Gunboards Forums banner
1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
842 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A very good friend keeps referring to the newer 1894 Winchesters as having "pot metal" receivers. I told him that, to my knowledge, that's incorrect and a bit unfair. As far as I know, the 1894 went from a forged receiver to what I would more accurately call a heavy sheet metal receiver that gets bent into shape after 1964. It is quite adequate to the moderate cartridges for which it is built. These receivers from the post-'64 era certainly are NOT made of melted-down hood ornaments off of old Plymouths!

Granted, familiarity breeds contempt, as they say. But, sometimes enough is enough. The 1894 Winchester as a design masterpiece and has always been a good gun.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,799 Posts
Love '94 Winchesters . A fine rifle to carry out in

the field . Not a real tactical combat piece in these

times . So don't get bent out of shape by a bent

into shape '94 receiver . These rifles WORK ! :thumbsup:



FIVESHOT
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
842 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
My first real gun. I love 'em! Owned a few. At the moment I have a .38-55 from 1902.

What do you know about the actual construction of the receivers? My friend, who has retreated from calling them "pot metal" does think that they're cast. I thought that they were formed.
 

·
Gold Bullet Member and Noted Curmudgeon
Joined
·
103,552 Posts
I think the post-64 Model 94s have a malleable cast iron receiver, not one formed from sheet (even heavy sheet). Been told that, anyhow. The alloy doesn't take hot salt tank blueing well, leading to the thin iron plate for the final finish, which isn't very durable. Unless things have changed. Mechanically, the post-64 Model 94s I've handled seem to work well and hold up satisfactorily.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
724 Posts
From what I have seen and read the post 64 model 94 rifles had cast receivers which were plated with some kind of black chrome insted of blue. The finish seems to "flake off" the frame in chunks and is pretty much impossible to reblue. From a safety standpoint the post 64 rifles are perfectly serviceable just not aesthetically pleasing. By the mid 1970's I think the receivers were back to blued steel but the damage was done. The reputation of the 94 never quite recovered.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
842 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well, I don't think it's "pot metal" anyway. It irks me when guys trash the '94 and the .30-30 cartridge. My favorite one was the know-it-all at work who commented: "and you know, you really shouldn't use a .30-30 for hunting deer."
 

·
Platinum Bullet member
Joined
·
21,098 Posts
Well, I don't think it's "pot metal" anyway. It irks me when guys trash the '94 and the .30-30 cartridge. My favorite one was the know-it-all at work who commented: "and you know, you really shouldn't use a .30-30 for hunting deer."
Mine is cast - too solid to be formed sheetmetal.

There is an almost truth in the "potmetal" description, since the magazine link and some of the other internals are made of sintered metal. The mag link, which has a small tab that drops down, allowing the next round in the magazine to feed, often breaks off. I've replaced one on mine already, as have a lot of the guys at my range. WHEN the one now in use breaks (just a matter of when), I'll braze on and shape a new tab that will outlast the rest of the rifle...
 

·
Gold Bullet Member and Noted Curmudgeon
Joined
·
103,552 Posts
Well, I don't think it's "pot metal" anyway. It irks me when guys trash the '94 and the .30-30 cartridge. My favorite one was the know-it-all at work who commented: "and you know, you really shouldn't use a .30-30 for hunting deer."
Well, a lot of folks ignore that every year (and have for almost 120 years so far) and I imagine that there have been more deer killed with the 30-30 than any other extant cartridge. Wonder what that fella thinks a deer hunter neeeds to be using? Heck - i know a poacher who regularly kills deer using a .22LR. One shot and dead whitetail. Has a suppressed .22 bolt gun fitted with a night sight and a couple of blinds near feeders, and one of these days he's gonna get caught and be in a heap of trouble, but in the meantime.... Anyhow, if a 22LR will do the work, a 30-30 will do it a lot better.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,200 Posts
I have both a pre 64 (32 special) and a post 64 (30-30) and a post 64 94-22. The fit and finish is a bit better on the pre 64, and maybe the action a hair smoother, but the 30-30 made in 1980 is everybit as servicable as the 32 special. I dont even want to think of how many thousand rounds of 22 long rifle have gone down the tube of the 94-22. As far as the 30-30 not being good for deer, I would just laugh.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,086 Posts
when i work one of my pre war lever actions i can feel the american workers pride in it, but i know that winchester had to change to compete in the arms trade. my post 64 winchesters are good serviceable rifles, but it is just what i like personaley. eastbank.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
842 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Like you say, Winchester was forced to compete with the times. Nobody would buy a thousand-dollar '94. All the firearms manufacturers have adapted. I can see some rationale for engineering taking the place of hand labor. Times have changed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,079 Posts
My understanding is the post 64 Winchester 94s were a tough casting. According to Rennberg's (I am hipshooting from memory and may have his name wrong) latest book on the Winchester 94, the later ones (perhaps all angle ejects?) went back to forged steel. I don't have the book in front of me. I highly recommend it if you haven't seen it and it can be purchased quite reasonably by on-line selelrs such as amazon and dealoz.com.
There was nothing fundamentally wrong with post 64 Winchesters and to some extent may have had a hatchet job from the gun writers of the day.
The bluing on the 94s were an issue, but the nickel steel on early pre-64 Winchesters also had trouble holding bluing. Another complaint I heard was that the workings of the action was more "scratchy" and perhaps noisy. Some of the 1964 era stocks are pretty ugly with a sort of blonde finish, but the guns were basically sound.
I always thought it ironic that Winchester sales were falling off, leaving management to try to cut costs. In some cases, pre-64 guns such as the Model 12 pump shotgun that weren't selling well in 1963 were probably double 1963 retail figures within a few years of 1964.
The Model 70s never used cast receivers but were damned by some for getting away from the controlled feed and having poor workmanship in many cases on stock inletting, etc. I believe it was in the 1968 time frame that Winchester cleaned up their act on stocks and stuff on a lot of their guns, especially the Model 70s, and began to re-win acceptance by most people save those who insisted on controlled action feed and refused to forgive. Later on Winchester remedied that problem as well on some of their upper end rifles.
I think it slightly humorous that the Winchester 190/290 series .22 autos are not particularly prized by Winchester collectors but outsold all the "classic" models by a country mile.
I recall an old American Rifleman article or series on current American gun makers and their manufacturing techniques in the 1980s I think and if I recall right, Marlin considered modifying their manufacturing techniques for their 336 series rifles but concluded it was not economically feasible. Savage I believe tried to bring back the 99 using cast receivers from Astra in Spain (perhaps they weren't cast but that's what I recall reading) but still coulnd't produce them for less than the $600 range and gave up.
Not saying that I wouldn't prefer a pre-64 (and that's the sole 94 Winchester I have) but there's nothing inherently wrong with the post 64 rifles and the later ones are probably quite nice from all standards.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
I have a 1973, 1979 and a 1993. The finish is noticeably different on the 73, seems to be a black coating, similar to a more modern finish like a Lauer durakote, it is original and shows a little wear. The '79 and the '95 are a much nicer finish, not blue like the old ones but the blue/black used on all new guns. They all work well and fulfill the purpose they were built for.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
The 64 to 74-79 `94`s were sintered metal (powdered), and were formed in a mold. Because of the make up of the powdered metal, they won`t take blueing, they have to be copper flashed, then "stained" black, which makes them look painted or coated as some one stated before.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Hi, just wanted to add something here, my first love of a model 94 didn't even come from Winchester, it came from Daisy. When I was a kid my first "rifle" was a Daisy model 1894 "Spittin Image". It looked just like a Winchester and if you were any distance at all it would be real hard to tell them apart. It was side loading, only held 15 BBs which was one disadvantage to others, like the Red Ryder, but then I could get through the woods without the noise of a few hundred BBs rattlin around in a can, the magazine was tubular, spring loaded and held em all nice and tight. :)

