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Confounding markings, 1940's Model 12
April 8, 2019
8:58 pm
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So, I recently purchased a Model 12 with serial number 934,XXX.  It was listed by the seller as a riot gun.  It has a confusing upside down simple flaming bomb looking marking on the rear right side of the receiver.  Any ideas?

 

It seems to pre-date the WWII purchase event, and I believe it is either 1941 or 1942 production.  

 

If it is just a junker, I think I will convert it to a reproduction trench-gun

 

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April 8, 2019
9:57 pm
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Kingston, WA
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The partial serial number indicates October 1941. I would not refer to any Model 12 as a "junker". The stock has been altered for the recoil pad, and the flaming bomb stamp is not authentic, but it is still a Model 12 Riot Gun.

Bert

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April 9, 2019
1:46 am
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Thank you for the information.  I don't think of it as a junker, in the sense that it is trash or anything, I just meant if its a gun that has been hacksawed down to 20" and its not a true factory riot gun, I might think about making a trench gun tribute. 

 

Can you tell me more with the full serial number?

Its 934851

April 9, 2019
2:03 am
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Casey-

Since the barrel is stamped “FULL” I suspect you’re right about it being a cut down field gun. More alterations won’t affect the value much, I suppose.

 

Mike

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April 9, 2019
4:21 am
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Kingston, WA
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Casey said
Thank you for the information.  I don't think of it as a junker, in the sense that it is trash or anything, I just meant if its a gun that has been hacksawed down to 20" and its not a true factory riot gun, I might think about making a trench gun tribute. 

 

Can you tell me more with the full serial number?

Its 934851  

There are no surviving records other that the Polishing Room serialization records, so No, I cannot tell you anything more about it.  If the barrel is marked "FULL" it is most likely a cut down Field grade gun.

Bert

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April 10, 2019
9:43 pm
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Thank you all for your responses.  They are very informative and I appreciate it greatly.

I know I may be adjusting the evidence to describe my desired narrative here, but...

I found another gun on a website which was stamped with a similar, simplistic flaming bomb cartouche.

I feel like if the goal of the builder was to forge a riot gun, wouldn't they make sure to place the cartouche the right way up? 

I removed and measured the barrel and it is nearly exactly 20 1/16", and the front bead sight is nicely done.

 

Is it possible that my shotgun was pressed into service from a field gun, and the upside down flaming bomb was a careless ordnance worker?

April 11, 2019
4:15 am
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Kingston, WA
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Casey,

Almost anything was possible during the early months of WW II.  That stated, the odds are greater that it is simply a cut-down Field gun with a fake ordnance marking.  There simply is no possible way to prove any scenario, so the wise thing for a potential buyer to do is assume the worst.

Bert

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April 11, 2019
2:59 pm
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So, I don't plan on selling it.  I have an ethical dilemma with selling something that may not be authentic.  So, should I leave it alone and let it be a mystery shotgun or should I make a reproduction trench gun? ( an authentic one will never be within my gun collection budget)

 

I am on the fence about what to do here.  (A barbed wire fence in no-mans land it would seem)Laugh

April 11, 2019
4:05 pm
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Casey,

Only you can decide what course of action to embark on, so I will leave you with this final thought... a gun is only original once, and that gun is not 100% original today.

Bert

WACA 6571L, Historian & Board of Director Member
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