Thoughts on Winchester Model 12 value?


August 31, 2008, 10:24 PM
A friend of mine has one of these things he's thinking about selling at some point. I only saw it in passing so for the moment I don't have great information, but anything would help.

Winchester Model 12, he says low numbers, and he knew the original owner bought it early on. 12 guage full-choke. Bore is shiny other than some pits in the forcing cone. No blue left at all--this was a hard-working gun for years. Wood is rough but uncracked/broken. Lots of old varnish and an ancient rubber recoil pad that's turned into dust. Action seems to work fine.

Any ideas?

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Dave McCracken
September 1, 2008, 08:37 AM
Around here a 12 gauge 12 will start around $400.

September 1, 2008, 05:56 PM
Thanks. The owner doesn't have hopes that high, probably could get it for around $150 give or take. It hasn't been a pretty gun for quite a few decades.

September 1, 2008, 06:06 PM
That's an excellent price on a M12.....I'd snap it up if it is still capable of firing.

February 25, 2010, 06:21 PM
Sorry for dredging this up, funny how these things go. I saw the old guy again recently and he's going to give it to me in a couple months in exchange for some computer work I did. Lucky.

It's a 12ga 30" barrel, full choke, last patent date is 7-22-13. Serial is 55,xxx which seems to put it in the 1914 range if I looked it up correctly. I guess that's right when they came out with the 12. Not sure if it takes 2-1/2" or 2-3/4" shells. Heavily, heavily used but I tried it with a snap cap and the firing pin seems to hit on-center. Ejects, feeds, etc.

Anything I should look out for?

Red Label
February 25, 2010, 09:46 PM
Loose or peened bolt. Loose lockup between the barrel assembly and reciever. Other than those items if it functions you can always find new wood or parts!:D I've got a couple 12s and they are in similar condition to yours. Well used but not abused and both old. I don't hesitate to give them a workout. You should however find a good gunsmith to give it a look. You never know.

Ed Harris
February 26, 2010, 12:22 PM
I have an model 12 of similar, lightly older vintage 343XX. Mine is a solid-frame, non takedown, 26 inch full choke barrel. Interestingly the barrel is marked Model 97, but it is a hammerless model 12 receiver. As near as anyone can tell it was assembled from misc. parts after WWI. Previous owner carried it on the job to guard inmates on road gangs and they gave it to him when he retired from the state police many years ago. It throws deadly patterns, will hit quart oil cans at 50 yards with slugs just using the bead sight and it is my West Virginia turkey, squirrel, deer and farm defense gun. Wouldn't trade it for a whole pickup load of 870s. Won alot of hams and prize money at fire dept. turkey shoots with it.

February 26, 2010, 12:38 PM
Not sure if it takes 2-1/2" or 2-3/4" shells.If it's a 12 ga Model 12, it takes 2 3/4" shells.

Only the early 16 & 20 Ga Model 12's were ever chambered for the shorter shells.


February 26, 2010, 10:49 PM
Thanks for the info. The locking recess in the top of the receiver didn't look damaged. How wobbly are the bolts supposed to be in these things when locked forward with no shell?

Red Label
February 27, 2010, 09:35 PM
Locked tight, no movement or wobble at all. If there is any there's problems.

February 28, 2010, 05:35 PM
Yeah, it didn't seem right. When the action's closed the bolt has some slop in it. That's what, typically the studs that run at the sides of the bolt?

Red Label
February 28, 2010, 05:45 PM
I'm not sure I could tell you without looking at it. Better take it to someone who is better than me. $150 wouldn't be bad for a parts gun if you had another one.

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