Nambu World: Type 94 Mystery Canvas Holster



Most Type 94 holsters were made of pigskin or leather, but towards the end of the war these materials became scarce. A small number of Type 94 holsters were made of canvas. They are fairly rare nowadays. I obtained this one in 2004 through a collector of late Type 94 pistols and accessories in the US. The basic construction is quite similar to the pigskin holsters except for the material. As I researched this holster with other collectors, it became clear that there are many variations. This often leads to controversy over what is original and what is not. Although I bought it thinking it was original and paid a high price for it, I no longer believe this one is original. I have obtained opinions that it has been faked, but it is almost impossible to be 100% certain in this area. Repros abound (see the separate section on a repro). Here is what one the original seller had to say (slightly edited for continuity):

gFirst of all there are many slight variations in the thread color, canvas weave, leather type, [number of] stitches per inch, proof marks (or lack thereof), 
snap color and D-ring size and finish. The earlier (we assume) tight weave [holsters] seem to have some transitional features from the leather (cowhide 
or pigskin) holsters. Among all Type 94 holsters that I am positive are original there runs the gambit of cadmium plated, nickel plated, black painted, 
large extra & thick nickel plated and brass/copper. [Most are not proof marked]. I have only two that are proofed by Tokyo. I've never seen a 
Nagoya proofed yet, which is funny because the guns are all Nagoyas. One has an ink stamp and one is pressed into the leather; all were marked 
on the belt loop. The thread patterns are also all over the place. There are combinations like pink stitching for the flap and natural for the body 
(this is the most common that I've seen), all natural (this seems to be the second most common one) and all pink (this seems to be the rarer one). 
I also have one that has a pink [stitched] flap a pink [stitched] mag pouch and the rest is natural. The snaps come in all kinds of colors and 
materials. There are several shades of brown and green for canvas. I also have one LW and TW canvas holster with a nickel snap. Some of 
the snaps are marked [inside] with the English WDOG TMCo., but I've also heard of others. My marked ones are nickel plated and cadmium 
plated. Stitching can be from 4.5 to 7 threads per inch. And lastly, the canvas itself can be several different shades from OD green to a very 
light almost natural color.h


Anyway, enough talk, letfs look at some photos. Here is a shot of the back.


This shot shows it open.


    Here is the Tokyo inspection mark. It is the character To from Tokyo and is on the belt loop. Apart from the fact the holsters were not made by Tokyo Arsenal, I always thought this character looked a bit odd, i.e not quite the same font as the other Tokyo Arsenal marks I have seen.


This is the inside of the snap. I was surprised at first that it had English writing inside. It turned out to be the trademark (KANE-M) of a Japanese snap manufacturer, Morito & Co., that was established in 1908, so I could not conclude that it was of post-war manufacture on the basis of these markings alone. I do not know when the company started using them. I note, however, that none of my other Type 94 holsters have writing inside the snaps.



Here is my Type 94, spare mag and cleaning rod in the holster.


With the gun and accessories inside the holster looks properly gfilled outh.




Last updated: August 8, 2009. All contents are copyright Teri unless otherwise specified and may not be used elsewhere in any form without prior permission.

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