All things being equal how much would you guys say a model 71 that has had the chamber modied to .348 Ackely Improved would effect the rifles market value?
The rifle is otherwise in unmodified condition and in pretty good shape according to the seller. I have not seen photos. yet.
I was a field going forest hydrologist for 30 years. During that time, I frequented a lot of gun stores in grizzly country. Model 71s converted to .450 Alaskan did not stay on the shelf long. Shelf time was probably measured in hours and minutes. Standard Model 71s left almost as fast. But if a guy needed a reliable brush rifle and was going someplace where having a 71 would be a good idea, I don’t think anything chambered for an Ackley Improved cartridge would be given consideration.
I would think the AI has very limited appeal to a serious collector of original Winchesters.
My only first hand experience with an Ackley Improved cartridge is with a .25-35 Model 94 that was unmarked but was bought by a friend. The guy who ran the gunshop thought it was just an ordinary .25-35. I went with my friend to take it back to the seller. My friend said "it has an Ackley Improved chamber". The guy who ran the gunshop walked over to the cash register, opened the till and refunded the purchase price without saying a single word.
April 15, 2005
You guys comments are in line with my ideas on the matter. The guy is asking $3500.00 for the rifle. Of course without at least photos theres no way to judge value. But it seams high to me even for a nice deluxe.
The one rifle of Dads I really wish I had been able to end up with was his 71. I’ve had to consol myself with the beautiful model 1895 I did get.
At least the younger brother that ended up with the 71 appreciates it.
It seems to me that there are two questions to ask of the seller. First, has the caliber marking on the barrel been altered? Second, have any of the internal parts of the rifle been altered to make the Ackley Improved cartridge feed more reliably?
If there are no external "Ackley Improved" markings on the barrel and if there are no internal alterations, the rifle could be restored by putting in a barrel liner or by sleeving the chamber, with all the ethical implications that would accompany such a restoration.
If there are external & internal alterations, the rifle could be altered to .450 Alaskan or one of the other big bore calibers that are in demand.
In either case, you would have to acquire the rifle at a very low price to justify the cost of further work. It is probably easier and much less hassle just to keep looking.
January 5, 2009
A number of Winchesters have been altered to chamber a P.O. Ackley cartridge and the sad part is, unless revealed by the seller, a buyer will typically not know until it’s too late. Usually a rifle that is rechambered to its P.O. Ackley equivalent can safely fire form cases from the original to the Ackley Improved version. Here is a very nice 30 inch number 3 barrel 25-35 that I owned in the late 70’s. I didn’t know it was a 25-35 Ackley Improved until I took it out and shot it the first time. It was a nail driver, even with that old Winchester A5 scope; but the value was sadly diminished.
PB Picture removed.
May 24, 2012