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1894 Carbine Project 25-35
August 6, 2013
12:09 pm
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I have been looking all over for a set of early model 1894 cartridge guides for my carbine project, but no luck. Can a set of 30-30 guides be made to work on a 25-35? The cartridge base appears the same.

August 6, 2013
1:40 pm
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the cartridge guides from a 30-30 will work. they are the same.

August 7, 2013
8:00 pm
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Thanks, I will give the 30-30 guides a try. I have several pair. Will let you know how they work out.

August 10, 2013
6:14 am
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Do you know if post '64 guides from a 94 will fit in an 1894 model? Or was the post 64 a complete model design change?

August 14, 2013
8:38 am
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The cartrides guides are cartridge specific. The only cartridge guides that are interchangable are the 32-40 and 32 ws. The new style are not interchangable with the older ones. The guides can be modified to change
calibers. Long ago I had some 30-30 redone to 38-55 but can"t recall who the smith was as they were sent off.

August 14, 2013
9:44 am
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BJREBUCK said
The cartrides guides are cartridge specific. The only cartridge guides that are interchangable are the 32-40 and 32 ws. The guides can be modified to change calibers. Long ago I had some 30-30 redone to 38-55 but can"t recall who the smith was as they were sent off.

I disagree, and apparently Winchester did too.

Winchester manufactured a fair number of 2-barrel (and at least a few 3-barrel) Take Down rifles that were made in different calibers. The most common was a 38-55 & 30 WCF barrel pair, and there was at least one rifle (serial number 63261) that was made with a 25-35 WCF & 38-55 barrel set. These were factory built rifles, with just on set of cartridge guides.

Bert

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August 14, 2013
11:12 am
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Bert,

My guess in those scenarios Winchester used 38-55 cartridge guides for the multi-barrel sets. The smaller 30 WCF cartridge would feed acceptably with those guides.

I have found when playing with a number of old beater guns over the years, most of the time, cartridges will not feed when putting a 38-55 barrel on an action that was originally built for a say the 25-35 cartridge. The middle size cartridges seem to interchange. I have also seen exceptions to this....Suffice to say for at least some of the time, cartridge guides were different for the 38-55 and possibly for the others during some manufacturing periods. My personal observation is the older receiver examples were more specific to specific individual cartridges guides than later examples.

Once again, there are exceptions...just my observations in my barrel swapping adventures. Your mileage may vary.

IMG_3205-Copy-1.JPG

Rapid taper, standard taper, extra heavy. All 45 caliber.

August 14, 2013
7:44 pm
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I agree with Bert as my father's two barrel set is in 30wcf and 25-35. And I am also certain I have seen barrel sets with both the 38-55 and 25-35 calibers but would have to dig and find exactly where I saw them.

Sincerely,
Maverick

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August 14, 2013
9:37 pm
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Well there is that wonderful 5 barrel TD set shown in the beginning of Bob R's book with the one receiver, and a barrel for each caliber of the 1894

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August 14, 2013
9:56 pm
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25-20 said
Well there is that wonderful 5 barrel TD set shown in the beginning of Bob R's book with the one receiver, and a barrel for each caliber of the 1894

I had my hands on that set a few years ago, and I was instrumental in getting Bob R. in touch with the then owner to get the picture for his book. 8)

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August 26, 2013
12:25 pm
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And so the official opinion is________ .
I was at a gun show this weekend (mostly black guns, pistols and Chinese made knives with the guy cooking nuts in the corner) and came across a Model 1894 SRC in 25-35. It was one of those black gun Winchesters (you know the ones that apparently were maintained with SEA 10W-30), 1911 vintage and the guy wanted $1500.00 for it. Besides the “patina” it didn’t look that bad, no major pitting, screws looked good, wood had six trophy marks but underside by the lever but it looked original, some slight lubricating rot around the buttplate but as they say an honest gun. I opened the receiver and noticed the two cartridge guides were cracked at the narrow section. I pointed this out to him and after a discussion about weather or not they were cracked, he conceded they were. I asked what would that adjust his price to and he replied $1500.00. He said the guides were readily available in 30-30 and I could replace them myself. With the price and the, I wasn’t sure factor, I walked. This and some of the other statements he made gave me reason to hit the books again when I got home. I did take notice (again) of that takedown in Renneberg’s book. The next day, since I don’t have a 25-35, I thought about going back up in the morning and see if he had rethought his position but around 9:00 I had some Devine intervention and ended up in the emergency room with an incident. When I got out it was too late to make it back to the show since we had to get to a wedding by three.
This was a long winded (something, heart wise, I don’t have much of anymore) way of broaching the answer to the above thread. Are all of the 1894 – 94 cartridge guides interchangeable or some and if some which ones?
Another suggested topic is how do those rifles and carbines get that black color if anybody knows?
Gene 😕

August 26, 2013
7:17 pm
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3855 said
Bert,

My guess in those scenarios Winchester used 38-55 cartridge guides for the multi-barrel sets. The smaller 30 WCF cartridge would feed acceptably with those guides.

