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Re: trial rifles

Posted by Pete Nelson on Sunday, 31 October 2010, at 5:24 p.m., in response to Re: trial rifles, posted by Fred on Sunday, 31 October 2010, at 3:09 p.m.

Hello Fred,

I hope you won't mind my jumping in here at this point since I have just had my Model 1870 Springfield apart for cleaning - - and now research - - and can report:

1. First off it has stamped into the left side of the barrel (just about where the barrel of an M1868 has the S/N stamped below the rear sight) the number "656" in what appears to be same 3/32" high serifed font as is used on the M1868 and the M1969 Cadet. I bought this M1870 from Al Frasca who, at the time, felt that it was some sort of inventory or armory rack number, rather than being a serial number (and as I mentioned earlier , it appears ONLY on the barrel - - NOT on the receiver).

2. The breech block is definitely the thinner style down by the hinge (i.e., it falls farther forward when opened than either my M1868 or M1869 Cadet. The top surface of the breech block at the hinge is definitely slightly BELOW the centerline of the hinge pin. And the block is stamped "MODEL/1870/EAGLE-WITH-ARROWS/US" (with NO periods). It has the long, high arched block design.

3. The rear sight is the M1870 and is located the full 7/16" away from the front edge of the receiver, unlike my M1869 Cadet which is right up against it.

4. It has the M1868 upper sling swivel band (the screw-clamp type) but has the solid lower swivel (rather than the split band with the screw).

5. It has the Model 1870 S.W. Porter-patented rod-lock with the "Aug. 16,1870" patent date stamped in. The cleaning rod is the double-shouldered M1870 design with the un-cupped head (like my M1868 Rifle and M1869 Cadet) which has a total of seven "undulations" (Al's patented descriptive term).

6. It still has the complete spoon and pin (looking brand-new).

7. The receiver has the short-and-shallow gas ports.

8. The lock plate is date-stamped "1863" (my M1868 is stamped "1863" but the M18679 Cadet is "1864").

9. The stock has the "ski slope" countour at the left rear side of the receiver (as does the M1869 Cadet).

10. The base of the one-piece front sight is about 5/16" long, and the front edge of the base is 1-3/16" in from the muzzle crown.

11. There appear to be multiple cartouches (very faint), but the only clearly-discernible one is the "ESA" in the oval located just about midway between the two lockplate screws.

12. There is nothing whatsoever stamped into the bottom surfaces of either the barrel or the receiver or on the bottom surface of the breech screw.

13. The rear corner surfaces of the thumbpiece have been "somewhat" rounded, but it is not the squared-off contour. Somewhere in Al's BOOK II he shows 3 styles of thumbpiece ("squared", "somewhat-rounded", and "rounded", I believe). Mine I would call the second, or "somewhat-rounded" style.

14. There is nothing stamped into the curved wood of the pristine barrel channel.

I hope that perhaps this will be of some help.

With best regards,

PETE


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