How Do You Decode the Remington Date of Manufacture on the Gun Barrel?


Quick Answer

Between 1920 and 1999, Remington placed two or three character codes on the barrels of its firearms identifying the manufacture dates. The first character represents the month using the letters contained in the phrase "BLACKPOWDERX". The 12 letters in order correspond to the months of the year. The second letter, and third if it exists, indicates the year. Many sites and forums contain lists of these year codes and their corresponding years.

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Full Answer

As the requirement to engrave serial numbers on guns didn't begin until 1968, a firearm's age may be difficult or impossible to determine. Remington barrel codes obviate this problem by including date information within a code along the left side of the barrel. The first letter of the code is unique for the month, but the additional letter or letters do not uniquely specify the year.

Codes used initially started with the letter "L." which indicated 1920, and worked through the alphabet to "Z," indicating 1931. Remington skipped letters easily confused with numbers, such as "I," "O" and "Q," initially, using them only in later years. From 1932 to 1942, the company used the letters available from "A" to "L" then began using double letters "MM" through "ZZ" from 1943 to 1953. Beginning in 1954 and ending in 1999, only single letters from "A" to "Z" appeared in successive years. Many Remington enthusiast sites and forums contain full lists.

Remington offers a service for those owning or looking to purchase a Remington firearm to determine the manufacture date of one its guns. Its support department accepts calls and emails with the serial and model numbers and returns the date of manufacture. Other sites and services, such as Rem870.com, have code search features where a user can enter the two- or three-letter code from the barrel to get such information.

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