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# 5372 - M1911A1 Ithaca
2/25/03
William Maryville TN

Ithaca - M1911a1 - 45 - Blue - 1208675 -

U.S.43 on side with serial number Ithaca Arms Company Ithaca N. Y. on opposite side A friend recently purchased a M1911a1 that appears to be the second weapon made in Ithacas second run in 1943. We have searched and it appears to definitely look correct for Ithaca. The problem is there are no other markings such as ''Property U.S. Government'' or ''Model 1911a1''. There are also no arsenal markings. Please help us figure this out. Again everything looks correct except for the markings. Thanks for any help.

Answer:
William- Being the second number in a serial number block is sort of neat, and if in the first block of numbers that might add to the value. Ithaca's production of M1911A1 pistols was a slow starting lackluster effort and the early guns included many salvaged or unfinished parts from WW1 era production, and also numerous parts purchased from Colt and marked by Ithaca. By late 1943 when the second number block was being produced, they were much more organized and productive, and there should have been no oddball variations in markings or finish. Standard finish then would have been gray parkerize, so at a minimum you pistol has been refinished. "US 43" is highly unlikely to have been an official marking, which leads me to believe that other marking oddities are also suspect. I cannot explain what it is, but I am pretty sure that it is not correct or as it left the factory. However, I would defer to dissenting opinions from recognized M1911 experts such as Charles Clawson, if they opined differently. John Spangler


# 5342 - Lugers 1900 U.S. Test
2/25/03
Richard: Lake Oswego, OR

DWM - 1900 Parabellum (Luger) - 7.65mm (.30 Luger - 4.75 Inches - Blue - 757X -

American Eagle over chamber. Read recently that the ''accepted'' range of serials of 6100 to 7100 for US test Lugers may be too narrow. The gun I have has no ''Germany'' mark, no proof marks, and no ''safe'' or ''geseichert'' mark. The partial serial number on the takedown lever is stamped on its face, rather than its bottom. Recently Kenyon wrote that this was done only on the US test guns. Any comments on whether this could be a test pistol?

Answer:
Richard- You already have the opinion of one of the most respected Luger experts, so my opinion is worth about as much as asking "Bubba" if Richard Petty's mechanics put the right parts in his NASCAR vehicles. The only information I have that is in the same league as Kenyon's advice is that of Scott Meadows in his U.S. Military Automatic Pistols book. On pages 264-274 he thoroughly documents the background, purchase and trials of the 1,000 model 1900 Lugers, and describes them before moving on to further trials of the Model 1902 model. Meadows notes that some may fall outside the ends f the 6100-7100 serial number range. However, I suspect that yours in the 7500 range is a bit more into the wishful thinking realm. Also, I note that you use the paranoid "X" in your serial number. If I had picked that up before starting, I would have just deleted your question as kookiness. Sorry, just one of my pet peeves. John Spangler


# 5341 - Winchester Centennial Model Value
2/25/03
Kevin

Winchester - 1876 - 40-60 - 26 - Other - 93505 -

Winchesters Repeating Arms New Haven CT. It has Kings Improvement Patent March 29th 1866 Oct 26th 1850 I would like to know about the value of this rifle. It has a 26'' octagon Barrel and the stock is made of walnut with some metal around the end.

Answer:
Kevin, you have a Winchester Model 1876, often referred to as the Centennial model because it was introduced during the Centennial of the United States. There is a steady demand from Winchester collectors for this model. The condition of the wood and metal are the final determinants of price, but I've not seen them priced below $1500 in several years and prices have gone over $3000 for those in excellent condition. Marc


# 5309 - Marlin XXX Revolver
2/25/03
Curtis, Canada

Marlin - XXX Standard 1872 - 30 RF - 3.125 - Nickel -

I'm just looking for information on this model. There doesn't seem to be allot of information regarding these fine little pistols.

Answer:
Curtis, Marlin manufactured the XXX Standard 1872 Pocket Revolver from 1872 to 1887, total production is estimated to be about 26,000. XXX designated that the revolver was chambered in 30 caliber, there was a companion model known as the XX Standard chambered in 22 caliber. There were two basic types of XXX tip-up barrels, the first was a 3 & 1/8 inch octagonal ribbed, the second (later) type was a 3 inch round ribbed. Shorter barrel lengths could be special ordered and are worth a premium if original. Barrels are marked on top "XXX STANDARD 1872". All 1872 revolvers had a brass frame with spur trigger and bird's head butt. Standard finish was nickel plating, but a silver plated frame and blued barrel could be special ordered, revolvers finished with silver plating are scarce. Flaydermans value for XXX revolvers in excellent condition is about $200. Marc


# 5305 - byf Luger
2/22/03
Kevork, Northridge, CA,USA

Byf Luger - P08 - 9 Mm Parabellum - 4 Inches - Blue - 7640 K -

nazi proofmarks, chamber is marked 42 year of manufacture? how many were made? current value?

