-law (my dad) served in the Army National Guard. In turn, my parents have passed it on to me. They're still alive, I'm just looking after it for now. :)

Image
That is a nice 1911. I still have what I think is the original leather holster, the original magazine with a lanyard although the original grips are starting to crumble.

I am impressed with the condition of your 1911. Are those the original wooden grips?
A little OT, but I have a 1917 Kongsberg Colt with original grips and they seem a little dilapidated but otherwise fine. If someone had bothered to take care of it at all, they'd be perfectly serviceable.

I'll post pics of my "heirloom" shotguns when I take some. I have both of my grandfathers and my fathers. Sadly no real cool stories, but I'm proud to own them anyway.
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by DarkandShiny » Fri Jun 28, 2013 12:01 pm

This is my wife's great-great grandfather Goulelmous (not sure of the spelling but I think it means 'William'). I married into a Greek family and stories of how their family single-handedly fought the Turks are frequently told at the Easter celebrations. I am sure the rifle was not his as I'm fairly sure that the standard issue for the Hellenic Army at the time would have been a single shot. A lever action repeater would have been very costly (cool scope huh?) - and the family was very poor. The baby Browning pistol however resides in my father-in-laws safe.

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This is my Grandfather's Luger that now resides in my safe. Holster, magazine and ammunition are all original to the gun.

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I also found this certificate with my Grandfather's signature on it. I used the names of his commanding officers to piece together a history of his time in the European theater.

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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by raptor » Fri Jun 28, 2013 12:32 pm

This is exactly the document that GI's returning with legit war prizes were required to obtain to legitimately be in possession of the war prize. That said there is no way of know how many were smuggled back.

That is a neat piece of history! I have seen a lot of war prizes but very few I saw had the paperwork to go with it.


DarkandShiny wrote:
I also found this certificate with my Grandfather's signature on it. I used the names of his commanding officers to piece together a history of his time in the European theater.

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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by Merovech » Fri Jun 28, 2013 12:41 pm

Tagged for total absolute unabashed jealousy and envy as I have no heirlooms, firearms or not to call my own... :ohdear:
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by DFWMTX » Fri Jun 28, 2013 5:13 pm

I am currently in possession of my grandfather's 1940's Winchester .30-30. No full-of-awesome stories on how he obtained it or used it in combat however. My grandfather once owned a Steudabaker dealership. A rancher came to his dealership to get a vehicle fixed, and when he couldn't pay the bill, the rancher asked my grandfather if he'd take the rifle in trade. Obviously my grandpa said yes. It's been sitting in my folks' closet for years. I came into possession of it when coyotes were spotted near my folks house. My dad wanted me to clean up the gun in case he had to put down the coyote to protect their dog. I got it fixed up, and when I asked my dad if he wanted it back, he said I could hold onto it until it's needed. So I am.
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by angelofwar » Fri Jun 28, 2013 5:44 pm

Awesome thread...need to post a pic of my dad's 1860's Stevens double barrel 16-gauge. While not heritsae per-se, but will be, is my 1988 Red Rider BB gun. Got it for my tenth birthday, but it also happened to be the 50th anniversary of the Red Rider, so mine has a special emblem in the stock.
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by RickOShea » Fri Jun 28, 2013 6:49 pm

I have my Grandfather's old Inland M1A1. The guys at M1 Carbine forum said that it was a second production run M1A1, and that it was refinished/updated at the Augusta Arsenal sometime before the Korean War.


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As I remember the story, back in '70 my Grandfather caught some "cattle rustlers" trying to load-up some of his dairy cows one afternoon. All he had with him was his 20 gauge Rem 870 loaded with rock salt (for hippies and the neighbor's dogs). He was able to run the rustlers off with a couple of shots in their general direction. The next week he sold a couple of his young bulls at the local livestock auction, then went to the LGS and bought the M1 carbine and a Browning Hi-power. He gave me both of them a couple of years before he passed away.
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by raxar » Fri Jun 28, 2013 7:34 pm

Rogue45 wrote:I have a few firearms that I consider "heirlooms", but I figured I would post a couple pics and a little story of my FN Browning M1900 manufactured in 1902.

My grandfather was a SSGT in the Army Air Corps during WW2. He flew on B-24's in the CBI, flying fuel over the "hump". When the war ended he and his buddies were so excited and in such a hurry to leave, they packed their gear and took off for home, making several stops along the way to refuel. Somewhere over Libya the bomber lost an engine and they had to make an emergency landing for repairs. He told me that in their haste to leave, he and his crew members forgot to pack parachutes, so if they had ended up going down there was no bailing out. He told me he traded a Chinese officer something he can't remember in exchange for this pistol. It's a .32ACP with a 7 rd mag. The ammo is Russian and the markings on the slide show that it was first shipped to Russia then to China where gramps traded it. It has a crack on the rear of the slide and is missing the original left grip panel. It looks like it was replaced with a piece of horn of some type. Gramps said it was that way when he got it. It came with a chintzy leather holster with cartridge loops and a flower design on it. Its not a shooter and it's in rough shape, but to me its priceless. Hope you all enjoy it.
Don't be shocked if that turns out to actually be a chinese counterfeit browning. They were hugely popular in china from the turn of the century and Chinese 'smiths and shops made a crapload of them. They even copied the markings (with varying degrees of accuracy) it might explain the cracked slide, as the steels used weren't the best
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by Rogue45 » Fri Jun 28, 2013 11:47 pm

raxar wrote:
Rogue45 wrote:I have a few firearms that I consider "heirlooms", but I figured I would post a couple pics and a little story of my FN Browning M1900 manufactured in 1902.

