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1886 Winchester model for Africa lion hunts?
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September 25, 2020 - 7:07 pm
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Hi everybody,

I am currently reading T.R. Roosevelts “hunting trips of a ranchman” and I am impressed with that guy. So I naturally came across some more of him and also his love for the lion medicine that has been written so much about.

What I wonder is: before the 1895 .405WCF came on the market, would the African continent have seen the use of Winchester repeaters for lion hunting? So far I know only of Livingstone who used the .44RF in a Henry and 1866 model without much success agains hippos (surprise!).

But what about the later Winchesters, such as 1876 and 1885 and 1886 (the latter two in .45-70, for example)? The 1876 was used by the British against Tigers in India I have heard, but what about Africa?

 

Would be so great if you guys could help me finding some answers….thank you!!

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September 25, 2020 - 10:45 pm
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In regards to the Model 1885 Single Shot rifle, a fair number of them were exported in the 40, 45, and 50 Express cartridges, as well as 45 and 50 Eley cartridges. Presumably, at least some of them were used in Africa, as well as India.

Bert

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September 26, 2020 - 1:48 pm
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It would also seem those guys living in England ordering M1876 .50-95 short rifles… weren’t using them to hunt anything in England.  However, India was probably the destination for many of those rifles.  Seems to me we see more British Proofs on .50-95 M1876’s than any other chambering in that model.

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September 26, 2020 - 3:21 pm
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More than a third the 1876 Express rifles made were 22 inch barrel models.  Many of these seem to have ended up overseas.  Many of the survivors today have British proof marks.  Like this:

39636-01.jpgImage Enlarger

The North American market favored the 26 inch barrel variation of the Express rifle with full magazine and crescent butt.  The traditional Winchester rifle.  Like this:

IMG_0936.JPGImage Enlarger

Any of these .50 caliber Express rifles should have been adequate for lions or tigers.  The extra follow up shots must have brought some comfort, especially as a large cat can move pretty fast.

There is another thread about Lord Keene (it’s actually spelled Keane but Winchester got it wrong) bullets for the Winchester Express.  The Keene bullets have petals separated by paper that were designed to expand on contact making a bigger wound.  Perfect for thin-skinned dangerous game like lions and tigers.

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September 26, 2020 - 3:46 pm
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I prefer the short rifle version with the shotgun butt.  It also seems it would be much easier to maneuver the shorter rifle on a big cat charging at you with lightning speed Surprised  

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