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September 24, 2017 - 10:31 pm
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Found a nice enough 72 at my local Cabelas yesterday, did my research last night and headed back down to buy it today. (I bought a second copy of the Red Book in Cody to keep in my truck but hadn’t unpacked and deployed it yet.Wink) I’m a bit concerned about the wood, seem to remember it being better but looked at a few yesterday, could be confused. I’ll start with a much-needed scrubbing and decide where to go from there.

 

IMG_0251.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_0257.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_0256.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_0255.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_0250.JPGImage EnlargerBest for last!

 

Have a few more photos bouncing around in cyberspace, will post when they come home to roost. 😉

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September 24, 2017 - 11:14 pm
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You did great at $149.  The stock is a bit scruffy and it has had sling swivels added at some point but the 72 is an accurate, reliable .22.  Judging from your photos yours was made somewhere between 1946 and late 1948. Can narrow that down a bit more with some additional details.

Great project rifle – Congrats!

Regards,

WACA Life Member #6284 - Specializing in Pre-64 Winchester .22 Rimfire

http://rimfirepublications.com/  

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September 24, 2017 - 11:24 pm
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“Sling swivel” holes look like cup hook holes or something similar, very small. I thought about fixing the holes but decided against it. Wood cleaned up nice; scraped the paint off with a sharp pocket knife and cleaned with mineral spirits. Just applied the first coat of tung oil and the water spots are almost invisible. Very little rust, almost no pitting. I think just a little elbow grease will make this little “garage gun” into a pretty decent rifle.

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Smokeless powder is a passing fad! -Steve Garbe
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Some of my favorite recipes start out with a handful of depleted counterbalance devices.-TXGunNut
Presbyopia be damned, I'm going to shoot this thing! -TXGunNut
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September 24, 2017 - 11:43 pm
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You can’t go wrong with a pre-64 Winchester .22.  Looking forward to seeing your “after” pictures.

Best Regards,

WACA Life Member #6284 - Specializing in Pre-64 Winchester .22 Rimfire

http://rimfirepublications.com/  

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September 24, 2017 - 11:50 pm
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I dunno, Jeff. Second set of pics still bouncing around somewhere. New phone likes to fight with my laptop just like my old one did. Latest business venture Is going to require a new printer. Laptop wouldn’t allow me to attach a Word document until I converted it to a pdf. Some days I feel like I need an IT staff, on my best days I can barely spell “IT” Wink

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Presbyopia be damned, I'm going to shoot this thing! -TXGunNut
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September 25, 2017 - 3:04 am
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Other pics finally showed up. Forgot to mention, had a few Cabela’s points saved up and a coupon lying round. This little jewel cost me a little less than a case of shotgun shells.Laugh

 

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Light spots in first pic almost gone now, should be all but gone after a bit of scraping and a few more coats of tung oil.

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Presbyopia be damned, I'm going to shoot this thing! -TXGunNut
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September 25, 2017 - 6:45 am
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I picked up a model 72′ with with 80a peep sight for $189 including shipping, last week. Then found a 69A which is in need of some cleaning and such for $40 at my FFL dealer when I picked up the 72. I’m in need of the safety spring and ball for the 69, if I remember correctly the way it works. Can they be found?

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Teddy Roosevelt 

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September 25, 2017 - 1:08 pm
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Great finds, Vince! That’s what I like about Winchester 22’s, they are generally very good little guns and are often undervalued (IMHO) by the sellers. Another trend I’ve noticed is that some otherwise good rifles need some minor repairs and I enjoy those little jobs.

Good luck on your parts quest, Vince!

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September 25, 2017 - 3:57 pm
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Just made a trade on a near mint M72. A Colt Peacemaker 22 NIB that I was into for around $500. I have another pre “A” and a minty, late grooved M72-A, I gave $240 with 6% tax added. On top of the “A” sits a correct period Weaver B6. Great for a scope with the grooved receiver.

Try to find a set of original Winchester swivels to fill those holes. Repro’s or aftermarket swivels just won’t do. Filling in the holes is a terrible option too.

As stated, these rifles are super accurate. Pretty much a M69-A with the tube feed. Enjoy your new treasure.    Big Larry

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September 27, 2017 - 2:22 am
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72 all ready to go back together, third coat of tung oil is drying and a stubborn bit of something has departed the bore after a bit of persuasion. Wink Bit of surface rust is gone without a trace and it looks like a different gun. Considered polishing the patina off the bolt but decided against it. Wood looks pretty nice, water marks notwithstanding. They are pretty hard to see now. Even scrubbed the dirt out of the hard rubber butt plate. Thinking about test-firing the barreled action but it’s 9:25 on a school night. Wink Would have been done sooner but was trying to install my new wireless printer. After I putzed thru the procedure a few times it pretty much installed itself, all I did was change one setting….I think. Confused

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Smokeless powder is a passing fad! -Steve Garbe
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Presbyopia be damned, I'm going to shoot this thing! -TXGunNut
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September 29, 2017 - 11:43 pm
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As promised I took some “after”pics after putting it back together, weather a bit gloomy but gave it a shot anyway. Haven’t tried posting iPad pics. Maybe I’ll figure it out.

