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I think I need a Cody Letter: Model 1894 Deluxe
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June 2, 2023 - 5:49 pm
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I knew just enough about Deluxe rifles to pounce on this one quickly from a local classified.

My gut tells me it is worth a few to several times more than I paid, at $1,200.  But maybe I’m wrong.  A Cody Letter is in order, nonetheless.

The bad:

  1. The rear sight seems like a strange soldered-together piece. 
  2. The front sight is missing its bead. 
  3. Sling posts made a couple of holes.
  4. Some light (almost imperceptible) splotches of pitting on the barrel
  5. A few light dents in the right pistol grip checkering.

The good:

  1. Almost everything else.  I cannot take a picture which shows this gun’s true beauty.  But it is simply splendid.

I welcome all commentary.  Thanks for looking.

 

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June 2, 2023 - 6:06 pm
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Non-original swivel studs & rear sight, but still you did VERY well!

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June 2, 2023 - 6:15 pm
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I too, think you did very well.

But you’re not going to get a Cody letter on this one.  It’s over 200,000 serial numbers too late for a letter to be available.

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June 2, 2023 - 7:37 pm
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You got a wonderful rifle for the money!  I would have whiplash by reaching for my wallet too quickly on that one.

You might consider losing the swivels, finding a fore end cap without a hole in it, and filling the stock swivel hole with a walnut dowel.  I would certainly be able to find room in my safe for that rifle.  Well done!

Blue Ridge Parson

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June 2, 2023 - 8:08 pm
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So, there is no way to verify original configuration on this one?  Shucks!  It looks all the world to be right as rain.  No reblue, no sanding, everything fits like a dream.

At least the buttstock and lower tang number match, 1071.

Would you consider the wood to be 2X, 3X?  With a .554″ muzzle diameter, is this an ELW gun?

And there is no way this type of gun can be worth $12,000 to $15,000.  Can it?

I may attempt a repair of the sling post holes.  Maybe not.

The only two others I can find in this configuration went for crazy money at Julia’s and Collector’s Firearms

https://jamesdjulia.com/item/lot-2309-winchester-model-1894-deluxe-extra-light-weight-take-down-lever-action-rifle-35278/ 

https://www.collectorsfirearms.com/products/121092-ster-1894-takedown-30-wcf-caliber-rifle-deluxe-takedown-half-magazine-rifle-with-deluxe-wood-checkered-pistol-grip-93-w2422.html 

Thanks for the input!

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June 2, 2023 - 8:32 pm
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The examples you present are in much better condition than yours, so $12000 to $15000 is not realistic.  But a takedown rifle with several special order features isn’t a $1200 rifle these days, either.  My guess is that you could easily double or triple your money with little effort, and maybe a bit more, with a bit of effort.  I would follow Gunbroker and see what similar ones might be selling for (not the asking price).

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June 2, 2023 - 8:35 pm
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martin08 said
So, there is no way to verify original configuration on this one?  

There’s just no reason to think it’s not original, except for the two discrepancies noted, both easily corrected. 

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June 2, 2023 - 9:00 pm
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It is an ELW… the clue is the front sight configuration and the muzzle diameter.  I would grade the wood as “XX”.  The incorrect (non-factory original) rear sight can easily be remedied, but the holes in the butt stock and forend cap are going to be more difficult to abate.

The original (surviving) factory records unfortunately end at serial number 353999.

Bert

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June 3, 2023 - 12:15 am
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Thank you all for the experienced answers.

Might as well ask some more questions!

  1. Considering the front sight is a Lyman, would there have been some common likely choices ca. 1911 for a rear sight?
  2. Where to get such a rear sight?
  3.  Where to locate a suitable brass/gold/ivory (faux) bead for the front sight?
  4.  Is this the correct forearm tip?  https://cfnparts.com/Winchester%20Model%201894%20&%20Pre-War%2094%20Rifle%20Parts-245?product_id=6078
  5.  What does the RO represent on the tang?
  6.  Does PM0M (PMGM, PMcM) under the buttpad mean anything?

Thanks again.

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June 3, 2023 - 1:29 am
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martin08 said
I may attempt a repair of the sling post holes.

 

A better idea–buy these on ebay:  https://www.ebay.com/itm/334882197484?hash=item4df888cfec:g:fVEAAOSwh2pkat8t&amdata=enc%3AAQAIAAAA8ML9qWgBQMqm%2BXqKVQOn%2B2RX8qGZDHR2I41yY%2FOhnksU6gvIvr6vb%2FvNnoHnD8bksO7Yofe0suM5gvBZGAvisKUfJ%2BtfvWN15TfoEJC7uNDKCnmQquR5wyTFU0RY3x2QLUCAEOAvC2iGjkItA9xywBTaOLekf2v%2BlJCzqj9HXIjwsbF1%2FzQfFJ2u8SFc9lxaXSr4SwDjsIX2V%2BqtxvsEKL8CUtODG%2BQUtka8NnxRJ2xnoVEvL2LOBoJezHIQySNLD9H9vH6GldAWTytfcHt4Q2AIeC6tpagvaSnTh2fHXmBEu6Rmdzu7p7YJ%2BGNbtRJWYQ%3D%3D%7Ctkp%3ABk9SR4yHme2PYg

 I was amazed to find them so easily, as while the fish-hook swivels are frequently listed on ebay, the mounting studs are very hard to come by.  Cut off the threaded shank of the one intended for the 54 fore-end, then attach it to the cap by peening the butt end inside the cap.  Doing this makes a virtue of the lack of factory records, because with factory studs, it would be hard to prove they weren’t original.

