Full Auto Winchester Model 1907


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HC
July 18, 2007, 03:23 PM
France acquired 2,500 selective-fire rifles in 1917 that were built on the Winchester Model 1907. Would anyone know something about these, such as rate of fire, extended magazines, etc?

Similarly, the Dillinger-Nelson gang had converted Winchester rifles. Would that have been an easy conversion?

Many thanks!

Cheers

HANS

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Nameless_Hobo
July 18, 2007, 06:45 PM
I don't mean to make any undue accusations, but if you're thinking about converting a gun to automatic, don't.

The Deer Hunter
July 18, 2007, 07:06 PM
I'm sure the gang members of the time found it quite easy, assuming they had some knowledge about how guns work.

trueblue1776
July 18, 2007, 08:12 PM
I don't mean to make any undue accusations, but if you're thinking about converting a gun to automatic, don't.

Ha ha ha, you've never seen an M1907, have you? If a 1907 is your weapon of choice for illegal activities you probably aren't a danger to anyone. :D

I believe he is asking about the historical nature of these modifications.

Cosmoline
July 18, 2007, 08:19 PM
I've never heard that before, but I'd be very interested to hear about it. Those early semis were often called "automatics," but I didn't know anyone actually made them full auto.

Here's a rare WWI 351 SL

http://imageevent.com/willyp/firearmsalbums/usww1aefused1907winchester351sl

This is the unofficial ancestor of the M1 carbine, but I see nothing about it being selective fire.

Trebor
July 19, 2007, 04:47 AM
As far as I know, the French purchase involved Semi-auto 1907 rifles. I've never seen a reference that said those rifles were full auto capable.

HC
July 20, 2007, 06:00 AM
"A French solution to the problem was the puchase of 2,500 Winchester Model 1907 semiautomatic rifles. Before accepting their delivery, the French had Winchester to convert them to full-auto."

Captain Monty Mendenhall, "The MP18,I: Imperial Germany's First Subgun", SMALL ARMS REVIEW, p. 24, January 2004.

They had started buying normal semis in 1915, and got at least a couple thousand, for use by aircraft observers. Those 2,500 selective-fire guns were acquired in 1917, and for use by trench raiders.

It seems that the conversion was a fairly easy one.

Cheers

HANS

T191032
December 10, 2008, 03:04 PM
""A French solution to the problem was the puchase of 2,500 Winchester Model 1907 semiautomatic rifles. Before accepting their delivery, the French had Winchester to convert them to full-auto."

Captain Monty Mendenhall, "The MP18,I: Imperial Germany's First Subgun", SMALL ARMS REVIEW, p. 24, January 2004.

They had started buying normal semis in 1915, and got at least a couple thousand, for use by aircraft observers. Those 2,500 selective-fire guns were acquired in 1917, and for use by trench raiders.

It seems that the conversion was a fairly easy one."



The smallish 10-shot clip magazine would have been a detriment for full-auto fire, certainly the 5-shot one would be!

351 WINCHESTER
December 10, 2008, 08:39 PM
The book on "The Forgotten Winchesters" makes no mention to any being converted to full auto, although I agree it is possible. The Brits. loved em as did the Russians and the French. The Russians were more partial to the .401. The self loading winchesters have an extremely "fast" trigger and one can empty a 10 round mag. quicker than any semi auto I've ever fired.

351 WINCHESTER
December 10, 2008, 09:19 PM
As far as I know there was only one full auto chambered for the .351 ctg. and it was made by Thompson Arms as a more powerful alternative to the .45acp ctg. The War Dept. rejected it due to complications of ammo supply.

Onmilo
December 11, 2008, 09:14 AM
This is a facinating thread.
I am no expert on the semi-auto Winchester rifles but have handled and worked on a few.

These rifles all use a heavy bolt blow back action and have a tendency to crack the stocks and forends as semi-auto rifles.
I can imagine that if these rifles were so converted to full-auto that they didn't last very long in a combat environment and this would account for why they are so rare and rarely mentioned.

It was an idea best forgotten.

ClayinAR
December 11, 2008, 09:18 AM
My dad bought a 351 new in the early fifty's. There was a problem with it; it would empty itself with one trigger pull. You couldn't stop it. He took it to several gunsmiths before it was fixed. I remember the gunsmith told dad, 'You know the factory had that problem with them, too.' It was a new gun at the time.
But anyway he fixed it and it never did it again.
My dad's had 2 5 shot mags and one eight. Never saw a 10 shot that I read about on the various forums.
Impossible to hold with that 8 round mag when it ran away!

351 WINCHESTER
December 11, 2008, 04:57 PM
It's rare to find one that doesn't have a cracked forearm or butstock. They recoil like no other gun I've ever shot. It's hard to describe, but I'll give it a try. It's like a double "kershunk". Anyway these guns are relaible as guns get, they are heavy as they are built like Russian tanks. Their magazines are truly a work of art (by far the best constructed magazine I've ever seen). The follower even has a roller bearing on the front. The front sights were usually too low for reasons unbeknown to me. We tested one of mine in ballistic gel. Go to www.brassfetcher.com to see. Winchester never made an 8 round mag. Only 5 & 10. There were copies made in Mexico, but I've never seen one. Sadly, no one loads the ammo anymore except for speciality ammo makers. I'm going to have some .357 mag. brass turned down and beveled and get me some more bullets so I can crank them up. I saw a video of Herb Parsons years ago (he was Winchester's trick shooter). He was truly amazing. He could do things with a rifle that most folks would think impossible with a shotgun.

When I was a kid I hunted with a gunsmith that had one and a revenewer that had one also. He killed a lot of deer with his .351 and his wife would curse the gun "that damm .351" as it ruined so much meat.

CoRoMo
December 11, 2008, 05:09 PM
I don't mean to make any undue accusations, but...

+1 trueblue1776

This is, after all, an international forum.

ClayinAR
December 11, 2008, 05:29 PM
I dug out my 351 mags. You are correct; it does hold 10. I sure remembered 8 (or disremembered!). Prolly been 45 or 50 years since I loaded it.

I bought an aftermarket 10 round mag at a gunshow in Novermber. Not the same quality, no ball bearing, etc. Guy was asking $35, got it for $25.
Forearm and buttstock both in good shape on mine. DAD had cut the stock off about 2". I traded for one about 25 years ago that had good wood (rest wasn't so good). Swapped buttstocks and traded off the donor gun.
CC

351 WINCHESTER
December 11, 2008, 08:16 PM
You probably remembered 8 rounds cause the last 2 are heck to load due to the extremely strong mag. spring.

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