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Old March 10, 2010, 10:46 AM   #1
econrecon
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Model 1894 Winchester 30-30 made in 1896

A relative has just found this in storage in very good condition for 114 years. The wood forestock is well-used, polished and worn from use, and the wood butt has a metal plate that matches the receiver which would lead me to believe the fore stock and butt are original. The barrel which measures 19" from the breech and has the words "Nickel steel barrel especially for smokeless powder" stamped on the side, and the receiver carries a 6-digit serial number which from a search of records found at this point on line indicates its year of manufacture to be 1896.

The top of the barrel reads "Manufactured by the Winchester Repeating Arms Co. New Haven, Conn."











The action could stand to be cleaned and oiled, but its in outstanding condition, it moves and cylces beautifully. Its a shorter barreled rifle, 19" as it was reportedly designed to be kept in a sheath or scabbard on horse back. The overall length is about 38" as you can see from the photo with the scale below the rifle.

So, I was asked to check into the value of this piece, and I thought I'd ask here as to suggestions of its value, and I'll continue to make enquiries. As it is, I'm encouraging them to keep this firearm as an heirloom piece.

Many thanks,

Chris

Last edited by econrecon; March 10, 2010 at 01:04 PM.
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Old March 10, 2010, 11:56 AM   #2
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It is definitely in rough shape. In that condition (rusted, roll-marked receiver, cracked and stained wood), you are probably looking at $750-$850, and that because any pre-1900 receiver is worth that much.
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Old March 10, 2010, 12:28 PM   #3
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Appreciate the feedback, also continue PMs with any other info, but not for sale at this time, thanks.

Thanks,

C

Last edited by econrecon; March 10, 2010 at 03:57 PM.
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Old March 10, 2010, 02:29 PM   #4
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Post over at the Rifle forum at www.winchestercollector.org/forum. Take pictures of the sights, barrel markings, serial number and any other areas of the gun that are in particularly good or particularly bad condition. The guys over there are really friendly and and extraordinarily knowledgeable. Plus they like to see old Winchesters!
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Old March 10, 2010, 03:55 PM   #5
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the old girl has seen better days thats for sure, that conditions fairly rough in fact its extremely rough if the bore of the gun is anything like the outside of the barrel, but good thing the receivers in good shape.

Il agree the value floats around 700 bucks maybe a tick more because its such an early model.
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Old March 10, 2010, 03:58 PM   #6
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Thanks Hardcase
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Old March 10, 2010, 08:27 PM   #7
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I would have to disagree with an above value. I have collected and studied Winchester 1894's for 30+ years. The old carbine has some issues that collectors stay away from. The overall condition is only fair. The barrel has been shortened and both front and rear sights have been changed. The wood has been refinished and the forend appears to be 1950's vintage. The magazine has been shortened and swivels installed. The inscription on the left side is also a value reducer. HOWEVER if this old cabine could talk could you imagine the stories it could tell.
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Old March 10, 2010, 08:32 PM   #8
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I might be tempted to see if Winchester is interested in performing a factory refurbish. With such an early vintage they might do the work gratis in exchange for photo/marketing rights. What's the worst they could say? No?
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Old March 11, 2010, 06:27 AM   #9
econrecon
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I'll try it on Fisherman, who knows. I can contact the folks at Winchester directly and see what they have to say, they should know, right?

It may be 114 years old, and it may be rough, but its a nice find for out of the blue all the same!

Best,

EC

Last edited by econrecon; March 11, 2010 at 07:22 AM.
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Old March 11, 2010, 01:09 PM   #10
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If you want the rifle refinished to look like factory new, call John Taylor at Taylor Machine. John does work for several Winchester collectors to return poor quality guns to "like new" condition.
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Old March 11, 2010, 05:32 PM   #11
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Thanks Scorch,

EC
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Old March 13, 2010, 10:16 AM   #12
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Mike Hunter, of Hunter Restorations does excellent work also, and can make period correct barrels for Winchesters.


I'd say that the values expressed so far may be a bit high. I've seen hundreds of older 94's at the Cody Winchester shows. It is an early gun, but has been modified quite a bit, and condition isn't the best. If it's a family gun, then the value doesnt matter much. Parts can be had. Looks like the lever is bent also.

