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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber (Read 6936 times)
tornadobelt
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1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Mar 23rd, 2018 at 9:03pm
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I have an 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 rim fire. 7 o'clock extractor, "Favorite" indicated only on the butt plate, no visible serial number, no caliber markings, but it does chamber the .32. de Haas indicates in his chapter on the Favorites that he had never seen an 1889 in .32 but assumed they existed. Mine is in excellent original condition, seems to have been very little used.  I fired 3 rounds of Canuck .32 rim fire, and all three spent cartridges would not extract. Had to tap them out with a cleaning rod. My questions: How scarce is it? What might be a value range? Thanks.
  
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slumlord44
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #1 - Mar 23rd, 2018 at 11:40pm
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The fact that it has no serial # or caliber marking leads me to believe that it could be an employe built gun never made for sale. Any other opinions here? Possibly built from parts by an employee.  While Stevens made some models without caliber markings I don't recall ever seeing a Favorite un marked.
  
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tornadobelt
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #2 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 7:43am
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Sorta like a Johnny Cash Cadillac?
de Haas pp. 105-106 says "There were no caliber markings anywhere on the rifle. One specimen had no serial number, while others had this number stamped on the lower tang. The only other markings were on the hard rubber butt plate which has the words Stevens Favorite imprinted across it." Mine has this in 2 lines.

de Haas also describes on the top flat of the barrel, in 3 lines: J. Stevens A. & T. Co. / Chicopee Falls, Mass. / Pat. Oct 29 89  Mine has this in 2 lines, bracketed by "bow ties."

He further says, "Specimens of the early Stevens Favorites are quite rare, and although I have not seen one in the .32 rimfire caliber I would assume they were also made in that caliber."
  
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Redsetter
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #3 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 8:49am
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Odd that deHass hadn't seen one in .32RF, as it was a standard catalogued option even into the late '20s.  Odd also that a gun that's seen "little use" should have an extraction problem--which supports slumlord's conjecture about its origin.

Very earliest Favorites had a steel plate, so this hard-rubber plate suggests assembly sometime after about 1900, if I remember Grant's dating correctly.  Does the rcvr. have a "square-cut" profile, which was the earliest design, or a radiused one?  This difference is very obvious, but if you've never seen one of the "square-cuts," it might be difficult to visualize, and there's no photo of it in deHass.
  
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tornadobelt
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #4 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 10:10am
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Well, Redsetter, de Haas clearly indicates in his description of the 1889s, the earliest Favorites, a "hard rubber" butt plate. As for the extraction issue, the brass swells and gets stuck - I wondered if the Canuck [1950s-60s] ammo might be a bit "hotter" than the 19th century ammo, or some other issue with it. I know, for example, that modern 7mm Mauser ammo is slightly different than the 18th century version. It allows a bit of blow back when fired in, for example, my 1901 Remington rolling block.

As to "little used" in my neck of the woods, farm country, most of these old guns have in the past put a lot of rabbits on the table, and taken a lot of varmits. When they show up they are often quite beat up and worn out.The one I own, not so much.

As to the profile: I looked at a number of images on the web and found some I think are what you refer to - flat surface behind the hammer? These were 1915 models. Mine is curved, top and bottom.
  
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tornadobelt
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #5 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 10:15am
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And - my receiver is case colored.
  
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Redsetter
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #6 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 10:40am
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tornadobelt wrote on Mar 24th, 2018 at 10:10am:
Well, Redsetter, de Haas clearly indicates in his description of the 1889s, the earliest Favorites, a "hard rubber" butt plate.


He was mistaken about that.

Quote:
As for the extraction issue, the brass swells and gets stuck - I wondered if the Canuck [1950s-60s] ammo might be a bit "hotter" than the 19th century ammo, or some other issue with it.


Maybe, but I've shot plenty of Canuck .32s without extraction problems.

Quote:
As to the profile: I looked at a number of images on the web and found some I think are what you refer to - flat surface behind the hammer? These were 1915 models. Mine is curved, top and bottom.


No, not the 1915 model.  Hard to describe, but when the first variation rcvrs are looked at from the side, the bottom of the barrel shank is clearly visible.
  
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tornadobelt
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #7 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 12:32pm
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Complicated stuff  Shocked

Hmmm! Grant in More Single-Shot ... p.44 quotes Allyn Tedman with reference to the 1894 model, saying: "The Favorite ...always sported a rubber shotgun butt plate.

Thanks for your responses.  I think I will spend some more time reading Grant.  I have all four vols. {Interestingly enough, the 3 later vols. are all inscribed by Grant to Ernest Munkachy - they came out of a Colorado auction a few years ago - Munkachy contributed a couple of photos at pp. 12-13 of Single-Shot ... Finale. I think the same Ernest Munkachy that was the agent for the Huron Valley Gun Collectors Club in Michigan. d. in Colorado.

  
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Redsetter
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #8 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 12:44pm
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tornadobelt wrote on Mar 24th, 2018 at 12:32pm:
I think I will spend some more time reading Grant.  I have all four vols. 


Excellent!  Look at photo B, p. 11, Boys' SS Rifles.
  
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Redsetter
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #9 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 1:16pm
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tornadobelt wrote on Mar 24th, 2018 at 12:32pm:
Grant in More Single-Shot ... p.44 quotes Allyn Tedman with reference to the 1894 model, saying: "The Favorite ...always sported a rubber shotgun butt plate.


Tedmon is my supreme favorite among gun-writers, and I believe I have copies of everything he ever wrote, but nobody knows everything, including me!  Therefor, I hate to contradict him, but Grant did just that on p. 7, 3rd paragraph from the bottom, Boys' SS Rifles.
  
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frnkeore
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #10 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 1:22pm
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To know what Redsetter was talking about the early square cut, Favorites, look up pictures of the Stevens 107 or 108. They are the 44's early, "square cut" frames and will mirror the Favorite.

Frank
  

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uscra112
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #11 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 2:16pm
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For what it's worth I have one with the square cutaway, but it has the 1894 patent date on the barrel.  Shoots .32 Long RF.  s/n 568xx.   Stamped steel buttplate. 



  
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #12 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 3:19pm
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uscra112 wrote on Mar 24th, 2018 at 2:16pm:
For what it's worth I have one with the square cutaway, but it has the 1894 patent date on the barrel.


Appears there was some overlap in use of barrels with the '89 date even after the '94 date began to be used--merely the common practice of continuing to use older parts even after newer ones were in production. Gun in question is a case in point--not an early production rcvr, but has the early production barrel.  Even less surprising if it was put together outside of a normal production run.
  
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tornadobelt
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #13 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 9:14pm
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Thanks for the responses. Just now posted 4 images in the Rifle Photos forum. Maybe that will help regarding some of the issues
  
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uscra112
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Re: 1889 Stevens Favorite in .32 caliber
Reply #14 - Mar 24th, 2018 at 9:50pm
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Hmmm.   That's definitely not a "square cutout" receiver, but something later.   Could you post a picture of the barrel rollstamp? 

One my early style receivers:

  
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