5/8/18 - This is an excellent example of a fairly rare variation of the Japanese Type 44 cavalry carbine. The mum is fully intact and sharp, and all parts are correctly numbered and matching. The minty finish on the metal and stock are original and there are no import markings. The appropriate small parts have a straw finish which is still very strong, and the magazine follower has a nice fire-blue finish. The stock has not been sanded and has two sharp inspection characters on the underside. There are the typical bruises and dings along with a small tight crack emanating from the top buttplate screw, but no other cracks or chips. The screw slots are all nice and sharp. The bore is excellent with bright, sharp and shiny rifling. The cleaning rod assembly is not present. What makes this rare is being a Kokura Arsenal "no series" with the long 3rd variation bayonet housing, of which roughly 3,700 were made. Based on data in Frank Allan's "Type 38 Arisaka" book, the known serial numbers for this variation are between 65488 to 69159, and this (66674) falls neatly in that range. The parts are numbered in accordance with the description in Allan's book, as follows: last three digits of the serial number (674) appear on the bolt handle, end of the safety knob, the magazine floor plate, and the bayonet housing. The three digit assembly number (335) is stamped under the receiver, on the bolt stop latch, extractor, upper and lower tang, trigger, trigger guard, the side of the magazine box, and the barrel channel of the upper and lower stock. The firing pin (striker) is proofed but not numbered, which is correct. The bayonet release button has an unrelated number (160) stamped on it. The rear sight assembly also has an unrelated number (4) on the base and the adjusting button. Both of these numbers are consistent with Allan's analysis. This variation doesn't come up for sale often, and the most recent example in similar condition sold for $4500 (see the interesting discussion on GunBoards).