Japanese box?


#1

Hi
I wanted to know if someone has information
on the origin of this box
the cartridge is 7,7 x 58 SR Arisaka Type 92
total 7 pcs., ordinary ball red annulus in the mouth

the figures on the side are:
(draw) 82 39

the date on the back is: 1939

Thanks for every information
Giovanni

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#2
  • @ Giovanni: All I can say to you is that the symbol of the Japanese Emperor is that chrysanthemum which has 16 petals. The receiver of the Japanese rifles manufactured for the Imperial Japanese Army has stamped the same symbol. Liviu 01/28/08

#3

This box doesn’t look like any Japanese box I have ever seen for ammunition of any caliber. It is highly unusual for the Seal of the Emperor, the 16-petal Cherry Blossom, to appear on a box. That seal was sacred to the Japanese and not used lightly. In fact, on weapons, at the end of the war, it was agreed that any taken as souvenirs by the allies would have that seal removed from the weapon. That’s why you see so many Japanese rifles with the seals either scarred or ground completely off. Rifles taken by individual soldiers in combat usually have the seals intact, unless a Japanese soldier did his best to deface it knowing he was either going to die or be captured.

The model number as shown on the box, by the way, is Type 99, not Type 92.

Are the markings “7.7 Arisaka” on the original printing of the box, or have those been added by someone later? I do not see the Japanese marking a box that way, either in the Western Alphabet, or even by that name. Even the quantity of rounds is odd, if I read it right - 7 rounds? A rifle holds 5 rounds, and the machineguns more of course, in magazines or other charging devices.

A real odd box, and I have to admit, without provenance, I would have a strong feeling that it is not original. Like with anything you haven’t seen before, I could be very, very wrong in that gut feeling, but it sure is an odd one.


#4

Carefully looking at the label, the Mum and “99 Shiki” marks are a replica of what one sees on the rifle receiver;
the “Arisaka 7,7x58” is done in Typewriter Font;
The label looks like a wrapper holding the packet togewther…a style of packaging used a lot in “Re-packs”.

My WOG (Way-Out Guess) is that this is a Post-war repack, probably by a country which had large quantities of Rifles and ammo left over by re-patriating Japanese.

Several countries spring to mind, which would be familiar with a Western Type Font, such as Burma, Indonesia, Malaya (as it then was) and the Philippines.

The Greatest use of Ex-Japanese equipment was in Indonesia, followed by Burma (which actually ordered 6,5mm ammo Post-war from Japan).

Another source could be Repacked ammo in Japan, for the ROK training units, at the outset of the Korean War; they were using 7,7 T99 rifles (until the conversion to .30/06).

I would say that the Inclusion of the Mum and Kanji were for
Identif
ication of the rifle and correct ammo for it, rather than as a “Japanese Imperial Symbol”…to aid an otherwise probably illiterate Korean (or other Asian) soldier to put the right ammo in his piece.

The Chinese did this going back to the mid 1800s…Rifles were sometimes known by their cartridges, and so marked…ei, 7,9 Rifles (Mausers et al) were Marked" For “Infantry Supply 79” (meaning “Munitions 7,9mm cal.”.

Typical examples are the Type 38 copies called the Type 6-5, and the T38s rebored to 7,9 called the “Type 7-9” (both were so marked on the receiver rings).

Regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics


#5

[quote=“Giovanni”]Hi HELLO GIOVANNI, ITS YOUR FRIEND JOE FROM THE USA, I JUST JOINED THE IAA A FEW DAYS AGO, YOUR BOXES COULD BE EITHER KYOTO OR NYGOYA ARSENAL NOT SURE WHICH ONLY A GUESS, THE JAPANESE DIDNT WANT THERE ENEMIES KNOWING WHERE THERE AMMO CAME FROM FOR FEAR OF BOMBING, BUT IM SURE THAT MOST PEOPLE KNOW THAT
I wanted to know if someone has information
on the origin of this box
the cartridge is 7,7 x 58 SR Arisaka Type 92
total 7 pcs., ordinary ball red annulus in the mouth

the figures on the side are:
(draw) 82 39

the date on the back is: 1939

Thanks for every information
Giovanni

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#6

In my opinion if any other countries such as Burma, Thailand, the Philippines, etc., repacked this ammunition it would be labeled in their language. why would any country (official sources) try to replicate some sort of Japanese language label?

Also, the Mum is a sacred symbol, or was at that time (probably still is, but I don’t know that) to the Japanese and was not used lightly. It identified the rifle as property of the IMperial Japanese Government and gave honor to it, so much so, that MacArthur agreed to allow the defacing of the mum on rifles taken as souvenirs at the end of the war, to avoid more “dishonor” to the Japanese.

While most Koreans spoke or had some familiarity with Japanese at the period of the Korean War, I don’t see them replicating a package for the use of their troops in Japanese Arms, in the Japanese language. With their new found freedom after WWII from 40 years of Japanese oppression, there was no love for the Japanese in Korea, and this just would not make any sense at all, in my mind.

I suspect that it is either a replica box made purely for reasons of sale (some would call it a fake), or an original box of a pattern not seen often. I have never seen such a box style for any caliber of ammunition from Japan, nor is any pictured in Ken Elk’s book or any other source in my library.

Regarding secrecy, Japanese box labels well known to students coninued to display the Arsenal Mark, not the Imperial Symbol of the Cherry Blossom, until very, very late in 1945. Some Navy box labels appear not to have an arsenal mark at all, but there is no substitution using the Imperial symbol.
There is zero evidence of any over-all attempt to sterilize ammunition packaging as to the Arsenal Symbol during the war, right to the end. It is quite possible that the symbols for the arsenals themselves were military secrets - that is, the meaning of each particular symbol, but I don’t know that myself. Bear in mind, by the way, that the United States, a major player in WWII of course, headstamped and packaged ammunition with the initials or the name of the company that produced it. the Germans chose the secrecy route for military equipment to be used outside of the borders of Germany with a coding system, while police items for use in Germany were marked, until at least late in the war, with the full commercial names of the makers. Not every country reacted to the secrecy querstion at the same level.

No one has addressed the marking in the Western alphabet of “Arisaka 7.7 etc.” in red, except to say that it is a typewriter font, with which I agree, and therefore would have to have been applied before the cartridges were wrapped, or they would have had to have been unwrapped, the notation added, and rewrapped. The use of the Western alphabet and the name “Arisaka” in this fashion would be unprecedented on Japanese ammuniton labels as far as I know. Arisaka’s name was not part of the Official Designation of either the rifles or the ammunition, to my knowledge.
This part of the label makes no sense at all in the cntext of original Japanese ammunition.

I am not willing to rule out originality, despite the nonsensical quantity of seven rounds in the package, for a five-round rifle, but my strongest feeling is still that this package is, kindly said, a replica.