This is interesting. I guess I hadn’t heard of a takedown 1873 but I don’t really focus on ’73s. This is a cool rifle, for sure.
Found a second one…….
March 21, 2016
All 73’s in 22 caliber had the takedown feature when they first came out. After a while they had lots of complaints of the barrels getting loose since there was no means to tighten it up like the later takedowns you are familiar with. Rather than pull all the 22’s out of the warehouse and parts bins and have to scrape the receivers and barrels they just peened the taper pin over so it couldn’t be removed and started producing them with the a normal threaded in barrel. It never was a option and never showed in the ledger.
It would be interesting to see the ledger to see how the “pin on” was written in. Was it in the original entry or was it added later but it apparently it was written next to the stock type column since they wrote the letter like that. This would be the first 22 that had the takedown pin listed if its referring to the takedown that I have ever seen.
Makes sense to me, I just guessed this was a reference to the TD feature.
Thanks for your insight Bob, I was not aware they were all this way at first. How long did they make the TD’s before going back to the solid frame version? Also, I guess I’m not even sure when the 22 rimfire 73’s first showed up? Enlighten me, please.
November 7, 2015
I’ve heard many of these 1873 22’s were presentation guns, maybe Winchester didn’t expect them to get much use. My source also told me the pins were apparently quite easy to lose in the field.
The 22 was not designed by Winchester, it was designed by Klein & Carr in 1883. They bought eleven 38 caliber octagon rifles from Winchester minus the barrels and the parts that were not needed for a 22. They designed and prototyped the 22 and then patent it and then sold the patent to Winchester. Winchester started production later that year. The takedown pin ended in 1885 with a few outliers after that. I have one of those prototype guns and it does have the takedown pin. One of these days I’m going to write a article for the magazine about them.