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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Was at the local store and found an Arisaka type 99 with intact "Mum" for $300 GI1 . Looks like it has been stored and never used as it has cosmoline in most places. Bore is pristine, chromed and was told it is in the original 7.7x58 chambering . There is some wear on the dust cover and the wood has the usual dings from military issue guns. It came with what looks like and original leather sling with Japanese characters on it, but it is in sad shape, all dry, hard and cracking. I am still working on decyphering the markings. Anyone have any experience with these? I got it for my WWII collection, now I need to get me a SMLE in original configuration to round out the major combatants.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Soak the sling in some Peckard's. Being a WWII reenactor, I have brought a lot of old leather back to life with this stuff.

http://www.pecard.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=CTGY&Store_Code=Pecard&Category_Code=antique-dress

Thanks for the advice but I am not sure the sling can be removed. It does not have the quick detach hooks and has been left on the swivel during storage, really dry and brittle some of it has started to disintegrate.. Would mink oil help maybe, to soften and moisten it? I will look for the suggested product at a local feed and tackle shop that is close by also. One funny thing is that is looks like leather wrapped around cotton as far as construction. It does have Japanese markings on it so I think it was issue and not reproduction.
 

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I doubt whatever you do to the sling would ever bring it back to the point you could use it. I think at this point you would want to preserve it best you can. I am not sure it thats what members were suggesting.
 

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I've tried Picard's,Mink Oil, etc. over the years but have had my best results with Sno-Seal, which is odor-free and cheapest. The pre-civil war sling on my 1855 Springfield came back beautifully, as have scores of cartridge pouches, cap pouches, holsters, and a Mexican war dragoon's belt. My crowning achievement with Sno-Seal is the restoration of my complete (down to the original stitching) Confederate Georgia pattern holster. This product is probably the cheapest, doesn't stink, buffs-up, and won't darken the stitching on Luger holsters. I used it to restore the minty, original 1851 Navy holster in the Scott Meadows collection.
 

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Good Mums are hard to find! ALCOHOLIC1

My Dad brought back two Arisaka’s around feb 1946 from a storage depot in Tokyo Bay. The Mum’s were ground. He claimed the Japanese did this. I suspect they did.

A couple of years ago I was talking to one of our Gun Club’s last WW2 Veterans, Sammy. I mentioned a Japanese Paratrooper rifle at the range and asked Sammy if he had ever met any Japanese Paratroopers. Sammy said he was very glad not to have made their acquaintance. I mentioned condition and that it had an intact Mum.

Sammy said: “How did that get in?”

So I followed up.

When Sammy came back from the Pacific, and Sammy is a second wave survivor* of Iwo and Okinawa, he had a duffle bag of trophies.

His ship landed at San Pedro California. All the enlisted men were required to open their duffle bags for inspection. Sammy said there was a big pile of grenades and land mines off to one side , dance2 if you had a rifle you could keep it, but you had to get in line to have the Mum’s ground off.

All his rifles had their Mums ground off by Americans on American soil. All Sammy knew it was because of an agreement we had with the Japanese.

* Sammy does not want to talk about the war, does not want to be reminded about it, says he still has nightmares.
 

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Since I started trading them back in the 50's (at $5/per), the prevailing belief regarding ground mums was that it was done by the US Army, almost exclusively. The many examples of Jap rifles that I have owned with verifiable Marine Corps provenance did not have the mums even scratched. This was later verified by the WWII Marines I served with when I asked about grinding mums. Their typical response was: Why? My present Type 99 range rifle was brought home by a Marine from Okinawa and is complete with monopod, complete bayonet, airplane sights, matching dust cover, muzzle cover and Type 96/99 machine gun sling. Like all previous Marine Corps captures I've owned, the mum is intact. It is also a Nagoya arsenal 5th Series with chrome bore and bolt face.
 

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On the leather sling neatsfoot oil is the way to go. Used it on lots of saddles harness and tack. The trick is to use many light coats. Until it is supple. You dont want to saturate it. It will bring it back to its former glory but may darken it a bit. Hope this helps.
 

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No question that neatsfoot oil will work on new tack, but trust the advice of antique leather guys because it's an entirely different field. Neatsfoot darkens and gives off an odor, which are the least desirable results when working with antique leather. Before I knew better, I treated an Allen conversion sling with neatsfoot and the guy's wife made him return it due to the odor. I trade Heiser holsters and tack and the surest way to turn a $500 holster into a $200 item is to use neatsfoot or pecards. Sno-Seal doesn't smell or darken and it will buff to a gloss. For whatever reason, Jap leather slings typically didn't age well and I have civil war musket slings in better condition than most Jap slings I see at shows.
 

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Congrats on a great find. I've been looking for a Type 99 with an intact mum for quite some time. I found one recently on a rifle locally but unfortunately the rifle was sporterized. Doh!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Well, thanks for all the advice on the sling. MY first worry is to remove it from the rifle. Although the sling is interesting it is not my first priority. Right now everything is in my safe awaiting a time when I can play with it a bit. I look for all the products mentioned and make my selection accordingly. From what has been said I am likely to go for the Sno-Seal. The last thing I need is to stink up the house.

If I get a chance I will take some photos.
 

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I owned a type 99 about 25 yrs ago it was a bringback from Kusai island. The rifle was 100% intact, mum, dust cover, monopod etc. The G.I. that brought it back had carved his name and where it came from into the stock. I did not keep it long because at the time i could not find ammo for it. I wish i would have kept that rifle.GI9
 

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7.62,

Using a clean cotton cloth, you can probably apply the Sno-Seal without removing the sling. If it were mine, I'd get some moisture back into it before anything else. Jap slings are getting expensive and tears don't heal. Good luck with it!
 

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I have an Arisaka Type 99, it was my grandfathers that he sent home. Still has the 'Mum intact! Although it is missing the mag-well parts. Still has the dust cover and all the markings!
 

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Among the Arisaka 99's I have in my collection, I lucked into a bringback that is a nice complete all matching one with an intact mum a few years ago.
Everything is on it, monopod, bolt dust cover and even the aircraft sights.
 

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That sounds like a nice piece. No Japanese rifles in my collection yet. I have been resisting acquiring another caliber.....so far.
 

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I used to buy them from vets when I was in my teens. They were the only militaries I could afford and Hy Hunter had cheap WWII Jap military ammo. 7.7 was hard to find but there was plenty of 6.5. Hang-fires and split casings were common and it was otherwise terrible stuff that smelled like sewage when fired, but we had fun anyway. A box of 8mm Nambu was worth more than the pistol. Anyone collecting Jap stuff didn't get a lot of respect in those days. Saving up for my first Luger seemed to take a lifetime.
 
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