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1897 WWII Trench Gun - Just Purchased - Factory Correct & Original - Would Appreciate Feedback
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March 18, 2024 - 5:40 pm
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Hi guys,

First post here. I’ve been wanting an original 1897 trench shotgun for a few years. Only requirement was it for to be in original factory specs.

Found one that fits the bill.

Photos:

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipMOOm13HfHjqdH65mO97MMQdvHR3exv9MM7DVH8ke36-EQ5aMoXxddG82GlQPFV3A?key=clMxSE1wMnZCanRhWXZWWWxHa3MwV05Uc1Roa1d3

Everything looks correct to me. The only thing that slowed me down for a minute was the different color of the bayonet lug. Figured parts just age differently. Since everything else looks 100% correct.

Would welcome any feedback, if everything does indeed look factory correct and original.

Any idea of month of production also?

Thanks for any thoughts,

-Danny 

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March 19, 2024 - 1:06 am
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Danny,

It appears to be an authentic WW II Trench Gun.  The s/n identifies it as a February 1943 production gun.  I suspect that it will have a “42” date stamped barrel.

Bert

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March 19, 2024 - 1:54 am
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Dannyjunkfish said
Hi guys,

First post here. I’ve been wanting an original 1897 trench shotgun for a few years. Only requirement was it for to be in original factory specs.

Found one that fits the bill.

Photos:

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipMOOm13HfHjqdH65mO97MMQdvHR3exv9MM7DVH8ke36-EQ5aMoXxddG82GlQPFV3A?key=clMxSE1wMnZCanRhWXZWWWxHa3MwV05Uc1Roa1d3

Everything looks correct to me. The only thing that slowed me down for a minute was the different color of the bayonet lug. Figured parts just age differently. Since everything else looks 100% correct.

Would welcome any feedback, if everything does indeed look factory correct and original.

Any idea of month of production also?

Thanks for any thoughts,

-Danny 

  

I could not see a GHD cartouche on the stock. It also has the bead on the bbl. ground off. Common on late guns. You did not mention a price? Pretty relevant when dealing with a high dollar collectible.   Big Larry SmileSmileSmile

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March 19, 2024 - 11:01 am
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Bert H. said
Danny,

It appears to be an authentic WW II Trench Gun.  The s/n identifies it as a February 1943 production gun.  I suspect that it will have a “42” date stamped barrel.

Bert

  

Thanks Bert! Appreciate the feedback! Very excited for this one!

-D

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March 19, 2024 - 11:04 am
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Big Larry said

Dannyjunkfish said

Hi guys,

First post here. I’ve been wanting an original 1897 trench shotgun for a few years. Only requirement was it for to be in original factory specs.

Found one that fits the bill.

Photos:

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipMOOm13HfHjqdH65mO97MMQdvHR3exv9MM7DVH8ke36-EQ5aMoXxddG82GlQPFV3A?key=clMxSE1wMnZCanRhWXZWWWxHa3MwV05Uc1Roa1d3

Everything looks correct to me. The only thing that slowed me down for a minute was the different color of the bayonet lug. Figured parts just age differently. Since everything else looks 100% correct.

Would welcome any feedback, if everything does indeed look factory correct and original.

Any idea of month of production also?

Thanks for any thoughts,

-Danny 

  

I could not see a GHD cartouche on the stock. It also has the bead on the bbl. ground off. Common on late guns. You did not mention a price? Pretty relevant when dealing with a high dollar collectible.   Big Larry SmileSmileSmile

  

The stock has the crossed cannons and GHD cartouche. They just didn’t take a close up photo of it.

It was expensive. $8K, but I don’t ever see them going down. 

-D

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March 19, 2024 - 4:25 pm
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Dannyjunkfish said

Big Larry said

Dannyjunkfish said

Hi guys,

First post here. I’ve been wanting an original 1897 trench shotgun for a few years. Only requirement was it for to be in original factory specs.

Found one that fits the bill.

Photos:

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipMOOm13HfHjqdH65mO97MMQdvHR3exv9MM7DVH8ke36-EQ5aMoXxddG82GlQPFV3A?key=clMxSE1wMnZCanRhWXZWWWxHa3MwV05Uc1Roa1d3

Everything looks correct to me. The only thing that slowed me down for a minute was the different color of the bayonet lug. Figured parts just age differently. Since everything else looks 100% correct.

Would welcome any feedback, if everything does indeed look factory correct and original.

Any idea of month of production also?

Thanks for any thoughts,

-Danny 

  

I could not see a GHD cartouche on the stock. It also has the bead on the bbl. ground off. Common on late guns. You did not mention a price? Pretty relevant when dealing with a high dollar collectible.   Big Larry SmileSmileSmile

  

The stock has the crossed cannons and GHD cartouche. They just didn’t take a close up photo of it.

