Iver Johnson Champion 12 ga.

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by DillHarris, Sep 1, 2008.

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  1. BobT64

    BobT64 New Member

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    Thank you Bill,

    I was just trying to order parts off the Numrich website, but something happened on their end and now it can't display schematic and parts list so I can't complete my order.... :(

    I'll try again later.;)
  2. BobT64

    BobT64 New Member

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    Hey Bill,

    After looking at a nice exploded diagram and my Champion I have figured out that it does not even have the locking bolt sping in place. I have the locking bolt spring screw, but no spring... By the way, my Champion is lightly rusted all over (not inside the bore). What is the best way for me to clean it up and have it re-blued? How much should I expect to pay to have it re-blued?
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2010
  3. b.goforth

    b.goforth New Member

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    this happens a spring will break and it is removed prior to being replaced and sometime it is never replaced or just forgotten about.

    the original finish on all champion single barrel shotguns is blue barrel, casehardened frame and oil finish on the wood. since my retirement i have not kept of with prices on repairs so i can't say what it would cost.

    to clean the lightly rusted surfaces use a very fine steel wool (0000) and a good light weight oil. i still use 3 in 1 machine oil.

    bill
  4. BobT64

    BobT64 New Member

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    Thanks Bill,

    I ordered my parts from Numrich today. I also found a replacement buttstock on Boyds' http://www.boydsgunstocks.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=300-121 today. The buttstock on mine was cracked/splintered up at the very front on the left side where the tang inserts. About 30 years ago my dad and I started refinishing/repairing this gun. However, we could not find anyone at the time that could replace the missing forearm so we stopped. I had sanded down the old buttstock, glued the splintered pieces back together, and varnished the whole thing. It looks nice. However, you can tell that some material has been removed. Now that I have found the forearm I think I may just replace the buttstock also.

    If the old color casehardened receiver/frame has no trace of the casehardening left (looks like someone sanded it down to bear metal :eek:) can it be blued along with the barrel? I don't know if I'll actually go to the trouble to re-blue any of it. I have other old shotguns that the bluing has worn completely off. I just have to keep them cleaned and well oiled. :D
  5. splinterbutts

    splinterbutts New Member

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    Hi Bill,

    I have come into possession of what I believe is a champion side snap shotgun that seems a little different than the ones you guys have been talking about as it doesn't have a patent date it has a patent applied for stamp on the barrel.

    The barrel is 34 inches long
    Champion is on the top of the barrel in a plain type
    and the latch on the barrel it says

    pat. apld. for
    1320

    What do I actually have, and is this pre Iver Johnson?
  6. splinterbutts

    splinterbutts New Member

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  7. b.goforth

    b.goforth New Member

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    this is a early production iver johnson made Hammerless Side Snap. it is also a model i have only seen pictures of and not one i have handled. extra length barrels were always an extra option, i believe the patent pending is for the hammerless action that as far as i can tell was never granted. this is the rarest of all the pre 1897 iver johnson single barrel shotguns.

    CHAMPION SIDE SNAP HAMMERLESS------------------------1880-1900
    Single barrel concealed hammer; 12 gauge only; 30 and 32 inch plain twist steel choked barrel (barrels imported from Belgium); side lever break open mechanism, cocks on opening; double locking bolt; automatic extractors; American Black Walnut butt stock and fore-end; nickel frame and browned barrel; weight 6½ pounds; overall length 45 ¾ inches. . ONLY MARKINGS WILL BE CHAMPION NAME ON TOP OF BARREL AND POSSIBLY PATENT DATE OF JULY 27, 1880
    VALUE: RARE 100%=$325 60%=$155

    bill
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2010
  8. splinterbutts

    splinterbutts New Member

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    Bill,

    Just sent you an email.

    Mike B

  9. BobT64

    BobT64 New Member

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    Well, my Numrich parts arrived today. The locking spring works great! The forend is very light... and the forend cap is black plastic. Not very impressed. Does anyone know where I can find a steel forend cap?
  10. migmachata

    migmachata New Member

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    The serial number on these guns are sometimes letters, they should all come from the word FITCHBURG, which is a town the company was based. I have heard that the letters correspond with numbers;
    F:1
    I:2
    T:3
    C:4
    H:5
    B:6
    U:7
    R:8
    G:9
    X:0
    For example, my gun's number is RRBT, which translates to 8863
  11. mathewj

    mathewj New Member

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    Very new member! Thanks for all the great information on this topic. The reason I found this sight is I just found a western field and I was trying to find the history on it. I found it at a fishing lure show. I knew western fields were made for m. wards but , this gun had solid rib checkering and nice walnut stock. I figured for $50.00 I couldn't go wrong. It is in very good shape. Then I find out it was made by Iver Johnson ! Like everyone else, I am trying to find out what year this is from. The research I found this was made between 1930-1942. Does this sound about right? The serial number is behind the triger gaurd 5 numbers then xe after it. I don't like posting serial numbers on open forums. Any more input would be great! Thanks Matt
    .
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2010
  12. b.goforth

    b.goforth New Member

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    the serial number with a two letter code suffix was used between 1930 and 1939. how ever there is most likely some overlapping so your guess is good enough. the thing that is important about the Matted Rib model sold to montgomery wards is they were not utility grade firearms. they cost more than other single barrel shotguns in the catalog at that time and were used by m. wards as a upgraded deluxe firearm.

    early in the history of iver johnson's arms & cycle works (after about 1902) they took sears & roebuck to court. the cause was selling iver johnson marked firearms at a cost less than the agreed franchise price. they won that case and sears no longer sold iver johnson marked firearms. it was a different business climate at that time.

    CHAMPION MATTED RIB MODEL-----------------1912-1941
    Single barrel centered mounted rebounding hammer; top lever break open mechanism; solid raised full length rib finely matted; American Black Walnut full checkered pistol gripped butt stock, and fore-end; gagues 12,16 and 20; barrel length: 28, 30 and 32 inches full chocked; weight with 30 inch barrel 12 gague 7 ¼ lbs., 16 and 20 gague 7 pounds; automatic extractors or automatic ejectors; case hardened frame and blue barrel; overall length with 30 inch barrel 45 inches; .410 bore added in 1928 with a 28 inch full chocked barrel.
    This model will also be found marked with the WESTERN FIELD brand name
    VALUE: 100%=$315 60%=$150
    Add 10% for the 410 Bore Model
    bill
  13. mathewj

    mathewj New Member

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    Thanks Bill, Matt
  14. scmerrill71

    scmerrill71 New Member

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    I am refinishing a gun for a friend of mine, its an Iver Johnson 12 guage champion, Single shot, serial # 9532. Other markings i have found include an "E" stamped on the barrell end near the hinge pin of the break open, and also the #32848 on the underside of the foreend peice. Any info on the year and if it is black powder or if it will fire the 2 3/4 rounds of today will be much appreciated. I was also informed it was not a working gun and shouldnt be fired, but i figure after i get a few parts for it that are missing, then it will be a working gun.
  15. b.goforth

    b.goforth New Member

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    generally speaking iver johnson shotgun's with out lettercode suffix were manufactured between 1909 and 1919.

    values are posted above.

    the forearm most likely is a replacement as it should have the same number as the reciever
    bill
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