Third Party Press

Fake Forgotten Weapons HKs

RyanE

Baby Face
Staff member

His history leans heavily on Gibson's book which is fine I guess.

The 1936 looks reblued and the "matching" magazine is a fake.

The 1940 is a total fake and not a very good one. Fake barrel, receiver, frame, breech block, everything including the BAL2 acceptance. Complete trash.

I know Ian can't know everything, but putting these in his videos gives them a measure of legitimacy. Luger collecting is already a mess and this doesn't help. God help us if Tom at Legacy is actually writing an HK book...
 

Warrior1354

ax - hole
That's the only problem with some of these forgotten weapons videos. I understand Ian can't know everything that's almost impossible nobody can know everything. But when you have such a huge following as he does collectors think oh my goodness Ian verified these on this video. It has to be real. I'm going to bid and buy it for big money because well his word is pretty big in the collecting community. Hell how many times do we see items bring big money even though they're fake, because they come out of a certain collection? I see that all the time.
 

hale1940

Senior Member
That's the only problem with some of these forgotten weapons videos. I understand Ian can't know everything that's almost impossible nobody can know everything. But when you have such a huge following as he does collectors think oh my goodness Ian verified these on this video. It has to be real. I'm going to bid and buy it for big money because well his word is pretty big in the collecting community. Hell how many times do we see items bring big money even though they're fake, because they come out of a certain collection? I see that all the time.

I think part of the problem for Ian is that he has good relations with various major auction houses, and relies heavily on them for content. This has always been the case for him. What I suspect this means though is that he is not in a place to start making authenticity claims on guns provided to him. If the 'experts' at the auction house say its good, then its good. And really, outside of French guns and weird Chinese mystery pistols, he's not knowledgable enough to spot all but the most obvious of issues.
 

Slash

Gray Ghost Moderator
Staff member
It's YouTube. Any idiot can post anything they want to. Yeah, there is some decent content but the majority of it is just social media. Tom writing an HK reference is terrifying however ....
 

Guillaume d'Orange

Senior Member
Overall, I like what Ian does : offering knowledge to the layman.
Anybody who is a bit smart won’t take what he says at face value and will do some research.
As hale said, loads of his videos are sponsored by auction houses or by collectors lending their guns to him, obviously if he had doubts about the authenticity of a gun, he could not trash it in public : that’s the limit of what he does.

But hey, anybody in to create a new YouTube channel ? The name will be Turd busters 😄
 
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Wolfsburg

Senior Member
I like Ian and his videos but like anyone, he isn't infallible. As with anything, a critical mind and common sense should always be at the forefront.
 

BishopofBling

Senior Member
This isn't the first time this has happened, he doesn't come off as a bad guy because if he has incorrect info he'll correct it but, he of the plethora of guns he covers and how frequently he posts videos he's bound to make mistakes. I view his channel like the History Channel, its alright for the average Joe but as Guillaume d'Orange said, you're best bet is to just read books on the topic. Ian certainly is capable of good research he's just pumping out too many videos and the quality of info suffers. That being said, I don't think I've sat down for a Forgotten Weapons video in a while.
 

Absolut

Senior Member
I can only weight in for Ian. He is trying to do the best. He had sent me pictures in advance of items coming up on the major auction companies and asked me if original or not, and when I told him not original he sometimes due to the rarity nevertheless did the video but did call it not original in the video. Hence if he shows a turd as an original he either got fooled himself, or someone else who he had asked for help didn't know himself or on purpose told him it is correct though he should know better.

These videos are helpful for seeing items diassembled you usually don't see taken apart, or auction companies being too lazy to do that for you. This allows better assessment of items of possible interest. But he is not there to tell you what you should go for and what not, this also not being the purpose of his videos. This is your personal task and not his.
 

ltong29

Senior Member
I feel like Ian walks a very fine line. I believe the content he creates is intended to be factual. However, as stated earlier, he cannot be the expert of everything. However, I do believe some of these videos are sponsored, and should be taken with a grain of salt. The best way to burn a bridge would be for him to call out the piece as a fake in the video. However, I felt the video of him bidding on lots using Rock Island's money to be in pretty bad taste.

