MARLIN MODEL 16 ENGRAVED SHOTGUN

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victorio1sw
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MARLIN MODEL 16 ENGRAVED SHOTGUN

Post by victorio1sw » Fri May 12, 2017 3:08 am

I have what appears to be a Marlin Model 16 shotgun, factory engraved, fancy burl walnut. The frame SN is in the 1147xx range.

One question is - can I get a factory letter on this gun from the Cody Records Museum?


Would like to post pictures for comment, but being new to this forum, don't see any way to upload jpg images from my computer.

Also - after a google search I saw a similar question, with picture, posted (by rigged » Wed Feb 10, 2010 4:18 pm). But after signing in, cannot seem to locate this post and any replies. How can I find this question and answers? True, it dates back to 2010, but certainly it is there somewhere.

Regnier (gunrunner)
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Re: MARLIN MODEL 16 ENGRAVED SHOTGUN

Post by Regnier (gunrunner) » Fri May 12, 2017 6:39 am

Victorio1sw;

The serial number for your Marlin Model 16 is to high for existing Marlin shotgun records.
To find the post by "rigged", go to the search box in the upper right hand corner and type in rigged It will lead you to any post with the word rigged in it. Find the post by rigged and click on that.
To post pictures, go to the "No Longer Guest Questions" section, scroll down through to the post titled "Old Marlin in New Zealand" and find the post by Road King that gives instructions on how to post pictures.
Due to the increasing cost of ammunition, there be no warning shot!

The growing federal deficit = generational slavery to the national debt.

If the world was perfect.......it wouldn't be.

Henryflook
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MARLIN MODEL 16 ENGRAVED SHOTGUN

Post by Henryflook » Mon Sep 25, 2017 11:26 am

Very nice. I have a model 29 and it is a blast to shoot. That screw in the tang is weird eh?
Vehicle History Report http://vinnumbercheck.net/vehicle-check.html

BarkeyVA
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Re: MARLIN MODEL 16 ENGRAVED SHOTGUN

Post by BarkeyVA » Fri Oct 06, 2017 7:36 pm

According to Brophy on pages 365-366 in his book, Marlin Firearms, A History of the Guns and the Company That Made Them, published in 1989 by Stackpole Books, the Model 16 was available in 16 ga only and was chambered for 2-3/4" shells. It was the first 16 ga shotgun Marlin manufactured and was sold from 1903 to 1910 in four grades (A,B,C,D). Prices ranged from about $25 for the Grade A to $95 for the Grade D.

Barrels and frames were serial numbered, but according to Brophy, the numbers for each are different. The lowest known serial number is 59,531 and the highest is 142,847.
BarkeyVA

victorio1sw
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Re: MARLIN MODEL 16 ENGRAVED SHOTGUN

Post by victorio1sw » Fri Oct 06, 2017 9:26 pm

The right side of my barrel is stamped 96151F, which I assume indicates "Full" choke. As you mentioned, it doesn't match the frame number in the 1147xx range.

The gun appears to be unaltered, and still has its original "Marlin" hard rubber buttplate (no added recoil pad). The buttstock was made of extremely fancy burl walnut, and the pistol grip was finely checkered with a double-lined border. The fore end is also checkered with a double-lined border, but the walnut is straight-grained. The barrel appears to be in its original 26” length.

The top of barrel is roll-marked with a two-line address, with the lower line reading “Pat’d Nov. 6, 1884. May 12, 1896. & June 2, 1896”. The top breach end of barrel is stamped “16. Ga.”, while the left side of barrel reads "Special Smokeless Steel".

There is no "Marlin Model 16" on the upper tang. The left side of the frame is engraved w/four flying ducks within a large oval, surrounded by small scrolls that are outside that oval. The right side of frame is engraved w/two flying ducks on the bolt cover, with the lower frame area filled w/small scrolls. There is a nifty engraving pattern around the frame serial number. The frame retains 90% bright blue, while the barrel displays 30% fading blue.

1. One of my main objectives was to understand which grade of engraving is on my Marlin Model 16.
2. I need to see examples of those engraving grades, to determine which one I have. I still see no way to upload jpg images of my gun from my computer, so that you can see the engraving coverage.
3. I have not yet contacted the folks at Cody, Wyoming to see if they have records on my shotgun.
4. Another question regards the safety in shooting this shotgun. I probably won't be shooting it, but if sold, then someone else surely might. I would never recommend other than low base 16 Ga shotshells, to keep the pressures down.

I have been a member of the NRA for 60 years, the TGCA for almost 50, and more recently a member of the CCA, RSA, and S&WCA. I have done much antique gun restoration in the last 55 years, have written a few gun articles, and so am no novice on antique guns. However, in those years I have done almost zero with Marlins, other than to help friends find some very rare ones.