Answer:
Kevork, you have what collectors call a byf Luger, byf is the WWII German ordnance code assigned to Mauser-Werke, Oberndorf am Neckar, Germany in February of 1941. Receivers of byf Lugers are marked above chamber with the two digit year of manufacture, 41 or 42. The 42 marking on your Luger signifies that it was manufactured in 1942. Mauser manufactured many thousands of byf Lugers during WWII, it is one of the most frequently encountered of WWII military Luger variations. Values for byf Lugers range from $400 to over $1200 depending on condition. Marc


# 5296 - Mod 94 With Short Magazine Tube
2/22/03
Michelle, Oakridge, OR

Winchester - 1894 - -30 Wcf (30-30) - 23 1/2'' - Nickel - 503891 -

two stamps with a circle and a W over a P in the middle and another circle with just a P inside. It also has open sights (dove tails I think, with a 2nd flip up tail sight) This gun is a gift and I am looking for the history of it. Every picture that I have seen of this gun has two barrels one on top of the other and my rifle has only a single barrel with a 2'' barrel underneath coming out of the wood stock. I am uneducated about firearms, this was a gift passed on to me for deer hunting. The rifle is in excellent shape and has not been altered. I am hoping that you can give me the correct names or ID cues so I can further my research the correct way. Thank You

Answer:

Michelle, your description of the rifle tells me you have a Winchester Model 1894 rifle made in 1908 that has the short magazine tube. The bottom of the "double barrel" you refer to is the magazine tube. All Model 1894's came from the factory with a full length magazine tube, unless otherwise specified. The short tube had to be special ordered from the factory. You might want to check for other special order features on the rifle including the following:

  • Half round/half octagon barrel, shotgun type butt (not as rounded)
  • Hard rubber buttplate instead of a metal buttplate,
  • Pistol grip stock instead of a straight grip stock,
  • Take down lever (a small handle on top of the magazine tube than was raised, and permitted the magazine tube to be unscrewed-the barrel could then be removed from the receiver).

The addition of any of these features adds considerably to the value of the rifle. Marc


# 5275 - Remington Copies With Brass Frame
2/22/03
JD, Dallas, Texas

Remington - 1858 - .44 - 7-8 - Other - N/A -

brass frame Sirs: Was there ever such a gun as an 1858 Remington New Army with a brass frame (allegedly used by the confederate troops cuz they were wanted to save their steel for artillery guns)-or is this just a cheaper ''wishful recreation'' by modern companies (i.e. Uberti, Pietta etc.) I would very much appreciate an expert opinion on this since I am getting contradictory statements in re this from so-called civil war historians-and they both can't be right.

Answer:
JD - Dueling experts flinging digits and ink at one another from miles away! It is indeed an honor for us to referee this dispute and stamp out ignorance wherever we find it. Our answer (with our usual full money back guarantee) is that there were NO Confederate made copies of the Remington made with brass frames during the Civil War. The use of brass instead of iron or steel is probably mainly because brass is a lot easier to work with than iron or steel. Most of the gun making in the south was done with very little in the way of machinery, unlike the northern makers who were well supplied with water powered machinery (lathes shapers, milling machines, drill presses) and jigs and fixtures for mass production. Bubba done pretty good with what he had available to work with. There were a number (about 1,500 or so) of copies of the Whitney Navy revolver made by Spiller & Burr in Atlanta and later at the Macon, Georgia, Armory. These are somewhat similar to the Remingtons, in that they have a topstrap and the barrel is threaded into the front of the frame instead of being attached by the wedge through the cylinder arbor (pin) as on the Colt. People sometimes mistake the Whitneys for Remingtons, so some of your experts may try that escape hatch. The modern "brass frame Remington" reproductions are probably a result of marketing and economics. Colts and Remingtons were the two most widely used revolvers of the Civil War, and thus the logical choices to copy when the replica craze started about 1960. Hoping that eager buyers would want arms representative of both the Yankees and Confederates, it was decided early on that brass framed copies of the Colt Navy would be marketed as "The Reb". As blackpowder shooting gained popularity, it was obvious to most shooters that the Remington design was a good deal stronger and better than the Colt design. At some point the makers and marketers must have decided that since brass frame copies of Colts were selling well as "Confederate" type guns, why not make brass frame Remingtons too? They already had the machinery set up to make them in steel, so it was no big deal to use brass instead. The loose similarity to the Spiller and Burr copy of the Whitney may or may not have been a factor in the decision. In my opinion, replica black powder revolvers is an excellent collecting specialty, and we have a link on our links page (either here or at our other site http://ArmsCollectors.com ) to a group already collecting these. I bet that back in the 1850s nobody was collecting Colt revolvers, they were just shooting guns, and the collectors were all looking for flintlocks or wheelocks, not the Patersons and Walkers. John Spangler


# 5269 - Springfield Trapdoor Cadet? Rifle
2/22/03
Mike, Wadsworth, OH

Springfield - 1884 - ? - Blue - 536523 -

31 / 34 on the stock and an insignia SMP 1892 I was given the riffle from the estate of my uncle. It is missing the sight at the end of the barrel, has a crack in the stock, some rust, and replacement screws that are not original. Can this gun be restored or is it to far gone for any hope of refurbishing. Can it ever be fired again? What can you tell me about the guns history? Thanks, Mike

