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                                                BILL GOODMAN,  P. O. BOX 2002,  BOZEMAN,  MONTANA  59771

   TEL. (406) 587-3131        FAX (406) 219-3415 

                                        EMAIL:  montanaraven@hotmail.com

      Bill Goodman has been a collector of antique/collector firearms for well over 40 years and a full time dealer for over 30 years.  Traveling around the country constantly seeking good quality collector arms at REALISTIC PRICES, Bill sells exclusively by mail order.  Until recently, he has advertised in every issue of The Gun List  (now Gun Digest the Magazine) since it's first small issues in the early 1980s (as well as The Shotgun News before that). All items are photographed. To view them just click the text of the item you want to see. Be sure to scroll down as most items have more than one photo.  All guns are sold as collector's items, not shooters.  If you wish to shoot an item listed here, it is strongly recommended that you have the item checked out by a competent gunsmith who specializes in antique/classic firearms. All items are sold with the usual three (3) day inspection.  If for any reason you are not satisfied with your purchase, call to say you are returning the item and you will receive an immediate refund when the item is received back in the same condition it was originally shipped. This list will be constantly updated as new items become available.  Use the above phone number to call to check availability and for info on any item you wish to purchase. Prices do not include shipping. All federal/state laws concerning the transfer of firearms are strictly followed.  Modern firearms must be shipped to an FFL dealer (or "Curio & Relics" license holders where applicable).  Pre-1899 antiques may be shipped to non-FFL holders. All Layaway sales are final. AND PLEASE, MAKE CHECKS TO WILLIAM (OR BILL) GOODMAN AND NOT GOODMANGUNS. 

 

 

MORE GUNS WERE POSTED ON 7/17/19. WATCH FOR FREQUENT POSTINGS THROUGH JULY.

 

 

 

NOTES FROM THE FIELD: FINALLY, MY SECOND NOVEL IS OUT! First, I'd like to thank everyone who read my first novel, DESERT SUNDAYS, and kept after me to get the second one done and published! So, after the usual delays and hitches, here it is. This one is called AN OBVIOUS SLAM DUNK and if you like courtroom scenes and a story that not only makes you think, but surprises you...well, this is a page turner I know you'll like. And before anyone asks, yes, the third novel is almost done and I hope to get that one out before too long. All three form a trilogy, but each stands alone, so it doesn't matter which you read first. Both are available on Amazon or Barnes and Noble (Kindle downloads too). If you want to save some money and have a signed copy, I have books here that I can sell cheaper than online at $13 each including shipping. Click here to see both books front and back with a synopsis of each.  Don't bother to call to reserve a copy, just toss a check in the mail with shipping instructions. Thanks, Bill Goodman

 

 

COLT FIRE ARMS (click text for photo)

 

1) SINGLE ACTION ARMY .38-40, 4 ¾” BARREL, #309XXX, MADE 1909.  This is a nice unaltered example with all matching numbers, front sight has not been fled, still has a trace of light case color in front of the cylinder. The barrel has the correct two line barrel address and all markings are fine. Barrel and ejector housing are mostly an uncleaned gray/brown with some small areas of blue in the more protected places. Frame is a cloudy dark gray with good screws. Cylinder shows some aged blue with more in the flutes and basically matches the rest of the gun. Some good blue remains on the upper portion of the back strap, on the butt and around the protected areas of the trigger guard with the balance gray/brown. Grips are not chipped or cracked and fit well but show no number inside- just the initials “BL” which is very common on Single Actions as cowboys would put their initials inside so that if someone stole their gun and claimed it was theirs, simply removing the grips would prove ownership! I’ve seen people do this on modern guns as well. Tight action, fine bore with sharp rifling. Nice overall attractive and un-abused appearance. (4 photos) $2350.

2) VERY FINE LIGHTNING .38 COLT CALIBER DOUBLE ACTION WITH SCARCE AND DESIRABLE 6” BARREL AND EJECTOR, #151XXX, MADE 1904. A really nice example with excellent tight action (these often not functioning properly). Matching serial numbers. Most of the cylinder blue remains as does the barrel blue with only the usual silver streak down the left side of the barrel and on the outside of the ejector housing- typical of long barrel holster revolvers. Bright fire blue on the top back half of the hammer with the front section fading. Grip straps mostly silvered with nice blue on the sides of the trigger guard, still shows good faded and cloudy case colors with more vivid colors in the protected areas. Minty sharp bore and unaltered front sight, exc. grips. Very hard to find Lightnings in this condition especially in the long barrel with ejector models. (4 photos) $1295.

4) HISTORICAL, EARLY, GREAT FACTORY LETTER MODEL 1902 MILITARY AUTO, .38 ACP, SHIPPED 1904.  This is the best possible factory letter one could hope for as the records show this pistol as being shipped on August 11, 1904 to: COPPER QUEEN CONSOLIDATED MINING CO., DOUGLAS. TERRITORY OF ARIZONA! On top of all that, this 115 year old Colt is in remarkable condition. First off, Douglas, Arizona is a border town with a border crossing to Mexico. The Copper Queen Mining Co. began operations in Douglas in 1904, the year this Colt was delivered there. Being only a few years prior to the Mexican Revolution, this was a particularly violent and turbulent time and place. In 1904 Douglas, Arizona Territory was full of miners, cowboys, Arizona Rangers and a whole host of other Old West characters. Pancho Villa threatened to attack Douglas during the Mexican Revolution! The Colt Model 1902 was a popular early automatic pistol especially in Mexico. The Mexican government even ordered a number of them with pearl grips- very few of these have survived and even fewer have ever made it back to the U.S. Only a total of about 18,000 1902 Military Models were made from 1902-1928. Early examples like this are even more scarce. This one has the early round of “stub” hammer along with excellent hard rubber grips and lanyard swivel. All slide markings are sharp and clear. This was one of the earliest examples with rear slide serrations. The left side of the slide is marked “Patented” over “April 20,1897 September 9, 1902.” With other Colt patent/address markings. The right side has the correct “Automatic Colt” over “Calibre .38 Rimless Smokeless” etc. The slide retains excellent deep, high polish blue with only normal light edge/muzzle wear. The magazine is marked “MIL COLT 38 CAL” and retains most of the blue- a correct later magazine. The grip straps and bottom of the trigger guard are mainly gray with fine blue on the sides of the frame with some light thinning of the blue on the bottom section under the slide. Sights are correct and unaltered, bore is minty bright, nice fire blue remains on the trigger sides, tight action and great overall appearance. Colt began making auto pistols in 1900 and this is one of the earliest. Combining that with condition and Arizona Territory shipment to a particularly historically significant area makes this a real Colt prize.(5 photos: note that the blue in the photos looks a bit dull, not so, it is high polish as can be seen in photo #4) $3250.

5) UNUSUALLY FINE CONDITION U.S. MODEL 1878/1902 .45 COLT CALIBER, 6” BARREL, DOUBLE ACTION REVOLVER, #452XX.  This is the classic revolver made for the Philippine Insurrection after the United States took possession of the Philippines after the short-lived Spanish-American War (what Teddy Roosevelt called “A splendid little war!) All correct government inspector stamp of "RAC" (Renaldo A. Carr) on the frame, back of the cylinder and trigger guard. Only 4,600 of this distinct variation of the Model 1878 were made and are serial numbered between 43,401 to 48097. This particular Colt has an extremely low number for this model and was probably one of the first of its kind to be issued to troops in the Philippines. The large trigger guard sets this unique model apart from the similar commercial Model 1878, the reason for which, as explained in Wilkerson's excellent book on the Colt 1878, is simply that the main hammer spring wasn't strong enough in the standard commercial Model 1878 Double Action Revolver to reliably ignite the primers on military manufactured .45 Colt ammo.  In order to increase the spring power and still make it possible to fire the revolver double action by pulling the trigger to cock and fire the weapon, the trigger had to be lengthened for more leverage and thus the bigger trigger guard! It's as simple as that. It has excellent Colt embossed hard rubber grips, lanyard swivel intact and unaltered front sight. The barrel shows fine aged blue overall with only light muzzle wear mainly on the left side and retains brighter blue in all the more protected areas. Exc. barrel markings along with the correct “US” on the frame below the cylinder on the right side, “1902” on the right side frame just above the rear trigger guard bow and “JTT” inspection stamp on the right side frame above the grip panel. There is a rack number “23” also stamped by the “US” marking on one side of the frame and on the opposite left side below the cylinder on the frame. The cylinder retains fine deep blue that is only lightly worn and the frame sides also retain fine blue that shows some edge wear and ageing. Back strap is turning an uncleaned plum with good lightly aged blue on the front strap and trigger guard bottom. There is nice fire blue on the hammer back and sides of the trigger, exc. cylinder pin, ejector housing shows thinning blue wear to the outside with fine blue on the top and bottom flutes. Tight action and exc. bore. Much better condition than normally encountered. $1895. (click on the underlined sections for photos)

