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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. 

 

 

  PLEASE NOTE: THE OFFICE WILL BE CLOSED UNTIL SEPTEMBER 28. FEEL FREE TO EMAIL ME IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN AN ITEM. PLEASE DO NOT CALL OR LEAVE ANY MESSAGES DURING THIS TIME. THANKS.  BILL GOODMAN.

 

 

MORE GUNS WERE POSTED ON 9/16/19. WATCH FOR FREQUENT POSTINGS THROUGH  SEPTEMBER.

 

 

 

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) BISLEY IN .32-20 WITH 4 ¾” BARREL, #298XXX, MADE 1907. This is a really classic example of a frontier revolver that was used and carried, but not abused or neglected. There is still some small amounts of aged blue in the most protected areas like the cylinder flutes and ejector housing flutes etc. but mainly it is an aged gray/brown that shows no signs of cleaning or steel-wooling. The screws are excellent and the markings are all fine including the “BISLEY MODEL” and two line barrel address. The cylinder pin appears to be an old replacement as is the ejector head. Front sight has not been filed or altered. Bore will brush out excellent, grips show considerable honest wear but are solid. There is actually holster wear at the muzzle on the left side- it takes a lot of holster carry to cause this!  Fine action and good lock-up with only the first “click” of the hammer weak. Matching numbers. Lots of character in this Old West Bisley! (4 photos) $1795.

3) ONE OF THE RAREST COLTS I’VE OFFERED IS THIS 1878 DOUBLE ACTION IN .476 CALIBER, WITH 5 ½” BARREL, NICKEL FINISH, PALL MALL, LONDON BARREL ADDRESS, #16XXX, MADE 1886! According to the excellent book COLT’S DOUBLE ACTION REVOLVER MODEL OF 1878 by Wilkerson, only 344 revolvers like this were made. (I highly recommend this book as it has a wealth of info on all calibers, barrel lengths, finishes, English models etc.). I assume all were shipped to England with very few either returning to the U.S. or surviving at all. According to Wilkerson, many or most of these were shipped to England first and then further shipped to India, Australia and New Zealand. There can’t be more than a hand full of these in existence. This one retains most of the nickel on the barrel, ejector and frame with only normal small areas of peeling- mainly on some edges and on the front strap. The nickel on the cylinder seems to have peeled more heavily and now only has scattered nickel. The barrel has British proofs on the bottom just ahead of the cylinder pin (which is in excellent condition) and behind each cylinder flute. Action is very tight and functions perfectly, bore is excellent and bright with no pitting, “476 CAL” is clearly stamped on the left front of the trigger guard bow, lanyard swivel is intact and the front sight has not been altered. This is about as rare a Colt as one could hope to obtain. (4 photos) $3650.

4) 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. $1795. (click on the underlined sections for photos)

5) If I HAD THE CATEGORY “WHACKY GUNS,” THIS COLT WOULD BE THE FIRST ONE ON THE LIST! Here we have a New Army/New Navy Model on which someone put a 10” barrel with milled-in boss for a dovetailed front blade sight. Now, hang on to your hat, because the best is yet to come! The cylinder has had each chamber sleeved to accept a .25-20 WCF cartridge! Obviously, the barrel is .25 caliber with a thick forcing cone. Looks like the extreme back of the top strap has been slotted for a sight blade that is now missing, but would be easy to replace. Judging by the consistent blue wear on the barrel, frame and cylinder, I’d say this was done a very long time ago and that the gun has seen serious use. The serial number is 130XXX which puts the manufacture date at 1899. Still retains good blue on the frame, cylinder and barrel that is aged and mixing brown. Grips are correct and each as a chip at the rear bottom edge. Bore is excellent and action functions, but could use a good tightening up. In no way am I selling this as a shooter, but if you want to try it out, please get it checked by a competent gunsmith who can tighten up the cylinder lock-up etc. And be sure to KEEP YOUR LOADS LIGHT! The workmanship is actually quite good. This kind of work would cost a fortune to do today. If you’ve been dreaming of a 10” double action “Buntline Special” in .25-20 (and who hasn’t), here it is! (4 photos) $695.