Answer:
Mike- First, there is no documented history on your rifle, but the serial number is very close to a long series of "cadet rifles" made for issue to the Military Academy and what we would now call ROTC units at various Land Grant Colleges and Universities. These were slightly shorter and lighter than the standard infantry rifles, and the barrel length (measured from the face of the closed breech block to the muzzle) was 29 1/2" for the cadets, and 32 5/8" for the standard rifles. Trapdoor parts are very easy to find, and there are a number of good gun shows in Ohio, so you should be able to get whatever you need. People with the parts can probably tell you if it is worth the effort to restore, or just use it as is for a wall hanger. Anyone interested in trapdoors should check out the superb site by our good friend Al Frasca www.TrapdoorCollector.com This has great info on every model of trapdoor made, plus a great cross reference index for his two books and the Trapdoor newsletter so you can find the answer to all those trapdoor questions. Al Frasca is THE absolute authority on trapdoors, and he is very helpful answering questions on the forum on his site, assisted by a number of other nice guys who also know a great deal. Check out the excellent photos too. John Spangler


# 5625 - Antique 16 Gauge Contraption
2/20/03
Trey, Red River Parish

I am the librarian in Red River Parish Louisiana.... from time to time I come across unusual items that I cant identify.... the following is one of them. I don't at present have a photograph, so you must make do with my description. This device is made of cast iron it is approximately 18" in length with a box formed at one end that is about 4" square. The box has a half inch thick oak board covering it and the entire piece sits on a wood board. Fashioned on the end of the box is a cylinder which holds a 16 gauge shotgun shell which is hinged and can be lifted up and back into place. It is made of molded brass open on both ends for insertion of shell and firing of contents. The box on the end holds the firing mechanism which consists of 1) a pull lever which operates the firing pin and 2) electrodes which can be hooked to a battery and fire it electronically. The piece looks to me to be WWI vintage, but could be a little older or newer. The only thing written on the piece is BINGO 16 and PITTSBURGH PA. This is molded lettering in the cast iron. Do you have any idea of what this might be. One fellow said it could be a booby trap simulator or the like. Any help you could offer would be greatly appreciated.

Answer:
Trey- Thanks for contacting Antique and Collectable Firearms and Militaria Headquarters. I am not familiar with this item, but will make a guess anyway. Since it is marked "Bingo 16" and takes a 16 GA shell, I would think it was made in roughly its present configuration, and is not some home brew contraption, although the wood board is probably a local addition. That sort of name sounds to me to be circa 1890-1920. I suspect it was intended for use as a "trap" or "set" gun. These are generally illegal now (to protect the rights of criminals who might get hurt breaking into someone's house). The basic concept goes back at least 200 years where a gun would be set up to prevent poaching or burglary. The gun would either be anchored pointed in a set direction, or on a swivel type mount where someone tripping a wire would cause it to turn in their direction. Tripping a wire would cause the gun to fire. Blanks could be used for scare value, or regular cartridges for more permanent results. It is possible that this sort of gun could have been set out in a field or game trail or animal burrow, and fired remotely or by trip wire to get rid of pests, or harvest game. It would be good to check the length of the barrel. It must be at least 18" measured from the face of the breech (where the firing pin hits) to the muzzle end of the barrel. Otherwise the BATF folks consider it a sawed off shotgun, and illegal to own. Hope this helps. John Spangler


# 5291 - Wards Western Field Values
2/18/03
Don Dick Hedgesville, WV

Wards - Western Field - .22 - 22'' - Blue - N.O.47A -

Wards Western Field N.O.47A 22 S-L-LR PAT.PEND. Please tell me about it. Is it rare? Is it worth anything? It shoots great!

Answer:
Don, the Wards Western Field Model 47A was manufactured by Mossberg, it was their model 45A. The Mossberg 45A was only manufactured in 1937 and 1938, and came in both target and sporting configurations. The target model had a 24 inch heavy target barrel and hooded front sight. The sporting model had a lighter sporting barrel, and receiver aperture sight. There is no collectors interest in Wards Western Field firearms. This model may be rare because it was only manufactured for a short time, but value is still in the $75.00 or less range. Marc


# 5282 - Remington 540 XR
2/18/03
Mark, Princeton, W.VA.-U.S.

Remington - 540 XR - .22 Long Rifle - 26.0000 inches - Blue - A1014922 -

Sir, I would like any Info. on this gun you can give me. Also, the gun has been glass bedded from front of receiver to end of forearm, it has only one sling swivel stud in the forearm, none in the butt stock. Were these done at Remington or was it done after it left. Thank you for your time. Mark

Answer:
Mark, the Model 540XR was designed for three-position shooting and was intended to be a moderately priced smallbore target rifle for intermediate and junior shooters. It had a specially designed forend that extended down to the underside of the trigger guard, facilitating finger-tip or finger-back support in the standing position. The 540XR receiver was derived from Remington's Model 580 series of rifles which all had six rear locking lugs. The rifle also had an adjustable trigger, a four-way adjustable buttplate; and a one-piece, heavy (walnut-finished) hardwood stock with thumb cuts. The heavy target barrel was twenty-six inches in length, and the rifle weighed eight pounds, eight ounces with sights. The 540XR came stock with no sights but for a small premium it could be ordered with a Redfield No. 63 front sight and a Redfield No. 75 micrometer rear sight. My references do not indicate that the rifle was glass bedded at the factory or that it came with sling swivels. My guess is that the bedding and swivel were added after the rifle left the factory. Marc


# 5268 - Manhattan Revolver- cased accessories
2/18/03
Stuart, FL

Manhattan Fire ArmsCo - Navy - .36 - 6.25'' - Blue - 2834X -

Several quick questions. First, what was usually included with this model as a cased set when new (flask, mould, jag, caps, tool) not all these or anything missing? Second are there any reproduction tools, flasks, etc. available? I have heard that Colt parts are somewhat interchangeable. I am referring to the tools and accessories noted above. And finally, what size nipple do these revolvers have?