6) SIMPLY A GEM OF AN EARLY DOUBLE ACTION COLT! THIS IS A 1912 MANUFACTURED POLICE POSITIVE .32 COLT CALIBER REVOLVER WITH SCARCE AND DESIRABLE 6” BARREL IN ABSOLUTELY SUPERB CONDITION! This example with serial number 107XXX appears to be unfired. It retains all the blue on the front face of the cylinder which indicates it was probably never fired as this blue blows off quickly from the powder blast of the cartridges being fired. Usually this model Colt was used as a pocket gun and examples are seldom found with barrels longer than 4 inches. The 6" length was the longest offered by Colt and  is seldom encountered. It retains nearly all the early high polish blue of this period that is second to none in quality. All markings are sharp and clear including the early “Stylized C” and rampant colt on the frame. Last patent date on the barrel is 1905. The side of the barrel is marked “POLICE POSITIVE .32 COLT CTG.” The back of the hammer and  all of the trigger retain the rich fire blue. There is not even a cylinder drag line. If one looks very, very carefully it is possible to fine a few tiny spots of blue freckling/browning on the barrel…but you’d have to look hard and one tiny scuff on the right side of the frame. Perfect grips, perfect inside, all the blue on the ejector rod stem intact! This one just needs a box! Finally, these hand tuned and fitted early Colts and S&Ws are getting the due they deserve by collectors who now realize guns like this 106 year old Colt will never be made again or equaled in quality. This one would be hard to improve upon. $1100.

7) CLASSIC MODEL 1903 POCKET HAMMERLESS .32 ACP PISTOL, #319XXX, MADE 1919.  This is the iconic Roaring Twenties gangster gun. I don’t think any other .32 auto is as recognizable as the 1903 Colt. This is a nice example with fine blue overall that shows just some normal very light edge wear with gray on the grip safety and some thinning of the blue on the front strap. Two-tone magazine is marked “CAL .32 COLT” on the bottom. Excellent hard rubber grips, exc. markings, tight action, exc. bore, grip safety and manual safety both function perfectly; front sight has not been altered. These used to be common, but don’t show up very often now. $695.

8) HIGH CONDITION AND VERY HARD TO FIND BANKER SPECIAL, .38 NEW POLICE (.38 S&W) CALIBER, WITH EARLY SQUARE BUTT, #350XXX, MADE AT THE BEGINNING OF THE GREAT DEPRESSION IN 1931. The Banker Special was basically a special run of the Police Positive model, but made only with a 2” barrel. They were made from 1928-1943. Only the earliest examples have the desirable square butt which was changed to the round butt in 1933. This excellent example shows nearly all the original deep blue with the exception of the back strap which has thinned. Interestingly, the butt is stamped “No. 12794” which probably indicates a badge number or something similar as some of this model was issued to the U.S. Post Office or express agencies etc. A Colt factory letter might be historically revealing on this one. Great fire blue on the back of the hammer and on the trigger, exc. checkered walnut grips show light holster wear mainly on the bottom edge. All markings sharp and clear, tight action, exc. bore and unaltered front sight. One of the more difficult of the Pre-War Colt double actions to locate in any condition. $1395.

9) SUPERB QUALITY COLT MATCH TARGET .22 LR AUTO PISTOL, #175XXX S, MADE 1957. One of the all time great .22 target pistols, the all steel Match Target is in a category of its own. This early example from the Eisenhower days (!) shows light use only. It retains the full blue finish with only very light edge and handling wear. Correct black thumb-rest grips and Colt marked magazine. Perfect bright bore and tight mechanics with typical great Match Target trigger pull. All exc. sharp markings. Colt will never again produce guns like this…how unfortunate! $1100.

10) RARE VARIATION FIRST SERIES COBRA, .38 SPECIAL WITH ALMOST NEVER SEEN 3” BARREL, #211XXX LW, MADE 1966. The Cobra was Colt’s first “Snake Gun” with production beginning in 1950. This was an aluminum frame lightweight revolver based on the popular Detective Special that was introduced Pre-World War II.  Almost all of the .38 Special Cobras came standard with a 2” barrel. Any other length is considered rare. This example was made in 1966- the first year of introduction for the larger checkered walnut grips re is that extended below the butt. Overall, this 53 year old Colt shows no real use. The almost no cylinder drag line and the front of the cylinder retains about all the blue- this is quickly blown away from the first box or two of cartridges fired. If one were to look very carefully a few of the most minor handling marks might be found, but that’s about all. Simply beautiful condition inside and out. Very unusual and hard to find Cobra variation. $950.

                      

MARLIN  (click text for photos).

1) ONE OF THE MOST DIFFICULT OF THE EARLY MARLINS TO ACQUIRE IS THIS MODEL 1889 SADDLE RING CARBINE IN .38-40 CALIBER, #90XXX, MADE 1893. It is my belief that most of these carbines were shipped to South America or exported elsewhere as they simply never seem to show up. Marlin is known to have shipped numerous carbines and trapper carbines to Chile and other countries south of our border and I believe this is where most of the 1889 carbines ended up being shipped. It also seems that most 1889 rifles and carbines have seen considerable use and often abuse- especially those in the two larger calibers of .38-40 and .44-40. The carbines especially that I have seen over the years have usually been in terrible condition. This is one of the better ones. The barrel and mag tube show thinning aged blue mixing brown with good blue on the bottom of the barrel/top of the mag tube and in the more protect appeared areas. The barrel markings are sharp. It retains the correct ladder carbine sight with slide intact and carbine front sight. The receiver blue is ageing/mixing brown with some gray and shows good blue in the protected areas around the saddle ring etc. The butt stock appears to have been very lightly gone over at some point, but not heavily sanded- just enough to have some rounded edges where the wood meets the receiver and one small spot of wood fill where there was a shallow chip behind the lower tang- minor. The butt plate is clearly stamped with a matching serial number on the inside. Fine forend that has not been touched. Good blue on the loading gate, fine action with only the half-cock on the hammer weak. Surprisingly fine bore with sharp rifling throughout. Overall a very nice and attractive appearance. Super hard to find model! $1950.

2) VERY EARLY FIRST YEAR PRODUCTION, SPECIAL ORDER 1894 .38-40 OCTAGON RIFLE WITH SUPER RARE 28” BARREL AND FULL MAGAZINE, #110XXX, MADE 1894. The earliest 1894s were made with no model designation or markings on the upper tang. This one is fitted with a Lyman tang sight fitted correctly in the two factory drilled tang sight holes in the upper tang…and underneath are NO markings (or any extra holes!). Very few of these early rifles were ordered with extra length barrels and this one is 4” longer than the standard 24” length. Butt stock and forend show minimal handling marks and display tight wood to metal fit, receiver is mostly a mottled gray with good blue on the loading gate, fine deep barrel blue showing light age only, mag tube blue ageing/mixing heavily with an uncleaned brown. Lyman tang sight is mated with a Marbles ivory bead 34W front sight with buckhorn rear sight. Tight action, fine bore is a bit dark with strong rifling and looks like it needs a good clean to clear some leading from the grooves. This is a really rare early 1894. $1950.

