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.44 mag 1894 years of manufacturing?
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BeoBear
August 4, 2021 - 1:41 am

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I know the first .44 magnum 1894’s were made in the late 60’s but can someone tell me exactly what years this gun was manufactured in this caliber? 

There’s a lot of conflicting information out there so I figured if anyone knew it would be the folks here.

Much thanks.

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Posts: 347
August 4, 2021 - 4:58 pm

2sp_QuotePost

Hi & Welcome!  My belief the 44 Mag Model 94 (not 1894) chambering has been in & out of production at least several times/variations, as you note commencing from latter sixties. Such including the “Wrangler” – big loop lever edition.  Unsure authoritative stats you desire commonly available, but perhaps someone out there with precise dates!                  Good luck!                                                                                                            Best!

John

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BeoBear
August 5, 2021 - 1:42 am

3sp_QuotePost

Yes, model 94.  I know they first came out in 68 and were produced in 69 and 70 (I have a 70) but I don’t know if those were the only years of top eject guns.  I think they took a hiatus at some point and then came back after Winchester switched to angle eject.  

I’m not a big fan of the guns with safeties so I’m more interested in the years of those if anyone knows.

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Posts: 347
August 5, 2021 - 4:26 am

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Returning!  Better understanding your objective perhaps!  As more succinct!  The Angle Eject came out in early eighties, my guestimate 1983 or so as USRA took over Winchester production under Olin Winchester license agreement.  The ever popular Model 94, was offered every year to my knowledge from 1894 to date; excepting few WWII years.  When speaking of “44 Magnum chambering, that’s where the info gets tight!  If you wish, you can peruse ‘almost’ every post ’63 Wincher-Olin year (and download if desired) Catalog from 1960 through 1981. Review each available for your desired rifle factual offering.

OLIN WIN:  https://cartridgecollectors.org/ammunition-catalogs/Winchester-Western

If interested:  FN WINCHESTER:  Re 2001 – 2019.  https://www.winchesterguns.com/support/catalog.html

As you, I’m not imbued with the “angle eject” genre; losing some fundamental originality factors!  But then, I’m not a hunter either and no scope permutations to contend. 

Best!

John

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BeoBear
August 9, 2021 - 12:47 am

5sp_QuotePost

Thank you.  From what I’ve been able to find the first year for the .44 magnum was 1968 and it continued until 1970 for a total of 3 years of the top eject version.  I think it was brought back at some point in the mid 80’s but by that time they were angle eject versions with the unnecessary safeties added to capitulate to the lawyers.  

I appreciate the information!

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Posts: 804
August 9, 2021 - 8:18 pm

6sp_QuotePost

 In the past I had a model 94 .44 Remington Magnum that I bought new for $265.00 back in 1981.It was top ejection.If they were not made with top ejection after 1970,perhaps  it could of been an unsold in stock item.

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Kingston, WA
Posts: 10609
August 9, 2021 - 11:46 pm

7sp_QuotePost

All Model 94s are top eject. Starting in 1983 the Angel-eject (a different type of top eject) was introduced.

Bert

WACA 6571L, Historian & Board of Director Member
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BeoBear
August 10, 2021 - 3:08 am

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@ 28 Gauge,  those are just the dates I could come up with from second hand sources but I don’t know it for a fact.  It’s possible that the top eject .44 magnums were manufactured after 1970 because I was unable to find any kind of official information on the subject.  Hopefully, someone who knows for sure can comment and link a source.

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Posts: 804
August 10, 2021 - 7:18 pm

9sp_QuotePost

 The rifle I had was the old style top ejection.Serial number of the rifle was 4613016.Bought it new in October of 1981 and sold it in October of 1983.

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Posts: 347
August 11, 2021 - 1:20 am

10sp_QuotePost

28gauge, according to SN your 94 lever was made in 1978. No big stretch to feature it being ‘in inventory’ somewhere for several years.  Fact of 44 Mag chambering, SN & “purchased new” pretty convincing proof of such ’78 production! 🙂 

My perception this Model 94 chambering as less popular factory ordained ‘stand in’, for such as renewed Model 92.  Almost surely also factory perception, sales numbers never justifying ‘entire model’ startup. Such, as I recall the Rossi Firm, rising to the occasion with good success.  To contrast, Marlin with their 336 – Model 94 chambering direct competitor, also with few years 44 Mag chambering. Also theirs a pretty uncommon variation today. Marlin of course, adapting the 44 Mag to their Model 1894, already available in .357 Mag and both enjoying popularity!  