Answer:
Stuart- Manhattans are well made pistols, very similar to the Colt percussion models of the Civil War era, and I suspect that the casings were very similar, and would have the same accessories. There is a book by Wallace Nutter, "Manhattan Firearms" that probably would be a great help, but it is out of print and expensive. The good news is that flasks were generally supplied by flask makers, not the arms maker, so here are probably more flasks than guns. As for nipple size, that information may be buried in the back of the Dixie Gun Works catalog where they have all sorts of neat facts and figures, most of which are pretty accurate, although often lacking added info uncovered in recent years. (The info section looks pretty much like it did when I first got Dixie catalogs in the 1960s.) John Spangler


# 5266 - British Bulldog Revolver
2/18/03
Allen, Atascadero, CA

Belgian - British Bulldog - .44 - 3'' - Blue - none -

Backstrap is name engraved. Jeweler says it's machine engraved, but can't tell how old it is. When (how long ago) did machine engraving begin to be used on firearms?

Answer:
Allen- I really do not know when they started using "machine" engraving but we need to clarify what that term means. Really good engravers are true artists in metal working and can cut precise letters or designs freehand, much like an artist with a brush or pencil. For centuries they did not have any other options, so all engraving, including presentation inscriptions were done freehand. At some point folks figured out that a pantograph type rig could be used to copy letters or designs from a master pattern on to an object nearby. These are similar to lettering sets used by draftsmen (LeRoy is the brand I am familiar with) and rigs for people doing house signs with routers, etc. These can produce very nice results and the size of the letters can be adjusted by controlling the settings on the various arms and levers. Initially the pantographs probably just allowed scratching on the surface with a sharp cutter, much like the traditional chisel used for hand work. At some point, they rigged rotary power to the part marking the object, much as the router in the example given earlier. These will leave a much different pattern in the markings than a mere scraper or a chisel pushed by hand or tapped with a hammer. Now, just about every small town has a place that does bowling trophies, etc who can turn out this type of "engraving" in brass, plastic or whatever. My rough guess is that pantograph work probably began sometime after 1900, and the rotary powered versions probably became common after about 1950. I am not sure how much a presentation name on a British Bulldog would enhance its interest or value, but probably not a great deal. But, Custer was supposed to have had some British Bulldogs, so perhaps some industrious faker has been busy. John Spangler


# 5584 - Antique Arms Fraud Charges
2/15/03



Answer:
(Press release from the FBI site )
Immediate Release January 23, 2003 , Philadelphia, PA
SALE OF COLLECTIBLE FIREARMS AND CONSPIRACY TO COMMIT



United States Attorney Patrick L. Meehan today announced the filing of a one count indictment charging two experts and consultants, engaged in the valuation, appraisal, acquisition, and sale of collectible firearms, with one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, in violation of Title 18 U.S.C.  371.

The indictment charges that Richard Ellis and Michael Zomber engaged in a scheme to enrich themselves by defrauding a Bucks County collector of historical antique firearms manufactured by the Samuel Colt's Patent Arms Company's Manufacturing ("Colt").

The indictment charges that: Ellis was a firearms expert and consultant engaged through his business, Investment Securities Exchange, Inc. located in Moline, Illinois, in the valuation, appraisal, acquisition, and sale of collectible firearms, specializing in historical Colt firearms. It is further alleged that Zomber was a firearms expert and consultant, engaged through his business, Michael Zomber Company located in Culver City, California, in the purchase and resale of fine antique guns, swords, and armor.

The indictment alleges that the defendants were involved in a scheme between March, 1997 and April, 1999 to induce the Bucks County collector to purchase antique Colt firearms at inflated prices by means of false and fraudulent pretenses, representations, and promises. It is specifically alleged by the grand jury that the defendants created and then submitted to the collector fictitious letters to enhance the value of the antique Colt firearms and to induce the collector to purchase the firearms. The charges arise from the acquisition by the collector of four antique historical firearms purchased at prices totaling $3,225,000.

The firearms included:
1. The Colt Walker revolver serial number 1009 (the Walker 1009) and the Colt Walker revolver serial number 1010 (the Walker 1010), manufactured by Celt and presented by Samuel Colt in 1847 to Captain Samuel H. Walker of the Texas Rangers;
2. The Colt Union & Liberty revolver serial number 151718/E (the Union & Liberty), an Army model 1860 firearm manufactured by Colt in 1864.
3. The Colt 1862 Police serial number 3922OI/E (the Colt Police), a revolver manufactured by Colt in 1864.

If convicted, the defendants face the following maximum sentences: 5 years imprisonment, a $250,000 fine, and restitution. The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.


# 5265 - Robin Hood Revolver
2/15/03
Dick, Reynoldsburg, Ohio

Unknown - Robin Hood - Unknown - Derringer - Don't Know - FEB 22, 1875 -

This is a 7 shot revolving barrel Who is the manufacturer? What city would this derringer have been made in? What is the caliber?

