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FBI Remington Model 81

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I won a Remington model 81 at auction. Appears to be an FBI model...







It has the manufacturer and serial number "stacked" under the model information, which I understand is unique to the model 81's made for the FBI. It also has the Lyman 41 sight, is chambered in .30 Remington and has the "notches" cut in the barrel shroud.

Edited by Mustang51
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  • 2 weeks later...

Did the FBI guns have a rear barrel sight ???

Jim C


There are two types of FBI Model 81's...an "early" type and a "late" type. This is one of the oddities of this rifle...it appears to have both the features of the early and late FBI rifles.




The "early" type had the Lyman 41 sight, no rear barrel sight, a high front sight blade and the "Remington" logo and serial number moved over and "stacked" under the Model name ("Woodsmaster")






I have a "civilian", non-FBI Model 81 that displays the usual receiver markings...




You can see the difference. The FBI requested the change because the Lyman 41 sight covered the serial number when the markings were in the usual configuration. You can see that my new Model 81 has the receiver markings of the early FBI model and those markings are unique to the early FBI model.




The "late" type FBI model 81's had regular barrel mounted sights and the receiver markings were in the usual configuration.






The chief distinguishing feature of a late FBI model 81 and a non-FBI model 81 is grooves put in the barrel jacket that were used to induction braze the barrel jacket to the barrel jacket head. This apparently was done by request of the FBI because the barrel jacket head was being shot loose by heavy use. These grooves are unique to FBI model 81's.




If you look closely, you can see that my new Model 81 has these grooves...







I've learned that some of the early FBI model 81's did not have any holes for the rear barrel sight and some did have the rear barrel sight holes, covered by a Lyman sight blank.


It seems to me that there are several possibilities for my rifle...


One, it is an original "early type" FBI model 81 that someone later modified by adding the rear barrel sight, either by removing the rear sight blank and adding a sight, or by having the holes drilled and tapped. However, this would not explain the barrel shroud grooves of the later FBI model 81.


Alternatively...since the Model 81 was a "take down" type rifle and the barrel and fore end could be removed from the receiver, it seems possible that at some point in its life, some one at the FBI accidentally mated the barrel and fore end from a "late" FBI model 81 to the receiver of an early FBI model 81 and it was never corrected.


A third possibility is that at sometime in its FBI service the Bureau returned an early FBI model 81 to Remington to have the brazing done to update it to the later standard.

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  • 1 month later...

I finally brought home the rifle and got to look at it more closely.

The rifle displays characteristics of both the early model FBI model 81 ("stacked" model, manufacturer and serial number markings on the receiver, Lyman 41 sight) and the later FBI model 81 (grooves in the barrel jacket, standard rear sight, etc). One theory that I had was that since these are take down rifles, perhaps someone at the FBI had at one time mated a late barrel/forend to an early model receiver and no one had ever corrected it.

Well, scratch that theory...the barrel yoke bears the same serial number as the receiver...


So the mystery continues.

I also noted that the screws on the receiver have been staked. I've not seen that in any other Model 81...even the few FBI model 81's that I've seen

Can anyone identify the numbers stamped on the barrel yoke?

Finally, the barrel code seems to be "NNO". If I'm interpreting this correctly, that would indicate July, of 1944, which seems late for an early FBI model.

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81Police, a co-administrator over on the The Great Model 8 and 81 forum made an educated guess on the likely reason for the combination early and late features of my FBI model 81 and he makes a lot of sense.


Your barrel assembly is not original to the rifle. The hand stamped "16651" on the top of the jacket head was possibly done by the FBI. As you'll see there's another serial number stamped on the inside of the jacket head (placed by Remington)...22096. So...the barrel assembly of your rifle is still an authentic Model 81 FBI item, but it's a Late-Type or 2nd style assembly from another gun. The cool thing is that barrel assembly 22096 is one of only 4 known Late-Type/2nd style serial numbers recorded! Are you sure the date code isn't DNN?

Your rifle #16651 was probably manufactured sometime in 1941 and started out as a the "Early-Type" or 1st style FBI 81. The FBI had numerous issues with the 81 (which is why the Late-Type or 2nd style was transitioned). One primary issue was the loosening of the barrel jacket from the jacket head. My guess is that since your mis-matched Late-Type 81 barrel assembly was hand stamped on the jacket head, would indicate the FBI intentionally mismatched the rifle to resolve issues with the original #16651 barrel assembly.


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