Winchester 1897 16 Gauge

Discussion in 'General Shotgun Discussion' started by Polygon, Jun 19, 2011.

  1. Polygon

    Polygon New Member

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    I had completely forgotten but my grandfather left me a 1897 16 gauge. I'd like to tear it down an clean it and take it out shooting. However, I had a couple a questions. Hopefully someone has the answers.

    1. I was wondering when this gun was manufactured? There's a shot of the serial below.

    2. How much would this gun be worth?

    3. Most importantly, can I use modern shells in this gun?

    Thanks,
    Clint

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  2. davemccarthy707

    davemccarthy707 New Member

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    1-1907
    2-I would easily pay 800-1000 for that here in Canada.
    3-No problem shooting modern 16 ga as long as its not steel shot.
     

  3. 30-30remchester

    30-30remchester New Member

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    I am away from my books at present but I believe the 16 guage shells in 1907 were only 2 9/16" long instead of the normal 2 3/4" of todays ammo. As for the firearm itself I see no reason to "tear it down" and clean it. More damage has been done to firearms by improper cleaning and disassembly than by neglect. This is a great looking firearm that should be left just as gramps left it. Any alteration or refinish will be forever removing this grand old guns history.
     
  4. Polygon

    Polygon New Member

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    Wow!

    Thanks for the info.

    Hmm...

    That's concerning. When you have a chance to look through your info could you let me know for sure on the shells?

    Also, I have absolutely no desire to try and "restore" the gun. I know that altering the gun from it's current cosmetic condition would be a crime and would only hurt the value of the gun. No, what I meant was a cleaning and lubrication of the internals.
     
  5. spittinfire

    spittinfire New Member Supporter

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    A beauty of a 16ga! I'm a huge fan of 16s and would be happy to add that one to my collection. Take care of it.
     
  6. BillM

    BillM Active Member Supporter

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    It's chambered for 2 9/16 shells. The 97 is a strong action, and running
    some 2 3/4 light loads through it won't hurt it, but to do it right have a
    gunsmith lengthen the chamber for 2 3/4 ammo. I had it done on my old
    97 16 ga, and it functions just fine. Really doesn't have any negative
    effect on value.

    Value? Around here (Pacific Northwest) a good functional 16 ga 97
    without a lot of finish left on it will go $150-$300. 16 ga isn't real
    popular in this area. In 12 ga you can double those prices---the
    cowboy action shooters grab them fast.
     
  7. Polygon

    Polygon New Member

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    Thanks! :)

    Now that I'm aware of it, it's going to be taken well care of.

    It seems we have some old rounds that were being fired in the gun regularly back when my grandpa had it. I'll have to go look and see what they were using. My father is telling me that they were 2 3/4. I'm going to have a gunsmith check it out and see if it's already been lengthened. If not, I just might have it done.
     
  8. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    The 2 9/16ths shells (aka 67mm) are getting hard to find. There ARE some 2 1/2 shells out there (Old European standard size). RST Shotshells


    Or, get a loader, trim your hulls to length, and roll your own-

    Or find a smith- he will need to extend the forcing cone in the barrel, and MAY need to open the ejection port a hair.
     
  9. davemccarthy707

    davemccarthy707 New Member

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    Sorry I mislead you. I forgot about the old 2 9/16 inch 16 ga shells.
     
  10. Sonnypie

    Sonnypie New Member

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    That's a beaut!
    I love old guns.
    If/when you shoot it, your sweat melds with your Grandpa's.
    I love the nostalgia of knowing who held the firearm, the life and times of it's history.

    [ame="http://www.google.com/search?q=winchester+model+1897&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:eek:fficial&client=firefox-a"]Winchester Model 1897[/ame]
     
  11. Polygon

    Polygon New Member

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    Turns out he was shooting modern shells in it. I found some old Federal rounds that he had. Regardless, I'm going to have a gun smith check it out first.

    No worries.

    Thanks!

    I know what you mean. I just wish I could have been older to go shooting with my grandfather while he was around.