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Old July 28, 2008, 07:27 PM   #1
KROIL
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Savage Model 99 F info

I have a Savage Model 99 F rifle. In .308 win. S/N 944,xxx. Lever safety. I just cant seem to find a mfgr. date for it. Anyone have a clue ? Thanks
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Old July 28, 2008, 10:37 PM   #2
guntotin_fool
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That rifle is categorically unsafe. YOU must give it to me to prevent you from getting inflicted with 99-osis. a most perilous and deadly disease.

Age is a little hard to say, the demi definitive way is this

In 1949, Savage began stamping a tiny, lightly impressed oval on the lower, front side of the "lever boss".

The “lever boss” is the extension of the lower part of the receiver into which the lever fits and rotates. Inside the oval, Savage stamped the letter "A" together with other numbers which are apparently inspector’s numbers.

On many Model 99 rifles, this “oval” is indistinct or difficult to read as are the letters and numbers inside the oval. On my own late model “EG”, serial #709XXX, made in 1953, only the upper case letter “E” and the rear half of the oval’s circumference (which looks like a large, faint, backwards letter "C") barely show on the lever boss. The front half of the oval’s circumference and whatever is inside the oval in front of the letter “E” are indistinguishable.

The letters “O” and “Q” were skipped and not used due to their similar appearance.

Here is a complete list of the Lever Boss Codes and their corresponding year of manufacture:
A= 1949
B= 1950
C= 1951
D= 1952
E= 1953
F= 1954
G= 1955
H= 1956
I= 1957
J= 1958
K= 1959
L= 1960
M= 1961
N= 1962
O= SKIPPED
P=1963
Q= SKIPPED
R= 1964
S= 1965
T= 1966
U= 1967
V= 1968
W= 1969
X= 1970

I believe the extended action was not released until 1957 and the tang safety was started in 1964, so between those years your gun should sit.
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Old July 29, 2008, 05:39 PM   #3
KROIL
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Thanks for your reply. I was thinkin late 50's cuz of the safety change over. I think the sporting .308 win round hit the woods in 57. Yes it is stamped F on the boss. Its also marked as an F model on the barrel. Its a pretty accurate shooter too. I wish I had one in .358.
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Old July 29, 2008, 11:15 PM   #4
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.358's in 99's and model 88 winchesters are like the proverbial RCH, everybodies heard of them, very few have seen them.....
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Old July 30, 2008, 05:30 PM   #5
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G.T.F was I incorrect on that rare 99 chambering ? I thought .358 was the top stock factory chambering fer 99's. My wife tells me I am wrong all the time - so I might be......
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Old July 30, 2008, 08:54 PM   #6
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I believe thats the rarest of the modern loadings, by a long shot except for Maybe the 375 winchester, which was only offered for a year or two. I have seen two, both priced at exorbitant levels for the time, when 250 to 300 dollars was LOT of money for a nice 99, I saw one for $900. I found one last summer up in walker at Reeds and they wanted $1750 for a rough gun.

The best chambering in my mind is the 300 savage, it takes well to handloading but its good in factory form too, it gives up next to nothing to a .308, but by virtue of being a couple of tenths shorter in OAL, the lever swing is about 20 degrees less, which makes follow up shots so much easier. The 250 savage is the sweet chambering in a 99 for most deer and smaller game. its virtually recoiless in the 99, and I have several. If you have a smaller person or one who has developed a flinch, the 250 in a 99 is a wonderful gun.

I have taken black bear, elk, many deer, and one antelope with my 300, and love it, I have a older 1x4.5 leupold scope on it, and its perfect for me. ( I have a couple of closets and safes full of guns, but my hunting rifle is my 99 in 300.)

besides the 243, 308 and 358, and the 250 and 300 savage, the 99 was chambered in 3030, 303 savage, 32-40, 38-55, 22 hi power, and 410 shotgun.
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Old July 31, 2008, 10:19 AM   #7
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A serial number near 1 million should put you solidly into the 1970s production wise.

As for rarity of chambering, I think it's a toss up between the .358 and the .284. Neither round was chambered very long, and it appears that not many were made.

