Winchester 53 - "One of Twenty-Five Thousand"

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by Downriver, Jun 24, 2011.

  1. Downriver

    Downriver New Member

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    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?)

    Attached Files:

  2. Bert H.

    Bert H. Member

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    With the complete serial number, I can determine the exact date it was manufactured.

    Unfortunately, it is not in any better condition than the Model 1892 "Short" Rifle.

    It was completely blued when it left the factory... somebody used something harsh on it more than once, and destroyed the finish.

    Total production of the Model 53 was just a tad over 15,000.

    Bert H.
  3. Downriver

    Downriver New Member

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    Bert H. - yeah, that's what I suspected about the finish. Why, oh why, would somebody do such a thing to their own rifle? (Would it be preparatory to a reblue job that never happened?)

    And again, back on the wall it goes. Despite it's very obvious flaws, I like the mechanical aspect of it being a take-down and will continue to enjoy it on display.

    I was just following the convention regarding serial numbers. It's 10508.
  4. wonderwhippet

    wonderwhippet Active Member

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    Old guns pass through many hands. After all, we are never the owners of these guns, only the temporary custodians, and some of us are barbarians when it comes to finely built tools and machinery, never taking care of them, modifying them in a rough and careless way to meet some silly imagined improvement which exists only in the mind. Unfortunately, this gun has been in the hands of at least one, and probably several of these individuals who have no respect for mechanical beauty.
  5. Bert H.

    Bert H. Member

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    April 12th, 1927 is the date of manufacture.

    Is the bottom of the barrel stamped "27" inside the take down extension ring?

    Bert H.
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