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I finally got my first Winchester Model 63!
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September 23, 2022 - 2:24 am
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I traded a 2002 Model 94AE in .44 Mag for it.  Some said that I got the losing end of the deal, but I beg to differ.  I’ve been wanting a Model 63 for the longest time but have not found one in decent enough condition.  A Model 94 AE, made in 2002, is not a Winchester to me.

 

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September 24, 2022 - 4:56 pm
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Me too.  Finally found one I thought was in good condition.  It sure does look good with great bluing and stock expertly refinished.   I ended up having to replace firing pin which is likely why it was sold to me.  It is deadly accurate and shoots good for the first two magazines and then it will not feed a cartridge into the chamber.  It will jam half way through the cycle.  I clean it and it shoots great for the first two magazines and then it jams half way through the cycle.  I have exhausted what parts replacing knowledge I have, so does anyone out there know of and can recommend a good gunsmith that KNOWS THE WINCHESTER MOD. 63 rifle?  I love the thing, but it is aggravating to have to clean it every 20 rounds.  

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September 24, 2022 - 11:53 pm
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Well, I haven’t shot mine yet.  I would look at YouTube first and see if there’s a video that might help you.  Otherwise, I’m sure there are other members on this sight that can help as well.  You should also try to post your issue on the Rimfirecentral forum.

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September 25, 2022 - 4:18 pm
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Many thanks retired.  I had already looked at 5 or 6 you tube videos before I came here where the REAL EXPERTS are located.  I am somewhat of a gun tinkerer and have been fixing and repairing them since about 1958 and have had many model 63’s apart for one reason or another.  Yesterday I got down in my workshop and began to cycle a cartridge though the action slowly and notice where it was hanging up.  So I smoothed up a small burr on the bolt face with some 1500 grit paper and now at least, it will load cartridges from the magazine into the chamber with no issues.  I’ll take it to the range tomorrow and see how it works there.  If it doesn’t, I’ll be back here asking for help, but for now, I think it will work fine.  It has worked fine before.

 

As a did-ja-know, the problem started when I had just loaded the magazine and pushed the action rod to put a cartridge into the chamber.  About halfway thorough that, my dang finger slipped off and of course the bolt slammed forward and jammed the cartridge.  It would not work at all after that.  It must have thrown up a small burr when that happened, or WHO KNOWS??  It didn’t like that treatment and refused to work.  Now it does cycle like it supposed to when I operate the action by hand.  Time will tell.  Thanks for the reply and all the best to you.

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September 30, 2022 - 5:21 pm
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As I have learned, it was NOT A BURR that was the problem.  It was the action rod return spring that somehow got bent when my finger slipped off and the action went forward suddenly.  I think.  I don’t know how that dern spring got all discombobulated like that.  

So I took my 63 back to the range yesterday.  Ran one magazine with no issues and the first cartridge from second magazine jammed when I moved the action rod rearward to chamber the first cartridge.   Discovered when action rod was pushed all the way back, the bolt did not go all the way back and could not pick up the cartridge from the magazine without jamming. Lacked about 3/8 of an inch to go all the way back.  Opened it up and THIS TIME I took EVERYTHING apart and examined it LIKE I SHOULD HAVE the first time.  Then I discovered the action rod return spring was bent all wrong about halfway down.  I failed to remove it from the action rod housing the first time I looked for the problem so I could not see that it was bent all wrong and was wadding up inside of the housing.  So I carefully straightened it with needle nose plyers as best that I could without breaking it and put back in rifle.  Then bolt goes all the way back.  The action rod itself is too short to move the bolt all the way back by design.  Correct function depends on the action rod return spring compressing exactly enough to force the bolt all the way back.  When the return spring was bent wrong, it would nor compress enough to accomplish that.  Coil springs don’t usually function very well after bending them the wrong way as I have learned, even after straightening them out.  They just don’t seem to ever work correctly with any kind of reliability after that.  Some will and some will not.  Older springs usually do not.  This one is 79 years old. 

So after carefully straightening and reinstalling it THE CORRECT WAY (You can’t just put it in the action rod housing and install the forearm) it worked. At least it did for one magazine cycle and jammed again when I pushed the action rod back to chamber the first round from the magazine.  So I ordered a new action rod return spring from Homestead Parts (look them up).  It cost about 5 bucks plus shipping.  As soon as it arrives, I’ll install it THE CORRECT WAY and let you boys know how it works.  This action looks a lot simpler than it really is and that is why all model 63’s say right on the barrel “22 LR Super Speed and Super-X.”  The action has a recoil spring BUT A BIG PART of harnessing the recoil impulse is that big, heavy hammer and the inertia required to move it. THAT IS WHY it says to use Super Speed or Super-X.  Today of course we can use any high speed ammo, but mine WILL NOT run any standard velocity ammo reliably.   It was not made to do that.  However, it ran all high speed ammo with no issues until I messed up the darn action rod return spring.  I’ll get it back up and running with the new spring and let you know how it works then.  Or if it does not.  

