Back in October 2005, 4 years ago,
if you look at post #8 in this thread, I said there were only 3 known
Variations of O.F.Mossberg & Sons' "Founding Father," the venerable Brownie 4-shooter. That is no longer true.
A few months ago through my researching these little guys, I discovered there is a heretofore unrecognized FOURTH
Variation. Its differences are so subtle it probably was simply overlooked. After some discussion with the Havlins and other knowledgable Mossie aficionados, it was named the Variation 2.5 because its barely discernible differences had obviously come about between the wrongly dated Variation #2 and the later, more familiar Variation #3 with the correct patent date which continued until the end of production.
Here's how to spot this elusive critter.
The patent date on the right side of the barrel cluster shows the correct July 27, 1920 date, BUT, there is NO serial number visible externally, AND, the right side plate has NO alignment pin at top center.
To check the serial number one must remove the right grip to find the FULL serial number stamped into the side of the grip frame at the very bottom. Then one must open the gun and check on the right side of the barrel cluster down near the hinge, AND, under the "ears" on the front of the barrel latch lever. Both may only be the last few digits of the full number.
Unlike the later Variation #3, this #2.5 also has the full number stamped on the back of both metal side plates and sometimes pencilled on the back of both ridged walnut grips.
So, next time you see a Brownie you might want to check it closely as there are now TWO very scarce - dare I say RARE - Variations of the little fellow. You might be lucky enought to find one of them.
Best regards ~ ~ ~ FFF
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