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Question Model 1887
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January 14, 2023 - 2:22 am
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A guy at a local gun shop has a Model 1887 which I looked at this afternoon. The gun is serial number 9182, an early one made in 1888. I was first perplexed by the gun because it has proof marks on both the barrel and receiver. If the proof marks were just on the barrel I would conclude a replacement but it has the proof marks on the receiver also. This gun was manufactured a long time before I always thought proof marks started (about 1905). It is a 12 guage and is stamped “12” on the side of the barrel – the choke (Full) is also stamped on the barrel, just below the guage designation. Other Model 1887’s I have examined, including one in my personal collection are stamped with the guage in the middle of the barrel. I have found an old Forum post in which Bert indicated that apparently Winchester started proof marking on the Model 1887 way before they did on other models. I did not take that to mean 17 years earlier. Here are a few photos:

87ga.jpgImage Enlarger87pm.jpgImage Enlarger87rcvr.jpgImage Enlarger87ssn.jpgImage Enlarger

As always, any words of widsom are greatly appreciated.

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January 14, 2023 - 6:46 pm
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Burt,

I highly suspect that it was returned to Winchester for a new barrel sometime after 1905.  The CFM can confirm.

Bert

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January 14, 2023 - 7:09 pm
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Bert H. said
Burt,

I highly suspect that it was returned to Winchester for a new barrel sometime after 1905.  The CFM can confirm.

Bert

  It has identical proof marks on both the barrel and receiver.The gun was manufactured in 1888 – a long time before proof marks. Could the entire gun have been returned to Winchester for some reason and at that time Winchester added both proof marks?87proof.jpgImage Enlarger

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January 14, 2023 - 7:13 pm
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Yes, that would be my assumption.  If you have the CFM check the records, I highly suspect that it will show an “R&R” sometime after July 1905.

Bert

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January 14, 2023 - 7:23 pm
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Bert H. said
Yes, that would be my assumption.  If you have the CFM check the records, I highly suspect that it will show an “R&R” sometime after July 1905.

Bert

  

Did the real early 87’s have the guage mark placed on the side of the barrel instead of the middle like all the others I have looked at?

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January 14, 2023 - 7:29 pm
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Burt Humphrey said

Bert H. said

Yes, that would be my assumption.  If you have the CFM check the records, I highly suspect that it will show an “R&R” sometime after July 1905.

Bert

  

Did the real early 87’s have the guage mark placed on the side of the barrel instead of the middle like all the others I have looked at?

  

No they did not.  The Gauge marking should be on the top of the barrel (12 o’clock) on all original Model 1887 barrels.

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January 14, 2023 - 7:39 pm
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Bert H. said

Burt Humphrey said

Bert H. said

Yes, that would be my assumption.  If you have the CFM check the records, I highly suspect that it will show an “R&R” sometime after July 1905.

Bert

  

Did the real early 87’s have the guage mark placed on the side of the barrel instead of the middle like all the others I have looked at?

  

No they did not.  The Gauge marking should be on the top of the barrel (12 o’clock) on all original Model 1887 barrels.

  

That is what I thought – here is a 87 from my collection which is what I see on these early guns – mine was made in 1897 and no proof marks. 

87ssnltr.jpgImage Enlarger

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January 14, 2023 - 7:49 pm
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What I have found on a number of Model 1887 barrels is a “WP” inside an oval, but the letters are not superposed like the later proof marks.  The “WP is sometimes on the side of the barrel and more often on the underside of the barrel.

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January 14, 2023 - 8:10 pm
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Bert H. said
What I have found on a number of Model 1887 barrels is a “WP” inside an oval, but the letters are not superposed like the later proof marks.  The “WP is sometimes on the side of the barrel and more often on the underside of the barrel.

  

I will tell the guy that owns the gun he should inquire with the CFM and see if there is a R&R. See photo – the proof marks look correct but surely too early to have been there from 1888 when the gun was manufactured – and, the guage stamp on the side of the barrel does not make sense unless maybe it got a new barrel at the factory and Winchester proof stamped both the barrel and receiver and placed the “12” on the side of the barrel so as to not interfere with the barrel proof mark?

87pm-3.jpgImage Enlarger

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January 14, 2023 - 9:15 pm
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Dollars to donuts that gun was returned to Winchester for a new barrel, and it was proof tested and marked before it was returned to the owner.

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January 15, 2023 - 5:56 pm
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Bert H. said
Dollars to donuts that gun was returned to Winchester for a new barrel, and it was proof tested and marked before it was returned to the owner.

  

Thanks Bert – you and I are betting on the same horse! Lately I have developed a great appreciation of these old lever action shotguns and never realized how hard it is to find one with condition which is original, correct and has not been messed with.

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