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Winchester WP and P marked barrels

RustyjackRustyjack Member Posts: 55 ✭✭
edited May 2016 in Ask the Experts
I know I've seen it discussed,but has there ever been a definitive answer or generally accepted opinion on why some Winchester barrels
are marked with both the superimposed WP and the oval P ?

[img][/img]DSCF0349_zpsbzcqc4qq.jpg

Comments

  • MG1890MG1890 Member Posts: 4,649
    edited November -1
    I consider all P barrels as mail order.
  • HangfireHangfire Member Posts: 3,010 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    It has always been my understanding that it showed the barrel was a replacement installed by Winchester.. If a gun was sent to Winchester for a new barrel, one was pulled from their parts inventory- already stamped Oval P- then Oval WP stamped after installed,and tested..
  • tsr1965tsr1965 Member Posts: 8,682 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    This topic has just been discussed, and answered here on these boards in the last week, by one of the foremost Winchester experts in existence.

    http://forums.GunBroker.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=675122

    search is you friend...
  • Bert H.Bert H. Member Posts: 11,280 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by Hangfire
    It has always been my understanding that it showed the barrel was a replacement installed by Winchester.. If a gun was sent to Winchester for a new barrel, one was pulled from their parts inventory- already stamped Oval P- then Oval WP stamped after installed,and tested..


    Bob,

    I disagree. I have seen way too many Winchesters that were returned to the factory for a new barrel (documented), and the only proof mark on them is the standard superposed "WP".

    For a little history, the "P" proof mark was instituted on May 31, 1913 specifically for "mail order" parts use. When a gun was returned to Winchester, they did not pull a barrel out of the mail order department parts supply to rebarrel it. Instead, they pulled a brand new production barrel from the regular parts supply, fitted it to the gun, and then proofed it. An acquaintance of mine found written Winchester correspondence about this very topic in the archive at the Buffalo Bill Historical Center, in the McCracken Research library vaults. I have an electronic copy of it.
  • HangfireHangfire Member Posts: 3,010 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Bert, I of course defer to your research.. Please explain those that have both stamps..I've seen many over the years.. I've never heard that Winchester shipped out barrels with their definitive Oval WP proof on mailorder Oval P stamped barrels.. I thought the Oval WP was only stamped on factory installed barrels, after testing the assembled rifle.. I agree a new barrel could be installed, IF it was still in production, or they had one in their parts department.. If it was out of stock,a discontinued chambering, or simply more convenient , a mailorder barrel would be used.. I thought this was common.. Thanks for the dates.. I seem to remember reading before the mailorder Oval P stamp, they stamped OF for outside fitted..
  • Bert H.Bert H. Member Posts: 11,280 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Bob,

    At some point in time during the late 1930s or early 1940s, the mail order barrels were intentionally marked with both proof stamps. I believe that it had something to do with the "perceived" quality of Winchester parts. While there may have been a very small number of factory rebarrel jobs where Winchester installed a replacement barrel using a mail order part with both proof marks on it, it was not standard practice.

    Prior to May of 1913, mail order barrels were marked "OF" on the underside of the barrel. I have seen at least a dozen or more of them on Model 1885 rifles in the past 35+ years.
  • HangfireHangfire Member Posts: 3,010 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Hmmm, interesting... Thanks, Bert...
  • CJS10CJS10 Member Posts: 66 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Quote: "While there may have been a very small number of factory rebarrel jobs where Winchester installed a replacement barrel using a mail order part with both proof marks on it, it was not standard practice."

    The Paramount Movie Contract Model 92 SRC Octagon barreled carbines as researched by Leroy Mertz are a documented example of this double proofing on the barrel. I own one of these that was purchased in 1939 in NYC and in the family since then. Several others have been sold at auction. All have those same proofs. So it did happen for sure.
  • asopasop Member Posts: 8,153 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Any idea of how much a double stamped barrel, both P and WP, would effect the value compared to an original WP stamped barreled firearm?
  • Bert H.Bert H. Member Posts: 11,280 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by asop
    Any idea of how much a double stamped barrel, both P and WP, would effect the value compared to an original WP stamped barreled firearm?


    Minimum of 50% reduction, and for many collectors, it is a deal killer.
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