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Model 70 Target production #'s
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September 16, 2019 - 3:40 pm
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Hello, a noob to the site here!  I posted in the general section the other day when I finally joined, and I am glad to be a member.  I look forward my continued education here and hope to contribute when I have 2 cents that matter.

Anyhow, can anyone tell me if there is data on how many model 70 Target rifles were made pre 1950?  It has recently become an area of interest for me and I am looking for books that have that information or whatever info I can find.

I am aware bull guns are in 06 or 300 H&H, but productions #’s on those would be helpful as well.  But honestly I am trying to find out how many Target rifles were made and in what calibers.  I know many calibers were offered but finding Targets that are not 06 or .308 seems to be a rarity of sorts.  I have no interest in Varmints or the usual .243 and swift versions.  I am looking for info regarding 7×57, 270wcf, 257 Roberts, etc. in standard 24″ target configuration with Lyman sights.

If anyone can point me in the right direction I would appreciate it.  Thanks!

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September 16, 2019 - 6:03 pm
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Roger Rule’s excellent book on the 70, “The Rifleman’s Rifle” has most of the info you are looking for. I do not think there are any records available that break down the exact number of each chambering per model style. It has been my experience that once you get past the 30-06, 270, 257, 243 and 220 Swift, the pickings get slim.

Steve

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September 16, 2019 - 9:44 pm
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Thanks…that is a good direction to head.

I am hoping to establish some type of ratio of rarity of caliber to condition and price.

I was told about another .257 that was to be in 98% condition.  I would rate it at 90% and incomplete.

Getting the Rule book should help me argue my point to some degree as lots of sellers think they have the only one because “it’s the only one they have ever seen.”  This way I will be armed with more knowledge and actual figures to plead my case.  Thanks for the tip as model 70’s are new to me from a collecting standpoint.

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September 16, 2019 - 9:55 pm
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I have always felt the Target models were slow movers. Apparently, most collectors prefer the sporting versions. I myself have always gravitated to the Targets and Bull’s. I cannot remember the last time I saw a rare caliber in a Target or Bull Gun version, and by rare caliber, I am referring to a 7mm, 250 Savage, 22 Hornet, 35 Rem or 300 Savage. Even a 300 H&H is pretty tough to find in a Target model. I believe you will find these calibers extremely scarce and will pretty much the Rule’s list of chambering rarity for all models. 

Steve

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September 16, 2019 - 10:56 pm
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Hi 34781-

Welcome to WACA!!!  Laugh    

Regarding M70 Target Rifles, Steve is 100% correct (as always)…  He’s my “go-to” guy!!! Laugh As far as I know, there are no extant factory records from 1936-1954 that document regular production by chambering in each of the styles .  There are “yearly net orders received” records (shown in Rule) that specify chambering (but not style), and post-1955 records that have good-ish data on style/serial number.  But not much, if anything, earlier… 

Rule’s book is essential if you are ever going to follow the period and chambering-specific changes that will tell you whether a gun you’re looking at is made of the right parts.  While you’re waiting for your copy to be delivered, I’ll regurgitate some stuff…

The Target Model was cataloged in 22 HORNET (1937-1946), 220 SWIFT (1936-1954), 243 WIN (1955-1963), 250-3000 SAV (1936-1946), 257 ROBERTS (1936-1954), 270 WCF (1936-1954), 7M/M (1936-1946), 30-06 (1936-1963), 300 H&H MAGNUM (1937-1946), and 35 REM (1941-1946).  In 300 MAGNUM, I am referring to the Target rifle (26″ MH barrel), NOT the Bull Gun (28″ EH barrel).  There were also catalogued Special Order target rifles in 308 WIN (1953-1954), but those are rare.

As far as production numbers, the data are incomplete so Rule’s estimates are just that.  Order of rarity (most to least common) of the 14,644 Target Models produced as regular production guns, according to Rule, are:  30-06, 243 WIN (683 units), 220 SWIFT, 257 ROBERTS, 270 WCF, 300 MAGNUM, 250-3000 SAVAGE, 22 HORNET, 7M/M and 35 REM.  You can immediately tell there’s a big drop-off after ’06.  So as Steve says, once you get beyond 270 WCF you’re gonna be looking a long time.  I know, as I’ve been looking…  I’ve handled a couple in 35 REM that are in the hands of a very advanced M70 collector, seen on-line the wreckage of two 300 MAGNUMS, and missed out on a couple in 22 HORNET.  But they’re few and far between…

Bull guns, having only two cataloged chamberings, are easier.  There were (more or less) 2,706 produced as cataloged production; 844 in 30-06 and 1862 in 300 H&H MAGNUM (per Rule)… So the ’06 version isn’t exactly “rare” but it’s not common either…  I’ve handled legit-looking Bull guns in 308 WIN and 250-3000 SAV in other’s collections, and there are several other chamberings have been reported, but Good Luck!!!

Good luck and keep us posted!!!

Lou

WACA 9519; Studying Pre-64 Model 70 Winchesters

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September 17, 2019 - 12:25 am
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Thanks Fellas,

I figured that was the case.  I know several old collectors who are in their late 80’s.  I am not quite 50 yet, but I have been friends with some of them for the better part of 25yrs or so.  I shot a ton of pdogs with one in particular.  He has told me he will start selling off his collection this coming spring and in there are several real gems.  He knows I have a wife and kids and is willing to let me make payments.  I know for fact there is a 7×57 cherry I want.  So I need to come to a fair price for both of us.  He is a very cantankerous fellow and thinks the internet is a fad…so I until I can lay my mitts on it pics will have to wait.

