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1897 Win Riot Provenance
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February 25, 2022 - 6:27 pm
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I recently acquired a WIN 1897 Riot shotgun, Serial #C207832, 20 inch CYL bore. Solid frame with 3 screw forearm, with steel widow peak butt plate round knob pistol grip stock.

Has letters RPD on one side of the stock and the #1 on the other.  I am assuming the RPD stands for Richmond Police Dept.

Bluing is really good and original.  Any suggestions on how to get/research the provenance for this shotgun??

 

Thanks in Advance,

Mitch

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February 26, 2022 - 3:51 am
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Mitch,

I highly suggest that you contact the Cody Firearms Museum records office and obtain a factory letter for your Model 1897 Riot Gun.

Based on the serial number, the date of manufacture was sometime in May, 1903.

Bert

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February 26, 2022 - 1:17 pm
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Thanks Bert,

I’ve certainly learned a lot about Winchesters just by reading the posts in this forum.  One thing I’m curious about, on the 1897 there is what appears to be a tiny “hole” /peen tool mark?? about an inch below the ejection port.  Why and what was this for?

 

Thanks,

Mitch

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February 26, 2022 - 8:21 pm
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Mitchell Reed said
Thanks Bert,

I’ve certainly learned a lot about Winchesters just by reading the posts in this forum.  One thing I’m curious about, on the 1897 there is what appears to be a tiny “hole” /peen tool mark?? about an inch below the ejection port.  Why and what was this for?

 

Thanks,

Mitch  

Mitch,

There should not be a hole below the ejection port. Can you post (or send me) a clear picture of it on your gun?

The picture below shows the right hand side of the receiver on a factory original Riot Gun (S/N C 100707)

Bert

Riot-Gun-SF-100707-RS.jpgImage Enlarger

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February 26, 2022 - 10:15 pm
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Thanks Bert,

Just like on the picture you posted every 1897 I have has that tiny pin hole/divit/peen mark.  Looks about 1 inch below and a 1/4 inch to the left of the rear of the ejection port.  

 

Thanks again,

Mitch

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February 26, 2022 - 10:41 pm
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Mitch,

Mitchell Reed said
Thanks Bert,

Just like on the picture you posted every 1897 I have has that tiny pin hole/divit/peen mark.  Looks about 1 inch below and a 1/4 inch to the left of the rear of the ejection port.  

 

Thanks again,

Mitch  

I had never paid any attention to it before today, so I just checked all of my Model 1897 guns.  With the exception of the one pre “C” (antique) Model 1897 I own (S/N 45287), they all have that same blind pin hole.  It does not appear to extend through the receiver side-wall.  The pre “C” gun I own does not have that tiny machined hole.  I have no idea why it is there ??

Bert

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February 26, 2022 - 10:52 pm
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Thanks Bert,

Yeah, I have handled quite a few 97’s and only noticed the “hole” on this riot gun.  Checked a few others and they had the same.  I don’t think it goes through the receiver either.  I first thought it may have been for lubrication or gas pressure release, but I have no idea!

 

Thanks again,

Mitch

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February 26, 2022 - 11:03 pm
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Mitchell Reed said
Thanks Bert,

Yeah, I have handled quite a few 97’s and only noticed the “hole” on this riot gun.  Checked a few others and they had the same.  I don’t think it goes through the receiver either.  I first thought it may have been for lubrication or gas pressure release, but I have no idea!

 

Thanks again,

Mitch  

To the best of my knowledge, there is nothing in the action directly behind that location. It is too far away from the chamber to be a gas pressure release, and because it does not appear to be a through hole (I do not have anything small enough to check it), I doubt that it would be a lubrication port.  I suspect that it may have been used to position the receiver in a machining jig during the manufacture process.

Bert

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February 27, 2022 - 2:53 pm
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Interesting, I’m sure you are correct probably a “Jig hole”.   I checked my earliest 1897 C77540 and it has it.  Manufacturing process change I guess!

 

Thanks,

Mitch

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February 27, 2022 - 4:58 pm
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Mitch,

If you are interested, I have a research survey in progress for the Model 1897, and I would like to add any that you have to it. Of the 990,522 that were manufactured (S/N range 34151 – 1024701), I have documented 4,080 of them thus far in an effort to nail down as many of the many different production changes as possible. Send me a PM if you want to participate in the survey.

Bert

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July 30, 2022 - 2:32 pm
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Mitchell Reed said
Thanks Bert,

I’ve certainly learned a lot about Winchesters just by reading the posts in this forum.  One thing I’m curious about, on the 1897 there is what appears to be a tiny “hole” /peen tool mark?? about an inch below the ejection port.  Why and what was this for?

 

Thanks,

Mitch

  

That hole is where the slide release button’s spring fits, inside the receiver. The hole is through the receiver wall, but the tip of the spring being inside, it appears to bottom out if you look from outside the receiver, or probe it with a pin.

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