Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

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Marlinman
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Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Marlinman » Tue Aug 02, 2016 1:45 pm

Hi, I'm a Marlin lever action collector (1881 through 1897) but I also collect Marlin Shotguns (Model 1898 through Model 30) and I have a question about matching serial numbers.

I come across many shotguns that have had the original butt plate removed and a non-stock recoil pad installed. My question is:

Did Marlin put a serial number on the stock and if so, did it match the serial number on the receiver (or other parts of the gun)?

My hope is to be able to purchase a shotgun in good condition and remove the non-stock recoil pad and replace the stock with a different gun (same model of course) so I have an original shotgun.

Kindly advise. Thanks everyone!

Mark
Marlin Model 1881 through Model '97 Collector

Regnier (gunrunner)
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Regnier (gunrunner) » Tue Aug 02, 2016 5:10 pm

Mark;

Like the lever action rifles, Marlin did serialize the butt stock to the receiver. The stock(s) were fitted to the receiver prior to finishing both metal and wood, and with the serial numbers, the right stock would be matched to the proper receiver. Also, the hard rubber butt plates will seldom interchange as the butt plate was in place as the stock was finish sanded, and in most cases, no two stocks will be exactly the same size.
If your stock has not been shortened to fit the butt pad, then it would be better to fit a new hard rubber style plate to your old, original stock. Reproduction butt plates made of plastic can be purchased from Gun Grip Company online. They have the right one listed as for the Model 17. They will not fit when you get it, so you have to fit it to your stock. The plastic is to shiny, so I have spray painted them black, and after they dry, take fine steel wool and dull the surface to your liking to look like an original hard rubber butt plate. If done properly, it is very hard to tell from an original. This is about your best bet as original, hard rubber plates seldom come up for sale on eBay, and probably would not fit anyway.
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.

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Marlinman
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Marlinman » Wed Aug 03, 2016 11:20 am

HI Regnier, great info, and very timely. I was looking at two shotguns at LeRoy Merz (both with modified stocks) so I'm going to pass. I'm all about original numbers matching.

Also great info on the buttplate. I have a chipped buttplate on a model 1898 and was wondering if a replacement (original) would be available somewhere, now I know :(

Thanks.

Mark
Marlin Model 1881 through Model '97 Collector

Regnier (gunrunner)
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Regnier (gunrunner) » Wed Aug 03, 2016 9:55 pm

Mark;

If the original chipped butt plate is not to bad, it can be repaired with epoxy putty, shaped and then painted to match. I have done it more than once with great results and it cannot be told from a good butt plate.
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.

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Marlinman
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Marlinman » Thu Aug 04, 2016 11:59 am

Hi Regnier,

Is there a gun restoration company that does that? I've got way more money than time :wink:

Mark
Marlin Model 1881 through Model '97 Collector

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Marlinman
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Marlinman » Thu Aug 04, 2016 12:00 pm

And if I have read the forums you contribute to correctly, you have a Marlin Shotgun Collection right?

Do you have a full set?

What condition do you collect?

What options (i.e. do you only collect "C" or "D" grades)?

Thanks.

Mark
Marlin Model 1881 through Model '97 Collector

Regnier (gunrunner)
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Regnier (gunrunner) » Thu Aug 04, 2016 12:51 pm

Mark;

I have all the exposed hammer models except for the one marked "Field Gun". I have A, B, C and D grades in various models.
I try to keep the overall condition in 90% or better, mostly better. I find that the B grade guns are as hard to find as the D grade guns. Lots of C grade guns out there, but since the B grade gun cost nearly as much as the C grade guns when new, buyers must have stepped up and bought the C grade over the B grade guns.
You do know that there are some records for exposed hammer shotguns? The records cover from 19,601 to 67,000 and list the receiver number, gauge, barrel length, barrel serial number and ship date. The records also indicate the grade if it is B, C or D. If no grade is listed, it is assumed to be the A grade. The records are mostly the Model 1898, but there are some Model 16 listed as well.
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.