3) MODEL ’94 .38-40 OCTAGON RIFLE, #412XXX, MADE C.1909. A fine example that retains most of the deep factory blue on the barrel and magazine showing only light darkening from age, exc. markings, receiver case colors have faded to a heavily mottled gray with good blue on the bolt and loading gate, original Rocky Mountain blade front sight with original buckhorn rear sight, excellent walnut butt stock and forend with tight wood to metal fit and only a little spot of surface chipping by the side of the butt plate near the toe on the right side- very minor and hardly worth mentioning. Fine+ bore with some very light scattered surface roughness that ought to brush out better, tight action. Very attractive overall appearance, $1595.

4) ONLY MADE ONE YEAR! MODEL 1936 SPORTING CARBINE, .30-30 CALIBER.  This model was begun late in 1936 and in 1937 the model designation was changed to Model 36. Some early M-1936s had flat hammer springs with the later ones having coil springs- those with the coil spring have a “B” prefix t the serial number. This one has the updated coil spring and is serial number B 5XXX. The 1936 was made in a 24” rifle version a 20” carbine version with full magazine and barrel bands etc. and a Sporting Carbine with 20” barrel, rifle style steel forend cap, no barrel bands and a 20” barrel with the ramp front sight dovetailed into the barrel (this is correct for this model). The Sporting Carbine seems less often encountered than the rifle version and all Model 1936 marked Marlins are seldom seen. This one has fine lightly faded case colors on the receiver, exc. blue on the barrel, magazine and forend cap, exc. bore and tight action. The stock is generally excellent with only light handling marks. There are a few more handling marks on the right side of the forend from normal usage. Correct buckhorn and ramped front sights. Correct hard rubber butt plate and Marlin Safety markings on the receiver top. One of the more scarce Marlin deer-caliber rifles made during the height of the Great Depression when sales were slow and production limited. (5 photos)  $1295.

5) MODEL 39 CENTURY LIMITED, .22 S, L & LR, 20 INCH OCTAGON BARREL, ONLY MADE 1970 TO COMMEMORATE 100 YEARS OF MARLIN FIREARMS.  This one is in about new condition showing no wear. It has the correct brass “coin” medallion in the right side of the receiver showing the Marlin horse and rider logo with 1870 and 1970 dates. The right side of the stock also has the brass oval plate stating “39 CENTURY LTD” with “MARLIN 100 YEARS” etc. Mounted with a Weaver D4 .22 scope on the correct base complete with lens covers. It also has the original buckhorn and blade/bead front sights with gold trigger and distinctive brass forend cap and brass butt plate. Comes with the original 39 Century Limited owners manual. One of the most handsome Model 39s Marlin ever made at the North Haven, CT factory. These don’t show up much any more. $1150.

 

 

                A NOTE ABOUT "MODERN MARLINS": Marlin has closed its doors for good in North Haven, Connecticut and been bought out by the folks who own Remington. It looks like some  models have been put back into production with the barrels marked "Utica, New York."  I did see one of the new ones with the old North Haven barrel address so I assume they had left over barrels they were using up.  Quality in wood  to metal fit was fair at best and trigger pulls were off the scale heavy!  I don't know if any of the octagon barrel "cowboy models" will be produced again, although their online catalogue does show a model 1894 cowboy-type with octagon barrel in .45 Colt.

1) PRE-SAFETY SCARCE 1894 .357 CARBINE, MADE 1982. These are particularly hard to find now, correct 18 ½” barrel, buckhorn rear sight with bead front sight, has a scope base correctly mounted in the factory holes, retains nearly all the blue, excellent wood and has a single quick detachable sling swivel stud in the “bullseye” in the bottom of the stock. If you wanted to, you could remove it and replace the little bullseye inlay that is available through several sources. Tight action and perfect bore. $895.

 

 

ANTIQUE & CLASSIC RIFLES, SHOTGUNS AND PISTOLS (click text for photos)   

1) EXTREMELY RARE AND HISTORICAL SPRINGFIELD ALTERED SHARPS MODEL 1870 MILITARY RIFLE, .50-70 CALIBER, ONLY 700 MADE.  In conjunction with the Sharps Rifle Company, Springfield took altered percussion Civil War actions and fitted them with two band military stocks with cleaning rod underneath. Ordnance reports show that Springfield manufactured newly fabricated parts to complete these rifles. After completion, most were shipped to the West for trials during the Indian Wars. The locks, levers, breech blocks, trigger plates and lever catches were case colored while the barrels, sling swivels, butt plates, cleaning rods and barrel bands were left in the white with no finish applied. This is a truly superb example that has never been cleaned or polished. The receiver is mostly cloudy gray with good case colors remaining in the more protected areas with correct Sharps markings. Correct original Springfield sights and cleaning rod. All the parts listed as left “in the white” have now taken on an attractive dark gray/brown smooth patina- this shows it has never been polished bright or cleaned. There is a completely readable “E.S.A.” cartouche in an oval on the stock which is also in excellent condition with tight wood to metal fit. Matching serial number on the receiver and barrel. Bore is generally excellent and bright with only very light scattered surface roughness. Comes with military leather sling attached plus a U.S. marked angular bayonet with scabbard- scabbard a bit rough. One of the best of these I’ve seen. $4250.

2) EARLY SAVAGE MODEL 23 SPORTER .25-20 BOLT ACTION RIFLE, MADE 1920-1930s. It is my understanding that the early examples have a cocking head like on a 1903 Springfield and this one has that feature (handy when you want to keep a round in the chamber with the rifle un-cocked- just ease the cocking head down and then pull it back for the shot). Also it has no visible magazine release- one simply grasps the magazine on the finger serrations on the side, pushed forward and the magazine comes out. The original magazine is marked “Savage Sporter” with correct caliber designation. Bore is bright and excellent. Buckhorn rear sight with Rocky Mountain blade front sight. Still retains most of the barrel and action blue. Smooth steel shotgun butt plate is Savage marked. Fine stock showing minimal dings etc. which is unusual for a “utility” rifle like this that typically saw lots of use and little care. Has two very small sling swivel holes that would benefit from swivel studs. Classic pre-war style schnable forend tip and pistol grip. Exc. markings.  Lots of life left in this one. Came right out of here in Montana. $495.

 

MODERN AND CUSTOM CLASSIC FIREARMS (click text for photos)

1) HARRINGTON AND RICHARDSON MODEL 1871 "BUFFALO CLASSIC" .45-70 SINGLE SHOT RIFLE (see below in Shiloh Sharps and Reproduction section)

2) HARRINGTON AND RICHARDSON 1873 OFFICERS MODEL TRAPDOOR .45-70 (see below in the Shiloh Sharps and Reproduction section)

 

 REMINGTON (click text for photos)

1) ROLLING BLOCK .50-70 CALIBER NEW YORK STATE CONTRACT MUSKET, MADE 1871.  According to George Layman’s excellent book REMINGTON ROLLING BLOCK MILITARY RIFLES OF THE WORLD, this example is a 1st Contract musket as the last patent date on the upper tang is 1871. The later 2nd Contract arms were delivered in 1873 and have later patent dates. This is one of the early rifles finished entirely in the white. Some were made with case colored receivers and blued barrels or receivers bright and blued barrels. This rifle has two good rectangular stock cartouches on the wrist- one on each side by the receiver and also has a unit stamping in the wrist on the left side “A10” and there is also a typical rack or unit stamping on the top of the butt plate. Metal is original, excellent and free of pits or any tell-tale polishing marks. Stock and forend generally excellent with minor handling marks only and tight wood to metal fit. Cleaning rod is intact. Correct military style ladder rear sight with slide. Bright, sharp excellent bore! Sling swivels intact. Has the correct high hammer and wonderful action that after the breech block is closed on a live round, the hammer drips about 1/8” into a safety notch…why Remington didn’t incorporate this feature into all of its rifles is a mystery as it is a simple and usable safety that allows the shooter to carry the rifle with a round in the chamber without having to manually drop the hammer to half cock. Very fine example of an early New York Contract musket. $1295.

