Original U.S. Winchester Model 1873 .44-40 Rifle with 21 inch Octagonal Barrel - Made in 1886
Original Item: Only One Available. "The Gun that Won the West!" This very fine rifle is in .44-40 caliber (faintly marked .44 W.C.F. above the chamber) with a special order 21" octagonal barrel. Features the classic front sight and a "semi-buckhorn" rear sight, and has a full length magazine tube. The serial number is 204097B denoting the year of manufacture as 1887. The engraving on top of the barrel is partly clear:
WINCHESTER'S-REPEATING-ARMS. NEW HAVEN, CONN. U.S.A.
- KING'S-IMPROVEMENT-PATENTED-MARCH 29.1866. OCTOBER 16.1860 -
Stocks are in very good condition, with a great patina and the reddish-brown color of aged oiled walnut. There are just a few scratches and dents on the wood, but nothing major. Offered with a crisp tight action in fully functional condition with the original tight fitting dust cover. Metal work is good, with some original finish, and a nice gray patina over most areas. Barrel markings are partly legible, bore is definitely quite worn, and is mostly dark, however it still has visible lands and grooves.
This is a great example of a factory customized Winchester 1873 repeating rifle, with a shorter 21 inch barrel. These are becoming increasingly hard to find on the market in nice condition. Fully cleaned and ready for display!
The Model 1873 was one of the most successful Winchester rifles of its day, gaining the reputation as "The Gun that Won the West". Still an icon almost a century and a half later, it was manufactured between 1873 and 1919. Originally chambered for the .44-40 cartridge, it was later produced in .38-40 and .32-20, all of which were also popular handgun cartridges of the day, allowing users to conveniently carry just one type of ammunition. The Model 1873 was produced in three variations: a 24" barrel rifle, 20" barrel carbine, and a musket. The easy to transport and handle carbine was the most popular, while the musket accounted for less than 5-10 percent of total production.
Due to feeding problems, the original Model 1873 was never offered in the military standard .45 Colt cartridge, although a number of modern reproductions are chambered for the round. The popularity of the original Model 1873 led Colt to manufacture .44-40 a version of the Single Action Army revolver called the "Frontier Model".
To both celebrate and enhance the Model 1873's prestige, Winchester established a coveted One of One Thousand grade in 1875. Barrels producing unusually small groupings during test-firing were fitted to rifles with set triggers and a special finish. Marked One of One Thousand, they sold for a then princely $100. A popular 1950 Western starring Jimmy Stewart, Winchester '73, was based on the coveted gun. Promotions included a search for One of One Thousand rifles by Universal Studios, with advertisements in sporting magazines and posters in sporting goods stores.
A second grade of Model 1873 barrels producing above average accuracy were fitted to rifles marked One of One Hundred, and sold for $20 over list. Approximately 136 One of One Thousand Model 1873s were sold, and only eight One of One Hundreds. In all, over 720,000 Model 1873s were produced.
The .38-40 Winchester round is actually a .40 caliber cartridge shooting .401 caliber bullets. The cartridge was introduced by Winchester in 1874 and is derived from their .44-40 Winchester. This cartridge was introduced for rifles, but in its reintroduction for Cowboy Action Shooting it has seen some popularity as a pistol cartridge. It is not particularly well suited to hunting larger game, but it was popular when it was introduced, along with the previous .44-40 Winchester, for deer hunting. It can be used successfully on smaller game animals, and for self-defense.
Year of Manufacture: 1886
Caliber: .44-40 Winchester
Cartridge Type: Centerfire Cartridge
Barrel Length: 21 Inches
Overall Length: 40 Inches
Action type: Lever Action Repeater
Feed System: 12-round tube magazine
Note: This gun is NOT considered obsolete calibre, so we are no able to ship to the United Kingdom. Please note that for international shipping, these MUST be shipped using UPS WW Services.
This product is not available for shipping in US state(s)
This product is available for international shipping.
Note: This gun is NOT considered obsolete calibre, so we are no able to ship these to the United Kingdom.
IMA considers all of our antique guns as non-firing, inoperable and/or inert. Title 18, U.S. Code, Section 921(a)(16) defines antique firearms as all guns made prior to 1899. This law exempts antique firearms from any form of gun control or special engineering because they are not legally considered firearms. No FFL, C&R or any license is required to possess, transport, sell or trade Antique guns. All rifles and muskets sold by IMA that were manufactured prior to 1899 are considered Antiques by the US BATF (United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms). Therefore, all of IMA's Antique guns may be shipped to all US States and most nations around the world.
These antique guns are not sold in "live" condition. They are sold as collector's items or as "wall hangers". Any attempt at restoring an antique gun to be operational is strongly discouraged and is done so at the risk of the customer. By purchasing an antique gun from IMA you thereby release IMA, its employees and corporate officers from any and all liability associated with use of our Antique guns.
Pre-1899 Manufacture, no licenses required, allowed to ship to almost any deliverable address across the globe. Please note that for international shipping, these MUST be shipped using UPS WW Services.
- Not eligible for payment with Paypal or Amazon