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Winchester 22 lever action 1880's prototypes

bundybundy Member Posts: 203 ✭✭✭
edited June 2018 in Ask the Experts
I have some questions about the two Winchester 22 rimfire lever action 1880's prototypes rifles at the Buffalo Bill museum in Cody.
I saw these two rifles in the display case at the Cody museum some years back and have been very curious about them ever since. Does anyone know if there were any articles or research by anyone on these? I found them to be aesthetically cleaner than the 1873's lines and have wondered were they functional and why didn't Winchester put them into production. I am including links for the museum that have pictures showing them and hopefully they will take you there.

https://collections.centerofthewest.org/view/firearm_rifle_lever_action_winchester_repeating_arms_co_new_haven_ct_mason2?Descriptions[0]=receiver&offset=7&maxOffset=12


https://collections.centerofthewest.org/view/firearm_rifle_lever_action_winchester_repeating_arms_co_new_haven_ct_mason?Makers[0]=winchester_repeating_arms_co_new_haven_ct3&Makers[1]=winchester_repeating_arms_co_new_haven_ct3&partial=0&bbm=0&wg=1&cfm=1&pim=0&dmnh=0&ondisplay=1&offset=28&maxOffset=417

Comments

  • Bert H.Bert H. Member Posts: 11,280 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Those were the early prototype designs made by John M. Browning for a repeating .22 caliber rifle. Winchester ultimately decided that his design and patent for what became the Model 1890 would be more profitable, and in retrospect, I believe they were correct.
  • bundybundy Member Posts: 203 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Thank you Bert for answering my questions about these rifles. Since Winchester had made their name manufacturing lever actions I would have thought they would have gone with these as opposed to a pump action but it always should come down to "Is there a market for these and can we sell them for a profit".
  • kannoneerkannoneer Member Posts: 3,005 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Winchester made the 1873 in .22 cal; obviously it was not a huge seller for them.
  • Bert H.Bert H. Member Posts: 11,280 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by kannoneer
    Winchester made the 1873 in .22 cal; obviously it was not a huge seller for them.


    Nearly 20,000 were made, many of them after John Browning's slide-action rifle patent (the Model 1890), and the Single Shot (Model 1885) rifle were put into production. In retrospect, I would say that it sold quite well in spite of it being the higher costing rifle of the three.
  • bundybundy Member Posts: 203 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    What I liked about the two prototypes is their clean lines and that they were downsized to match the 22 RF cartridge. Since Winchester had started their business making lever actions I would have thought that they would have made a smaller sized 22 RF rifle like Marlin eventually did and that would have also made it more attractive for kids or women.
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