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I picked up two I got from classic. I missed that RGuns had them and had already ordered them. One of them is matched with no date. The other is a 1959 dated frame with mismatched slide. Both look to have been refinished over some light pitting. At least the import mark is discreet.
 

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I picked up two I got from classic. I missed that RGuns had them and had already ordered them. One of them is matched with no date. The other is a 1959 dated frame with mismatched slide. Both look to have been refinished over some light pitting. At least the import mark is discreet.
Are the ones from classic also with R Guns import mark or other importer's mark? Which factory is the one without date stamp?
 

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R Guns imports.

The one has no factory number or date. Just a serial number.

I wish I’d have have ordered direct from R Guns, but that’s how it goes sometimes.
 

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R Guns imports.

The one has no factory number or date. Just a serial number.

I wish I’d have have ordered direct from R Guns, but that’s how it goes sometimes.
Interesting. The one without factory or date, what's the million series, 29 and above? If the serial number contains 9, 4 or 6, which font do they match with the ones in the photo, left or right? Also notice slight difference on the Chinese character's font too? Probably makes no difference where you order from, unless you go to R Guns store or your local dealer let you select one from a batch.
 

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While this batch was imported from Austria, the dealer there is just a middleman.

I think most likely these came from the horn of Africa, likely Ethiopia. It's well documented that a huge amount of guns was sold to Ethiopia, Eritrea, Sudan, Somalia, etc, by the Chinese (and to a lesser extend the North Koreans) in the 1980's and afterwards, these arms fueled a lot of wars and conflicts, Darfur for one. These guns in this exact, refinished condition have been seen and found there.

It's unlikely that these came from Albania in my opinion, they're too late for that (refinish, etc). It's also possible that they were sold by Israel before being imported from Austria

Here is an example, Chinese Tokarevs, refinished just like these imported (note both the star and plain circle grips), captured from arms smugglers by Ethiopian security at the Somalia/Ethiopian border last year

 

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SKS GOD OF GUNBOARDS
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I have read before that most of the Military small arms from Europe are cleared for import by a firm in Austria that handles such shipments. I believe that most all of the stuff from the Balkans came through this dealer in Austria.
 

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I have read before that most of the Military small arms from Europe are cleared for import by a firm in Austria that handles such shipments. I believe that most all of the stuff from the Balkans came through this dealer in Austria.
Given how deliberate some of the refurbishment on these T54s is, that’s where I’m leaning. For all we know, these were Chinese surplus Tok’s sitting in a warehouse in some province that made their way to the Balkans during the Yugo civil war. That’d align with the later mfg dates some of these have, as well as possibly explain a combination of older ones and T51s with PLA markings. And by deliberate refurbishment I mean the tiny red stripe on the extractor to show a loaded chamber. That’s such a Balkan thing to do LOL
 

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Hoping to order a 3rd from classic soon, get a 60s dated one. Wonder if rguns would do that for me if I asked given it would be my 3rd from them....
 

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I hope top find a 66 factory 1965 or 66 vintage I served in Vietnam at that time. anyone gets an extra let me know I contacted classic by email they said to check with the store late next week????
 

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Why order from a middle man when Rguns will sell directly to the consumer?
 

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Agreed,if you call Rguns and ask nicely they will do it for you. Dont bother with classic they are always swamped.
 

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Received a RGuns Type 54 today dated 1967 factory 66.

The RGuns Type 54 is only a few thousand digits off a Type 54 dated 1967 factory 66 VietNam bring back that I have. Find that interesting that the serial numbers are so close.
 

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Ordered One from RGuns last Sunday and then put a second order for a mother on Wednesday. Friday RGuns called to make sure I wanted both guns and that I didn’t screw up. They told me it will take about 3 weeks but not to worry, they have plenty of guns to fill my order and that they won’t charge my card until they ship.
 

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Why order from a middle man when Rguns will sell directly to the consumer?
The only reason I see Classic being viable is they will ship C&R to CA while Rguns won’t. It’s interesting to see Classic didn’t mark up the price other than a hand select option. Also interesting is Rguns denied your inquiry of dealer pricing. I’m sure Classic is getting some kind of high volume discount.

If I had to have one in CA, I’d go Classic. Thankfully I don’t have to make that decision.
 

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I just got one of these from CF. I appreciate you people sharing knowledge about them. From the collector side I probably got a bottom barrel draw. Looks like the frame was scrubbed and # matched to the slide. # starts with 29 and has no date or factory stamps. The rear sight is also installed backwards. I just wanted a pistol to go with my MAK90 and if it shoots ok I'll be happy.
 

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SKS GOD OF GUNBOARDS
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There seems to be something wrong with adding 54 to first two digits to get date. There are some dated guns so far posted that show it does not work
16024490 factory 66 dated 1969 try adding 54 to first two digits gets you 70 and its dated 69 it was posted that 7 digit serial add first digit and 54 so try 6505844 factory 66 dated 1959 add 6 and 54 you get 60. Is this a proven theory or just a guess?
 

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Got a couple of them over the last few days. Both are all matching factory 636 production. The one with serial starting with 29 is 1982 production, and the other starting with 30 is 1983. The 1982 is in nice condition overall, but the 1983 is much better. I purchased the ‘82 from Rguns directly, but the ‘83 I picked up yesterday from a local shop that stated they got 200 pistols in from Rguns. Paid a little more that way but I just consider it a hand select fee. Already swapped in an unmodified Chinese trigger on the nicer of the two.

Couldn't get all of my photos to post properly so they're available at the following imgur link:

https://imgur.com/a/q5DhbbK

T542.jpg
 

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There seems to be something wrong with adding 54 to first two digits to get date. There are some dated guns so far posted that show it does not work
16024490 factory 66 dated 1969 try adding 54 to first two digits gets you 70 and its dated 69 it was posted that 7 digit serial add first digit and 54 so try 6505844 factory 66 dated 1959 add 6 and 54 you get 60. Is this a proven theory or just a guess?
The date of production for Type 54s made at Factory 66 is based on the observed pattern of frame dates and the first one or two digits of the serial number. Note that no Type 54 pistol dated 1954 has been observed. Also note that no pistols dated 1960 or 1961 have been observed and it is likely none were made those years possibly due to the Great Leap Forward. The serial number/date pattern starts up in 1962 where it left off in 1959 due to this. There are some anomalies in 1964 with two serial number ranges being observed (starting with 9 or 11). Most pistols observed fit the general pattern described above.

The production dates seem to be the following (year of production listed first and the first or first and second digits of the serial number second):

1954 1 none observed
1955 2
1956 3
1957 4
1958 5
1959 6
1960 none observed none made?
1961 none observed none made?
1962 7
1963 8
1964 9 or 11
1965 12
1966 13
1967 14
1968 15
1969 16 note: this is the last year observed with a frame date
 

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There seems to be something wrong with adding 54 to first two digits to get date. There are some dated guns so far posted that show it does not work
16024490 factory 66 dated 1969 try adding 54 to first two digits gets you 70 and its dated 69 it was posted that 7 digit serial add first digit and 54 so try 6505844 factory 66 dated 1959 add 6 and 54 you get 60. Is this a proven theory or just a guess?
Don't mean to double tap, but I believe that the correct way to calculate the date is to take the first two digits of the serial, add 54, and then subtract 1 to get the year of production. For example mine posted above 30+54-1=1983. Now that said, there may be some pistols that don't necessarily follow this numbering scheme as I recall seeing some that had no arsenal markings or anything other than a serial number on the frame and slide, and these may not be numbered in the same way.
 
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