I have found when playing with a number of old beater guns over the years, most of the time, cartridges will not feed when putting a 38-55 barrel on an action that was originally built for a say the 25-35 cartridge. The middle size cartridges seem to interchange. I have also seen exceptions to this....Suffice to say for at least some of the time, cartridge guides were different for the 38-55 and possibly for the others during some manufacturing periods. My personal observation is the older receiver examples were more specific to specific individual cartridges guides than later examples.

Once again, there are exceptions...just my observations in my barrel swapping adventures. Your mileage may vary.

Mark,

I suspect that your observations are real close to the truth. When a multi-barrel set was ordered (and there were more than (100) of them made in the letterable range), Winchester more than likely used 38-55 guides.

I very much suspect that the 30 WCF and 32 WS cartridge guides are identical due to the cartidges being identical except for the slight difference in the neck diameter.

Bert

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August 26, 2013
8:59 pm
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If I had 25-35 takedown, Id break it down (remove the barrel/mag/etc) and feed a 38-55 cartridge through it to see if it feeds the cartridge. I guess if the cartridge got stuck you'd have to work it back out the way it went in.

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August 27, 2013
11:47 am
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I was thinking, we might be looking at this backward since the heads of the 30WCF, 32WS, 25-35 (.506) and the 32-40 (.5059) are all larger than the 38-55 (.4705).
I thought maybe the length or width of the 38-55 might interfere, so I took a 1923 mod. 1894 in 30WCF and pushed the elevator down to the bottom of the receiver and dropped a 38-55 cartridge in through the top. The cartridge cleared through the guides and had ample room lengthwise. I pulled the leaver slowly back and the cartridge traveled up through the guides and slid forward into the chamber with no feeding problems. I only inserted it in slightly past the bullet but if the chamber was the correct one I have no doubt it would have chambered. I don’t know if it proves anything without having a multi-barreled takedown rifle to check the guides but the smaller head size of the 38-55 has to come into play doesn’t it. 😕
Gene

September 19, 2013
6:47 am
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Bert,
I have never seen a multi-caliber barrel set, or had the opportunity to
dismember one to see whats inside. It must be a rare bird indeed.
However if you take a look at Arthur Pirkles' book "The models of 1894 and 1895" 1998 edition starting on pg. 28 under the heading of cartridge giudes there is a table of dimensions plus drawings of the various guides.
The differences are quite clear. Having restored, rebuilt, repaired and
generally modified many of these rifles/carbines over the last 30+ years
I have had no luck getting mis matched caliber to guides to function
properly. 😮 You must have the "Midas Touch". Bless you my son.
And by proper function I mean not thumping the side of the reciever
while rattling the finger lever side to side and fore and aft while gazing down into the open top of the receiver ....just kidding. But I have seen
more than one person doing that at the range while cussing their "Junk Winchester". I have bought a few that way too. Nor do I mean fanning one
like Chuck Conners does his highly modified model 92 in the opening of the old western "The Rifleman".
It seems to me that if these are that uncommon they probably didn't function very well. I can't imagine Winchester making several very different types of guides if only one size would fit all. ❓
I guess we'll have to agree to disagree on this one.
Happy shooting,
B

September 19, 2013
8:25 am
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BJREBUCK said
Bert,
I have never seen a multi-caliber barrel set, or had the opportunity to
dismember one to see whats inside. It must be a rare bird indeed.
However if you take a look at Arthur Pirkles' book "The models of 1894 and 1895" 1998 edition starting on pg. 28 under the heading of cartridge giudes there is a table of dimensions plus drawings of the various guides.
The differences are quite clear. Having restored, rebuilt, repaired and
generally modified many of these rifles/carbines over the last 30+ years
I have had no luck getting mis matched caliber to guides to function
properly. 😮 You must have the "Midas Touch". Bless you my son.
And by proper function I mean not thumping the side of the reciever
while rattling the finger lever side to side and fore and aft while gazing down into the open top of the receiver ....just kidding. But I have seen
more than one person doing that at the range while cussing their "Junk Winchester". I have bought a few that way too. Nor do I mean fanning one
like Chuck Conners does his highly modified model 92 in the opening of the old western "The Rifleman".
It seems to me that if these are that uncommon they probably didn't function very well. I can't imagine Winchester making several very different types of guides if only one size would fit all. ❓
I guess we'll have to agree to disagree on this one.
Happy shooting,
B

