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1876 Saddle ring Rifle
December 7, 2020
3:29 pm
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Had the opportunity to acquire a very rare Winchester m1876. Arrived today. My first 76 & a dandy it is. DOM 1886 with 28” barrel in 45-60. I never heard of a SRR. Im careful when using the term rare but this seems to be a fine example. I was told the rifle was mentioned in Herbert Houze 76 book but I can’t confirm that as I don’t have the book.

Bert was kind enough to interpret the letter for me, “When originally built by Winchester, it was a Saddle Ring Carbine (and entered in the ledger records as “Carbine”). However, before it was sold, it went back to the assembly room and was converted to a Rifle configuration, but the saddle ring was retained”.

Thought I would share.

RickC

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December 7, 2020
3:42 pm
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There Ya’ go Rick now Your cookin’ spread a little of them Cdn. $’s around. Nice find  congrats

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December 7, 2020
8:29 pm
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Thanks Henry. It’s now the center piece of my small collection. Would be nice to know if, or how many other models have a saddle ring. I’ve never seen any but I know better than to think there aren’t any.
Very interesting rifle & very happy to own it.

RickC

December 7, 2020
8:41 pm
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Good thing its documented…….

December 7, 2020
8:55 pm
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Manuel said
Good thing its documented…….  

Wouldn’t have acquired it otherwise!!

December 7, 2020
10:17 pm
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 Rick, The value of a letter! T/R

December 7, 2020
10:27 pm
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Yes TR some guns demand a letter. The letter confirmed my decision to purchase.
I also lean on Bert Hartman sometimes for his research knowledge & expert opinion when considering a high value purchase.

RickC

December 8, 2020
12:53 am
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Nice addition Rick!

I recall some years ago – probably 20 to 30 – Merz had a high dollar M1876 rifle with a sling ring.  I think the price was $20k or so.  I also seem to recall there was no mention of the ring in the letter (and it hadn’t been changed from a carbine either).  On very rare occasions I’ve seen other rifles (e.g. M1886) with a special order sling ring.  I think it is a very cool special order feature.

December 8, 2020
1:10 am
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Thanks Steve. I’m relatively new to collecting compared to the regulars here but I knew enough that it was a special gun. Was excited for the opportunity to acquire it.

RickC

December 8, 2020
2:01 am
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Good call, Rick. Good things happen when you pay attention and do your homework. Congrats on a very interesting rifle!

 

Mike

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December 8, 2020
2:09 am
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Thanks Mike. Appreciate the reply.

December 10, 2020
12:00 am
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My question. The book says “rebored” to 45/60. The rifle in question is reported to be changed from a carbine to a rifle. So is this the same as the book? The book also says Carbines rebored to 45-60, this one has a new barrel, is that a technical “rebore”? 

My letter says mine started as a 50-95 and was changed to a 45/60, sadly…. no ring and not as nice as the one in question. Just wondering what the more learned collectors think as they read the Houze book and how they interpret his use of words. 

The book does not have all of the changed 76’s in it, just wondering. 

December 10, 2020
12:33 am
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Winchester would not “rebore” a barrel.  It would be much cheaper for the customer, to have the barrel changed to a different caliber.  This is especially true in respects to the gun in question.  It was a saddle ring “carbine” taken from a rack in the warehouse and changed to an octagon barreled rifle in .45-60.  If left alone and shipped as a carbine in .40-60, it would be an extremely rare gun and probably much more desirable.  Very few ’76 carbines were shipped in this caliber.

December 10, 2020
1:22 am
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win4575 said
Winchester would not “rebore” a barrel.  It would be much cheaper for the customer, to have the barrel changed to a different caliber.  This is especially true in respects to the gun in question.  It was a saddle ring “carbine” taken from a rack in the warehouse and changed to an octagon barreled rifle in .45-60.  If left alone and shipped as a carbine in .40-60, it would be an extremely rare gun and probably much more desirable.  Very few ’76 carbines were shipped in this caliber.  

I can’t comment about whether Winchester would rebore a barrel. My rifle & the letter can speak for itself.

December 10, 2020
1:39 am
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win4575 said
Winchester would not “rebore” a barrel.  It would be much cheaper for the customer, to have the barrel changed to a different caliber.  