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June 3, 2023 - 1:52 am
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clarence said

A better idea–buy these on ebay:  https://www.ebay.com/itm/334882197484?hash=item4df888cfec:g:fVEAAOSwh2pkat8t&amdata=enc%3AAQAIAAAA8ML9qWgBQMqm%2BXqKVQOn%2B2RX8qGZDHR2I41yY%2FOhnksU6gvIvr6vb%2FvNnoHnD8bksO7Yofe0suM5gvBZGAvisKUfJ%2BtfvWN15TfoEJC7uNDKCnmQquR5wyTFU0RY3x2QLUCAEOAvC2iGjkItA9xywBTaOLekf2v%2BlJCzqj9HXIjwsbF1%2FzQfFJ2u8SFc9lxaXSr4SwDjsIX2V%2BqtxvsEKL8CUtODG%2BQUtka8NnxRJ2xnoVEvL2LOBoJezHIQySNLD9H9vH6GldAWTytfcHt4Q2AIeC6tpagvaSnTh2fHXmBEu6Rmdzu7p7YJ%2BGNbtRJWYQ%3D%3D%7Ctkp%3ABk9SR4yHme2PYg

 I was amazed to find them so easily, as while the fish-hook swivels are frequently listed on ebay, the mounting studs are very hard to come by.  Cut off the threaded shank of the one intended for the 54 fore-end, then attach it to the cap by peening the butt end inside the cap.  Doing this makes a virtue of the lack of factory records, because with factory studs, it would be hard to prove they weren’t original.

  

I will take a look under the forend cap tomorrow to see what I have for a hole diameter.  Thank you

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June 3, 2023 - 2:12 am
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I agree with Clarence about opting for installing a set of original Winchester screw eyes. If you go that direction, I have a set of reproduction fish-hook style sling swivels I would sell to you cheap.  Asking $35 for the pair shipped.  Send me a PM if interested.

Don

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June 3, 2023 - 2:44 am
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martin08 said
I will take a look under the forend cap tomorrow to see what I have for a hole diameter.  Thank you

Remember–it’s $65 Buy It Now.  I’d take them myself, if I wasn’t pretty close to the end of my tether. 

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June 3, 2023 - 11:48 am
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I made an offer of $45 last evening.  The seller countered with $50, and I accepted.  I knew it was somewhat chancing not to use BIN.  But $15 is saved, and I will now set my ‘sights’ on a rear sight.

Thank you, Clarence.  Incoming PM, Don.

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June 3, 2023 - 12:19 pm
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What do you folks think about this rear sight?  Take a chance at a hundred bucks?

ORIGINAL WINCHESTER 1894 REAR SIGHT WITH ELEVATOR

Seems a little crusty, but it might still have some full blue coverage to be brought out by boiling in distilled water and carding.

 

There are not a lot of sources that I can find.  So, I am also open to suggestions/options on the rear sight.  An Express three leaf would be the all the vintage rage.  One can dream.

 

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June 3, 2023 - 12:43 pm
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martin08 said An Express three leaf would be the all the vintage rage.  One can dream.
 

Not an unreasonable dream, as they show up on ebay all the time, probably about $300 for a really good one.  An Express sight wouldn’t be out of place on a gun with so many other options, but wouldn’t look right if there’s any “ghost” mark left on the blue by the original sight.  (Surprising the original owner didn’t order it with a tang sight.)  Maybe you can improve the sight you found, but the factory Sporting rear sight isn’t a hard one to find.  A member here, Ben Tolson, might have the one you need.

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June 3, 2023 - 1:08 pm
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Hi, I don’t think that sight is correct for a rifle of that vintage. That sight doesn’t show up until after WWII. I believe you need this type. 

Winchester Semi Buckhorn Rear Sight W/ Elevator 1873 1876 1886 1892 1894 1885 94 | eBay

 

Dana

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June 3, 2023 - 1:43 pm
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I will drift out the existing sight with a brass punch and see what lies underneath.  Good suggestion to look for ghosting in the blue before proceeding.  Thanks.

And thank you for dating the sight i suggested.   I definitely want pre-WWI vintage.  Not all rifles are worth the effort for correct restoration, but this one is.

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June 4, 2023 - 5:29 pm
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martin08 said
I will drift out the existing sight with a brass punch and see what lies underneath.  Good suggestion to look for ghosting in the blue before proceeding.  Thanks.

And thank you for dating the sight i suggested.   I definitely want pre-WWI vintage.  Not all rifles are worth the effort for correct restoration, but this one is.

  

Don’t forget the playing card trick to avoid scratching. 

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June 4, 2023 - 5:51 pm
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On the underside of the forend wood, there is a Triangle-1, VP in Oval (verified proof, double or bounce struck) and an M.N.S. (nickel steel, also bounce struck on the S).

 

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And then, there is the most unfortunate surprise one could possibly find under the rear sight.  I am posting detailed pictures, just in case this gun shows up at an auction after my demise, and the following is not disclosed.

There are two sight plugs.  Yep.  You heard me.  Ugh.  The worst case scenario.  Had I not removed the rear sight, I might never have known.

Judging by the crud in the screw head slots, they were probably there for a long time.  And the wear pattern from the ersatz rear sight also shows longevity of the pairing.  But dang.  What a way to ruin a day.

Please note in your databases for Serial #578472.

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