I've seen numerous .284s and .358s over the years, and they ALWAYS command significant premiums.

The Savage 99 was offered in more standard calibers than any other lever-action rifle.
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Last edited by Mike Irwin; July 31, 2008 at 04:02 PM.
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Old July 31, 2008, 03:53 PM   #8
guntotin_fool
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I forgot about the 284, only seen one.

Mike, the lever safety was dropped in 65, when they went to the tang safety. As you can see here, the tang safety is clearly visible on the top of the cover image...
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 1965.jpg (46.7 KB, 1012 views)
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Old July 31, 2008, 04:25 PM   #9
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:D

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Old July 31, 2008, 05:20 PM   #10
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Quote:
.358's in 99's and model 88 winchesters are like the proverbial RCH, everybodies heard of them, very few have seen them.....
I just purchased my first 99 this year, and it was in .358 Win!!! Cost me about $750 but was money well spent for a nice 99 that looked almost NIB. I haven't got to have much fun with it yet, but I hope to use it on Elk in the future.
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Old July 31, 2008, 09:49 PM   #11
Mike Irwin
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OK, I was wrong about the serial number.

Doug Murray's book on 99 says that the change to the tang safety came in 1960 for the F model.

Interestingly, the .358 was chambered from 1956-68 and from 1977-1980, FAR longer than the .284 (1969-1972) or the .375 (1979-1980).

I knew there was a cartridge missing from the ones mentioned here, but I just couldn't put my finger on it. It was the 7mm-08.
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Old August 4, 2008, 12:24 PM   #12
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Savage 99 features & Mfg. dates

Seems to be much confusion on Savage 99 dating & feature changes. Best
authority is the book "The Ninety-Nine" third edition by Douglas P. Murray.
Try used/out of print thru Amazon, AbeBooks, Books-A-Million, can be found
new or near-new at about $30. I've owned 3 99F models in .243, .308 and
.300 Sav. 1960 marked serial no. 1,000,000 and also top tang safety, and
bought the last two on GunBroker.com at fair to bargain prices. Some will be
overpriced starting prices, others are "sleepers" with possibly no bids and no
"reserve" price. Don't waste time searching for these guns at pawnshops or
gun shows, they will nearly always be priced higher.
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Old August 4, 2008, 01:59 PM   #13
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Savage 99 ID

Many thanks to Guntotin Fool for the list of lever boss stamp codes. Serial No. list in Doug Murray's 99 book only go thru 1950. Wish we had a book on
Savage like RL Wilson's on Colt, Winchester, & Ruger. Addendum to Kroil's
parachute analogy. Your mind is also like a parachute - only works when
it's open.
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Old August 4, 2008, 02:47 PM   #14
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I have Doug's book.

He signed it for me.
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Old August 4, 2008, 09:30 PM   #15
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And, if you can't find a used book anywhere, go straight to the horse himself:

Doug Murray
20 Polo Lane
Westbury, NY 11590

Maybe get an autographed copy, and thereby "keep up with Mike."

BTW Address obtained and publically listed at 24hourcampfire. May or may not be dated. Nice site for the 99 enthusiast.
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Old August 6, 2008, 04:10 PM   #16
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That's exactly how I got an autographed copy.

I bought it from him!

I actually bought it to replace a secon edition that I used so much it fell apart.

As of about 2.5 years ago he was still living at that address.
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Old August 8, 2008, 05:08 PM   #17
RafterM1
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Doug Murray book, "The Ninety Nine"

