1938B, air rifles, antiques, bb guns, Carbines, Collector, Daisy, Lever Action, Red Ryder, Rifles, Vintage

Red Ryder Christmas Dream 1938B

img_5698The story on this carbine is hilarious and typical of Hollywood. It’s yet another cult of celebrity tie in. I have not seen it but the gun commemorates the movie “A Christmas Story” from 1983. The signature line of the movie became commonplace even if you didn’t see the movie. “Ralphie: No! No! I want an Official Red Ryder Carbine-Action Two-Hundred-Shot Range Model Air Rifle! Santa Claus: You’ll shoot your eye out, kid.”

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The Red Ryder never came with a sundial or a compass. That was a feature on the 1934 No.107 Buck Jones Special. Also the Red Ryder logo was put on the right side of the stock because the actor was left handed.

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This 2018 Model 1938B “A Christmas Dream” is a 35th Anniversary 1983 repro LE #0639 of 2500 made. The first one I got from Daisy died after a couple months or so. Lucky they were happy to replace it with an even lower serial number. Supposedly the guns are assembled in Rogers Arkansas but the parts are from “overseas”.

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Regardless of where the parts are made and that the lever, trigger and front sight are plastic – the gun is a great shooter. Hitting out at 50 yards all day long. Super quiet and plenty of power to lob the bb where it needs to go. The hi tech ability to navigate and tell time with the gun using solar energy is an awesomely stylish mod. Firearms manufacturers haven’t even caught up with that level of badass!

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Of course we’d all like to see this gun with a blued barrel, cast iron lever and an old school loading port. But the wood quality is good unlike their Chinese pressboard stocks and fore grips. Who knows the faux wood may last forever but I’m glad they went with real wood on this model. Although the new style loading port negates having a copper band front sight they did include a copper barrel band. Nice touch.

I think the Rogers factory is more geared toward custom stocks and commemorative reissues. Perhaps someday they will bring manufacturing back to the US. If they do I’m sure the prices will come way up on their new and vintage guns.

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The Red Ryder 1938B Model

CaliAir talks about the peculiarly named “1938” Red Ryder and compares it to the Model 40’s that preceded it. Daisy perhaps by way of space time travel reissued the non existent 1938 Model in 1972 and then again in the 80’s. The original “1938 Model” from 1972 was almost identical to the 1952 Model 40 no.111.

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Today’s featured gun is the 1988 50th Anniversary Commemorative 1938B. It seems the letter “B” is used to nomenclate a reissue. The current Buck no.105B lever action youth gun uses this identification as well. This leaves us with a slight perplexity. The original No.105 Junior Buck from 1933 was a pump action not a lever action gun. In fact the 1933 No.105 was really just the Markham designed No.5 pump gun rebranded.

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Perhaps someone over at Daisy can enlighten us on the peculiar model naming conventions that were used.

This particular carbine is a good shooter. It’s quiet and still hits hard. It has moderate wear and hasn’t seen much abuse. It survived the 80’s better than a lot of folks I know.

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I have Daisy guns from the 1940’s that have painted barrels. By the 1950’s/60’s Daisy started painting most of their barrels. The blueing, nickel and chrome plated guns have their charm but few have escaped the ravages of rust. The painted guns do have the unique advantage of resisting rust.

My best guess thus far is the”1938B” date is significant because it was the date when the Red Ryder started being designed. Licensing was acquired 1939 and sales and marketing began in 1940. That is – sold until 1942 as WWII progressed. The cast iron lever 1st variant Model 40 is easy to spot with it’s cooper sight and barrel bands. These features were gone when production resumed in 1946.

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