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) GREAT DEPRESSION ERA TARGET POLICE POSITIVE .22LR, #39XXX, MADE 1931. This is a really fine example of the desirable “heavy frame” Police Positive Target .22 revolver. Made right at the beginning of the Great Depression when sales were way down and only the best craftsmen were kept on at Colt. This superb revolver fit the needs of outdoorsmen and shooters who didn’t want a heavy revolver to lug around, yet offered great weight and balance for a small frame Colt. These just feel good in the hand! A truly class act with checkered back strap and trigger along with recessed chambers that enclosed the entire .22 rim fire head. Adjustable sights and checkered walnut grips with Colt medallions. This example retains about all the beautiful Colt blue with only very minor edge wear on the cylinder and slight thinning on the bottom of the trigger guard. About the only place where blue is dulling/missing is in the extreme bottom inch of the front strap. All markings are sharp and clear and even the front face of the cylinder shows most of the blue- indicating this one was shot very little. Exc. fire blue on the hammer back and trigger sides. Grips are fine with only some bottom edge wear mainly on the right side. Overall a superior, hand fitted Colt from the Golden Years. This kind of workmanship finish would be too costly to ever do again, which is a terrible shame! But, not to worry…just find an vintage one like this to enjoy! $895.

8) A REALLY BEAUTIFUL LITTLE 1908 RARE NICKEL FINISH .25 ACP VEST POCKET AUTO, #295XXX, MADE 1921. This sharp diminutive auto retains about all the nickel finish with only a tiny bit of peel at the extreme front left edge at the muzzle. All markings are sharp and clear including the rampant colt on the left rear of the slide. Two-tone magazine is marked on the bottom “CAL. 25 COLT.” Excellent, tight action with both the lever safety and grip safety functioning perfectly. Exc. Colt hard rubber grips. A classy little special order nickel finished pocket auto from the Roaring Twenties Era in great condition! $895.

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, $1495.

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) VERY HARD TO FIND MODEL 336CB, .38-55 CALIBER WITH 24" OCTAGON BARREL. This very limited production rifle was made in 1999 and appears basically new inside and out. It has very sharp checkered wrist and forearm with Marlin's traditional diamond pattern with nicely figured walnut. I almost never see these and this is about as nice as one could hope to find. No box. $1195.

2) MODEL 1894CL “CLASSIC” IN .25-20 WITH GORGEOUS WALNUT STOCK! These are really great little rifles that were made in .218 Bee, .25-20 and .32-20. It seems the .32-20 is by far the most with the .25-20 scarce and the .218 Bee very hard to find. These fine rifles have 22” barrels with half magazines. This example was fitted with a tang sight as well has having the folding Lyman rear sight with wide blade front sight. The butt stock on this one is fancier than I’ve ever seen on one of these- as the photos show. Overall excellent condition with only a few hardly noticeable handling marks. I have one of these in .25-20 and another in .32-20 and they are favorites! $975.

3) SCARCE MODEL 375, CHAMBERED FOR THE FINE, STRAIGHT WALLED .375 WCF CARTRIDGE AND ONLY MADE IN LIMITED QUANTITIES FROM 1980-1983. This one was made in 1980. These have become very much in demand now that a number of states are allowing hunting with “straight-walled” cartridges (like the new .350 Legend and the old .45-70 and .444 Marlin) where they used to allow only shotgun and muzzle loader. The .375 WCF is a great medium range caliber. This example has fancier than standard walnut and comes with a Williams receiver peep sight. It has a 20” barrel and 2/3 magazine, factory sling swivel studs and comes factory drilled and tapped for scope mounting. Aside from the little Marlin “bullseye” inlay that seems to have fallen out (these are available from Brownells, Midway or Marlin) and a few of the most minor of handling marks in the wood that you have to look carefully to notice, it is in near new condition. Starline is making .375 WCF brass now. $895.