You can disagree about this topic to your heart's content, but the fact remains unchanged... Winchester did manufacture (118) multi-barrel Model 1894 Take Down rifles prior to serial number 354000 (as listed in the survey that was published in the ARMAX Volume V).

Just because you personally have not ever seen or dismantled one does not mean that they do no exist, or more importantly, that the do not function properly. I sincerely doubt that Winchester would have ever allowed a poorly functioning firearm to go out door.

In regards to their rarity, they most certainly are not common. The primary reason for that was due to the added cost of the rifle. Take Down Rifles were already a substantial extra cost, and adding the second barrel assembly really increased the cost of the rifle. I suspect that Winchester manufactured at least (300) or more multi-barrel Model 1894 rifles before discontinuing the Take Down rifles in 1932.

Bert

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September 19, 2013
11:53 am
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Right back at you Bert, you can disagree to your hearts content as well.
There are no facts in question here at all. I neither stated or implied that Winchester didn't make the guns, only that I haven't seen one. Further
I haven't had any luck making mismatched caliber to guides function
properly to MY satisfaction. As a mechanical engineer myself John Brownings' inventive genius has always impressed me. I was looking for
some clues as to how this was accomplished. As to Winchester knowingly
releasing a sub par product, well, profit always trumps everything else short of inviting a lawsuit, even back then. That is why there are so many
design improvements not necessarily related to cost of manufacture.
In my experience the general attitude of management and accounting is
yea, yea we no but lets get it out there and sell it. We'll fix that later
when you work out a soluiton. I don't think thats changed much.
A multi barrel set (once the fixtures are set up) is cheaper to build than
multiple whole guns and the company can get a nice extra profit out of
it as a sepcial order.
I am not a dyed-in-the-wool purest collector. How many of this or that
Winchester made is of little interest to me. HOW they did it, now that's
interesting. Any insight would be appreciated.
Happy shooting,
B

September 19, 2013
7:16 pm
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BJREBUCK said
As to Winchester knowingly releasing a sub par product, well, profit always trumps everything else short of inviting a lawsuit, even back then. That is why there are so many
design improvements not necessarily related to cost of manufacture.
In my experience the general attitude of management and accounting is
yea, yea we no but lets get it out there and sell it. We'll fix that later
when you work out a soluiton. I don't think thats changed much.

Not to offend but I as I'm sure others totally disagree with such statements. In my opinion if your making such statements, your obviously not very well aware of the day to day goings on and practices of the factory. It was a different time back then. People actually cared for the products they made and spent / made life long careers at doing so.

Now Winchester may have skimmed on how they treated the employees or on the conditions of there buildings or infrastructure. But they did not skimp on there finished products. I guarantee if you could speak with anyone that worked there that they would back me up on this.

Granted Winchester made some set backs Post-WWII but even then the quality of there product was held on high.

Sincerely,
Maverick

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September 20, 2013
8:52 am
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Maverick,
No offense taken. I obviously have gone and whacked the 'ol hornets
nest. I sincerely appologise to any that were offended. For what its
worth, I would advise the original poster save himself a lot of trouble
and to use cartridge guides that were designed for the caliber barrel that is going to be used.
As to speaking to those who actually worked at the factory (Who were
mostly independant contractors as I understand it) that would be a real eye opener. I really believe
they would confirm my thoughts, but then perhaps not. All I can say is that I've sure spent a lot of hours deburring,
realigning, refitting, etc., etc. inside these old guns to believe that the
individual craftsman were allowed or given the time do their best work.
I have more Winchester guns than any other make and I enjoy shooting
and studying their mechanical workings a great deal. It is Brownings
mechanical genius that drives and inspires me along with the other great gun designers.
To me too much brand loyalty is not a good thing as it
tends to distort ones view of reality.....oops there I go again, sorry.
B

September 20, 2013
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BJREBUCK said
To me too much brand loyalty is not a good thing as it
tends to distort ones view of reality.....oops there I go again, sorry.
B

Cute Wink

I would respond further but I'm not going to waste my time.

Maverick

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