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Old November 2, 2008, 08:53 PM   #1
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Ithaca / BPS question

I have an Ithaca M37 & a Browning BPS. The receiver on the Browning is at least an inch longer than than Ithaca's. I realize the BPS has a 3" chamber but don't understand the reason for the additional extra length. Were the NEW Ithaca's chamber's 3" ? Thanks
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Old November 2, 2008, 10:23 PM   #2
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Not sure, but I think all Model 37s were 2 3/4" chambers. The nearly identical Model 87 has 3" chambers. I said think, because I don't know for sure that there were no 3" 37s. The BPS was introduced in 1977, long after 3" chambers became common.

Last edited by TxGun; November 2, 2008 at 11:26 PM.
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Old November 5, 2008, 01:04 AM   #3
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I grew up using the M37 and loved it. I got rid of it in a moment of lust toward a 3" chambered BPS. Recently bought a M37 20 ga for trap and upland birds.

I believe there were a few years when the old Ithaca company made the M37 chambered for 3 inchers, but am not 100% certain of that. Also, I would guess that the reason for the extended receiver is due to the different locking mechanisms and needing to beef it up a little more for the hotter loads.

Either way, the M37 is tough to beat as an upland pump gun. Lightweight and strong. Only complaints I ever had about them were the 2 3/4" chamber and fixed chokes.
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Old November 6, 2008, 07:35 PM   #4
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I believe there were a few years when the old Ithaca company made the M37 chambered for 3 inchers, but am not 100% certain of that.
Stick man, you are 100% right- I know because I used to own one. Bought it new back in the late seventies. Also, because both the BPS and the 37/87 are bottom ejectors, a lot of people wrongly believe the two guns have identical actions. There are significant mechanical differences between them. I own both and, even though the lock-ups and other features are different, I would hesitate saying one is better than the other.
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Old November 7, 2008, 07:36 AM   #5
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The new 37's have 3" chambers.
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Old November 9, 2008, 01:43 PM   #6
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The receiver of most modern-design shotguns are excessively long for the shell length. One of the hallmarks of J.M.B.'s genius is COMPACTNESS.

A look at the 1897 pump, Auto-5, Stevens 520/620, and Remington 17 (and its heir, the Ithaca 37) receivers show quite short receivers. It's actually amazing, considering the size of the behemoth-class tube (shell) moving around in there!

On a side note, the 1911 is another example; it's practically shrink-wrapped steel around the .45 ACP cartridge form. Or the 1894 lever...despite having compound leverage via an extra lever (the link) compared to the modern Marlin 336, it's more compact in every dimension than the aforesaid Marlin!

As dludwig noted, the BPS and 37 only share having bottom ejection.

New 37s are 3" chambered. And, they're still in production via the Ohio-based new Ithaca.
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