 

 

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

1) WESTERN SHIPPED SHARPS 1878 BORCHARDT  .45-70 MILITARY RIFLE, #19XXX, MARKED ON THE RECEIVER RING “J. P. LOWER  DENVER COL.” J.P. Lower was one of the main Western dealers for Sharps and many of the rifles he sold after this date went North to Montana for the remainder of the buffalo hunt which lasted until about 1883. This example has seen some use, but it retains an excellent bore with tight action and functioning safety that automatically engages when the lever is raised. The butt stock retains the correct checkered steel butt plate and aside from a chip on the left side of the wrist at the upper receiver juncture and a slight crack in the same area on the right side (very common on this model), the stock is solid. Forearm shows normal handling marks and has a slight crack coming back from the forend cap on the left side- again minor and to be expected. Barrel bands with sling swivels intact, correct ladder military style rear sight, fine Sharps markings on the receiver and barrel along with the famous “OLD RELIABLE” stamping on the barrel. There is a small cartouche in the middle rear of the left side of the butt stock consisting of a dime size circle with the script letters "LB," meaning unknown.  Needs the cleaning rod only. Fine aged barrel blue and dark naturally aged patina receiver with some good aged blue mixing. Lots of Western Frontier history in this one! $1895.

2) STEVENS RELIABLE POCKET RIFLE No. 42 SECOND ISSUE IN .22 LONG RIFLE CALIBER WITH 10” BARREL AND MATCHING SHOULDER STOCK. This is an extremely fine condition example with about all the blue remaining on the barrel that shows only light age and a little plum mixing. The receiver retains about all the original nickel as does the matching number shoulder stock. The serial number 72XXX matches on the barrel, receiver slot in the butt and on the stock. Exc. walnut grips and fine+ bore is bright with good rifling and only a few small blemishes. Remarkably, it still retains the original aperture rear sight (instead of a buckhorn) paired with the original globe with pinhead front sight! Exc. screws and markings. Super example. $1295.

3) ONE OF THE MOST SCARCE OF THE SAVAGE AUTO PISTOLS IS THIS MODEL 1915 GRIP-SAFETY HAMMERLESS .32 AUTO, ONLY MADE FROM 1915-1916. These were made in limited numbers as competition to Colt’s fine pocket hammerless auto pistols. The Savage pistol had the advantage of holding ten rounds in the magazine! I’ve seen very few of these over the years and those I have observed have been in well-carried condition. This is one of the best I’ve seen and it would be hard to improve upon. It retains nearly all the bright original blue with only the smallest amount of edge wear/scuffing that you’d have to look closely to notice. Correct magazine (the M-1915 had its own special magazine different from other Savage autos) and exc. hard rubber Savage embossed grips. Grip safety and manual safety function properly. Exc. bore and mechanics. Comes with a repro Savage box with correct red end label etc.- nice for display. A very difficult auto pistol to find in any condition. Superb World War I era fit and finishing. (3 photos ) $1195.

4) HARRINGTON AND RICHARDSON DOUBLE ACTION “TRAPPER” .22 LR, 7-SHOT REVOLVER WITH 6” OCTAGON BARREL, #144XXX, MADE 1924-1941. Most of these have survived to the present in hard used condition. This is one of the better ones I’ve seen in a long time as it retains really fine original blue with only a few spots of edge wear (like on the extreme bottom of the trigger guard and the extreme front of the top strap) where the blue is mixing a little brown. Original “saw-handle” checkered walnut grips show only light wear. Exc. bright bore! Unaltered front sight. A classic .22 Long Rifle revolver from a more simple time! $375.

