The L.C. Smith Collectors Association
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Re: 20ga LC Smith 1911 OO grade R frame
The "R" after the serial number means that it has extractors rather than automatic ejectors. The suffix for the automatic ejector guns was "E". The use of the "R" was dropped after a few years - likely because if a serial number did not have an "E" it could be assumed to be an extractor gun.
Some have theorized that the "R" meant that it had a Curtis forearm release. This has been shown not to be accurate as many of the "R" guns do not have the Curtis release. The use of the "R" simply coincided with a portion of the time that the Curtis forend was used causing the confusion.