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Old May 2, 2013, 08:39 PM   #1
jfranz
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1873 Winchester

I posted a couple of months ago regarding an old 73 Winchester I found in my grandpa's antiques. I took everyone's advice and agree it was in too bad of shape. I decided to start gathering original parts off of eBay to build my own, and steal some of the useable parts off of the original gun. I have now acquired all of the pieces and I am getting ready to start assembly on a 73 in 32-20. I will post pictures as the assembly progress. One question I do have is would the gun be worth anything since all parts will be vintage Winchester parts and I am using a lower tang that has a 32-20 serial number?
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Old May 2, 2013, 09:34 PM   #2
Bob Wright
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All guns in firing condition (that is, fully functional) are worth something. A Winchester '73 made by Winchester will have some value above a plain used rifle. The value will have to be determined by you and your local market.

The old saying remains true, a gun is only worth what somebody's willing to pay for it.

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Old May 2, 2013, 09:36 PM   #3
jfranz
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Not that I plan on selling the rifle when I am done, but just want to make sure I am not assembling a rifle worth $50 either. If this works out I might build another old lever action or wait until everything dies down and build an AR.
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Old May 3, 2013, 11:59 AM   #4
Hardcase
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As a shooter, it'll certainly have value. Any collectible value would hinge upon whether or not the gun's configuration matches the serial number record from the Winchester records.

It'll certainly be worth more than 50 bucks, but it won't be worth as much as a similar condition, all original rifle. I wouldn't let that worry you, though - think of it as a legacy from your grandfather and enjoy it that way.
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Old May 3, 2013, 06:59 PM   #5
jfranz
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I made sure to get a lower tang that has a serial number that matches the build that I am doing. All of the metal has a nice brown/plum finish with no scratches or dings. I have all of the original wood and won't refinish it. It has taken me 4 months to gather all of the parts that I needed.
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Old May 3, 2013, 08:17 PM   #6
PetahW
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.

Don't ask; don't tell - if you do good enough of a job, who's to know ?

Just don't lie about it - IOW, let the rifle speak for itself, and let anyone else draw their own conclusions.





.
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Old May 5, 2013, 11:16 AM   #7
highpower3006
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I restore abused guns all the time. I see nothing wrong with it as long as if and when you go to sell it, the buyer is informed that it is a parts gun. In my case, I salvage 1903 Springfields and their variants that were worked over by Bubba in his garage.

I too, use original parts and if the patina matches on everything, it is nearly impossible to tell they are not all original.

Kudos to you for resurrecting another old Winchester from the dead and I am sure that you will get a great deal of satisfaction when it is done.
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Old May 5, 2013, 11:30 AM   #8
jfranz
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Thanks, I think it will come out rather nicely, but being my first it will more than likely never leave my collection. If this one comes out nicely I will move on and try to find another Winchester lever gun or a bubba'd bolt rifle to re-build. I never had the bug to do an AR but now all of the talk about possible future bans I might do one of those too. I always liked guns but restored cars, and found out all of the money and time required to do one just isn't satisfying anymore and I could easily do a couple guns per year cheaper and better fit my attention span.

I should start the rebuild in a couple of weeks and will post pictures before and after. It seems like all of the time is in tracking down the parts and not in the build time.
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Old May 5, 2013, 11:55 AM   #9
highpower3006
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It does get a little addicting. You are right, the time is in the part collecting. AR's take about 30 minutes to put together, but with the shortage of parts right now it can take a couple of months to find all the bits.

Here are a few of the rifles I have done in the last six months or so:

1942 Remington M1903(M)



1943 Smith-Corona 1903-A3 (started from a barreled receiver)


1918 Springfield 1903 (another barreled receiver resto)


1943 Remington 1903-A3 (no before photos, but it looked like the first rifle)


Another 1943 Remington A3 (started from a bare receiver)
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Old May 5, 2013, 02:48 PM   #10
jfranz
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Those are some beauties. I have a feeling that I need to get my CR license, it will make things easier.
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