If you want to keep it as is, then just clean it up, shoot it and enjoy it. It wouldnt be too hard to find the needed parts to get it back closer to original condition tho, but the barrel being cut an inch will be hard to deal with. The front magazine band was originally in front of the front sight in that period.
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Old March 14, 2010, 06:02 PM   #13
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Quote:
I would have to disagree with an above value. I have collected and studied Winchester 1894's for 30+ years. The old carbine has some issues that collectors stay away from. The overall condition is only fair. The barrel has been shortened and both front and rear sights have been changed. The wood has been refinished and the forend appears to be 1950's vintage. The magazine has been shortened and swivels installed. The inscription on the left side is also a value reducer. HOWEVER if this old cabine could talk could you imagine the stories it could tell.
I totally agree. Its not the most valuable gun but a cool piece of American firearms history nonetheless. I am almost certain (without looking) that winchester did not make any 94s in 19in barrel lengths unless of course on a custom basis. I couldn't see a knowledgeable collector paying even $500 for such a gun but then again, you (the OP) never disclosed the caliber which could make a difference albeit small. Also, there is no point in restoring a gun with this many issues ESP the cut down barrel. There is no way to add length onto a barrel, it would have to be replaced. If the barrel was an original length, it still would be a borderline decision. The problem with establishing the value is that a hunter would not want it due to potential issues with wear coupled with the age and possibly the caliber and a collector would pass on it (unless it was a bargain) due to the condition and blatant alterations. These guns can be hard to place a value on. Its a gun that would have to be dumped at a gun auction to see the results before true worth could be established.
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Old April 8, 2010, 05:36 PM   #14
k7grc
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winchester age

Sorry but i don't think a "six" digit serial number is pre 1900..

check out this page:

http://forums.gunbroker.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=245213
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Old April 8, 2010, 06:46 PM   #15
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If you seriously think about a restoration of that gun, I suggest you write one of the restorers, send pics and ask for an estimate. Before you open the reply, though, have the EMT's on standby.

Jim
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Old April 8, 2010, 07:27 PM   #16
Scorch
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Quote:
Sorry but i don't think a "six" digit serial number is pre 1900..
The Winchester Model 1894 passed the 100,000 mark in 1897.

Quote:
Before you open the reply, though, have the EMT's on standby.
A "true to factory letter" restoration is very doable, but it will likely cost more than the rifle is worth unless it is an uncommon rifle. We are currently restoring a rifle that lettered from the factory as very unusual, and it will be worth in excess of $10,000 when done. Most Model 1894s are restored for sentimental reasons or to have a "factory-new" rifle, and not for increasing value.
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Old April 8, 2010, 11:04 PM   #17
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winchester date

"The Winchester Model 1894 passed the 100,000 mark in 1897."
I suspect this is based on George Madis time line.


The Polishing Room Serialization Record Books (held by the Cody Firearms Museum) come up with different figures. They are finding Mr. Madis was off by a few years....

My lettered 1894:
serial #172322 Date In: 2-23-1903 Type: rifle Caliber: 32/40 Barrel: round Trigger: plain Date Shipped: 3-4-1903 Order Number: 179607

here is a snippet of the 1894 time line based off polishing room records(thanks Bert)
"
97869 - 11-2-1900
98829 - 3-1-1901
99126 - 12-7-1900
100621 - 8-3-1901
100955 - 2-4-1901
100994 - 3-11-1901

"

You can visit this page and get an Idea where your serial number fits;

http://forums.gunbroker.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=245213
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Old April 9, 2010, 07:42 PM   #18
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[Its a shorter barreled rifle, 19" ]

FYI - Model 1894 "Rifles" generally have forend caps ILO a barrel band, and a crescent butt ILO the curved/flat carbine buttplate with the roll-over top.

R U sure the barrel isn't 20", measured from the muzzle, via a cleaning rod downbore to the face of the closed bolt - the standard Model 1894 Carbine length ?

Although, since the magazine tube looks like it was shortened and the forward band moved back, I suppose that the barrel could also have been shortened an inch to meet your ancestor's "druthers".

The pic of the receiver looks like it is a Second Model receiver, which started in mid-1895 at about SN 3xxx after a few lower SN's were made.

The barrel pic shows the first type of nickel steel designation, known to have been introduced on .30WCF & .25-35 guns after about SN 12,000.

.

Last edited by PetahW; April 9, 2010 at 07:52 PM.
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