2) EXCELLENT AND RARE U.S. ARMY ISSUED MODEL 1871 .50 CALIBER CENTER FIRE ROLLING BLOCK PISTOL. Approximately 6,000 of these handsome pistols were made in the 1870s with 1,000 sold on the civilian market and 5,000 issued the U.S. Government. This is one of the latter and shows a fine “CRS” in a rectangle cartouche on the left bottom grip- these almost always worn away. This example shows vivid case colors on the left side of the frame with the right side case colors still very apparent but faded darker, there is bright case color on the protected areas around the hammer, upper sides of the frame/trigger guard etc. Even the grip straps show some fading case color. Fine walnut grips without the usual dings on the butt that most seem to have from using it as a tack hammer! (Almost all of these I’ve seen have this). There is a number “53” stamped in the upper left grip side which was probably a rack or unit number. Excellent screws, MINT BORE, tight action, the hammer and breech block were finished “bright and in the white” and this example still retains the bright look with minimal spotting or staining. Exc. markings including the P and S inspector stamps on the side of the frame along with the Remington markings. These historical arms are quite scarce and this is one of the better ones I’ve seen in a long time. $2150.

3) OUTSTANDING MODEL 1901 ROLLING BLOCK MUSKET IN 7MM MAUSER CALIBER. One of the best I’ve seen in a long time, this example shows fine case colors on the receiver, excellent blue on the barrel, exc. walnut stock and handguard, correct sling swivels and cleaning rod intact (these often missing), original military style ladder rear sight with slide intact (again, these often missing), excellent deep blue on the hammer and breech block as well as on the two main receiver pins and retainer on the left side, exc. deep barrel blue, tight action, bore needs a good scrub but will be excellent, sharp markings on the tang with last patent date 1901 with no foreign proofs or foreign cartouche stampings in the stock, and all in about as nice as one could hope to find without somehow being brand new! (4 photos) $995.

4) MODEL 25 PUMP ACTION RIFLE IN .25-20 CALIBER.  By the “W E” code on the barrel side, this rifle was made at the height of the Great Depression in 1936. Fine example with exc. receiver blue that shows a little dulling from age and some edge wear on the bottom. All markings are sharp and clear. Barrel blue is also fine with only some handling wear to the blue toward the rear top of the barrel- minor. Also fine blue on the mag. tube. Has a small blade/bead front sight, slot filler in the rear dovetail and a fully adjustable receiver peep sight mounted correctly in the two factory drilled holes at the rear edge of the receiver. Bore is bright, action is tight, forend is excellent and butt stock has no cracks, but shows some flaking to the heavy factory finish mainly toward the bottom left side. Correct Remington marked crescent steel butt plate. Fine example and getting hard to find. $995.

 

SHILOH SHARPS AND OTHER REPRODUCTIONS.  Note: I am a Shiloh Sharps dealer and can order you any Shiloh you want. Check out my other website for Shilohs: www.shiloh-ballard.com (click text for photos)..

1) HARRINGTON AND RICHARDSON MODEL 1871 "BUFFALO CLASSIC" .45-70 TOP BREAK SINGLE SHOT RIFLE. This is a discontinued model that is still quite popular. This example has a 32” round barrel fitted with a Williams fully adjustable rear sight matched with a red fiber optic blade front sight for enhanced visibility especially in the hunting field. The checkered forearm and butt stock show some handling marks, but are basically solid and well fitting. There is some nice grain pattern to the stock which is fitted with a case colored butt plate. Stock screws are an attractive brass and the receiver is finished in a dark blue/gray case color pattern. Tight action and excellent bore with target crown. These don't turn up for sale too often.  Lots of fun shooting without paying a fortune! $575.

2) HARRINGTON AND RICHARDSON OFFICERS MODEL TRAPDOOR .45-70 CALIBER SINGLE SHOT RIFLE. These were made the U.S. and whenever I get one of these I always say they are still a great bargain on the reproduction market today…when they can be found. Beautifully reproduced from the original Springfield Officers Model, the H&R has the correct fancy pewter tip, wiping rod, engraved lock, hammer, breech block, trigger guard, barrel band and butt plate. The forend and wrist are sharply checkered, all metal parts except the barrel and barrel band are nicely case colored and the rifle is fitted with a sporting tang sight with blade/bead front sight. In an early 1970s annual issue of Gun Digest, Ken Waters did an article on shooting the various .45-70 rifles that were available at the time and found the H&R Officers Model to be the most accurate!  This one is in near new condition. These don't show up often any more. (3 photos)  $1195.

3) SHILOH 1874 .45-70 THREE BAND MILITARY RIFLE WITH GREAT OPTIONS, MADE IN BIG TIMBER, MONTANA.  As I have been a Shiloh dealer since the 1990s, I originally sold this special order rifle in 2007. It is still new and unfired! The Military Rifle is no longer cataloged and they rarely show up for sale on the used market. This example was special custom ordered with double set triggers (standard was single), hand selected walnut for dark color and nice grain, AA finish on the wood, polished barrel, polished and fire blued screws with brass escutcheons, patchbox, bone and charcoal pack hardened case colors and fitted with sling (marked “S. Isaac Campbell & Company, England”). A very special Shiloh in unfired condition that is no longer available, complete with inspection tag! $3750.

4) BEAUTIFUL AND UNUSUAL CUSTOM C. SHARPS ARMS, BIG TIMBER, MONTANA MADE 1874 .45-70, 28” HALF OCTAGON SPORTER. I believe this is a special made rifle as the left side of the receiver has the company name and address stamped in a half circle motif with the serial number in the middle, “74-1500.” I assume this is the 1500th Model 1874 they made. The wood is a non-standard nicely grained English Walnut. The straight grip butt stock has a cheek piece with accent line and checkered steel shotgun butt plate. The forend has the traditional pewter and both forend and wrist are beautifully sharply checkered. This rifle sports double set triggers and has a case colored breech block- first C. Sharps I’ve seen with this as all others have been left bright or “in the white.” It also has a “CSA” marked mid-range vernier tang sight adjustable for both windage and elevation plus a Hadley eye disc with different aperture peep diameters. The barrel is mounted with a full buckhorn Lawrence ladder rear sight mated with a blade front sight. Overall this one looks new and unfired. It weighs approx. 10 ½ lbs and would make a stunning hunting rifle! ( 3 photos) $2950.

 

 

SMITH AND WESSON (click text for photos)

1) TARGET SIGHTED, PRE-WAR .38 SPECIAL HAND EJECTOR M-1905 4TH CHANGE, #582XXX, MADE DURING THE GREAT DEPRESSION YEARS OF THE 1930s. This along with the Colt Officers Model revolvers were the most popular revolvers used in the popular bullseye matches of the day. During the Depression, with sales very low S&W kept only the best craftsmen employed. The fit, finish and hand honed actions of this decade were second to none. Simply put, the quality was unsurpassed and the actions and triggers have to be felt to be believed. This example with standard 6” barrel has a white outline adjustable rear sight paired with a tall “King Patent” front sight with red ball insert. It shows fine blue overall with just some blue wear on the sides of the barrel and on the edges. All markings are sharp and clear. Matching numbers on the cylinder, barrel and frame.  Excellent diamond checkered grips, exc. bright bore and fine action. These would be too cost prohibitive to produce today! $950.

2) OUTSTANDING AND RARE MODEL 1896, .32 HAND EJECTOR FIRST MODEL D.A., #6XXX, MADE FROM 1896-1903.  Only 19,712 of these historic .32 S&W Long chambered revolvers were made and serial numbered from 1 on up. This antique example has a 4 ¼” barrel and is imply a superb example and I don’t recall seeing one any better. This was S&Ws first side swing cylinder revolver and is unusual in that it has the cylinder stop in the top strap as well as no side-latch cylinder release- instead one pulls the ejector rod tip forward to release the cylinder. Unique to this model is that S&W put all the patent date markings and address on the cylinder between the flutes! Screws are excellent and overall the revolver retains about all the original bright nickel with only some minor surface scratching and some light freckling on the cylinder. Tight action and bore is generally excellent with maybe some scattered surface roughness that might brush out. Front sight has not been altered, sharp markings, matching numbers including inside the exc. hard rubber grips. Almost never seen especially in this state of high condition. (NOTE: looks much, much better in person than in photos- bright photo light reflection brings out every surface scratch and mark that you can barely see in person) $895.

