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  1. #1
    Member Sigtrig's Avatar
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    Model 1897 Winchester shotgun; real or copy?

    Checking on a family members 1897 shotgun for authenticity. No bayonet lug, no heat shield; and has Win. Marks, Model and dates. Serial numbers (204258; possibly a ‘C’ prefix?) match on bottom of receiver and barrel, & would put it in the 30’s if real?. Small surface rust just inside chamber that oil and wool can get rid of and overall very nice bluing still. Winchester info with list of pat. dates on top of shotgun barrel ; and ‘12’ by base of barrel top. ‘Cyl’ on left side of barrel base. Left pump strut lists ,Winchester Model 1897’ Trouble listing pics. Thanks for the coming education!
    Last edited by Sigtrig; 08-25-2020 at 10:42 PM.

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    Really Senior Member Tom Doniphon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sigtrig View Post
    Checking on a family members 1897 shotgun for authenticity. No bayonet lug, no heat shield; and has Win. Marks, Model and dates. Serial numbers (204258; possibly a ‘C’ prefix?) match on bottom of receiver and barrel, & would put it in the 30’s if real?. Small surface rust just inside chamber that oil and wool can get rid of and overall very nice bluing still. Winchester info with list of pat. dates on top of shotgun barrel ; and ‘12’ by base of barrel top. ‘Cyl’ on left side of barrel base. Left pump strut lists ,Winchester Model 1897’ Trouble listing pics. Thanks for the coming education!
    Your family member’s Model 1897 shotgun with “C” serial number prefix was made in 1903. It should have a buttstock with a rounded pistol grip bottom, and the slide handle should be the type that has three visible screws.

    How long is the barrel?

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    Advisory Panel browningautorifle's Avatar
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    Yes we'd love to see it as well...if possible. If you're willing to email me pics I'll post them.
    Quote Originally Posted by Sigtrig View Post
    Trouble listing pics.
    PM sent...
    Regards, Jim

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    OK, here's the pics of his '97 shotgun...looks like it's been reblued and cut down. the rest, Tom will tell us I hope. Don't see any military marks though...
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    Regards, Jim

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    Thread Starter
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Doniphon View Post
    Your family member’s Model 1897 shotgun with “C” serial number prefix was made in 1903. It should have a buttstock with a rounded pistol grip bottom, and the slide handle should be the type that has three visible screws.

    How long is the barrel?
    I will get barrel measurement ASAP, prob tomorrow. It is definitely shorter than a normal 97 . Yes on the rounded pistol grip bottom; I noticed that detail as it looked aesthetically nice and a bit different.

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    Really Senior Member Tom Doniphon's Avatar
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    Yes it looks reblued. If the barrel was cut down it probably was originally a "Brush Gun". Model 1897 Brush Guns had cylinder bore barrels like riot guns.

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    Thread Starter
    Thanks! Were the Brush guns cut down at the factory?

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    Really Senior Member Tom Doniphon's Avatar
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    The Brush Guns had a shorter stock and 26 inch barrel with a cylinder bore. Riot guns have 20 inch barrels with a cylinder bore. The barrel on the subject gun does look shorter than 20 inches. I would think if it was an original riot gun why would someone go to the trouble of cutting a couple of inches off the barrel? It’s more likely a cut-down Brush Gun.

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    Thanks to all for your help! Seems we have the answer of a date and type, the cut down barreled brush gun and a possible reblue; though they did the receiver and barrel both as the match is consistent. As an aside, family member’s passing left his original Ithaca 37 to the widow, wish we still had that early sixties Riot gun. One of the first shotties I ever fired around 70’ . It sold me on Parkerizing as it held up like no other.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sigtrig View Post
    a possible reblue
    No...a definite reblue. Not just a possibility. Wood has been sanded and refinished to go along with.

    Regards, Jim

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