Very good advice from Sodbuster & thanks for Doug Murray's address, I
did not have that when I found one thru Amazon, but my copy was autographed also. Mike Irwin seems to be the expert & major owner of these
rifles, & has to be a great guy with all that sitting in a dark room, sipping fine
bourbon, smoking Camels, maybe even fondling one of his many Savage 99's!!
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Old August 8, 2008, 11:02 PM   #18
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Yep, RafterM1, Mike is extremely knowledgeable when it comes to firearms use, manufacture, history, et al. I was actually joking about keeping up with Mike. He's a few light years beyond me.
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Old August 9, 2008, 12:41 AM   #19
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My father-in-law has numerous Savage 99's and I have one chambered in a 308. He's always looking for more Savage 99's and he just found one chambered in a 284. He told me about it and I had never heard of one being chambered in a 284. I thought maybe it was rebarreled, but I guess after reading this, I was wrong. Anyway, he is buying it from the guy for $600, sight unseen with 4 boxes of ammo. According to the owner, the gun is in really good condition and is a good shooter. He said that he had a couple of them already and he inherited it from his wife's father. I'm guessing now this is a really good deal if it is in fact in the condition that it was described.
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Old August 9, 2008, 09:49 AM   #20
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My Savage 99 308 Win rifle date code is ( 17 I ).. The letter I = 1957 year but what does the number 17 mean ?
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Old August 9, 2008, 01:55 PM   #21
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That would tend to be an absolutely KILLER price for a .284 with 4 boxes of ammunition.

The last .284 I saw was pushing $1k, and I've seen a few over $1k.

"Mike Irwin seems to be the expert & major owner of these
rifles..."

Thank ye for the effusive compliment.

Unfortunately, I have but one Savage 99, an EG made in 1936.

I remember the very first time I saw a picture of a 99, it was on the cover of American Rifleman magazine around 1975.

The graceful lines absolutely hooked me.

I have also become quite enamored with the .300 Savage cartridge. I own three rifles chambered in .300 Savage, the 99, a Remington 722, and a Remington 81.

But, a friend of mine is moving to California in a few weeks. He e-mailed me and told me that he was giving me his .300 Savage because he knows that I will appreciate it.

His asking price?

Dinner.

To be honest, I'd much rather he stay on the East coast.
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Old August 9, 2008, 04:40 PM   #22
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My first post election rifle will be a Savage 99. My uncle and aunt who traveled the u S during the 40' and 50's used them and I've loved them since.
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Old August 12, 2008, 06:43 PM   #23
RafterM1
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Savage .250-3000 Powerhouse?

Doug Murray's book "The Ninety-Nine" has a reprint from the 1921 catalog,
which states that since 1914, the .250-3000, 87 gr. bullet had killed every
big dangerous game animal in the world. Alaskan Brown Bear, Polar Bear,
Grizzly, Moose, Elk, & Caribou in North America. Tiger & Wild Boar in Asia.
Leopard, Lion, Rhino, Hippo, Buffalo & Elephant in Africa. All at the hands
of well-known American big-game hunters with exceptional experience!!

I'd love to hear everyone's feedback on this, as all of you together also
total years & lifetimes of exceptional experience, even if not around the
world, but you know the cartridge. Any opinions??
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Old August 13, 2008, 12:22 AM   #24
Mike Irwin
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I'm sure that it's actually been done.

I'm also sure that there have been a couple of close calls, and perhaps even a nasty "mashing into paste of the great white bwana" when the little cartridge with the little bullet failed to do its job.

It's called marketing hype.
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"The gift which I am sending you is called a dog, and is in fact the most precious and valuable possession of mankind" -Theodorus Gaza

Baby Jesus cries when the fat redneck doesn't have military-grade firepower.
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Old August 13, 2008, 09:01 AM   #25
RafterM1
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Lever Action Sharpshooters

Recommend a fun book called "Huntin' Gun" by Walter R. Rodgers, published by
Washington Infantry Journal Press in 1949. May be available thru Amazon,
AbeBooks, even Barnes & Noble, Used & Out of Print. Set in early 1900's, and
about fantastic shooters & accomplishments made with their guns, observed
by Walter Rodgers as he drifted across South Texas, into New Mexico, as a
working Cowboy. Many were old Winchesters in pistol calibers, .32-20 up to
.30-30, with or without sights (broken off) breaking deer's necks, running or
not, at even 100 yards. No scopes, bolts, or modern mega cartridges for
these boys, they could just SHOOT, with whatever they had, often from
horseback, because they "knew their gun" and carried it every day. It's a
very good read, especially for boys just starting out! DL at Rafter M Ranch
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