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Discussion Starter #1
I don't collect Japanese rifles directly but do that one nice T99 I purchased and now the last ditch that was generously given to me. I tend to immerse myself into any new rifle and have learned quite a bit here at this forum. My curiosity has my interest peaked now.

I'm curious as to what are the most "collectible" Japanese rifle iterations might be. Certainly condition (matching, mums, finish) are important but even the best of these won't break the $500 mark if my searches have been accurate. Are there any "holy grail" Japanese rifles out there that command four digits or is the the market for them still pretty much suppressed, like with the M91/30s and the like?

Just curious. I'd like to keep my eyes open for any special models I might encounter.

Rome
 

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Are there any "holy grail" Japanese rifles out there that command four digits or is the the market for them still pretty much suppressed, like with the M91/30s and the like? Just curious. I'd like to keep my eyes open for any special models I might encounter.

Rome

I'm sure there are folks who'd be willing to pay ~$1K for a 45th Series, 12th Series, or Emergency Use T-99 rifle. I'm sure other examples exist.

C/
 

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Nice early T99s with all the bells and whistles regularly bring north of $500 at auction, likewise T38's with matching dustcovers.
 

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I'm curious as to what are the most "collectible" Japanese rifle iterations might be. Certainly condition (matching, mums, finish) are important but even the best of these won't break the $500 mark if my searches have been accurate. Are there any "holy grail" Japanese rifles out there that command four digits or is the the market for them still pretty much suppressed, like with the M91/30s and the like?

Rome
I too have pondered the "holy grail" question - I think that is really going to depend on the collector and what their goals are - I kinda go off the assumption that the rarer it is, the more "holy" it becomes, but perhaps not. Based on price, it would seem the sniper rifles are up there on the list. Since I'm no where near that point, I suppose right now for me the holy grail (because my collection is so limited) is an early series 99 with all the bells and whistles as appropriate to the series, and the bringback papers (Am I correct in assuming the bring back papers are a pretty significant bonus??)

I probably paid too much, but just got last week a Kokura 23rd, all the goodies, matching including the dust cover and an original sling, nice bore - overall I'd say very good condition - and that was $800.00 - but having the dust cover and sling, I was willing to pay that much and it is in my hot little hands. Not quite my holy grail, but getting closer....
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Those are all great replies and I do appreciate them. Certainly the Garand "copy" is one of the more "holy grail" examples I'd forgotten about. Snipers, of course, have their own mystic and market.

Japanese rifles seem to be very similar in the collecting world to the 91/30s....another ubiquitous rifle that is everywhere for about $100 but has examples that reach the 1k mark.

And, please understand that I'm not being a "collector snob" here. I'm not ultimately interested in "market value" as might be assumed. I'm just curious about where one would end up traveling to build a good Japanese rifle collection.

This has been helpful. It appears that being aware of rarity, then, is in the numbers and condition just like pretty much any other rifle. Market prices will only increase in the coming years as fewer and fewer new pieces surface and as the old vet collections and bringbacks surface. Very interesting. I guess I'll have to really bone up on the appropriate marks and features. Rarely do I see a rack of rifles in a shop when there isn't a Jap model stuck in there. I've usually just passed them by but now I'm going to be paying closer attention to a "find" that has been overlooked.


Rome
 

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Type 5 Garand copies are very exspensive and of course, rare!
The snipers always get good prices as do the Type 2 Paratroop rifles. They get good prices even in awful shape because of their novelty.
 

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Snipers!! Especially the T-99 adjustable and the Kokura T-99s. Any of them with a matching scope, case, and all the stuff.
 

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a type 38 sniper, a type 99 external adjustable sniper, a type 1 test paratrooper, a t-100 paratrooper, a t-100 sub-gun, type 5 garand copy, and any other experimental rifles are holy grails. they are so rare that you almost never see them for sale.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
The book sounds like a great idea. I do have a pretty nice library and anyone who collects needs one too! I'm going to "hint" to my better half and my kids that it would be a nice gift for Dad!

Rome
 

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I sold a 45th series, average Chinese-use condition (rode hard...etc.) for $3250 earlier this year. Had a second buyer waiting if the first declined, willing to pay the same price. A lot depends on how bad the buyer want's the rifle, how much he is willing to pay. Had it been anything other than a Mukden $100 would have been too high, considering the condition.

Collecting 99s by series and variation can seriously damage your brain and powers to think.
 

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The most pricy one I have seen (besides the machinegun) was the Type 38 Sniper that sold at auction last year. I went to $9,800 and quit, closed at $14,800 if I remember right. Only one of about 6 known. Oh, well maybe next time I will have a few more dollars. Would have looked good next to my 4x ajustable. Good luck - Skid
 

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The most pricy one I have seen (besides the machinegun) was the Type 38 Sniper that sold at auction last year. I went to $9,800 and quit, closed at $14,800 if I remember right. Good luck - Skid
That's not a bad price. One sold privately back around 2002 in the mid-$20K. Had a proper scope.

C/
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Wow! Who knew these rifles could reach that stratosphere. I've been missing something!

Thanks for all that great info. It's been a real eyeopener and I'll be paying a lot more attention to those orphaned rifles in the racks from now on!

Rome
 

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$3250 for the Mukden!!! Wow, I bet that was nice to get. I guess I am just simple, but I still dig the last ditches best. Just something about them.
 
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