View Full Version : Sweet 16

November 19, 2008, 11:41 PM
Had it for years. Now I'm interested in what I have. My great uncle used this shotgun as his duck gun for years and years. He passed in 89 and I got this shotgun. He passed his love of waterfowling on to me, and although I hunt with a more modern "snob" benelli, occassionally I take this out for nostalgia sake. It is an old 16 ga. A5 with the safety on the front of the trigger guard. Does anyone know when they moved the safety? I think it was in the 30's. It has a 26 inch barrell with a poly-choke.

Any info would be useful. Thanks.

Jeff Mulliken
November 20, 2008, 07:53 AM
The safety was changed to a cross block safety in the second half of 1951.

Post the serial number and I'll let you know what year it was made.


November 20, 2008, 12:14 PM
Thanks for your help Jeff. The serial number is 45471. It is the Belgian made FN/Browning.

Jeff Mulliken
November 20, 2008, 05:13 PM
Your gun was made in the first half of 1926.

It was made to shoot 65mm (2 9/16") 16 ga shells. It will be marked 16-65 in the proof marks.

Many of these were converted to allow for 2 3/4" shells. Do you know if it was converted? You must as you indicate you shoot it....


November 21, 2008, 03:31 PM
Yes, it must have been as I shoot doves and the occasional duck hunt with it. Do you know if the Poly-choke was an original feature, or is it an aftermarket add on? For hunting, I absolutely hate it and had crazy thoughts about having it removed and replaced with interchangeable tubes. If the gun was in primo shape I would not do it, but this thing has been a working gun for a long time and bears the scars to prove it.

Once again, thanks for all your help.

Dave McC
November 21, 2008, 08:38 PM
Polychokes were aftermarket and still are.

Lots of these have been retrobobbed in recent years and converted to tubes. Not all barrels have enough metal in them to convert. Get a decent smith to look it over before operating.

Jeff Mulliken
November 21, 2008, 08:55 PM

While I'm in lock step with almost all of Dave McC's posts I have to differ on this one.

Polychokes were not all aftermarket. And there is a way to tell if it was installed at the factory.

Just unscrew the choke end to reveal the collar and if you find a number 9 or 11 then it was a factory option. The number 11 was the dealer number for Browning and the number 9 was the dealer number for Fabrique Nationale.

Keep in mind that the Polychoke can handle steel shot while original Belgian barrels cannot. If the poly has a dealer number I'd keep my eyes open for another barrel rather than hack up an original.


November 21, 2008, 11:45 PM
Cool. Thanks Jeff. I never shoot steel anyway. Duck loads are always Bismuth.