Sold For: $2,075
Model: 1885 High Wall
Serial Number: None (“Some tangs, especially with replacement set triggers, did not have serial numbers”, The Winchester Book, Madis)
Year of Manufacture: 1913-1920 (the tang markings are consistent with production in or after the 100,000 serial range)
Caliber: .32-40 Winchester
Action Type: Lever Actuated Falling Block Single Shot with Double Set Trigger
Markings: The top of the barrel is marked “MANUFACTURED BY THE WINCHESTER REPEATING ARMS CO. / NEW HAVEN, CONN. U.S.A. PATENTED OCTOBER 7, 1879.” in front of the rear sight dovetail and at the receiver with “32-40”. The barrel and chamber ring each have an ovalled “WP” proof. The top tang is marked “PAT. OCT. 7TH 79. / -WINCHESTER- / TRADE MARK”. The bottom tang is marked “PAT. / OCT. 7. 79.”. The bottom of the barrel is marked “3” just forward of the octagonal portion, “3” and “C” between the forend lug and mainspring lug. Under the mainspring is marked “S”, “3”, “32-40”, “VP” in oval, and a triangular inspection mark.
Barrel Length: 30″, #3 Half Octagonal, Half Round
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a Beech-style folding sight presenting either a white bead or a post inside a ring, dovetailed to the front of the barrel. There is a dovetail toward the rear of the barrel filled with a blank. The top tang is drilled and tapped with a folding Lyman aperture sight, adjustable for elevation. There are two male dovetail mounts at the front and rear of the octagonal portion of the barrel with a fixed forward ring and rear ring adjustable for windage and elevation holding a Winchester A5 scope, 5x with beaded post reticle. The scope has scattered light surface oxidation and finish wear, the lenses need a good cleaning, in about Good condition.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The stocks are two-piece walnut with checkered beavertail forend, straight grip, straight comb and steel crescent buttplate. The stocks have several scattered light nicks, scuffs and scratches. The forend has a few more notable scattered dings. The checkering is generally well defined. There are no chips cracks. The LOP measures 13 1/8″ and 12 1/4″ from the fronts of the triggers to the back of the buttplate. The plate has mostly worn to white with some scattered light surface oxidation. Overall, the stocks are in about Very Good condition.
Type of Finish: Blued
Finish Originality: Original to the parts, some parts may be replacements (e.g. trigger and bottom tang assembly).
Bore Condition: The bore is bright with sharp rifling. There is no erosion in the bore.
Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 75% of its current metal finish. The finish is thinning at all edges. There are several scattered light nicks, scuffs, scratches and spots of minor surface oxidation. The lever’s case color has muted, but some figuring can still be seen. The action shows light operational wear. The screw heads range from sharp to tool marked with strong slots. The markings are clear. Overall, this rifle is in about Very Good condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The hammer has a safety notch. The trigger breaks crisply and is quite light when set. The lever locks up solidly. We have not fired this rifle. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: None.
Our Assessment: When they were first manufactured, the John Browning designed Winchester Model 1885 rifles were deemed stronger than the prior Sharps rifles, and the different sight and trigger options available made them an instant hit with hunters and target shooters alike. The Model 1885 rifles were targeted at competitors in “Match Shooting”, a sport which was extremely popular from about 1871 to 1917. The Winchester rifles challenged the Sharps, Remington, Maynard and Ballard rifles, and quickly became known for their reliability and accuracy. Major Ned Roberts, inventor of the .257 Roberts cartridge, described the Model 1885 as “the most reliable, strongest and altogether best single shot rifle ever produced”. This example is chambered for .32-40 Winchester with a 30″ #3 half-octagon barrel. The rifle has some wear and oxidation on the exterior, but retains a great bore and strong mechanics. It has a nice set of iron sights as well as a vintage Winchester A5 scope. This old Winchester will make a nice addition to any collection and should also still make for a great shooter. Please see our photos and good luck!
CA Legal or CA Private Party Transferable (THIS SECTION DOES NOT APPLY TO OUT-OF-STATE RESIDENTS): This C&R CAN be transferred in California. All C&R firearms must be transferred through your local dealer OR at our Simi Valley location; we cannot ship directly to a C&R holder in California. Out of state residents can disregard this section – your local laws apply.