3) EXCELLENT CONDITION .32-20 HAND EJECTOR 3RD CHANGE, 4” BARREL NUMBER 55XXX, MADE 1909-1915. This is a mid-production revolver probably made in 1911 or 1912 as serial numbers ran from 45201-65700 with 20,499 being made before the 4th Change was introduced which ran until 1940. This is a truly fine condition example that shows about all the blue on the front face of the cylinder indicating that this revolver may never have been fired- the blue in this area “blows off” quickly from the hot gasses produced from firing cartridges. About all the vivid case colors remain on the hammer and trigger, exc. diamond checkered grips with deep dish gold S&W medallions are in beautiful condition. Nearly all the blue remains on this revolver except for a slight amount of edge or carry/handling wear too minor to describe and some very minor thinning of the blue on the center of the back strap- but still blue, NOT worn to gray. Tight action, perfect bore. A fairly scarce model not often encountered. For comparison, nearly 79,000 4th Models were made. Revolvers in .32-20 caliber were usually paired with a rifle or carbine of the same chambering. Most were chosen as field guns and typically saw heavy use. This one is in superior condition overall. $895.

4) IF YOU LIKE HISTORICALLY MARKED REVOLVERS, THIS ONE IS A PRIZE!  PRE-MODEL 10, FIVE-SCREW .38 SPECIAL WITH RARE 2” BARREL, ROUND BUTT, NICKEL FINISH WITH THE BACK STRAP MARKED “DETROIT POLICE 10204,” SERIAL NUMBER C208XXX, MADE IN 1950. The right grip panel has been replaced with a black synthetic grip panel with the top extension part made to act as a “belt stop” so the revolver could be worn inside the pants without a holster using the grip to catch over a pants belt! The left grip panel is the normal diamond checkered style with S&W medallion. There is a “N” stamping on the frame under the grips as well as under the barrel by the matching serial number to indicate nickel finish. Matching number on the butt, barrel and cylinder. About all the bright nickel remains with only minor edge wear and there is fine case color on the hammer and trigger. Probably a detective’s revolver. I’m sure there are a lot of great stories in this scarce variation Pre-Model 10! $895

5) EXTREMELY SCARCE ADJUSTABLE SIGHTED, TARGET VERSION M-36 CHIEF SPECIAL, 2” SQUARE BUTT .38 SPECIAL REVOLVER, ONE OF A RUN OF 1,001 OF THESE MADE IN 1966! This and the also rare and identical M-50 target sighted Chief Special are identical. Most of these seem to be the M-36-1 with fewer being the non-dash M-36, like this one.  Looks to be unfired and about new as the blue is all intact on the face of the cylinder, and all the rest of the bright blue remains with only a very small spot of brown on the butt and a tiny peel spot on the left side of the frame at the juncture of the top of the recoil shield. The medallion diamond checkered grips are in similar condition. Interestingly, this revolver is in the correct 1966 serial range of these- 391XX1 and the grips are numbered identically except for the last digit which is 391XX2- obviously a factory mix-up during final assembly. One of the most rare and desirable of the Post-War S&Ws that just never seem to come up for sale. (note: what looks like scratches in the top photo is just light reflection off oil) $1195.

 

U.S. MILITARY AND SPRINGFIELD (click text for photos

1) EARLY MODEL 1879 .45-70 TRAPDOOR RIFLE, #152XXX, MADE 1881. A really fine example with a very sharp 1881 cartouche and Circle P cartouche. Excellent stock showing very light handing only with tight wood to metal fit, barrel blue shows a little age and some light mixing plum, but still fine, correct rear sight with original slotless screws, breech block correctly marked “US MODEL 1873” and is a dark gray/brown color with good case color on the upper tang. Lower tang shows good blue with thinning blue on the bottom of the trigger guard bow only. Bore is fine+ and shows good rifling throughout with only light surface roughness that looks like it will brush out after a good oiling. As I always say, these original Trapdoors with cartouches are great bargains on the collector market today as they are superbly built, popular .45-70 caliber and very historical! The Italian reproductions cost more than this one is priced! $975.

2) EXTREMELY HARD TO FIND FIRST YEAR PRODUCTION “ANTIQUE” MODEL 1898 KRAG RIFLE, #122XXX, MADE 1898. This was the final style of the famed Krag and only those few first year rifles qualify as antique- below serial number 152670. Additionally, this unaltered rifle still retains the light but fully readable 1898 dated stock cartouche as well as the earlier Model 1896 rear sight. Dark walnut stock and handguard are excellent and have never been sanded or refinished. The wood shows very minimal handling. Barrel blue is intact and showing some thinning and age only, but retains good color. Receiver is aged gray/brown with good blue on the extractor. All markings are sharp and clear, bore is excellent and bright, and only the pinned front sight blade appears altered- easy to replace. Tight action and comes with military sling and still retains the steel oil bottle in the trap in the butt plate. These are really hard to come by especially with matching date stock cartouche. $1395.

3) COLT 1878/1902 U.S. ARMY .45 COLT DA REVOLVER  (see above in Colt section)

4) SPRINGFIELD-SHARPS MODEL 1870 .50-70 MILITARY RIFLE (see above in Antique/Classic section)

5) REMINGTON 1871 ARMY ROLLING BLOCK PISTOL (see above in Remington section)

 

WINCHESTERS (click text for photo)

  1. SELDOM SEEN AND DIFFICULT ACQUIRE 1873 SADDLE RING CARBINE IN VERY LIMITED PRODUCTION .32WCF (.32-20) CALIBER! This rare saddle ring carbine is serial number 601xxx and according to the call-in sheet I got from the Cody Museum, was shipped March 5, 1907. Most of these late 1873s were exported and when found are in horrible condition. This one has seen use, but is very decent. Easily identifiable by the front magazine retaining band instead of the normal barrel band found on .38-40 and .44-40 carbines. The receiver shows even aged blue that is also evenly mixed with a most attractive plum (but certainly NOT brown or gray). Fine blue on the loading gate, mellow, uncleaned brass lifter with "32 CAL" markings, original dust cover, surprisingly excellent screws, barrel and magazine blue similar to the receiver with a tinge more brown to the plum and some light freckling on the barrel. Original carbine rear sight needs the slide and screw only, front sight boss is correct with a high blade pinned in. The end tip of the mag tube on the right side looks like it was dinged and pushed some side metal back about ¼ of an inch. Fine barrel and tang markings. Bore is a bit dark with light pitting, but good rifling all the way through. Lever spring only is a little weak. Walnut stock and forearm show normal handling, but no abuse. There is a stress crack coming back from for a couple inches on each side of the rear of the upper tang that go nowhere. Tight wood to metal fit and correct butt plate without the trap for cleaning rods- only the .32 WCF carbines lack this. One can search for a ’73 Saddle Ring Carbine in .32-20 for yeas and not see one! $3250.

  2. EARLY AND HARD TO FIND 1873 .44-40, 2ND MODEL OCTAGON RIFLE, #39XXX, MADE 1879. This is a true frontier used Winchester that came out of Arizona. It shows honest saddle wear on the forearm in two places- right in front of the receiver for a few inches and just behind the forend cap also for a few inches. By the angle of the wear of both (not quite centered on the bottom) one can tell that a right handed person holding the rifle at the wrist caused the saddle wear from a whole lot of miles! There is some very aged blue on the front and rear sections of the side that is mixing heavily plum and brown with good blue on the loading gate. The barrel and magazine also show the same very aged blue mixing plum/brown. Good markings and fine action. Fine butt stock with good wood to metal fit and no major dings or cracks. Forend is the same aside from the saddle wear. Original dust cover intact with mellow brass lifter. Original flat top buckhorn rear sight with short blade front sight. Surprisingly fine bore is only a little dark with good rifling all the way through and any roughness is very light and surface. This is a fine early Indian Wars Era 1873 with an attractive appearance and lots of character. $2450.

