Date of manufacture

Discussion in 'Browning Hi Power Handgun' started by Smokenguns, Jul 10, 2018.

  1. Smokenguns

    Smokenguns .22LR

    I have a hi power serial number 5534. It is a F.N., fixed sight and in at least 90 % condition. having a hard time dating it. The numbers look a bit bigger than normal on the other hi powers I have and only a 4 digit I think would perhaps be a very early one. I will try to get photos up soon.
  2. Rudolph31

    Rudolph31 20g

  3. Smokenguns

    Smokenguns .22LR

    Thanks Rudolph31,
    I went to those links and it seems that the controller of proofs would have been Jamarte Auguste, 1924 - 1959, The only other markings are the Nitro proof on the frame, slide and barrel with the barrel also has the ELG in an oval with the crown on top,Number 13 in the list which kind of makes no sense to me from what it says.
  4. Rudolph31

    Rudolph31 20g

    The list is confusing and incomplete. Despite what it says, I believe ELG is Epreuve de Liege (Proof of Liege), the final proof mark. Is there a date code?
  5. Smokenguns

    Smokenguns .22LR

    I cannot find any date code just the markings I have mentioned, the serial number of 5534 in block letters i/8 of an inch tall. They are a larger type set than my other one with a 6 digit number. Also, the 4 digit one has the scallop ? on the right side of the slide about 3," back of the front.let me try some photos as well.
  6. Smokenguns

    Smokenguns .22LR

    From what I can see on the NRA list, it seems to be in the very early years of production. Is that what it looks to you?
  7. sub-moa

    sub-moa .410

    A 4 digit "serial number" such as 5534 on a fixed sight FN slide legend BHP could be a serial number or a contract number and could have been produced in the late 40s through the 50's. The best way to "date" such a pistol is to find all the FN factory Part Date Codes. PDCs consist of a small stamped single digit...indicating the year (nuances in the number determine the decade), within a square or partial square...indicating the quarter of that year, that part...as a part, was inspected. The parts were then dumped into part specific "baskets" from which assemblers selected the parts to assemble the pistols. Consequently BHPs will often have more than one PDC, find the newest PDC and you find the pistol obviously could not have been assembled before that date...assuming an original pistol. PDCs can be found on the frame...usually on the side of the trigger guard root, the barrel...on the side of the bottom lug, the slide...on the firing pin tunnel and in the 40s, 50s and into the 60s many small parts often the trigger, hammer, firing pin stop, thumb safety and slide stop. A good light and a magnifying glass can be helpful in finding PDCs. Post pics of the markings and good close-ups of all the PDCs you can find and I'll respond.

    Incidentally, FN began BHP full series production in '35...following the Belgian Military Trials of '33/'34. Browning Arms Co didn't import the BHP...marked with their specified slide legend, until '54. The SN info on the NRA Museum site is taken from Browning...NOT FN the actual manufacturer, and is "problematic" in several ways. As you've noticed SG, there are also "issues" with the other site...#13 is the Belgian Crown ELG "Proof of Liège" (Epreuve du Liège) Final Proof.

    Hope that helps

    Attached Files:

    Rudolph31 likes this.
  8. Smokenguns

    Smokenguns .22LR

    Thank you for the PDC info. I will break it down and look.
    I have been obsessed with he serial number and the other markings on the gun I totally missed this on the bottom front of the grip. 2 lines, top line, LGK K, bottom line, 0661. I am so sorry I didn't see that before and mention it earlier. It may have saved a lot of time.Please let me know if that halps with anything. I will look for any PDC's I can find.
    Thank you again.
  9. sub-moa

    sub-moa .410

    LGK K stands for "Landesgendarmeriekommando Kärsten"...the Austrian Federal Gendarmerie in the province of Kärsten (Carinthia). The number 0661 is the rack number.
    Rudolph31 likes this.
  10. Smokenguns

    Smokenguns .22LR

    Thank you again Sub-moa. We know more than we did before. I am working on photos of what I think are the PDC'c just having a bit getting them to my file to send them. Do not do it a lot so still have a fit sometimes.I will overcome!
  11. sub-moa

    sub-moa .410

    YRW SG...

    YR not alone in the photo game my friend...

    It's certainly good to know it spent time in an Austrian Policeman's holster, BUT...unfortunately, that doesn't help with establishing a DOM. Austria received BHPs from several sources but mostly FN and they were taken from existing stock and new production...serial numbers and contract numbers. Sooooo, as I mentioned before, 5534 could have been manufactured from the late '40's...LGK adopted the BHP in '49, through late '50s.

    PDCs will tell us much.....
    Rudolph31 likes this.
  12. Smokenguns

    Smokenguns .22LR

    upload_2018-7-13_10-39-15.jpeg upload_2018-7-13_10-39-46.jpeg upload_2018-7-13_10-40-20.png upload_2018-7-13_16-22-46.png upload_2018-7-13_16-22-46.png [​IMG] upload_2018-7-13_11-18-39.png I upload_2018-7-13_16-15-1.jpeg IO hope these show up. The numbers and markings I could find .
    Again thanks for your help and information sub-moa.

    Attached Files:

  13. sub-moa

    sub-moa .410

    SG...wish I could be of help with posting your pics, but all I know is to use postimage.org...and wing it.

    What you have are a line of 7 postage stamp size pics, 2 of the barrel lug, 3 of the firing pin tunnel and 2 of the ??? and I've tried all I know to enlarge them to no avail. Below and after the end of your script you've got an "upload_2018-7-13_11-4-25.jpeg" which I could open and enlarge, BUT...no joy. That pic is of the firing pin tunnel and it shows a great deal of wear from use which wipes away most of the various stamps normally found there. You pistol has been shot a lot.

    Try again with postimage.org????
  14. Smokenguns

    Smokenguns .22LR

    Hope these are not too big but they should be able to be made larger. pbc24.jpg pdc 1.jpg pdc4.jpg pdc7.jpg pdc8.jpg pdc6.jpg pdc11.jpg pdc14.jpg pdc9.jpg
  15. sub-moa

    sub-moa .410

    PDCs can...and often are, difficult to make out in posted pics...even when enlarged/manipulated with a pic program they get larger but often less distinct. A trick is to blacken the area with a Magic Marker and wipe off the excess from the surface. Oftentimes the faint parts of a stamp will remain. There's no PDC on the firing pin retaining plate?

    With that said; I'll go out on a limb and say I can imagine your 5534 is likely '58. I say that for several reasons; the barrel lug PDC appears as if it might be second quarter of '57 ('47 would have had the European horizontal slash), there appears there might be an "8" PDC on the firing pin tunnel and your 5534 is VERY similar (both have the unusual '46 pattern Danish sights too) to an Austrian LGK dated to '59 with Contract Number 5702.

    Best I can do with the pics.....
  16. Smokenguns

    Smokenguns .22LR

    I am working on some better pics for you which may help. Thanks for everything so far.
  17. Smokenguns

    Smokenguns .22LR

    I think these are a bit 37282177_475839632858945_3046053933752516608_n.jpg 37209755_475839686192273_1575673640903507968_n.jpg 37296226_475839639525611_5885545942299443200_n.jpg 37340863_475839646192277_5095191201565376512_n.jpg 37364112_475839659525609_4577911731346472960_n.jpg 37408418_475839676192274_2569679461477777408_n.jpg better pics.
  18. sub-moa

    sub-moa .410

    They are better SG, I'd still lean towards '58 though :)…..

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