Avatar

Please consider registering
guest

Register | Lost password?
Advanced Search

— Forum Scope —






— Match —





— Forum Options —





Minimum search word length is 3 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters




sp_Feed Topic RSS sp_Print sp_TopicIcon
Model 70 Super Grade stock question
March 15, 2017
2:02 am
Avatar
Charleston, SC
WACA Member
Forum Posts: 253
Member Since:
November 5, 2014
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Colleagues-

I’m trying to date the serial number range over which a change occurred in the design of the pre-64 M70 Super Grade stock.  This particular detail is not described in the books, but is obvious when you look at the photos in them.

Compare the two attached photos of a couple of mine: 

 3748-16.JPGImage Enlarger50821-2.JPGImage Enlarger

Early in M70 production, the forward edge of the front sling swivel was about 1/4” from the back of the black fore end tip (SN 3748 on the left above).  Apparently, this led to a lot of wood splitting between the front of the swivel base and the fore end tip, so at some point the swivel base was moved backward to about 3/4” from the tip (SN 50821 on the right above).  This change was associated with a shortening of the fore end checkering pattern, and I suspect accounts for the change in the size of the diamond on the bottom of the fore end checkering pattern that is described in Rule’s book.

What I’m trying to discover is when this change was implemented and over what SN range it took effect.  So far I’ve got a few more than 70 cloverleaf tang type I and type II M70 Super Grades logged from looking at books, old auction catalogs, my own guns, and the input of a few friends.  The change appears to have taken place sometime in the pre-war period but with a fairly broad overlap between the first plausible appearance of the rearward position and the last plausible appearance of the forward position.  Need more data to narrow it down.

If anyone is willing to contribute, what I want to know is: 1) SG rifle versus SG carbine; 2) serial number; 3) action type (type I-1 through II-2); and 4) whether the front edge of the swivel base in about 1/4” or 3/4” back of the fore end tip. 

Anybody interested in this little question can provide the info via WACA PM, e-mail to luttrell@musc.edu, or of course a follow-up post.  Follow-ups with photos would be really helpful!!!  If/when I get to 100 cloverleaf tang M70 SG rifles I’ll post the results in follow up.

Thanks for looking!!!

Lou

sp_PlupAttachments Attachments

WACA 9519; Studying Pre-64 Model 70 Winchesters

WACA-Signauture-3.jpg

March 15, 2017
1:20 pm
Avatar
WACA Member
Forum Posts: 253
Member Since:
March 12, 2008
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Lou, I checked my S/G's last night. I found that 6377, and 19174 had 7/8" distance between the centerline of swivel base and forend tip joint line. Then I noticed that 57589, 63800, and 76676 had 1-3/8" distance. The balance of later guns had the more common 1-1/2" distance. I was aware of the differences in the early rifles and later ones, i.e. 7/8" and 1-1/2", however the 1-3/8" examples I had not noticed before. If it had only been 1 example, I would have written it off to an anomaly that slipped through production. However, with all 3 rifles grouped closely together in s/n range, I have to think it was a production change that lasted for a short time before the change to 1-1/2". 

I have the original blueprints for the S/G stocks, and cannot see where dimensions were officially changed during the production span, which does not make sense. It was late last night when I checked, and I will do a bit more research on drawings when time permits.

Steve

March 15, 2017
11:11 pm
Avatar
Charleston, SC
WACA Member
Forum Posts: 253
Member Since:
November 5, 2014
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Steve-

Thanks!!!   That's very helpful.  Yours all seem to fit in perfectly with what I've been able to gather so far.  I've got a half dozen type I and II M70 Supers, but only a couple of those fall into what I think is the relevant SN range for the transition between the two variations.  The two I pictured above, SN 3748 and 50821, are sufficiently before and after the changeover, respectively, to not be much help (I think).

As you know, so many M70s that present today as Super Grades didn't leave the factory in that configuration.  So any attempt to chronicle a production change in Super Grades by conducting a survey of existing rifles is likely to have a lot of "noise" in the data.  Since the difference between the 7/8" and 1 1/2" placement is easy to see in any decent side view, I started with rifles pictured in "the books" and available major auction house catalogs over the past decade or so.  In the latter case, I arbitrarily excluded any "refinished/refurbished" examples that I thought had "issues" (apart from stock style) that made them likely to be non-original.  In so doing, of course, I could have biased the survey, i.e. excluding rifles based on my personal opinion.  At least I was able to get all of Professor Van Ballenberghe's rifles that were in the 2014 Amoskeag auction b/c I'd saved all the catalog photos!!!

