View Full Version : winchester model 06 semiauto 22 rifle

April 18, 2009, 05:29 PM
Browsing at a show, I found pretty little winchester offered. It had strong clear lettering on the barrel, from which I clearly recall it being called a winchester (model) 06. It was a 22 rifle and I found the serial number twice on the underside of the receiver (body and trigger assembly had matching numbers). I did not think to look for either a serial number on the barrel nor for make and model on the receiver. But since the potential seller did not know when the rifle had been made and I had yet to do any research on this gun, I just noted things down and came home to look it up.

So the question is sort of "is this anything" because when I tried to get an estimation of the date of manufacture, I could not find a model 06 semiauto. I am sure it was not a pump like the model 06 about which information can be readily found -- and yet also certain that the barrel model identifier was "06." The obvious answer is that the gun has been re-barreled, which would make sense of the discrepancy in wear between the barrel and receiver engravings (clear winchester model and corporation information versus worn serial numbers) that I only noticed in thinking back about it afterwards.

I would appreciate any expert commentary on the model 06 (pump but never semiautomatic?) and opinions on whether I should bother the potential seller with this information (perhaps he would honestly want to know if the gun is not all original?).

James K
April 18, 2009, 11:54 PM
I can't be sure at this remove, but IIRC the barrels of the Model 1903 semi-auto and that of the Model 1906 pump are the same except for the hanger for the magazine on the pump gun. Since the Model 1903 used the .22 Winchester Auto cartridge which was dropped in 1970 and which for decades before that was expensive and hard to get compared to .22 LR, it seems quite possible that someone would want to put a 1906 barrel on a 1903 for very practical reasons, rather than some modern attempt at fraud.

There are usually questions about why Winchester ever introduced the .22 Winchester Auto at all, but the answer is fairly simple. The autoloader required a consistent level of ammo and good control on its manufacture. At that time, there was no consistency at all in .22 LR ammo, and Winchester didn't want complaints caused by bad ammo. So they came up with their own cartridge, made only by them under strict quality control.