Winchester model 1886 45-90 caliber

This is a discussion on Winchester model 1886 45-90 caliber within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Hey guys I have my great grandpas Winchester model 1886 chambered in 45-90 with a SN of 420xx what can you guys tell me about ...

Results 1 to 10 of 10
Like Tree21Likes
  • 4 Post By lokin4deer
  • 3 Post By OldVet
  • 4 Post By HotGuns
  • 7 Post By bmcgilvray
  • 1 Post By BigJon10125
  • 1 Post By HotGuns
  • 1 Post By grouse

Thread: Winchester model 1886 45-90 caliber

  1. #1
    Member Array lokin4deer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Arnold, MO. USA
    Posts
    76

    Winchester model 1886 45-90 caliber

    Hey guys I have my great grandpas Winchester model 1886 chambered in 45-90 with a SN of 420xx what can you guys tell me about it DOB value really anything? Also do they still make shells for it? Thanks for any help!!

  2. Remove Ads

  3. #2
    VIP Member
    Array OldVet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    S. Florida, north of the Miami mess, south of the Mouse trap
    Posts
    14,598
    Possibly for black powder loads only and I'm sure cases are available for reloading, BUT I'd have it checked out by a competent gunsmith before shooting. Ammo is available thru some of the specialty ammo makers or here:

    45-90 WCF | Rifle Ammo | Ammo.
    Retired USAF E-8. Avatar is OldVet from days long gone. Oh, to be young again.
    Paranoia strikes deep, into your heart it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid... "For What It's Worth" Buffalo Springfield

  4. #3
    Senior Moderator
    Array HotGuns's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Arkansas
    Posts
    14,631
    Oh heck yeah!

    Excellent rifle. Post pics of it and we can tell you more.

    It'll be at least 500 bucks if its beat up and can be lots, lots more. Typical examples on GunBroker bring around 2500.
    The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it...- George Orwell

    AR. CHL Instr. 07/02 FFL
    Like custom guns and stuff? Check this out...
    http://bobbailey1959.wordpress.com/

  5. #4
    Moderator
    Array bmcgilvray's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    9,415
    OOOooo...yes! We'd love photos.

    Thanks for posting!

    You got a deer-killin' daddy right there in that Model '86!

    With that serial number range mentioned, the rifle was produced in 1890. This is according to the George Madis "The Winchester Book."

    The Winchester Model 1886 is a very robust John Browning design, heavily made and with a strong locking system at the rear of the bolt (note the double locking bolts). It was designed at the tail end of the black powder cartridge era and black powder was the only fuel the rifle would have been used to in 1890, however it is also said that, probably by accident, Browning over-designed the Model 1886 to the point that it is suitable for use with smokeless powder loads. I have some 50 year old loading manuals that actually give a series of heavier .45-70 smokeless handloads with a published warning that they are not to be used in Trapdoor Springfields but only in the .45-70 chambered Model 1886.

    Your rifle shouldn't be abused at this point with really heavy handloads but it will handle reasonable smokeless loads with aplomb. Another little secret about the Model 1886s found chambered for the .45-90 cartridge is that they will feed, function, and shoot factory .45-70 ammunition with perfect satisfaction. Think shooting the .38 Special cartridge in the .357 Magnum revolver for a comparison. The .45-90 cartridge case is dimensionally equivalent to the .45-70 cartridge case but only longer.

    It wouldn't hurt to have a gunsmith check the rifle for excessive headspace but I doubt it has any problem. A quick, down and dirty test is to simply close the lever, lower the hammer, holding the trigger back as if it had just been pressed, simultaneously pressing down on the rear of the bolt (be sure the rifle is not loaded). If the bolt is loose enough that one detects a slight rocking motion then it may need attention. One could get away with firing factory .45-70 ammunition in it for quite a while if the rear bolt movement was minimal but it'd be best to have it seen to. HotGuns likely knows more about the Winchester Model 1886 and its scaled down but duplicate designed little brother, the Winchester Model 1892. Both are some grand classic American lever action iron that anyone would be proud to have in a rifle menagerie.