 

MODERN AND CUSTOM CLASSIC FIREARMS (click text for photos)

1) FULL CUSTOM BUILT .22 LONG RIFLE SINGLE SHOT ON A BEAUTIFUL ORIGINAL CASE COLORED STEVENS MODEL 44 ACTION.  This rifle was very finely put together with nicely grained and checkered walnut butt stock and forend. The butt stock is fitted with a Schuetzen butt plate as well as fitted with a sling swivel stud. The wrist is sharply checkered. The forearm is approx. 2” wide across the bottom and is flat bottomed with well-executed extensive checkering. The forend is held with two screws- the front one combined with the forward sling swivel. The medium weight barrel has no provision for sights and is 27 ½” long and richly blued. It is fitted with scope blocks and also has a pair of two holes with fillers from a different scope mount. The action retains the original vivid Stevens case colors and bright blue on the hammer and breech block. It is extremely tight and fitted with a crisp shell ejector. Bright excellent bore. Weighs approx. 8 ¾ lbs with sling. This is a really handsome outfit that would cost a bundle to custom make from scratch! $950.

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

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

4) WINCHESTER 1894-1994 CENTENNIAL FANCY, HALF-OCTAGON .30WCF RIFLE (see below in Winchester section)

 

 

 REMINGTON (click text for photos)

1) 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.

2) HEPBURN 30” FULL OCTAGON SPORTING RIFLE IN .40-65 REM. CALIBER (.40-70 2 ½”), #7XXX.  As only 8,000-10,000 Hepburns were made, they are not commonly found. The .40-65 Rem. Caliber was popular as a target round as well as for a big game hunting round- this was a very popular caliber in the famed Sharps Model 1874 rifles. This example has matching numbers on the barrel, forend, lower tang and inside the butt plate. Interestingly, the stock on this rifle is of a higher grade of walnut than normally found on standard rifles and was probably a special order. Wood is generally excellent with original fine sharp checkering on the wrist/pistol grip. The forend is the late style with the schnable tip with ebony inlay. Wood to metal fit is tight. Action is a natural dark aged patina and the barrel with correct Remington markings (.40-65 stamped on bottom flat of the barrel ahead of the receiver and under the forearm) and factory crown is similarly a mottled gray/brown patina with some aged blue mixing. Buckhorn rear sight with Rocky Mountain blade front sight. Bore is a bit dark but better than one would expect with fine rifling all the way through and any roughness surface and light. A good scrubbing out would probably be worthwhile. Tight action. Many Hepburns were butchered in the 1950s to make varminters and original, unaltered examples are now scarce. Nice original Hepburn in a desirable caliber with all matching numbers. $2600.

3) VERY SELDOM SEEN MODEL 14R 18 ½” CARBINE, STRAIGHT GRIP PUMP RIFLE IN .32 REMINGTON CALIBER WITH THUMBNAIL SAFETY!  This model was introduced in 1912 and manufactured through 1934. The thumbnail safety was introduced in 1918 and the Model number was added to the barrel in 1920- since this one does NOT have the model number on the barrel it is probably safe to assume it was made between 1918 and 1920.Typical M-14s have 22 inch barrels and pistol grip stocks. The carbine version is quite rare. This one came out of here in Montana and no doubt has lots of history in it- probably used as a saddle gun! The receiver blue shows wear at the lower front area balance point with the balance on the sides and top being fine, but aged dull blue. The barrel also shows fine aged blue with wear just ahead of the receiver from handling. It retains the scarce and desirable original “wheel adjustable for elevation” rear buckhorn sight with a small blade/bead front sight in the correct integral ramp. Fine forend shows normal handling but is solid. Butt stock retains the original Remington marked steel butt plate and is in fine condition with only a couple of  the usual minor tiny age cracks coming back from the top of the receiver and lower tang that go nowhere and are typical for this model. Sharp markings, tight action, thumbnail safety pulls up and down correctly in the ejection port, exc. bore. One of the more difficult of the Pre-War Remington models to locate. $1150.

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. $895.

5) EXCELLENT MODEL 51 .380 CALIBER HAMMERLESS POCKET SEMI AUTO PISTOL, #47XXX, MADE 1918-1934. Even to this day, the Model 51 is considered one of the finest .380s ever manufactured. The design features a very thin frame and slide with rounded edges that made it easy to conceal and be snag free when carried in a pocket. This example shows about all the original blue with only the slightest, most minor of edge wear mainly at the muzzle. It still retains fire blue on the safety lever and has excellent original Remington/UMC embossed grips. Correct “380 CAL” marked magazine. Bright bore. About as nice as one could hope to find and more than rivals anything made today! Getting hard to find especially in  this conditiion.  $875.