Answer:
Dick- Freeman W. Hood registered two patents for some revolver features in 1875, and it is believed that his guns were made under license and subcontract at Whitney Armory. He was an opportunist, and patented a key feature that had been in use just to give trouble to his competitors. He also was financially involved in several other makers of suicide specials. The Robin Hood guns were made in several models, and generally are low quality (to be charitable, some would say they were outright junk). One common and interesting feature is the appearance of five grooves visible at the muzzle, but not extending down the barrel, basically fake rifling!. The Robin Hood was made in .22 caliber with smooth seven shot cylinder and as the Robin Hood No 1 with fluted cylinder, but both in .22 rimfire (blackpowder only) with 2 7/16" barrel. Another variation was made with markings "Robin Hood No. 1 Long" or "Robin Hood No. 1 1/2" They also made five shot revolvers with 2 3/4 to 3 inch barrels as the Robin Hood No. 2 and Robin Hood No. 3. Whitney Armory was descended from Eli Whitney's old musket making business, and was located in the New Haven area, although for promotional purposes they liked to use the Whitney name. Donald Webster's "Suicide Specials" book seems to be about the only reference on these ubiquitous guns that still get no respect and very modest prices. John Spangler


# 5306 - FIE Import
2/15/03

F.I.E Corp K - E15 - .22 LR - 4'' - Don't Know - E606270 -

What seems to be ivory or marble hand grips. What information are you able to provide on the pistol data provided?

Answer:
F I E is the company who imported your pistol, F I E is an acronym for Firearms Import & Export, they were located in Hialeah, FL until November of 1990 when they filed bankruptcy. References tell me that the model E15 was manufactured in Brescia, Italy. Standard finish was chrome but blue was also available. Barrels were 4_ inches and pistols could be ordered in .22 Long Rifle or .22 Magnum. As with most if not all F I E imports, there is no collector interest in the model. Value is in the $75.00 or less range. Marc


# 5277 - Sauer Identification.
2/15/03
Bill, Mountiantop, Pa.

Sauer - Pistol - 7.65m - Blue - 494955 -

Eagle standing on cross Is this really a German pistol? Not sure of make, only serial no. & cal.

Answer:
Bill, your pistol is definitely German, J.P. Sauer and Sohn (son) manufactured at least two models of 32 caliber automatics that it might be. The first was the Model 1913 which is easily recognizable because of it's prominent circular ring at the back of slide and small locking lever on the top of the ring. The 1913 was not a military issue weapon but it was bought privately by officers during World War I. I believe that it is most likely that your pistol is a Model 38 H, it has a conventional looking slide with a safety lever on the left side, and a cocking/decocking lever on the left side just behind the trigger. The 38 H was one of the most advanced designs of the time, and the cocking/decocking lever has been copied by many other gun designers since. The 38 H was sold to the German Army during WWII and also commercially from 1938 onward. Marc


# 5267 - OK To Pass Down My Mauser?
2/11/03
Larry, Norwalk, CT.

Waffenabrik Oberndorf A Neckar - Mauser - 9mm. - 6'' - Blue - 383114 -

On the back of the hammer there's what looks like a big letter S and in the middle of the S is a smaller N letter..below that is the number 114. On the left side of the barrel towards the rear there is what looks like a very small acorn. It also has a wooden holster/stock. I want to give this gun to my grandson. Is there any paper work involved in gift? Thanks, Larry

Answer:
Larry, in Utah where I live the only restrictions that I know of are that your grandson would have to reside in the same state and be over 21 years of age. Unfortunately I am not a lawyer and I do not know what local laws may apply wher you live. I am afraid that my free advise is worth about what you are paying for it. I suggest that you contact an attorney to make sure that you are adhering to all applicable laws. Marc


# 5259 - Detecting Webley Mk VI Cylinder Modifications
2/11/03
Thomas, Leland, Mississippi

Webley - Mark VI - .455 - 6 - Nickel - 335618 -

I just got a Webley Mark VI .455 revolver. I don't know weather it has been modified to be able to use ACP cartridges or not, how do I tell? Also, where can I buy ammunition for it online?

Answer:
Thomas, Mk VI Webleys that have not been modified are pretty rare, I have come across very few in the 25 plus years that I have been buying and selling firearms. If your revolver is un-modified, and in good condition, you have a real collectors prize. There are two methods that I use to determine if a Mk VI cylinder has been shortened to accept .45 ACP cartridges. First I look at the numbers that are stamped on the outside of the cylinder at the back. If the lower portion of the numbers is missing it is a good indicator that the cylinder has been shortened. Second I look at the back face of the cylinder. If the back face is flat, and/or unfinished metal, and/or shows signs of machining that do not match the rest of the revolver, there is a good chance that the cylinder has been modified. For ammunition try checking with "Ye Olde Western Scrounger" there is a link to him on our links page. Marc