 

Otherwise it seems targets are slow but then again not all that common to find really tasty ones.  I will figure out how to post some pics of one of mine.

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September 17, 2019 - 12:54 am
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Hi 34871-

If you find any of these you should snap them up!!!

M70-3339-1.jpgImage EnlargerSN-3789-2.jpgImage Enlarger

The 1st variation targets (with front sight ramps) are pretty darned hard to find.  These two are 257 ROBERTS (S/N 3339) and .30 GOV’T’06 (S/N 3789), respectively.  I desperately covet one of these in 220 SWIFT, but no luck so-far… Cry

Regardless of ramp or not, a cleanish 7M/M target is a HUGE score…  Good luck and please post photos of your “wins” so I can be jealous!!!

Lou

 

P.S.  If you are a member and logged in you need only “drag and drop” photos into the “upload attachments” window for this to work.  Just try to keep the file size below 1 MB and make sure they’re .jpeg files as the site only accommodates certain file formats.  I’m prepared to be jealous, so please don’t disappoint me!!!

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WACA 9519; Studying Pre-64 Model 70 Winchesters

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September 17, 2019 - 3:46 pm
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Well this one was handy so I snapped a few pics.  I just had some minor surgery so I will be more mobile later in the week.  I am no good with pictures but you should get the idea, and hopefully this upload works.  This one is a .270 wcf and I don’t have the sling on it.  Hopefully I can add some more siblings in the future.target-1.jpgImage Enlargertarget-2.jpgImage Enlargertarget-4.jpgImage Enlargertarget-5.jpgImage Enlargertarget-6.jpgImage Enlarger

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September 17, 2019 - 9:30 pm
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34781-

Nice rifle!!! All the parts look correct to me.

Thanks for sharing!!! Laugh

Lou

WACA 9519; Studying Pre-64 Model 70 Winchesters

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July 26, 2022 - 10:08 pm
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Looking for info on value for my Model 70 Pre ’64 30-06 (S/N 345)?

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July 27, 2022 - 12:50 pm
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Hello Chris-

I’m afraid we’d need more information to answer your question.  As it is, the answer could be anywhere from $500 (or less) to $15,000 (or more).

Is the full serial number 345?  Three digits?  That would make it 1936 production, as the first couple thousand were made before the M70 was first offered for sale on January 1, 1937.  

We’d need to know the style (Standard rifle vs Super Grade vs Carbine vs Target, etc.) and condition including any non-factory modifications as these can greatly impact value.  Clear photos are essential if you want an accurate answer to your question.

If logged in as a Guest you cannot post photos directly, but if you put them on a third party photo site you can post the URL here.  Alternatively, if you register as a Forum Member I think you can post photos directly.  I know this is easy to do if you are also a WACA Member, although joining WACA involves paying dues (well worth it if you’re a Winchester fan)…  Final alternative is that you can send photos to me at [email protected] and I can post them for you.

Good Luck,

Lou

WACA 9519; Studying Pre-64 Model 70 Winchesters

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July 27, 2022 - 1:22 pm
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Louis Luttrell said Final alternative is that you can send photos to me at [email protected] and I can post them for you.
 

 

That should be his first alternative, unless he wishes to test his capacity for handling aggravation.  A first-year production 70 in even half-way decent condition, yes, even drilled for a scope mount, would be a very special rifle to me.

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July 27, 2022 - 4:48 pm
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Lou,

I sent you some pictures when I first received it.  It is still in the same condition (dirty and neglected).  I want to clean it up as I explained in the email, but and reluctant due to the potential loss of value.  

The gun appears to be all original, unmolested without any replacement parts.  The bolt has the same S/N engraved on it as the gun.  There is some surface rust in areas, but everything seems to be in place as expected.  It is a Standard Rifle, Production Period Pre-War, Generation Type I-1, 24″ Barrel, blue finish, walnut stock, .30GOV’T’06. with Lyman 31 W front sight on a #1 ramp with removable cover and a Winchester 22 G rear sight.  The receiver is tapped for scope/sight mounting.  There is correctly no safety pin in the bolt and the bolt handle has the correct carbonium blue finish.  The polished bolt is numbered to the gun. Pre-war safety, cloverleaf receiver tang and pre-war receiver.  A square, un-beveled magazine release button. Standard markings including the Winchester factory oval proof on the left side of the barrel and receiver at the breech.  The straight comb pistol grip stock features checkering on the forearm and grip area, sling swivels and checkered steel butt-plate. 

Polishing Room Records indicate 1936 S/N Range 1-2238

It should start out with an NRA ANTIQUE FIREARM CONDITIONS STANDARDS:

  • FINE: All original parts; over 30% original finish; sharp lettering, numerals and design on metal and wood; minor marks in wood; good bore.

I am not sure what else to include in the description to assist in aiding a long distance valuation.  

Thank you in advance for your feedback,

Chris

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July 27, 2022 - 7:14 pm
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Chris is going to send me some better photos.  I will post them when he does… 

The rifle appears to be as he describes it.  S/N 345, type I-1 M70 Standard rifle in 30 GOV’T’06.  No added holes or other non-factory alterations I could see. Sorry Clarence… The bridge is undrilled!!!  Laugh  I’ll leave the condition description alone until we can post some better pics…

WACA 9519; Studying Pre-64 Model 70 Winchesters

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