Nambu World: Type 14 Holster-JMCH Type III

            The Type III seems to be the most common of the Type 14 holsters with the solid leather closure strap. I have two of these holsters, an early one dated 1936 (below left) and a later one dated 1939 (below right).

           

            Letfs start with the earlier one. This holster is in good shape, though the lower portion is discoloured (much darker), perhaps from being oiled at some point. It is dated 1936 inside and has Nagoya markings. I bought it on eBay for US$125 in late August, 2003. Here is the front. If you compare it to the later one by looking at the photo above you will notice that the clamshell on this one is slightly narrower with more pronounced curvature on the edges of the clamshell.

 

This is the back, showing the square rings.

 

This view of the holster with the clamshell open shows the pouch for two 15-round boxes of ammo and the pocket for the striker.

 

          Here are the markings that appear on the inside of the clamshell somewhere around the middle. The character in the upper left is the sho in gShowah. It is poorly struck and really only the top portion of the character is visible. The next two characters that look like a plus sign and a minus sign are g10h and g1h. Combined the three indicate gShowa 11h, or 1936. In the lower left is the symbol of Nagoya arsenal, a circle with a small circle in the centre bottom and a larger circle balanced on that. The intention was for this to imitate the shachi, or gdolphinsh that adorn the ends of the roof of Nagoya castle, Nagoyafs most famous landmark (destroyed during the war but rebuilt as a ferro-concrete replica housing a museum). The second character in the bottom row is the character gmeih, or gNah, the first character in gNagoyah. It is an inspection mark.

 

          Here you can see the end of the cleaning rod in its slot at the left of the photo (rear of the holster when worn) and the spare firing pin/striker.

 

          This one shows the ammo pouch open. Original, sealed ammo boxes are scarce and valuable. There is a guy who sells repro ammo boxes on eBay all the time.

 

          Here is a close-up of the closure. Note that the rivet heads on the left and right are closer to the bottom than the top. Apparently most reproductions have the rivets spaced half way between top and bottom. If you compare it to the earlier types you will also notice that the brass plate is flat with no thin decorative line around the edge like the Types I, IA and II had.

 

            Here is the other Type III holster I have. It has a more pleasing, even reddish-brown colour all over. Both holsters are in very nice, solid shape, though.

 

Here is the back. The strap rings are square and made of brass.

 

With the clamshell flap open you can see the inside with the ammo pouch and the pocket for the spare striker immediately to the right of it.

 

            A close-up of the flap on the ammo pouch shows that the shape of the pouch is different from the earlier Type III shown above. On this later one the right side of the ammo pouch flap has now been extended to cover the spare striker pocket.

 

            Here is a side-by-side comparison photo so you can see the difference. The left side shows the early holster with a narrow ammo pouch flap that covers only the ammo pouch. The right side shows the later holster with the wider ammo pouch flap that covers the spare striker pocket as well. I just learned how to combine two photos into one like this.

 

            The markings in the centre of the inside of the clamshell flap are a bit faint, but can be read from right to left: Sho (short for Showa) 14. Showa 14, the 14th year of the reign of Emperor Hirohito, was 1939. Below that is an inspection mark.

 

            On the hinge that joins the clamshell flap to the body of the holster is a pen marking that has been obscured with black ink. It is illegible but appears to have been written in Roman letters (i.e. English). It was probably the name of the US soldier who brought it back as a trophy. They often marked their souvenirs with their names to avoid conflicts over what belonged to whom.

 

The plate on the closure strap of this holster also lacks the decorative line around the edge.

 

 

Last updated: June 18, 2006. All contents are copyright Teri unless otherwise specified and may not be used elsewhere in any form without prior permission.

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