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Winchester 1897 in stainless?
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February 1, 2023 - 5:49 pm
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Hello Gentlemen, 

 

  I purchased a Winchester 1897 black diamond trap from my LGS yesterday. I bought it on site because I couldn’t believe what it was. Now searching the internet I still can’t figure it out, so here I am. 

  The gun, it is a 1897 trap gun as engraved on the bolt. The beautiful high grade walnut stock has a black diamond on it. The guys at the gun shop didn’t mention that but I found info on the black diamond online. According to the GS owner this shotgun dates to around 1904. Now for the interesting/ confusing part. This gun appears to be all stainless. I have looked all over and I can find no mention of any winchesters of that age that were stainless steel. It looks just like all other 1897 trap guns except it is completely silver. I will post pictures later today. One other thing it has one of those fancy adjustable butt plates. Anyone seen anything like this. It is also in absolutely amazing condition.

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February 1, 2023 - 6:11 pm
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Hello Chris,

Winchester did not introduce Stainless Steel alloy barrels until September 1926.  The receiver frames were never manufactured using stainless steel.  Accordingly, I suspect that somebody intentionally removed the factory bluing, and restocked the gun.

What is the serial number on the gun you acquired?  Can you send pictures of the gun to me?

Bert – [email protected]

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February 1, 2023 - 6:43 pm
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My recollection is that the rifles and shotguns that Winchester manufactured with stainless barrels were all stamped as such – STAINLESS STEEL.

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February 1, 2023 - 6:50 pm
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steve004 said
My recollection is that the rifles and shotguns that Winchester manufactured with stainless barrels were all stamped as such – STAINLESS STEEL.

  

Your recollection is correct…

Stainless-barrel-857394.jpgImage Enlarger

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February 1, 2023 - 7:16 pm
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Chris Scott said
 

It looks just like all other 1897 trap guns except it is completely silver.

Suspect metal has been polished bright.  Does lettering on brl appear sharp & crisp, or “smoothed over”?

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February 2, 2023 - 2:01 am
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OK, here are the pictures of the Model 1897 Trap Gun in question.  It positively (100%) has been buffed and polished, and the stocks poorly refinished after an amateur attempt to recut the checkering.  Somebody spent a lot of time and effort to remove all of the bluing, but they failed to remove the bluing in the deeply stamped “TRAP GUN” marking on the bolt.

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February 2, 2023 - 3:08 am
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Well Thank you Bert. I can see it better now. It looked pretty good to me. I bought it more because I could and I liked it. Gonna be fun to shoot a few rounds of trap with it. I’m guessing the adjustable butt plate was added. 

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February 2, 2023 - 3:14 am
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Chris Scott said
Well Thank you Bert. I can see it better now. It looked pretty good to me. I bought it more because I could and I liked it. Gonna be fun to shoot a few rounds of trap with it. I’m guessing the adjustable butt plate was added. 

  

Yes, the Morgan adjustable butt plate is an aftermarket alteration.

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February 2, 2023 - 3:27 am
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Chris Scott said
Well Thank you Bert. I can see it better now. It looked pretty good to me. I bought it more because I could and I liked it. Gonna be fun to shoot a few rounds of trap with it. I’m guessing the adjustable butt plate was added. 

  

I agree, would be fun to shoot a few rounds with this old 1897!

 

Mike

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February 2, 2023 - 2:39 pm
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Scott,

If it’s any consolation, most of the cost to refinish a firearm is in the polishing, so you should be able to find a smith willing to blue your ’97 relatively cheaply.  I’d definitely suggest getting a finish put on it because it’s very susceptible to rust in its current state. Mark 

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February 2, 2023 - 4:26 pm
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Mark Douglas said
Scott,

If it’s any consolation, most of the cost to refinish a firearm is in the polishing, so you should be able to find a smith willing to blue your ’97 relatively cheaply.  I’d definitely suggest getting a finish put on it because it’s very susceptible to rust in its current state. Mark 

  

That’s true, but considering the sad condition of the stock, I’d question whether it would be worth the cost.  I saw a very expensive Italian shotgun left “in the white,” because it showed the full coverage engraving to better effect.  Rust is definitely a concern, but I think waxing it (after heating the steel) would prevent that problem at no additional cost. 

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