 

By the way, my rifle was the LAST ONE made in 1943 according to the serial number listed on the Winchester information.  If I recall correctly, they only made 124 of them that year because of course, Winchester was busy making arms for our military as we were in the middle of WWII.  I was born August 8, 1942, one day after my dad went ashore on Guadalcanal with the Marines. So I am an old coot but so is my rifle and we get along together just fine.  Sure wish I could see a little better though and I had to scope it but I dang sure didn’t want to. I believe my rifle is doing better with aging than I am.  It still shoots straight as an arrow.  I am a little more wobbley.  Okay.  A lot more wobbley.

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September 30, 2022 - 7:03 pm
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David,

What is the serial number on your Model 63?  Per the original Winchester records, production of the Model 63 was suspended on November 2nd, 1942 (at serial number 55835) to support the WW II efforts.  Production was resumed on August 18th, 1945 at serial number 55836.  The final serial number in the year 1945 was 57994 (12/26/1945).

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October 1, 2022 - 4:35 am
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Hope you got it running, David. I’ve had a couple nice 63’s, one too nice to shoot and another carbine that shot a very unlucky fly at 50 yards with peep sights and 60 year old presbyopic eyes. There’s a thread with pics around here somewhere, I wouldn’t have believed it but I have pics and a reputable spotter.

The 63 is in many ways Winchester’s premiere 22 Sporter. Hope yours works out for you.

 

Mike

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October 1, 2022 - 3:50 pm
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David Hendry said
As I have learned, it was NOT A BURR that was the problem.  It was the action rod return spring that somehow got bent when my finger slipped off and the action went forward suddenly.  I think.  I don’t know how that dern spring got all discombobulated like that.  

So I took my 63 back to the range yesterday.  Ran one magazine with no issues and the first cartridge from second magazine jammed when I moved the action rod rearward to chamber the first cartridge.   Discovered when action rod was pushed all the way back, the bolt did not go all the way back and could not pick up the cartridge from the magazine without jamming. Lacked about 3/8 of an inch to go all the way back.  Opened it up and THIS TIME I took EVERYTHING apart and examined it LIKE I SHOULD HAVE the first time.  Then I discovered the action rod return spring was bent all wrong about halfway down.  I failed to remove it from the action rod housing the first time I looked for the problem so I could not see that it was bent all wrong and was wadding up inside of the housing.  So I carefully straightened it with needle nose plyers as best that I could without breaking it and put back in rifle.  Then bolt goes all the way back.  The action rod itself is too short to move the bolt all the way back by design.  Correct function depends on the action rod return spring compressing exactly enough to force the bolt all the way back.  When the return spring was bent wrong, it would nor compress enough to accomplish that.  Coil springs don’t usually function very well after bending them the wrong way as I have learned, even after straightening them out.  They just don’t seem to ever work correctly with any kind of reliability after that.  Some will and some will not.  Older springs usually do not.  This one is 79 years old. 

So after carefully straightening and reinstalling it THE CORRECT WAY (You can’t just put it in the action rod housing and install the forearm) it worked. At least it did for one magazine cycle and jammed again when I pushed the action rod back to chamber the first round from the magazine.  So I ordered a new action rod return spring from Homestead Parts (look them up).  It cost about 5 bucks plus shipping.  As soon as it arrives, I’ll install it THE CORRECT WAY and let you boys know how it works.  This action looks a lot simpler than it really is and that is why all model 63’s say right on the barrel “22 LR Super Speed and Super-X.”  The action has a recoil spring BUT A BIG PART of harnessing the recoil impulse is that big, heavy hammer and the inertia required to move it. THAT IS WHY it says to use Super Speed or Super-X.  Today of course we can use any high speed ammo, but mine WILL NOT run any standard velocity ammo reliably.   It was not made to do that.  However, it ran all high speed ammo with no issues until I messed up the darn action rod return spring.  I’ll get it back up and running with the new spring and let you know how it works then.  Or if it does not.  

 

By the way, my rifle was the LAST ONE made in 1943 according to the serial number listed on the Winchester information.  If I recall correctly, they only made 124 of them that year because of course, Winchester was busy making arms for our military as we were in the middle of WWII.  I was born August 8, 1942, one day after my dad went ashore on Guadalcanal with the Marines. So I am an old coot but so is my rifle and we get along together just fine.  Sure wish I could see a little better though and I had to scope it but I dang sure didn’t want to. I believe my rifle is doing better with aging than I am.  It still shoots straight as an arrow.  I am a little more wobbley.  Okay.  A lot more wobbley.

Dave, I was 2 years old when my Dad landed in Okinawa with the 7th Marines. Semper Fi to your Dad from this old Marine even though he may have passed.

In my collection, I have two M63’s.  Both post war. Both are 99%ers. The reason I have two is one is the very late one with the scope grooves. Looked for a long time for one of those elusive rifles and it was cheap considering. Thanks for sharing.   Big Larry USMCR (60-68).

  

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