Winchester Model 52 Pre-A .22 LR 28″ Speed Lock Bolt Rifle, MFD 1930 C&R
SOLD FOR: $1025
Model: 52 Pre-A, Speedlock
Serial Number: 20419
Year of Manufacture: 1930
Caliber: .22 Long Rifle
Action Type: Bolt Action Rifle with Detachable Magazine
Markings: The left side of the barrel is marked “MODEL 52”, -“WINCHESTER / -TRADE MARK-”- and “22 LONG R.-”. The left rear of the barrel and left side of the receiver’s chamber ring are marked with an ovalled “WP” proof mark. The left side of the chamber ring is also marked with the serial number, “20419”. The right side of the barrel is marked “MADE IN U.S.A. WINCHESTER REPEATING ARMS CO. NEW HAVEN, CONN.” above patent dates. The right side of the chamber ring is marked “PAT. PENDING”. The bottom of the bolt is hand inscribed with the serial number “20419”.
Barrel Length: 28”
Sights/Optics: The front sight is a globe sight with a circular aperture insert, it is dovetailed into a base that is fixed to the barrel. The barrel has two pairs of drilled, tapped, and filled holes at the rear. The rear sight is a Lyman aperture peep sight that is dovetailed into the receiver.
Stock Configuration and Condition: The stock is a one-piece walnut with a pistol grip, a straight comb, and a flat shotgun-style checkered steel buttplate. The stock has a barrel band with a sling swivel and there is a sling swivel inlet into the belly. There are some scattered light handling marks. There are some scattered compressions, draglines, and a few small dings. There are no chips or cracks. The LOP measures 13” from the front of the trigger to the back of the buttplate. The buttplate has some discoloration, light patina, finish loss (mostly on the edges), and a few flattened checkers. Overall, the stock is in Fine condition.
Type of Finish: Blued
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is mostly bright with sharp rifling. There is no erosion in the bore, but minor stubborn fouling can be seen scattered about.
Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 90% of its metal finish. The receiver has some little nicks and scratches. There are some light handling marks on the receiver. The bottom metal shows some scattered patina, finish loss, and some light surface oxidation. There are some scattered little nicks and marks through the finish on the barrel. There are a few scuffs on the barrel that have thinned the finish. The edges of the muzzle shows some finish loss. There are a few little spots of minor surface frost. The bolt handle has finish loss. Screw heads range from sharp to lightly tool-marked, all have strong slots. All markings are clear, the markings on the right of the chamber ring are light. Overall, this rifle rates in Very Good-Fine condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly and smoothly. We have not fired this rifle. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork, and Accessories: This rifle includes one (1) 5-round magazine and a leather sling.
Our Assessment: The tradition of target shooting has a long history in this world, whether it was for training purposes or just trying to dispel boredom. Among firearms used for this sport, a handful truly stand out from the rest and one of those is the Winchester Model 52 on offer here. Winchester has a long history of creating excellent sporting guns. Despite their pursuance of military contracts throughout their operation, Winchester addressed civilian shooting needs consistently and spectacularly. World War I inspired an extensive change and evolution in technology, but it also saw the continued use of bolt action rifles, a reliable design that Winchester continued for the Model 52. The Post-War Production Planning Committee decided to discontinue the Model 1885 Single Shot and started the replacement process for a bolt action rifle with the same cartridge on November 28, 1917. Exactly one day later, Winchester engineers Frank Burton and T.C. Johnson received orders to “begin work on the bolt action .22 as time permits.” The early rifle samples were immediately slotted for exhibition at the National Match in Caldwell, NJ in August 1919. Built on the same tooling used to produce the Model 1917, the yet-to-be-named bolt action .22 samples earned phenomenal accolades upon its performance at Caldwell. The iconic rifle received its official numeric designation of “52” on September 11, 1919; though, the design would undergo subsequent changes. This particular Model 52 is a “Pre-Type A Speed Lock” rifle, meaning it was built after Frank Burton introduced an updated lock mechanism in 1929 and before Winchester altered the design in 1935 for safety concerns. The “Speed Lock” designation refers to Frank Burton’s new design for the rifle’s lock mechanism that provided almost instantaneous cartridge ignition when users pulled the trigger. Later Type A rifles included a shorter safety stem and a redesigned safety seat in the left receiver wall that corrected a known malfunction where the safety failed to properly engage the head of the firing pin. Considered one of the greatest of all time American 22 rifles, Winchester continued to market and produce the Model 52 for decades. It is such a beloved favorite that Winchester continued to manufacture this rifle at a loss to the company during its final years. Evolving from a first-class general target rifle into a precision tool that represented the United States in world competitions, the Model 52 is a classic design that belongs in your collection. So, bid on this beauty and enjoy!