View Full Version : any one have any idea what this is?

August 27, 2005, 07:02 PM
http://img268.imageshack.us/img268/249/gun8cb.jpg I'll get a photo of the other side soon, this seems to have Russian markings on the side and has only one single safety lever on the other side. No caliber markings what so ever. :) Any ideas?

August 27, 2005, 10:06 PM
What's under the blurred area above the trigger? Also, where does it eject spent cases?

Jim Watson
August 27, 2005, 10:12 PM
I will take a flying leap and suggest it is what is known as a Caodai pistol. Made by a blacksmith in Vietnam for opposition to French rule before the Communists took an interest in organizing and supplying Red rebels there.

Not of the quality of the guns of Darra in Pakistan.

August 28, 2005, 01:30 PM
looks like a homemade copy of a 1911

August 29, 2005, 11:36 AM
I doubt it's a 1911 copy as it appears to be a tip-up barrel. Perhaps a crud homemade copy of a small Beretta or some other European .32 or .25 (heel mag release)

August 30, 2005, 11:18 AM
http://img237.imageshack.us/img237/2183/stamp2aj.jpg this production stamp looks really really familiar.


August 30, 2005, 11:23 AM
it's got a production stamp, a serial number (that blurry spot), and roll markings. :cool:

August 30, 2005, 11:25 AM
When was the last time you saw a homemade weapon with manufacturer's marks and a production stamp? And let me take a wild stab at what's under the blurred area (since I blurred it): a serial number?

Where's Harley when you need him?

James K
August 30, 2005, 12:37 PM
I don't know if you count the Darra guns as "home made", but they do have markings (although they usually don't mean anything) and some have numbers that also probably don't mean anything either, but look like serial numbers.

But the Darra guns are almost always copies of regular guns. That one shows signs of being a new design, not just a copy. Interesting. I hope someone comes up with the answer.


Harley Nolden
August 30, 2005, 01:33 PM
If you were to take a #2 graphite pencil and color over the markings, this will make them appear and easier to read. Even with my glasses it is difficult. It does, to me, appear to be Russian or Slavic.

Since this thread began I have been looking in the Encyclopedia of Hand Guns by Zhuk, and found similar looking pieces, but none match exactly as this one. Maybe the other side will reveal a charecteristic that is recognizable

OTHER SIDE: Nope: Don't have the foggiest.


August 30, 2005, 02:35 PM
One thing that indicates a "one-off" hand-made item is the hand stamped lettering.

The letters are uneven, tilted at varying angles, and in a wavy line.

Odd ball pistols like this were made all over Eastern Europe and into Turkey and the Balkans.

September 2, 2005, 08:51 PM
he swears he's had that gun for over 50 years and that it was old when he got it so i may be from a time when hand stamping in factories was the norm? :confused: no ideas huh? that makes me sad.

Lawyer Daggit
September 3, 2005, 12:22 AM
Pistols like this are made throughout the third world- esp Northern India, the Phillipines. Quality varies immensely. I would have it proof shot and inspected by a gunsmith before firing it if I was you, as those guys source their steel from many unreliable sources- essentially whatever they can scavenge!

James K
September 3, 2005, 11:00 PM
Hi, Pepsquad,

I think I can pretty much guarantee that factories even back in the dark days 50 years ago used roll stamps. (How many WWII - 60 year old - guns have you seen with hand stamped markings?)

Those markings are gibberish, apparently from a batch of individual hand stamps, some of them apparently broken. It was common practice in Darra and other centers of primitive gun making to mark the guns with something that looked like factory markings. Since both the gun maker and his customers were illiterate in any language, any thing would do.


September 4, 2005, 09:36 AM
Jim, that has to be the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. There were, in fact, a great deal of production guns with HAND-STAMPED markings. This is because, and keep with me here, there were places on earth where manpower was cheaper than machinery. China, for example. Trench guns had hand-stamped markings to signify acceptance by the U.S. Army Ordnance Department. WWI U.S. dog tags were hand-stamped, as well.

I'm not sure what prompted you to post this meaningless and trite morsel of BS, but please refrain from contributing to threads where you clearly have no information to provide. Note how Harley had the tact to simply state that he did not know anything about this gun. He noted there were similar guns in Zhuk, just not this exact model. That was contributing. That was informative. Your post delves beyond the uninformative and into the rude.