 

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Smokeless powder is a passing fad! -Steve Garbe
I hate rude behavior in a man. I won't tolerate it. -Woodrow F. Call, Lonesome Dove
Some of my favorite recipes start out with a handful of depleted counterbalance devices.-TXGunNut
Presbyopia be damned, I'm going to shoot this thing! -TXGunNut
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September 30, 2017 - 12:53 pm
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It looks good, great job!

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http://rimfirepublications.com/  

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September 30, 2017 - 11:39 pm
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JWA said
It looks good, great job!

Regards,  

Thanks, Jeff. Function test went well Thursday….neighbors’ dogs weren’t too happy about it but I’m OK with that. WinkThink I’ll take it to the range tomorrow.

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October 3, 2017 - 5:02 pm
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TXGunNut said

Thanks, Jeff. Function test went well Thursday….neighbors’ dogs weren’t too happy about it but I’m OK with that. WinkThink I’ll take it to the range tomorrow.  

 

Well, did it go “bang” and hit the paper? Laugh

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http://rimfirepublications.com/  

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October 3, 2017 - 8:43 pm
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I sold that M72 I told you about. The one with the bent bolt handle. My friend Tom took it to the range and shot out the 10 and X ring with it at 50 yards. So, I sold it to him. Real nice 98% rifle.   Big Larry

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October 3, 2017 - 10:45 pm
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JWA said

 

Well, did it go “bang” and hit the paper? Laugh

Regards,  

Nope, didn’t make it past the trap field all weekend, Jeff. EmbarassedHeaded out in the morning to try again, weather permitting.

Not sure how long I’ll keep this 72, Big Larry. It may find a home about 300 miles south of here, hard to say. If mine shoots half as well as yours I may have to keep it. We’ll see.

 

Mike

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October 3, 2017 - 11:19 pm
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TXGunNut said

Nope, didn’t make it past the trap field all weekend, Jeff. EmbarassedHeaded out in the morning to try again, weather permitting.

Not sure how long I’ll keep this 72, Big Larry. It may find a home about 300 miles south of here, hard to say. If mine shoots half as well as yours I may have to keep it. We’ll see.

 

Mike  

 

Since yours is a 72 and doesn’t have the improved lifter and feed angle of the 72A you may find it is slightly more accurate by manually single-loading a round into the chamber.  The earlier 72’s have a slight tendency to shave the bullet lip if the bolt is aggressively cycled which may (or may not) affect accuracy.  Since they were not really designed as target guns this is normally not an issue but if you are trying to stretch the utmost accuracy out of it you might try it.

Bottom line is to have fun with it so we can get you hooked on more Winchester .22’s Wink

Best Regards

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October 4, 2017 - 1:58 am
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Good to know, Jeff. Test fire was in very low light so didn’t notice any feeding issues. Will watch for that tomorrow.

Seems I’m already hooked on Winchester .22’s. Pretty sure I only have four at the moment but my current financial situation precludes any of the pricier collector pieces in the near future. Trying to get a startup business off the ground and the only thing I know for sure is that my “play money” account has been re-allocated.

It’s hard to beat the value of old Winchester .22’s. They’re fun, well made, relatively inexpensive to shoot and quite possibly good investments. They also don’t require time in the loading room like most of my centerfire rifles.

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Smokeless powder is a passing fad! -Steve Garbe
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October 4, 2017 - 2:56 am
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Yep, for the price of one nice 1886 you can have a .22 pump, bolt, lever and semi-auto plinker as well as a good match rifle.  Even if you shoot Eley red box it is still cheaper than some of the cowboy calibers.

They are the only Winchesters I can afford.

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October 9, 2017 - 12:17 am
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Finally got the 72 to the range, awesome day for it! Funniest thing, this little rifle is a hoot to shoot and it really likes the cheapo Winchester 333 pack ammo. Groups of the cheap stuff are half the size of the groups it shoots with the Norma match ammo; now there’s a rifle after this old tightwad’s heart, lol. I could keep groups right around an inch @ fifty yards with the tiny semi-buckhorn sights, that’s about as good as my old eyes could shoot today. Took a few rounds to get the magazine feeding smoothly but now it works like a champ.

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Presbyopia be damned, I'm going to shoot this thing! -TXGunNut
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