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Old November 8, 2006, 05:27 AM   #1
Join Date: August 21, 2005
Location: Soutern Iowa
Posts: 29
Winchester Model 1911

I recently bought a model 1911 at auction for $110.00. On the sale bill it was only listed as (Old recoil operated winchester shotgun). By the ser.# it was built in 1916. It seems mechanicaly sound and the wood is still nice, but the blueing has gone with age. There were only a little over 83,000 made from 1911 thru 1925,and were Winchester's first semi-auto scattergun. I plan on taking it out bird hunting in the next few weeks (light trap loads only for now) to see how she shoots. Can you guys tell me anything else about my new Widow Maker?
kcoop9999 is offline  
Old November 15, 2006, 05:46 PM   #2
Join Date: March 30, 2006
Location: Georgia
Posts: 40
Widow Maker

You just bought the "Widow Maker" Winchester. If I am correct. this gun does not have an operating handle. To cock the gun, you must grasp the knurled portion of the barrel and pull back. Hard to do if you have sweaty hands or rain on the barrel.

Guess what many owners did back in "the good old days"? They rested the END of the barrel on their chest and pushed down. Sometimes KABOOM!

There you had a widow, sometimes, if the gun fired on chambering the round.
robroy15 is offline  
Old November 15, 2006, 11:59 PM   #3
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Join Date: April 3, 2005
Location: Rochester, New York
Posts: 2,136
I couldn't "place" the model til i read about the "knurled" barrel. I remember many years ago handling one. All I can say is I wish you the best of luck and keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.
Ruger4570 is offline  
Old November 16, 2006, 09:05 AM   #4
Dave McC
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Join Date: October 13, 1999
Location: Columbia, Md, USA
Posts: 8,812
Outside of the egregious cocking system, there's little about the 1911 Winchester that goes wrong. It's also a nice pointer, handling well.

Be safe.....
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Old November 16, 2006, 09:13 AM   #5
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Join Date: May 20, 2004
Posts: 172
Widowmakers are for walls.

I'd replace all of the springs before you fire this. I'd grab a manual from off of Ebay, and make sure all of the springs are even present. John Browning designed this action to get around some patents held by Browning? It realy is a beautiful action. When you get it apart, you can see all of the forged parts, and just how much machining went into its manufacture. Personally, I think your nuts for shooting it, but to each his own. I'd take it apart, and remove the firing pin, and use it as a wall hanger. The firing pin can be stored nicely under the butplate, wrapped in a Rig-oiled cloth. If you do decide to take this apart, WEAR SAFETY GLASSES! The mainspring is under considerable tension, and will come ALIVE on you! Gloves are not a bad idea either. (Ask me how I know. )
Chop Chop!
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Old November 19, 2006, 03:02 AM   #6
Join Date: August 21, 2005
Location: Soutern Iowa
Posts: 29
Thanks for the replies! I found the manual and some handy disassembly tips on one of the other forums. She's a real sound gun for her age, and still shoots well. Bosshoff, you got the part about all the machineings right!! A new gun with that much manufacturing cost today would cost a couple $K easy!!
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