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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello
Here is an old photo of my Marlin Model-1898 12 Ga. Shotgun.

This was bought by my Dad in 1940 from a local farmer. He used it before going into the USN during the War and after that into the 1950's. He stopped hunting in the 50's for various reasons well before I was born. It was cleaned, taken apart and put away in the attic above our garage. Forward to 1986 when I was 15 and I bugged him to dig it out. He ended up giving it to me. I think the last time it was fired would have been 1987-ish

My Dad passed away at 91 last week,so I have been cleaning it up over the past few days. Just getting the surface rust off with "Kroil". Over all, structurally it seems to be in decent shape. The bore is nice and shinny, no actual rust on the outside other than the minor surface rust which most of came off. There is still some actual bluing left!!!

Now I've heard that these are not to shoot safely with modern ammo? I've been checking out a link with safety checks and there are issues to be addressed. One, I think the secondary sear is broken?, as the hammer will go forward when the slide is moved forward. Also the "Hang Fire Safety" is broken. Also the Cartridge Stop in the frame is "sprung" and blocks the shell carrier from coming down, thus tying up the action. That just needs to be changed, no big deal.

I'd love to get this into "safe to fire with light loads" condition sooner or later, that is the goal. I did a check on the serial number a few years back and it turns out this gun was made in 1902.
Thanks
Mark

 

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Very nice shotgun, and a nice family connection. You were wise to research the safety checks, as the gun was known as the widow maker for the reason you mention. Parts are available for this shotgun, and it could be put back in service. If a competent gunsmith does the work, personally I would use the shotgun with target and standard field loads, but would opt to stay away from any 2 3/4 inch load above 3 1/4 dram equivalent or hi speed/magnum loads as you suggest.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yes, I've heard the "Windowmaker" moniker before...years after I fired it as a teenager LOL! When I do get this "up and running" I plan on using "Low Recoil/Low Noise" loads. I don't have a "need" for a shotgun persay, but I'd love to get this in working order. If I still lived in Alaska, I'd be looking for a Rem. 870 or Mossberg 500 with slug barrel for peace of mind from Brown Bears, but here in the lower 48...having this shotgun in working order is just a nice thing to have LOL.
I have found a source for a replacement Mainspring for about $11. I might be placing an ad here for a Shell Stop, but need to get finances in order first.
Thanks
Mark
 
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