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Winchester 1897 low serial 985
September 29, 2016
7:02 pm
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duckduckno
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Hello,

I recently bought a Winchester 1897 with a serial number of only 985. It was said to have been from an estate in Colorado. 

I looked on the website here and it says that shotguns with serial  numbers below around 30,000 are actually winchester 1893 models...but what I have is a model 1897. How can this be? Is this some early test pre production model? last patent date on the barrel is 1896. It only says 12 on the barrel. There is a stamp of pat applied for inside the action.

Does anyone have any idea about this?

I tried to add some pictures but the site keeps returning errors and does not allow links.

September 29, 2016
8:17 pm
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Kingston, WA
Forum Posts: 9470
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April 15, 2005
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The Model 1897 serialization was a continuation of the Model 1893.  Serial numbers 1 - 34,000+ were Model 1893s.  In the low 34,100 serial range, production of the Model 1897 began.  Therefore, it is not possible to have a Model 1897 with serial number "985".  More than likely, your Model 1897 has at time in its past been buffed, polished, and reblued.  You can send pictures to me at Win1885@msn.com

Bert

WACA 6571L, Historian & Board of Director Member
High-walls-1-002-C-reduced2.jpg

September 30, 2016
4:35 pm
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duckduckno
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Bert H. said
The Model 1897 serialization was a continuation of the Model 1893.  Serial numbers 1 - 34,000+ were Model 1893s.  In the low 34,100 serial range, production of the Model 1897 began.  Therefore, it is not possible to have a Model 1897 with serial number "985".  More than likely, your Model 1897 has at time in its past been buffed, polished, and reblued.  You can send pictures to me at Win1885@msn.com

Bert  

Yeah that's what I have read everywhere as well, but this really does not look like it was buffed off. Currently, I'm emailing someone at cody firearms museum to see if they have any idea. If they can find anything I will pay them for a letter. Also, I will send you some pictures to see what you think. Glad to see you post since you seem to know a lot. 

September 30, 2016
8:52 pm
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Kingston, WA
Forum Posts: 9470
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April 15, 2005
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The CFM can not provide a letter for Model 1897 serial number 985, as it does not exist. What you would receive is the information for Model 1893 serial number 985.

Bert

WACA 6571L, Historian & Board of Director Member
High-walls-1-002-C-reduced2.jpg

September 30, 2016
9:23 pm
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duckduckno
Guests

Bert H. said
The CFM can not provide a letter for Model 1897 serial number 985, as it does not exist. What you would receive is the information for Model 1893 serial number 985.
Bert  

Hmm, The guy I bought it from is a marlin/winchester collector and he insists that it was made when they were transitioning to the model 1897 from the model 1893. He says it is extremely rare. I will let you know when I hear back from cfm.

October 1, 2016
12:42 pm
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Kingston, WA
Forum Posts: 9470
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April 15, 2005
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You bought a "story" from the seller. Model 1897 transition guns were serial numbered in the 34149 - 34984 range. Serial number 34149 was the first Model 1897 shotgun manufactured on June 1st, 1897.

While you are waiting to here back from the CFM, why not send me the pictures of your gun?

Bert

WACA 6571L, Historian & Board of Director Member
High-walls-1-002-C-reduced2.jpg

October 1, 2016
1:20 pm
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duckduckno
Guests

Bert H. said
You bought a "story" from the seller. Model 1897 transition guns were serial numbered in the 34149 - 34984 range. Serial number 34149 was the first Model 1897 shotgun manufactured on June 1st, 1897.
While you are waiting to here back from the CFM, why not send me the pictures of your gun?
Bert  

I sent you pictures to your email yesterday.

October 2, 2016
2:44 am
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Kingston, WA
Forum Posts: 9470
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April 15, 2005
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I will have to check my Junk mail folder.

Bert

WACA 6571L, Historian & Board of Director Member
High-walls-1-002-C-reduced2.jpg

October 3, 2016
1:18 am
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Kingston, WA
Forum Posts: 9470
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April 15, 2005
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For those that are interested, the gun in question is a completely refinished Model 1897 with a fake serial number applied.  The new owner of the gun paid $1,000 for it, and is now aware that he made a huge mistake.  Unfortunately, he did not take the news well, and chose to lash out in anger.  Accordingly, I am locking this thread, and am banning his further participation on out forum.

Bert

WACA 6571L, Historian & Board of Director Member
High-walls-1-002-C-reduced2.jpg

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