1893 Winchester RIFLE not shotgun?????

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by Jim88, Sep 21, 2009.

  1. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, well. I was younger and dumber then. I didn't know there was a difference in forends. Also the magazine hanger is too far forward, since it is centered for a 24" barrel.

    Live and learn.
  2. Jim88

    Jim88 New Member

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    Hi Ron, I will see what the records show. But I do believe that this rifle is untouched knowing my family. They were not the type to play switcheroo's with items. In other words make changes arbitrarily once purchased. I even have a couple of original "National" cash registers made around the 19 teens. These have the money keys from 1 cent, 2 cent, 3 cent, etc. and the highest key being $3.

    Let me know if you would like me to capture any more photos of specific areas? I can then post them.....:)
  3. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    Jim, there is no doubt in my mind that your gun is original, I was just trying to explain to you the letter thing and I wasn't insinuating for a second that your gun won't letter. As for pictures you have done a good job of making me drool enough.

    Ron
  4. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    Alpo, I received a PM today from a forum member who said that short rifle 94 takedowns (he has one) have regular length forearms but he said non takedowns have short forends. He has one of those as well. I asked him to post a couple of pictures of them, I hope he does.

    I don't know if it is proper to mention the members name who sent me the PM is the only reason I didn't.

    Ron
  5. TRAP55

    TRAP55 New Member

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    Jim, I see Bert H. has weighed in on your rifle, you'll get good advice from Bert. He's a good friend of mine, and spends all his spare time researching the records at Cody, and picking the brains of past Winchester employees. He has probably done more to correct the falsehoods from the Madis book, than any other Winchester collector too.
  6. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    Here are the pictures of a couple of early 94's that I promised Goody, they show the original scratches that I was referring too in my earlier post to his thread. Every very early 94's I have ever seen unless it was refinished had these scratches, some far more than others. I took several picture of different guns but most did not come out to good. Not that you can tell but photography has always escaped me.

    Ron

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Sep 26, 2009
  7. Jim88

    Jim88 New Member

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    Hi Ron, no problem :) I also used my fingernail around those couple of screws and it was dirt. There is no dishing. I don't think the receiver is case hardened like I thought, but all the other features has me wondering how many were made in this configuration. I hope CODY will not only letter my rifle with its special features, but also give me quantities made for the model. I still find it very strange that the rear shotgun style stock is not a pistol grip and has a brass disc without any engraving????
    Jim
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2009
  8. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    Jim, the letter will not provide you any information other than your particular gun. According to the Madis book there were less than 2,800 take-downs and less than 1,900 with checkering made. As for pistol grip there were less than 3,000 of them made, but if I had to guess your gun with a checkered straight grip is rarer than if it were a pistol grip as most of those were checkered.

    Ron
  9. Jim88

    Jim88 New Member

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    Thanks Ron for your help. Time will tell. I will wait until I get the CODY letter...:)
  10. Jim88

    Jim88 New Member

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    Ron, it looks like Winchester DID inlay plates for presentation rifles...See below:

    Left side of the buttstock is inlaid with a nickel oval plate 2" long x 1-1/4" wide inscribed "JOHN S. WOOFTER". Buttstock, under the buttplate, is stamped "1823", no indication of the context of this number. Also under the buttplate is a hole like a hole for buttplate with trap. Just above and to the left of this hole is a small recess with a small diameter steel pin with a fingernail notch that appears to be the retainer for the presentation plaque. Accompanied by a Cody Firearms Museum letter which identifies this rifle, as found, having been shipped Jan. 8, 1907, returned & repaired Aug. 29, 1911.

    http://www.artfact.com/auction-lot/rare-presentation-winchester-model-1894...-1-c-072b733301#
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2009
  11. Dave Kennedy

    Dave Kennedy New Member

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    All -

    I wanted to answer a couple of questions regarding the info folks have received from Cody - as referenced earlier in this thread.

    First - there was a complaint about the information on one gun:
    The image at that link is of a serial number search. This is the equivalent of the old "Yellow Sheet". The reason for the disclaimer at the top is that anyone can easily change the information on the sheet. Cody faxes it to you, you add 'XXX Checkered' in the stock info, you fax it to the buyer, and you clear an extra grand to the value.

