The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The North Corral > Curios and Relics

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old February 2, 2013, 03:07 PM   #1
jfranz
Member
 
Join Date: December 10, 2012
Posts: 17
1873 Winchester

Hey everyone, longtime lurker but this is my first post. I was going through some stuff that was my grandps's who passed away when I was 17, and found a Model 1873 Winchester 22 cal, the serial number puts it manufactured in 1890. The rifle is in horrible shape, forearm busted, action is bound up and the outside of the barrel and receiver is pitted. The bore is in good shape with no rust.

What is everyone's opinion is this worth buying new parts and fixing up and re-bluing or just make it a wall hanger?
jfranz is offline  
Old February 2, 2013, 03:38 PM   #2
James K
Staff
 
Join Date: March 17, 1999
Posts: 19,286
The Model 1873 in .22 caliber* is pretty rare (I have seen only one) and I would advise not doing anything yourself unless you have experience with antique arms work. Dollar wise, it is better to leave it alone than to make a mistake and do it irreparable harm.

You can use a good penetrant on active rust to prevent it from getting worse, and clean off the worst of the dirt, but that is all. Meantime use Google to locate experts in that gun. I do not recommend taking it to a gunsmith since most of today's gunsmiths have never worked on any Model 1873, let alone a .22. AFAIK, parts unique to the .22 are simply not available.

If you decide to have it restored, contact www.turnbullrestoration.com and see what they say.

*This assumes the rifle is a factory .22, and not a gunsmith conversion.

Jim
__________________
Jim K
James K is offline  
Old February 2, 2013, 03:44 PM   #3
jfranz
Member
 
Join Date: December 10, 2012
Posts: 17
I need to get some pictures of this gun but it is in really rough shape. I have found a supply of 22 parts for it from a couple of dealers on-line. I would have to either get a new forearm and cap or build one since half of it is missing. I haven't decided whether to do anything to the finish, but don't have to touch it. The biggest issue is all of the inner tube parts of the magazine are gone. It appears to be a factory .22 since the barrel matches all of the design features as pointed out on various sites.
jfranz is offline  
Old February 2, 2013, 05:23 PM   #4
jfranz
Member
 
Join Date: December 10, 2012
Posts: 17
I will be able to put some pictures up tomorrow but I did a bit more investigating on it, and on the carrier it is stamped 22 Cal Short. All of the writing on the top of the barrel has been destroyed due to pitting.
jfranz is offline  
Old February 2, 2013, 07:17 PM   #5
PetahW
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 19, 2008
Posts: 4,679
It's so rare, that none of that matters - UNLESS you start fooling with it.

FWIW, many collectors value guns still in original, un-restored/unrepaired, condition to one that's had less than a museum quality restoration - which not many folks can do in their home workshop, much less on the kitchen table.

You could easily do what a lot of unknowing folks do - turn a rifle worth several thousand dollars into a $500 (or less) parts gun.



.
PetahW is offline  
Old February 2, 2013, 07:50 PM   #6
jfranz
Member
 
Join Date: December 10, 2012
Posts: 17
Here are some photos: Would it be ok to get it back into shooting condition on the internal parts and not touch the exterior?

http://imageshack.us/a/img534/4035/1873z.jpg
http://imageshack.us/a/img843/8522/18731q.jpg
http://imageshack.us/a/img805/7415/18737.jpg
http://imageshack.us/a/img189/2474/18735.jpg
http://imageshack.us/a/img5/1161/18736.jpg
http://imageshack.us/a/img856/4038/18734.jpg
http://imageshack.us/a/img690/6084/18738o.jpg
jfranz is offline  
Old February 2, 2013, 09:07 PM   #7
James K
Staff
 
Join Date: March 17, 1999
Posts: 19,286
You are right, that one is rough. The brass sideplates are home made; you can see the "shadow" on the receiver where the original ones were. The receiver is .22 (the "dip" in the top front of the receiver proves that). The foreend and foreend cap should be the same as for the small tube (.25 and .32) rifles, so those parts would be no problem.

