Winchester 94 Transition rifle

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David LaPell
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Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#1 Post by David LaPell » Mon Oct 22, 2018 9:18 pm

A couple of weeks ago I picked up a Winchester 94 in .30-30, known as a "transition" rifle. This gun was made in 1939, has the newer style of barrel but has the earlier receiver minus the saddle ring and earlier buttplate. It has an excellent bore and an action silky smooth. This gun came out of Alaska, wish I knew more of the story and where it was used.

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BlaineG
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#2 Post by BlaineG » Mon Oct 22, 2018 10:23 pm

Looks good for coming from a hostile climate... :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#3 Post by Nath » Tue Oct 23, 2018 12:02 am

How far was the target please?

Thanks.

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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#4 Post by claybob86 » Tue Oct 23, 2018 12:07 am

Welcome aboard, David! Good lookin' rifle! :mrgreen:
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#5 Post by gamekeeper » Tue Oct 23, 2018 4:36 am

That was a great find, congratulations and welcome to the fire.... :)
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#6 Post by Pete44ru » Tue Oct 23, 2018 5:08 am

.

Nice rifle - Welcome to the board !

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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#7 Post by Nath » Tue Oct 23, 2018 7:01 am

Sorry David. Welcome yes.

N :)
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#8 Post by Tycer » Tue Oct 23, 2018 7:04 am

Nath wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 12:02 am
How far was the target please?

Thanks.

N.
25 yards
.
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#9 Post by Nath » Tue Oct 23, 2018 7:07 am

Tycer wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 7:04 am
Nath wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 12:02 am
How far was the target please?

Thanks.

N.
25 yards
Doh!
Yeah see it now :roll:
Thanks Tycer.

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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#10 Post by OldWin » Tue Oct 23, 2018 7:33 am

Welcome to the fire. You've found a great place.
Nice carbine!
In my humble opinion, Winchesters quality peaked between the wars. I'm not talking about fit and finish, they had mastered that earlier. I'm considering things like metallurgy and forging quality, also. A lot was learned during WW1 about manufacturing. Between the wars, companies still cared about their name and reputation. This was carried on while a depression was going on.
After WW2, it was all about lowering production cost and maximizing profits. Nothing has changed.
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#11 Post by Griff » Tue Oct 23, 2018 11:44 pm

Image and Welcome to THE Forum.
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#12 Post by Sixgun » Thu Nov 01, 2018 11:35 pm

Just noticed something...that buttstock is not original to the gun....that's a saddle ring carbine buttstock....and it's made from gumwood.----6
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#13 Post by 65bee » Fri Nov 02, 2018 2:21 pm

Sixgun is absolutely right! That vintage '94 carbine had the model 55 type 'shotgun' buttstock and were walnut. Gumwood went out right around WW1. Rest of gun looks good, however.

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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#14 Post by FWiedner » Fri Nov 02, 2018 4:28 pm

David LaPell wrote:
Mon Oct 22, 2018 9:18 pm
This gun came out of Alaska, wish I knew more of the story and where it was used.
Make something up. Include multiple man-eating bears and a one-eyed indian guide who knows how to throw a knife. Burn some cryptic hieroglyph into the wood under the butt-plate. Show it to your buddies and tell them that you don't know what it means, then when you're drinking with those buddies, turn to the rifle every once in a while and say "I know..."

:lol:
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#15 Post by David LaPell » Tue Feb 12, 2019 6:56 am

Sixgun wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 11:35 pm
Just noticed something...that buttstock is not original to the gun....that's a saddle ring carbine buttstock....and it's made from gumwood.----6
Sorry to take so long to get back on to this post, BUT, this is not the only one of these I have seen, I found two more Winchester 94's in this serial number range, had this same buttstock and they look just like this, gumwood stock and all. From what I read, they were called the transition guns because Winchester was using up all the parts they had left on hand prior to 1940 when they used the newer flat buttstock. The tang on this gun even has two screws where you can mount a tang sight. Here is another gun that was for sale, and notice the buttstock. These guns all had the older style SRC carbine buttstock without the Saddle ring but the newer style barrel with sights.

https://www.gunsamerica.com/975152046/W ... -30wcf.htm

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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#16 Post by Rube Burrows » Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:59 am

Great looking rifle and sounds like it is a real shooter.

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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#17 Post by Sixgun » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:16 am

Ok David.......maybe so....for the most part src buttstocks were not being used after the late twenties. Anything is possible and I would have agreed if the wood to metal fit was closer.

There's several old sayings amongst collectors....it's easy to convince yourself but it's not easy to convince a future buyer. Either way, it does not hurt your rifle at all as even if it was changed, it was a contemporary change which is usually accepted.----6
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#18 Post by David LaPell » Wed Feb 13, 2019 6:34 am

Sixgun wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:16 am
Ok David.......maybe so....for the most part src buttstocks were not being used after the late twenties. Anything is possible and I would have agreed if the wood to metal fit was closer.

