Picked up this classic today

Picked up this classic today

This is a discussion on Picked up this classic today within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Was over at a buddies today and his neighbor stopped by to chat for a little bit. We of course chatted about guns and he ...

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  1. #1
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    Picked up this classic today

    Was over at a buddies today and his neighbor stopped by to chat for a little bit. We of course chatted about guns and he mentioned he was looking to "sell an old rifle". Once I saw it, I knew I had to have it. I am a fan of lever action rifles (grew up watching Chuck on The Rifleman) with the octagon barrel, plus quality of this aged beauty suckered me in. However, I was shocked at the price he gave as it was quite a bit lower than I expected. I did not do any research before hand, but felt pretty comfortable hitting the bank and returning to claim my prize.

    Once home I spent some time admiring the rifle and feeling pretty proud at my purchase. Then I got to searching the net to see if I could estimate it's fair value and it really does seem all over the map. Any help would be appreciated! I don't want to sell it, just want to know more about what I got.

    Looking at the serial #, I'm confident it was made in 1911. Barrel length is 26" and caliber is .30WCF. If what I have read online is correct, that is .30-30?

    The barrel looks immaculate inside with nice rifling. All parts/screws look original and the finish is a natural aged look. Thoughts?
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  2. #2
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    Sorry,

    Winchester Model 1894
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    VIP Member Array Badey's Avatar
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    That is a beauty! I'm jealous!
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    Wow! That is SWEET! Wish I could stumble across a great deal on one like that!

    ...And yes, it's a .30-30.
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    Jim
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    Nice photos and the subject of those photos is among the kinds of firearms I like looking at most of all. Love pre-war Winchesters.

    You're gun looks honest Injun to me. Saw a lot of loving use over the years with perhaps some small neglect of surface care at some point. Could have just been used in all weather. Barrel blue still looks to be holding up beneath some surface dirt or very minor oxidation. Barrel surfaces on Winchesters generally retained blue longer than the receivers so that is to be expected. Wood looks to be a pleasing walnut with wood/metal fit still factory fresh rather than gap-y or shrunken. Wood's a bit "proud," that is standing up a bit higher than the adjacent metal surfaces ... just like Winchester built them for so many years.

    Nothing at all really wrong with that Winchester rifle.

    You did say the bore was immaculate. Extra points if it's still shiny bright. Not likely to be so, the ammunition of the day all featured corrosive primers which ate up bores and was difficult to "kill" and the bullet jackets were cupro-nickel in composition which was prone to bad fouling. If it's a little less than perfect but with good sharp rifling and no deep pitting then it'll still shoot really well though will foul badly. Nothing a good cleaning can't overcome though. Winchesters have always shot really well in my limited experience unless the bores looked like a plowed field and were completely shot. Winchester triggers back then were always nice and crisp which aided grouping from the benchrest. Several pre-war (some pre-1900) Winchesters live around here and several more did in the past and they all have had uniformly good factory triggers.

    It's a take-down model! I've always wanted one example of a Winchester lever gun with the take-down feature. Never as popular as the solid-frame variants, the take-down was once appreciated by some sportsmen. Accessory cases were made for them and one could take the rifle down and carry it in a case, handily and unobtrusively on the transportation of the day, be it horse, bicycle, flivver, trolley, bus, train, or steamship. Not too much call for passenger airline travel in 1911. Supposedly not as accurate as the solid-frame guns, it will still give useful accuracy for as far as big game needs to be taken with cartridge and sighting equipment provided.

    Please don't try harsh cleaning methods. Just a wipe down, metal and wood surfaces alike with Hoppe's No. 9 HOPPE'S No. 9 | Brownells would freshen it up a bit. A little secret. Keeping RIG RIG® UNIVERSAL GUN GREASE | Brownells on the metal surfaces (only) as a preservative will have the added benefit of improving the look of the patina on the surfaces. If there is any active rust then it needs to be stopped. Soaking rust patches in Kroil Penetrating-Lubricating Oils / KROIL | Brownells and then very gentle scrubbing with bronze brushes or a Chore-boy Chore Boy - Ultimate Scrubbers, Pure Copper (never steel brushes or sandpaper!) will remove active rust. Never ever scrub until bright metal is showing. Collectors will gag and the gun won't be worth as much. Better just to keep RIG on the receiver with no real scrubbing at all except if there is any evil active rust patches. The receiver will turn silvery if its delicate patina is scrubbed off. Your rifle has a warm and attractive appearance just as it is. All that is really needed is to maintain it.

    Shoot it, hunt with it, by all means! That gun's better made and more cleverly designed than most of the second rate stuff being produced today. It's just another one of John Browing's famous designs, sturdy enough to last a few more generations from this point in time with only a modicum of care.

    Value? Probably $1100 -$1400 would be realistic in most markets nationwide, perhaps more in some locales.
    Charter Member of the DC .41 LC Society "Get heeled! No really"

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    Bmac - you're the man.
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    bmcgilvray, fantastic response!!

    I am very appreciative of shared knowledge and experience. It's folks like you and responses like that that keep me interested in DC.

    Thanks again for your thoughts!
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    Except for the takedown that's the most common Winchester. It was the first repeater to use smokeless, and became THE hunting rifle (especially in the West). Condition is everything, and that one looks pretty nice, but it's hard to tell from the pix. There are a lot of them out there, but fewer takedowns, and I'd say that adds at least a C note if not two. If the bore is cherry and it's a shooter that'll add some too. 26" is the long one (I don't know, but I would assume more takedowns were offered in the longer lengths). I think 20" is the common one. The longer ones are the more desirable ones for me, but some of that depends on the taste of the collector. I'm gona say an even grand would be fair unless the pictures don't show corrosion or damage to the wood that is present. I would not cry if I overpaid a little for that piece, but anything under 700, and I'd say you stole it.

    I love (old) Winchesters, and still hunt with an '04 in .32Win spcl that has been in the family since new. It's a tack driver.
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  10. #10
    OD*
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    Beautiful old Winchester, congratulations!

    I would suggest two books to buy, The Winchester Book by George Madis, and The Winchester Model 94: The First 100 Years by Robert C. Renneberg.
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    Most likely I guess that this rifle was used for hunting, but I can't help getting lost in my imagination at what has been seen down the sights of this rifle.

    I'm not ashamed to admit I feel like a kid again wishing I had an old rope sling, a backyard tree to jump out of, and a good set of knees!
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    Aw guys, it's a trade out's all it is. I learn most of what I know about modern guns and thought from y'all and chime in on the oldies stuff for y'all.

    And yeah, Jaeger's right. The take-down feature that wasn't as popular back in the day adds interest and value to the gun now.
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    Charter Member of the DC .41 LC Society "Get heeled! No really"

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  13. #13
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    What a beauty! I love old guns too, you done good!

    These fellows here helped me ID some older guns - real helpful! Thank you Mr. bmcgilray and Mr. Jaeger
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    VIP Member Array PAcanis's Avatar
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    Nice rifle!
    Takedowns in these parts in that condition are $1800 at the shops.

  15. #15
    Distinguished Member Array Nmuskier's Avatar
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    Very nice rifle!

    It seems everyone wants to clean up the wood, since that is an easy DIY job. I would say do not touch it!. The natural aging is part of the value. Just keep it oiled.
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