  3. ALMOST NEVER SEEN 1876 FIRST MODEL OPEN-TOP RECEIVER ROUND BARREL RIFLE WITH SPECIAL ORDER SET TRIGGER, #7XX. This one came out of right here in Montana. Only the first batch of 1876 rifles were made with the open top, like on a Model 1866, without a dust cover.  Soon after, dust covers became standard on this model and many of the open tops were returned to the factory and fitted for a dust cover. Obviously, this example is unaltered from its original open-top configuration. A Cody Museum call-in sheet comes with this one verifying that this rifle left the factory with a round barrel and set trigger. It was received in the warehouse November 8, 1877 and shipped November 15, 1877. All early 1876 rifles were chambered for the .45-75 cartridge and this one has a near exc. bore that has strong rifling all the way through and is only a little dark. It has a buckhorn rear sight with Rocky Mountain blade front sight. Correct 28” barrel, set trigger works fine and has the adjustment screw intact. Overall the metal is uncleaned and retains an attractive gray-brown patina with some aged blue in the protected areas and on the loading gate. The mellow brass lifter has never been cleaned or polished and is dent free. Screw heads are in fine condition and the stock and forend have never been sanded or cleaned and show only normal light handling with fine wood to metal fit. Tight action with good springs and the hammer holds firmly at half cock. Lever catch is intact. This is really a fine, 3-digit serial number, unmolested example of one of the most difficult to obtain of all the Winchester lever action rifles. Most of the finest Winchester collections lack a 1876 Open-Top rifle.  (4 photos) $6850.

  4. EXCEEDINGLY RARE 1876 .45-60 CALIBER OCTAGON RIFLE TWO INCH SHORTER THAN STANDARD 26” BARREL, SHIPPED IN 1882.  According to the Winchester Handbook by George Madis, only 79 Model 1876 rifles were made with barrels shorter than standard.  I’ve seen two that had 24” barrels, but never a 26”. I believe that this is because anyone willing to spend the extra money to special order a shorter than standard 28” barrel would want a rifle with a barrel seriously shorter than just two inches shorter. This rifle is guaranteed to letter as it comes with a call-in sheet from the Cody Museum verifying the 26” length and caliber. The barrel shows a mixture of aged blue mixing brown. Mag tube is similar with some nice plum patina. The receiver  is mostly a brown aged patina with blue on the loading gate and a little aged blue in the most protected areas, dust cover is intact and brass lifter is uncleaned and un polished. Fine butt stock and forearm with good wood to metal fit showing only light, normal handling. Buckhorn rear sight with small blade front sight. Bore is surprisingly bright with sharp rifling all the way through and any roughness is very light and scattered and should pretty much all brush out. This is an extremely rare 1876 with an honest appearance and good markings throughout. There can’t be many in this caliber, barrel shape and short 26” length! $4250.

  5. FULL DELUXE 1886 EXTRA LIGHTWEIGHT, SOLID FRAME RIFLE IN CALIBER .33 WCF, #141XXX, MADE 1906. This is a beautiful rifle with fabulous grained reddish-brown walnut checkered pistol grip stock and checkered forend with equally fancy grained walnut. Pistol grip has the correct hard rubber Winchester embossed grip cap, correct hard rubber shotgun butt plate is also Winchester marked and in excellent condition. Heavy “piano finish” on the wood, checkering is still fairly sharp with a little more wear to the bottom of the forend- but all distinct. Retains nearly all the  blue on the correct 24” barrel with only some light thinning from age. Receiver shows good blue on the side panels with thinning/mixing gray toward the middle section and on the bottom, exc. deep blue on the bolt, screw heads look unturned. Flat top buckhorn rear sight with Lyman “Jack” front sight- half moon with ivory bead in correct short ramp.  Excellent tight wood to metal fit, tight action, exc. bright bore, deep blue on the correct half magazine. The .33 WCF was the only smokeless powder round introduced for the Model 1886 in 1902. It is simply the .45-70 case necked down to accept .338” bullets. It was considered the most powerful tubular fed lever action round until the .348 WCF was introduced for the Model 71 in the 1930s. A deluxe special order rifle that was used, but taken care of. Seldom seen with wood this fancy. Were I a well heeled rifleman in 1906...this is exactly the rifle I'd order from Winchester! $4650.

  6. MODEL 1890 IN THE MOST DESIRABLE AND DIFFICULT CALIBER TO OBTAIN .22 LONG RIFLE. This is an extremely early rifle as the .22 LR was first offered in 1919. This rifle with serial number 672XXX was made in 1920 and is one of the earliest .22 LR chambered rifles I’ve seen. The barrel shows nearly all the original blue with only the most minor of dulling or edge wear. The mag tube shows fine blue  with the bottom rear portion around the loading port mixing plum. The receiver shows about all the bright blue on the bolt and upper tang- upper tang appears to have had a tang sight installed at one time as there is still an uncleaned hardened grease line from its edge. The side panels of the receiver show fine blue with heavy edge and some bottom wear mixing gray/brown from handling. Front sight is a Lyman Beach folding globe combined with a two leaf folding express rear sight. Screws are excellent, forend is excellent and butt stock is generally excellent with some light handling marks just behind the wrist on the right side- minor. The wood shows most of the original finish and the wood to metal fit is tight. This is an original .22 LR chambered rifle and does NOT have any additional “mail order” barrel proofs etc. as many .22 LR M-90s have. Bore is sharp and excellent. These have gotten almost impossible to find and this is a fine one. $1495.

  7. VERY HIGH CONDITION MODEL 1890, .22 WRF, #471XXX, MADE 1912.  Manufactured the year the Titanic sank, this fine rifle retains beautiful rich factory blue on the entire receiver and upper tang with only the most minor brown spotting on the very forward part of the bolt and on the lower tang/trigger guard. Similarly, the barrel retains nearly all of the deep blue. The mag tube retains fine blue on the top half with the bottom half typically mixing plum. Excellent forend and butt stock with minimal handling marks and very tight wood to metal fit. Bore is excellent and sights are original with the rear having the usual 1901 patent date etc. One of the better ones I’ve seen in a while and nice to know CCI is once again producing .22 WRF ammo. Great 107 year old Winchester! $1595.

  8. 1892 .44-40 ROUND BARREL RIFLE, #693XXX, MADE 1912.  Receiver is mainly an uncleaned brown with excellent screw heads that don’t look turned. The mag tube shows fine lightly aged blue overall and the barrel retains more heavily aged blue evenly mixing plum. The rear buckhorn sight has the right “wing” broken off and shouldn’t be too hard to replace, correct short blade front sight. Exc. markings and fine reddish color walnut with good wood to metal fit. Bore is fairly bright and excellent with only some very small spots of surface/light  pitting toward the middle of the bore- minor. Very tight action and nice appearance. Getting hard to find any 1892s in .44-40. $1995.

  9. 1892 SADDLE RING CARBINE IN .25-20 CALIBER, #839XXX, MADE 1917. This one turned up right here in Montana and no doubt has good history in it. Fine wood with tight wood to metal fit and showing only normal handling/use. Receiver is an uncleaned gray/brown with some blue on the loading gate and excellent screws. The barrel and mag tube are a mixture of aged blue with plum/brown mixing in. Excellent markings, ring intact, original carbine rear sight with ladder and slide intact. Fine bore with good rifling throughout that needs a good clean. When I got this one I could barely see through the bore…a few patches and things seemed to clean up nicely. It would benefit from a good scrubbing out. Tight action and strong springs. Nice, attractive appearance. $1595.

  10. HIGH CONDITION 1892 32-20 ROUND BARREL RIFLE, MADE 1903, a really beautiful example that shows excellent deep barrel and mag blue with only the most minor of wear on the bottom of the mag tube and very slight ageing of the blue, receiver shows excellent deep blue with minor edge wear and a little plum mixing on the bottom and upper tang, but shows most of the bright blue with the lightest of wear only, exc. stock and forend with very minor handling marks only, tight wood to metal fit, still retains some good dark case color on the upper portions of the lever and on hammer, bore appears a little worn and may have some leading in it that should scrub out to fine or better, original buckhorn rear sight with standard Winchester blade front sight, exc. markings, unfooled with overall and super attractive. $2250.

