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New 94 arrived have questions about the sights.
March 14, 2015
1:55 pm
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Hello All,

Just received my first Winchester M94 and had a few questions about the sights. The gun is a 1924 manufacture date in 30WCF. The tang sight is a Marbles, and I believe that the barrel sight is also a Marbles (from what I was able to research). I have no idea about the front sight. 

Could these be original to the rifle or after market items?

Barrel sight needs a spring, not sure how much effort that would entail.

Any info would be greatly appreciated.

Cheers

Mark

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March 14, 2015
3:45 pm
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Marks,

Look at the top of the barrel, aft of the rear barrel sight for wear in the finish. That will show if it had another type of sight on it. Also remove the tang sight. If there is real nice blue under it, then there has been a tang sight on it for a long time. My guess those sights would of been put on afterwards.

Bob

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March 15, 2015
7:50 pm
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Hey Bob, 

 

You nailed it... there is a little worn spot in front of the rear barrel sight. Unknown about the tang sight as I don't have a screw driver yet to fit it. I don't want to use my regular ones as I don't want to mess up the screw. ordering a set today.

Is there any way to date the Marbles Tang sight an rear barrel sight?

BTW, took it out and shot it yesterday.... very lose group. Still shoots great at almost 100 yrs old.

Cheers

Mark

March 15, 2015
9:59 pm
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Mark,

The tang sight was patented in 1903 from what I got from their web sight. The barrel sight first showed up in 1915 in their catalog as being made by King and called the No. 7 King Semi Buckhorn until 1918 then in 1950 it showed up and was made by Marbles and called a No. 70 Semi-Buckhorn leaf.

Here is the PDF for their catalogs

Take a picture of the wear area on the barrel and I might be able to tell what sight was on it.

Bob

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March 15, 2015
10:06 pm
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Mark

I agree with Bob that all three sights are probably not original to the carbine.  The rear barrel sight was usually the Winchester 44A Carbine Rear Sight.  That specific style of Marble tang sight with those markings was made sometime after 1911 probably and could have been made much later.  Marble sights are also less commonly found on Winchesters from the factory than Lyman.  I would be surprised if the tang sight was factory.  You could read through this to learn more:

http://www.marblearms.com/pdf/GunSightsBook.pdf

That sight set up is probably one of the best a guy could have for hunting as long as the middle leaf stays up or down when you want it to.  Those middle leaf sights made by Marble are on ebay quite a bit or maybe the spring is fixable.  I have a feeling a lot of guys bought tang sights or other replacement sights right in the same hardware store they bought the gun in sometimes.  They also probably changed them to their preference when buying a used gun.  If you took a good picture of the barrel wear from the rear sight we might be able to tell exactly what's been on it before.

There's nothing wrong with the sights on there if you like them and they work.  They don't look bad and it's part of the history.  Lots of times Joe Blow puts some random sights on a gun to try and "make it right" before it gets sold, but I'd personally be appreciative of a carbine that one owner took the time to set up the way it worked best and used it. 

Brad

Regards

Brad Dunbar

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March 15, 2015
10:13 pm
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I guess I should have wrote a shorter post. 

Although that style of tang sight first patent marking was Oct. 1903, those sights went through several variations and markings.  The early variations do not look like that.  It is really not all that important with this carbine I guess since it's from 1924.

Brad

Regards

Brad Dunbar

http://1895book.com/

March 17, 2015
1:06 am
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Mark

Your carbine and its sights had me thinking about one of my own guns. In very similar circumstances I also joined this forum and later WACA with a lot of questions. After a time I posted some information on the first Model 1894 Rifle I bought hoping to generate some discussion beyond basic yes and no answers in the hopes of learning anything. I think that post is probably long gone but a few years later I thought it would be good to revisit.

I remember looking at this rifle and what really stood out to me was the bore. The first Winchesters I bought were pretty rough and the bores were not good. This one was shiny. I remember thinking that of all of the new-to-me Winchesters out there I was not going to buy a 30/30. I had previously only associated the caliber with the post war carbines the neighbors hunted with and it was probably when I bought the Winchester Handbook that I found out they also made 30 WCF rifles way back then! The 1907 manufactured 1894 Sporting Rifle came home regardless of any previous misconceptions about any 30/30s... and I’m glad it did.

What seemed like a bad thing at the time was discovering that none of the sights on the rifle were original to the rifle. It had a generic piece of junk in the front dovetail, a blank in the rear and a broken tang sight on which elevation could not be adjusted or secured at the time (I was able to repair it partially). Maybe someone took every original sight off the rifle before they parted with it?  I imagined an old timer who had once set it up just the way he wanted it.  I imagined a hunter who walked around still hunting in the late fall and winter, a real expert.   He was one of those guys that got his deer every year, probably with one shot. Bullets carry pretty good out of that long octagon barrel.   The exterior got some wear but the bore was kept clean. At least that’s how I’d like to think it went!  However, those sights were long gone.  I tried a few different replacement sights on it and shot it some. It seemed like a good rifle, but it would take a few years for me to get it just the way I wanted it. The Lyman No.1 tang sight came walking through a gun show a couple years ago. Another WACA member sold me a Three Leaf Express that matched the wear on the barrel and the Lyman No.5 with a taller base, perfect for me. (If he would happen to read this I hope he’s glad to see some of his Dad’s old sights in use.) It’s the main gun that I carry around. I’ve found it does very well with 150 grain bullets and the more I learn about hand loads and the act of shooting the rifle, the better it seems to get.  I shot the rifle a bit yesterday in fact.

Anyway here are a few pictures. It’s not really a great collector’s prize or anything but it’s been a great experience learning about this rifle the last few years. It has been a pleasure to put some sights on it that at least are close to period correct but 100% correct as far as function.  I hope you will enjoy your carbine or whatever gun becomes a favorite that you reach for when you want to purely shoot.

Brad

 

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Regards

Brad Dunbar

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March 17, 2015
12:02 pm
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Hey guys,

Thank you for the replies and information!!  I would have replied earlier but I didn't get the email notifications (I forgot to 'subscribe' to the thread.. ugh!

Bob, I'll post some pics in a couple of days of the barrel and the wear.

Brad, what a fantastic rifle!

I love the research that you guys posted and will read through all of it. I get kinda OCD when I get interested in something and read everything I can get my hands on!

I really appreciate the help!!

Cheers

Mark

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