View Full Version : Back from Burma
December 30, 2008, 02:58 PM
Hey all, i've just recently acquired this pistol from a late uncle of mine, and no one seems to be able to pinpoint what it really is. He was shot down over in Burma during WWII, and brought this back. Any info would be appreciated!
December 30, 2008, 05:14 PM
It's a native copy of a Browning Model 1900, originally made by Fabrique National of Belgium between 1900 and 1914, but sold widely around the world. This particular one would have been copied by one of several different groups in SE Asia (like the Cao Dai, who did the same thing in Vietnam) that are known for taking a genuine original and then reproducing it out of whatever hunks of steel they can get their hands on. It's a fascinating piece of history, but you shouldn't fire it because factory parts likely wouldn't fit as replacements, and the people that made these had no real way of heat-treating the steel they used. If you post some close-ups of the markings on the left side of the pistol, there may be more info, but many of the people that did these simply stamped markings that looked like the originals on their copies.
December 30, 2008, 09:55 PM
wow, i really didnt know that there were semi-automatics pistols that dated so far back. just out of curiosity, do you have any idea of its worth?
December 30, 2008, 11:19 PM
"Worth" is a funny thing, because it depends on the market for a given item; since this one shouldn't be fired, anyone that wants it is going to want it because it's an example of an unusual handmade pistol. If you find a collector who specializes in these things, who knows how much they would be willing to pay for it? I would think that it would be worth more to you for its history and family ties than most offers you're likely to get for a non-shooter pistol in .32 Auto.
January 1, 2009, 09:51 PM
"...didnt know that there were semi-automatics pistols that dated so far back..." Lots of 'em. Semi-autos date from the 1890's. John Browning designed the M1900 in 1896. The first ones were built in 1899.
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