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dodge69dodge69 Member Posts: 954 ✭✭
edited July 2018 in Ask the Experts
How would I go about finding a topic on a subject matter I know has to have been ask before but have no idea who was the author . For example, I want to know if it is safe to shoot modern ammo in a 1873
Winchester 22.


  • carbine100carbine100 Member Posts: 3,165 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Use the search feature up in the top right hand corner beside FAQ
  • charliemeyer007charliemeyer007 Member Posts: 7,346 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    So there is safe as in the gun likely will not blow up, and there is accurate.

    Because the 22 rimfire has been around a while what is modern. Black powder, smokeless, standard velocity, hi-speed, hyper velocity. Then there are the slower/quieter stuff like CB longs and other heavier bullet/less powder loading.

    Old iron/steel isn't all that consistent or wonderful. Add in the corrosive action of black powder and mercuric priming compounds its a small wonder any have good bores.

    It was maybe 50 years ago and some change, I got to see the remains of a 30-40 Krag that had be converted to 22 Hornet. IIRC it had done fine with factory ammo but failed in a few rounds of hotter handloads.
  • rufe-snowrufe-snow Member Posts: 18,649 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Winchester made less than 20,000, 73's, in 22 caliber. Original ones, are very pricy collectors items nowadays. Don't push your luck. If you have to shoot it, use the Aguila Colibri .22's. That won't screw it up. My 2 cents.
  • dodge69dodge69 Member Posts: 954 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Thing is I shoot all my guns. As some state the 73 22 is a really pricey wall hanger if all you want is a wall hanger. to some if a gun is rare it should not be shot anyway . I guess that is the difference between collectors. I had a number of Winchesters made at the "end" of Winchester but all I could do was look at them. To be honest with you the quality control of Winchester was poor to none at the end anyway. I just have trouble understanding any production gun that can not handle a 22 short.
  • yonsonyonson Member Posts: 756 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I find it difficult to imagine that the Win. 73, which was engineered to handle 44-40 cartridges, would be marginal for modern 22 short and 22 long ammo. Am I missing something here?
  • oldWinchesterfanoldWinchesterfan Member Posts: 1,048 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by yonson
    I find it difficult to imagine that the Win. 73, which was engineered to handle 44-40 cartridges, would be marginal for modern 22 short and 22 long ammo. Am I missing something here?

    And generally the barrel for the .22 has the same outside dimensions as the 44-40 but smaller bore. Barrel is not the issue. Check condition of the smaller bolt for the .22, lock up, head space, usual stuff. Often extractor is broken and needs to be replaced.

    All that said I've never had problems shooting '73s in .22 with modern ammo even stuffing a LR into the chamber for a short. Twist rate was wrong for the LR and bore and chamber looked like a sewer pipe so accuracy was terrible. I had that one relined and chambered for .22 LR since it already had a bad re-blue, and converted the block to cycle 22 LR. Still working on minor issue with the repro feed tube it came with. It's going to be a fun gun, not practical for anything but still fun. YMMV.

    Added: the one I converted I bought for $1600 out the door at Tulsa gun show a couple years ago specifically to convert to .22 LR. Reblue was terrible, some replacement parts, very bad bore, no collector value at all. I bought it just to see if I could make the .22 LR work and we're close. I'm having a problem with the spring in the repro mag tube, but will get it running.
  • dodge69dodge69 Member Posts: 954 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    I found a guy who has several 73 22's . All things being equal, same size barrel, the 22 would carry the most weight. One heavy little 22. But the inside parts are small and in a lot of cases cracked or broken, bolt , extractor, etc. he was showing me how many parts their is just to the feeding tube and the cost that can be involved with that alone. He has one of the first and a couple of near the last. The later ones have good bores first one a little "dark", a term I have found that covers a lot of ground.
    At any rate I have several other Winchesters that I feel I would rather have than a expensive wall hanger. I am 76 and have a hell of a bucket list so the 73 will have to wait.
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