# 5230 - M1841 Mississippi by Whitney
2/11/03
Dale, Decatur City, Iowa

Whitney - 1841 Mississippi - 54 - 33 inches - Brown - Unknown -

Recently purchased an 1841 Mississippi manufactured by Whitney. Rifle found in attic condition, of original 54 caliber with saber bayonet lug and long range rear sights. Listed in Flaydermans 8th Guide page 245 as one of 600 made. After a light cleaning the rifle is in V. G. to Fine condition. Question I have relates to the various markings: Lock plate marked E. Whitney over US, behind hammer N. Haven 1855. These markings appear to be correct. The top of the butt plate is marked capital letter I period . number 4 or I.4 ? ? Barrel breech marked on top W W over P which I assume are inspector initials and proof mark. There are no cartouch marks on the left side of stock. Initials J. L. R appear on stock under butt plate, inside patch box and under brass mounting left side of stock. I assume these are inspector markings but cannot find them listed as an inspector in my books. Underneath side of barrel breech marked numbers 10 and 54 and letters R X ? ? Under barrel marked letter R and numbers 54 and the letter X ? ? Does the 54 stand for the caliber ? ? No other markings exist on the rifle. Can you please help me identify these markings ? Thanks in advance !! Dale

Answer:
Dale- It looks like you have done a good job on your homework. There are a few collectors who specialize in the Mississippi rifles, and maybe they would know for sure. Everyone is waiting for T.B. to write a book on them, or at least tell someone else what to write down. Until that happens, I will just have to guess. The RX 54 are probably just assembly marks or inspector marks and I doubt if the 54 is anything more than a coincidence that it is the same as the caliber. They may be from the time of manufacture, or perhaps the 600 rifles were actually pulled from completed rifles on hand and disassembled and altered, and given match marks at that point. The JLR marks seem odd and I have a suspicion that a former owner with those initials may have put them there to identify his gun in an inconspicuous way. This free advice is probably worth about what it cost, but maybe someone else will see it and care enough to tell me I am an ignorant fool and the answer is really something else. If we don't hear from anyone, then I guess I am an all knowing genius. Gotta go change my email address.... John Spangler


# 5224 - National Guard Of Colorado M1895 Winchester
2/11/03
Michael, Colo. Spgs, Colo.

Winchester - 1895 - 30-40 Krag ? - 28 Inches - Blue - 14949 -

1B1 stamped above the rear of the barrel. K. S. M. stamped on top and in front of the hammer and on left side of lever under the trigger. NATIONAL GUARD OF COLORADO stamped on the right side. Patent dates of NOV 5 95, NOV 12 95, AUG 17 97, and JAN 25 98 stamped on the left side. B stamped on the bottom of lever. Serial No stamped on metal strap between lever and stock. Wood to within a couple of inches of the muzzle. Metal over butt of stock with compartment for (cleaning tool? ) Two piece lever. Bayonet lug. 1800 yd ladder rear sight. History? Was it used in the Spanish/American War? Is there a way to track who, specifically, might have used it and when? What about the Colo. Nat Guard stamp (details? )? Does it affect the value? Can I find an original bayonet and cleaning tool out there somewhere? 30-40 Krag cartridge loads and ejects cleanly. Is it safe to assume that's the caliber? Ballpark value range? Thanks for any info and thanks for doing this service.

Answer:
Michael- I regret that I have very few answers to your questions, but lets start with the easy ones. Yes, these were made in .30 US or .30 Army, both being contemporary names used to denote what we now cal the .30-40 Krag cartridge. The 1895 Winchester was designed for cartridges in that pressure range, and seem to work well with them, while later guns using the .30-06 were a pushing the limits of the design and materials used. Rough value is probably in the $900 up range, but someone with lust in their heart for Colorado guns may want to pay more. I have seen several of the NATIONAL GUARD OF COLORADO guns over the years, and the usual reaction seem to be something along the lines of "too bad they messed up a nice Winchester" or "gee, I hoped it was one of the U.S. marked muskets." The fantastic Colorado Gun Collectors Association show in 2000 (still the BEST gun show EVER in my opinion) featured a massive display of guns with Colorado history, and I believe there were about 6 of the 1895 Winchesters there. I cannot find the great book the CGCA did which may have more details. I do not know the numbers made for Colorado, but would guess it may have been an order for 500-1,000. The K.S.M. is the inspector mark of Kelly S. Morse who inspected the 10,000 1895 Winchester muskets delivered on a U.S. Army order in 1898-99 (but too late for the Spanish American War.) The only serial number I have for one of the U.S. order is in the 13,900 range, so yours in the 14,900 range was probably delivered in 1899, again, too late for the war. I do not know if Morse inspected all the Colorado guns, but perhaps this was an order that has somehow placed through the Army, which may have included inspection requirements. Springfield Research Service lists two Winchester 1895s (17,524 and 17,552) as surveyed by the Colorado National Guard in 1905, but that may or may not add anything useful. Although fitted with a bayonet lug, it is not clear if they were ordered with bayonets, or without. (If the latter, you don't need to fret about lacking one.) Other folks know a lot more about these, and maybe one of them will enlighten us both. As an interesting sidelight, Teddy Roosevelt took an 1895 Winchester carbine in .30-40 Krag with him to Cuba while the second in command of the "Rough Riders." John Spangler


# 5209 - Springfield M1922 .22 With 30 Inch Barrel
2/8/03
Tim, Waupaca, WI, USA

Springfield Armory - M1922 - .22 - 30 Inch - Parkerized - 5945 -

Armory marking on barrel directly behind front site. Bolt has markingM2. Also has a small marking after serial number that looks like a small "R" Have researched to some degree this SN# but only find closet numbers5933 and 5922 nothing in between can you shed some light. Thank You

