Winchester model 94 history.

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by 9rudy9, Mar 14, 2011.

  1. 9rudy9

    9rudy9 New Member

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    Hello Everyone. Is this where I would ask about the history of the Winchester 1894 rifles? I am seriously thinking of sending the info to the Cody Firearms museum for a data sheet just too cheap at this point.
    I am not concerned so much about price as much as what it is exactly I have.
    I would like to learn more about why some guns have round barrels and some have octagon and if this was specific for certain models / years etc..

    Is there some links or information where I could find information on pre 1900 model 94's. For example what makes it a carbine or a musket. I apologize for not sharing alot of details. Just curious where to find information.

    Thanks. Roy.
  2. polishshooter

    polishshooter Active Member

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    Roy, Welcome!

    Why don't you post pictures of it?

    We have a LOT of expert Winchester guys on here that will be able to ID it for you and give you an estimate, plus we also have a lot of other guys with the time on their hands who love to do valuable research for FREE, and all the rest of us even if we have nothing to contribute just like to drool over pics of nice guns, new or old, expensive or cheap, historical or not, whatever....:)
  3. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    Carbines vs. Rifles vs. Muskets is pretty easy, really.

    Rifle – usually has a barrel between 24 and 26 inches long, but that is not set in stone. Winchester would make the barrel whatever length you wanted. Want it shorter than normal? No problem, they’d cut it. Longer than normal? That cost extra – a dollar an inch, but they’d do it. The barrel can be round or octagonal, or even half round half octagonal. The forearm has a metal cap on the end of it, and the magazine is held to the barrel by a hanger that is dovetailed into the bottom of the barrel. The buttstock has a very deep curved butt, and the top and bottom of the curve are pointed. The grip can be either straight or curved (pistol grip) and the stock may or may not be checkered. Pistol grips and checkering cost more, but they were options.

    [​IMG]

    Carbine – usually has a barrel 20 inches long, but that is also not set in stone. Winchester made carbines with barrels down to 12 inches long. Barrel is always round, and has thinner walls than a rifle’s round barrel. The end of the forearm is bare, and the forearm is attached to the barrel by a barrel band. There is another band out near the front sight, holding the magazine to the barrel. The curve of the buttstock is much shallower, and the top and bottom of the curved are themselves gently curved, as opposed to the sharp points on a rifle butt. The stock always has a straight grip and is uncheckered. There is often, but not always, a ring stapled to the left side of the receiver. This is called a “saddle ring”, and the gun is called a “saddle ring carbine”. The rear sight on a carbine sucks. Rifles come with much better sights (that is my personal opinion, not a hard and fast fact).

    [​IMG]

    Musket – barrel was, I believe, 30 inches or more. The forearm came almost all the way to the muzzle (unlike the rifle and carbine, which had half the barrel and magazine exposed). Like the carbine, the forearm is secured by barrel bands. The musket has the carbine butt and the carbine lousy sights. It also has sling swivels.

    [​IMG]

    Flat buttplates, like on a modern gun, were optional on both rifles and carbines. This was referred to as a “shotgun butt”. They made what was called a “short rifle”, which had a barrel of 20 inches, like a carbine, but all the other features – buttplate, forend tip, barrel contour, magazine attachment – were the same as on a rifle.
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2011
  4. polishshooter

    polishshooter Active Member

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    See what I mean, Roy?:p

    THANKS, Alpo! While I could have looked it up, I enjoyed the read! AND I LOVE the "personal" insight we get here like the "crappy carbine sights!" And NICE pictures for us to drool over!

