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Old October 15, 2013, 08:51 PM   #1
histed
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Typer 38 sniper scope?

I have a Type 38 Arisaka. A former Army armorer has a scope similar to this http://www.castle-thunder.com/model.htm (Scroll 'bout half way down the page) that he would like to sell. From what I can find, these kinds of scopes were used on the Type 99. Anyone know if the Type 38 was ever used as a sniper rifle? Mine isn't drilled or tapped, so would doing that ruin any collector value? Any idea how I can find out what a fair price would be for the scope?
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Last edited by histed; October 16, 2013 at 03:56 PM.
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Old October 15, 2013, 09:18 PM   #2
JD0x0
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I don't know of any type 38's used as sniper rifles, but apparently the Type 97 sniper is based on the type 38.
Quote:
only difference between this rifle and the original Type 38 is that it had a lightened stock, a single-action hammer, a 2.5 power telescopic sight and a mid-band setup for a monopod, although later models had this deleted.
BTW the link you posted for the scope does not work for me.
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Old October 15, 2013, 09:48 PM   #3
James K
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Yep, that link tells me I am "FORBIDDEN". (Oh, the horror of it all!)

The Type 97 sniper rifle is 6.5mm, based on the Type 38 rifle but having a longer, turned down, bolt handle and a monopod. The mount is screwed to the left side of the receiver and also has dowel pins. It has a dovetail onto which the scope top base slides and a locking device that can be released with a spring-loaded button. The scope is 2.5 power.

The Type 99 sniper rifle is much the same, but based on the Type 99 rifle. It has a larger and heavier mount to accommodate a 4-power scope. Some Type 99 top mounts were altered to use 2.5 scopes, apparently to use stocks of those that were on hand. The receivers were marked 99 type; the Type 99 sniper was apparently never given a separate adoption date.

All mounts and scopes were fitted to the rifles. Fitting a sniper base to a standard rifle would probably not be too difficult, and the bolt might be altered. The scopes came with a leather case, carrying straps and lens cleaning brush.

I have no idea what "single action hammer" means in JD0x0's quote.

In spite of tons of WWII reports of Japanese "snipers" (which was considered a dirty word and typical of the sneaky Japanese - no upright, honest, god-fearing, clean-cut American boy would shoot from ambush!!) few true sniper rifles were brought back. Apparently most, if not all, of those sneaky snipers used the plain infantry rifle.

Jim
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Old October 15, 2013, 09:50 PM   #4
tahunua001
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there was a similar rifle that was designated the type 97 arisaka which was essentially a type 38 which was scoped but I'm not sure whether they were marked differently or what method of mounting it used. however snipers are quite irregular, the concept didn't really conform to accepted japanese tactics.

and D&T will definitely damage collectors/resale value.
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Old October 15, 2013, 11:48 PM   #5
James K
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The Type 97 was standardized and marked as 97 Type on the receiver.

I am not sure why you say that sniping didn't conform to Japanese tactics. They certainly did a lot of what we call sniping in the PTO, though, as I noted they didn't seem to issue a lot of actual sniper (scope sighted) rifles.

Quite a few armchair generals believed that Japanese soldiers couldn't shoot a rifle accurately because their "slanted eyes" couldn't see straight. Those same experts assured everyone that Japanese planes were junk, that their carriers were too small to sail more than a few miles, that they were too ignorant to plan an attack, that their economy would never sustain a war, that no one could survive on Japanese army rations, that they couldn't march because their legs were crooked, that the 6.5 was no better than a .22 Short, etc., etc. Of course, those experts made sure they were nowhere near any of those "little yellow men" when the shooting started.

Jim
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Old October 16, 2013, 07:32 AM   #6
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Quote:
Those same experts assured everyone that Japanese planes were junk, ...
Excellent post.

Off topic:

Saburo Sakai shot down every type of US plane in the Pacific theater of operations. The US military brass hated the man so much they barred him from serving in the new Japanese self defense forces.

http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg...r&GRid=5942824
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Old October 16, 2013, 08:37 AM   #7
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I guess I should rephrase as the concept of sniping didn't conform to tactics accepted by the brass. when you are on a small island in the the south pacific what you think is acceptable and what some general that decides what tactics you should be using are two very different things. bonzai charges were still very prevalent all the way until close to the invasion of Saipan. sniping, to some generals, was still considered underhanded and dishonorable.
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Old October 16, 2013, 12:28 PM   #8
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It is always interesting, and if the term can be used about war, amusing, to read the ideas and propaganda put out in wartime. One ripe area is the use of submarines. Prior to US entry into the war, we put out so much propaganda about the evil German submarines sinking passenger liners and slaughtering innocent children that the Navy actually had a problem getting volunteers for our own submarines; the sailors were afraid of being pariahs at home if it were known they served in submarines. In the event, US subs sank many times more Japanese ships than they did ours. (Of course by the time US subs got into action, there were no Japanese passenger ships sailing.)

