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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I know it is Ithaca but it looks rather original and it is marked D44. Have a look! And just in case you know what D44 stands for... cry out, post it. I have been asking around for years.
There have been a few other pistols with this marking. But no one could offer an explanation.
Rack Number? But why just those Ithacas with D44
Ship (Destroyer) Nr. 44 ???
It looks as if it was put on the gun before parkerizing...and it looks as if it was done by hand and not by a ready made single stamp.

Peter
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I'm not a 1911A1 expert, but there are some here. I'd guess an assembly number or date, nothing to do with a destroyer, whose code was "DD" not "D".
 

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+1 ^^^^
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
I'm not a 1911A1 expert, but there are some here. I'd guess an assembly number or date, nothing to do with a destroyer, whose code was "DD" not "D".
An assembly number.??..no one in all the literature on the 1911A1 mentions such an assembly number.
My first step would be to find out, if the finish of this pistol is the factory finish???? The receiver looks originial...but could the slide be refinished so that the later added " D44" is covered by the re-finish? Please have a look at the slide and at the additional picture of the receiver.

Many years ago a friend mentioned the possibility of a British Cruiser - HMS Danae (D44). Look it up!... the story is interesting.
But I always thought that the British (like us Germans) stamped everything they got with some kind of acceptance mark (think of those Battle of Britain Colts).

This is what I found on a French forum (Member manu03):
Petites synthèse des marquages D?4
Toujours rien sur d'autres lettres et/ou autres chiffres.
Points communs: passage en arsenal + "D"x"4".

Donc:
  • 1 colt 1911A1 ( NS 929xxx - remontage): D24
  • 1 Remington UMC 1911 (NS 1294 - "model of 1911 army caliber 45" - marquage de Frankford Arsenal ): D24
  • 1 colt 1911 ou 1911A1 (marquage RIA): D34
  • 1 colt 1911A1 (NS 807144): D34
  • 1 colt 1911A1, (#22868XX, GHD): D34
  • 1 Ithaca 1911A1 (NS 1215xxx + FJA): D44
  • 1 Remingtond Ran 1911A1: D44
  • 1 colt (NS 1381xxx + remontage colt 1911 / 1911A1 Remington Rand): D54
  • 1 colt 1911 (marquage AA – NS 344245 – année 1918): D64
  • 1 colt 1911A1 (ou mixte): D84
  • 1 Remington Rand 1911A1 (FJA + NS 986xxx): D84

Peter

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I think we can say with certainty the D44 is not a reference to a destroyer. D44 would have been a pre WWI ship and would have been sent to the scrap heap circa 1919 - 1921. The 'DD' designation was not used before the mid 1920s. Prior to that single letters were used... e.g. the USS Texas was a battle ship B2 (the present museum ship was not built until 1914.)
t
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I think we can say with certainty the D44 is not a reference to a destroyer. D44 would have been a pre WWI ship and would have been sent to the scrap heap circa 1919 - 1921. The 'DD' designation was not used before the mid 1920s. Prior to that single letters were used... e.g. the USS Texas was a battle ship B2 (the present museum ship was not built until 1914.)
t
You are right. But I am talking about a British ship. And they were more thrifty than the Americans. HMS Danae (D44), a light cruiser, served from 1918 until 1946...she did nothing very famous. Please have a look at my post no. 4. There are other numbers like D44 on 1911A1 pistols... But on the other hand I have never seen anything that proves that handguns got a ships number as markings in Britain. The British are very peculiar with their markings. I think it was something else! But what??????
 

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This is one of the unsolved mysteries of M1911 and M1911A1 collecting. I doubt there is any British connection since none of them that I'm aware of show any British markings. It is also interesting that the middle character changes but the D and the last 4 are consistent.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Kwill, do not discourage us... If I can not find the answer I will try again in a few years...
Do you think these slides have been refinished??? This is the first step. As otherwise the numbers could be factory-applied. To me they look as if stamped before the slides were parkerized. But this is a question fo someone who knows a bit more...
 

