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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys, I just picked up this FN Hi Power. It's got the tangent sight, slotted for a stock as well. It came with an Inglis stock, but I sold that since I can't put it on the gun. I'd really appreciate any info you guys can give me on it, specifically what the proofs mean. I wasn't able to find much. I believe it's prewar though. I'll let the pictures do the rest of the talking:
https://imgur.com/gallery/OEMNT
 

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I have a 95% pre war HP with Army proofs in the 17000 serial range. Your pistol appears to be a refinish, grips appear to be from Altamont Grips, there are no Army proofs, without referencing my books the serial range would be pre war, pitting under the grips and slightly beyond appear to have finish in the craters again suggesting a refinish and FN blue at that time had a nice metal polish before the finish was applied. The scale on rear sight was normally left in the white ( or lightly polished not blued) as I recall...too late tonight to research it properly.
This is a nice pistol appears matching and a nice find.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have a 95% pre war HP with Army proofs in the 17000 serial range. Your pistol appears to be a refinish, grips appear to be from Altamont Grips, there are no Army proofs, without referencing my books the serial range would be pre war, pitting under the grips and slightly beyond appear to have finish in the craters again suggesting a refinish and FN blue at that time had a nice metal polish before the finish was applied. The scale on rear sight was normally left in the white ( or lightly polished not blued) as I recall...too late tonight to research it properly.
This is a nice pistol appears matching and a nice find.
Thanks for the info. It is all matching, except for the mag. Being in California I couldn't take possession of the original mag. When you say FN blue, do you mean the pistol was re-blued by FN, like a factory refurbish?
 

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I doubt that is a factory refurbish but very hard to tell from a photo on the screen. The edges of the metal do not have crisp lines like a new one and the color and sheen are not quite right. Post your photos on the 1911 forum ---Browning Hi Power section there is a person who possesses greater knowledge than I. I am basing my observations on the prewar and post war pistols in my " collection" but that is only a representation of seven, and also the Stevens book on High Powers. Page 66 specifically shows the proliferation of State acceptance marks for an army pistol.
I have gun safes in two locations and my prewar Tangent is in the one in Texas and my post war tangent is here so I will not have access until next month.
I also notice the graduations on your rear sight are the very early or first design where five hundred meters went only half the distance, that was corrected to use the entire leaf which again should not be blued.
If you take your barrel out it should have the early cam slot which was very round, later pistols were squared off more. To venture a guess I would say your pistol was an early Chinese export that was returned in the eighties when thousands were returned to this country.
 

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Unfortunately ebeeby, that is NOT the case anymore. The long standing resident brain trust there recently decided to abandon that forum en masse.

I'll just say it's real shame
...it was completely avoidable
.....
That's a shame. You guys were really helpful. I bowed out after an unpleasant interaction with a newer member, but you and others were very helpful and gracious.
 

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I doubt that is a factory refurbish but very hard to tell from a photo on the screen. The edges of the metal do not have crisp lines like a new one and the color and sheen are not quite right. Post your photos on the 1911 forum ---Browning Hi Power section there is a person who possesses greater knowledge than I. I am basing my observations on the prewar and post war pistols in my " collection" but that is only a representation of seven, and also the Stevens book on High Powers. Page 66 specifically shows the proliferation of State acceptance marks for an army pistol.
I have gun safes in two locations and my prewar Tangent is in the one in Texas and my post war tangent is here so I will not have access until next month.
I also notice the graduations on your rear sight are the very early or first design where five hundred meters went only half the distance, that was corrected to use the entire leaf which again should not be blued.
If you take your barrel out it should have the early cam slot which was very round, later pistols were squared off more. To venture a guess I would say your pistol was an early Chinese export that was returned in the eighties when thousands were returned to this country.
No need to go anywhere else ibmikey, you've got things well in hand here :thumbsup:. OP's pistol has seen a rough life, it certainly has been refinished...the original finish was polished rust blue and it does have the Type 1 tangent sight which was originally left in-the-white...not blued. It's a later aftermarket matte salt blue refinish. There are no MAE/Belgian Military markings and it IS...based upon very similar known SNs, likely from a Chinese Contract..it was almost certainly produced in 1939. Keep in mind, the relatively low SN is because SNs were set aside in blocks...they were not sequential.

The only deviation I'd suggest is the terminus of the barrel cam cut; the original "round" cam cut was superseded by the current "square" terminus in 1938. That does not mean it does not have the "round" cam cut as FN continued to use existing barrels after the paper change, it could be either in 1939.
 

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That's a shame. You guys were really helpful. I bowed out after an unpleasant interaction with a newer member, but you and others were very helpful and gracious.
VERY kind of you PAD, thank you! Unpleasant experiences such as yours...with that newer "member", were becoming far too frequent and were the root cause of the departure of the old hands. Thanks again!

AND, you are absolutely spot on regarding AV's book(s).
 

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Hi guys, I just picked up this FN Hi Power. It's got the tangent sight, slotted for a stock as well. It came with an Inglis stock, but I sold that since I can't put it on the gun. I'd really appreciate any info you guys can give me on it, specifically what the proofs mean. I wasn't able to find much. I believe it's prewar though. I'll let the pictures do the rest of the talking:
https://imgur.com/gallery/OEMNT
The "Proofs":

Port side slide and frame; the stick figure...actually a "Belgian Lion" (apparently lean times in Europe in 1903 ;)), over "P.V." is the post 1924 Mandatory Proof. The lion is the Belgian State symbol while the "P.V." stands for "Poudre Vive"...smokeless powder. The "Star over E" is the FN Controller...Final Inspector, mark of Auguste Jamart.

Barrel/Chamber; same/same as above as well as the "Crown Oval ELG" Epreuve de Leige...Proof of Leige - Final Proof.

Other assorted marks...difficult to tell because of the refinish, will be assembly marks.

Hope that helps ;).....
 

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Submoa, Boy have you given me a swelled head, I have read so many of your comments through the years maybe just a little sunk in. I truely love High Powers (and many other firearms) and try to learn all I can about them through publications and persons such as yourself.
 

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Submoa, Boy have you given me a swelled head, I have read so many of your comments through the years maybe just a little sunk in. I truely love High Powers (and many other firearms) and try to learn all I can about them through publications and persons such as yourself.
Well, thank you for the generous words ibmikey :). If a few of my ramblings have been of interest I'm gratified, but you've been providing wise counsel for quite some time...I've noticed ;).

FWIW, we share similar feelings; I've got a real soft spot...some might point out that soft spot is in my head, for the BHP but I'm fond of a lot of other guns as well. I just strive to learn what I can about my toys through publications and conversation with others on the forums and in person.

Keep up the good work here my friend :clap:.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Wow, thanks dudes! Especially the information on the proofs. Are they not proofs? Would it be more appropriate to call them stamps? Bit of a bummer that it's reblued, but oh well. I paid a thousand for it. But, it came with the stock which I got 450 for, so it was really only 550. So I think I made out okay.
 

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Wow, thanks dudes! Especially the information on the proofs. Are they not proofs? Would it be more appropriate to call them stamps? Bit of a bummer that it's reblued, but oh well. I paid a thousand for it. But, it came with the stock which I got 450 for, so it was really only 550. So I think I made out okay.
Yes, I'd say you did fine.

Some of the stamped markings are indeed proofs (Rampant lion/PV; Star/ELG in oval), others are inspection (Star/E for example), and others assembly markings or acceptance marks. Once again, OI think you did fine. I have noticed that as you get into higher-end collecting (ANY gun or other things), exact terminologies can become important. To buyers and sellers and observers. To some of the rest of us, not so much. Sobeit...
 
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