But the US was not the only nation to be told, and believe, nonsense about the enemy. It was hard for the Germans to demonize Americans because so many Americans were of German descent, but all Americans were described as Chicago gangsters, wanton killers who sprayed cities with their notorious "Tommy guns." (It apparently never occurred to Goebbels that if that were true, Americans might be the wrong people to mess with.) Roosevelt ("Rosenfeld") was portrayed either as a Jew or under the control of the evil Jewish clique on Wall Street.

The Japanese Navy told its sailors that their night time gunnery was superior to that of the Americans because the dark eyes of the Japanese could see better in the dark than the Americans' blue eyes.

And so it goes. But we have progressed. Now Americans don't hurl stupid lies and insults at wartime enemies; we hurl stupid lies and insults at each other in Washington press conferences.

Jim
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Old October 16, 2013, 04:04 PM   #9
histed
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Sorry about the link - I think its fixed now. Most of this is what I already suspected. I thought it would be cool to have a real Jap scope on a real Jap rifle, but I hate to do a Bubba. Now that reloading supplies are loosening up, I'm able to get Privi brass and shoot again. Any idea what the scope should sell for? Maybe I'll get it just because.

To those discussing WWII history, here's one to kick around. Ever wonder if Japan actually lost the war?
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Old October 16, 2013, 08:14 PM   #10
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As I understand it, some Type 38's were fitted with scopes as experiments, but the production rifles were given a new designation, Type 97. The chances of getting one of those is about nil, so I can see the temptation to put a scope on a regular Type 38. Of course the whole thing is like the joke about making rabbit stew - first, catch the rabbit. You would first need to get the scope and mounts, both the base and the rings, then have that really hard receiver drilled and tapped and pinned by someone who knows what he is doing. IMHO, the risk of having the rifle/scope/base/rings ruined in the process is too high to take a chance. But I would sure like to see that scope and what else comes with it. At any reasonable price, it would be highly desirable in itself and I think I would leave it as is and not try to put it on a Type 38 rifle.

Jim
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Old October 17, 2013, 07:03 AM   #11
histed
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Hence commeth the rub, James - "reasonable" being...?? But, I do agree with your post. I wasn't thinking of the labor and effort involved. More than drilling and tapping for an ordinary hunting rifle. If I do pick up the scope, I'll post some pics.
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Old October 17, 2013, 09:26 AM   #12
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Sniping did very much fit in with the Japanese fieldcraft (camouflage, terrain, etc.) and general tactics, but they came to the concept pretty late.

The Japanese first encountered trained snipers (Chinese trained by Germans) in China in the mid 1930s.

The effectiveness of the Chinese snipers resulted in the development of the Type 97 rifle, and in the beginning of training programs that took excellent shots and gave them further training in the Type 97 and the telescopic sights.

Supposedly there was to be one scope-equipped sniper per rifle platoon, but that apparently never came to fruition.

Most times, what Americans called "snipers" were actually just camouflaged marksmen.
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Old October 17, 2013, 10:20 PM   #13
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Good post, Mike.

As to what is a "reasonable" price. You see, histed, sometimes we "eggspurts" don't have the foggiest idea what value something has, often because the darn thing is so rare it has little or no sales record. That is the case with a Japanese sniper scope. Plus we would first have to know that it IS a WWII Japanese military sniper scope (there have been repros), and whether it has the mounts and carrying case, either of which would be high ticket items.

One scope and case did sell recently for $1021 but the base mount was not with it. A Type 99 complete with the scope, mounts and case went for $4500. My WAG would be that a 2.5 scope with both parts of the mount and the case, all in good condition would probably go for around $3000. But I don't know if that is reasonable.

You can Google "Japanese sniper scope" and see some more info and some auction results.

Jim
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Old October 18, 2013, 06:41 PM   #14
histed
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Thanks Mike - and Jim. I did try to find some scopes and they do bring some "spendy" prices. I'll pass. Jim, one of the things I do appreciate is the honesty of so many members here, just like your answer. Having figured out I was clueless... well, you know the story. "Eggspurt" or not, thanks for the help
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