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WInchester 1897 Bluing Gone
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June 26, 2022 - 3:10 pm
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Hello, I have seen a quite a few 1897’s that the bluing is almost completely missing (including mine) and just have a patina with areas around the screws, chamber, mag tube where you can tell there are areas that are somewhat blued.  Were there certain years that they used a different metal where the bluing came off easier, or didn’t adhere as well?

Mine is a unique 1903, 20″ barrel that I’m leaving as-is, but I wish it had some bluing left to it.  I thought about selling it and was curious to know if the lack of bluing would affect the price.  I know re-bluing would negatively affect it!

 

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June 26, 2022 - 3:52 pm
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ahedgpe said   Were there certain years that they used a different metal where the bluing came off easier, or didn’t adhere as well?

Yes, but that change didn’t occur until 1919, when the nickel content of the rcvr. was increased, so that can’t be the cause of your bluing loss.  Furthermore, that change didn’t alter the durability of the brl. blue, because brls. were rust-blued.  So unless there was some difference in the alloy or bluing process of shotguns, compared to rifles, that I don’t know about, I’d guess handling-wear alone accounts for blue loss on your ’97.

Of course blue wear affects value adversely, quite adversely…unless you run into some eccentric like me who actually likes “grey guns.”  Rebluing puts it into the parts-gun category.

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June 26, 2022 - 6:31 pm
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ahedgpe said
Hello, I have seen a quite a few 1897’s that the bluing is almost completely missing (including mine) and just have a patina with areas around the screws, chamber, mag tube where you can tell there are areas that are somewhat blued.  Were there certain years that they used a different metal where the bluing came off easier, or didn’t adhere as well?

Mine is a unique 1903, 20″ barrel that I’m leaving as-is, but I wish it had some bluing left to it.  I thought about selling it and was curious to know if the lack of bluing would affect the price.  I know re-bluing would negatively affect it!

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Your Model 1897 Riot Gun is worth a lot more in its current condition than it would be if you have it reblued.  Like Clarence, I very much prefer an old “gray” gun that is still 100% factory original than I do one that has been refinished.

As for the bluing wear on your Model 1897, it looks exactly like it should for a gun that was carried and used for nearly 120-years.

For my research survey, what is the serial number on your gun?  Is the barrel marked “CYL” ?

Bert

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June 26, 2022 - 6:45 pm
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Bert H. said

ahedgpe said

Hello, I have seen a quite a few 1897’s that the bluing is almost completely missing (including mine) and just have a patina with areas around the screws, chamber, mag tube where you can tell there are areas that are somewhat blued.  Were there certain years that they used a different metal where the bluing came off easier, or didn’t adhere as well?

Mine is a unique 1903, 20″ barrel that I’m leaving as-is, but I wish it had some bluing left to it.  I thought about selling it and was curious to know if the lack of bluing would affect the price.  I know re-bluing would negatively affect it!

Capture.JPGImage Enlarger

  

Your Model 1897 Riot Gun is worth a lot more in its current condition than it would be if you have it reblued.  Like Clarence, I very much prefer an old “gray” gun that is still 100% factory original than I do one that has been refinished.

As for the bluing wear on your Model 1897, it looks exactly like it should for a gun that was carried and used for nearly 120-years.

For my research survey, what is the serial number on your gun?  Is the barrel marked “CYL” ?

Bert

  

Thanks. I don’t plan on changing it, was just curious if a change in metals or process occurred.

Bert, this one has an 1893 barrel on it and a customer order# stamped into the barrel, under the mag tube, near the receiver. It has the “12” at the top of the barrel near the receiver, but has no choke stamp on it. Last year, you told me Winchester liked to reuse parts they already had from the 1893s (barrel, buttstock, buttplate, etc) and reused then on the 1897s. Fun gun, that I’m now rethinking selling…

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June 26, 2022 - 7:02 pm
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ahedgpe said

Bert H. said

ahedgpe said

Hello, I have seen a quite a few 1897’s that the bluing is almost completely missing (including mine) and just have a patina with areas around the screws, chamber, mag tube where you can tell there are areas that are somewhat blued.  Were there certain years that they used a different metal where the bluing came off easier, or didn’t adhere as well?

