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Winchester high wall 1885
October 14, 2019
11:52 am
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Eastern Ct.
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recently saw a winchester 1885 mfg.  in 1887 in 32 scf cal.?  looked in the cartridges of the world, but saw no reference to it. does anyone know anything about this cartridge? straight, tapered, bottle neck, length?  thanks in advance   Bill

October 14, 2019
12:51 pm
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32 Short Center Fire?

 

Mike

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October 14, 2019
12:57 pm
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Bill Sticht said
recently saw a winchester 1885 mfg.  in 1887 in 32 scf cal.? 

I think someone has misread the marking, or it has been messed with--".32 WCF" is the only marking that makes sense; in other words, .32-20.

October 14, 2019
1:27 pm
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TXGunNut said
32 Short Center Fire?

 

Mike  

There WAS a .32 Short Center Fire, but it was called .32 Short Colt, & was merely the CF version of the old (1860) S&W .32 RF.  But because Colt introduced the CF version, their name, rather than S&W, was the one that stuck.  Ditto for the .32 Long CF.

Winchester did chamber the SS model in both the .32 RF & CF versions (but presumably in the LW action), but I don't know how they were marked--probably only .32 Long or Short, as Winchester hated to admit making use of a cartridge originally designed by any competitor.

October 14, 2019
9:27 pm
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According to Ray Giles book the 1885 used Winchester cartridges in 32 SCF, LCF, XLCF, 32 Ideal, 32 WCF and the 32-40.  It was loaded with the 32 short, long and 32 Xl or extra long rimfires.

October 14, 2019
10:26 pm
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Bill Hanzel said
https://auctions.thegunrunner.com/lots/view/1-2B7DEB/winchester-model-1885-high-wall-32-scf-cal-single-shot-rifle-26-octagon-1-barrel-1887-antique  

A HW in .32 Short, CF or RF, falls into the "now I've seen everything" category.  A 32 RF might make slightly more sense, as it was cheap to shoot.  Wouldn't be at all surprised if someone buys this with the intention of re-boring or re-barreling it, as the action alone is worth the current bid price.

October 15, 2019
1:12 am
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Eastern Ct.
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Thanks for the information, evidently it was under powered  and short lived. Appears now that the original cartridge/case has become very collectable, if you find them.

October 15, 2019
1:47 am
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Bill Sticht said
Thanks for the information, evidently it was under powered  and short lived. Appears now that the original cartridge/case has become very collectable, if you find them.  

Underpowered, for sure, but popular for a long time--particularly in Marlins & Marlin Ballards with the reversible firing pin that allowed both cheap RF & CF to be fired in the same gun. Original cases are hard to find, but an ebay dealer sells both (reformed) cases and the heel bullets required for this cartridge.  

I reamed the chamber of a Ballard in this caliber to accept the very slightly larger cases of the .32 S&W Long, which is a more powerful & much more accurate cartridge still used in some bulls-eye competition, & if I wanted another "project" (I don't!), I'd buy this HW & do the same.

October 15, 2019
2:20 am
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The rifle in question is one of just three that were factory chamber3d for the 32 Short Colt (center fire).  It is rare!!  All three of the rifles were early production high-walls (low-walls were not in vogue yet).  I hope nobody is stupid enough to rebore or ream the chamber!

The following is the list of .32 caliber cartridges factory chambered in the Model 1885;

Cartridge Qty
32 W.C.F. 12,640
32-40 11,175
32 Short (Rim Fire) 3,903
32 Long (Rim Fire) 3,263
32 IDEAL 267
32 Long (Colt) 40
32 EX Long (Rim Fire) 28
32 W.S. 26
32 Short (Colt) 3
32 EX Long (Ballard) 2

Bert

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