My theory (only that), likely there wasn’t a monumental “stop the presses” and champagne christening, USRA assumption of command.  Rather a quiet “transition period”, specifically not publicized as existing “in-production” components yet to be completed & marketed!  I do believe it ‘likely’ that the Angle Eject variation, of ‘new & improved’ notoriety, did likely reflect a definite USRA footprint, henceforth ‘firmly at the helm’. 

Amplifying the lament…  That USRA evidently never to have retained/renewed the classic “vertical eject” design! 

Best & all Kindly Stay Covid Safe!

John 

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Posts: 804
August 11, 2021 - 7:45 pm

11sp_QuotePost

 Yes, the rifle was most likely a left over or a late build.Smile

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Posts: 294
August 12, 2021 - 12:44 am

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According to Renneberg’s book, 1967-1972; re-introduced 1976-1980 (Canadian issues only?) then the third time as a trapper only in 1986 (until/ only?). Not very concrete but it’s something.  I have one of the first runs, SN#3206719M; not AE, no safety. AE introduced in 1983 (’78 for some Big Bore rifles).

Technically, the glass is always full; half liquid, half air....

WACA #10293

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Posts: 4097
August 12, 2021 - 2:15 am

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rwsem said
According to Renneberg’s book, 1967-1972; re-introduced 1976-1980 (Canadian issues only?) then the third time as a trapper only in 1986 (until/ only?). Not very concrete but it’s something.  I have one of the first runs, SN#3206719M; not AE, no safety. AE introduced in 1983 (’78 for some Big Bore rifles).  

I had at least one early one.  I recall when they we made during the 1967-1972 period I was hot for one.  I remember going into a gunshop with my Dad and he looked at one and looked at the cartridge.  His comment was, “I don’t think these would be much good for deer.”  I ultimately proved him wrong and hunted with several .44 magnum rifles including a couple Ruger Deerstalkers.  The one I hunted with the most was a Marlin M1894 .44 mag. and had a lot of success with it.  I regret not picking up a ’94 in .44-40 – seems it was circa mid to late 70’s?  I believe they were Canadian issue only.  I suppose Wincheser was tooled up to easily make these as they had that ’94 Cheyenne Commemorative in .44-40.  I believe they made these in ’77 and about 12,000 were issued.  They were flashy rifles and issued with a tang sight if I recall. 

For some reason, the ’94 chambered in .44 mag. and .44-40, despite all being, “post 63” tickled my fancy.  I also had an angle eject in .45 Colt.  I shot it some and liked the combination of that cartridge in the ’94 but the angle eject feature was too much of a departure from traditional for me.  That was the only angle eject Winchester I ever owned.  

It’s impressive how many cartridges the M1894/94 was made from 1894 until recent times.  I doubt I could name them all but the list includes 7-30 Waters, .357 magnum, .444, .450 Marlin,  .375, .307, .356 .410… I’m sure there’s more!

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Northern edge of the D/FW Metromess
Posts: 4864
August 12, 2021 - 3:45 am

14sp_QuotePost

My one and only AE 94 was a 45 Colt Trapper. Very disappointing on the range but someone paid me way too much for it a few years ago. Pretty cute but the proceeds paid for some real Winchesters. 

 

Mike

Life Member TSRA, Endowment Member NRA
BBHC Member, TGCA Member
Smokeless powder is a passing fad! -Steve Garbe
I hate rude behavior in a man. I won't tolerate it. -Woodrow F. Call, Lonesome Dove
Some of my favorite recipes start out with a handful of depleted counterbalance devices.-TXGunNut
Presbyopia be damned, I'm going to shoot this thing! -TXGunNut
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Posts: 294
August 12, 2021 - 9:26 am

15sp_QuotePost

I started my Winchester accumulation with post 63, non safety, specimens.  My post ’63 94s are chambered in .22LR, .44Mag, .307, .356, .375, 45 Colt, and 7-30 Waters. 

Technically, the glass is always full; half liquid, half air....