My grandfather was a SSGT in the Army Air Corps during WW2. He flew on B-24's in the CBI, flying fuel over the "hump". When the war ended he and his buddies were so excited and in such a hurry to leave, they packed their gear and took off for home, making several stops along the way to refuel. Somewhere over Libya the bomber lost an engine and they had to make an emergency landing for repairs. He told me that in their haste to leave, he and his crew members forgot to pack parachutes, so if they had ended up going down there was no bailing out. He told me he traded a Chinese officer something he can't remember in exchange for this pistol. It's a .32ACP with a 7 rd mag. The ammo is Russian and the markings on the slide show that it was first shipped to Russia then to China where gramps traded it. It has a crack on the rear of the slide and is missing the original left grip panel. It looks like it was replaced with a piece of horn of some type. Gramps said it was that way when he got it. It came with a chintzy leather holster with cartridge loops and a flower design on it. Its not a shooter and it's in rough shape, but to me its priceless. Hope you all enjoy it.
Don't be shocked if that turns out to actually be a chinese counterfeit browning. They were hugely popular in china from the turn of the century and Chinese 'smiths and shops made a crapload of them. They even copied the markings (with varying degrees of accuracy) it might explain the cracked slide, as the steels used weren't the best
Interesting, I suppose it could be, a fake but it really doesn't worry me much. I'd never try to sell it anyhow, to me it's just a cool part of history and something to talk about. Thanks for the info though, I wasn't aware of that. It seems strange though that the Chinese would inscribe Cryllic markings on the slide though. I suppose someday I will take it to an expert.
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by Coal-Cracker » Sun Jun 30, 2013 1:00 pm

J.P. Sauer & Sohn bolt (Mauser) action. Proprietary claw mounted Zeiss 4X optics. Chambered in 7x64 Brenneke. Hand engraved and checkered. Original sling.

My grandfather was in the 4th ID in Germany during WWII. He was an Infantry NCO (and Squad Leader) at the the Bulge to the end of the war in the ETO. At some point they took out a German sniper and my grandfather took his rifle. It wasn't an actual German Military rifle so, technically, he wasn't permitted to send it home. He pulled a few strings and managed to send it home (in pieces) anyway. Miraculously, all the parts made it to their destination, and following the war, the rifle was used by my grandfather for hunting. My father received the rifle when my grandfather died. Recently, my father passed it down to me. I also have the letters he mailed to his brother(s) telling the story of how he captured the rifle.

A few years back, I was doing some investigating about the rifle. With the help of message boards, I was put in contact with the author Jim Kate, who has written several reference books on J.P. Sauer firearms. Turns out, he was in the process of writing a new book on J.P. Sauer's hunting rifles. We made an arrangement that if I were to provide him high quality photographs of my rifle for his upcoming book*, he'd tell me as much as he could about the rifle. It's kinda cool having a published book (from a well respected author) showcasing my grandfather's rifle. I think if he were alive today, my grandfather would get a "kick" out of that.

Once I found out the monetary value (coupled with sentimental value), I was a concerned that I shouldn't take it hunting anymore for fear of damage and it should just reside in the safe. My father pointed out that that was why my grandfather sent it home from Europe and he would want it to be used in the field. So, while I don't hunt with that often, I make a point to get it out at least once a season - though admittedly, I do "baby" it.

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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by Rogue45 » Sun Jun 30, 2013 9:36 pm

Very cool rifle and story Coal-Cracker.
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tedbeau
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by tedbeau » Mon Jul 01, 2013 10:02 am

angelofwar wrote:Awesome thread...need to post a pic of my dad's 1860's Stevens double barrel 16-gauge. While not heritsae per-se, but will be, is my 1988 Red Rider BB gun. Got it for my tenth birthday, but it also happened to be the 50th anniversary of the Red Rider, so mine has a special emblem in the stock.
But I got's to know, does it have a compass in the stock? Be careful or you'll shoot your eye out!

Back on topic, I don't have anything near as nice as some of the previous posters. All I have is this Charter Arms 38 special that was inherited by my wife from her father.


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She knew it was in his house somewhere and I found it while making a trip over there just to look for it as we were cleaning out the house to put it up for sale. The gun was still wrapped in the oil/wax paper, in the original box, along with a receipt from the sporting goods store it was purchased at along with 50 rounds of ammo. All 50 rounds were still the original ammo carton along with the gun. As near as I can tell the gun was never fired. It was purchased and put in a closet for 30 years.

This was my first handgun. I bartered with my wife, (at the time we were engaged) and her brother for the gun. The brother didn't want it, so I did a roof repair on a dormer of the house in exchange for the gun. It cost me two bundles of shingles and 12 hours work.

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raxar
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Re: Your "heirloom" firearms and stories. "Pics*

Post by raxar » Mon Jul 01, 2013 7:38 pm

Rogue45 wrote:

Interesting, I suppose it could be, a fake but it really doesn't worry me much. I'd never try to sell it anyhow, to me it's just a cool part of history and something to talk about. Thanks for the info though, I wasn't aware of that. It seems strange though that the Chinese would inscribe Cryllic markings on the slide though. I suppose someday I will take it to an expert.

they're not really fakes, the chinese were just so desperate for arms that they started making their own. if anything it makes it a little more historically interesting. You'll find all kinds of markings on them, they couldn't read english so they didn't know what any of them meant, you'll find some that even have the mauser banner on them. They just copied whatever markings were on the "orginal" sometimes upside down, sometimes backwards.

the main reason why I suspected its a copy is that those grips look very close to the ones on my "brownings"

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...although my tactical get up is a tarzan loin cloth and giant lolly pop
Cobray's website wrote:Remember The bitterness of poor quality lingers long after the sweetness of a cheap price is forgotten.
Cobray firearms, your #1 source for irony.

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