23 February 2024

This Old Gun - My Winchester 94 Part 2

 Previously, I had gone over my 1970's era Winchester 94 that you can read about here in the Part 1 of this story. If you have read my stuff before, you may know that I suffer from what I call "Can't Leave Well Enough Alone" syndrome. Well the Winchester 94 is the worst victim of that disease. 

The lever scout configuration

The rifle had started off in a bad way the day I got it from the pawn shop. Externally all seemed well until I got it home. The rear sight was the only indicator there was any issues as it was loose. Running rounds through the action, however, revealed that the cartridge stop had too much wear. The internals issues were for the most part corrected by Moss Pawn. The rear sight was replaced with a scout mount and scope for a few years. Afterward, the rifle was replaced by newer equipment. Since the rifle wasn't being fielded, I removed the scope and zeroed the Williams rear aperture sight. I wasn't happy with how short the zeroing was so I attempted to make adjustments and was very close but I couldn't get it exactly the way I wanted. Leaving unsatisfied I at least had a 100 yard zero so I checked over a few things. First is that the fiber optic front sight had been broken. I attempted to replace it with a Marbles Arms gold bead I already had but the height was very wrong. I ordered replacements that were much lower with the intent to find one that correctly matches the original rear sight at 50 yards. 

Second, I ordered a replacement sight base for the original rear barrel mounted sight. The original sight base had been filed down too much and was loose in the dovetail. The dovetail at some point had issues so I cleaned up the cut. I drifted in an original replacement from Numrich and reassembled the elevation adjustments from the ruined one. I've pretty much gotten the rifle back to it's original configuration. I removed the Williams sight entirely. At this point, this is the configuration I assume this rifle will be at for a while. 

I'm also toying with installing a Lyman tang mounted aperture sight. This idea is funny to me as when I look at everything I have, I basically have every mounting solution and sighting option for the Winchester 94 pre-AE you can have. From original sights and barrel dovetail mounted red dots to receiver sights. I have a scout mount and a side mount for scope mounts. I figure I might as well add a tang sight to the mix and maybe the Turnbull Restoration receiver red dot mount. Having all of the sighting options does help make the rifle usable for different people as needed though the goal is to get it back to stock for now.

An original rear sight is back on.

Keeping this rifle around is more about having a gunsmithing project and keeping a classic rifle than it actually being useful. It is a backup rifle for my Marlin 1894 CST but also a rifle I can take to hunt other locations where I can't take the silencer like WMA / public hunting land. 

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