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Winchestern Model 37

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by cdbeaver, Apr 21, 2003.

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  1. cdbeaver

    cdbeaver Member

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    About 40 or 50 years ago I bought my mother a Winchester Model 37 .410 single shot break-open so she could protect her fresh washing on the clothesline from indiscreet starlings and blackbirds.

    My son acquired the shotgun somehow. The other day he handed it back to me. Realizing that he regards guns as something to shoot but not clean, I took to that task. But first I wanted to enter the necessary information in my gun log. Couldn't find a serial number anywhere on the gun which is still in very good condition except for a tiny bit of rust here and there. Bluing is nearly 100 per cent intact. It's chambered for three-inch shells.

    I had no trouble removing the forearm and buttstock, but my ignorance caught up with me when I attempted to remove the barrel from the receiver. Any one out there who can tell me the proper procedure for field stripping a Winchester Model 37? I sure would appreciate it.
     
  2. Kernel

    Kernel Member

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    I've been looking at Winchester 37 shotguns because I've got two young sons who are coming of age and I want to get them each a scattergun that's well made, affordable, and has some historical cache. I saw a very nice youth .410 at a gun show this weekend. The gun was about 90% and the guy still had the box. Private sale asking $180, but seemed willing to dicker. If it had been a 20ga I would have snapped it up. The Win 37 receiver says "Made in Canada", which is a little trivia I didn't know before.

    Don't know of any online disassembly instructions, or exploded diagrams, for the Win 37. For $1.50 you can download a diagram and parts list from Numrich Gun Parts Corp. Below are some comments from OldGuns.net that explain the lack of s/n.

    ========================================

    Question: What can you tell me about this shotgun ? Was inherited from my father. Thanks, John

    Answer: John, you could not find a serial number on your Model 37, because Winchester Model 37 shotguns were not numbered. The Winchester Model 37 was popular because it was well made and inexpensive. Over 1,015,000 Model 37's were manufactured from 1936 to 1963 and another 600,000+ were manufactured between 1968 and 1980 as the Model 370 and the Model 37A. In my opinion Models 370 and 37A were of poorer quality and workmanship than the original Model 37. The Model 37 was offered in 12, 16, 20, 28 and .410 Gauges and came only in full choke. Values for a Model 37 in 16 gauge would range from $75.00 to $150.00 depending upon condition... Marc
     
  3. cdbeaver

    cdbeaver Member

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    Good answer

    That was a very good response to my question about the SN, and I thank you for taking the time to answer. My M37 is clearly stamped on the barrel: "Made in the USA."
     
  4. Kernel

    Kernel Member

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    I wonder if the .410 I briefly looked at was really a 37A or 370 (Winchester also marketed a Model 840 that was of the same basic design). Based on the statements from OldGun.net there was break in production, five years between 1963 and 1968. More than enough time to move the production tooling up north. That might explain the "...poorer quality and workmanship" comment.

    I looked up the Model 37 in my 1940 Stoeger's Shooter's Bible. The copy says:

    ===========================

    Model 37 "Steelbilt" Single Shot Shotgun

    A SUPER-STRONG, SAFE, DEPENDABLE, HARD SHOOTING SINGLE-SHOT GUN AT EXCEPTIONALLY LOW PRICE.

    "Frame formed of genuine Winchester-selected steel. Action, top lever breakdown with semi-hammerless rebounding lock, safety cocking lever on tang. Positive automatic ejection. Barrel sturdy steel with extra large main lung and brazed fore-end lug. Full choke, design to give patterns of approximately 70%. Stock of genuine American Walnut, with pistol grip and composition butt plate..............."

    Price...........$8.98

    ===========================

    In my 1973 Shooter's Bible a Model 370 lists for $44.95. -- Kernel
     
  5. Mike Irwin

    Mike Irwin Member

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    "Made in Canada"???

    To the best of my knowledge, Winchester never made shotguns in Canada...

    That's interesting...
     
  6. Gordon

    Gordon Member

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    Watch out for Model 37As . Easy to spot a 'real' model 37: the real(good) model 37 has hammer below unlocking lever. These are real sweet guns for the kids ect. They are real well made and a mint one approaches $200 in value. The model 37a ect are worth $50 and routinely break the trigger return spring, the foreend plastic retainer breaks so fore end won't stay on , and the pot metal top lever snaps off. I think the 37A's WERE made in Canada and so marked.
     
  7. fallingblock

    fallingblock Member

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    Gordon is correct....

    The 370 was made in Canada, to a lower standard than the 37.
    Made by Cooey, IIRC.

    Dang Winchester (Olin) corporate decisions in the early '60's, anyway:mad:
     
  8. charlesr41

    charlesr41 Member

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    Winchester model 37

    I have a model 37 Steelbilt in my shop (1st design). It has the narrow cocking lever(hammer) and a strut for the trigger-locking block spring. Later model 37's had two separate springs for the trigger and locking block. Numrich has the parts I need listed but are sold out. Does anyone know of another source of supply for the 1st design cocking lever(hammer), trigger and the trigger spring strut?

    charlesr41@windstream.net
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2010
  9. Stainless0ne

    Stainless0ne Member

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    I have had several of the canadian made model 37's they are the cooey model 84 and not only as good as the 37, and the wood has some nice decorations but just about as valuable, and as hard to find. i have been looking for a model 84 in 16 gauge for quite some time. john
     
  10. RandKL

    RandKL member

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    Just reading back over that ancient thread, Stainless, I had to laugh, too. "Comedy of errors" doesn't come close to that!

    The Model 37 and the Model 37A are entirely different firearms. They are not eariler and later versions of the same gun. The Winchester 37A was also sold as the Win 370, the Cooey (Canada) 84 and Cooey 840, the Sears Single Shot, at least one (possibly two) Ranger models etc. You are right, they are every bit as good a gun as the 37, moreso in some ways.

    I've got several 37's....I have twice as many 37A's. Both are fine firearms. I prefer the 37A, though.

    Peace.

    rich
     
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