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Old November 29, 2012, 01:18 PM   #1
shafter
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Old Remington safe to shoot?

I've got an old Remington 1894 single shot shotgun and I'm wondering if it's safe to shoot with modern ammo. It seems to be in good condition with no defects that I can see. I've never seen one like it before and it has a little cocking lever on the side.

It does need a bead for the front sight. Any suggestions on where to find one?

Shoot or don't shoot?
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Old November 29, 2012, 01:59 PM   #2
plouffedaddy
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If you've looked through the barrel with a light and saw nothing inside or out that looks out of place I'd think it's good go go. I'd still start out with some light birdshot though....
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Old November 29, 2012, 02:05 PM   #3
BigJimP
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With all due respect - there is no way, over the internet, that any of us can really tell you if its ok or not to shoot, in my opinion.

I think you need to take it to a competent gunsmith - and have it checked.
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Old November 29, 2012, 03:33 PM   #4
shafter
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I'm mostly worried about the steel they used back then being strong enough to handle modern ammo.
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Old November 29, 2012, 04:17 PM   #5
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What is the wording on the barrel??? Anything mentioning "nitro"? Or "smokeless"? How about shell length? It may have a shorter chamber even if made for smokeless powder and a 2 3/4 inch shell fired in a 2 9/16ths or 2 5/8ths or whatever old chamber length of the times would be less than a wise decision... If it is a smokeless proof tested weapon with a short chamber, you can get shorter shells or possibly have the chamber cut to modern shell lenghts... But a QUALIFIED GUN SMITH should be sought for their expertise first...

Brent
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Old November 29, 2012, 04:26 PM   #6
shafter
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The only markings beside the serial number is on the tang. It says,

Remington Arms Co
Ilion NY USA
Pat Oct 30 1894

A 2 3/4 shell fits in the chamber. There aren't any gunsmiths in my area so I may just pass on shooting it. It's not like it's my only scattergun.
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Old November 29, 2012, 05:09 PM   #7
hogdogs
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PASS FOR NOW!!! A 2 3/4 shell that is UNFIRED will fit as the length indicates FIRED and when fired, the hull will open into the forcing cone in front of the chamber and this reduces the required diameter thus pressure would spike in a short chamber.

Here is a "chamber gauge" this is all you need to measure...


http://www.csmcspecials.com/Handy_Mo...ge_p/t0321.htm

If you trust your own eyes and ability... it may serve your needs fine...

Brent
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Old November 29, 2012, 07:02 PM   #8
PetahW
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It sounds like you have a Remington No.9 Rider Single Shot (The No.3 Rider didn't have the patent date marked in it).

If it is, it should have a removeable hinge pin, like the one below.



Please consider that the gun was made with steels, of 110-year-old technology, and not the same as modern steels.

Also consider that the ammo companies upgraded ALL commercial shotshell ammo about 85 years ago (in 1925), with higher pressures, etc.

Then think about exactly what stress' that metal's been through in the last 110+ years.

IMHO, before firing it, it would behoove you to take it to a gunsmith that knows what they're doing, and not some AR parts-changer, to get it checked out for internal tightness, on/off face (like headspace), and small dents (fixable) or bulges (an unfixable time bomb), etc, etc.

THEN, if/when it checks out OK, special, low-powered modern ammo for these old guns (I have an Ithaca from 1911) is available from the likes of RST, PolyWad, Kent Cartridge, GameBore & others.

NO other modern ammo is safe - including so-called "low brass", and "target" or "field" loads.


.
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Old November 29, 2012, 08:24 PM   #9
plouffedaddy
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Quote:
With all due respect - there is no way, over the internet, that any of us can really tell you if its ok or not to shoot, in my opinion.
Agreed.

Quote:
If you trust your own eyes and ability... it may serve your needs fine...
Agreed.
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Old November 29, 2012, 08:27 PM   #10
shafter
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Yep that's what I have PetaW.

Ok so it sounds like the consensus is to not shoot it. It would be cool to have some old fashioned black powder shells for it.
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Old December 1, 2012, 12:14 PM   #11
PetahW
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You don't need BP shells, although they do make awesome smoke (and a huge cleanup necessary later).

If/after a qualified gunsmith (not some parts-changer) says it's safe to shoot at all, as I posted above:

"special, low-powered modern ammo for these old guns (I have an Ithaca from 1911) is available from the likes of RST, PolyWad, Kent Cartridge, GameBore & others."



.
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Old December 1, 2012, 11:51 PM   #12
olddrum1
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Heres a thought. Seminole makes barrel inserts that would alow you to safely fire 20, 28, or 410 shells in this firearm.
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Old December 4, 2012, 01:15 PM   #13
PetahW
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Not necessarily.

Think it through, before giving someone advice like that - Barrel inserts certainly are strong enough to contain modern shotshell pressures, as far as the barrel(s) is/are concerned, but offer absolutely NO protection against a worn, cracked/broken action, or one made of weak 100+ year-old steel or cast iron (in some cases).

That's for full-length inserts.

Chamber inserts also offer no protection against the higher pressures of modern ammo DOWNBORE, where older gun's barrel(s) may be very thin.

Bottom line - have ANY old gun checked first by somebody that knows what they're about.


.
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