View Full Version : Questions on IAC 1897 production

07-15-2008, 10:01 PM
This came on the for sale thread. When did the replica production start on the 1897?

Coyote Cap was instrumental in the latter production of the 1897 and started the 1887 production. The following is from his posting on the SASS wire (Cowboy Action Shooting) I have edited only to keep to the specifics as to production dates and numbers...you can view the original thread in it's entirty there...

"Knowing what generation of Chinese built shotgun can be frustrating to say the least.

The reason I state this is because when I sent in recommended changes to a preceeding "batch" (or shipment of 1,600 shotguns to Interstate Arms), in an effort to improve the quality and reliablity of these shotguns for Interstate Arms Corp; the changes were made sometimes right in the middle of production, and therefore, one would have to know the serial number of the first gun in those major generational changes.

(example): 998XXXX (1998/1999), 000XXXX (2000), 010XXXX (2001), 020XXXX (2002), 030XXXX (2003) and 040XXXX (2004). All these numbers tell you is what year the frame was cast, milled and serial numbered.

A 1st and 2nd. generation, yes, but subsequent generational changes were so numerous, that they were lumped together right in the middle of production, and this started in 2001 with serial numbers starting 010XXXX (7 digits), and continued until 0103200 (approx) as the 3rd. generation of modifications and improvements.

The 4th generation started just after those numbers and included (among other things) a major change to American Walnut stocks from Missouri.

So, if you have a serial number in the 0104500 range, it will have pretty nice walnut stocks, an upgraded carrier (at the cam pivot circle), an improved left extractor and a narrower, lightened firing pin (to prevent breakage from dry firing).

The 5th generation is far easier to identify because the pistol grip on the walnut buttstocks was changed to the (E) model flat (not rounded) design of the original (E) model Winchester 97.

Also, all "Trench Guns" are of the 5th generation and are actually pretty good guns, as the metallurgical tolerances were much more closely watched, and also, these guns had some more internal changes, to include another change to the firing pin, (to make it safer), and upgrade to the ejector, right extractor and an improved and much lighter and thinner mainspring."

I hope this helps for those interested in these neat toys!