WACA #10293

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Posts: 804
August 13, 2021 - 12:12 am

16sp_QuotePost

https://images.ourontario.ca/Cobourg/details.asp?ID=63704

https://www.gunsamerica.com/910617447/Winchester-M-94-44-40-NIB-Made-in-Canada-Scarce-Not-Commemorativ.htm

 

 A couple of links to Winchester Canada related items.One showing a Made in Canada marking, on the box of a Model 94 .44-40.

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Posts: 4097
August 13, 2021 - 1:29 am

17sp_QuotePost

28 gauge said
https://images.ourontario.ca/Cobourg/details.asp?ID=63704

https://www.gunsamerica.com/910617447/Winchester-M-94-44-40-NIB-Made-in-Canada-Scarce-Not-Commemorativ.htm

 

 A couple of links to Winchester Canada related items.One showing a Made in Canada marking, on the box of a Model 94 .44-40.  

Very cool information and also, a very cool rifle.  Yes, I saw a couple of them advertised for sale back in the day.  I wonder what this one sold for?  I suppose at the time it sold, there were no other .44-40 lever action rifles for sale?  Were there any M1892 clones offered that early? Maybe an Italian made clone of a ’73 or Henry rifle?

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Posts: 804
August 13, 2021 - 12:06 pm

18sp_QuotePost

 Seems to me at the time ,there were one or two Model 1892 copies available, in the time frame we are speaking of.From what I have read on the Winchester Model 94 44-40 it was introduced for the Canadian market.Not sure why,but Winchester said there was a demand for the 44-40 in Canada.

 

 From what I understand, all these 44-40 Model 94 rifles used .44 Magnum barrels.The 44 Magnum has a bit larger bore than the 44-40, so shooting regular 44-40 ammunition out of them gave poor results down range.This was fixed by pulling the 44-40 bullets and reloading with 44 Magnum bullets.After doing that,results were quite good.So I am told.

 

 Had a chance to buy a new Model 94 44-40 back in the day, at a gun shop for $269 or $289.Thought and thought on that rifle,but never did buy it.Not one of my better decisions .SmileDid buy the Model 94 44 Magnum,but sold it later.Frown

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Posts: 4097
August 13, 2021 - 12:20 pm

19sp_QuotePost

28 gauge said
 Seems to me at the time ,there were one or two Model 1892 copies available, in the time frame we are speaking of.From what I have read on the Winchester Model 94 44-40 it was introduced for the Canadian market.Not sure why,but Winchester said there was a demand for the 44-40 in Canada.

 

 From what I understand, all these 44-40 Model 94 rifles used .44 Magnum barrels.The 44 Magnum has a bit larger bore than the 44-40, so shooting regular 44-40 ammunition out of them gave poor results down range.This was fixed by pulling the 44-40 bullets and reloading with 44 Magnum bullets.After doing that,results were quite good.So I am told.

 

 Had a chance to buy a new Model 94 44-40 back in the day, at a gun shop for $269 or $289.Thought and thought on that rifle,but never did buy it.Not one of my better decisions .SmileDid buy the Model 94 44 Magnum,but sold it later.Frown  

That’s amusing.  I had the chance to purchase one of these .44-40’s for about the price you quote – and I too thought long and hard about it.  And like you, it wasn’t my best decision to not get it.  That’s interesting about the bore diameter.  I had wondered if Winchester had gone to the trouble of manufacturing a barrel with a diameter a couple thousand’s smaller.  Apparently not.  We are talking post-1963 so maybe quality wasn’t as much of a concern?  I wonder what they thought about shipping out rifles that produced very poor accuracy?  I’d sure like to see the results of the factory testing of these rifles.

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Posts: 804
August 13, 2021 - 1:44 pm

20sp_QuotePost

 Good question about the quality control.In this time period,for the most part, Winchester seems to have thrown quality control out the door.They were still running on their good name of the  pre 64 years and out to get as much profit as they could ,until that good name had all been used up.Most of us at the time, considered the out put, little more than junk.No body ever thought these firearms would be worth any more than their weight for scrap.I still find it hard to believe, how much people will pay today for a firearm made in this era.Especially the Model 94 with its pins and stamped lifter.

 

 The post Model 70 of the era was much different than the pre 64 rifle.A clawed extractor ,compared to a push feed system.It should have never been called a Model 70,but was so different that it should have had a new model number.Winchester in its need to max profit, kept the same Model number to run on the good name of the earlier model.

 The push feed system has its good points,but should never have been called a Model 70.

 

All of this is just my opinion of course.Smile

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