Baby browning .6mm35 (.25) with mysterious serial number. Help!
I have a Baby Browning .25 that I inherited from my grandfather. I am trying to decipher the age of the gun. I cannot find the serial number anywhere online; its starts with 165xxx on the gun but every list I have found generalizes 1-118,000 in the 1954-1958 category. I assume since mine starts with 165xxx then it must be in that range. Is there any way to figure out the exact year and value of this gun?
Also, it is unlike most of the ones I have seen online in that it has wood grips and not pearl.
Any help is appreciated.
Note: This is Belgium made and all pieces have the same makers mark.
Are you looking at US-sold serial numbers, but referencing a European-sold gun?
Maybe it's a WW2 battlefield pick-up.
Does it actually say "Browning" on it?
Does it have Belgian proof marks on it?
Does it have a Nazi Waffenamt stamp on it?
Can you provide pictures, particularly of all of the marks on it?
It looks pretty modern (stainless steel). It looks just like the stainless ones I am seeing all over the internet except with a smooth wood grip (no design, grooves etc.) instead of the mother of pearl grips.
Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1
On the left side of the slide it says "BROWNING ARMS COMPANY_ST. LOUIS MISSOURI", right under that it says "MADE IN BELGIUM".
The proof marks include what appears to me a standing monkey (2 arms, 2 legs, head and tail) with a line underneath it that says "P.V", then below that is a 5 pointed star and what appears to be a capital K (looks more like half H and half K).
On the muzzle there is what appears to be an upright egg with a crown on it and inside the egg are the letters E with LG right below it. Below those letters is a mark I can't make out without a magnifying glass...perhaps another star?
There is no Waffenamt Stamp.
Serial number is 165444. I didn't put the whole SN earlier because I had seen a few people do it like that but I've since seen a lot more put the whole number, so I assume its safe...don't know what it wouldn't be.
Through a lot of searching I have found similar proof marks on a Belgium gun here: Melior 1911
Thanks for your willingness to help! I look forward to hearing back!
I cannot figure out how to upload pictures so I have linked some here that include some of the marks I have described.
Here also is an image of exactly what my gun looks like except mine has smooth wood grips and the markings on this trigger guard are actually centered on the slide and directly above the trigger on my gun.
It does have the gold trigger.
Ed wrote an excellent piece on his Melior, which should be useful to you in decyphering your pistol's markings.
(BTW: Ed makes really nice holsters. I'm wearing one of them right now, as I type this.)
Note that the "standing monkey" is actually a lion, and represents the smokeless-powder proof.
Ed states that the star-and-initials within a circle is the mark of the inventor or designer. I have to assume that the "K" on your pistol has the same function, although I don't know who "K" was—but it is possible that it's someone other than a Browning employee.
The "egg" with "E/LG" and a star tells us that the gun was tested in the Leige, Belgium proof house, which would be correct for a Browning pistol.
You seem to have a Browning "Baby" Model, manufactured by Fabrique Nationale in Liege, but imported and sold by Browning in the US.
My references state that "over 500,000 of these [were] manufactured between 1931 and 1983." Therefore, the serial number on yours seems to be consistent with the gun's history.
Your pistol could be worth as much as $575.00, if it appears just about unused. Prices seem to range from there down to $200.00, if it shows lots of use and wear.
However, if your pistol is bright-nickle plated, with a gold-plated trigger, but it has wooden grips, the grips are probably replacements. That may reduce its value, as mother-of-pearl grips seem to have been standard on plated guns.
Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1
Thanks! I have no intention of ever selling it but have been quite perplexed as to its age and possible origin since its SN isn't listed and there are no others like it. You have given me great insight! I have other long arms I have inherited as well and will probably be posting here again.
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