Re: How can you tell if a remington shotgun has a damascus barrel
Wow, I'm no expert here but that never stopped anyone else from jumping in so here is my two cents worth. I also own a Remington 1889, mine being made in 1902. I talked to Remington about it and they told me several different grades of the gun were offered for sale. Grade 1; the most basic of all the guns (and the model I have), came equipped with "nitro proofed" barrels. All higher grades (2, 3, 4, etc.) were manufactured with increasingly fancy wood and embellishments, but all grades above the Grade 1 were offered ONLY with damascus barrels, simply because that's what buyers of the era preferred. I had my 1889 inspected by a local gunsmith who pronounced it in good shape and I fire it occasionally using 2" Polywad light pressure shells. These shells develop about 6000psi (as opposed to a modern 12ga shell which develops 12000+psi) and I have had no problems with the gun. I also have a few damascus barreled guns (notibly a Colt 1878) but refuse to risk damaging the old guns by firing them.