September 4, 2005, 10:16 AM
Those markings are gibberish,
Really? I didn't know you were fluent in what is odviously Cyrilic based languages, all of them.
apparently from a batch of individual hand stamps, some of them apparently broken.
Um do you know what that particular alphabet looks like? How do you know if the stamps were broken, were you there when they were stamping the gun? And need I point out that the gun is over 50 years old and some wear is to be expected.
It was common practice in Darra and other centers of primitive gun making to mark the guns with something that looked like factory markings.Do you have a source for this claim?
Since both the gun maker and his customers were illiterate in any language,
Whoa that is so racist it hurts, all of my Pakistani friends can actually read and write, probably at least three lanaguages, more then me any way. And more importantly craftsman usually are at least literate as far as they need to be to function in thier craft, and more importantly Why would the markings not be in Arabic or some dirivative there of? Why Russian?
any thing would do.
Okay, even if they could not read, you apparently assume that these markings are there to be pretty, I'm fairly sure that they meant something to someone.

James K
September 4, 2005, 11:05 AM
Wow! You asked for information and several people have responded. You reject all reasonable replies, insult the responders, and appear determined to "prove" in some way that that piece of s**t is some rare and exotic gun, probably hoping to sell it to some sucker and make a lot of money.

At best it is an interesting product of primitive manufacturing (in the literal meaning of the word); it has some collector interest, but is worth, maybe, $150 on a good day.

No, I am not fluent in all languages, but I can read several and know enough of many others, including several Cyrillic alphabet languages, to be virtually certain that that marking says nothing in any of them. I beg leave to doubt the opinions of someone so ignorant of gun making that he believed hand stamping was used in factories 50 years ago.

As to racism, you are simply wrong. You seem to assume that being able to work metal is the same as being able to read; many fine craftsmen, even today, cannot read or write.

In Darra and other places, the markings were not in Arabic because they were attempts to copy the markings on the original guns. I have several "Darra" products, and all the markings are imitations of the regular markings.

If you are so sure that the markings have meaning, I can only suggest that you find speakers of languages that use the Cyrillic alphabet and show them the photos. If necessary, you can send photos of the markings to the embassies of countries that use those languages; they are usually willing to help researchers. If someone does understand and translate them, I will stand corrected and apologize. But I won't hold my breath.


September 4, 2005, 01:03 PM
So, Pepsquad,Zigokubasi, what is it(enquiring minds want to know)? Is this the only place you're doing research? That stamp that looks "familiar"? What does it remind you of? Has anyone who speaks a Slavic language looked at the pictures?

September 4, 2005, 01:41 PM
I've hit the library several times, looking at various books. Tuesday i'm going to go to the Russian department at the university I attend and start asking if someone can translate it. :) And of course several other gunboards were also asked. I figured that if I spread the picture around enough someone will have an idea. I am just morbidly curious and would like to know the history of a gun that I know nothing about.

Oh and Jim... The gun is not for sale. period.

Jim Watson
September 4, 2005, 03:39 PM
First Caodai pistol I saw a picture of had a Mauser banner trademark and "serial number" 0123456789. Chambered for 7.62 Tok, operated sort of like a 1910 Mauser (blowback) and had ONE groove rifling, so deep as to bleed off enough gas to not demolish the gun with a reasonable amount of shooting. These guys were short on tools and skill, but they were not dumb.

James K
September 4, 2005, 07:24 PM
Hi, Pepsquad,

Please accept my apology for what I said about selling the gun. That was uncalled for and I had no reason for it.

I have also been doing some research and have looked at (I think) every known alphabet in the world with no result. Yet, as I look at the pictures, I can see where you get the idea that the lettering might not be just random characters like you see on some "hand made" guns. Nor do the letters appear to be engraved, which indicates that someone made up stamps, a tedious business for a limited production gun. I considered the idea that some of the letters were upside down, but they appear to be used consistently, not in a random way.

I don't believe it is Cyrillic, though. I know Russian fairly well and while there are some letters that could be Cyrillic, many are clearly not. It is not Arabic or any of the Asian languages I can find. I thought it might be Thai, but no dice there, either.


max popenker
September 6, 2005, 09:37 AM
Ok, native Russian speaker is here ;)
And i can vouch that it is not Russian, nor any other slavic language that use Cyrillic alphabet (i.e. Bulgarian, Serb etc).
For me the lettering is plain random sequence with no sence. Sort of crypto.

