Early Winchester 1886 28″ Pistol Grip .40-82 WCF Lever Rifle, 1887 Antique

SOLD FOR: $6175

LSB#: 230914LM130

Make: Winchester

Model: 1886

Year of Manufacture: 1887

Caliber: .40-82 WCF

Action Type: Lever Action Rifle

Serial Number: 11908

Barrel Length: 28?, Octagonal

Sights: The front sight is a beaded blade dovetailed to the front of the barrel (the bead is missing). The rear sight is a “V”-notch semi-buckhorn elevator sight dovetailed to the rear of the barrel; the notch is fine-adjustable for elevation. The top tang is drilled, tapped and filled for a tang sight (none present).

Stock Configuration & Condition: The stocks are two-piece checkered select walnut with capped forend, pistol grip, straight comb and steel crescent buttplate. There is a triangular ebony inlay in the bottom of the grip. The stocks have scattered nicks, scuffs and scratches. There are a couple of more notable marks on the right of the grip at the bottom of the checkering, the bottom of the grip, and a couple of dings in the belly. The checkering is generally well defined, but does not look like factory Winchester checkering. There are no chips or cracks. The LOP measures 13″ from the front of the trigger to the back of the buttplate. The plate has gone to a light patina with scattered minor surface erosion. Overall, the stocks are in Very Good-Fine condition as refinished and/or replaced Antique.

Type of Finish: Blue & Case-Color

Finish Originality: Original

Bore Condition: The bore is gray with well defined rifling. There is scattered erosion and pitting in the bore. In this writer’s opinion, the bore rates about 6 out of 10.

Most antique firearms have bores that will show erosion. This is not only due to age but to the use of black powder. When fired, black powder reacts corrosively. NRA Antique Firearm Conditions Standards are quite lenient for bores. In some cases, the NRA standards disregarded the bore’s condition for collectors’ firearms.

Overall Condition: The rifle retains approximately 20% of its metal finish. Remaining finish is mostly in protected areas such as the bottom of the barrel, the top of the magazine tube, and around the edges of the forend. There is some other scattered remaining finish with most exposed surfaces gone to a fiarly uniform light patina. There are scattered nicks, scuffs and scratches. There is some odd finish wear on the magazine tube forward of the forend. There is some scattered light surface oxidation. The action shows operational wear. The screw heads range from sharp to tool marked with strong slots. The markings are clear. Overall, this rifle is in Fine condition Antique.

Mechanics: The action functions correctly and smoothly. The lever locks up solidly. 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 / Accessories: This rifle comes with a Cody Firearms Records Office records search which indicates that this rifle’s serial number was applied December 14, 1887, received in the warehouse December 20, 1887 as a rifle chambered for .40-82 with a checkered, pistol grip stock, and shipped December 21, 1887 on order number 24888.

Our Assessment: The 1886 is another of John Browning’s industry-changing designs. It is our favorite Winchester here, certainly the strongest built at the time and function leads to beauty. The 1886 was available in a variety of cartridges over its nearly 40 years of production and, while there were standard configurations, there were also special-order features which led to a wide number of variations available to the collector today.

This is a nice early example of an 1886 made in 1887. The rifle is chambered for .40-82 and the Winchester records indicate it shipped with a checkered pistol grip stock. The current checkering doesn’t appear to be from the Winchester factory, so it’s not clear if the wood has been refinished or replaced. The rifle otherwise shows honest wear consistent with its age, retaining strong mechanics and some original metal finish. It will make a nice addition to a Winchester collection. Please see our pictures and good luck!

Please forgive any typos, I was educated in California. -Bud

Early Winchester 1886 28" Pistol Grip .40-82 WCF Lever Rifle, 1887 Antique
Early Winchester 1886 28″ Pistol Grip .40-82 WCF Lever Rifle, 1887 Antique