Interestingly, the video has been unlisted, so that's kinda telling IMO. It really reeks of shill bidding as the auction house is using their own money to drive bidding.

In my opinion, he also lost points for the HMG and RTI videos. I don't know how involved FW was with HMG Gunworks guys, but the RTI videos were all bad. I had indirect experience with InterOrdinance/RTI from their AK business, so I wasn't surprised to see that their Ethiopian imports were a steaming pile of garbage. However, the rifle Ian presents in the videos seems to be significantly better than what people got, which were mostly beat to shit rifles. They're by no means pristine, but the horror stories I've seen also caused RTI to change their return policy and no longer guarantee barrels.
 

Absolut

Senior Member
We have to separate into two different aspects: I think his personal main goal and also most of the persons actually watching his videos are there to just see a specific gun and item in moving pictures plus to hear a few words on it. These persons might be in another country plus most do not have the money for these rare items anyway. While some auction companies do seem to see him as a potential value riser, honestly spoken: the rare items he shows in his videos, most of those who actually can afford them are educated enough to make an assessment themselves on these items and do not buy it because "there is a forgotten weapons video on it". If someone really is that stupid to buy it just because it is featured in a youtube video and held a few minutes in the hands of Ian .. well, then that particular person indeed deserves to burn his money.

Has anyone so far seen any item being offered again and appraised as "this was the weapon that was featured in a video of forgotten weapons"? I didn't. But what is good in my opinion, it creates interest in collectible items and therefore raises the value of our personal collections, as well as it brings future youtube generations to collect guns.

Ian btw is always open to critizism and trying to do better. So if you find a mistake, let him know and though he might not respond, be sure he reads it and try the next time to not make the same mistake again.
 

Cyrano4747

Well-known member
Something to keep in mind is that this also holds true for other “authoritative” sources. Once you start really digging on a specific subject and becoming somewhat knowledgeable you’ll start finding errors in books written by respected experts. Sometimes it’s small stuff, sometimes it’s big stuff. Sometimes you’ll find something that gets confidently trotted out as a firm fact in message boards citing that book that you know is wrong.

This is exacerbated by the fact that proper citation is rare in firearms literature, even well written and well researched books. Plenty will have a bibliography but the whole academic apparatus of footnotes etc? Uncommon and more likely than not found with authors who have an academic background. Storz comes to mind as someone who is a very good example of doing it right. Götz meanwhile can be maddening in his lack of citation.

And this becomes a problem when those books get cited confidently by people writing on other subjects. More than once I’ve found an interesting mention in a book, cheered that it has a citation, and then run into the brick wall of Götz. The odd or controversial tidbit becomes “fact” because someone considered authoritative published it in the 80s or 90s and is confidently cited by someone else who in turn is cited etc.

And sometimes there’s a bit of nuance, where when you really start digging back in period and primary sources there is a kernal of truth that got exaggerated or a simple misunderstanding etc. You’re ready to pillory someone because of something they wrote in Waffen Revue in the 70s and then you track down something from the 40s that points to something from the 1880s and you can see where things got muddled.

Now factor in language barriers. If you don’t have the ability to dig back to those primary or period sources you’re dependent on the flawed secondary literature.

Circling back to YouTube, this is a big part of why I have sympathy for people like Ian and Othias. Not only are they casting a very wide net and not only are they making a lot of videos on diverse subjects, but they’re limited in how far back they can dig. No one is going to have the linguistic chops to do quality research in French, German, Russian, Japanese, Chinese, Spanish, etc history. And the rare people who might (I do know a guy who is research competent in six non-English languages) are almost certainly too busy with careers that leverage that linguistic talent to make hundreds of YouTube videos.

So the people making them are left with the books which, as I said and I’m sure we’re all aware, can have problems.

After all, Backbone of the Wehrmacht was considered a go-to book at one point, and look at the esteem that it’s held in now.
 