There's several old sayings amongst collectors....it's easy to convince yourself but it's not easy to convince a future buyer. Either way, it does not hurt your rifle at all as even if it was changed, it was a contemporary change which is usually accepted.----6
The person who I have been finally trying to get ahold of is Bert H. over at WinchesterCollector.org, he's apparently a Historian and Board member at the Winchester Arms Collector's Association. He has done research on these guns and posted this on their forum a while back.

"I have surveyed a total of (376) transitional Carbines thus far, and of that number, (42) of them were 32 Winchester Specials. Doing the math, that implies that just over 11% of the total production were made in 32 WS. My estimate of the total production for the transitional carbines is 20,850. Many of the serial numbers in the Transitional range were assigned to Model 64s. If you use my production estimate of 20,580 transitional carbines, then multiply it by 11%, the extrapolated production number for the 32 WS would be approximately 2,300. The number of them still in 85% condition is undoubtedly a lot smaller than that."

So apparently at least 376 guns like mine (or 375 plus mine if it was surveyed before I got it) exist.

He also added that

"The Model 94 "Transitional" Carbines were manufactured from approximately May 1932 through June 1937. The "transitional" had the new Proof Steel barrel, with the ramp style front sight and the 22-series rear sight, but it retained the older style butt stock and carbine butt plate. The rear sight dovetail slot remained close to the receiver frame ring. The serial number range is 1082900 - 1129750."

My gun falls into the number of 1108XX.
Again it seems as that there is a run of these guns out there, and they are their own subsection of Model 94's, I often wonder if the fact that it was during the Great Depression and maybe Winchester was trying to save money and use up as many older parts as they could. We will probably never know for sure.

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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#19 Post by Scruffy49 » Wed Feb 13, 2019 10:12 am

Still a nice looking 94.

I like the gumwood src buttstock. If folks would shoot them off the bicep (as designed/intended) instead of the shoulder, more would be around... That buttplate is a hold over from muzzle loader days. The pamphlet that came with our older production Great Plains .54 caplock specifically recommends bicep firing.

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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#20 Post by David LaPell » Wed Feb 13, 2019 10:38 am

Scruffy49 wrote:
Wed Feb 13, 2019 10:12 am
Still a nice looking 94.

I like the gumwood src buttstock. If folks would shoot them off the bicep (as designed/intended) instead of the shoulder, more would be around... That buttplate is a hold over from muzzle loader days. The pamphlet that came with our older production Great Plains .54 caplock specifically recommends bicep firing.
She's a good shooter, this is at 125 yards.

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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#21 Post by Sixgun » Wed Feb 13, 2019 1:11 pm

OK, your convincing me. :D although I have never heard of your research, it's more than probable....its likely.....one thing for sure......in the old days, especially during the depression, nothing got thrown out. You have to figure, there's piles of parts all over the place and there was a payroll to meet.....Joe, "says, "hey boss, I just found a pallet of SRC buttstocks". The boss tells him to make use of them. I have a low wall winder musket in .22 L.R. that did not leave the factory until 1927....it has a high number receiver that was a left over from the military contract....the bossman would say, "put a barrel and a stock on those receivers and make it in .22 Long rifle so it will sell.

Looks like you have an excellent shooter there. ---6
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#22 Post by OldWin » Wed Feb 13, 2019 2:34 pm

Interesting. Have have seen, and own a couple, post SRC examples with a carbine butt. I have never seen one late enough to have a ramp front sight with the carbine butt. Especially in gumwood. I had never heard this, but find it completely believable. As Six said, Winchester threw nothing out.
Looks like a shooter, for sure! I like the 32WS. I have several examples, in rifle and carbine. They all shoot well. My most accurate Winchester lever is a 32.
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#23 Post by QCI Winchesters » Fri Feb 15, 2019 7:54 pm

Also, remember that Winchester used the same butt with carbine buttplate on the 1892 carbine, 1895 carbine, and 1895 and 92 muskets. A possible source for carbine butts would me those left over from the end of 1895 carbine production, but all I have seen were walnut.
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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#24 Post by OldWin » Sat Feb 16, 2019 7:35 am

All of mine with gumwood are from around 1900 to 1910.
All prior to, and later, are walnut.
If I've learned anything, however, is that there is no absolutes.
"Oh Bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered another round.

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Re: Winchester 94 Transition rifle

#25 Post by QCI Winchesters » Sun Feb 17, 2019 5:43 pm

OldWin wrote:
Sat Feb 16, 2019 7:35 am
All of mine with gumwood are from around 1900 to 1910.
All prior to, and later, are walnut.
If I've learned anything, however, is that there is no absolutes.
I had one from 1904, and another from 1913, both were gumwood, and currently have one from 1910, walnut.
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