 

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 SHARPS 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.

 

SMITH AND WESSON (click text for photos)

1) VERY EARLY AND SPECTACULAR CONDITION ANTIQUE FIRST MODEL .32 SAFETY HAMMERLESS REVOLVER WITH UNUSUAL BRITISH PROOFS, #8XXX, MADE C.1888-1890!  These First Models were only made from 1888-1900. I have one that has been in my family since my great grandfather bought it new in 1894. It is numbered in the 36XXX range (I lettered it) which leads me to believe this one in the 8XXX range was made in the first couple of years of production. It is very unusual to see British Proofs on early S&W revolvers. It seems Colt had a near monopoly on U.S. made handgun imports. This 3” example shows a tiny “crown V” proof in each cylinder flute. I don’t believe this revolver was ever used as it retains about all the original bright nickel finish with barely any surface scratches etc.. Thee trigger guard retains all the bright, deep factory blue finish as does the barrel latch/sight. Matching numbers, minty bore, just a gem of a 130 year old Smith!  This one should have a factory letter (4 photos) $895.

2) 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.

3) VERY RARE AND DESIRABLE .32-20 TARGET MODEL 1905 HAND EJECTOR, 4TH CHANGE, #132XXX, MADE LATE 1930s. Nearly all of the .32-20 Hand Ejector revolvers were made with standard fixed sights, making adjustable sighted target versions very hard to find. This is an excellent example that came out of here in Montana. It retains nearly all of the original blue with only a touch of muzzle wear and a tiny scuff here or there- even the cylinder barely has any drag line and the front face of the cylinder retains about all the blue indicating that this revolver was hardly, if at all, shot. All matching numbers including a light pencil number under the grips, which have sharp checkering. Nice case color on the hammer and trigger, exc. bright bore, tight action. This one is a gem. (note: bottom photo shows some light reflection on the blue) $1595.

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) SUPER RARE AND SUPERB CONDITION WITH ORIGINAL RED BOX IS THIS 5-SCREW “BABY CHIEF SPECIAL” #1XXX, MADE FIRST YEAR OF PRODUCTION IN 1950. This extremely scarce revolver is easily identified from later Chief Specials because it was made on a smaller frame size (similar to the “I” frame) than the later, popular “J” frame. It also has NO BARREL RIB, instead having the full round barrel with half-moon front sight. This is the best one of these I’ve seen as it is in near new condition with only a faint cylinder ring. All of the blue is intact, including the face of the cylinder. The diamond checkered grips have the matching number stamped on the inside and the cylinder and barrel numbers match also. The red box was used from 1946-1954 on small frame revolvers, like this one and it has an excellent, full end label marked “SMITH & WESSON” over “38 CHIEFS SPECIAL” over “Blued – 2 Inch.” The box is solid and shows some edge scuffing, and has some Scotch tape left on one side and bottom- this could probably be removed without pulling the red off by applying heat- either way it is minor. Inside the lid is the full instruction label in both English and Spanish. These iconic little guns are rarely seen and this one is truly investment quality. $2850.

6) 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) FINE INDIAN WARS 1879 TRAPDOOR .45-70 CARBINE, #132XXX, WITH LIGHT BUT LEGIBLE 1879 DATED STOCK CARTOUCHE. This is a really attractive example that hasn’t been messed with. The rear sight is marked “C” for carbine and the trap in the butt contains rods. There is also a light circle P proof behind the lower tang. Crisp “U.S. MODEL 1873” marked breech block along with the usual eagle and “U.S. SPRINGFIELD” marked lock plate. Bore is about excellent and any roughness or frost is very surface and ought to scrub out. Stock is dark and uncleaned and never been sanded, showing normal handling wear without any cracks etc. Fine dark aged barrel blue with dark mottled breech block.  Balance of metal an honest aged patina showing no cleaning or steel wooling. Tight action, ring and bar intact. A nice, unmolested Indian Wars carbine with an honest appearance. Getting hard to find like this. $1695.

