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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
This was my very fisrt gun ever. I would like to know what series it is and when it was made. The numbering is wierd to me, unlike most other military guns. The reciever has a serial and that is the only time this number appers. On the underside there is a 27 and 73. Most other parts have either one of those numbers or both. The rear sight has three completely different numbers that dont correspond to anything else. Is that the way japanese guns are? Thanks for any help.
 

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Hello Marks :
Your rifle is an early T-38 action made by Tokyo Arsenal ( old Koishikawa ) sometime in the 1910 to 1915 era. As you have noted the rifle serial number on the left receiver wall was applied after the rifle was completed but before final assembly. In order to keep fitted aprts together during manufacture the Japanese used an assembly number system to stamp on all the parts of a rifle. This assembly number consisted of a Kanji character and a 1 to 3 digit number.
If you are seeing two sets of numbers under the receiver, this means that when the rifle was rebuilt / repaired at some time a second assembly number was used to identify the fitted parts. Many rifles in the late 30s to early 40s were recycled, the barrels shortened into "short-rifle" configuration, at that time the old assembly numbers were crossed out or removed and the last 3 digits of the serial number were used to identify the fitted parts.
Have seen as many as 3 different assembly numbers on old Tokyo actions, on the other hand I have a 1,600,000 Rifle that is all matching by the "ro" 92 assembly number down to the dust cover.
Vicasoto
 

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For the record (have to have someway to get out of the Junior member status) the Arsenal was the Tokyo Artillery Arsenal at Koishikawa which is in the Tokyo area. As I remember the "Artillery" was later dropped from the name and rifle and pistol (?) production equipment was transferred to Kokura in the early 30s. (Baby and Papa production went to TGE.)

Many collectors refer to these as "no series Tokyo 38s" which is like saying I bought a Ford automobile. None of the Tokyo 38s had a series designation and if you buy a Ford there is a 99.99% chance it's an automobile.

The best history on the Tokyo arsenal I've found is in "Military Industries of Japan" published in 1933. You can sometimes find this at/on Amazon.
 

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Eloldhombre, that .01 % of course, would be a Ford tractor.
Chuck.
 
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