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Winchester 1873 Rifle in 44 WCF

Here's the one 1873 that Winchester enthusiasts really want these days for their collections we call a 44 OBFMCB.  Basically, Its a standard sporting rifle with 24" octagon barrel, full magazine, crescent buttplate, and last but not least, its chambered in the popular 44-40 caliber.  This is a good solid example of an 1880's vintage rifle.  Serial number  is in the 230,000 serial range which dates it to the year 1887.

Overall, this one is in NRA Antique Fine Condition. 40% receiver blue that is a bit splotchy but then again, this is well above average for a 73  built in the 1880's when most these guns were still seeing heavy usage on the frontier. The blue is strong mainly behind the sideplates and in the protected areas, and thins out in the more exposed areas.  Nice edges throughout with some light roughness on the front of the receiver and forend cap from poor storage. There are still traces of good fire blue on the loading port and some decent case colors remaining on the hammer but only traces on the lever.  The barrel and tube are mostly a gray patina that is turning brown with 20% original blue in the protected areas mainly between the barrel and mag tube and along the forend lines.  Nice markings throughout with the 44 CAL marking on the brass loading block a tad worn from carry wear...but perfectly good and legible.  Good screws throughout.  Rear sight is original, a standard semi-buckhorn while the front sight is the popular semi-oval shaped Lyman with Ivory bead which collectors call the "Lyman Hunting Front Sight"...a very popular sight as you find these on more than a few vintage 19th and early 20th century Winchesters. 

The wood is in Very Good Plus condition with a few dings and scratches, but considerably better than average.  The wood is completely untouched and original with no chips, cracks, or repairs. There is still  a fair bit of original varnish present on the stock and the front of the forend with most of the varnish gone from the forend where it was s varnish was never very durable and considerably thinner than Marlin finish.  There is some slight roughness on the crests of the buttplate from poor storage.  The trapdoor is present with original brass sliding door for the cleaning rods which are now long gone. Wood to metal fit is perfect with the wood still swelling slightly proud over all the metal edges...just like it did when it left the factory in 1887.   Nice action and bore is very good with strong rifling.  All in all, this is just a good solid example of the model 1873 in a very desirable configuration with a good balance of wear and original condition.




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