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Faked/Altered Model 61 Rifle Listing
April 15, 2018
5:59 pm
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This has been a hard month for Model 61 collectors looking for high condition and unique chamber and barrel configurations.   I have identified 3 rifles in just this month which started out their life as standard round barrel short, long, and long rifle chambers.  Then they mysteriously show up with either round barrel LR Shot Only or octagon barrel rifles in later auction or website offerings.  So, in an effort to help out the collecting community of these cool little guns I have decided to start a list of the known serial numbers that have been altered/faked.  These are rifles which have been deliberately altered, most commonly by swapping or replacing barrels to make what was a standard rifle into a single chamber alternative.   This list DOES NOT  include the many many rifles which have been refinished or had wood sanded and refinished.   Keep this post archived and when you see something "to good to be true" you just might want to take a look here.   I will update this as  I dig through all my data and spread sheet info.  If anyone has any suggestion or further input  I am more than happy to hear it.

Thanks.  Michael

For starters:

1331  Added 16 October 2018  https://winchestercollector.org/forum/winchester-22-rim-fire/yet-another-faked-model-61-on-guns-international/#p75709

3863

4146

9316  Added 25 Sept 2019   https://winchestercollector.org/forum/winchester-22-rim-fire/restored-model-61-at-montrose-sept-2019-1272/#p85336

12234

18775  Added 16 April 2018

22217  Added 12 Oct 2018  https://winchestercollector.org/forum/winchester-22-rim-fire/faked-ob-red-letter-model-61-at-morphy/#p75595

29978

32154

38034

45030

50787  Added 18 June 2018

63529  Added 2 Aug 2018  https://winchestercollector.org/forum/winchester-22-rim-fire/fake-model-61-short-only-on-guns-int/#p74159

64388

67623

77275  Added 30 Nov 2018  Read the description VERY carefully!!   https://www.rockislandauction.com/detail/72/364/winchester-model-61-slide-action-rifle

80472  Added 30 Nov 2018  Not "proven" but HIGHLY suspect.  Seller has listed numerous proven fakes.  See remark #25 in this thread.

83093  Altered from standard rifle to Short Only and "WINCHESTER" engraved gallery port  Added 1 Oct 2018  For sale by "Irish No 2" on Guns Int.

95787

98030

128172   Standard rifle faked as Shot Only w/ box  by Steve Barnett.  $6500  6 June 2018

128982  Not "proven" but HIGHLY suspect

129280

140091  Barrel switched from LR to LR Shot Only. Previously listed at Mike Bishop now at RIA  Added Aug 23 2018

154400  Barrel switched from standard to Short Only.  Originally sold on GB out of Christiansburg, VA.  Faked at "Winchester Guns" in Jamestown, CA.  Added July 9, 2019

154602  Added Oct 4 2019 Originally sold out of Remlap, AL on Gunbroker as a standard rifle. Purchased in Nov 2013 at Tulsa from CH Key as a RB Long Rifle only. Yet ANOTHER CH Key related fake.

161484  Not "proven" but HIGHLY suspect

161680

264765  Standard rifle faked as Shot Only  Added 13 Oct 2018  Offered at Morphy  https://winchestercollector.org/forum/winchester-22-rim-fire/almost-comical-another-faked-model-61-morphy/#p75635

282663

300626 Added 16 April 2018

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Model 1892 / Model 61 Collector, Research, Valuation

April 16, 2018
2:28 am
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What is your opinion of Rock Island Auction #649 held this week end?  I had them send a picture of the "WRF" stamp on the front of the receiver below the magazine tube.  It is double stamped and crooked.  The serial number for the rifle is 179525.  RDB

April 16, 2018
3:29 am
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Thanks for the info. 32154 is up for auction next Sunday and I was going to bid on the gun 

but not now! 

Thanks gerald

April 16, 2018
10:51 am
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Deluxe 76 said
Thanks for the info. 32154 is up for auction next Sunday and I was going to bid on the gun 

but not now! 

