Nambu World: Type 14 Holster-JMCH V

            Around 1939 the Japanese changed to spring-loaded closures on their holsters. Most holsters had three springs covered with very thin leather, but this one, which is dated 1942, has four. Many sub-contractors made holsters at that time, and one or more used four springs rather than three. The holster is otherwise standard in every respect, with all brass fittings.


Here is the back showing the brass D-rings for the shoulder strap and the belt loop.


This shot shows the holster open


            This close-up shows that the central pocket in the closure has two springs instead of the standard one. This is not a manufacturing error, as the amount of leather is clearly greater than would be needed for one central spring and there is plenty of room in there for both. Such holsters, while definitely not the norm, are not strikingly rare, either. It is not clear why four springs would be used, as three seemed quite adequate. Perhaps it was a trial to see if four would work better? If so, the conclusion must have been that there was no benefit, as the later rubberized canvas holsters had the usual three springs.


            These markings are found in the usual place, in the centre of the broad flat area inside the clamshell flap. The upper right character is Sho as in Showa, the name of Emperor Hirohito’s reign. The two characters above one another in the upper left (the top one looks like a minus sign) are a one and a seven, a non-standard way of writing 17 (the standard way would be with a ten and a seven). Together they indicate the holster was made in the seventeenth year of the reign of Emperor Hirohito. Showa 17 translates into 1942 in the Western calendar. Below that in the middle is the character tsuna, meaning rope. It is probably an inspection mark. The character on the bottom seems to be the character Kyo, as in Kyoto. This may indicate the manufacturer. Unfortunately there do not seem to be good records to link these marks to the names of specific companies.


Last updated: June 19, 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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