Any ideas how old

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by jac63, Oct 14, 2009.

  1. jac63

    jac63 New Member

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    Any ideas how old; S&W revolver and Fox shotgun

    I have 2 guns that were givin to me by my father before he died that belonged to his father. The first is a S&W K-22 Outdoorsman Ser# 639xxx. The other is an A H Fox 12 ga SxS shotgun ser# 186xx. My dad was born in 1932 and told me that grandpa had them as long as he could remember. Unfortunatly I never knew my grandpa as he died before I was born so I don't know the stories behind them. Both are in shootabe condition and I still use them. I have sent both of them to a smith for restoration (I know what it does to the collectors value but don't care) so for now there are no pics.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2009
  2. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    K22 Outdoorsmans were made between 1931 and 1940. SNs 632132 through 696592.

    With a 639xxx SN, that would be early in the run. I would SWAG it to late '32, maybe early '33. If you want more precise, you probably need to get in touch with Smith and Wesson.
  3. jac63

    jac63 New Member

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    Thanks Alpo, I was pretty sure the Outdoorsman started production in '31 but didn't know what serial number they started with. Appreciate the help.
  4. Jolly Bill

    Jolly Bill Member

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    jac63,

    I have to ask: why would want to have the guns restored and remove all the wear, scratches, dings, etc. that your grandfather put in the guns while he hunted and shot them? That's part of the personality of those guns.

    I have my grandfathers shotgun, a Remington Sportsman 20 gauge and a .22 Remington model 510 single shot rifle that my uncle gave me. I might sound sappy but I couldn't think of having them refinished.

    And I guess you already know what it will do to their value.

    Just my $0.02.

    Jolly
  5. Jolly Bill

    Jolly Bill Member

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    jac63,

    I forgot to add, your Fox with serial number 186XX was made around 1913 +/-.

    Jolly
  6. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    Let’s suppose my grandfather bought a Model T Ford, new, in 1927. He drove that thing everywhere he went. Into town. Carried hay to the cows in the pasture. Went way back in the woods for hunting. Let’s further suppose that he drove that car until 1967, when he parked it in the barn and covered it with a tarp.

    Now, I inherit Grandpa’s T. Go out to the barn, take off the rotting tarp. The tires have dry-rotted. The wood steering wheel is cracked. The leather seat is mildewed. The rats have been chewing on anything they can chew on.

    Should I keep this car just like it is, because it has all the little nicks and bumps that give it a personality? I don’t think anybody would suggest that. If I want to keep this car, to remember Grandpa, it’s going to a restorer. When it comes back it will look like it did the day Henry sold it to Grandpa.

    Why should Grandpa’s gun be any different? I’ve got a 73 Winchester. Made in 1895. One of these days, when I’ve got more money than I know what to do with, it’s going to a restorer. I don’t want it to LOOK like it just left the Winchester factory, but I sure want it to WORK like it did.
  7. Jolly Bill

    Jolly Bill Member

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    Alpo,

    You would be doing the absolutely right thing: take your grandfathers old model T Ford and put it in a condition that would be safe to drive.

    jac63 said both guns are in shootable condition, and I suspect safe to shoot.

    And your M73: unless it's been abused, monkeyed with, modified, or some such, I would think it should work as well now as it did when it left the Winchester factory back in 1895. But your gun, your money and I would be happy for you to do whatever pleases you.

    Same for jac63. His guns, he can do whatever makes him happy. I just wanted to politely point out that restoring them is a one way street. To me it would be a loss in the personality of the guns and a loss in value.

    And Ford's aren't Winchester's. And I think you know that.

    Most respectfully, Jolly.
  8. RJay

    RJay Well-Known Member

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    There are times when restoring is the right answer. Most times , such as the Fox, restoring will drop the value.
  9. jac63

    jac63 New Member

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    Jolly, First off thanks for the help on dating the Fox, much appreciated. As for the restoration there is a bit more to that. The Fox does not have the original stock anymore. Back in the '40's when my dad was a kid he fell down while carring it and broke the stock. The replacement was functional but crude. I am having that stock reshaped, checkered and finished to replicate the original (or at least close) the forearm is original and is being recheckered and refinished as the checkering was worn smooth from use. Since the stock is not original the forearm work is moot. Nothing is being done to the metal as it is pretty decent and I like the worn look on it.
    The K-22 is having the metal redone. When my grandpa passed away back in '54 the gun was stored in a leather holster in one of dad's dresser drawers for 40+ years. Dad was not a handgun enthusiast (sp) and it was unintentionaly neglected. The finish is very bad with some light pitting but can still be salvaged. I know dad was sick when he realised what happened but never could afford to fix it. It might not be the right decision for everyone or every gun but I think it is the best course for these two. On a side note I do have the original box for the K-22 in good shape and want to pass all of this on to my daughter someday, so collectors value means very little to me.
  10. RJay

    RJay Well-Known Member

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    Under those conditions I believe you are doing the right thing. However I woild send the K-22 back to S&W for refinishing..
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2009
  11. Jolly Bill

    Jolly Bill Member

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    jac63,

    Your additional information on both guns paints a different picture for me.

    The Fox has already had some changes made to it and it sounds like you're going to try to bring it back closer to looking original. Makes good sense.

    And the S&W with the finish already comprimised sounds like the right thing to do also. Having the original box (is it the red one?) is a big plus.

    I'm sure they will look better than they do now. My apologies for thinking you would be refinishing perfectly respectable looking old Classics.

    Jolly
  12. BothellBob

    BothellBob New Member

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    I am the current "trustee" of the only surviving rifle that started with my great grandfather. I know that rebluing it is a crime against collector value. But the rifle is never to be sold, and soon the sixth generation of his line will have the opportinity to shoot it. It's the family gun, and my responsibility includes keeping it servicable for future generations. That includes keeping it rust free and repairing the damage from firing corrosive ammo 70 years ago. So I'm with the OP. Maybe even consider having it engraved with the names of all the possessors. Write down all the documentation you can; in another 100 years you will be the great grandfather who preserved that awesome hierloom.
    -BothellBob
  13. jac63

    jac63 New Member

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    Jolly, it is the red box with matching serial # on the box. I agree with your original thoughts on restoration in most instances. I love the well worn look on old guns. I have a 1953 (I think) edition Rem 870 that my father-in-law purchased new and carried 100's of days in pursuit of quail. It is scratched up and not too pretty but I wouldn't consider changing a single thing on it.

    Bob, I like the way you think. I have written down a description of how I aquired each of my guns along with serial #'s as well as purchase price, weather it was new or used when I got it etc. All of this because someday my daughter and son-in-law will be right where I am now. I want my grandkids (hint for my daughter) to have some historical reference for each one.
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2009
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