  11. CLASSIC 1894 OCTAGON RIFLE IN .30 WCF, #314XXX, MADE 1906.  This is a nice condition example that retains about all the deep barrel and magazine blue with only minor edge wear, excellent markings and original Winchester buckhorn rear sight with Winchester blade front sight. The receiver shows good aged blue on the rear half of the side panels and in protected areas with some very light surface peppering on the left side of the forward part of the receiver from some light rust that was wiped off- very minor and hardly worth mentioning. Fine stock and forearm with only light handling marks and tight wood to metal fit- the left top side of the forearm just ahead of the receiver shows a very slight and shallow inch-long sliver out that is old and worn in- you have to look close to notice it. Bore is excellent and only a little dark in color. Lots of life still left in this one! Nice appearance. $1295.

  12. 1894 SADDLE RING CARBINE IN SCARCE .25-35, #971XXX, MADE 1925. This is a well used, but cared for ’94.  Has all the correct late barrel markings. Barrel shows good aged blue with the mag. tube showing the aged blue mixing plum, mostly gray/brown uncleaned receiver with exc. screws and fine blue on the loading gate. Generally about excellent walnut stock and forend showing a few handling marks on the comb of the stock and light handling on the forend. There is some dark, almost black staining on the right side of the butt stock- probably from powder solvent running out of the receiver during cleaning- should be fairly easy to remove. Correct carbine rear sight with slide intact. Tight wood to metal fit, tight action, and exc. sharp bore! Came out of Arizona. Hard to find caliber. $1450.

  13. EXTREMELY HARD CALIBER TO FIND IN THE MODEL 1894 IS THIS .32-40 FULL OCTAGON, FULL MAGAZINE RIFLE #229XXX, MADE 1904. Amazingly, this early rifle has a bright, sharp excellent bore! It also retains fine receiver blue with only some of the blue mixing with brown age spotting. Excellent deep blue on the bolt. Fine deep blue on the barrel and magazine with only few very small spots of light wear to the barrel. Traces of case color remain on the more protected areas of the lever and on the hammer back, receiver screws appear unturned and retain good blue. Original buckhorn rear sight with Lyman blade/ivory bead front sight, excellent stock and forend with tight wood to metal fit Even the forend cap retains some nice blue. Tight action. These octagon barrel .32-40 1894s are really hard to locate, especially with exc. bores. $2295.

  14. SCARCE CONFIGURATION 1894 .30WCF RIFLE WITH HALF OCTAGON BARREL AND FULL MAGAZINE, SHOTGUN BUTT, #228XXX, MADE 1904. This is an especially fine condition rifle that retains nearly all the deep blue on the barrel and mag. tube. Receiver shows good blue on both sides with normal thinning and edge wear, exc. blue on the bolt, exc. screws and even shows good blue on the forend cap. Exc. butt stock and forend with very tight wood to metal fit, checkered steel shotgun butt plate, flat top buckhorn rear sight with Winchester blade front sight. Bore is slightly dark, but excellent, tight action. This is an early 1894 with a very attractive appearance that has very scarce and desirable features. $2450.

  15. SPECIAL ORDER 1894 .38-55 CALIBER ROUND BARREL RIFLE WITH HALF MAGAZINE (BUTTON MAG), #562XXX, MADE 1911. It is a little known fact that lever action rifles with half magazines tend to be more accurate than full magazine rifles- makes sense as each time a cartridge is pulled from the magazine and lifted into the chamber it changes the weight/balance of the magazine hanging from the bottom of the barrel. That’s why some of the more savvy shooters of the day ordered their big game rifles with half magazines- check out most photos of Theodore Roosevelt holding rifles and they all seem to have half magazines. This one shows fine deeply aged blue on the right side of the receiver with a bit less on the left side where it has flaked a bit. The barrel also shows fine deeply aged blue that has some plum/brown mixing. The wood is fine overall with maybe a couple of age cracks coming forward from the receiver on each side of the forearm that go nowhere and are very tight. Fine bore shows light wear and maybe a bit frost, but a good scrubbing ought help. Lyman tang sight with a small Lyman blade/bead front sight and King patented dovetail filler where the rear sight was removed. Exc. screws, tight action, nice appearance. $1495.

  16. LATE, TRANSITION 1894 CARBINE, #1059XXX, .32WS CALIBER, MADE 1929. This is another Winchester that came out of right here in Montana and was probably a ranch gun. Interesting variation made just after the saddle ring was dropped as a standard feature, yet the classic curved steel carbine butt plate was retained. This one has fine deep barrel and mag blue with light wear and exc.  late markings. Has a D. W. King patent ‘07  buckhorn rear sight and a Sheard No.6 blade/bead carbine front sight. The receiver still retains some fine1920s blue/black finish that was known to flake easily and rapidly- this receiver is in the stage where the flaking has turned plum/brown before it silvers with brighter and deeper blue in the more protected areas and exc. blue on the loading gate. Exc. walnut stock and forend with only light handling and very tight wood to metal fit, tight action, exc. screws, and bright excellent bore! Nice appearance overall. $1195.

  17. HIGH CONDITION MODEL 1895 RIFLE IN SCARCE .30-03 CALIBER, #93XXX, MADE 1915. It is unclear why Winchester would still chamber rifles for this caliber when the .30-06 had replaced the .30-03 nearly ten years before. It is my opinion that some rifles were chambered for the earlier caliber because the only difference between the .30-06 and the .30-03 is in the case neck- the .30-03 is slightly longer than the ’06.  Standard .30-06 ammo can be fired in rifles chambered for .30-03, but not conversely. Perhaps there were still piles of surplus .30-03 ammo available to the public… Anyway, I’m sure most of these ’03 chambered Model 1895s were fired with normal and readily available .30-06 ammo.  It does make for a rare chambering as according to the Winchester Handbook by George Madis, (discussing chambering dates) “In 1904 the .405 was added, followed by the .30-03 in 1905. When the .30-06 was added in 1908, the .30-03 was available on special order only.”  Being special ordered in this chambering seven years after it was dropped is certainly unusual and an oddity! This is a very fine example with nearly all the deep blue remaining on the barrel with flattop buckhorn rear sight and Lyman blade/bead front sight in correct factory dovetailed ramp. Barrel is correctly stamped with the usual nickel steel markings plus “30 GOV’T 03.”  Excellent markings on the receiver and excellent deep and high polished factory blue on the receiver sides and bolt with only light edge wear and some handling wear on the bottom extreme forward part of the receiver and box magazine. Exc. wood with tight wood to metal fit. Tight action and minty bright bore. A very unusual 1895 in great condition. $2250.

  18. DELUXE PISTOL GRIPPED, CHECKERED MODEL 1903 .22 AUTO RIFLE, MADE 1915, fairly plain but uncracked walnut stock and forend, this was someone's well used and taken care of "pride and joy" rifle as the checkering is all there, but fairly worn, the blue on the receiver is pretty well worn off to an uncleaned gray with good blue in the most protected of areas, has the correct pistol grip cap, interestingly, this one was returned to the factory for a new barrel as the barrel has both the oval P "Mail Order" proof as well as the Winchester proof- this means, the rifle was sent back to Winchester who took a "Mail Order" replacement barrel out of stock and fitted it to the returned rifle, has all the correct Winchester and Model 1903 markings on the barrel, fine deep barrel blue, retains some thinning blue on the forend cap, exc. mech., exc. bright bore, buckhorn with blade/bead front sights, I believe I still sells .22 Auto ammo (different from .22 LR), pistol gripped/checkered Model 1903s are quite rare, $895.

  19. MODEL 55 TAKEDOWN, .30WCF CALIBER, #8XXX, MADE THE YEAR CHARLES LINDBURGH BECAME THE FIRST MAN TO FLY ACROSS THE ATLANTIC IN 1927! This example has seen use, but no abuse. The barrel shows very thin blue that is mixing evenly gray, typical of 1920s receivers, this one has had the blue turning dark and mixing brown and gray with good blue in the more protected areas and loading gate. Standard buckhorn and short ramp front sight, tight takedown, fine wood with tight wood to metal fit, tight action, has a sling swivel stud in the butt stock and a corresponding swivel in the forend cap, correct steel butt plate, exc. bore, these are quite scarce as the model was introduced in 1924 and fell victim of the Great Depression of the 1930s. $1195.