Mine is a unique 1903, 20″ barrel that I’m leaving as-is, but I wish it had some bluing left to it.  I thought about selling it and was curious to know if the lack of bluing would affect the price.  I know re-bluing would negatively affect it!

Capture.JPGImage Enlarger

  

Your Model 1897 Riot Gun is worth a lot more in its current condition than it would be if you have it reblued.  Like Clarence, I very much prefer an old “gray” gun that is still 100% factory original than I do one that has been refinished.

As for the bluing wear on your Model 1897, it looks exactly like it should for a gun that was carried and used for nearly 120-years.

For my research survey, what is the serial number on your gun?  Is the barrel marked “CYL” ?

Bert

  

Thanks. I don’t plan on changing it, was just curious if a change in metals or process occurred.

Bert, this one has an 1893 barrel on it and a customer order# stamped into the barrel, under the mag tube, near the receiver. It has the “12” at the top of the barrel near the receiver, but has no choke stamp on it. Last year, you told me Winchester liked to reuse parts they already had from the 1893s (barrel, buttstock, buttplate, etc) and reused then on the 1897s. Fun gun, that I’m now rethinking selling…

  

Please contact me via email – [email protected]

Bert

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June 26, 2022 - 7:18 pm
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Bert H. said

ahedgpe said

Bert H. said

ahedgpe said

Hello, I have seen a quite a few 1897’s that the bluing is almost completely missing (including mine) and just have a patina with areas around the screws, chamber, mag tube where you can tell there are areas that are somewhat blued.  Were there certain years that they used a different metal where the bluing came off easier, or didn’t adhere as well?

Mine is a unique 1903, 20″ barrel that I’m leaving as-is, but I wish it had some bluing left to it.  I thought about selling it and was curious to know if the lack of bluing would affect the price.  I know re-bluing would negatively affect it!

Capture.JPGImage Enlarger

  

Your Model 1897 Riot Gun is worth a lot more in its current condition than it would be if you have it reblued.  Like Clarence, I very much prefer an old “gray” gun that is still 100% factory original than I do one that has been refinished.

As for the bluing wear on your Model 1897, it looks exactly like it should for a gun that was carried and used for nearly 120-years.

For my research survey, what is the serial number on your gun?  Is the barrel marked “CYL” ?

Bert

  

Thanks. I don’t plan on changing it, was just curious if a change in metals or process occurred.

Bert, this one has an 1893 barrel on it and a customer order# stamped into the barrel, under the mag tube, near the receiver. It has the “12” at the top of the barrel near the receiver, but has no choke stamp on it. Last year, you told me Winchester liked to reuse parts they already had from the 1893s (barrel, buttstock, buttplate, etc) and reused then on the 1897s. Fun gun, that I’m now rethinking selling…

  

Please contact me via email – [email protected]

Bert

  

Ok I sent you an email.

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June 27, 2022 - 12:14 am
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I was told, some years ago, that guns stored in leather cases back in the early 1900’s tended to loose the bluing due to the solvents used in tanning of the leather.  The guns didn’t rust to any extent, just had the loss of blue color.  Just sounded like a strong possibility to me.  RDB

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June 27, 2022 - 1:25 am
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rogertherelic said
I was told, some years ago, that guns stored in leather cases back in the early 1900’s tended to loose the bluing due to the solvents used in tanning of the leather.  The guns didn’t rust to any extent, just had the loss of blue color.  Just sounded like a strong possibility to me.  RDB

  

Roger,  I’m doubtful a great many guns were actually stored long-term in leather, other than take-downs in leg-of-mutton style cases.  Full length cases were usually canvas lined with flannel, which could promote rusting because the flannel held moisture under conditions of high humidy; sheep-skin lining was the worst about holding moisture, as the sad fate of several of my father’s guns demonstrated.

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June 27, 2022 - 6:59 pm
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Is seems, more than likely, I was misinformed about any chemical reaction that leather cases might have caused to the bluing.  I was unaware that leather gun cases weren’t used for storing guns for any extended periods of time.  Always happy to learn when I have been misinformed in the past.  Thanks.  RDB

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