Warrior1354

ax - hole
Well I hate to break it to you. But you would be shocked to know how many people would buy a certain item. Because a certain person looked at it, or it was on TV. I remember visiting the Pawn Stars shop in Las Vegas one year. They had specific items on display for sale with a certificate of authenticity, saying this was displayed on this episode on this season. And people were buying it, because to them it was something special. You still have to think Ian is basically a YouTube celebrity now with well over 2 million subscribers. That's a very large following. And like I have stated I have nothing against him. I think he does really good work, but I do find some of his fan base a little bit annoying. The whole gun Jesus has spoken and his word is law yeah that gets annoying lol. I'm just trying to have a good discussion about this but what I have seen over the years. Items have been sold because a certain special person verified it was real even though it was clearly a fake.
 

Cyrano4747

Well-known member
Oh I have no doubt that people lean on his videos unwisely and get fleeced as a result. I’m not arguing against that at all. I’m just saying I have sympathy for what he’s trying to do and the limits he’s working with.

People will always defer to authority unwisely and get screwed. Once upon a time the stereotype of the beginner collector who was going to get hosed was the guy carrying a copy of BBotW around the gun show.
 

Warrior1354

ax - hole
Yeah those were the early days but it was the best book we had at the time to go by. We are so grateful that we have the best series of books on the k98k rifles today. I'm hoping I can be equally successful with my own Book Project one day but finding the information is the hardest part.
 

BishopofBling

Senior Member
Something to keep in mind is that this also holds true for other “authoritative” sources. Once you start really digging on a specific subject and becoming somewhat knowledgeable you’ll start finding errors in books written by respected experts. Sometimes it’s small stuff, sometimes it’s big stuff. Sometimes you’ll find something that gets confidently trotted out as a firm fact in message boards citing that book that you know is wrong.

This is exacerbated by the fact that proper citation is rare in firearms literature, even well written and well researched books. Plenty will have a bibliography but the whole academic apparatus of footnotes etc? Uncommon and more likely than not found with authors who have an academic background. Storz comes to mind as someone who is a very good example of doing it right. Götz meanwhile can be maddening in his lack of citation.

And this becomes a problem when those books get cited confidently by people writing on other subjects. More than once I’ve found an interesting mention in a book, cheered that it has a citation, and then run into the brick wall of Götz. The odd or controversial tidbit becomes “fact” because someone considered authoritative published it in the 80s or 90s and is confidently cited by someone else who in turn is cited etc.

And sometimes there’s a bit of nuance, where when you really start digging back in period and primary sources there is a kernal of truth that got exaggerated or a simple misunderstanding etc. You’re ready to pillory someone because of something they wrote in Waffen Revue in the 70s and then you track down something from the 40s that points to something from the 1880s and you can see where things got muddled.

Now factor in language barriers. If you don’t have the ability to dig back to those primary or period sources you’re dependent on the flawed secondary literature.

Circling back to YouTube, this is a big part of why I have sympathy for people like Ian and Othias. Not only are they casting a very wide net and not only are they making a lot of videos on diverse subjects, but they’re limited in how far back they can dig. No one is going to have the linguistic chops to do quality research in French, German, Russian, Japanese, Chinese, Spanish, etc history. And the rare people who might (I do know a guy who is research competent in six non-English languages) are almost certainly too busy with careers that leverage that linguistic talent to make hundreds of YouTube videos.

So the people making them are left with the books which, as I said and I’m sure we’re all aware, can have problems.

After all, Backbone of the Wehrmacht was considered a go-to book at one point, and look at the esteem that it’s held in now.
It's weird that they don't do proper footnotes and honestly it pisses me off. Anyone getting a BA in History will know that any fact you draw from a source needs a citation and the best sources are primary sources. You can use secondary sources after proper vetting but primary is usually best. I think that's why you are seeing people regurgitate incorrect info. I've found a lot of collectors books for guns to be on the casual side, I'm curious if this is similar in other hobbies. There are obviously exceptions and there have been some well written and researched books such as the K98k series and I find anything written by Bruce Canfield to be excellent.
 

ugafx4

I buy capture paper guns
Staff member
I think a bigger issue with a lot of the weapons books I read is that they do cite the sources, but the sources are earlier weapons books that were shoddily researched. Its interesting following the research trail from book to book to see where it goes. A lot of times I can't locate the original source documents used.
 

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