March 31, 2015
I have a Model 1903 serialized about 1916, serial 94480, that has TWO proof marks on its barrel just in front of the receiver. The first mark is a circled P and the 2nd mark which actually appears to slightly overlap the circled P is a circled PW. Can anyone explain what these two marks together signify? There is also a circled PW mark on the receiver.
If I recall correctly, Schwing says that a Model 90 with a circled P on its barrel indicates that it is a Winchester barrel not installed by the factory and that barrels installed at the factory bore a circled PW mark. If these two marks have the same meaning on the 1903, why both marks on the same barrel?
Sorry I don't know how to post a photo; however, the gun is pictured in Madis at p. 547. That photo, however, does not show the proof marks on the barrel and simply describes the gun as having a bird's eye maple stock and nickel plated receiver.
Thanks for any insight you may be able to provide re these markings being together.
June 5, 2015
May indicate a factory replacement barrel. There have been many discussions on this. Nothing is written in stone when it comes to how things were done at Winchester.
The circle P, a mailorder barrel. The WP a Winchester proofed original barrel. Both, a Winchester installed replacement one. They are usually found on guns worked on after the time the factory stop keeping detail records on individual guns. As far as I know, which isn't much.
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