Short Actions L461 Serial Numbering

Discussion in 'Sako Short Actions' started by blackjack, Jul 10, 2020.

  1. blackjack

    blackjack Well-Known Member

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    Good Morning Ladies & Gentlemen,
    I have a head scratcher here. My friend David purchased his L461 .222 Rem. Serial Number 92317 " Bofors Steel " from Thomas Bland. Gun & Rifle Makers, in London during 1970.The Sako L461 was brand new with tangent rear barrel sight, and recentley David found that the Rifle came out of production during February 1969. Now this rifle has a push button magazine release latch. My L461 .222 Rem. Serial Number 92657 came out of production during 1967, I do not know the exact month. My rifle has the " Bofors Steel " logo and tangent rear barrel sight, but interestingly enough has the ' S ' type trigger guard magazine release! Now my rifle has a later Serial Number, David's rifle is 340 numbers less than mine. So why is it that David's rifle has the push button latch and not the ' S ' type latch? Does anyone know when the push button latch replaced the 'S' type latch? I thought that the " Bofors Steel " logo was discontinued during 1968, and yet David's rifle came out of production in February 1969, can anyone explain? It would be good to know.
    Blackjack

     
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  2. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    Mike: There's a quite simple answer.

    Sako, as we all know, didn't use their serial numbers sequentially, so a higher number can be older than a lower number. Second, Sako used up their obsolete parts even after a newer configuration of that part has been introduced. Thus, the earlier "s" floorplate release may be found on a rifle which is newer than one with the push-button release. The push-button started to supplant the "s" around 1969 or so.

    The Bofors Steel mark was dropped sometime in 1968 -- but we've found plenty of Bofors barrels on rifles made in 1969. Sako simply used their parts as they pulled them from the bin and sometimes an "s" floorplate or a Bofors barrel was near the bottom with newer parts on top.

    A potentially confusing factor is that sometimes floorplates, stocks, and even barrels get swapped out between rifles by owners for various reasons (damaged stock, damaged barrel, etc.) Something totally incongruous could be due to someone using a salvaged part from another rifle like a flat bolt knob on an early L579 might be coupled with a push-button floorplate even though those two features were a decade apart
     
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  3. deergoose

    deergoose Sako-addicted

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    I know of a confirmed Sako with Bofors stamping from 1971. NIB rifle with paperwork, but unfortunately not my rifle.

    Yes, what Stonecreek said. You can also mix in grip caps, medium heavy barrels, the lack of Bofors stamping on rifles with grip caps, tang styles, etc.......all of this created a period from 1968 to 1970 (1971 in my example) where produced rifles made for extreme Sakoitis for us collectors.

    The other Sakoitis period is with the L57/L579 rifles from the late '50s to the early '60s.

    DeerGoose
     
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  4. blackjack

    blackjack Well-Known Member

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    Thank you Steve & Deergoose for enlightening me.
    Blackjack
     
  5. L61R

    L61R SCC President Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    And to add a little more info, Sako only made rifles to order at that time, or almost only made rifles to order. So they didn’t have a warehouse full of rifles with various calibers but put them together when orders came in.

    Sometimes you can see that the Factory Records ledgers state that a rifle went to ”varasto” or warehouse after inspection so no rule without exception.

    Just another tiny bit of Sako knowledge.

    Jim
     
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