Recent Find A Treasure Trove At The Flea Market!

James N.

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That is a kick in the shins by an angry 12 year old with steel toe boots if I ever heard it!

I don't know if I ever mentioned it before, but my biggest regret was at a gun show. I was 15, and there with my Dad, and I saw a 5 1/2 inch barreled Colt Bisley in beautiful shape. The guy only wanted $200 because it was made after 1900 and a "worthless 2nd Generation" (the guy had absolutely NO clue how Colt collecting works). I begged my Dad for a loan of $200, which he being the sort that still lived in the 1960's on gun values, said no. Actually he said I could get it if I talked him down to like $50, and even that was too much money.

We got home I showed him on the early 2000's internet what those sold for and he about had a heart attack! But we couldn't go back as it was Sunday and the show was over. I got my first job shortly afterwards....
On the other side of this equation, about ten years ago at one of the last Dallas Market Hall gun shows I attended, I bought from a teenager a Japanese Arisaka for $160 that should've been considerably more, especially since it still had the chrysanthemum on the barrel and had never been "scrubbed".
 

Rusk County Avengers

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Apr 8, 2018
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Coffeeville, TX
On the other side of this equation, about ten years ago at one of the last Dallas Market Hall gun shows I attended, I bought from a teenager a Japanese Arisaka for $160 that should've been considerably more, especially since it still had the chrysanthemum on the barrel and had never been "scrubbed".

With WW2 my experience is, if it ain't an M1 or K98 its junk to most folks. Especially the Carcano's...

But $160 for an Arisaka like that is almost criminal. About as criminal as the Lee No. 4 from Savage I used to have a guy traded it and $120 to me for a used Rock Island 1911 I had for sale. I miss that rifle... I won a $500 bet between me and a cousin and his so awesome scoped .223 Remington shooting at a target 400 yards off. He insisted that "worthless" .303 bullet wouldn't go that far as it was too big a bullet and no one could hit a target that far off without a scope.

But it was stock and I couldn't keep it. Now I remember why I stopped getting tables at gun shows.
 

Waterloo50

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It's certainly true that things like this pile have become fewer and farther between, but there is still gold among the piles and piles of dross. I try to look for a wide variety of things, mostly military and not usually from the Civil War. One recent exception however was the Burnside carbine I purchased and pictured here last fall. It wasn't a particularly fine specimen or especially cheap, but it was both reasonable at $650 and a representative example of something I'd never owned before. I've naturally had better luck with WWI and WWII pieces, including German and Japanese rifles and assorted militaria. Due to the proliferation of fakes in those areas, I tend to prefer humbler items of less-faked field gear such as canteens, binoculars, etc. I even found a suitcase-sized carrier for stick smoke hand grenades and an actual 1944-dated "jerrycan", plus helmet shells in various condition.
James, I think you should look out for a bloke called Bruce Crompton, he’s in a British TV show called ‘Combat Dealers. There’s quite a few episodes and clips on YouTube. It’s a show that I think you’d really enjoy.
 

James N.

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While not as exciting (or as cheap!) as the trove in the OP I thought I'd share this month's find as well: a Federal cap pouch which included the wiper appendage inside! I already had one of each of these, but these are different.

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The inner flap of the cap pouch is nicely marked Hoover Calhoun & Co - New York; according to Francis Lord's Civil War Collector's Encyclopedia this company was also a known maker of cavalry cartridge boxes.

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The outer surface has some expected leather flaking and chipping but is complete, including the wool insert which is missing from my other example; unfortunately the nipple pick is missing though. All stitching is sound and there are no tears in the leather.

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The "new" wiper is pictured here below on the left alongside my other one; they are obviously different sizes, for .69 and .58 calibers respectively. It also screws down nicely on the ramrod for my M.1840 musket - the threads on my M.1842 are too worn down!
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