That is not true… I know for a fact that Winchester did indeed rebore barrels when a customer requested it.  I have positively identified several Model 1885 rifles with factory rebored barrels, and one Model 1886 with a factory rebored barrel.  Both of the rifles in the pictures below list an “R&R” in the factory ledger records with the same order number as shown marked on the barrel.

Bert

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December 10, 2020
10:04 pm
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win4575 said
Winchester would not “rebore” a barrel.  It would be much cheaper for the customer, to have the barrel changed to a different caliber.  This is especially true in respects to the gun in question.  It was a saddle ring “carbine” taken from a rack in the warehouse and changed to an octagon barreled rifle in .45-60.  If left alone and shipped as a carbine in .40-60, it would be an extremely rare gun and probably much more desirable.  Very few ’76 carbines were shipped in this caliber.  

My quest is to understand Houze’s use of the term “rebore”. On page 132, under “Arms Altered Prior To Shipments” he uses “Rebarreled” for Express Rifles, he says “Rebarreled and changed to .40-60 Caliber”. Then on Page 149, for .40-60 Caliber, under “Arms Altered Prior To Shipment” “Carbines Rebored to .45-60 Caliber”.

I was just trying to figure out his specific use of “Rebore” to “Rebarreled”, and he was specific in most areas if it was “Rebored” and or “Rebarreled”, and in some cases refers to “rechamebring”.

 

Maybe it’s the Lawyer in me, and I get fixated on use of words, as I am sure to Houze, they had very different meanings for him.

December 10, 2020
10:11 pm
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Knowing Herbert Houze, if he stated “rebored”, that is exactly what he meant.  He very certainly knew the technical difference between “rebarrelled” and “rebored”.

Bert

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December 10, 2020
10:50 pm
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JustinG said

My quest is to understand Houze’s use of the term “rebore”. On page 132, under “Arms Altered Prior To Shipments” he uses “Rebarreled” for Express Rifles, he says “Rebarreled and changed to .40-60 Caliber”. Then on Page 149, for .40-60 Caliber, under “Arms Altered Prior To Shipment” “Carbines Rebored to .45-60 Caliber”.

I was just trying to figure out his specific use of “Rebore” to “Rebarreled”, and he was specific in most areas if it was “Rebored” and or “Rebarreled”, and in some cases refers to “rechamebring”.

 

Maybe it’s the Lawyer in me, and I get fixated on use of words, as I am sure to Houze, they had very different meanings for him.  

I don’t have the 1876 book by Houze but as per factory letter, it was a carbine as entered in the assembled ledger records & shipped to warehouse Sept 7/1886 but, it went back to the assembly room before final shipment from warehouse(most likely at the request of the customer who ordered it or the dealer) and was converted to a Rifle configuration with the carbine saddle ring retained & with a caliber change. Carbine to rifle means a different barrel, mag tube, & stamped carrier block with the new caliber, but they still used the original serialized receiver. It was finally shipped Nov 20 in the new configuration(oct barrel-45-60 cal-crescent butt) as it is today.

RickC

December 11, 2020
12:34 am
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Rick

 

I’m not trying to discredit your wonderful 76. I’m green with envy over it. I was just questioning the book you posted a section of as it did not seem to flow with the letter. 
I was sold my 76 as being referenced in the book and it was not so. 

The book is very hard to find. I got mine from Australia and it was $275 US. I am not sure why, but they are…. or were last summer…. hard to find at a decent price. 

The book is good, but for the price, …. that’s a bird of a different color. 

Again, please take no offense from my questions, no nefarious intentions. Just trying to reconcile his use of words.  

December 11, 2020
1:12 am
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JustinG said
Rick

 

I’m not trying to discredit your wonderful 76. I’m green with envy over it. I was just questioning the book you posted a section of as it did not seem to flow with the letter. 
I was sold my 76 as being referenced in the book and it was not so. 

The book is very hard to find. I got mine from Australia and it was $275 US. I am not sure why, but they are…. or were last summer…. hard to find at a decent price. 

The book is good, but for the price, …. that’s a bird of a different color. 

Again, please take no offense from my questions, no nefarious intentions. Just trying to reconcile his use of words.    

Justin I didn’t take it that way at all. I feel lucky to own this rare Winchester saddle ring rifle & it’s a 1 of 1 unless another surfaces. I’ll still be happy with a 1 of 2.

I did find a 1876 book new without dust cover for $180 + shipping but found that expensive when they were originally $59.99.

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