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I have an old Remington Model 788 in .308, with a surprisingly fine trigger. Could you please tell me about this rifle? Is it a collector’s item? What is it worth?
Remington produced the Model 788 from 1967 to 1983. It was made in short action only, and chambered for nine different cartridges. Depending on the cartridge, it came as a carbine model (18.5-inch barrel) or with a 22- or 24-inch barrel. Left-hand versions were made in 6mm Rem. and .308 Win. The stocks were uncheckered hardwood.
When the 788 was introduced as a lower-cost alternative to the Model 700, there was some skepticism about the rear-locking lug system. With its heavy, strong and rigid receiver, however, the 788 soon established a fine reputation for delivering excellent accuracy at a relatively moderate cost. The detachable magazine can be expensive to replace if lost, however, and it extends far enough to make carrying the rifle in the trail position a bit uncomfortable.
With so many new, value-priced rifles offering very good performance these days, there is less demand for used 788s as hunting rifles. Still, they are certainly good-quality, respected firearms. I know hunters who own far more expensive rifles, but still prefer the 788 for its accuracy and reliability. There is also getting to be some collector interest in 788s, with the more unusual cartridge chamberings—such as .30-30 Win., 7mm-08 Rem. and .44 Rem. Mag.—commanding a higher price. The .308 Win. is one of the more common chamberings, but for a hunting rifle, it’s probably the best choice. Your rifle appears to be in very good condition, with its value as a hunting/sporting rifle likely in the range of $350 to $450.