    Second - the Factory Letters are just that - letters of how the gun is recorded as having left the factory. This is NOT a letter of verification or authentication, as some have claimed. This is information from the original handwritten factory ledgers transcribed onto computer and printed on paper with a special watermark (as of about 2-3 years ago). Cody does not look at the gun or pictures of the gun to make some sort of a determination. Cody looks at the record and only the record.

    If you have questions, please feel free to holler.

    Sincerely,
    Dave Kennedy
    Formerly the Robert Woodruff Curator of the Cody Firearms Museum
  12. Jim88

    Jim88 New Member

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    Thank you Dave for the clarification. I understand the difference. To my understanding it is like this:

    The CODY records show how any rifle left the factory, but does not indicate if any particular rifle still has original parts. Chances are good that if the records match the rifle’s current configuration the rifle is authentic but that is not to say that any rifle matching features in documentation is still original pieces. Verification would take an expert who examines the rifle in person. Just like a piece of Chip & Dale furniture…..It looks original, but is it?

    As for my rifle I am pretty certain it is original after speaking with many family members of how the rifle was taken care of for at least the past 80 years….:)
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2009
  13. Jim88

    Jim88 New Member

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    Ron, I do think the rifle was made in 1896 like you said and not 1898 like Bert has suggested. Since I found a link to rare Winchesters and the two model 1894 rifles (2nd & 3rd down) before and after S/N 50212 show more likely the rifle was made in 1896. See link below:


    http://www.rarewinchesters.com/gunroom/1894/model_94.shtml
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2009
  14. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    Jim, according to Madis serial numbers from 44360 to 76464 were made in 1896 and they made 32,104 of them that year.

    Ron
  15. Jim88

    Jim88 New Member

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    Sorry for getting back so late, anyway I got the official letter from Cody. Pretty much matches the rifle. No mention of who the rifle shipped too or where and the detail does not go so far as to mention the shotgun style stock. But, there is nothing in the letter to indicate anything different than what the rifle exhibits this day, so this is good! :)
  16. 1 Eyed Jack

    1 Eyed Jack New Member

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    Wow, that is a beautiful rifle you have there,
  17. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

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    Just a note on take down rifles. Please make sure that you retract the bolt before turning the barrel to take the rifle down, as it is possible to mess up the extractor and the barrel if the bolt is closed when the barrel and foreend are turned.

    Jim
  18. Jim88

    Jim88 New Member

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    First, thanks 1eyedJack! Jim, I have never fired or even disassembled this rifle. I leave it be, and only have put a slight coat of oil on the metal. I still am wondering though about this case hardening, even after I was told that this serial # is not on the list for it by someone on another forum. Don't remember the name. It looks different from a receiver where the bluing is just worn off. Especially around the front of the receiver where the barrel mates. The bluing on the barrel band is not worn in the same manner.

    Worn bluing on many rifles I have seen are more of a scuffy (sweeping) look, sometimes speckled (dotty) and not blotchy like this - as the only ways I can describe it...

    If you look at the pictures muddober supplied with a Winchester that has worn bluing of the receiver, you will notice that the underlying metal is a uniform gray. It does not have the swirling or patchy red/brown, blues or gray tones. In addition, the receiver of my rifle visually matches the pattern of the known case hardened lever and hammer in appearance.

    Since case hardened would have been a special order, then just maybe it was not included on that list that someone had referenced???

    I'm just not convinced yet that it is not case hardened. I hope there is a way to tell through an inspection.
  19. Buffalochip

    Buffalochip Member

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    I took the liberty of loading one of your earlier pics into Photoshop and messing with the contrast and brightness a bit. If that receiver and loading lever aren't casehardened, than I don't know what is. The hammer even seems to have some coloring. As you pointed out, the remainder of the gun metal is uniform in color and doesn't exhibit mottling due to age. I think some pics, taken outside without a flash and out of direct sunlight is all that is needed to conclude if it is casehardened or not. Now if that casehardening is original...
  20. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

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    Judging ONLY from the pictures posted by Jim88, that case coloring doesn't look right; it looks more like a blued receiver that has been rusted, then oiled. The lever and hammer appear to be color case hardened, which would be correct.

    Buffalo, any chance of seeing your Photoshop product?

    I believe the patent date "on the muzzle" is actually on the magazine tube latch; that is the last (and most common) of several tube latches used on the Model 1892 and 1894 so the tube could be pulled out to let the barrel turn without having to remove the magazine plug and drive out the retainer pin.

    Jim
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