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1873 - 1884 mismatch

Posted by Bill DiBenedetto on Tuesday, 22 June 2010, at 1:00 p.m.

I puchased a Trapdoor last Saturday that has me completely stumped. It has a serial number 479,XXX that would have built in early 1890 which should make it a 1884. It has a cartouche of 1898. However, it has all the features of a 1873 including the lock date of 1873, breech block date of of 1873 and the plain trigger and the rear sight of 1873 and uses the regular bayonet. I would think its a parts rifle except for the fact it appears brand new and unissued. It has almost 100% of the beautiful Springfield original brushed blue finish on all the parts. No signs of reblue. The butt plate has all the bluing on it except on the top edge, where it starts to curve down there is a little rubbing from sitting on a gun rack. The barrel also has similar mark where it would have sat in a rack. The stock has some very minor handling marks but still looks new and the cartouche is absolutely perfect. The case coloring on the breech is faded, Otherwise its a new rifle. In 1890 the rifle was nearing the end of its production life so rework is unlikely. Is it possible it was assembled by Springfield from left over parts in 1898? Krags were in full production by then.


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