SOLD FOR: $1500
Make: Winchester Repeating Arms
Serial Number: 68870
Year of Manufacture: 1896
Caliber: .38-55 WCF
Action Type: This rifle has a lever action with a tubular magazine.
Markings: The top of the barrel is marked “-MANUFACTURED BY THE- / -WINCHESTER REPEATING ARMS CO. NEW HAVEN CONN. U.S.A.-” in front of the rear sight and “38-55” at the rear. The underside of the receiver is marked “68870”. The upper tang is marked “MODEL 1894 / -WINCHESTER- / PAT. AUG. 21. 1894”.
Barrel Length: The octagonal barrel has been cut to 20″.
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a german silver blade in a slotted base, dovetailed to the front of the barrel. The rear sight is a flat-top “U”-notch elevator sight dovetailed to the rear of the barrel. The rear sight has scattered solid erosion. The top tang is drilled, tapped and filled for a tang sight (none present).
Stock Configuration & Condition: The stocks are 2-piece smooth walnut with capped forend, straight grip, straight comb and steel carbine-style buttplate. The stocks have scattered light-moderate nicks, dings, scuffs and scratches. There are a series of notches in the bottom-front of the forend which appear to have been intentionally applied. There are a pair of cracks in the left-front of the forend. There is a small loss at the top-front of the wrist on the right. The LOP measures 13″ from the front of the trigger to the back of the buttplate. The plate has gone to a mottled light patina with scattered light scratches and some spots of erosion. Given the carbine-style buttplate with a capped forend, it is likely that the buttstock is not original to the gun. Overall, the stocks are in about Good-plus condition as Antique.
Type of Finish: Blued
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is gray with well defined rifling. There is light erosion and light-moderate pitting scattered through the bore.
Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 10% of its metal finish. The finish remains in protected areas such as the bottom of the barrel over the magazine tube, the sides of the barrel over the forend, and the top of the magazine tube. Other surfaces have gone to a light patina with some scattered spots of light erosion. There are scattered nicks, scuffs and scratches with more notable tool marks at the rear sight dovetail. The action shows operational wear. The screw heads range from sharp to to disfigured with useable slots. The markings are clear. Overall, this rifle is in Good-plus condition as Antique.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The hammer has a half-cock safety and there is a lever safety. The lever locks up properly and the trigger is crisp. We did not fire this rifle. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: None.
Our Assessment: This is a Winchester Model 1894 Rifle made in 1896. Its octagonal barrel is chambered for .38-55 and has been cut to 20″. The .38-55 WCF was originally developed by Ballard and could push a 250gr projectile at about 1,300 fps. This makes it a nice rifle for black bear and other similar sized game and has remained a somewhat popular cartridge, perhaps most due to the large number of Winchester rifles chambered for the round. The gun has honest wear consistent with use in the field over the last 125 years. This early Winchester M1894 rifle may interest the Winchester collectors with its “been-there, done-that” appearance, but would also be well worth restoring and getting back out in the field. Please see our photos and good luck!