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Captured North Vietnamese Jungle-made .45


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#1 Tom Kibler

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 08:36 AM

I recently posted this in another forum. This is bittersweet. A dear friend of mine recently passed away and his family wanted me to have this jungle made 1911. He relayed the story to me about how he captured it in January 1970 from a dead North Vietnamese soldier, after a firefight. He carried it for the duration of his tour.

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#2 suwanneetrader

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 08:42 AM

Could we see any markings on the M1911.?   Did you say it was made in the Jungle?   Richard



#3 Tom Kibler

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 08:51 AM

There is a random number just forward the barrel retention pin. I believe it is a number that was copied from the example of the 1911 copied. These are referred to Austin as jungle made handguns or North Vietnamese manufactured pieces. Several I have seen are very crude. This is one of the finer examples of craftsmanship. There are no other markings.

The frame is not a solid piece and is braised together.

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#4 Tom Kibler

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 08:58 AM

https://m.youtube.co...h?v=MLjnR29-aiI

The above link shows a nearly identical example, probably made at the same facility as the one that I recently acquired

#5 Tom Kibler

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 09:00 AM

This image shows the underside of the frame, the seam and the cross hatched braise links that hold the lower frame together.

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#6 Tom Kibler

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 09:01 AM

Here is a photo of the grip area. Look closely and you will see the safety is non-functioning, the crude file marks and the fact that all of the pieces are hand formed and not machine manufactured.

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#7 Tom Kibler

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 09:03 AM

If you examine the backstrap, you can see that multiple individual pieces were fitted together to form the hammer mechanism and grip safety. Noticed that hand filed vertical grooves.

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#8 Tom Kibler

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 09:09 AM

Here is an image of my recently passed friend, wearing this weapon outside of Danang in early 1970.

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#9 Tom Kibler

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 09:12 AM

Interestingly enough, the barrel on this example is also a smoothbore, just like the one in the linked video.

#10 GIKyle

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 09:19 AM

Sorry about losing your friend,. Tom. 



#11 m1ashooter

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 09:21 AM

Wow.  Interesting piece of history.



#12 Tom Kibler

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 09:24 AM

Sorry about losing your friend,. Tom. 



Thanks

#13 Brian D

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 10:00 AM

Sorry about your friend Tom.

About the pistol, I find it very interesting and cool that you posted it on here.  I have read about both handmade pistols and rifles coming out of Vietnam and the surrounding region but it is very rare to see one.  One has to wonder how many of these weapons are out there as capture/bring backs?  I would think that it would take some time to hand craft a pistol like this all by hand!  Very interesting and thanks for sharing it here with us!



#14 green hell

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 11:06 AM

Tom -

          What an amazing relic. To me, a piece like this is what collecting is all about. I have a struck Tokarev (sadly, no provenance with it), but truthfully, I think this pistol is way cooler. My deepest sympathies on your friend's passing. I am so glad that you are here to cherish and care for this wonderful souvenir, a part of his legacy. I am also glad that you were able to get the story from him. It's so important that history like this is not lost. All my best to you, sir - Chris

 

PS - what is the metal object with fins in the first photo?


Edited by green hell, 13 February 2020 - 11:11 AM.


#15 Tom Kibler

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 12:11 PM

It's actually a flare tube.  The action/firefight he was engaged in he likened to the ambush scene (of all movies - Forrest Gump).  He saved the flare tube, took the weapon and holster (and belt which is lost to time) and received an "award" for the engagement.  The award is NOT to be confused with a decoration.  Apparently is was some sort of in-house award for combat action.  The bayonet was his also and I was able to acquire it as well.  



#16 Garandomatic

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 12:31 PM

UNBELIEVABLY COOL

#17 suwanneetrader

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 12:45 PM

UNBELIEVABLY COOL

 

I second the above.  Amazing what some people from 3rd World Countries and the like have  and do make with few tools and scavenged materials  Richard
 



#18 11thcavsniper

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 02:48 PM

Thanks for sharing. The family must of thought well of you to pass this on. Nice Pistol. I believe the Cao Dai made some pretty nice Jungle Shop weapons. It would be interesting to know if your friend ever fired this one.



#19 mikie

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 03:02 PM

I'll add my sympathy for your friend passing.  

 

Considering that he carried it for the rest of his tour, it must be a well made gun for him to rely on it like that. 

 

Mike    



#20 gwb123

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 03:49 PM

This would be a great item to post on our World Militaria Forum.  We would like to build up content there and this would be a great item to add.



#21 Tom Kibler

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 05:15 PM

Thanks to all. I’m honored to be the custodian of these things & to honor his memory.

#22 SARGE

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Posted 14 February 2020 - 07:32 AM

Just outstanding!



#23 painter777

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Posted Yesterday, 06:46 PM

First Bless his service.

Sorry for the loss of a friend.

The pistol reminds me of a video I seen about the gun markets in Pakistan. Amazing what skilled people can pull off with scrap steel and a file.

 

 

 

VR,

Charlie-Painter777

 



#24 everforward

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Posted Today, 03:10 AM

So sorry about your friend, and certainly an interesting spoil your buddy brought back from VN. Id have to wonder what it’s like to shoot as well.....



#25 Garandomatic

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Posted Today, 04:23 AM

Wondered that myself... does it cycle?


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    everforward, 6th.MG.BN