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Peter, I'm never one to discourage the pursuit of new information. Most of these examples have been refinished and some are mismatched with respect to slides and frames. They are clearly hand stamped and the fonts vary. That's about all we can say at this point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Peter, I'm never one to discourage the pursuit of new information. Most of these examples have been refinished and some are mismatched with respect to slides and frames. They are clearly hand stamped and the fonts vary. That's about all we can say at this point.
Kwill, I know that you enjoy digging for results!!! Please have a long look at my No. 1213878. I do not think that the receiver is refinished. It is an ithaca serial number so it does not - at first sight - indicate a mismatched pistol. In 2007 Herman Historica auctioned (Los N. 1246) a 1911A1 Serial No. 1251335 with a Colt slide - and this slide was also marked D44. This pistol was used by the German military after WWII.
 

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I have never seen nor owned an M1911 with D44 printed on the slide, and I think that for now those marks (D34 D44, D54) remain some sort of a mystery; in any case I don't think it has anything to do with British proof markings.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Sergio, you are right. (and I really like your two lines at the end!!!) My argument was D44 is no British marking as those pistols have no other British markings... and the British mark everything (like we Germans did). Whereas the French did not bother to that extend. Look at a French Colt Government pistol from WWI. They have not the smallest mark showing that they served in France. I have one...

But mysteries have to be solved. And the combined members of this forum really know a lot!!!
 

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It's intriguing that all these D something have the 4 as the final number.
So far we know that is not a British Proof mark, FWIK I don't think it's a proof mark anyway, is not an assembler's mark either, nor an arsenal rework stamp . . .
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
It's intriguing that all these D something have the 4 as the final number.
So far we know that is not a British Proof mark, FWIK I don't think it's a proof mark anyway, is not an assembler's mark either, nor an arsenal rework stamp . . .
Just to get more fun into this discussion... look at Kwills "D 24": The D has been stamped on the gun before the finish was applied, the 24 was stamped later.. this is really tricky. Maybe Putin does this to keep our brains occupied???
 

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Just to get more fun into this discussion... look at Kwills "D 24": The D has been stamped on the gun before the finish was applied, the 24 was stamped later.. this is really tricky. Maybe Putin does this to keep our brains occupied???
I would agree they look different in that photo but I think it is difficult to say conclusively that the D is under and the 24 is over the finish. It is a low resolution and out of focus picture. Here's another D24 on a mismatched pistol. Interestingly, it has a twist: this one was auctioned with a DCM receipt showing that it was still in U.S. military inventory.
 

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Unlike the hull numbers on U.S. ships in the WWII ear the British used 'pendant' numbers which were not uniform between types of ships... For example a lot of RN destroyers had "H" pendant numbers, but RN destroyers used lots of other pendant prefixes.

Dane was one of eight "D" class light cruisers built around the end of WWI, which were preceded by several "C" class cruisers and followed by three (only two completed) 'E" class light cruisers. After the 'E" class the RN went to names rather than alphabetically successive class letters except for destroyers which used successive letter ranges for destroyers well into WWII.

FWIW

Chuck



You are right. But I am talking about a British ship. And they were more thrifty than the Americans. HMS Danae (D44), a light cruiser, served from 1918 until 1946...she did nothing very famous. Please have a look at my post no. 4. There are other numbers like D44 on 1911A1 pistols... But on the other hand I have never seen anything that proves that handguns got a ships number as markings in Britain. The British are very peculiar with their markings. I think it was something else! But what??????
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I would agree they look different in that photo but I think it is difficult to say conclusively that the D is under and the 24 is over the finish. It is a low resolution and out of focus picture. Here's another D24 on a mismatched pistol. Interestingly, it has a twist: this one was auctioned with a DCM receipt showing that it was still in U.S. military inventory.
I think it gets really tricky! I go to bed now and start to think again on Monday... My D44 is under the finish... The 1911A1 with D44 that was sold by Herman Historica and was used by the German Bundeswehr and probably came right from the US Army before it was passed on to the German Army....
 

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Could it have something to do with metallurgy, as in the hardness of steel..? This is just a hunch, and I have no evidence, but I have seen numbers like this in determining the hardness of steel....I apologize in advance if it leads the curious on a wild goose chase. :)
 
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