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For all Sweet Sixteens from 1952 and later, the name "Sweet Sixteen" will be engraved on the left side of the receiver. Most made between 1948 - 1951 will also have the engraving, but not all. Sweets made before will not have the engraving. Sweet Sixteens were introduced as a Lightweight 16 guage gun in 1937. Prior to the German Occupation in Belgium, they were made up until April 1940, though few were shipped to Browning in 1940. The 16ga. in Standard and Lightweight (Sweet 16's) were manufactured again for Browning begining in 1946. To tell between the Sweet Sixteens and Standard 16's, there are a few ways to tell. The obvious difference is weight, but exact weight would be difficult to measure due to shorter cut stocks and barrel lengths, so to answer this question we will look at the physical characteristics. To begin, the triggers were gold plated on the Sweet 16's, however most of the older Sweet's had the plating wear off, thus the trigger on most older Sweets are a bare silver metal. Next. is the inside of the receiver which have two sections of metal removed on each side of the receiver (inside). The metal was removed to reduce weight. Each "scoop" of metal removed can be verified by looking into the bottom near the loading port below the carrier. The "scoops' or "dishes" of removed metal are about 1 1/2" long & 1/4" wide, running parallel with the receiver, just above the bottom edge. These are the two primary Sweet Sixteen characteristics that can be seen examining the gun without dissasembly. It is possible that the trigger could have been replaced when converting the old "Front Trigger Safety" to a cross bolt safety. The front trigger safety was used through the 1940's, and some owners had their guns safety converted; Thus the removed metal inside receivers is the determining factor to identify the receiver. Standard weight 16's do not have the scoops of metal removed. The final thing to look at is the barrel. If your 16ga Auto 5 is older than 1952 and does not have the script engraving on the side, you should also check the barrel: Remove the magazine cap while pressing the barrel rearward into the receiver (Yes, it is normal). Let the barrel slide forward and resting without the spring tension. Remove the forearm and look at the Barrel ring that slides around the magazine tube. Does the barrel ring have three holes drilled through it to reduce weight? If so, the barrel is a Sweet Sixteen barrel. Keep in mind that this does not make the gun a Sweet 16, unless the receiver is the lightweight model. Lightweight barrels or "Sweet16" barrels can be fitted to standard weight receivers. Fortunately, the earlier Auto 5's had their barrels serialized to match the receiver. Does you serial number on your lightweight barrel match the receiver? Also look at the inside of the forearm, the same number will be stamped into the forearm which will show if the barrel, receiver and forearm is original. Their have been some exceptions with serial numbers, but this was the standard configuration that Auto 5's were sold in. There are a few other details that reduced weight in the Sweet 16's such as more wood hollowed out in the buttstock and thinner barrel wall construction. So, take a look at your 16ga Auto 5. If the engraving on the left side says "Sweet Sixteen", then you will know. If it doesn't have the engraved script, then answer these questions: Is the trigger gold plated or silver and not rust blued? Can you see the area of removed metal inside the receiver instead of a flat inside wall? Does your barrel have three holes drilled through the barrel ring and does the serial numbers match? If you answered "yes!", then... "How Sweet it is".

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Q: How do you identify a sweet sixteen Browning automatic shotgun?
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