Unknown Model Number

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PTCSmith
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Unknown Model Number

Post by PTCSmith » Wed Apr 18, 2018 9:56 am

I have a Marlin lever gun in the shop. It has a patent date on the octagon barrel of October 11, 1887. The gun is a centerfire, 32 caliber (presumably 32-20), with a top eject action. With this scant information, can any of you identify the model of this gun? I was under the impression that the 1887 rifle was a 25-20. Is there an 1888 rifle?

Bill Jacobs
Bolt&Barrel Gunsmithing, LLC
www.boltandbarrel.com
Greenwood, SC

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marlinman93
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Re: Unknown Model Number

Post by marlinman93 » Wed Apr 18, 2018 11:44 am

the 1887 is simply the last patent date, and not a model designation. It would appear the Marlin in question is a Model 1888, as the Model 1889 would have one more 1889 patent date on the barrel. Guessing it is top eject if it's an 1888 also. If it's side eject then it could be an 1889 with a leftover 1888 barrel on it.
Marlin lever actions 1870's-WWI, Ballards, and single shot rifles!

Regnier (gunrunner)
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Re: Unknown Model Number

Post by Regnier (gunrunner) » Wed Apr 18, 2018 12:39 pm

Bill;

The Marlin Model 1888 was made in .32-20, .38-40 and .44-40 calibers. Marlin did not make a standard production gun in .25-20 caliber until 1894 with the introduction of the Model 1894. In early 1894, Marlin did not offer any of the Model 1894's with a pistol grip stock, so any gun shipped early that year with a pistol grip stock was a Model 1889, and so that is why there are a very few Model 1889's made in .25-20 caliber.
The Model 1888 was made from August of 1888 to October of 1889 with 4,631 guns listed in the old factory records. Of those, only 1,298 were in the .32-20 caliber. Standard barrel length was 24 inches.
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PTCSmith
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Re: Unknown Model Number

Post by PTCSmith » Wed Apr 18, 2018 2:05 pm

Thanks, guys. You're the best!

Bill Jacobs

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