Winchester 1873 3rd Model 24″ Octagonal .32-20 Lever Action Rifle, MFD 1890

SOLD FOR: $1880

LSB#: 220503LB002


1873 Rifle, 3rd Model

Serial Number: 

Year of Manufacture: 
Ca. 1890

.32-20 Winchester (32 Winchester Center Fire)

Action Type: 
Lever Action with Full Length Tubular Magazine

The top of the barrel is marked “WINCHESTER’S REPEATING ARMS. NEW HAVEN. CONN. U.S.A. / -KING’S IMPROVEMENT PATENTED MARCH 29.1866. OCTOBER 16.1860.-” in front of the rear sight and “32 W.C.F.” at the chamber. The lower tang is marked “361373B”. The upper tang is marked “Model. 1873” and the lifter is marked “32 CAL”..

Barrel Length: 
24″, Octagonal

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 “V”-notch semi-buckhorn leaf and elevator sight dovetailed to the rear of the barrel. The slide-step elevator is present. The top tang is factory drilled, tapped and filled for a peep sight (none included).

Stock Configuration & Condition: 
The stocks are two-piece smooth walnut with capped forend, straight grip, and steel crescent buttplate. The stocks have scattered nicks, dings, scuffs and scratches but retain the original finish with age darkening at the metal. There are a few cmall chips, but no cracks. The wood to metal fit does not suggest any sanding, The LOP measures 12 3/4″ from the front of the trigger to the back of the buttplate. The plate has mostly gone to a moderate-dark patina with some surface erosion and wear consistent with the rest of the rifle. Overall, the stocks are in about Good-Very Good condition as Antique.

Type of Finish:

Finish Originality: 

Bore Condition: 
The bore is gray with well defined rifling. There is erosion scattered through the bore with infrequent pitting.

Overall Condition: 
This rifle retains about 5% of its metal finish in protected areas. The surfaces have mostly gone to a moderate patina with some scattered solid erosion and some edges worn to white. There is evidence of heavy cleaning to the top of the frame, with some unexplained dings here as well. The screw heads range from sharp to disfigured with useable slots. The markings are legible. Overall, this rifle is in Good-Very Good condition as Antique.

The action functions correctly. There is a lever lock on the lower tang, and a dust cover rail on the receiver, typical of the Third Models, and a lever safety. 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: 

Our Assessment: 
One of the most successful, and certainly one of the most famous Winchester rifles was the Winchester Model 1873, known as “The Gun that Won the West” for its predominant role in the hands of Western settlers. The gun needs no introduction and chances are you’ve seen one. More than 720,00 were produced from 1873 through 1923 and the gun is produced and used to this day.
The Model 1873 had a steel frame that was much stronger than the brass framed Model 1866, allowing Winchester to develop a family of powerful new cartridges, with Colt usually producing Single Action Army revolvers in the same calibers shortly after they were developed. These included the .32-20, .38-40 and .44-40 cartridges.
This Model 1873 Rifle was made in 1890 and has a 24” octagon barrel chambered for 32-20. It appears to have had a long and useful life with honest wear and only a little bit of heavy cleaning and man-handling. This would make a great addition to a Winchester or early cartridge rifle collection, and will display well with its “been there, done that” appearance.
Please see our photos and good luck!

Winchester 1873 3rd Model 24" Octagonal .32-20 Lever Action Rifle, MFD 1890
Winchester 1873 3rd Model 24″ Octagonal .32-20 Lever Action Rifle, MFD 1890