Six unusual Winchester rifles

Oliver Winchester produced his first rifle, the Volcanic Repeating rifle, back in 1854, and his company occupied an honorable place in the world of American gunsmithing from 1866 to 2006.

We offer to your attention several unique models of rifles proudly named Winchester.


Many associate the Winchester name with the Wild West, and the Model 1873 was nicknamed “the rifle that conquered the West.”
This .44-40 rifle was the main weapon of Ben Cartwright, the main character of the American western series “Bonanza”.
It is believed that the custom-made Model 1886 chambered in .45-90 was Roosevelt’s favorite weapon when he went hunting. It has a luxurious, hand-grooved wooden stock and an octagonal barrel.

Theodore Roosevelt hunting rifle

However, despite the skillful work of the gunsmiths, Roosevelt sent it no less than five times for revision.

Model 70 Prototype Radio

In the 1950s, the radio airwaves were filled with the sounds of rock and roll, and America turned into a “transistor” nation. And to match the fashion of the time, in 1955 the company released a .308 caliber model with a stock-mounted radio receiver.

The speaker is located on the right side of the butt, where the letter “W” is cut. As you can guess, sales of this model were insignificant.

A miracle in miniature

In those distant times, ambitious gunsmiths on their way to success had to make miniature versions of their models. They demonstrated their skills (in woodworking and metalworking, engraving) on ​​reduced copies of weapons that they could carry with them as proof of their skill.

Model 1866 in 1 to 2 scale with octagonal barrel, made by Master Peter Alyutto. The engraving was made in the form of various wild animals.

The Big 50

This rifle was produced in response to the appearance of several British models with increased muzzle velocity intended for African safaris. The Model 1886 with a lever-action bolt chambered in .50-110 took one year to develop and was produced in limited quantities for the next 30 years.
It was one of the last models under the charge with a “half-inch” bullet, which was intended for hunting bison.

Modified Model 1873

In 1884, the Model 1873 with a lever-action bolt mechanism chambered in .38-40 was considered a good option for hunting and self-defense. But one master, Horace Warner, decided to modify the rifle with a smooth barrel. He attached a 12-gauge bolt group to the top, turning the model into a combination of an effective shotgun and rifle.
The aiming device was moved to the upper barrel, and with the help of an ingenious system of connecting levers, the trigger reached the barrel of the shotgun. Warner made three such models.