Sold For: $1,127.88
Make: Savage Arms Corporation
Model: 1899B Standard Weight Rifle
Serial Number: 50708
Year of Manufacture: 1905
Caliber: .38-55 Winchester
Action Type: Lever Action Rifle with Internal Rotary Magazine
Markings: The left side of the barrel is marked “SAVAGE HIGH-PRESSURE STEEL / MODEL 1899”. The top of the barrel is marked “Manufactured By The Savage Arms Company Utica, N.Y. U.S.A. / PATENTED FEBRUARY 7.1893.JULY 25. 1893. OCTOBER 3.1899. / 38-55”. The underside of the receiver, forend, butt stock and butt plate all have the same serial number.
Barrel Length: The octagonal barrel is 26” in length.
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a Marble No. 2 beaded blade base that is dovetailed to the barrel. The rear barrel mounted sight is a “U” notched leaf and slide step elevator. The receiver is mounted with a vintage Lyman flip-up peep sight, which allows adjustment for windage and elevation, the underside is marked “SA”.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The stocks are smooth walnut with a varnished finish. The buttstock has the typical fish-belly seen in the early rifles, and features a straight grip with a steel crescent shaped buttplate. The forend has a Schnabel tip. The belly of the butt stock has large removed spots of wood at a previous swivel mount. There are several dark surface cracks at the wrist, the forend has heavy rubbing and a few deep dents. The wood to metal fit is retained well. The LOP measures 13” from the front of the trigger to the back of the steel buttplate. The buttplate shows surface loss, moderate wear at the toe and is sprinkled with spots of solid erosion and pinprick surface erosion. The buttplate is in about Good overall condition. The stocks rate in about Good Plus condition.
Type of Finish: The finish is blued steel, except for the lever, which is color case hardened.
Finish Originality: All Original
Bore Condition: The bore is light gray with highly defined rifling. There is extremely light erosion infrequently spotted near the muzzle and a few inches back.
Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 71% of its metal finish. The receiver has a silvered brown patina, with spots of light erosion, seen again on the lever, though with the lever opened, brilliant coloring is still visible. The barrel has heavy rubbing at the edges along with gouges and a few scrapes; spots of mild erosion are seen on the barrel (with heavier erosion towards the muzzle) and rear sight, the inside of the receiver still retains sharp edges. The majority of the screw slots have light tooling, a few are disfigured. The markings are clear. Overall, this rifle rates in about Very Good condition for its age.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. We did not fire this rifle. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: None
Our Assessment: The Savage 1899/99 model rifles have quite a history. They were preceded by the Model 1895, which was the first hammerless lever-action rifle produced. A hammerless action was useful as it reduces the lock time, and allows the rifle to be fired more accurately. It is also less likely to jam in brush or snag in clothing. The rotary magazine uses a spring-loaded spool with grooves to hold the cartridges and has a counter added to the spool to indicate how many rounds are loaded. This design allowed the use of spitzer bullets, which could not be used in the Winchester rifles of the times because the pointed tips could cause accidental discharge. This is a Savage Model 1899B made about 112 years ago, retaining a good deal of polished blue and case hardened coloring. The bore is still nice enough to reliably place .38-55 WCF rounds out to 300 yards; per https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.38-55_Winchester “The .38-55 Winchester cartridge (actually .3775 caliber) was introduced in 1876 by Ballard. It was used by Marlin Firearms from 1875 on for various single-shot target rifles and their 1893 lever action rifle. It was later offered by Winchester in its Model 1894. Winchester continued to use the round in various rifles until about 1940, and also used it in a few commemorative editions of rifles since then. In addition, Marlin offered it in some 336s and it was used in non-lever action rifles such as the Remington-Lee bolt-action and Colt’s New Lightning pump-action rifles. A modernized version of the cartridge debuted in 1978 as the .375 Winchester, designed with higher pressures and to be used in modern firearms only. It is not safe to fire factory .375 Win ammunition in rifles chambered in .38-55, especially in older examples. The brass is very similar (shorter by approx. 1 mm), but using modern, higher pressure .375 loads in an older rifle could cause serious injury to the shooter. The .38-55 is renowned for its exceptional accuracy at ranges up to 330 yd (300 m). It is often used to hunt black bear and deer at moderate ranges, and is also used in cowboy action shooting side matches”.