Anyway, from what I've got so far (and excluding a couple of extreme outliers on both ends), the earliest serial numbers with the later placement seem to be in the 13000-17000 range (roughly early to mid-1938 estimated production - not PR date).  After that there's a considerable period of either/or lasting until the 34000-36000 range (mid-1941 estimated production), after which the later 1 1/2" placement takes over.  But I've only rounded up 21 Super Grades that fall between the earliest (possibly believable) occurrence of the 1 1/2" placement and the latest (possibly believable) occurrence of the 7/8" placement.  

If the limited data are at all representative, that would suggest a very long overlap period.  I guess that depends on how many of the earlier style inlet stock blanks were in inventory when the change was implemented and how fast the factory was using them up.  Not a very big sample, though.  Hence my appeal last night for more data!!!  

Question... What are the dates/revision dates on your factory drawings?  Was the drawing amended or redrawn circa '37 or '38?  Something that might hint at the date of the design change?  The lithographs in the 1937 catalog seem to clearly indicate the 7/8" location, so I'd guess there would have been drawings showing that at some point? Maybe they were redrawn when the change was authorized?

Best as always, Lou

WACA 9519; Studying Pre-64 Model 70 Winchesters

WACA-Signauture-3.jpg

March 16, 2017
2:37 pm
Avatar
WACA Member
Forum Posts: 253
Member Since:
March 12, 2008
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Lou, the Super Grade Monte Carlo stock drawing is dated 5/9/36, which is same date as standard S/G stock drawing, so I am sure the draftsman just updated the standard low comb drawing with the addition of the Monte Carlo cheek piece. Winchester was very laxed in engineering drawing protocol, based on what I have seen in all their drawings. There is a group of revisions listed on the drawing that were documented in 1953. One of those is " 1.500" was 1.00 ". There is revision #12 on drawing. Unfortunately, it is not referenced with the typical balloon on the actual drawing to show where this change took place. Of the 15 revisions listed in revision block of drawing, only 4 are actually noted as to their location. However, I have looked over the drawing very closely, and can only find one dimension of 1.500", this being the dimension from the centerline of front swivel base to the joint between wood and bakelite forend tip.  As I mentioned, it appears there were several revisions made to this drawing on the same day, so most likely they were just documenting previously changed dimensions and bringing the drawing up to date. 

    The drawing for the standard Super Grade stock, has no revision note for swivel location change. Again, more of Winchesters' laxed engineering changes. So, I am not sure these drawings are going to be much help in actually determining when the change took place.  One interesting item noted on the standard stock blueprint, is the "cut line" dimension with note that show's where to cut forend tip when adding a special order S/G bakelite tip. I found that interesting. It substantiates some of the standard rifles I have seen with S/G tips and swivels.

Steve

March 16, 2017
3:18 pm
Avatar
Charleston, SC
WACA Member
Forum Posts: 253
Member Since:
November 5, 2014
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Steve-

As always, you are the man with many (if not all) of the answers.  Very interesting!!!

I had wrongly presumed that the factory prepared drawings (and revisions) before changes were implemented, as a guide to setting up milling and stock turning machinery, rather than recording manufacturing/design changes after the fact.  

So the best guess is that the original stock drawing of 5/9/36 may have been revised to reflect the change in swivel location in 1953.  Many years (over a decade!!!) after I think we would agree that the change was implemented.

How interesting...  Thanks again!!!  Lou

WACA 9519; Studying Pre-64 Model 70 Winchesters

WACA-Signauture-3.jpg

March 16, 2017
6:35 pm
Avatar
WACA Member
Forum Posts: 253
Member Since:
March 12, 2008
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Lou, your assumption is correct for an efficiently run engineering department. I managed one for 15 years and that is how we handled things. You would be surprised at the amount of hand written notes that are on some of these Winchester blueprints. I think they made a concerted effort to get things cleaned up after WWII. This is evident by the amount of drawings that were redrawn during the mid 50's and up into the 60's. 

Steve

Forum Timezone: UTC 0

Most Users Ever Online: 628

Currently Online: Big Larry
26 Guest(s)

Currently Browsing this Page:
1 Guest(s)


Forum Stats:

Groups: 1

Forums: 14

Topics: 3961

Posts: 30623


Member Stats:

Guest Posters: 480

Members: 6652

Moderators: 3

Admins: 3


Top Posters:

1873man: 3047

win38-55: 1864

twobit: 1785

Maverick: 1077

Brad Dunbar: 971

Matt74: 813

TXGunNut: 777

John E.: 727

Big Larry: 704

JWA: 693

Navigation