  20. MODEL 65 IN DESIRABLE .218 BEE THAT RETAINS NEARLY ALL THE BLUE, #1004XXX, MADE JUST BEFORE WORLD WAR II WHEN PRODUCTION CEASED.  Okay, that’s the good news…the bad news is that it looks like this rifle went through several different scopes and mounts. This is a real heart-breaker if ever there was one! The top of the barrel ahead of the rear sight now has five small holes with filler screws, the left side of the barrel ahead of the receiver has four holes (two and two) where a side mount was fitted… and if that’s not bad enough, the left side of the receiver has four small holes from another side mount! All the holes are very small and have filler screws in them now. A talented person would have no problem welding up the holes, but it is what it is. Bore is bright and perfect, stock has the original steel butt plate and is generally excellent, fitted with sling swivels that look original, hammer spring only seems a little weak as is the half cock notch. Bolt was cut for a bolt peep sight that is not with this rifle now. If you ever wanted a .218 Bee shooter, this one would be a great one to have. With the right bases (lots of options there) it would be easy to scope!!! (4 photos) $1395.

  21. MODEL 100 SEMI-AUTO RIFLE IN RARE .284 WIN. CALIBER, MADE 1967. This one came out of here in Montana and no doubt has accounted for lots of game! Excellent wood showing very light handling with almost no marks. Exc. blue on the barrel with original folding Lyman rear sight and hooded front sight. It must have had a scope mounted at one time as the factory drilled scope mount holes are lacking the filler screws and there is a light outline were a scope base was once mounted. Correct .284 marked magazine shows some blue wear. The bottom of the aluminum trigger guard has a slight ding and wear to the anodized blue/black finish. Overall a nice rifle in a great caliber (I’m a fan of the .284 and have used it quite a bit here in Montana for deer and antelope). $875.

     

 

    BILL GOODMAN,  P. O. BOX 2002,  BOZEMAN,  MONTANA  59771           TEL.  (406) 587-3131          FAX  (406) 219-3415           montanaraven@hotmail.com

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

THESE  WERE SUCH  GOOD NOTES FROM THE FIELD I'M KEEPING THEM HERE.

 

 CRACKED STOCKS! Seems like an odd thing to write about, but this is something I've not seen in print before. I've observed a lot of rifles with cracks coming straight back toward the butt plate from the upper and lower tangs. Sometimes the cracks are severe enough to warrant repairs (like cross bolts etc. through the wrist or extensive gluing) and other times the stock remains pretty solid as is.  So what caused this condition in the first place?  I've hunted with all kinds of rifles in all kinds of weather and terrain and never had a gun get damaged like all these I've seen.  And I've taken some pretty bad falls too. Once, on ice I couldn't see beneath a couple inches of fresh snow, my feet went out from under me and my rifle landed a number of yards away!  Still, no cracks like these. So I've been puzzled by this for some time.  Then it hit me, since these guns all seemed like Western big game rifles- large lever actions like 1876 and 1886 Winchesters or Marlin 1881 and 1895s as well as all over while the rifles were in saddle scabbards- fairly common in icy winter conditions, especially in the mountains. Also, sometimes horses will walk so close to trees that they rub against them.  If a rifle is in a butt-forward position scabbard, the rifle can go on one side of the tree and the horse the other causing a stress cracked stock.  Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't think so.  The wrists are fairly strong on most rifles and it takes a lot to crack one.  If anyone else has a different theory about this condition, I'd like to hear it!

 "GUNS OF THE GREAT DEPRESSION YEARS" When the Great Depression began with the Stock Market Crash of 1929 America was taken by surprise.  Prior to this pivotal event, in the gun industry production was high and sales were brisk.  Almost overnight sales fell off hugely.  The Winchester Handbook by George Madis shows production numbers by years of some of the major models.  This is pretty illuminating.  Here are some examples: Model 1890 .22RF had 12,367 produced in 1928 and 696 made in 1932; Model 1892 saw 64,833 produced in 1910 and 491 in 1930; Model 53 had 2,861 produced in 1925 and 30 made in 1937; Model 1894 had 29,967 made in 1927 and only1,192 made in 1934; Model 55 had 3,064 made in 1927 and 42 made in 1936. Colt, Marlin, Savage, Remington and Smith & Wesson etc. all f elt the same pressure.  With production down to a fraction of what it was, the big manufacturers had no choice but to fire employees.  Those lucky enough to be retained were the most highly skilled and experienced craftsmen.  They also had time to put extra fine fitting and finishing into each firearm.  Generally, the quality of these guns is truly exceptionally.  With production numbers of these late pre-war arms relatively small and quality without peer, their value should be assured.  Some of the scarce large frame Colt and S&W handguns- especially the target sighted versions- are almost breathtaking in their fit an  d finish.  This has been an under-appreciated niche in arms collecting/investing. It is my belief Great Depression era  arms are often "sleepers" on the antique market today and are bound to increase in value at a rapid pace making them excellent long term investments.

I have found a new shooting activity that I'm sure a number of folks who check out my website will either want to try themselves or will at least find interesting reading.  I've discovered the fun of BLACK POWDER SHOTSHELLS. And no, I'm not new to black powder.  I've been shooting muzzle loaders since I was a kid (I was too young to buy ammo, but a can of black powder and a single shot muzzle loading pistol kept me shooting!) I've shot black powder cartridge rifles and some handguns since the 1970s.  I've also tried a few muzzle loading shotguns, but a while back I noticed Midway was offering reloadable brass shotshells made by Magtech in Brazil.  They cost about a buck a piece and come in a box of 25.  So I thought this looked interesting and bought a box.  They prime with a large pistol primer (I use CCI  Large Pistol Mag. Primers) and require no special tools to load.  I did buy a "cowboy 12 ga. shell holder" by RCBS which makes priming easier, but one can prime using a dowel, hammer and a flat surface to seat the primer. Anyway, I loaded with various loads of black powder as well as Alliant Black MZ black powder substitute. 27.3 grains equals one dram, so a typical field load of 3 1/2 drams equals about 95 grains of black powder or substitute.  I load that through a drop tube to better settle the powder, using a wood dowel I seat an over powder card wad, then a cushion wad, pour in 1 1/8 oz. of shot from an antique shot dipper I picked up somewhere along the line, top with another over powder wad and then put about three small drops of Elmer's glue on this top wad at the edge. Last, using a Q-tip sweep it around the wad edge. It dries making a nice seal with the inside of the brass case and holds everything together. Firing removes any glue residue from the case.  I picked up a particularly nice Remington 1889 double barrel with exposed hammers (damascus with exc. bores) and tried out my loads on some thrown clays.  I'm not a good shot with a scattergun, but when I felt I was on, the clay targets broke as nicely as if I'd been using a modern smokeless shotgun. I used this double on a pheasant hunt last fall and did just fine with it.  Truthfully, it made the hunt so much more fun I don't know if I'd go again with one of my modern guns! Today I tried the same shells in a Winchester 1887 Lever Action 12 ga. that was made in 1888. It fed beautifully and was a blast to shoot (no pun intended). The brass cases de-prime with a simple Lee type punch and clean up with hot soapy water. No resizing is required for the next loading.  Pretty simple.  The 12 ga. cases are 2 1/2" long, which is exactly what a modern 2 3/4" case measures LOADED AND UNFIRED. Remember, many of the older guns, like the Winchester 1887, have 2 5/8" chambers. You don't want to shoot a 2 3/4" shell in them as they won't be able to open up all the way causing pressures to jump etc. I don't think Magtech offers brass cases in 10 ga. but they do in the smaller gauges.  There are a lot of older shotguns out there that can often be purchased inexpensively and make wonderful shooters.  Be sure to have any gun checked out by a gunsmith if you have doubts about it. With these brass cases and ease of loading, it's worth trying.  Buffalo Arms in Idaho sells the correct size wads for these brass cases- they actually take 11 ga. wads. If you give this a try, I think you'll be glad you did-   Bill Goodman