Harley Nolden
September 6, 2005, 10:56 AM

Thanks for the response. Not being a language expert, I only commented on what it appeared to be. The reversed letters etc put that indicator on it, for me anyway.


September 6, 2005, 03:18 PM
Mr. Keenan I support your earlier statements and only an idiot would find anything racist in what you stated.

Mike Irwin
September 6, 2005, 07:52 PM
"Mr. Keenan I support your earlier statements and only an idiot would find anything racist in what you stated."

I find that to be completely racist.

Against the race of idiots with whom I work.

September 6, 2005, 07:53 PM
calling me an idiot? Sir?

September 7, 2005, 05:59 PM
I don't care who you are, thats funny right there.

September 7, 2005, 09:03 PM
Ah, the tried and true refuge of the cowardly - the forum alt. Tell you what, if you want to get your jollies at my friend's expense then you can deal with me, privately. I recommended Harley's forum as a resource for her to tap in IDing this gun, a decision I deeply regret considering the drooling riffraff which has invaded this thread. To those of you who contributed what information you had, you have my (and her) thanks. We're continuing to pursue other avenues to ID the gun, because for some inexplicable reason this is the only place which seems to resort to calling anything they cannot readily identify a "darra gun", as if the Pakistanis had some monopoly on low-tech and imitation firearms...

Knowing that the markings might be cyrillic but meaningless in any of the slavic languages which use that alphabet is very helpful, thank you. I understand there are other languages which share the cyrillic alphabet, such as Cyrillic Mongolian. Perhaps exploring that avenue might shed more light on this mystery.

If you want to continue the ad hominem idiocy, then a nozh scrap anytime you say.

September 7, 2005, 09:45 PM
now gentelmen this is not a forum of race, slander, or fact I guess in this case but guns and I am intreged I have no idea what this gun is nor do I atempt to figure it out but I had shot a friends germen mouser. witch his grandfather had given him he used it in some war and it was a gift to him from his grand father. at any rate it reminds me of his gun hand stamped rubish on it and no indication of its origin race or gender. however I do no the amunition was custom mad for some trimed 9mm casing or somthing

Mike Irwin
September 7, 2005, 11:14 PM

"are you

calling me an idiot? Sir?"

Do you work with me?

Do you see it to be your mission in life to make the most assinine decisions possible, guaranteed to cause the greatest amount of confusion for the least amount of gain?

Do you need to have your hand held every step of the way while constantly being stroked and told how wonderful you are?

Do you cause me leave my office every evening by running to my car, burning rubber in the parking garage and screaming out the window "I HATE YOU, YOU'RE A FRIGGING IDIOT!!!!!!!!!"

Do you suction the IQ out of the room when you walk in?

If you've answered no to any of those questions, then you've failed your idiot aptitude test.

There's hope for you. :)

September 8, 2005, 08:57 PM
More pictures are needed.

Could you remove the grips and see if anything is etched in them?

Also, IIRC, most of the older guns from other countries (and the old colts and smiths) used numbers to match the parts to the gun they were made for, not serials. We use them as serials now if they have them (but I could be wrong on this).

At first, I was thinking Star, it has some of the same charactoristics(sp, sorry) of my Star Model Super, just smaller. Grips look about the same as my originals (only smaller).

With the writing on it, I have no idea.


September 9, 2005, 07:08 PM
I have to agree that the character appear to be cyrillic, but certainly aren't Russian. I studied Russian in college, and there definitely are characters on this pistol that aren't. But, correct me if I'm wrong ( I certainly can be) Could they be Greek? What little I know about Greek, they have characters that look somewhat like the Cyrillic alphabet.

Just my 2 cents.

June 21, 2009, 10:38 PM
found the photo interesting,just wanted to know what its caliber is (was not mentioned in the original post)

June 21, 2009, 11:17 PM
Its a idiot caliber that shoots + idiots:D It kinda looks like a 1911 birth defect.

seriously though very interesting gun and what is it and I wonder just how old it really is and could it be a one of a kind.

June 21, 2009, 11:47 PM
looks like a lighter my grandfather had.

Mike Irwin
June 22, 2009, 01:43 AM
OK, no reason at all for this one to come back to life.

The OP hasn't been here in a long time, and seemed to have one heck of a chip on his shoulder.

No mention was ever made of caliber, but I would be SHOCKED to find that it was anything other that either .32 or .380 ACP.

Gonna close this one.