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 Post subject: Model 12 Identification
PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2020 1:06 pm 
Utility Grade

Joined: Wed Dec 02, 2020 12:15 pm
Posts: 2
I'm new to Model 12's and recently acquired a field grade (?) model 12 / 30" barrel and modified choke.

It looks to have been restored at some point.
Newer wood with an incorrect butt plate ?
Serial # 931XXX puts it at 1942 ?
Matching receiver and barrel.

Any insight on this model 12 is much appreciated.

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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Identification
PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2020 4:36 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:29 am
Posts: 1542
Location: Maine
Nicely refinished metal. Might have been Simmons. Upgraded replacement wood with replacement buttplate. Seems to have alot of figure in the wrist, but can't say for sure.

Odds are it started life as a field grade. Might make a nice SC gun.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Identification
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2020 8:58 am 
Utility Grade

Joined: Wed Dec 02, 2020 12:15 pm
Posts: 2
Thanks for the reply, It looks like it might have been manufactured 9/1941. I was wondering if anyone knows what's the correct butt plate for a 41 field grade and would where would be a good place to get a reproduction of it ?

The current butt plate and screws are the worst thing about the gun.

Thanks, JWH


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Identification
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2020 11:54 am 
Crown Grade
User avatar

Joined: Wed May 20, 2009 5:55 pm
Posts: 2079
Location: Indiana
That gun most likely had a recoil pad on the original stock. CSMC has Winchester reproduction recoil pads and I’m pretty sure they have butt plates too.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Identification
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2020 5:15 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:29 am
Posts: 1542
Location: Maine
J.W.H. wrote:
The current butt plate and screws are the worst thing about the gun


That plate doesn't look bad to my eye. Again, gun's refinished with aftermarket wood. Installing an original buttplate adds nothing. Might even detract.

JMO, but chasing original condition would be throwing good money after bad.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Identification
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2020 6:19 pm 
Presentation Grade

Joined: Fri Jan 16, 2015 9:11 am
Posts: 996
No collector value, but a really nice "using" gun.
Take it out and break a bunch of clays.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Identification
PostPosted: Tue Dec 22, 2020 11:54 pm 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2009 8:46 pm
Posts: 127
Location: midwest
Samuel_Hoggson wrote:
J.W.H. wrote:
The current butt plate and screws are the worst thing about the gun


That plate doesn't look bad to my eye. Again, gun's refinished with aftermarket wood. Installing an original buttplate adds nothing. Might even detract.

JMO, but chasing original condition would be throwing good money after bad.





Can you explain what you mean when you say “throwing good money after bad ?” Without knowing how much the OP paid for the gun how can you draw a conclusion whether he’s into the gun too deep financially (bad money).

Secondly, how do you determine what level good money is ?? Actually I’m asking a slightly different question. There seems to be two categories of Winchester Model 12’s - “shooter” and “collector grade” guns. I’m not informed enough to know the assumed fine line distinction between shooter grade guns and collector grade guns.

I’ve recently gotten bit by the Model 12 bug and, as a result, I‘Ve purchased a 12, a 20, and 16 ga gun. Each gun is relatively low serial numbered (early 1940’s manufacture).
Of the three only the 12 ga would possibly be considered an original gun. That is: not reblued, original wood, non messed with full choke (35 thousandths)in the 30” Trap barrel with a two pin rib. Collector grade - not in my opinion but I’d say the three owner (counting me) gun is a very good representation of the model. It’s probably an honest 90-95% gun.

On the other hand my 20 ga has been reblued, has different (although period correct and with accurate Winchester style checkering) wood. The stock and forearm are probably not one of a kind but you could possibly argue it’s exhibition grade. The bluing is easily 98%. 28” barrel with vent rib choked IC. Operation is excellent, take up ring is in the first notch, and it’s in time. Overall, I would rate the gun a solid 97%. Is this a collector gun. Again, no.

The most recent Model 12 I purchased is a 16 ga. gun. Originally a 1942 field gun, according to the seller it was sent back to Winchester by the original owner for installation of a ventilated rib (it is marked Simmons). The wood was upgraded ( I’m pretty certain with real Winchester Trap style wood with trap grade checkering). The DAC is 1 3/8th” which would indicate a trap stock. The gun has also been reblued. Overall. a 90+% gun. The gun is choked full. Overall I say 95% - but NOT original unmolested gun by any means.

To be candid I am into each one of these guns with an average price of $1,500. Did I pay too much ? You can’t answer that question, even if you had a chance to examine the guns. What’s the market Value ? How much does the fancy wood add to the value of my guns ? How much off for the reblue, different recoil pad, not unfired with original box and papers detract from the value of the gun ? Is my (or any) 16 ga worth less because it’s been updated to Winchester specs and now the bluing and wood 98% - or is it worth more because there were fewer made ?

Why are there Model 12 owners who are shooters and not collectors ? Obviously there are purists who wouldn’t own a non modified gun and insist on “all original.” There are shooters who could care less if the gun is all original.

“Good money after bad.” Please explain


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Identification
PostPosted: Wed Dec 23, 2020 6:36 am 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:29 am
Posts: 1542
Location: Maine
Good money after bad means: additional expenditures that will not likely be recovered at sale in an open market.

Thus, the expression does not factor emotional or sentimental valuation, ie., the value a buyer or seller attaches to a firearm.

Sometimes value can be enhanced through expenditure. Suppose I acquire a firearm for zip because the owner believes it non-functional. Then I discover an easily corrected problem. I stand to recover my expenses and more. Math, really.

The (? rhetorical) questions you pose in series suggest you may be confusing personal valuation - even by individual collectors with experience - with market valuation. They are not the same. Market valuation is determined at sale. Yes, the firearms market has cycles - peaks and ebbs - but much can be learned. And knowledge can optimize returns. True of any market, not just firearms.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Identification
PostPosted: Mon Jan 04, 2021 9:47 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Tue Jun 15, 2010 5:07 pm
Posts: 1976
Location: Augusta, GA
Well said Rob.




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