SOLD FOR: $1026
Serial Number: 74429
Year of Manufacture: 1915
Caliber: .30-03 (.30 U.S. Mod. 1903)
Action Type: Lever Action with Internal Box Magazine.
Markings: The left side of the receiver is marked “MANUFACTURED BY THE WINCHESTER REPEATING ARMS CO. NEW HAVEN. CONN. U.S.A. / PATENTED NOV.5.95.NOV.12.95.AUG.17.97.JAN.25.98.AUG.23.98.AUG.6.1907.”. The upper tang is marked “MODEL 1895 / -WINCHESTER- / TRADE MARK REG. IN U.S. PAT. OFF.”. The lower tang is marked “74429” and “B”. The top-left of the chamber ring and the top rear of the barrel are marked with a circled “WP” proof. The left side of the barrel is marked “-NICKEL STEEL BARREL- / ESPECIALLY FOR SMOKELESS POWDER” and “.30 U.S. MOD. 1903.”.
Barrel Length: 24?
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a blade dovetailed to a base at the front of the barrel. The rear sight is “U”-notch elevator sight, the notch is fine-adjustable for elevation. The bolt has had a dovetail cut at the rear for a bolt-mounted sight (none present).
Stock Configuration & Condition: The stocks are two-piece smooth walnut with ventilated brown rubber recoil pad, Schnabel forend tip with ebony insert, straight grip and straight comb. The stocks have scattered light nicks, dings, scuffs and scratches. There is a more notable ding in the top of the wrist to the left of the top tang and another in the left-front of the forend. The inlet for a steel buttplate’s tang has been filled at the heel. There is what appears to be shaping wear around the rear of the buttstock and the grip areas show thinning finish. There is a tiny loss at the top-front corner of the wrist on the left. There are no cracks. The LOP measures 13” from the front of the trigger to the back of the recoil pad, 12 1/8″ to the back of the wood. The tang inlet indicates that the stock originally had a crescent buttplate, it has at least been cut straight, likely also cut back a little bit. The pad shows minor wear and is still fairly supple. The stocks rate in about Good-Very Good overall condition as altered.
Type of Finish: Blued
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The lands are semi-bright, the grooves are gray. The rifling is well defined. There is scattered light erosion in the bore, mostly in the grooves. Our gauge shows an ME of about 3.5.
Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 70% of its metal finish. The finish is thinning at all edges. There is scattered finish wear, primarily on the barrel forward of the forend, the top of the receiver and top tang. There are scattered light nicks, scuffs and scratches. Some of the worn areas show discoloration from oxidation. There are infrequent spots of minor surface erosion, most notable on the chamber ring to the right of the matted portion. The action shows operational wear. The screw heads range from sharp to tool marked with strong slots and there are tool marks around some screw heads. The markings are clear. Overall, this rifle is in Good-Very Good condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The action is smooth. The trigger is crisp. The lever locks up correctly. 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: The 1895 Winchester was the first lever-action model to incorporate a box magazine. The box magazine allowed the use of spitzer-type bullets without the danger of ignition in a tubular magazine. The use of spitzer bullets improved ballistics and allowed for much higher velocities, especially with the use of smokeless powder. At the time of its introduction, the 1895 was considered the lever action big-game rifle, but it also saw favor with some militaries, being purchased in large numbers by the Russian Empire for WWI, given to Pancho Villa’s best troops during the Mexican Revolution, and 10,000 were purchased by the US Military for use during the Spanish American War. Teddy Roosevelt himself favored the 1895 Winchester, considering his rifle chambered in .405 to be the “medicine gun” for lion.
With its quick handling characteristics, box magazine and pointed bullet capability, the Model 1895 changed the world of sporting rifles forever. This rifle is a version which was made in 1915 with a barrel chambered in .30-03. The .30-03 was only a standard chambering for the 1895 from its introduction in 1905 until 1908 when it was replaced by the new .30-06 cartridge. After 1908, the .30-03 was only available by special order, indicating that this is a special order rifle. The rifle has been further customized with a recoil pad and the bolt has had a dovetail cut for a bolt-mounted sight, though none is present. This example shows its age, but is a neat specimen of a special-order, Model 1895. Please see our photos and good luck!