Mossberg serial number dating
These dates were gleaned primarily from Sauerfan's timeline and the Shirley/Vanderlinden book. Browning informed me the gun left the factory in 1955. Last shipped before the outbreak of WWI was SN 19642.1915 to 1918 No production due to German occupation of Belgium during WWI.1919: 19671- 205001920: 20501 - 222371921: 22238 - 240501922: 24051 – 260001923 Barrel Address (US market) BROWNING ARMS COMPANY OGDEN UTAH BROWNING’S PATENT26001 – 284001924: 28401 - 356501925: 35651 – 40010 (app.)1926: 40011 (app.) - 516001927: 51601 - 579001928: 57901 – 651001929 Ventilated barrel rib (as an option) and barrel address change to "Ogden Utah and St Louis Mo.Details about dates, transitions, exceptions, and other nuances can be found in the Shirley/Vanderlinden book, Browning Auto 5 Shotguns. 1909 1 - 32001910 to 1914 There is only vague info about 16 ga SNs in SV (page 74) for the time 1910 to 1914. "65101 – 827501930 Barrel Address (US market) BROWNING ARMS COMPANY ST LOUIS MO.
I decided to share it here since this is where much of my limited knowledge came from. Other factors need to be taken into consideration to properly date your gun.Browning’s bust between “TRADE” and “MARK”96144 – 995001935 99501 - 1035001936 The "Sweet Sixteen" was released but limited to a test market.103501 – 105850*1937* Introduction of the “Sweet Sixteen” sale to the public.Barrel Rib four possibilities in 1937: none, solid (hollow) rib, ventilated rib with X posts or matted finish for Sweet Sixteen (SV page 98) Barrel Ring as before or drilled with three holes on the barrels of Sweet Sixteen Safety Gold plated (Sweet Sixteen only) Trigger Gold plated (Sweet Sixteen only) Misc. No serial number distinction between the Sweet 16 and the Standard 16 gauge A5s.105850 – 111000 1938: 111001 – 1182001939: 118201 – 1261231940: 126124 – 126175****1940 – 1953**** "A" Prefix serial number on the side of the receiver, American made Browning by “Remington Arms.” 1944-1948 Post war Liberation guns, Serial number 128117-128646 "are so out of sequence there is no way to establish accurate production dates" S/V p76[b] 1944: 126201 1948: 1317381947 Post war Belgium made “X Prefix Series.” No serial number distinction between the Sweet 16 and the Standard 16 gauge A5.Just two years into the 1939-45 War, Britain was suffering a serious shortage of suitable training rifles. were already supplying much miltary materiél, and a request was made for a consignment of .22 rimfire rifles suitable for the purpose.With all local manufacturers committed to the far higher priority of Service arms production, there were simply not enough small calibre rifles to go round. The Mossberg Model 42 rifle was a sporting/target based design which offered an excellent basis on which minor modifications could comparatively easily be made to current production lines; the substitution of the three-quarter length stock with a full-length military style stock being the most significant and obvious.Local Defence Volunteer units ( latterly Home Guard) were utilising almost anything on which they could lay their hands, and such small-bore rifles as were in stock with gunsmiths or manufacturers were taken over by the War Office for distribution anywhere thay might be of value for economical trainig purposes. The initial contract, in June 1941, was for 10,000 rifles.
Previous to this date, Mossberg had used only a letter code on their production rather than serial numbers.
New choke codes replaced the choke words stamped on the barrels.
82751 – 905001931 90501 – 940001932 Introduction of the three shot Auto 3 with shorter magazine tube and shorter forearm marked “Browning 3 Shot” 94001 – 960721933 96073 – 961431934 Receiver legend Now with BROWNING and John M.
I compiled this quick reference serial number guide for dating 16ga Browning A5s and the Auto 5-3 Shot, by serial number.
A common mistake I have seen in many, many, gun shops and online sites is to assign the 12ga serial number date to a 16ga.
For shotguns with removeable barrels, the code will be valid for the manufacture of the barrel; maybe for the receiver, as barrels do get switched around.