It was expensive. $8K, but I don’t ever see them going down. 

-D

  

Looks like a nice Trenchgun. I have a minty 1943 M97 Trenchgun and have turned down $10,000 for it. I no longer collect US martial arms but I saved this out of my previous collection as I have all the accoutrements that go with it. 

I did see the cartouche. Many have no cartouche and for me, that’s a deal breaker. What comes next? Winchester 1917 bayonet, boxed WW2 ammo, WW2 ammo pouch? All this stuff is hard to find and very expensive. Good luck to you. You are lucky. You got a nice, 100% correct shotgun.  Big Larry

Trenchgun-in-action.jpgImage Enlarger

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March 19, 2024 - 9:43 pm
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Big Larry said

Dannyjunkfish said

Big Larry said

Dannyjunkfish said

Hi guys,

First post here. I’ve been wanting an original 1897 trench shotgun for a few years. Only requirement was it for to be in original factory specs.

Found one that fits the bill.

Photos:

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipMOOm13HfHjqdH65mO97MMQdvHR3exv9MM7DVH8ke36-EQ5aMoXxddG82GlQPFV3A?key=clMxSE1wMnZCanRhWXZWWWxHa3MwV05Uc1Roa1d3

Everything looks correct to me. The only thing that slowed me down for a minute was the different color of the bayonet lug. Figured parts just age differently. Since everything else looks 100% correct.

Would welcome any feedback, if everything does indeed look factory correct and original.

Any idea of month of production also?

Thanks for any thoughts,

-Danny 

  

I could not see a GHD cartouche on the stock. It also has the bead on the bbl. ground off. Common on late guns. You did not mention a price? Pretty relevant when dealing with a high dollar collectible.   Big Larry SmileSmileSmile

  

The stock has the crossed cannons and GHD cartouche. They just didn’t take a close up photo of it.

It was expensive. $8K, but I don’t ever see them going down. 

-D

  

Looks like a nice Trenchgun. I have a minty 1943 M97 Trenchgun and have turned down $10,000 for it. I no longer collect US martial arms but I saved this out of my previous collection as I have all the accoutrements that go with it. 

I did see the cartouche. Many have no cartouche and for me, that’s a deal breaker. What comes next? Winchester 1917 bayonet, boxed WW2 ammo, WW2 ammo pouch? All this stuff is hard to find and very expensive. Good luck to you. You are lucky. You got a nice, 100% correct shotgun.  Big Larry

Trenchgun-in-action.jpgImage Enlarger

 

  

Already have a real clean M1917 Remington bayonet.

I am going to swap slings. As this one on the shotgun doesn’t appear to be GI. I have a 1907 sling. I think my canvas flat buckle khaki will look better though imo. 

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March 20, 2024 - 1:02 am
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My M1907 sling is dated 1943 and is mint like the rest of the gun. My pouch is dated JQMD 43 as well.  I had to buy all minty stuff as the gun is super nice.

The Win. M1917 bayonet  is also mint as are the paper and brass WW2 00buck. I had a US marked cleaning rod but gave it away. I paid less than $3,000 for it. That’s why I bought it. The accoutrements are getting very hard to find, and very expensive. Good luck. Big Larry

 

M1897-Trenchgun-2.JPGImage Enlarger

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March 20, 2024 - 3:32 am
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Big Larry said

Dannyjunkfish said

Hi guys,

First post here. I’ve been wanting an original 1897 trench shotgun for a few years. Only requirement was it for to be in original factory specs.

Found one that fits the bill.

Photos:

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipMOOm13HfHjqdH65mO97MMQdvHR3exv9MM7DVH8ke36-EQ5aMoXxddG82GlQPFV3A?key=clMxSE1wMnZCanRhWXZWWWxHa3MwV05Uc1Roa1d3

Everything looks correct to me. The only thing that slowed me down for a minute was the different color of the bayonet lug. Figured parts just age differently. Since everything else looks 100% correct.

Would welcome any feedback, if everything does indeed look factory correct and original.

Any idea of month of production also?

Thanks for any thoughts,

-Danny 

  

I could not see a GHD cartouche on the stock. It also has the bead on the bbl. ground off. Common on late guns. You did not mention a price? Pretty relevant when dealing with a high dollar collectible.   Big Larry SmileSmileSmile

  

Larry,

 You mention that the bbl bead is ground off. Could you expand on that. I also have a late 97 trench gun that has been vetted by Bert but i always had the nagging question in the back of my mind as to why?

