This is a mint condition and all original Springfield Armory Model 1884 Trapdoor Rifle. The serial number on this rifle is 355496, which places its date of manufacture to mid-1886. Springfield Armory produced only 34,162 service rifles in 1886 and very few Model 1884 Rifles. The Model 1884, which was the second model of the .45-70 trapdoor service rifles, was only manufactured at Springfield Armory from late 1886-1890.
The Barrel on this Rifle is in very fine condition. The barrel is 32.60” long with a 0.730” barrel diameter at the muzzle. The barrel retains the vast majority of its original blued finish throughout with a few wear spots on the top of the barrel. The left, rear side of the barrel has the serif “V” view proof stamp over the serif “P” firing proof stamp over the eagle head over the second serif “P” firing proof stamp, indicating proof firing with a special 80 grain cartridge of the assembled barrel, receiver, and breech block. The top of the barrel has a serif “A” barrel inspector’s stamp and another, a serif “R” on the left side adjacent to the receiver. The bottom of the barrel, just forward of the receiver, has the “ ˜/P/y ” stamp. The bore of the rifle is in very good plus condition with a shiny bore, strong rifling, and intermittent frosting along its length. The chamber is in very good plus condition and remains very bright. The Breech Plug and Tang both retain the majority of their original color case-hardened finish. The rear face of the tang has a “2” stamp. The Tang Screw is the correct single-slot type and is unmarred, and it retains the vast majority of its original blued finish.
The Front Sight Stud remains tightly brazed to the barrel. The Front Sight Blade is the correct Fourth Type with rounded top rear that was used from August 1887 until the end of production. The Front Sight Blade is still tightly pinned into the stud, and it and the base retain the majority of their original blued finish with wear on the sharp edges.
The Rear Sight is a mint condition and correct Model 1884 Rifle Sight, also known as the Buffington Rear Sight. This particular sight is the Second Variation. The sight is graduated to 2,000 yards with the leaf marked in 25-yard increments from 200 to 1,400 yards on the right and in 50-yard increments from 15,00 to 2,000 yards on the left. The top right portion of the leaf has the correct serif “R” for rifle stamp. The open “buckhorn” sight is on the slide, which was used for rolling fire set at 266 yards. The top of the slide has the second open sight, which is a “u” shaped aperture. The bottom of the arrow shaped opening at the bottom of the slide is the third “u” shaped open aperture. There are two closed apertures, one at the top and one at the bottom. Both arrow lines, (on the right for the right-side range markings; and the angled line on the left for the left-side range markings) are still visible. Both the original Windage Knob and Binding Knob are present, and both retain all of their original blued finish. The single-slot base screw is present and is unmarred. The rear sight base, leaf, extension, and spring all retain virtually all of the original blued finish.
The Lower Band is the correct Model 1885 Lower Band with the dish at the top to accommodate the Model 1884 Rear Sight. The Band is correctly marked with the serif “U” stamp, and it retains 98% of its original, bright blued finish with some staining on the sides. The Lower Band Spring retains the majority of its original blue finish. The Upper Band is the correct Model 1874 Rifle Upper Barrel Band with the larger “U” stamp, which was incorporated in 1879. The Band retains 98% of its original blued finish throughout. Both the sling and stacking swivels are present and both retain the vast majority of their original blued finish. The Front Band Spring retains the majority of its original blued finish and both bands remain solidly on the stock.
The Breech Block is a mint condition Seventh Type that is crisply marked “U.S./MODEL/1884,” adjacent to the hinge point. The Breech Block retains 99% of the original and still vivid color case-hardened finish throughout. The breech face is very clean.
The Cam Latch is the correct Third Type with the unground rivet properly exposed leaving the square-shanked rivet visible. The Cam Latch retains 98% of its original blue finish with wear noted on the sharp edges. The Cam Latch works perfectly, and the breech block is very tight when in battery with no movement noticed. The original firing pin is present with a still sharp, pronounced striker end.
The Receiver is the correct .45-70 type with gas ports milled into both the left and right sides. The chamber area is in mint condition and retains virtually all of its original dark, oil quenched finish. The rear of the Receiver has the full serial number “355496,” with no wear over the last “6” digit, indicating this rifle was rarely, if ever, used after it was manufactured. The bottom of the receiver has serif “F” and “V” stamps, italicized “II” stamp, and a star stamp. The Receiver retains 99% of its original oil quenched finish.
The Lock Plate is the correct Third Type with the large shield on the eagle. Both the eagle and the serif “U.S./SPRINGFIELD” stampings remain clear. The lock plate exterior retains all of its original oil case-hardened finish. The Hammer is the correct Third Type with beveled lip. The cross hatching on the thumb piece is still crisply cut. The Hammer retains virtually all of its original oil case-hardened finish as does the Hammer Screw, which is the correct single slot type. Both original lock plate screws are present, and both are in fine condition, retaining the majority of their original finish.
The Trigger Guard is the correct two-piece type used up until the Model 1888 Rifle with the single-piece design was adopted. The Trigger Guard Plate is the correct Model 1863 pattern with rounded pads, which was used almost exclusively on Model 1884 production. The Trigger Guard Bow is the correct Model 1863 pattern that is somewhat unique in that it was threaded for a screw, which is how the lower sling swivel is attached. The Trigger Guard Plate, Bow and Sling Swivel all retain the vast majority of their original blue finish, which was introduced on furniture at Springfield in 1885 and it exhibits only very minor scattered scratches. Both single-slot wood screws are present. The Trigger is the correct Second Type with longitudinal grooves and an angled tip that points to the bottom of the guard with cross-hatched grooves. The Trigger retains the majority of its original oil case-hardened finish. The trigger release is still crisp.
The Stock is the original Model 1873 Rifle Stock. On the left stock flat is the correct, clipped corner, boxed, script “SWP/1886,” cartouche of Springfield Master Armorer Samuel W. Porter, who held this position at Springfield from 1879-1894. The cartouche is still very crisp and visible. The bottom of the stock wrist has the correct circle, script “P” firing proof stamp and a serif “F” inspection stamp. The stock exhibits numerous minor dings and scratches, but there are no cracks or chips noted. The stock retains its original oil finish.
The Nose Cap is still solidly in place, and it retains the vast majority of its original blued finish with wear noted on the front face. The nose cap screw retains 100% of its original finish and the slot is unmarred. The correct Model 1877 Rifle Butt Plate is present, and the tang retains 95% of its original blued finish, which has a few streaks in the finish. The tang is stamped with the serif “U.S.” stamp. The back side of the butt plate also retains the majority of its original blue finish with several streaks in the finish. Both original convex, single-slot butt plate screws are present, and both are unmarred. The original ramrod retainer and plate both retain virtually all of their original blued finish. The stock carries the correct Model 1878 Rifle Ramrod, Second Type, with cupped end. The ramrod retains 100% plus of the original blued finish throughout, and it still attaches securely when stowed. All of the original finger cannelures at the other end of the ramrod remain crisply machined.
This is a truly beautiful rifle that appears to have never been issued after it was manufactured at Springfield Armory. This rifle still functions perfectly.