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Winchester 52
June 4, 2015
2:44 am
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June 4, 2015
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I’m seeking advice and knowledge regarding a model 52 I found at a gun shop while visiting my family in Montana.

The 52 has an aftermarket stock on it and had the original barrel cut from 26 to 18 inches (sad I know). The rest seems original, but I dont know how to identify it.

The serial number is in the 70k numbers and ends with a B. So does this mean it’s a 52B?

Also, the barrel seems VERY thick, almost like a double bull barrel. It’s over and inch thick at both ends.

I’m wondering what a fair offer would be for this rifle. Also, I’m wondering how to identify if it is anything more spectacular than a normal 52B such as a sporter or installed with the upgraded trigger. Anything I should look for?

Thank you!

June 5, 2015
2:53 am
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Wyoming - Gods Country
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Be patient on a response as there are not as many bolt action guys on here as there are lever fans. There are definitely some very knowledgeable 52 collectors that come on occasionally. If you don’t get any feedback in a day or so you might try to send a PM to a member that goes by the name “seewin”. He can likely answer any question you have about a 52.

~Gary~

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June 5, 2015
4:49 am
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Thank you! I will be patient since I assumed what you said about the majority liking the lever actions.

I did some more research and learned that it’s most likely a 52B bull gun made around 1951. Too bad the original owner lost the original wood and had the barrel cut! I’m sure it’s still a brilliant shooter, though.

Hoping for any information that can be provided to me!

June 5, 2015
2:17 pm
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The original barrels were 28″ long and not 26″. If your the same guy that has been asking questions on rimfirecentral then most of your questions should already have been answered. If the measurements that you gave on the other forum are correct then you have a 52B Bullgun thats been altered to the point that it has no collector value and would be regarded as a shooter class gun. I think the $500 that somebody else mentioned as a value is pretty much on que. I personally wouldn’t pay that much as I only collect mint unaltered 52’s but alot of people like having one of these guns to shoot or to hunt with.

June 5, 2015
4:41 pm
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Yes I’m the same guy asking there as well. Obviously I’m trying to get as much information about it as possible before agreeing to purchase the rifle.

I don’t really mind that it doesn’t have collector value anymore, I’m wanting to know if it would be a top notch shooter.

I have a flobert II action Anschutz (1451 ST) which does very well, so I’m looking for something at least on par or even more accurate than that. How would the 52B level up?

Thanks!

June 5, 2015
5:24 pm
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Model 52’s on average improved accuracy as the series went on. The C-D and E (especially the D and E series) seemed to deliver better accuracy and had better triggers than the previous Model 52’s. The D and E’s also have free floated barrels which incorporate the modern day thinking that a barrel free from pressure points will make for a more accurate gun. Don’t get me wrong as the 52B and the earlier model 52’s were some of the most accurate factory guns of their era but the more modern technology used in the late guns enhanced their preformance in the accuracy game. If this gun is local- I would see if the seller would let you try the gun out before purchase since its not of collector value- That way you could evaluate the guns preformance yourself. 

June 6, 2015
8:23 am
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June 4, 2015
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Thank you all for the replies! The seller decided to keep the gun for now (he seems to believe there is still collector value so he’s holding onto it). Maybe I should have educated him a bit with what I’ve learned, but hey if he likes it that much I won’t try to push him one way or the other.

Maybe one day I’ll run across another 52 that has everything I’m looking for!

June 7, 2015
12:10 am
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David Hackett said

Thank you all for the replies! The seller decided to keep the gun for now (he seems to believe there is still collector value so he’s holding onto it). Maybe I should have educated him a bit with what I’ve learned, but hey if he likes it that much I won’t try to push him one way or the other.

Maybe one day I’ll run across another 52 that has everything I’m looking for!

Dave, M52’s are quite common. Especially the “B” type. I think that is probably because Remington came out with a better rifle and trigger, the M37, and cut into Winchesters sales. Then Win. improved their triggers, and Rem. came out with the super accurate M40XB. I own 10 M52’s from 1927-1956, including  “B” and “C” BULLGUNS and I also own two M40’s, one one a 40XB and it shoots better at 100 yards than any of my M52’s. I would not personally throw $500 at a cut up M52 of any type. Save your $$$ and get a nice M52-C that is 100% original.   Big LarryYellYellYell

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