    Despite the rifle's suitability for use with the .45-70 cartridge, avail yourself to get a few boxes of proper .45-90 ammunition for full shooting satisfaction. When shooting .45-90 ammunition be careful of cartridge overall length. Some custom makers have, in the past, turned out ammunition that is too long to feed properly. Overall length is apparently critical to insure proper feeding from magazine tube to chamber. I handload both the .45-70 and .45-90 for the Model 1886 .45-90 that lives around here, an 1887-made rifle. It's a first rate shooter with a fine bore that will turn in 2 1/2-inch groups off the bench rest at 100 yards if I am able to do my best with it. It won't however do this with 90 grains of black powder behind a 300 grain cast bullet; a handload similar to the original factory loading. About 6-inches at 100 yards is all we've ever gotten, probably due to fouling. I've not spent any time at it to determine if black powder .45-90 loads can be tuned. I just "punt" and load with smokeless.

    The black powder .45-90 load is deer killin' accurate though for woods hunting to about 100 yards. I shot a buck with my '86 .45-90 using the prepared black powder .45-90 handloads and the 300 grain cast lead bullet. Muzzle velocity for such a load is a little over 1500 fps from my rifle. There's just not enough deer on the hoof to stop a .45-90 bullet. I shot the buck end on, facing me, and the bullet struck the center of his chest and exited out through his left ham. Despite the through-and-through hit, one could "eat all the way to the bullet hole" as there was no wasted, blood-shot meat and guts weren't exploded all over the place such as would have occurred with a modern high-velocity rifle. The hole was as neatly cut as if done with a small cookie cutter.

    We'll stick up a couple of photos of a Winchester Model 1886 .45-90 for until we can see lokin4deer's new '86 acquisition.



    Deep in the heart of Coke County Texas some years ago. No deer but only a turkey was collected on this jaunt as I recall. A turkey is a non-even for a .45 caliber bullet.
    HotGuns, OD*, gasmitty and 4 others like this.
    “No possible rapidity of fire can atone for habitual carelessness of aim with the first shot.”

    Theodore Roosevelt, The Wilderness Hunter, 1893

  6. #5
    VIP Member Array BigJon10125's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    California
    Posts
    2,961
    Pics please! Quite a round that bad boy will throw down range
    lokin4deer likes this.
    BigJon


    "Better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than to open it and remove all doubt" ~ Mark Twain

  7. #6
    Senior Moderator
    Array HotGuns's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Arkansas
    Posts
    14,631
    Every time I see that lever action 45-90 it makes me want one.

    Winchester produced a limited run of brand new 1886's a few years ago that can be seen on GunBroker occasionally.
    I haven't ruled out owning one yet since I have everything I need to reload for the 45-90.

    And..what's not to love about a big bore lever action?
    lokin4deer likes this.
    The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it...- George Orwell

    AR. CHL Instr. 07/02 FFL
    Like custom guns and stuff? Check this out...
    http://bobbailey1959.wordpress.com/

  8. #7
    Distinguished Member Array grouse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    kansas
    Posts
    1,802
    WoW! Nice rifle!
    lokin4deer likes this.

  9. #8
    Member Array lokin4deer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Arnold, MO. USA
    Posts
    76
    Thanks guys for all the info I will try and get some pics tomorrow.

  10. #9
    Moderator
    Array gasmitty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Gilbert, AZ
    Posts
    9,532
    The minute I opened up this thread I hoped Bryan would add some narrative, and I wasn't disappointed!

    OP, that's quite an heirloom you have, and I hope some stories came along with the gun. And Bryan, great info, as ever!
    Smitty
    NRA Endowment Member

  11. #10
    OD*
    OD* is offline
    Moderator
    Array OD*'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Coopersville
    Posts
    10,251
    Quote Originally Posted by HotGuns View Post
    Winchester produced a limited run of brand new 1886's a few years ago that can be seen on GunBroker occasionally.
    Personally, I'd look for one of the Browning 1886s, Winchester had Miroku add a tang safety to their rendition.
    "The pistol, learn it well, carry it always ..." ~ Jeff Cooper

    "Diligentia Vis Celeritas"

Links

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Search tags for this page

.45 90 winchester

,

.45-90 cartridge length in 1886

,
1886 winchester
,

45-90

,
45-90 caliber
,
do they still make a 45/90
,
modern 45-90 loads in 1886 reproductions
,
winchester 1886 cal.45-90
,
winchester 45 70
,

winchester 45 op

,
winchester 45/90
,
winchester model 86
Click on a term to search for related topics.