Your right Bruce, the 1st variant IS hard to find. I found one last year. The stock was in rough shape and it didn't hold air. The o-ringed check valve o-ring simple crumbled off when I took it apart. Here's the gun with stock refinished and resealed internals. It's back to its rabbit busting, squirrel terminating, original self! I've left the fingertip cocking knob out all the way, for Rossco, to show how it is before you cock it for the next shot (push in with fingertip or thumb, if you don't you just pump air out the muzzle).
Just some observations on my part: for Rossco:
Some people claim there are really four variants as opposed to only three with the third having two of it's own variations. I don't know, minor point I suppose if you consider the word "variant" meaning "variation" or a change from before.
I've also noticed the first three variants had an aluminum, knurled, thumb-tightening knob to hold the stock on. The last (4th) variant had a blued, open end, acorn nut with hex sides. Guess they figured people shouldn't need to take the stock off in the field, without tools. I suppose that nut could be easily replaced with just about anything if you lost it so I guess that doesn't tell you much about which variant you have. But I would suspect most nuts are original since you couldn't use the gun without it so probably few were ever lost, hence they're probably original. At least that's my observation so far.
I think this is the way they layout:
1st variant = spoon handle - aluminum breech - fingertip recocking, mfg. 1954
2nd variant = spoon handle - aluminum breech, auto recocking, mfg. 1955-1957
3rd variant = without spoon handle, steel breech, mfg. 1956-1962
4th variant = without spoon handle, die cast trigger housing, mfg. 1961-1968
I'm sure others who are more knowledgeable than me can elaborate further. I believe these were also made for Sears, Montgomery Wards and maybe others. Some guys here have seen variant #2 in two different stock styles, and #3 in at least three different stock styles, and #4 in both the slim line stock and the earlier bulkier style. I think it was also mentioned that Sears had a couple of different styles of stocks IIRC.
And of course as Crosman phased out the 140 for the 1400 they used up their parts bin so you can find a mix of these parts as well.
I'm sure if I'm mistaken anywhere here that I'll be corrected. No offense taken. I'm no authority.......on anything!
Hope that helps, Rossco.
Oh ya, and one other thing, just for fun. I've notice that most people have the cross-block safety (on the first three variants) installed backwards. I rarely see one with it installed as per the original Crosman diagrams. If you use the safety, (and I realize some don't believe in them and simply remove/disable them), I would suspect you would want to take the safety "off" with your trigger finger just before you pull the trigger. In that case the "off" direction should be from right to left. Most I see are installed the other way around although it works in either direction. I can understand that installation though if you're a lefty, otherwise who knows? Another minor point. Ha!
I wonder how many guys out there have a Cr140 - 1st variant? I'd like to know. Anybody?