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

  3. EARLY 1876 SECOND MODEL .45-60 CAL., 28" OCTAGON RIFLE, #14XXX, MADE 1881. Nice example that still retains good aged barrel blue with some normal age thinning and with excellent markings. The mag tube is an uncleaned blue/brown patina with good blue on the top protected area. This one has the desirable sporting ladder rear sight with slide intact mated with the original Winchester blade front sight. The receiver is a mottled gray/brown with some very aged blue in the most protected areas and on the loading gate. Original dust cover intact. Mellow brass lifter engraved with the caliber marking. Tight action, bore is a bit worn with light pitting but has good rifling and would benefit from a good brushing/scrubbing. Fine butt stock and forend showing only normal light handling and very tight wood to metal fit. Fine appearance. $3450.

  4. ONE OF THE MOST UNUSUAL AND RARE 1885 THICKSIDE HIGHWALL SINGLE SHOT RIFLES I’VE SEEN. This one is a very early thick side rifle #5XXX that according to the factory letter was shipped in 1886 as a caliber .45 2-3/8 (this has to be a mistake as there is no “.45 2-3/8” cartridge.  Probably meant .45 2-7/8) It further states it had a 30” #4 weight octagon barrel with plain trigger. Now, here’s the fascinating part: It was “Returned by Meacham, October 29, 1894, Received in warehouse on February 27, 1895” and listed as “Rifle, 30 Gov’t., Octagon barrel” (again, an obvious mistake as the .30 Gov’t. or .30-40 Krag caliber was never available in an octagon barrel, only chambered in nickel steel round barrels). “Plain trigger, 30 inches, #3 ship date and order number blank.”  Here are some interesting things to consider: The first smokeless caliber in the famed Model 1894 lever action rifle was the .30 WCF or .30-30 in late 1895 to early 1896- no doubt earlier than the year this rifle was changed to the new smokeless .30-40 Krag cartridge that was introduced in the U.S. Springfield Krag rifle in 1894, the same year this rifle was returned to Winchester. Whoever returned this rifle to be changed to the new military cartridge that was just out must have been a very savvy individual when it came to the latest guns and cartridges! Remember, this was before any kind of information getting out beyond newspapers and printed journals didn’t exist.. Word didn’t spread particularly fast in 1894! Winchester had this rifle from Oct. 29, 1894 until February 27, 1895 before shipping it back- that’s almost 4 months. Makes me wonder if they had to tool up for the new chambering. In the Model 1894, they didn’t have nickel steel barrels for the new smokeless .30 WCF round until late 1895 or early 1896 and this is why the first rifles made in 1894 were for the black powder .32-40 and .38-55 rounds. Winchester introduced the Model 1895 lever action box magazine rifle in 1895 with the standard caliber being .30-40 Krag.  But, the earliest Model 1895s carry a patent date of Nov. 5, 1895 which leads me to believe that rifles didn’t start coming out of the factory until after that date. This would be supported by the fact that only 287 rifles in all calibers (including the black powder .38-72 and .40-72) were made in 1895. Another interesting aspect of this Highwall rifle is that the caliber is simply stamped on the barrel top ahead of the receiver “30 N.S.” Since the only .30 caliber cartridges at this time (not including the .303 British) were the .30 WCF (possibly) and .30-40 Krag or Gov’t., I think the “N.S.” stood for Nickel Steel. So, in conclusion, it was shipped before the Model 1895 began production and certainly before the Model 1894 was chambered in .30 WCF (or .25-35 at the same time).  Could Winchester have chambered another Highwall single shot in .30-40 Krag before this one?  Yes, the first .30-40 Krag chambered in a Highwall was in April, 1894. I’m thinking it very probably may have been an ammo test rifle or a prototype smokeless rifle and not necessarily a standard sporter sold to the public as they had not even geared up to manufacture sporting ammo in this caliber yet. But I believe this first .30-40 was probably NOT a thick side action.  There were a little over 1,000 Highwalls made in .30-40 Krag and I believe all were on thin side actions. If you have read this far, here’s the description of this rifle: generally fine blue on the barrel with only a little dulling from age and a thin area down the left side of the barrel where some light rust had formed at one time and been wiped off with an oily rag- nothing unsightly. The bore is slightly dark, but excellent and free of any pitting with sharp rifling. The receiver is a mottled gray with some small traces of case color in the most protected areas, tight action, fine butt stock and forearm with ebony inlay in the schnable tip, tight wood to metal fit, fitted with a Marbles tang sight paired with a Rocky Mountain blade front sight and a slot filler in the rear dovetail. Probably the only thick side Highwall in .30-40 Krag! $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. VERY EARLY ANTIQUE SERIAL NUMBER 1892 OCTAGON RIFLE, .38 WCF, #36XXX, MADE 1894. This is a fine, unmolested rifle that came out of Arizona. The receiver blue has turned to an attractive aged plum with fine blue on the bolt and loading gate. Similarly, the barrel and mag tube blue has aged to blue/plum. Exc. stock and forearm show light handling only and display very tight wood to metal fit. Exc. screws, original buckhorn rear sight with Winchester small blade front sight. Tight action, bore is a bit dark with good rifling all the way through and maybe a slight bit of frost- a good brushing out will probably be a good idea. This early ’92 has a very attractive overall appearance.  $1695.