But in all honesty, the gun is so hacked up and so much of the surface destroyed that I doubt it can be restored in any way that won't destroy any value that is left. I don't think Turnbull would take on the job, but I could be wrong. You can call them and send pictures and see what they say.

There might be interest from someone who just wants a "relic" .22 to fill a hole in the collection until a better one comes along, but that would probably bring very little, maybe a couple of hundred dollars.

Jim
__________________
Jim K
James K is offline  
Old February 2, 2013, 09:41 PM   #8
jfranz
Member
 
Join Date: December 10, 2012
Posts: 17
My idea would be to get the parts that are needed to get it back to original shape and then draw file the pitting out of the gun and try to re-blue it. Depending upon the shape of the bore I might try to just make a little plinker out of it.
jfranz is offline  
Old February 3, 2013, 01:50 AM   #9
Scorch
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 13, 2006
Location: Washington state
Posts: 11,429
Call John Taylor at Taylor Machine 253-445-4073. John rebuilds old Winchesters, and his work is outstanding.

As far as draw-filing the metal, don't. In working although rough condition, that rifle may be worth quite a bit. Drawfiled and buggered up, it will be worthless. If you are unwilling to put the money into it to restore the rifle, you can sell it as-is to a collector. John Taylor knows several collectors, he may be able to help you find a buyer.
__________________
Never try to educate someone who resists knowledge at all costs.
But what do I know?
Summit Arms Services
Taylor Machine
Scorch is offline  
Old February 3, 2013, 02:22 PM   #10
James K
Staff
 
Join Date: March 17, 1999
Posts: 19,286
IMHO, the WORST thing you could do is attempt a DIY restoration.

Jim
__________________
Jim K
James K is offline  
Old February 3, 2013, 03:07 PM   #11
jag2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 30, 2009
Location: dallas
Posts: 379
This really is a tough one. It's in a little bit of too bad a shape to enjoy hanging on a wall as is. If you were lucky enough to find someone who really wanted it, for some reason I can't understand, you might sell it. There are several people capable of rehabbing it to something you would enjoy looking at and shooting but at what cost and as previously mentioned all collector value would be gone. If it was me and I had the money ( a lot ) to spare I would have it redone, but there are a lot of people that would argue against that. The only sure thing is do not try to redo it yourself, I think everyone would agree with that. My best advice is take some time and don't rush into anything. There are several right answers and really only one wrong one.
jag2 is offline  
Old February 3, 2013, 04:21 PM   #12
jfranz
Member
 
Join Date: December 10, 2012
Posts: 17
Yes I would agree normally a diy rebuild would not be a good idea, but I have rehabbed a lot of metal objects (machinery, guns, sheet metal) and have the tools and know how to do as good of a job as anyone. I would really like to find a different barrel but since these are so rare that will be almost impossible. The only thing I would be worried about would be destroying any intrinsic value that it might have, but as been discussed this one is so far gone that it cant be worth more than a Mosin. I am going to get all vintage parts using ebay to rebuild. I probably wont be starting on this until next winter anyways, I have a couple of other projects that I have to complete.
jfranz is offline  
Old February 3, 2013, 06:52 PM   #13
m&p45acp10+1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 3, 2009
Location: Central Texas
Posts: 3,307
Clean it up with oil. Wipe it down well every day for a couple of weeks. You would be surprised how well that alone will work.

Oil all of the action parts well, and let it soak in for a few days. See if the action will work. If it does call it good. I would not try to make a shooter out of it. The condition is a good proof of its authenticity. Many of the old ones have patina.

I would clean it up. Make a display box for it with some memorabillia in with it, and make it a real cool wall hanger.
__________________
No matter how many times you do it and nothing happens it only takes something going wrong one time to kill you.
m&p45acp10+1 is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:38 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.08317 seconds with 9 queries