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Inquiry about the year of manufacture of a Winchester Model 1894 rifle
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November 28, 2021 - 1:11 pm
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I bought a old winchester rifle model 1894 ser. No. 82431 .
It was just marked for Germany with the required proof marks “CIP N” (laser tags). I use it for target shooting as a sport shooter.
I am aware that the rifle is not expensive or rare. I would like to own a Winchester Rifle that is as old and authentic as possible.
I have been trying to determine the age. According to the serial number, I found the production year on the Winchester website to be 1887. According to the WACA website, the production year listed is 1900. Since the rifle has the “Hallmark of Quality ” it should be built after 1905?
Maybe the serial number is not correct? I have attached some photos of the rifle. Can anyone please help me? Laugh

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November 28, 2021 - 2:01 pm
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I don’t specialize in 1894’s but I can say the 1900 date is correct from the search engine WACA has on its site.  The 1887 date is obviously in error by some means, either by your input or the output of data as the 1894 wasn’t in existence at that time.  If you are particularly curious see if you can at least get a serial number search on the rifle from Jesi Bennett at the firearms records office in Cody.  Could be that your rifle had an “R and R” and been proofed at that time.  Tim 

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November 28, 2021 - 4:24 pm
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Thank you, I will try this! 🙂

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November 28, 2021 - 5:43 pm
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2 observations.  Someone has done some file work in the area of the serial number and a possible double strike on the first numeral.  The magazine tube looks to be longer than the barrel.

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November 28, 2021 - 5:51 pm
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Hello,

To me the most glaring “problem” with the gun is the mismatch between the implied DOM relating to the serial number and the style of the upper tang stamp.  A 5 digit gun should have the first style of tang stamp as in the attached image.  The style found on this rifle did not come int ouse until in the SN 750,000 range (Renneberg p.124) corresponding to a DOM in 1915 or later!  Another “problem” is the script style used in the serial number.  Early rifles had more rounded 2 and 3 digits that this rifle does not.  There is a darn good chance that the original first digit of the serial number has been removed making a 6 digit rifle a five digit rifle.  This would also then fit in line with the presence of the proof marks, the upper tang stamp style, The SN number font style, the left flat position of both the barrel address stamp and the caliber designation and the hammer style.  I am afraid that the rifle is not nearly as old nor as authentic as it was presented to you.

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Michael

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Model 1892 / Model 61 Collector, Research, Valuation

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November 28, 2021 - 5:57 pm
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Chuck said
2 observations.  Someone has done some file work in the area of the serial number and a possible double strike on the first numeral.  The magazine tube looks to be longer than the barrel.  

Absolutely with respect to the serial number.  Compare the flat surface areas just below the SN on the rifle in question with the two images I posted above and this one also.  No doubt that the number has been changed.

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Model 1892 / Model 61 Collector, Research, Valuation

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November 28, 2021 - 6:24 pm
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I would wager a large sum of $$$ that the original serial number was removed and a new number stamped in its place. 

As pointed out, the upper tang marking is of a later production period.   Winchester first began using the Type 4 Model 1894 marking in late 1914, and continued to use it until early 1920.

Bert

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November 28, 2021 - 7:07 pm
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First of all, many thanks to all.

After reading in the Winchester Book by Madis, I already had doubts about the authenticity of the serial number. That’s why I asked the experts here.
I just wanted to own a Winchester as old as possible. I bought it from the biggest German importer for US weapons, which should be renowned.

In Germany it is very difficult to buy older Winchester rifles (pre64) and they always cost a lot. In general, the acquisition of a weapon in Germany is extremely difficult and associated with many requirements.

With your help I assume that the rifle is from 1915-1921. The price paid would still have been okay here in Germany. Better don’t ask, for US prices it’s extortionate.

But I imagine something different under a renowned importer.
However, it is a pity that the serial number has been changed. I bought the gun not as a collector’s item but for the joy of shooting with as old a Winchester as possible, otherwise I would be extremely frustrated right now. But even though the gun is from 1921, it works fine and is also very accurate and fun to shoot.

Now I know how old the rifle is approximately 🙂
Many thanks again to all!

Magazine: When I bought the gun, the front magazine screw was broken and I replaced it (thanks to HOMESTEAD GUN). The magazine is now properly attached and slightly shorter than the barrel. I also replaced the existing cheap rear sight (folded sheet of tin) with an original from the pre64 era.

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November 29, 2021 - 6:00 pm
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Doc, there wasn’t a good picture of the rear sight.  It is a flat top but that is all I can make out.  A better picture may help.  It may turn out to be OK.

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November 29, 2021 - 7:02 pm
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The old one was a piece of folded tin. I bought a new “old” one which fits perfekt.(Rear Winchester Sporting No. 22B Semi-buckhorn ORIGINAL/Rear Elevator EARLY Winchester Lever action rifles; both from homesteadparts.com)

I “tuned” the old Lyman Frontside (Ivory Bead was Lost) with a gold knob 🙂

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