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Marlinman
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Marlinman » Fri Aug 05, 2016 12:27 pm

Wow, you do have quite a collection of shotguns, crazy Regnier. How long have you been collecting?

I have a pretty nice Marlin lever-action rifle collection going, but thought I would collect a dozen or so shotguns to display in my fly-fishing ranch house. It's out in the middle of no where and my thinking was shotguns would be less expensive to acquire and thus if they were stolen, it would not be as big of a deal, but I'm finding that good condition older Marlin Shotguns are still pretty pricey (like 3000 to 5000), so maybe 1/2 to 1/3 of a comparable rifle. Orginially, I thought they would be like $1000 a piece................WRONG :oops:

You mentioned factory records, can you tell me about these:

Model 1898 (serial number 39058)
Model 16 (serial number 116911)
Marlin Model 1881 through Model '97 Collector

Regnier (gunrunner)
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Regnier (gunrunner) » Fri Aug 05, 2016 12:46 pm

Mark;

I bought my first "keeper" shotgun in 2005. A "D" grade Model 21. After that, it was all down hill and the shotguns just kept rollin in. The "A" grade guns are still quite affordable, and sometimes you can get lucky on some of the other grades. I bought a spectacular "B" grade Model 19-S at the last Tulsa Gun Show and it was very affordable.

Serial number 39058 is as follows:

Model 1898 C Grade 12 gauge with 30 inch barrel barrel #40238 Shipped: 8-30-1902

The Model 16 number is too high for existing records.
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.

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Marlinman
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Marlinman » Sat Aug 06, 2016 12:59 pm

Thanks Regnier!

What will you do now that you have all your shotguns? Upgrade, or change brands?

Mark
Marlin Model 1881 through Model '97 Collector

Regnier (gunrunner)
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Regnier (gunrunner) » Sat Aug 06, 2016 1:14 pm

Mark;

Very few need upgrading (one or two at best), but that "Field Gun" is a hard one to find in condition, but will keep looking. That is, unless someone comes along and wants to buy them all at one time, as a collection. Unless I find the "Field Gun" I have done about all I intend to do for now. There is always the paper items that enhance a display to look for. I have some of that, too. Old ammunition boxes, etc. help enhance a display too.
I collect other Marlins, too. Handguns and lever guns are always on the "watch" list. Auctions are coming up, and there are some interesting items being offered.
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.

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Marlinman
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Marlinman » Sat Aug 06, 2016 9:08 pm

How many total shot guns do you have? Tell me about this "Field Gun" is that the "Trap Gun"?
Mark
Marlin Model 1881 through Model '97 Collector

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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Regnier (gunrunner) » Sun Aug 07, 2016 8:41 am

Mark;

The "Trap Gun" is marked as such. It is a straight stock, checkered Circassian walnut, Special Smokeless Steel barrel gun made for shooting Trap. It is based on the Model 24.
The "Field Gun" is a shorter barreled version of the "Trap Gun". Both are listed in the Marlin catalogs starting about 1909 for the "Trap Gun" with the "Field Gun" about 1912.
Not sure how many shotguns I have, I kinda have a rule not to count the number of guns I have. I figure if I can count them, I do not have enough.......
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.

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Marlinman
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Marlinman » Sun Aug 07, 2016 1:04 pm

I see the difference, I'll keep my eye out, if I come across a "trap" I'll let you know, you need it more than me :wink:
Marlin Model 1881 through Model '97 Collector

Regnier (gunrunner)
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Re: Matching serial numbers on stock vs. receiver?

Post by Regnier (gunrunner) » Sun Aug 07, 2016 1:40 pm

Mark;

I have the "Trap Gun", it is the one marked "Field Gun" that I am looking for. I passed on a couple several years ago as they were a little short on condition. Looking back, maybe should have purchased the better one with the hopes of upgrading later. Oh well, as they say, "hindsight is 20-20".
I never regret the guns I have bought, it is the ones I did not buy that tend to make me think back on what should have been.
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.

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