Arisaka Type 44 Cavalry Rifle Carbine Service Weapon
The Arisaka Type 44 Cavalry Rifle was based on the Type 38 carbine, itself based on the Type 38 infantry rifle.
Authored By JR Potts, AUS 173d AB and Dan Alex; Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com
The Type 44 Carbine (also known as the Type 44 "Cavalry Rifle") was a standardized Japanese Army bolt-action carbine weapon designed in 1911 by famed Japanese gunsmith Baron Arisaka Nariakira and introduced into Imperial Japanese Army (IJA) service in 1912. The type led a long and storied career within the ranks of the IJA and saw production span into 1942 during World War 2. As such, the weapon was used throughout the nation's various conflicts in that span and survived in circulation long enough to see combat actions in the upcoming Korean and Chinese Civil Wars. The "carbine" - or "cavalry rifle" - classification described the weapon as a shortened form of an existing "long rifle" design - namely the bolt-action Type 38 service rifle which, itself, was developed into the Type 38 Cavalry Rifle. The Type 44 was, therefore, based on the Type 38 Cavalry Rifle. Carbine weapons
were developed to provide the firepower of a traditional long rifle within a more compact body suitable for use by mounted infantry (cavalry) and this usually involving the shortening of the barrel assembly while keeping the rest of the design intact - in essence making for a more logistically friendly end-product.
While its lineage was based on the Type 38
series, the Type 44 was distinguished by its use of a "needle-type" bayonet fitting (as opposed to a conventional blade). This installation could be folded backwards and locked in place under the forend when not in use, keeping the Type 44's compact size in check. Design of the Type 44 included a largely wooden body with an integrated ergonomic shoulder stock, ringed trigger guard and metal internal components. The components were conventionally set within the rear portion of the receiver while the wooden forend encased the barrel, allowing for minimal protrusion of the muzzle. Iron sights were fitted at the muzzle and a flip-up type installation was identified along the receiver top along the midway point.