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Picked up an early 1893 today for a parts gun. It dates to 1894 according to the charts. 38-55 original black powder barrel that's been cut down to 18" and the bore is toast. I got it mainly for the wood which is decent and I might use it on one of my other 1893's. My question is about the small hole on the left side of the receiver. It's perfectly in line with the locating hole for the ejector and it's a threaded hole. My initial thought was it's been drilled and tapped for some reason but after looking at pictures of other early guns, I see the same hole. What was it's purpose and was there a plug screw in it originally?
SN 110520, if anyone has access to the data of how it was originally configured, I would appreciate the info! @cj57 馃槈
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Your rifle dates to 1894. A letter from the Cody Firearms Museum would give you the original configuration. The hole in the receiver is not standard. It was either drilled and tapped as a special order by the factory to mount a scope or, most likely, was done after the fact for the same purpose by a gunsmith. Receiver sights usually utilize two holes. Some old scope mounts had one base on the side of the receiver and the second one clamped to the barrel.
That's what I was thinking, until I found pictures of other 1893/94's with a single hole in the same spot. Factory or not, I'm curious what a single hole with such a small screw would have been used for. Receiver sights usually have 2.
 

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Here's a receiver shot of my two 1894's. No holes. The top one is a .38-40 from 1905 and the second one is a .32-20 from 1900. Both factory original.

View attachment 920165
I know later ones don't have it. I have other 1893's without it. But when I saw others with it, they all were 1893 or 94. Coincidence?
 

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I think I was typing this at the same time you replied above.
Here's what I'm speculating:

I did some digging and some looking. According to Morphy, there was a patent change August 1, 1893 that involved a new locking bolt and two-piece firing pin.
The Marlin Model 1889 was made from 1889-1899 and was the predecessor of the 1894. The Model 1889 has a pin in the receiver in the same place your screw hole is.
You mentioned that you had seen the "holes" in both 1894 and 1893 models. So I dug through mine. Both 1894's (pictured above) have no pin. Out of my 5 Model 1893's, I found one that had the pin. It was manufactured in 1894. It's the earliest one I have. Here's a picture of the receiver and pin.

Brown Wood Bumper Gas Automotive exterior


It is clearly a pin, and not a screw. < Edit: see post 19 below.
I also found an archived picture from Turnbull Restorations of a Model 1893 made in 1894 that had the same pin.
If the patent change was approved August 1, 1893, it would have taken time to be implemented into the manufacturing process. Marlin, like other manufacturer's, was not one to throw away parts. I'm speculating (because I'm neither a Marlin expert or a gunsmith) that the pin represents the pre-patent design and the receivers without the pin are post-patent implementation.
That would explain why early 1893's and 1894's have the pin and later one's do not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I think I was typing this at the same time you replied above.
Here's what I'm speculating:

I did some digging and some looking. According to Morphy, there was a patent change August 1,1893 that involved a new locking bolt and two-piece firing pin.
The Marlin Model 1889 was made from 1889-1899 and was the predecessor of the 1894. The Model 1889 has a pin in the receiver in the same place your screw hole is.
You mentioned that you had seen the "holes" in both 1894 and 1893 models. So I dug through mine. Both 1895's (pictured above) have no pin. Out of my 5 Model 1893's, I found one that had the pin. It was manufactured in 1894. It's the earliest one I have. Here's a picture of the receiver and pin.

View attachment 920167

It is clearly a pin, and not a screw.
I also found an archived picture from Turnbull Restorations of a Model 1893 made in 1894 that had the same pin.
If the patent change was approved August 1, 1893, it would have taken time to be implemented into the manufacturing process. I'm speculated (because I'm neither a Marlin expert or a gunsmith) that the pin represents the pre-patent design and the receivers without the pin are post-patent implementation.
That would explain why early 1893's and 1894's have the pin and later one's do not.
So why is yours tapped? Your rifle was refinished at some time. Its blued, not case hardened. Perhaps the pin was lost during that process and the gunsmith tapped the pin hole and placed a screw there instead.
That's the only thing I can come up with. This has made me look closer at my rifles and dig deep. If anyone can come with anything else, I'm all ears.
Here is 107060, posted here on this forum recently. In this post, OP was asking about it being a mystery model to him because the tang is not stamped. That is not uncommon on some early 1893's and that is a well known fact. When I saw this post originally I had never paid attention to the hole, until today when I picked up mine. As stated, I bought it as a parts gun due to its condition. The finish on it is not bluing. Someone gave it a Bubba facelift and spray painted it 馃ぃ.
I'm going to strip the paint and see what's underneath. Looking at the areas that are scratched off, it looks like a typical worn off finish.
Did I mention it has a hole on the side of the receiver?
Wood Tool Automotive exterior Auto part Metal
 

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On another note, M1, I'll be curious to know how the stock and forearm swap work out should you decide to do it. I'm not interested in knowing about the forearm as much as I am the stock. My understanding is that both Winchester's and Marlin's had forged receivers. The forging and polishing process created minute differences in the receiver and tang dimensions. For this reason, the stocks were hand fitted to each rifle. IIRC, the old Marlin's have the serial number stamped or written inside the stock. I've been told that, because of this, it's not always a simple matter to change out the wood from one rifle to another. Some fitting/filling may be required to get a nice result.
If you decide to do it, let us know how it works out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
It has been my experience that early stocks are marked with the serial number inside on most. I have also found some that are not but those could be old replacements because they all looked original to the gun. Swapping stocks around is hit or miss. I've done quite a lot of it and sometimes you get lucky, sometimes not. My worst fitting ones I've run across are late production guns, like 70's, 80's and up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Here's the Model 1893 made in 1894 pictured above. Pin hole and no tang markings.

View attachment 920172

I was wondering if that was paint, but I didn't want to be insulting! ;) Like you said, "It's a parts gun."
For $200, I figured the wood alone was worth it. Appreciate all your input and research !
 

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I have read about a second variation ejecter that was held in by a small screw from the inside. Don't know what s/n range has these, but it would explain why this one is threaded and the other ones look like a pin. A pin in that location is highly unlikely, but a screw from the inside would indeed look like a pin from the outside.

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I have read about a second variation ejecter that was held in by a small screw from the inside. Don't know what s/n range has these, but it would explain why this one is threaded and the other ones look like a pin. A pin in that location is highly unlikely, but a screw from the inside would indeed look like a pin from the outside.
This makes sense. I told y'all I wasn't a gunsmith! Thanks for this information. So between this and the Aug. 1, 1893 patent involving the locking bolt and firing pin, MAYBE we've figured something out.
I very rarely comment on questions like this because I inevitably show my lack of knowledge (a polite way to say ignorance) in these matters. ;) But I enjoyed the search and dialogue none the less.
 
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