January 21, 2008, 04:13 PM
A friend was just given a Winchester 71 in .348 Win.
He has asked me to help him break it down for a good cleaning, and reload for it.
Im not really a lever guy, does anybody have info on this rifle/load.
January 21, 2008, 04:35 PM
The Model 71 is the only rifle chambered for the .348. They still make bullets for it in 220 and 250 grain flat point. Midway does not list any .348 brass but I'm sure you can find some out there.
I shot one a number of years back. Great lever action. A classic.
Sorry I can't help with how to break it down, but I'm sure someone out there can help with that.
47 grains of IMR 4895 with the 220 grain jacketed bullet is the starting load in the Lyman 45th edition manual.
January 21, 2008, 04:46 PM
The Model 71 Winchester (1936 to 1955) is a super great rifle. I have owned a couple. It is basically an updated Model 86 (Winchester 1886 designed by John M. Browning).
So any 1886 take-down guide will work just fine.
When I was Law Dawging down in South-East Alaska (our pan handle) I ran into more than a few of those rifles being used by the old guides in the areas heavily populated by Brown Bears. The 348 Winchester cartridge is a good brush gun and 200 yards shots are no problem as well. Although they do tend to have a bit of a kick to them.
While a overkill for the small South East Alaskan Sitka Black Tail Deer. I can tell you that a running deer at 150 yards being hit broadside with this round dropped out of mid-jump and the sound that came back sounded like slapping a fat lady in the butt with a wet canoe paddle. The round is more suited to moose, elk and bear.
Around 1987 or 88, Browning released a new version of the Model 71 that was made in Japan. They may have also been made with the Winchester name on them again after the merge of Browning / Winchester. The Japanese made gun parts usually do not fit with the old original Winchester rifles.
The 348 cartridge has a very large case head and rim. I think it was based upon the 50-110 Winchester express cartridge brass. The largest ever put into a model 86 size frame.
The factory ammo that I have had was 200 grain bullets and some 250 grain bullets. The 200 grain flat nose has a muzzle velocity of around 2,550 fps and the 250s were around 2,200 or 2,300.
The ammo is still around in limited production.
Buffalo Bore makes loaded HOT ammo for this rifle.
The guy in Juneau Alaska, (Kodiak Bullets or Alaskan bullet company) sells or used to sell a good 250 grain bullet but will need to hand load.
Speer used to make a 220 grain but I don't know if they still do.
I found that IMR 4350 was the best powder for 200 and 220 grain handloads. IMR 4064 and 4895 also work pretty good.
The real Winchesters had a 1 in 12 twist.
Kachemak Bay Alaska