Thanks gerald  

Hello Gerald,

I am glad that you are now better informed.  SN 32154 was previously sold on Gunbroker as a standard rifle out of Union, Kentucky.  It showed up in the RIA Feb 2018 auction as lot 827 with an OB 22 LR barrel on it!!  (The catalog did say some major parts were replaced)   Where is it being auctioned next weekend?

Michael

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Model 1892 / Model 61 Collector, Research, Valuation

April 16, 2018
11:37 am
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rogertherelic said
What is your opinion of Rock Island Auction #649 held this week end?  I had them send a picture of the "WRF" stamp on the front of the receiver below the magazine tube.  It is double stamped and crooked.  The serial number for the rifle is 179525.  RDB  

Good morning Roger,

At first glance the rifle looks real nice.  BUT, you have to ask yourself for a rifle described as "Extremely fine. The rifle retains 98% plus showing some light cycling marks."  why then was the wood in need of being refinished as is mentioned in the catalogue???   

And here is something I find VERY interesting in my data.  Between SN 152404 and 187218 (34,814 rifles) I have cataloged 397 specimens.  The production is dominated by standard round barrel plane Jane rifles.  But there are 7 Rifles scattered about that are RB 22 WRF chambered.  And guess what, 4 of those were sold out of RIA, 2 out of Little Johns, and 1 at Julia's!!!!!!   WHY is it that only the large auction houses have access to these "rare" rifles????  My personal feeling is that I would be suspect of all of them.   

But wait!!!  It gets even more crazy!  Within this same interval there are 14 rifles chambered in 22 LR Shot Only and 4 rifles chambered 22 RB Short only.  Of the 14 LR guns there were 6 sold out of RIA, 2 from Julia, and 2 from Steve Barnett.  Of the 4 Short Only rifles 1 from Julia, 1 from Little Johns, 1 from Steve Barnett, and one at Montrose auction.   And I just found another fake offered by Steve Barnett.  SN 128172.  Started as a rough standard rifle and faked as "Shot Only" w/ box for $6500.  June 6, 2018

Call me highly skeptical, but I find it extremely hard to believe that all these guns are out of "premier collections" and thus only offered via large auction houses.  Especially if/when they are not portrayed that way in catalogues.  So if you look at the totals of the WRF, LR Only, and RB Short Only guns in this range there are a total of 21 desirable single chamber rifles that just also happen to be in really nice condition because the original owners just happen to never use them (my sarcasm) and 10 (almost half) were sold out of RIA, 3 sold out of Little Johns, 3 sold out of Julia's and 3 from Steve Barnett.   So that is 19 out of 21 sold out of very specific and consistent sources.  

Right now I am feeling REAL GOOD that I never bought a high condition Model 61 rifle from these sources.  And for my fellow survey takers I learned this.  If you keep track of enough information you never know what you might be able to figure out.

i hope all this helps guys.

Michael

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Model 1892 / Model 61 Collector, Research, Valuation

April 16, 2018
5:08 pm
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Hello Michael,

The 61 is being sold at Bauer Auction Service. It's advertised as OB LR barrel. I know Hank Bauer personally and will inform him of this fake. Hank has four firearms auctions a year. He usually has nine hundred plus guns and of that maybe ten to fifteen high quality winchesters available. Most of his firearms are run of the mill weapons. I do know of one bidder there who goes to RIA regularly. I'm going to find out if it's his gun up for auction.

I have over twenty model 61s of every variety and always looking for more to add to my collection. Many of these I bought from a friend who had serial number 1 which I thought was cool.

Once again, thanks for your efforts. Gerald

April 16, 2018
5:31 pm
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Deluxe 76 said
Hello Michael,

The 61 is being sold at Bauer Auction Service. It's advertised as OB LR barrel. I know Hank Bauer personally and will inform him of this fake. Hank has four firearms auctions a year. He usually has nine hundred plus guns and of that maybe ten to fifteen high quality winchesters available. Most of his firearms are run of the mill weapons. I do know of one bidder there who goes to RIA regularly. I'm going to find out if it's his gun up for auction.

