Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 20
  1. #1
    Eagle
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Western NY
    Posts
    536

    Fox Sterlingworth - serial number/year

    I have just repatriated a 16ga. Fox Sterlingworth that, in a moment of outrageous weakness and stupidity, I sold to a friend and shooting companion. It's not the first time I've done this but this is one of the few occasions I've had the opportunity to reverse the process. It cost a little more but was a bargain. I got what I let slip away.
    It's a lovely late Utica gun and my question is: "What year was it made?".
    I have McIntosh's book but it doesn't give this info. I realize that I could pay for the information but my guess is that one of you has what I want.
    The serial number is: 376189.

  2. #2
    Eagle
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Sussex WI
    Posts
    259
    1939 or later....my guess would be a war years gun..
    gunut

  3. #3
    Eagle Crazy Horse 7/3's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    S.E. PA.
    Posts
    738
    Try scrolling done here.

    http://www.doublegunshop.com/dgsnos1.htm
    TOLERANCE is the virtue of a man without convictions.

  4. #4
    374800-1938, 378481- highest number, from Doublegunshop.com

  5. #5
    Eagle
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Western NY
    Posts
    536
    Thanks for the help. It looks like this was one of the last Sterlingworths. It's in great shape....traces of case color on the outside of the receiver, 90% on the inside, virtually all the case color on the FE metal, the barrels have at least 95% of the bluing with perfect bores. It has 28" bbls choked M-F?. The stock has been professionally redone with an Old English decelerator pad added. It needed both and it's what I wanted.
    I don't view these guns as heirlooms to begin with. If it were a grade gun, I might not have had the stock refinished and the pad added. It weighs 6 lbs., 10 oz.. What a shooter. I've been loading some 7/8 oz shells and plan to do shoot over the weekend.
    You can tell that this gun has not been shot. The firewall has practically no shell markings and the internal case color has faded but is all there. The only discernible wear is the case coloring on the outside of the receiver and, to a much lesser extent, the barrel bluing.
    Last edited by Tom28ga; January 2nd, 2012 at 03:33 PM.

  6. #6
    Eagle
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Endless Mountains of Pa
    Posts
    2,390
    Tom 28,
    Sounds like a real nice gun, congrat! Have fun this weekend with her.
    Pine Creek

  7. #7
    Eagle
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    WA/AK
    Posts
    390
    The only way to know for sure when your gun was made/shipped is to get a letter on it from the Savage historian --

    http://www.foxcollectors.com/factory_letters.htm

    Fox serial numbers are in blocks by gauge and whether Sterlingworth or graded gun --

    12-gauge Graded Guns -- 1 to 35280
    12-gauge Sterlingworths -- 50000 to 161556
    16-gauge Graded Guns -- 300000 to 303875
    16-gauge Sterlingworths -- 350000 to 378481
    20-gauge Graded Guns -- 200000 to 203974
    20-gauge Sterlingworths -- 250000 to 271304
    Single Barrel Trap Guns -- 400000 to 400568

    I have some real problems with the published Fox serial number chronology, which was originally put out in 1976 by Lightner Library.

    For 16-gauge Fox-Sterlingworths they are showing productionof 500 (1931), 600 (1932), 600 (1933), 700 (1934), 1100 (1935), 1500 (1936), 700(1937) and then 1600 for 1938. Then the serial numbers from 374800 to 378481 are given for 1939 up to the last gun made 8/9/1939. I don't believe there is any way they all of a sudden pumped out 3681 16-gauge Fox-Sterlingworths in eight or nine months!!! From my 20 or so years of recording serial numbers of observed Sterlingworths, guns in the 375,xxx, 376,xxx, 377,xxx and 378,xxx range certainly exist.

    On the 12-gauge Fox-Sterlingworths they estimate the highest serial number for 1937 as 145000, for 1938 as 150000 and for 1939 as 155000. Again from my years of observing and recording serial numbers, I haven't recorded a gun between 143802 and 160195, leading me to believe there were about 16000 serial numbers skipped. Perhaps the high 143xxx range was the end of regular production and the guns in the 160xxx and 161xxx range were cleanup of parts and barrels on hand?!? All of the guns I've recorded in that range are 26-inch barrels except one two-barrel set that also has a pair of 28-inch barrels.

    I use to own 376,196 but I never got a letter on it.

  8. #8
    Researcher, do you recall the flat-sided 16ga Sterlingworth I had? Very late gun, I'd have to check my records for the SN. There was some speculation that it might have started life as an SP but was then finished as a Sterlingworth. Engraving was Sterlingworth style, but the frame did not have the typical bosses seen on SW's. I remember we discussed it over on doublegunshop, and I think a photo of that gun appeared in Double Gun Journal.

  9. #9
    Eagle
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    WA/AK
    Posts
    390
    Larry,

    According to my tables of observed Sterlingworths the gun you had, that I first saw when George Korbel owned it, was 376996, the lowest serial number "flatside" 16-gauge Fox-Sterlingworth I've recorded. I currantly have five recorded from 376996 to 377119. I have quite a few 12-gauge "flatside" Fox-Sterlingworths recorded in the 132xxx range (with one regular frame right in the middle), one in the 138xxx range, and some right near the end in the 1613xx range.

    Dave

  10. #10
    Eagle
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Western NY
    Posts
    536
    The gun I have has a small oval on the barrels below the serial number with "SP" inside. I have no idea what the significance of this is. It does have the normal Sterlingworth receiver.
    It's hard to believe that a gun this old has had so little use. A shooting acquaintance came up to me several years ago with the gun and asked if I were willing to part with $700 for it. He had received the gun in lieu of $150 for work he had done for the widow of the previous owner. My guess is that it had been sitting in a closet for many decades. After a call to my resident Fox collector, I gave him the cash. It has been on an Adirondack vacation for the last couple of years and now its home to stay.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •