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I would guess 1949
 

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Maddmax, I have a hard time believing any gun manufacturer would do what you said …. another classic gun myth.
Got that from a factory rep back in the mid 80's when he was at one of the LGS I was working at part time back then fixing peoples mistakes and problems (not sales). He bought us lunch and to prove his point (we had called his bluff), we stopped into a couple of the Discount Chain Stores that were still open and selling shotguns and rifles (at that time). He said that "particular popular" brand of shotgun that had a P before the serial number meant it was a parts gun and why it had quite a difference in price over our stores cost.

Now a days with new technology and the bean counters, I imagine if it doesn't fit or work right it just gets tossed in the scrap bin.

…. another classic gun myth ? I only know what I saw back then and it's not worth either one of us loosing any sleep over. Stay safe and have a wonderful day.
 

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Years ago, I think early 2000s I bought a 1H stainless/laminate in .375 from Gunbroker. Seller was a guy in CT who said his landlord was Bill Ruger and he sold Rugers that were all stanped with a * before the serial number as cosmetic blemishes. Anyway, the rifle shoots as well as any that I have and no issues since.

Anyone else have a * stamped Ruger?
 

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I find it very hard that Ruger would use non conforming parts, then label it with a p so that it would stand out. I would believe that would just open you up for a large law suit. Maybe, just maybe, after the number was roll marked they realized it was a duplicate and used a non capital D instead of capital when they stamped it with a hammer and die and had it upside down. A picture of the p would be nice though.
 

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If any gun ships from Ruger that is not 100 percent it's on Ruger. I don't know about this factory 2nd theory but if it's true that's a good way to go out of business. Is there any proof of this? I noticed too that some local chain stores lock the guns up so you can't work the action, store policy. I don't like that and that is why I go to my local Gun shop here in town. I'm not sure what to make of this.
 

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I think Cabelas buys Davidson's guaranteed guns when the end user sends them back for one reason or another. After Davidson's returns them to mfg for repair they have to sell them at less than new, thereby the word Seconds.

That would be a refurbished gun, not a second.
 

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One gunshop I used to frequent, now closed, had guns displayed in pegs w/ the peg into the muzzle, gun just hanging ere. As far as I was concerned they were all 'seconds or thirds."

The shop closed when the grandson, a felon, sold a gun to an ATF dude.
 

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factory seconds

Dropped into my Cabelas and saw they had a variety of new Ruger revolvers and semi's in their Gun Library, all marked as factory seconds. I might have missed something but have never seen a Ruger listed as such. For example, a GP100 4" stainless and the GP100 .22 were $599. But I'm not sure what makes them seconds? Scratch and dent?
Factory seconds has to be a poor choice of words for new Rugers with cosmetic issues worse than normal(which isn't that good). If I could pick up a new GP100 with a few scratches for a substantial savings, I would. Both my stainless Ruger revolvers(SP101,GP100) needed some sandpaper work to smooth out sloppy brush strokes anyway.
 
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