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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I picked this up from a friend a few years ago. It’s taken me a while to take a good look at it. The grips look to have black paint on them which is old, thin, and chipped. The pistol is all matching save for the mag, and I think it’s a common piece in just ok or decent condition.
I’d like it to look better, and am thinking I should try to remove the paint but wanted to ask for advice on it first. Should I leave it be, or try to gently clean it off? Advice?

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First let me congratulate you on finding a tranistional Type-14. This is an example of having the Large Trigger Guard change incorporated (Showa 14.9) but not having the magazine retention spring added to the front grip strap (Showa 14.12). Would like to see a photo of the pistol put together but from the photos posted I would leave it alone.
 

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I agree with the comments by "type-14" - leave it alone. Removing the paint could also cause more problems and even lessen the pistol's value. In addition to black, I have also seen Type 14 grips full-painted in white and red colors. There is no way to know for sure for any individual example if the paint was applied by the Japanese or post-war. It is known that some equipment was "customized" by Japanese soldiers including paint application. There is also evidence that black paint was applied to some war items by Japanese naval authorities. Again, for this pistol, don't mess with the grips - just keep everything clean and lubricated.
 

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Suggestion: preserve your original grips and use reproduction grips for shooting.
I can recommend these: Nambu Type 14 grips, 25 lines – Deer Hollow Enterprises, LLC
I have a set of these for my Type 14. Somewhat related, Deer Hollow also makes Type 14-style grips for the Ruger .22 pistols, which were inspired by the Type 14. I have a set of these too, and they really improve the grip of the Ruger Mk IV.
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Part of me was hoping that someone would say that this is a rare, Naval black-painted pistol, one of only 3 reported in North America (or something along those lines). ;)

My only Naval Special rifle has remnants of black paint on the action, and I have one scabbard that I picked up at a show that I’m pretty sure has it’s era black paint. But at any rate, I had given some thought on these grips and wasn’t convinced it was the same, but as a rule, I don’t clean up paint or apparent “improvements” from anything unless I run it past this forum and a few other friends. Thanks for the info!

Type14, I’ll post a few more pics here after I wipe it down and get it back together. The firing pin spring fell out of the pin in two pieces, so I need to find a replacement.
 

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Almost looks like a black stain (?). As suggested, I would leave alone. I have also seen Japanese WWII Items with black paint that appear to be original, or at least very old. But of course, all are 75+ years old and could be post war.
I have an NCO Sword with a Black painted scabbard, not overpainted, several scratches down to bare metal. Interesting, Dawson's Sword book shows a Black painted NCO scabbard, but make no mention. Nice purchase on your pistol.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I posted last year asking a few guys to post their black painted items, and there were some neat photos shared. Don Schlickman shared a few that were stunning.

Leon, I’ll have to order that spring kit. I almost bought it back when I picked this pistol up, simply because the seller told me that the spring was very weak. It came with an extra mismatched mag, so I may sell it and pick up some cases from Wideners to use for reloading. I study and collect the rifles, and try not to get into the pistol side of things.
 

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Hang onto your spare mismatched magazine if it works.
Examine your magazines carefully. I was having feeding problems, after solving the stove pipe problems caused by that awful PCI ammo. There was a small depression/dent in the magazine along the edge of the follower button slot. It evidently was binding on the follower. After straightening it out, the magazine worked properly.

Although I also have dies - Redding - and brass (from Graf's) I do not reload pistol since I mainly am interested in rifles - Swiss K31, Finn M39 and M28/76, and Swedish Mauser and concentrate my efforts on these. I gave my PCI ammo to a local licensed reloader. He pulled the components and reloaded it for me. The PCI factory ammo has a minimum powder charge that does not generate sufficient force to cycle the bolt fully.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Leon,

That’s a good idea. I read up on converting 357 sig brass, and saw (but didn’t read) forming 40 S&W brass, but as cheap as it is, I’ll just buy a bag of brass from Wideners along with a few hundred bullets. I reload quiet extensively, so I’m always looking to play with new stuff. I just have never gotten into studying the pistol side of collecting, I limit myself to Japanese rifles, and even that’s a narrow field for me. I hope getting this T14 up and running doesn’t change all of that. ;)

Wolff isn’t taking orders at all, but I found a set of their springs at Midway, and they’re to arrive on the 10th.

-kevin.

I’ve elsewhere that PCI Nambu ammo is
Hang onto your spare mismatched magazine if it works.
Examine your magazines carefully. I was having feeding problems, after solving the stove pipe problems caused by that awful PCI ammo. There was a small depression/dent in the magazine along the edge of the follower button slot. It evidently was binding on the follower. After straightening it out, the magazine worked properly.

Although I also have dies - Redding - and brass (from Graf's) I do not reload pistol since I mainly am interested in rifles - Swiss K31, Finn M39 and M28/76, and Swedish Mauser and concentrate my efforts on these. I gave my PCI ammo to a local licensed reloader. He pulled the components and reloaded it for me. The PCI factory ammo has a minimum powder charge that does not generate sufficient force to cycle the bolt fully.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
type-14, you asked for a few more photos, hope these do the trick. Sorry for the lousy quality, I never can get good photos using my phone.

All of the serialized parts are matching, and the bore is mirror bright. I’m not touching it, just wiping it down and waiting to get the firing pin spring so I can shoot a few rounds before putting it back away.
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Agreed Mike, we can never go wrong asking q’s first. I’m 100% convinced that I don’t know enough, so it’s best to ask, followed by sitting on my hands for a few years before deciding not to do anything at all. 😉
 

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Thanks for the photos. Yup you got a winner. Really, recommend that leave it as it and enjoy it as a new addition to your Nambu collection.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
type-14, you got it... the pistol will remain as-is. I thought I had a common, run-of-the-mill T14, and the grips bothered me. I’ve had it for a few years, but never really looked at it much. I just used it as a display piece when I set up at shows. I haven’t even had it apart. I just wiped it down, swabbed the bore, and put it in out.

I’m glad you shared the info on this variation. Good info, I’m glad I pickedk it up! Now, off to buy some components to load while I wait for the spring kit to arrive.
 

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Well you do know that now you need both 14.9 dates (STG & LTG). 14.11 date that would just like your 14.10 date and then both 14.12 date with and without the grip spring and the 17 groove grips. See how this web can grow and that is just showing the incorporation of 3 changes within that 3 month period.
 

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I must warn you that collecting Nambus is highly additive with no known antidote. However the side effects include, a very nice Nambu collection over the years, the continue hunt for the ones to fill those holes in the collection, upgrading various examples, total disregard for most other weapons, and a very thin wallet at times. ;)
 
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