Next came my favorite shotgun (an Ithaca, mdl 37) , growing up in Southern Illinois, we were limited to hunting with a shotgun for deer with a riffled slug, so that stuck with me for several years. In the mid 80s I moved to Texas. Around 87 it was time to buy a rifle for deer hunting, and maybe it was because of my "first love", maybe it was because of my fondness to old Westerns, I don't really know. But I walked into a gun shop and right off the bat a pretty little Winchester model 94 in a .30-30 caught my eye. I still have that rifle, plan to have it till someone pries my fingers off of it and it still looks as good and shoots as good as the day I brought it home, except for a few dings here and there in the wood from carrying it around in the brush.

Now I don't think I've ever shot a pre 64 model, so I can't really compare, but I can tell you that the Winchester 94 in my safe is still my favorite rifle and there are more than a few deer that would tell you if they could, that the .30-30 did just fine. Anyway, I'm new to the forum and was just browsing, saw this thread and couldn't help but comment. Y'all have a great day!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
The Model 94 Winchester action has always been a forged, high carbon, steel part. Many changes were made to other parts and sintering was used to make shell lifters and even some lifters of sheet metal. However, other no critical action frames were changed to "pot metal" or sintering in 1964. The integrity of the action was never compromised from a high carbonn steel forging. They did switch materials for the forging from one type of high carbon to another steel which made blueing a different process but the structural integrity was just as good.
 

·
Platinum Bullet Member
Joined
·
181 Posts
Hi, just wanted to add something here, my first love of a model 94 didn't even come from Winchester, it came from Daisy. When I was a kid my first "rifle" was a Daisy model 1894 "Spittin Image". It looked just like a Winchester and if you were any distance at all it would be real hard to tell them apart. It was side loading, only held 15 BBs which was one disadvantage to others, like the Red Ryder, but then I could get through the woods without the noise of a few hundred BBs rattlin around in a can, the magazine was tubular, spring loaded and held em all nice and tight. :)

Next came my favorite shotgun (an Ithaca, mdl 37) , growing up in Southern Illinois, we were limited to hunting with a shotgun for deer with a riffled slug, so that stuck with me for several years. In the mid 80s I moved to Texas. Around 87 it was time to buy a rifle for deer hunting, and maybe it was because of my "first love", maybe it was because of my fondness to old Westerns, I don't really know. But I walked into a gun shop and right off the bat a pretty little Winchester model 94 in a .30-30 caught my eye. I still have that rifle, plan to have it till someone pries my fingers off of it and it still looks as good and shoots as good as the day I brought it home, except for a few dings here and there in the wood from carrying it around in the brush.

Now I don't think I've ever shot a pre 64 model, so I can't really compare, but I can tell you that the Winchester 94 in my safe is still my favorite rifle and there are more than a few deer that would tell you if they could, that the .30-30 did just fine. Anyway, I'm new to the forum and was just browsing, saw this thread and couldn't help but comment. Y'all have a great day!
Hey, fabrat. I enjoyed reading your history of what the guns mean to you. I'm very fond of my 94, too, although I only acquired it in the last few years. Mine is also .30-.30, a 70's vintage with none of that AE or tang safety nonsense. What ammo do you like best for yours?

Welcome to the forums--there's a lot of good info here. Are you still in Texas? I ask as a fellow Texan, and I say again, welcome.

BTW--I think those Daisy BB guns planted the seed in lots of minds to love the straight stocked lever action rifle. ;)
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top