  7. 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. $1895.

  8. EXCELLENT CONDITION SPECIAL ORDER 1892 ROUND BARREL RIFLE WITH HALF MAGAZINE, .25-20 CALIBER, #340XXX, MADE 1906. Most people don’t realize that savvy riflemen of the day often ordered their lever action rifles with half magazines is that they tend to be more accurate than full mag rifles.  This is because a fully loaded full magazine hanging on to the bottom of the barrel changes the “harmonics” of the barrel each time a shell is fired and another is fed from the magazine into the chamber. The actual weight of the mag changes with each ejected cartridge and new round fed.  Teddy Roosevelt obviously knew this and ordered almost all of his rifles from Winchester with half magazines as did the British shooters. This rifle retains most of the deep blue on the barrel with only the most minor of ageing. The receiver sides also retain excellent blue with some age and thinning, but basically full coverage. There is some gray/brown on the forward part of the bolt and also on the receiver bottom ahead of the lever. Bore is bright and excellent- if not perfect, not far from it.  Excellent stock and forearm with tight wood to metal fit, exc. screws, tight action, flat top buckhorn rear sight with blade/bead front sight. This is a really fine special order 1892. $1850.

  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. UNUSUAL SPECIAL ORDER 1894 .38-55 WITH ROUND BARREL AND 2/3 MAGAZINE, #585XXX, MADE THE YEAR THE TITANIC SANK IN 1912. This is a really fine condition example that shows about all the blue remaining on the barrel and magazine tube with only very minor ageing. The receiver also retains nearly all the blue with only light edge wear and some dulling from age. Even the bottom of the receiver, upper tang and forend cap retain good lightly aged blue. Excellent butt stock and forearm with tight wood to metal fit. Exc. markings and the barrel is fitted with a buckhorn rear sight with a blade/bead front sight. The butt stock shows a slightly higher grade of walnut which is typical of special order Winchesters. When I received this rifle I looked down the bore and could see no rifling at all! My original thought was that someone shot a bunch of black powder ammo through it and put it away for a few years in a humid climate!  But I WAS WRONG! To my surprise, pleasantly so, I ran an oil patch through the bore and decades worth of dust came out! I think this rifle was cleaned with heavy oil pit in the bore and left standing in a gun rack for a seriously long time. As dust settled into the barrel it stuck to the oil and built up until it completely filled the grooves and lands! A couple of patches revealed a slightly dark bore with fine rifling all the way through and maybe a touch of frost. I did not put a bronze brush through it and I’m sure it will clean even better. This rifle also has a tight action and excellent blue on the loading gate. A great caliber is super condition with a very seldom encountered special order 2/3 magazine. I’ll bet this rifle hasn’t been shot since before World War II! $2450.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. ONE OF THE MOST BEAUTIFUL OF THE POST-WAR LEVER RIFLES IS THIS 1894-1994 CENTENNIAL DELUXE RIFLE IN .30 WCF CALIBER.  