Arisaka Type 38 Bolt-Action Infantry Service Rifle
The Type 38 became the standard infantry rifle of the Imperial Army.
Authored By JR Potts, AUS 173d AB and Dan Alex; Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com
The Arisaka Type 38 (Rifle, Meiji 38th Year) was the standard rifle issued to the Imperial Japanese infantry. The weapon had a high accuracy rate and proved very reliable in the adverse conditions found on the then-modern battlefield. War-time records indicate that some 3,400,000 were ultimately produced and the rifle saw active service with the United Kingdom, Thailand, Russia and China. The Type 38 was inducted into Imperial Japanese Service in 1905.
The Type 38 rifle was a long implement and optimized to use the Type 30 bayonet. The rifle was 4 feet, 2 inches in length and became the longest service rifle in service during World War 2. The additional 20-inch long bayonet gave the Japanese soldier an advantage when bayonet fighting was required in close-quarters. However, the average Japanese infantryman stood at about 5 feet, 3 inches and thusly had difficulty handling such a long weapon. The inherently small stature of the Japanese soldier also required a smaller caliber round and less of a powder charge to contain recoil when the weapon was fired from the shoulder.