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1876 Winchester for long range.
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August 5, 2015 - 5:52 pm
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On page 125 of Herbert G. Houze book  (The Winchester Model 1876 Centennial Rifle )  there is mention of of the .45-90-500 Long Range cartridge and that only one rifle was ever specifically recorded as having been solely intended for that caliber. Received in the warehouse on Dec. 31 1890 sr# 62311. The rifle is described as follows rifle 45-90 28″ Round Barrel , Set Trigger ,Half Magazine , Sporting Leaf Rear Sight, Wind Gauge Front Sight ,Shipped Jan. 2, 1891, Returned and repaired Jan. 6, 1891. On page 124 of the same book , there is an Illustration of the .45-90-450 Model 1876 Long Range cartridge , which is said to have been published on page 41 of the Winchester Company’s May 1, 1878 Catalog. Recently I have assembled Paper Patch cartridges for my 45/75wcf and a reduced charge rifle M76 45/60 in an effort to duplicate this very interesting to me cartridge and piece of Winchester History . If anyone may know where I could find any additional information about this rifle and the Long Range cartridge , I would be very greatfull . PS. The paper patch cartridges that I have assembled with bp. have proven very accurate in the 28″ barrel M76  45/75wcf and 45/60wcf. ,,,,,,DT  

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August 5, 2015 - 8:48 pm
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I find your Question a little odd and I’m sure about the reference information either. I’ll have to see if I can find my copy of Houze’s book and look it over. That said, the “45-90 WINCHESTER” wasn’t invented and chambered by Winchester until the year 1886 for the Model 1886. So if there was a 76 made in 1890, it would of been highly experimental, and begs the question, Why? Why would the company be experimenting with a model 76 in that caliber when they already had the Model 1886 around for (4) years? 

I don’t have a copy of the 1878 Catalog, that I know of, but would only imagine it could be referring to the “45-90 Sharps” as it was invented in the year 1876. But it wasn’t chambered for the Model 1876 either. Cartridge length is too long as, I suspect would be the 45-90 Winchester as well.

I’ll keep digging but that seems quite odd indeed.

Sincerely,

Maverick 

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August 5, 2015 - 9:39 pm
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Maverick Thank ‘s for your reply. I was not trying to sound odd or confuseing . The cartridge that I am speaking of was an experimental cartridge from the early days of the Winchester 1876 . 1877 -78?  Not to be confused with the 45-90wcf or 45-90-300. The rifle is reported to be produced in 1890 . That is no suprise I have an 1876 Winchester from 1891 just a few # different than the sr# described. Again Thanks for your help. ,,,DT

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August 6, 2015 - 1:59 am
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Yes, this cartridge causes some confusion.  I have striven for some years to obtain an original cartridge.  They were not headstamped which also doesn’t help.  I do not know how they got the 90 grains of powder in the case as it was the same case as the .45-75 W.C.F..  I can only guess the heavier bullet was seated further out to make room for more powder?  Bullet was paper patched as is illustrated by Herb Houze.  Dan Shuey has some information on these cartridges.  They were for “single loading” as they were too long to feed from the magazine and up the elevator.  Now, what if you decided to not shoot it?  Bet the fun began as it was too long with bullet, so the shooter would have to have angled it back out the ejection port as he had to angle it in.

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August 6, 2015 - 1:40 pm
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Thanks Tim for your reply. I think to get 90gr. even in a balloon head case would require quite a bit of compression. I have handloaded and shot cartridges made as close as I can by what is described as the( For 1876 Long Range cartridge ) in my M76 rifles and you are right once the cartridge is chambered , and the bolt closed so the extractor closes over the rim . The cartridge must be fired , it is to long to be extracted with the bullet seated out that far. I often wonder if that may have been the reason the rifle described by Herbert Houze was said to have been sent bach for repairs only four days after the owner received it. The OAL. of this cartridge is unknown to me. Do you know how I could get any information that Dan Shuey may have? Is he someone on the forum?  I know many of the questions I have about this topic may never be answered , but I find it interesting enough to ask and search.Thanks ,,,,DT Ron Wehmeyer .

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August 6, 2015 - 4:34 pm
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Ron,

I don’t know if Dan is on the forum or not.  His books on the Winchester cartridges are of little help in this matter as he deals with HEADSTAMPED cartridges, etc. and he told me a couple of years ago the single loading version was not headstamped.  For sure it is not in his books.  This also makes it very hard to about impossible seemingly to FIND an original cartridge, and I have been looking for some years!

I’ve little doubt that Dan, were you to contact him, would have far more information that he could impart.  I have found him to be a walking encyclopedia on Winchester cartridges, ephemera, etc.  I would not wish to pass the contact information I have to access him as I do not know his willingness to be contacted.  If you will pass yours to me privately, then I would pass that on to him and leave it to him to contact you?  My e-mail is [email protected].  Good luck.  Enquiring minds would like to KNOW more about this cartridge!

Tim

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August 6, 2015 - 5:31 pm
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Hey Tim ,I will send you my contact info. In (The Winchester Book) , George Madis on pg. #235 he makes mention that  in 1878 the 45-90-450 cartridge were offered  , but only for a few months. Then discontinued . ,,,,DT

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August 6, 2015 - 7:20 pm
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Was looking through the book by Edmund E. Lewis ( The Story of the Winchester 1 of 1000 and 1 of 100 Rifles) on pg. #85 he mentions that For long range target shooting a cartridge is made using 85 to 90 gr. powder and a patched bullet weighing 450 to 500 gr.  for the Model 1876 Winchester . ,,,DT

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August 6, 2015 - 7:35 pm
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I think I’m following you fellers a little better now. If the the Cartridge was made and sold in the 1878, it would make sense that it wouldn’t be head stamped. As you may already know Winchester didn’t start head-stamping cartridges until the year 1885.It was probably loaded with 86 grains or something, as I agree 90grs seems a stretch or at the least you would be compressing the powder when seating the bullet. 

Still begs the question, Why in 1890 would the company be experimenting with the 1876? It was the old model and just a few years later would be phased out anyway.

Sincerely,

Maverick

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August 6, 2015 - 8:14 pm
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Maverick my guess as to why , would be that Winchester was ask for this rifle by special order and glad to make use of parts in stock just setting there. Why a customer would want the old 1876 model when the model 1886 was in production,well a matter of prefrence I would guess . I cant say why I today like the old Dinosaur Model 1876 , they are said to be weak , low powered , heavy , outdated ,on and on. But there is just something about them that just screams Winchester to me . My favorite model for sure. DT

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August 7, 2015 - 12:07 am
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DT ,  I agree that there is really something about the 1876 , that I wasnt aware of till a couple years ago, when I had the good fortune of acquiring a really nice 45-60 OBR .The trigger had already been done to about 2 lb, so a treasured shooter to  former owners who kept it in exc cond. including bore ,and accuracy and function exceeded my expectations.

I am also new to 1886’s , been about 12 years since my first one in 40-82 and later a 33. Both are Jewels , and I knew why the 1876 had the quickest phase out period of all models, because of the newer more hunter friendly improvement.

Im very glad I got the bug to try the 1876 however (a friend buying a replica got me going) as it opened a new Winchester awakening in me. When I was younger it was mostly 92’s that turned me on . Now my favorite model rotates. I really like the 1873 ,1876 ,1886 ,1892, 1894, oh ya the  1885 is a Jewel too

Phil

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