Made with gorgeous very high grade and traditional oil finished walnut with exceptional grain pattern, this rifle features a 26” half octagon barrel, half magazine, checkered pistol grip and forearm along with a crescent butt plate. The pistol grip has the classic Winchester embossed hard rubber grip cap. In a classy move, Winchester chose to stamp the caliber in the old “.30 WCF” manner instead of the later .30-30. The barrel is also simply and very tastefully marked "1894-1994." It has as standard a folding Lyman rear sight, small blade/bead front sight plus a tang sight. The receiver is engraved on the right side in the old style with scrolls and a standing deer in a circle; the left side is similar but with a running deer in a circle. These rifles were made in the old New Haven, CT plant and have the traditional Winchester barrel address along with the classic “WINCHESTER PROOF STEEL ESPECIALLY FOR SMOKELESS POWDER.” Just like on the vintage 1894s! Really, a gorgeous rifle in unfired condition (no box) and made in the U.S.A. These will only go up in value. (six photos) $1195.

  17. FINE CONDITION 1895 STANDARD RIFLE IN .30 U.S. CALIBER (.30-40 KRAG), #56XXX, MADE 1906. This is a really nice example that shows most of the blue on the standard 28” barrel with only some wear at the balance point just ahead of the receiver and some light ageing. Has the correct short blade front sight mounted in the barrel ramp/boss, rear barrel sight dovetail fitted with a filler and the receiver mounted with a Providence Tool Co. receiver sight (about the same as a Lyman 21). Fine blue on the receiver with only some light thinning and edge wear. Exc. markings, tight action, fine bore is a little dark with good rifling all the way through. Fine butt stock and forearm with ebony inlay tip. Tight wood to metal fit. Butt stock has a period “hook-eye” swivel stud used with a loop sling that went over the barrel (no swivel hole in the forearm). Attractive example with lots of original finish. $1695.

  18. 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. $2150.

  19. 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.

  20. RARE MODEL 64 DELUXE 20” CARBINE, .30WCF CALIBER, #1117XXX, MADE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE GREAT DEPRESSION IN 1936.  Carbine versions of Model 64 are seldom seen and the deluxe checkered version with super grade sling swivels and pistol grip cap are very rare. This one has seen some honest use, but is solid and not abused. It retains most of the barrel and mag blue with excellent markings and a Marble folding buckhorn rear sight with a blade/bead in the correct front ramp. It is also fitted with a Lyman tang sight. The receiver shows good blue on the side panels in the more protected portions with the balance mixing heavily gray. There is excellent blue on the bolt and loading gate. Stock and forearm generally fine  to excellent with fairly sharp checkering and correct Winchester embossed grips cap. Retains the original checkered steel butt plate and also has the correct sling swivels. Exc. screws, tight action and excellent bore. A very hard to find Great Depression Winchester. $2450.

  21. MODEL 71 STANDARD RIFLE, .348 WCF CALIBER, #35XXX, MADE 1953. A nice example of one of the most powerful lever rifles Winchester made. It retains most of the original blue on all metal surfaces with only a trace of wear. The stock and forearm show light handling/hunting marks only and there is a tiny sling swivel hole in the bottom of the butt stock only. Retains the original checkered steel butt plate and has the original buckhorn rear sight with hooded front sight. Tight action, exc. screws, perfect bore. One of finest big game lever actions ever made! $1695.

  22. 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

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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  CLEAR NON-FOAMING  Gorilla 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 (note: this is the best glue I've tried, but do NOT use the brown foaming Gorilla glue as it pushes the wad up when dry and is awful to correct!). 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