July 31, 2005
From my own modest collection I pulled out four sporting rear sights that would have been common on 1873, 1876, single shot, 1886 and 1892 sporting rifles. Not sure about later models. I think some of the later 1866 rifles used the sporting rear sight as well.
From left to right an early cloverleaf sight, then a buckhorn variation. Early catalogs noted that rear sights were available with cloverleaf, buckhorn or any desired shape.
The two sights on the right show the later, longer base variation. The longer base variation starts showing in the 1884 catalogs. The early variations of the long base sight have a fixed notch. Later variations have an adjustable elevator with a little screw. As far as I can tell, the adjustable variation first shows up in November 1887 catalog.
Knowing Winchester and looking at photos in Gordon’s 1873 survey books, it appears there were many variations on sporting rear sights.
Does anyone know of these sporting rear sights that had the platinum sighting line? I know some factory records list “Platina” sights without giving any more information.
I call myself a collector as it sounds better than hoarder
June 4, 2017
November 2, 2009
I noticed the same thing. The sight on the far left has an elevator that was exclusive to the model 1876 .50 Express caliber. It has been my observation that these elevators only, have markings starting on the highest position 3, 2 1/2, 2, and 1 1/2. They are also the only elevators I have seen that have a “V” notch in the highest position. I have never seen this particular sight on anything other that the 1876 model in .50 Express caliber. Having said that, this does not mean that this is the only correct sight for the 1876 in .50 Express. I have had several that lettered with the later 3 leaf Express sight and a few others with the standard long leaf rear sight, marked 1876. Very nice selection of sights Bill and great to see you in the Springs.
May 2, 2009
Here are two of the earlier ones on the left. The reverse sight found on the early 73’s up to about serial 1250, they are a oval shape and then right after that the were made with the dovetail forward but still the oval shape, 2nd from the left. After that they started the clover leaf and buckhorn. As to the express elevator, I got one on a early 73 with the bumps but no elevation marks.
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