Answer:
Tim- Sounds like an interesting rifle, but your description leaves us a bit confused. The M2 on the bolt suggests it is either a M2 rifle, or one that was upgraded to M2 configuration. Those made as a M2 clearly say so on the receiver. Those upgraded from the M1922 or M1922M1 usually had a "B" stamped after the serial number. The upgrades are confusing and inconsistent as some were done by the owners simply purchasing new bolts and installing them, while others were arsenal work. Your rifle is not listed in the Springfield Research Service database in any configuration. (Remember, the M1922 and M1922M1 and M2 were all made in their own serial number ranges starting at 1 and working up, so there are three possible rifle types for many numbers, confused further by the upgrades, and inconsistent record keeping.) The most interesting feature is the reported 30 inch barrel length. There were a few of the .22 rifles reportedly made with 30 inch barrels (and probably others rebarreled privately) for match use. These are very valuable and desirable. However let's be sure before you start counting dollars. Barrel length is measured from the muzzle to the face of the bolt in the closed position. John Spangler


# 5258 - Colt DA Value
2/8/03
Reggie Gaston SC

38 Colt - Nickel -

small colt(horse) on left side of gun below hammer has colt official police.38 on barrel bone handles I acquired a 38 revolver some years ago and it has police issue on it and the dates are like Aug,5,1884,july,4,1905,Oct,5,1926 the gun is in excellent condition real tight action 6 shot what would a gun of this condition go for in the resale or collector's eye I do not know what I have it has no serial numbers or model numbers on it to check it out I found this web site so I thought I would ask you Ronnie

Answer:
Ronnie, from your description of the nickel plating and the grips, it sounds like there is more pimp heritage in your Colt than there is police.

There is not a lot of collector interest or demand for the old Colt double action revolvers. I often see examples in excellent condition selling for as little as $150.00 at gunshows. Marc


# 5231 - Winchester Model 1906 Value
2/8/03
Scott Benjamin Essexville Mi

Winchester - 1906 - 22 Cal Pump - 429489 -

I would like to know what this gun is worth? It is all original. The made date on the gun was 1911. It has been in a case all of its life excellent condition.

Answer:
Scott, The Winchester Model 1906 was designed to be a lower price version of the earlier Model 1890 rifle with essentially the same action, a 20 inch round barrel instead of the longer 24-inch full octagon barrel of the 1890 and a butt stock that was changed to the shotgun type with a composition plate. The first rifles produced were chambered for the 22 Short cartridge only, but in April of 1908, changes were made in the feeding mechanism and in chambering so the rifle could fire 22 Short, 22 Long, and 22 Long Rifle rim fire cartridges, interchangeably. The change, to accommodate three lengths of 22 caliber cartridges, was a popular one, records show a remarkable increase in sales after the change was made. Approximately 848,000 Model 1906 rifles were manufactured between 1906 and 1932. The blue book lists 1906 values between $100 and $800 depending on condition. Marc


# 5227 - Try The Date Program
2/4/03
Joe- St. Croix Falls, WI 54024

Remington - 760 Pump - 30.06 - 385022 -

Just need to know what year this rifle was made-my dad gave it to me in the late 1950's or early 1960's, can't remember anymore. Thanks--Joe

Answer:
Joe, suggest that you use the OldGuns.net Remington date of manufacture program. There is a link to the program on the OldGuns.net menu. Marc


# 5558 - Griswold And Grier 36 Caliber Revolver
2/4/03
Lee

Griswold And Grier - 36 -

I have a Griswold and Grier 36 caliber revolver that is in better than good condition that I'm interested in selling, the serial number is 1724. I have attached pictures.

Answer:
Lee- first, let me state that I am NOT an expert on Confederate revolvers. However, a brief check with a respected reference indicates three major problems with your gun, compared to known originals:
a. Angle of the grips are about the same as Colts, not bent backward as would be expected on a G&G.
b. Shape of the trigger guard is more traditional Colt shape with rounded corners, not the squared off G&G shape.
c. Bullet loading cutout on right side of barrel is about same as Colt, while G&G was much smaller.

In addition, I have reservations about the color of the brass in the frame (normally brass of that period had higher copper content and more reddish tone. Also, the overall condition looks like it is something that has been artificially aged. Every detail I look at raises more concerns, and none seem to offer confirmation of authenticity. If authentic, your pistol is probably in the $20,000 range, or even higher. However, I suspect it is a $150 reproduction that have been made to look old, with a value of whatever someone properly informed about what it really is, would be willing to pay. As we would have to be prepared to testify in court as to the authenticity of any item we sold, I would not be willing to offer this as a genuine Griswold and Grier. However, it would be worth getting a second opinion from someone who is better qualified in this specialized area, just to make sure that I am not mistaken. At least you will be prepared for bad news then, and not just think whoever you go to is trying to cheat you. Good luck. Sorry it was bad news. John Spangler


# 5571 - Long Rifle
2/4/03
Rick

I am trying to identify a long rifle, supposed to be made about 1821 and converted to percussion cap around 1845 or so. It has a double set trigger, octagonal barrel. On the left side of the stock it has a check plate carved in to the stock. It has only one flute. Area around the nipple shows pitting from use, some simple engraving on hammer plate. The only identifying marks are two half moons on top of the barrel, a series of circles (8) around the muzzle of the rifle and a mark on the stock. The mark on the stock is small but looks like a pair of "tongs." On first glance it would appear to be a sliver that was replaced but upon examination it seems to be burned in to the stock. The person that owns the gun, tells me that the maker (unknown) only made two and one is supposed to be in a museum the natural history museum of Ohio. I am contacting them to see if they can give me any information. If you have no idea of who might have made the gun could you point me to someone or some book to do more research.

