Winchester 53 - "One of Twenty-Five Thousand"
Okay, so maybe the Winchester folks never used "One of Twenty-Five Thousand" to market the Model 53; the phrase is mine, given my understanding that the total production run of this model was under 25K. Perhaps the Model 53 would have sold better if it had had an aura of exclusivity.
Given yesterday's crash and burn on my model 1892 short rifle, I have no particular hope as to value of this very used Model 53 take-down, an obvious working gun. (I gravitate to firearms, antiques and antiquities that show their age and history.) Serial number 105XX; 25-20 WCF. The wood is pretty rough, including a small missing chunk on the back end of the forearm that shows in one of the pictures. The action works fine and the bore is about a six of ten.
What does interest me is the mottled, silvery patina of receiver, barrel and magazine tube. What's up with that? Did this Model 53 leave the factory unblued, or has some ne'er-do-well taken a Brillo pad to the metal? Or did any bluing simply fail to adhere over the past 80 years?
My ignorance of such things Winchester is notable, and I look to the group to wise me up. Thanks in advance. (And is there any value?)