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Old August 9, 2013, 11:25 PM   #1
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Intact Mum Arisaka, restore collectors value?

I was browsing around Gun Broker and came across an interesting offer. An all matching Arisaka with the mum still intact, and from my understanding, that is a pretty rare find.

The rifle itself looks pretty good according to the photo's, and if I were to purchase this rifle it would make for an incredible historical and cultural piece for me (Being half Japanese and all). I'm a collector, but I'm a shooter as well, and would like to be able to shoot the rifles I buy.

My question is, is this one of those rifles that you wouldn't dare touch, leaving it in the condition it was found in and letting it be or would refinishing it ruin its collectors value. I'm more inclined to believe the latter, that doing anything but leaving the rifle in its original configuration would ruin it as a collectors piece.

Keep this one in the safe, and get another one if you want to make it a project gun.

Here's the auction

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Old August 9, 2013, 11:35 PM   #2
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Refinishing would severely affect collector value.
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Old August 9, 2013, 11:46 PM   #3
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That's what I figured, I would likely pick up two rifles, keeping this one in the safe or hanging on the rack (If I were to win it), while buying a different one to go and take it out to the range.
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Old August 9, 2013, 11:55 PM   #4
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mum intact isn't really all that rare, in type 99s it only raises the value about $50 or so.

as for refinishing I am with Dpris, DON'T. it damages a lot of history and that rifle looks fairly decent as is as far as I can see. it's almost got perfect bluing, the stock is dinged but not cracked or rotten.

a good way of reducing some of the dings without removing them is to use some 0000 steel wool, followed by 100 grit sandpaper and finished with 400grit.

use a lint free rag to wipe off any excess grit or steel wool fibers and use an old rag and either linseed oil or tung oil(I use linseed and it looks very nice). you can still see the dings but they aren't so glaring.

good luck bidding.
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Old August 10, 2013, 01:28 AM   #5
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Buy it.
Shoot it.
Don't beat it up.
Don't refinish or 'restore' it.
Just let it be.
It'll still be worth more, down the road, than it is now.

As far as the dents in the stock... leave 'em be. Trying any of the normal "no damage" tricks is a guaranteed way of finding out that the "no damage" part isn't always true. Don't risk screwing the stock up. Just enjoy the looking at the life the rifle has lived, and let it be.

As tahuna mentioned - An intact 'Mum isn't necessarily 'rare'. It's just less common that defaced 'mums, and more desirable to collectors/enthusiasts.
"Such is the strange way that man works -- first he virtually destroys a species and then does everything in his power to restore it."
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Old August 10, 2013, 04:44 AM   #6
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If the steel butt plate is too abusive for you, you can either use a slip on recoil pad or make up light cast bullet loads.

All the Arisaka rifles I've had have been good shooters and they're the reason I got into reloading in the first place.

I have one type 99 that has the mum intact and has been fully sporterized and it's one good looking hunting rifle. Most folks don't know what it is at first glance...

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Old August 10, 2013, 07:28 AM   #7
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Dings in wood can be reduced by careful use of a steam iron. The steam causes the wood fibers to swell toward their original condition.
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Old August 10, 2013, 10:55 AM   #8
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Type 99

Ive had quite a few 99s over the years. I have 1 that is intact. That one stays in a gun case. I have been able to find able to find the bayonet,ammo belt,muzzle cover, and barrel cover, either repo or origanial, on ebay, to make it as issued. I found a sporterized one in a pawn shop for 150.00 dollars. This one is a "last ditch". That has been a fine hunting rifle and I have no problem sporterizing these rifles. I dont think there value is as high as a early one. There just as strong just not as well finished.
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