On Monday, I found myself downtown, with my Jeep in the shop and me wandering around looking to kill some time. Eventually I drifted into one of the local pawn shops, just looking to see what they had, and two guns caught my attention. The first one was a .22 rifle that I thought might suit a friend, and the second, spotted while looking that over, was a sad-looking Ithaca Model 37 12 gauge shotgun that was covered with rust and grime.
I shook my head as I looked the Ithaca over, and I thought that it was probably so far gone that I really wasn't interested even when the manager, who knows me, offered me his "best out-the-door" price, which would have been tempting if the gun wasn't such a basket-case.
The .22 looked like a deal though, so we engaged in a bit of dickering, and before I knew what happened, we'd struck a deal in which I wound up buying both of them as a package for a fair bit off of the combined total. I have so little willpower. Or maybe I just felt sorry for the Ithaca.
Anyway, I spent a good chunk of Monday night and Tuesday working on it, slowing and carefully removing the rust with 000 steel wool and lots of CLP. I managed to get the wood cleaned up pretty decently too with some polish, and when all was done, I was quite surprised to find that I had a pretty nice shotgun on my hands.
So here it is. And I'm kicking myself for not taking some "before" pictures, because it sure looked rough.
The shotgun is a Model 37 "Featherlight" with a 28in. fixed-choke barrel (modified) and a bead front sight. It's chambered for 2&3/4 in. shells only.
And here it is in my gun cabinet, centered between two other Ithaca 12 gauges.
a bit over two years ago. So Ithaca shotguns have a special place in my heart, and for that reason, there will probably always be room for one more in the gun cabinet.