Answer:
Rick- If you have some photos we could probably help more. Long rifles are not uncommon, and value and demand vary greatly with the approximate date of manufacture, maker, artistic merits, degree of alteration or restoration and condition. Plain examples from the mid 1800s are common in the $300-700 range. Pre-Revolutionary War examples by famous makers with fancy inlays in superb condition will sell for thousands of dollars. If there are only two of something, then everyone would agree that it is rare. However, it is an entirely different question as to how many people care about them, and how much the value should be influenced by the fact that only two exist. The factors above are much more important in determining collector value. Typically long rifles will be found marked with the makers name on the barrel, if they are marked at all. If unmarked, then it is often possible to link them to a specific geographical area or "school of makers" by various design features, but very seldom to a specific maker. My gut feeling is that if a maker only made two long rifles, he was either not very good at it, or met a premature death, or perhaps he made a lot more that have not yet been identified as his work. If you have the chance to get to the Maryland Arms Collectors show at the Timonium MD Fairgrounds, March 15-16 you will see lots of good long rifles, and the prices are reflective of the real world values among folks who are familiar with them. That may be a lot less than the owner of this one thinks his is worth, but I could be mistaken. Hope this helps. John Spangler


# 5225 - Model 336RC Value
2/4/03
Jim Durand Mi.

Marlin - 336 rc - 35 Remington - ? - blue - p 5318 -

what's it worth?

Answer:
Jim, the 336 RC was Marlin's standard model carbine which they manufactured in .30-30, .32 Special, and .35 Remington calibers from 1948 to 1968. Blue book values for 336 RC carbines range form $120 to about $300 depending on condition. I think that the fact that your rifle is chambered in .35 Remington will make a little harder to sell. Marc


# 5550 - Winchester 66
2/1/03
Ron

Winchester - 66 - 148890 -

I've purchased a Winchester rifle model 66 (1866-1898) serial #148890 produced in 1878 12 cartridge carbine .44 rimfire carbine 28 gram black powder. 170101 produced. I really don't no much about this rifle but what I've esplanade to you, Perhaps you might have a little more information about it? I would appreciate it.

Answer:
Ron- The 1866 Winchesters is a great rifle with high values and an interesting history of uses during the settling of the west. All that is far to complicated for us to explain. For an excellent overview of Winchester as a company and how its arms fit into the life of the period, try Harold Williamson's "Winchester- The Gun that Won the West." For basic history of the 1866 and all other collectible American guns and their values try "Flayderman's Guide to Antique American Firearms and their Values," and for a more detailed nuts and bolts analysis of the 1866 to ensure every tiny detail is correct, try Art Pirkle's book on the 1866 and 1873 models in the North Cape "For Collectors Only" series. There are lots of other good Winchester books out there, including "The Winchester Book" by George Madis. Anyone able to afford a fair price for an 1866 should definitely be able to invest in the library to appreciate it. If someone is lucky enough to get a bargain price on the rifle, then they definitely have more than enough cash left to stock up on good books. Incidentally, we offer some of these on our Books page. http://oldguns.net/catbook.htm John Spangler


# 5503 - Old Military Rifle Info
2/1/03
John

Old Military Rifle -

I am buying an old military rifle. It is a .43 caliber rolling block rifle with rings for a sling. what do you think it could be.

Answer:
John- Most likely it is a Remington (made, or designed by Remington and made under license elsewhere) rolling block. These were made in several variations of .43 caliber, but most were .43 Spanish. Some were actually used by Spain, others by various South American countries, and even Egypt and some European countries. Condition is usually towards the doggy end of the spectrum, and values seem to vary quite a bit. There is an excellent site on our links page that gets into the details of many different types of the black powder cartridge rifles and they would probably have more info on these. That is a neat collecting field with a nice variety and usually modest prices. Best of all, if made prior to 1899 they are "antiques" free from the paperwork nonsense of modern guns. Hope this helps. John Spangler


# 5219 - Walther PPK Manufacture Date
2/1/03

Walther - PPK - 7.65 - 3 1/4 inches - Blued - 251005K -

Can you tell me the year made and approximate value. Gun is in excellent condition.

Answer:
A description of the proof markings on your PPK would have been helpful in verifying the manufacture date. My guess is that you have a pre-war commercial model. Commercial sales of Walther PPK pistols began about 1929 or 1930. PPK serial numbers started at 750000 and were shared with PP pistols. Blocks of serial numbers in the same series were assigned to each model. When numbers reached about one million a new series of serial numbers was initiated which began at 100000. In the new series PPK serial numbers had a "K" suffix and PP serial numbers had a "P" suffix. The "K" suffix of your serial number leads me to believe that your pistol falls in to this serial number range. Military procurement of Walther PPK pistols started around 1940 at about serial number 270000K so my guess is that your pistol (serial number 251005K) was manufactured some time prior to 1940. Blue book values for pre-war PPK pistols range form $200 to $675 depending on condition. It has been my experience that pre-war commercial PPK pistols are much slower sellers than wartime models with military markings. I think that a more realistic price for your pistol would be in the $400 to $450 range. Marc


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