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GUNS Magazine September 2012 Digital Edition - Page 16

STORY: Mike “Duke” Venturino PHOTOS: Yvonne Venturino Sometimes, it’s about the unexpected. duke’s LuCk Part ii B ack in the February issue, I detailed my almost phenomenal luck in finding a proper World War II vintage German scope complete with proper low turrettype mounts. It was needed to complete an original German K98k rifle with low turret bases, which I had found in a pawnshop here in Montana. A few months later, a friend was visiting and I handed him an original K98k sniper rifle to look at. He said, “Oh, this must be the one you wrote up that you got in a pawn shop?” I had to say, “Nope, this is another one. That one had turret mounts and a Zeiss scope. This one has the short side rail mount with a Kahles scope.” My friend looked dumbfounded and said almost in awe, “You got another original German WWII sniper rifle! How did you manage that?” “Luck, just plain luck,” was my Duke thought his money was wasted when this Japanese Type 38 rifle proved to have dangerously excessive headspace. His “luck” saved him. Duke had coveted this German K98k sniper rifle with Kahles scope in short side rail mounts for a decade. Luck finally brought it to him. Duke tried to win an auction for a rare Japanese Type 97 sniper rifle but lost. The very next day he was able to buy this one for $600 less than he had bid for the other one. What Duke had actually purchased wasn’t an Italian Model 1891 but a much rarer Model 1941. Luck again! truthful answer. I had known about this rifle for over a decade but the owner wouldn’t consider selling it. Then he had a stroke of bad luck and needed to raise cash. Not gleeful about someone’s bad luck, still I did have the cash to help him out so it was good luck for me. When it comes to games of chance, I am famous among my friends for my bad luck. Once in Las Vegas, I decided I’d set aside $50 to use in slot machines. Not once, never, was I a single cent ahead. My 50 bucks slid into a variety of slot machines spitting nary a coin back at me. A friend with me put a few dimes into a slot machine and hit a $100 jackpot. Conversely, I’m also known among my friends for my good luck when it comes to finding good guns and accessories. Actually, I’ve even had good luck in getting rid of guns which foolishly I had bought. An example was my first Japanese Type 38 6.5mm rifle. Not careful when I spied it at a gun show, upon firing it I discovered that headspace was so excessive it was dangerous to shoot. With the first shot, smoke actually came out around the bolt. The reason was the cartridge’s primer had fallen out. Now that’s excessive headspace! I figured I was out the rifle’s price. Not so. Luck brought me a fellow who wanted everything off of a Japanese Type 38 except its action. I stripped it down for him, got a few bucks more than I paid for it, and then tossed the useless action into the corner where it still resides. Gun luck can sometimes be involved with timing rather than finding. A few years back, I was hot for a Japanese Type 97 6.5mm sniper rifle for my growing WWII collection. I found one on a firearms auction website. Type 97s are rare and expensive so in my mind I set a price above which I would not bid. Then as the auction’s time was ending bidding got fast and furious. I bid $500 more than my preset limit and I still didn’t get the Type 97. That was good luck because the very next morning a friend called and said, “I found you a Type 97.” Its 16 W W W. G U N S M A G A Z I N E . C O M • S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 2

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