Win 94 Rifle Value: 1898, 30-30


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david58
March 20, 2011, 05:51 PM
I have the opportunity to purchase a Model 94 in 30-30, made in 1898. Finish is no longer blue, but the old-gun brown patina. Crescent butt plate. Full rifle length, octagon bbl, full length magazine tube. Wood is very good for a 100+ year old rifle. I presume, repeat, presume the bore is good. I have to verify that, but I haven't been a serious shopper till just now. Asking price by the dealer is $700.00.

Based on my photo-less description, does this seem like a good deal for this rifle? I am buying it to shoot, and to hunt with, not to hang on the wall or to hide it in my safe. I love the romance of the old guns (I have been a muzzleloader shooter and reenactor for a long time), but know very little about the value of cartridge guns.

Thank you for your opinions - they are very welcome! I get educated on this site every time I log in...

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Peter M. Eick
March 20, 2011, 05:53 PM
700 for an 1898 30/30 94? I would probably do it just for the fun of it. Unless the gun is absolutely trashed out why not?

If nothing else it would make a great wall hanger.

content
March 20, 2011, 07:51 PM
Hello friends and neighbors // I'd like to have one that old, a real classic.

Unfortunately, I would not shoot modern ammo in a firearm that predates heattreating and other techniques. If you reload this may not be a problem.

I'm still trying to find out if it is safe to shoot modern ammo with my 1925 Winchester model 1894 in 32ws.

As to cost, it will probably sell to the right person, for $700. Any pre 64 in this area is usually around $500.00 in better than average condition.

If you find current info on ammo safety and older 1894s, please PM me.

david58
March 20, 2011, 08:09 PM
Predates heat treating?

Peter M. Eick
March 20, 2011, 09:05 PM
The barrel may be a bit soft by modern standards. Not a big concern but you could wear it out quicker with jacketed bullets. Stick to lead and no big deal.

Basically just don't try to turn it into a magnum. Reload for it with mild loads (any modern manual will give you mild stuff) and move on. Enjoy it and shoot it. My bet is you will be surprised at its accuracy.

david58
March 20, 2011, 09:27 PM
So, $700 is a reasonable/high/low/steal price?

gene61
March 20, 2011, 09:29 PM
Winchester 1894 in cal. 25-35, 30 and 32 WCF all have nickle steel barrels that were developed to handle smokeless powder. 1898 makes that gun an antique which carries a premium to collectors.

Malamute
March 20, 2011, 09:51 PM
All of the Winchester 94's are safe to shoot with factory ammo. I don't know where the idea they weren't heat treated came from, it's the first time I've ever heard it, but it's incorrect.

Almost all the model 1894's made for smokeless catridges were made with nickel steel barrels, which is pretty tough steel. The toughness of the steel, and machining it, was the reason Madis mentioned that the smokeless calibers (30-30 and 25-35) weren't made the first year the 1894 was out. A few were made in the 45,000-75,000 serial range with barrels marked with "EXTRA STEEL BARREL ESPECIALLY FOR SMOKELES POWDER", which had a lower nickel content and was easier to machine, tho it proved to be too soft and eroded faster than the regular nickel steel barrels. Not all the guns made in that serial range has those barrels, only the ones so marked. Later guns were barreled with "Winchester Proof Steel" barrels which were used throughout production after that so far as I know.

If your 32 spl is in decent condition, there isn't any reason not to shoot factory loads in it.

content
March 21, 2011, 06:45 AM
Thanks for the info Malamute, better safe than sorry.

The GS where I purchased the 32ws was not certain if Nickled Steel would handle modern ammo.
138875 This may be the reason it was only $200.00 when I found it last year, they said it should have been tagged at $500 but let me have it. Good Guys!

I was under the impression heat treating / hardenng of gun parts did not start until the mid 1920s. Maybe this just applies to 1911 slides and rifle barrels were already made strong enough for modern loads before the 1920s.

I'm glad as I already have bought three boxes of new ammo, just waiting to be certain not to buldge the barrel on an 85year old rifle.

Much appreciated and thanks also to the OP, hope I did not mess you up info wise.

david58
March 21, 2011, 10:40 AM
No prob, Content. Sorry that my response was less than diplomatic, I shoulda thought before I posted as I knew better.:o

Been working with Muzzleloaders for a long time, have built them and hang out with guys that do. Heat treatment has been around for a long time - the issue is more an alloy thing than the heat treatment. I'm not too worried about shooting the rifle - I don't have any desire to own one I cannot shoot, and plan to hunt with this gun if I purchase it. Again, I'm no collector, and am trying to find out if this is a fair price or on one extreme or another, as I ain't wealthy enough to just go buy it.

As a general rule, modern factory ammo is built to the specs of the guns it was made for. 30-30 is an example - still goes at the same pressure as the original. 45-70 is another - modern steels and construction allow much, much hotter loads than the original Federal (as in govt) Cartridge, but the stuff you buy off the shelf is going to be safe to shoot in your Trapdoor Springfield (although it is sacreligious to put smokeless in one of those guns born to shoot lead pushed by charcoal).

Dithering pretty hard on this rifle - my wife wants me to purchase a bicycle (yes, a bicycle) with my money, I really would like to have an old shooter. We'll see, but I first gotta find out what it's worth.

Malamute
March 21, 2011, 12:03 PM
I think the price is reasonable. I've seen parts guns that went in that range, tho I thought them a bit high for a parts gun.

So long as it's original, decent condition (I don't mean great condition, just not thrashed) it's worth $700. If the condition was higher, the price would be also. $1200 1894 rifles arent unusual, even with some serious finish wear. For a shooter example of an early 1894, I think it's fair. Consider what most new guns are costing now. I still think of brand new Smith&Wessons as being $500 guns. I'm shocked when I see them in the case at the gunshop for $700-$800.

Check the bore out. So long as the rifling isnt badly worn at the muzzle, and it isnt pitted badly, it should shoot well. I have a 1927 carbine that had a fairly badly pitted barrel, I cleaned it well, had about 1/16" cut off the muzzle and recrowned, and it's about a 2 1/2" grouper. Fine for shooting and hunting. Good enough to make a head shot on a deer @ 75 yards for a finishing shot.

content
March 21, 2011, 12:36 PM
Looks like I have something new to shoot this weekend. :D
Thanks guys.

Have either of you seen a recoil pad like mine.
It was extremely well fittted with a Pat. Pending ,Ranger Pad and looks factory.
---------
I can't stop messing up... I've used modern "Lead "ammo in my 1884 Springfield Trapdoor, it says on the box for all 45/70s.
No one told me it was sacreligious but I did have a bad feeling till I fired off a round.;)

david58
March 21, 2011, 03:45 PM
Looks like I have something new to shoot this weekend. :D
Thanks guys.

Have either of you seen a recoil pad like mine.
It was extremely well fittted with a Pat. Pending ,Ranger Pad and looks factory.
---------
I can't stop messing up... I've used modern "Lead "ammo in my 1884 Springfield Trapdoor, it says on the box for all 45/70s.
No one told me it was sacreligious but I did have a bad feeling till I fired off a round.;)
Well, to avoid sacrilege you have to load your own cartridges, and get over the shudder when you use the compression die on the powder. That "crinkle crinkle" of the powder being pressed into a pellet is kinda unnerving at first.....

content
March 21, 2011, 06:52 PM
Made me laugh/ I'll bet the first few crinkles do sound like ignition.

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