    The only Winchester lever actions I have personally fired were a pretty stock "K-mart" special in .30-30 my bro-in-law had, another even cheaper "Ranger" .30-30 model that I bought for a song from PO'd woman who bought it new for her new husband for Christmas but caught him screwing around on her and divorced him at Thanksgiving:eek::p:) but that I SOLD like a dumb@ss to somebody who offered me $50 more than I paid for it, and a SWEET, OLD, WELL WORN, which means SLICK 94 in .32 Win Special that a guy let me borrow for a pleasant afternoon of deer hunting in PA, I might have seen some deer even if I wasn't so busy admiring the RIFLE and wishing it was mine....:p


    I VOW to own a "Trapper" in .45LC SOON, crappy carbine sights not withstanding! LOL:)
  5. 9rudy9

    9rudy9 New Member

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    Hey folks, here's some photos. I think.

    Let me know what you think when you can spare a few minutes.

    Thanks. Roy.

    Attached Files:

  6. TUCO-the-ratt

    TUCO-the-ratt New Member

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    9rudy9,

    Had one almost identical to it 20 years ago. Can't make out your serial number but mine was in the 90k range and I was told that put it's date of manufacture around 1896. I shot my first few deer with it and then sold it for $500 to help pay for the baby. ****! Should have delivered the kid myself and kept the rifle. My guess is it's worth about $1,000 - $1,300 now'days.
  7. sschrad

    sschrad New Member

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    Looks like a model 1894 rifle made in 1896. Wish I had one
  8. jpmccr

    jpmccr New Member

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    I have two: one is a 25-35 (1914) and the other is a 30-30 (1949). I haven't shot them yet and maybe this year when I go down to my Mom's (she lives in the country of Va.). Love them both though. . . . .
  9. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    polishshooter, the question was about pre-1900 guns, and my comments were about them also. If you look at his gun, you'll see it's a rifle with a common rear sight - U notch, maybe a semi-buckhorn or even a full buckhorn, with an elevator (hard to really tell, his picture could be bigger :)). Common "open rear sight".

    Look at the picture of the carbine, though (we'll see if this blown-up, fuzzy picture helps any) and you'll see that it does not have an elevator. The rear blade has a tiny little notch, and for longer range the sight flips up, giving you a ladder. Crappy sight.

    [​IMG]

    They quit making that sight by, at least, WW2. So even if you buy a fairly new 94 carbine in 45 Colt, it will not have the crappy carbine sight on it. It will have the rifle sight.
  10. 9rudy9

    9rudy9 New Member

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    This may be a better shot of the rear sight. I always understood this to be a buckhorn sight. The rear one didn't seem as blurry when I would shoot this as a kid. Must be the metal is changing.

    Roy.

    Attached Files:

  11. TRAP55

    TRAP55 New Member

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    Your rifle was made 1898.
  12. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    This shows the difference between a buckhorn, a semi-buckhorn and a flat-top. See how the "horns" almost close together at the top on the full? Kinda hard to use, really, because it blocks out so much of what you are shooting, especially at longer ranges. The semi is much better, especially for quick shots. That appears to be what you have. For precise, the flat-top is the best.

    [​IMG]

    Here's a good shot of the carbine sight.

    [​IMG]

    And this shows you the great "shooter's view" of the carbine sight. Dinky little notch and all.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
  13. 9rudy9

    9rudy9 New Member

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    Thanks for the information everyone. This forum could be very addictiive. The pictures alone much less the information.

    I see there is a discrepancy in the year it was made. 1896-1898. Either way it is almost as old as I feel this morning.

    Is it a guarantee that the purchased manufacturers paperwork from the Cody firearms museum is 100% accurate?

    This is a family keepsake. My plan is to restore the rifle to like new. Get it documented and try to hand it down through the the kids for as long as possible. And someday one of my GGG grandkids will say this is a 230 year old rifle that my grampa Dale got in 1972. And it still shoots.

    As long as thats the plan when I go in the box anyway. Roy.
  14. TRAP55

    TRAP55 New Member

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    The 1898 date is from the original Winchester polishing room records. If you want something more exact than that, a Cody letter will tell you the month and day.
    Any attempt at restoring it, will destroy the value.
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2011
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