I have over twenty model 61s of every variety and always looking for more to add to my collection. Many of these I bought from a friend who had serial number 1 which I thought was cool.

Once again, thanks for your efforts. Gerald  

Thanks much for the info Gerald.   I found the auction and have updated my spreadsheet and added images to my files.  Do I have data on all of your rifles in my survey so far?

Michael

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Model 1892 / Model 61 Collector, Research, Valuation

April 16, 2018
7:31 pm
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No, but I will get the info to you.

Gerald

April 16, 2018
7:41 pm
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Deluxe 76 said
No, but I will get the info to you.

Gerald  

Thanks Gerald.   That would be great!!  https://winchestercollector.org/forum/winchester-research-surveys/model-61-research-survey-1/

Michael

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Model 1892 / Model 61 Collector, Research, Valuation

April 17, 2018
3:04 am
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twobit said

i hope all this helps guys.

Michael  

Michael,  It sure does.

Thanks for all your bird dogging.

Much appreciated.

Jolly

June 6, 2018
2:49 pm
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New rifle added to list.  See this thread:  https://winchestercollector.org/forum/winchester-22-rim-fire/

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Model 1892 / Model 61 Collector, Research, Valuation

June 18, 2018
2:11 pm
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I have just updated the listing and will ask the same question regarding the thread.  Would you all like this to be a "Sticky" topic in the forum?

Michael

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Model 1892 / Model 61 Collector, Research, Valuation

June 18, 2018
4:36 pm
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Yes, that would be very helpful!

Sticky please!

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June 18, 2018
8:39 pm
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Thank you very much- And I would second , third or whatever that!!

June 18, 2018
9:28 pm
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Agreed. I can see the need for a thread on other models as well but the 61 would be a good start. Still can’t help but wonder if someone has a stash of NOS Winchester parts lying about somewhere. 

 

Mike

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June 18, 2018
9:52 pm
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Michael,

I vote for a sticky on this subject as well.

Thanks.

Al

June 20, 2018
4:43 am
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Done.  I have Pinned the topic.

Bert

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June 20, 2018
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Bert H. said
Done.  I have Pinned the topic.

Bert  

Thanks Bert!   

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Model 1892 / Model 61 Collector, Research, Valuation

July 28, 2018
10:17 am
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Have read your findings on model 61's and it scares me now to look at rare stuff.  I traded for this old model 61 years ago at a gun show.  I didn't think much about it till I ran into Bob Reed at the Houston Gun Collectors Show a year or so ago.  He said he had never seen one with a barrel this short.  I am attaching some pictures for review, and would like any comments you may have on this rifle.  It is barrel marked on both sides and is marked S,L, or LR.  The patina is even all over (no blue really left), and appears all original to me.  Maybe you can see something I can't.  If you need more information, let me know.

thanks for looking at this (Trapper version) of a model 61- Maybe LaughIMG_0385.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_0386.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_0388.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_0389.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_0390.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_0391.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_0392.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_0393.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_0394.JPGImage Enlarger

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Andy Kessner
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July 28, 2018
1:47 pm
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Good morning,

Your rifle was manufactured during 1937.  My guess is that the barrel and magazine have been cut down and it is not factory original.  I have cataloged just over 5300 individual Model 61's and never seen a duplicate.   The barrel inscriptions, slide length, and D&T upper tang are all correct for its time period.  The barrel was shortened to just behind the original second magazine retaining band and the magazine shortened from the receiver end placing the loading port jut below the second retaining band.  Most likely the spring on the magazine follower was also shortened.  You might compare the front sight placement relative to the muzzle face with a non altered rifle.  It looks pretty close to correct but could be off a bit.

Michael

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