Model: 37 Featherlight
Serial Number: 863416
Year of Manufacture: 1963 (https://ithacagun.com/serial-numbers/)
Gauge: 12 Gauge 2 3/4″ Chamber
Action Type: Pump / Slide Action, Tube Magazine Fed Shotgun
Markings: The left side of the barrel is marked “MODEL 37 – FEATHERLIGHT – 12 GA – 2 3/4 CHAMBER – PROOF TESTED / ITHACA GUN CO., INC., ITHACA, N.Y. – MADE IN U.S.A. – ROTO” with anvil, “FORGED”, “PROOF / TESTED” and “MOD.”, the right of the barrel has an inspection mark. The top-left of the barrel at the rear and top-left of the receiver at the front are each marked “P”. The right of the receiver is marked “U.S.” at the bottom-front and with the serial number at the bottom-rear. The bottom of the grip is stamped “24” and with boxed stars and eagle cartouche.
Barrel Length: The barrel has been cut to 20”.
Choke: Due to the cut, we would expect the barrel to be Cylinder Bore, but our gauge measures Modified. We suspect that the muzzle was constricted in the process of cutting.
Sights / Optics: There is a bead mounted to the front of the bayonet lug. The barrel is NOT drilled for a bead underneath.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The stocks are a two piece walnut set with grooved forend, pistol grip, straight comb, serrated black plastic Ithaca buttplate and sling swivel in the belly (the other swivel is mounted to the rear of the bayonet lug. The stocks have light handling wear with scattered light nicks, dings, scuffs and scratches, most in the buttstock. There are a few thin cracks and one small loss around the front edge of the wrist. The LOP measures 13 7/8″ from the front of the trigger to the back of the buttplate. The plate has scattered light-moderate wear scattered throughout. Overall, the stocks are in about Good-Very Good condition.
Type of Finish: Parkerized
Finish Originality: Refinished
Bore Condition: The bore is mostly bright. There appears to be some faint erosion. Some or all of this should prove to be stubborn fouling after a patient cleaning.
Overall Condition: This shotgun retains about 90% of its current metal finish. The finish is thinning lightly at most edges. Most of the balance in finish is in operational wear on the magazine tube and action bar. There are a few other scattered minor scuffs and scratches with a more notable scratch on the right receiver flat toward the rear. The screw heads range from sharp to lightly tool marked with strong slots. Most markings are clear, some of the barrel inspection markings are shallow or incomplete. Overall, this shotgun is in about Very Good condition as refinished.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The shotgun ejects out the bottom of the receiver. It can be slam-fired. We have not fired this shotgun. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: The installed 6-row, 29-hole Ithaca-style bayonet lug/handguard is included. Also included is a green canvas sling showing light wear with one spot of fraying on the edge.
Our Assessment: The Ithaca 37 enjoys a good reputation for its durability, ambidextrous ejection design, smooth action and of course for being one of few pump shotguns which can be “slam-fired”, meaning that with the trigger depressed, pushing the slide handle forward and locking the action will allow the chambered round to be fired without needing to reset the trigger. In addition to seeing use by bird and deer hunters for generations, the Model 37 has served in WWII, the Vietnam War and in countless law enforcement agencies across the country. This example is a Featherlight in the Trench-Gun style, with a 6-row ventilated handguard/bayonet lug installed. The assembly is proper for an Ithaca Trench-Gun though this example is outside the proper serial range for Vietnam-era military purchases. In any case, it has been beautifully restored and configured with a proper heat-shield which will accept a 1917 bayonet. A gun like this with a two-foot bayonet sticking off the end would probably put second thoughts in enemy soldiers! The gun is in Very Good condition as refinished with most of its new parkerized finish remaining, a bright bore, and great mechanics. This would be a great gun for an Ithaca collector or a military shotgun collector as a placeholder for an issued Trench-Gun. If the collectors don’t snap it up, it will still serve as a great defensive shotgun and host for an M1917 bayonet. Please see our photos and good luck!