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March 20, 2024 - 3:27 pm
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The ground off bead thing has been kicked around for years. It was said that they used spare riot bbls. to make late Trenchguns, BUT, the riot bbls. are completely different than Trench bbls. They have the provision for attaching the bbl. band , and the taper on a riot bbl. is much more than a Trench bbl.

I have no definite answer for you. I have owned several of these M97’s and one M12 Trenchgun with a ground bead.

Possible they drilled the bead hole before the bbl. was finished? I don’t have a clue. The work is very professional. The ground beads seem to appear on the very late guns only. Mine is #955553, a very high number.

This is a good question for  Mr. Bruce Canfield, world renown expert on US militaria. Maybe he knows.  Big LarryMarine-with-Trenchgun.jpgImage Enlarger

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March 20, 2024 - 4:04 pm
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Based on my observations, there is no dimensional difference between the Riot and Trench Gun barrels. Winchester simply milled the (3) grooves on the bottom of the barrel for the bayonet/heat shield mounting screws, and fitted the barrel up for mounting the heat shield.

The theory that the barrels with the ground off sight beads were repurposed Riot Gun barrels is the most feasible explanation.  As mentioned, the Trench Guns found with the ground bead are late production.  Winchester would have used up any on hand Riot Gun barrels to finish up the final run of Government contract Trench guns.

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March 20, 2024 - 5:16 pm
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They must have drilled the hole before adding the provision on the bbl. to attach the bbl. band on the riot and standard bbls. Yes, your assumption may be correct, but how and when was the provision for the band added to the bbl.? Was it brazed on?   Big Larry

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March 20, 2024 - 5:31 pm
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Yes, the 97 riot and trench barrels as well as the Model 12 trench barrels do not have a taper like the Model 12 riot barrels do.  Because of this they had to use a sleeve on the end of the barrel to make the bayonet adaptor fit properly when they converted Model 12 riot guns to trench guns.  

I have seen some of these 97 trench barrels with the plugged sight hole that did have the cuts on them for the barrel band.  I have a couple of photos of this I can send to someone if they wish to post them here.

 

Edit… pictures added.

thumbnail_97-plugged-TG-barrel_band-cuts_01.jpgImage Enlargerthumbnail_97-plugged-TG-barrel_band-cuts_02.jpgImage Enlargerthumbnail_sleeve_m12-riot-to-TG_02.jpgImage Enlarger

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March 20, 2024 - 6:48 pm
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Tom D said
Yes, the 97 riot and trench barrels as well as the Model 12 trench barrels do not have a taper like the Model 12 riot barrels do.  Because of this they had to use a sleeve on the end of the barrel to make the bayonet adaptor fit properly when they converted Model 12 riot guns to trench guns.  

I have seen some of these 97 trench barrels with the plugged sight hole that did have the cuts on them for the barrel band.  I have a couple of photos of this I can send to someone if they wish to post them here.

  

You mention a sleeve? I cannot remember which Trenchgun I had, that had a long discontinued brand grape soda can used as a sleeve. I guess with Winchester as well as others, they had spare parts that they used up. The Govt. contracts did not allow for them to purchase left over parts. Big Larry

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March 20, 2024 - 8:41 pm
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Hi Larry.

It was the Model 12 riot guns converted to trench guns by the military where they brazed a sleeve on the muzzle end of the tapered barrel to make the bayonet adaptor fit properly.   The three transverse grooves for the bayonet adaptor screws were cut into the sleeve.  I have a photo of the sleeve I can send to someone if they care to post it here on the forum.

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March 20, 2024 - 9:55 pm
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Tom D said
Hi Larry.

It was the Model 12 riot guns converted to trench guns by the military where they brazed a sleeve on the muzzle end of the tapered barrel to make the bayonet adaptor fit properly.   The three transverse grooves for the bayonet adaptor screws were cut into the sleeve.  I have a photo of the sleeve I can send to someone if they care to post it here on the forum.

  

Interesting. I never saw one with all the US martial shotguns I once owned. I used to put on displays at some of the Vegas shows as well as the old Great Western. I had many US shotguns. Never had the elusive M10 Remington’s. Had most all of the rest. You can post pics here. Very simple, even I can do it. DUH !!!   Big Larry

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March 21, 2024 - 2:52 am
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Send the pictures to me – [email protected]

Bert

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March 21, 2024 - 5:19 pm
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Bert was kind enough to add photos to message 13 above.

Two photos show late production Model 97 trench guns that have barrels with plugged sight holes that have the barrel band cuts in the barrel.  It seems that not all of the plugged barrel guns have the barrel band cuts in them.

The third photo is of the sleeve that was used to convert Model 12 riot guns to trench guns.

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