View Full Version : Winchester Mod. 1897 Dismantle

Wolf Lies Down
October 1, 2007, 11:58 PM
-I recently picked up a take-down 12 gauge "C" series WinMod97. The gun dealer I got it from couldn't wait to get it out the door and gave me a good deal. The serial number was not legible and someone along the way had punched in a 3-digit serial number below where the factory SN was. It is the dirtiest, crudiest gun I've ever seen. It almost wouldn't cycle due to the crud. Where I thought the steel in the reciever had been beat to $#!+ and deformed, I found that it was solidified dirt/grease/carbon/powder/residue. After getting into it a bit, I found a magazine plug (to limit the number of rounds the tube holds) was a ten-inch long thin tree branch that had been dropped down inside the magazine tube spring. Anyway, fun stuff like that. It has a 26 to 26-3/4 inch barrel, so I assume the barrel was cut off somewhere along the line or the gun started life as a "Brush Gun" model from the factory, I don't know. It has the old round-knob-grip, English-style stock and compared to other original Model 97s wood I've had my hands on, this stock is significantly heavier for some reason. Anyone know why this might be? A very careful visual inspection shows that it is unbroken, unrepaired walnut. Markings on the Action Slide ( MODEL 1897 -WINCHESTER- Trade Mark ) I think tell me that the gun was made in 1905 or 1906. Can anyone confirm this?

I thought the S/N was also supposed to be on the barrel someplace, but I haven't seen this.

I have been working carefully on this shotgun for a few days to completely disassemble (detail strip) it, clean it up, stone the slots, smooth the gouges, etc. Surprisingly, nothing is missing, but the Mainspring is broken and I have to replace that. All the screws are in good shape, the wood is not cracked, etc. so this should turn out to be a nice gun.

Since I intend to use this gun for Cowboy Action Shooting, I will probably fiddle around with a Brownells GunKote spray bake-on finish in Gun Metal Blue, and spray the trigger, hammer, and one or two other parts with GunKote Gold color (or not, depending on the level of tackiness that my fellow shooters will endure without shooting me).

Anyway, the main question I have is this:

Can the Receiver Shank (the round, threaded steel rod coming out of the rear of the Receiver that the buttstock slips over and is bolted onto) be removed from the back of the Receiver without using a hydraulic press?

I don't know if the Receiver Shank is threaded into the Receiver or pressed in. I have been unable to make the thing move with reasonable pressure and don't want to apply terminal force.

Regards, and Thanx! in advance for any help and advice you can offer.

Wolf Lies Down

October 10, 2007, 11:17 PM
WLD, I think you got a pretty good deal. You mentioned the barrel length as being 26" or so and possibly being cut down; original barrel lengths ranged from 26" to 32". I have no explanation for the stock seeming heavier than other '97 stocks, except that it may be a denser wood like the heart wood. If it's a "C" model, I believe these were made from 1897 to about 1902 or 1903. A "D" model came after that and the final improvment was the model "E". I have never seen the serial number stamped on the barrel of anything as the receiver usually bears the serial number, although, the serial number of takedown '97s was also on the barrel extension, just forward of the receiver stamping.
You must be commended for tackling the disassembly of the '97 as it can be quite daunting for the novice; but maybe you're not a novice.
The receiver shank can be unscrewed, for whatever reason you have for removing it.