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Winchester M1886 - speculating what a, "return and repair" means - this one is mine
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June 23, 2017 - 8:07 pm
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Attached is a photo from a museum letter I have for my 1886 Winchester.  As and aside, this is one probably the most interesting museum letter I have given the comments about the trigger pull.  This rifle has several special order features as well as a notation of a return and repair.  When I purchased the rifle, the seller told me that the return and repair was for having the checkering removed (the checkering has been removed).  When I asked him how he knew that – he said he knew it because it was the only thing it could be – as nothing else was changed on the rifle.  So, I thought it would be fun to throw this out there.

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June 23, 2017 - 8:16 pm
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Some photos of my ’86:

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June 23, 2017 - 8:17 pm
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Another photo –

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June 23, 2017 - 8:24 pm
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An R&R could mean a lot of things. They can be configuration changes, refinishing or just as it says a repair or all of them. When you have a gun that does not letter correctly a R&R is your get out of jail free card if the work is consistent with Winchesters workmanship. If Winchester removed the checkering from the gun they would  not of sanded it off and refinished it. They would of put new wood on it.

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June 23, 2017 - 9:16 pm
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My observations…

Enlarging the one photograph of the lower tang suggests that the wood is not proud to the tang. Winchester did not produce guns like this, which suggests heavy sanding and a refinish to the wood. Please post more photographs of the wood/metal junction in order to support or (hopefully) refute my observations, as the one photograph of this area you posted is by no means crisp and distinct.

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June 23, 2017 - 10:18 pm
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In short order, I think any uncertainty is solved.  There is one area where I can see the faintest outline of old checkering.  Hence, the checkering was sanded off. I will defer to 1873man who points out that Winchester would not have sanded the checking out, but rather replaced the wood.  I’m sure the return and repair notation refers to some other repair.  I suppose I could have it re-checkered in the original pattern but that wouldn’t make it right. I’ve left it as it is for the many years I’ve owned it and will continue to do so.  It’s still a special order ’86 in .45/90 with the same killer wood that it left the factory with along with quite a bit else going for it.  By the way, the recent ’86 (non-deluxe) we saw on Gunbroker that Jackthedog sold, had a sanded and refinished buttstock – which didn’t prevent bidders from pushing it up to over $7000.  So, anyone else see another Winchester with, “Trigger pull as light as consistent with safety”?

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June 23, 2017 - 10:49 pm
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If they wanted a trigger with a light pull why didn’t they have a set trigger and you could of adjusted it as light as you wanted.

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June 23, 2017 - 11:52 pm
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steve004 said
Attached is a photo from a museum letter I have for my 1886 Winchester.  As and aside, this is one probably the most interesting museum letter I have given the comments about the trigger pull.  This rifle has several special order features as well as a notation of a return and repair.  When I purchased the rifle, the seller told me that the return and repair was for having the checkering removed (the checkering has been removed).  When I asked him how he knew that – he said he knew it because it was the only thing it could be – as nothing else was changed on the rifle.  So, I thought it would be fun to throw this out there.

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Steve,

I have seen several dozen identical ledger entries for the Model 1885 Single Shot rifles.  This is the first time I have seen it for a Model 1886, but it does not surprise me.

Bert

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June 24, 2017 - 3:18 pm
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1873Man and others,

  Interesting to say the least.  I wished to comment here, though, that I have a factory letter on an 1873 that was returned to the factory within a month or two (going on memory here) of purchase to have the set trigger removed.  One aspect of the documentation of all that was redone to the rifle at that time is a notation of 2#.  No explanation, but based on its current very nice trigger, I am betting it meant a 2 pound trigger pull on the normal type trigger after removal of the set trigger. Wish you got today’s makers to do such!

Tim Tomlinson

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