Regnier (gunrunner)
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Re: MARLIN MODEL 16 ENGRAVED SHOTGUN

Post by Regnier (gunrunner) » Sat Oct 07, 2017 8:04 am

Victorio1sw;

Your engraved Marlin Model 16 is a Grade "C" gun from your description of the engraving. That is the standard pattern of engraving for the Grade "C". The Special Smokeless Steel is standard for the "C" grade guns. The Grade "D" guns had a Damascus barrel and far more elaborate engraving and checking on Circissian walnut stocks.
Cody will not have any records for your Model 16. The few existing records start at 19,000 and end at 67,000. There are no other records available for the Marlin shotguns.
The "F" in the barrel serial number does stand for a full choke.
Safety of these old Marlin shotguns is an issue. If you go to the "SHOTGUN" section of this Message Board, the first post deals with how to go about checking the action to insure it's safety. The action is somewhat complicated and can be a challenge to work on. From the sounds of the condition of your gun, it is probably okay. But do the safety checks outlined in the post first.
The main thing about the action is the locking bolt. If it is dirty and does not lock up properly, then the breech bolt can be released from the action when fired. Think about where your head is when you fire it!!
Due to the increasing cost of ammunition, there be no warning shot!

The growing federal deficit = generational slavery to the national debt.

If the world was perfect.......it wouldn't be.

victorio1sw
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Re: MARLIN MODEL 16 ENGRAVED SHOTGUN

Post by victorio1sw » Sat Oct 07, 2017 12:58 pm

Regnier,

Many THANKS for the informative reply. About 2 years ago I did read that long series of checks to determine the safety of firing one of these Model 16's. That check list would make anyone wonder if this model soon got an ugly reputation for "blowing up" in a shooter's face!! NO Shotgun or Rifle should be able to fire if the locking bolt is not fully engaged.

The Win 1866 could perhaps discharge without the links being fully in-line. On the Win 1873, with the same action design, Winchester did come back and add a safety device that would unlock the trigger only when the lever depressed that safety pin. Other rifles by Winchester and Marlin employed some type of segmented firing pin that prevented firing without adequate locking bolt engagement. So if the Marlin Model 16, manufactured 1903-10, had such a safety issue, then it would seem that Marlin would have recalled it and ceased production.

The black powder guns could easily become heavily fouled, causing mechanism issues and cartridges to become stuck going in/out of a chamber. With the advent of smokeless powder, most of those issues should have disappeared, unless someone never cleaned their gun.

Did Marlin issue a warning about these Model 16's after getting reports of bolts being blown back?

Again THANKS!

PS/The Brunswick Company issued an advisory about 1915 to all past purchasers of their pool and billiard tables. Brunswick recommended that these rooms for entertainment should be called "Billiard Halls", and NOT "Pool Halls". They went on to explain that the word "Pool" had acquired a BAD NAME, and thus their recommendation!!
I thought that this might be found amusing, as it happened about the same time as when these shotguns were manufactured.

Regnier (gunrunner)
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Re: MARLIN MODEL 16 ENGRAVED SHOTGUN

Post by Regnier (gunrunner) » Sat Oct 07, 2017 2:35 pm

Victorio1sw;

There are a couple of safeties in these shotguns. But, everything has to be in proper working order for them to work. The firing pin is one piece, and the locking bolt is supposed to prevent the firing pin from going forward if the locking bolt is not in the fully, down and locked position. Also, there is the secondary safety sear that is not supposed to allow the hammer to fall if the locking bolt does not disengage it when it drops down, into the proper locking position.
Even with these safety devices, there have been instances that the breech bolt let go.
Marlin did not send out a safety notice about these shotguns at the time they were made. Back then, there were no product recalls. Sometime in the 1990's, Marlin did print up a notice that these old, pump action shotguns could be unsafe to shoot, and advised owners not to fire them. If these guns are in proper working order, they can be shot, but as you surmised, only with low brass and low pressure loads.
Interesting story about the Brunswick, Balke and Collendar Company advising their customers how to advertise their business. I had not heard that.
Due to the increasing cost of ammunition, there be no warning shot!

The growing federal deficit = generational slavery to the national debt.

If the world was perfect.......it wouldn't be.

victorio1sw
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Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2013 4:51 pm

Re: MARLIN MODEL 16 ENGRAVED SHOTGUN

Post by victorio1sw » Sat Oct 07, 2017 11:39 pm

Regnier,

Thanks for the additional detail about the intended safety features designed into the Marlin Model 16 shotguns. While growing up about 55 years ago, I met a man who made the mistake of carrying two gauges of shotgun shells. I don't recall the exact gauges, but let's say that he had 16 gauge and 20 gauge shotshells in his coat. One of the smaller gauge was accidentally loaded into this pump or auto shotgun. He thought that it misfired because of not feeding, so another shell was thrust into the chamber. The barrel exploded (split open) about 8" down the bore from the receiver, and he lost fingers over that. In his welding shop that shotgun was displayed on the wall, as a warning to everyone that this could happen again!

Thanks again for your information on this Marlin. We cannot be cautious enough with some of these old designs of rifles, pistols, and shotguns.

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