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 Post subject: Model 12 Barrels
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2021 12:10 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sat May 23, 2020 10:03 am
Posts: 21
Location: Pittsburgh, PA Area
Anyone aware of records which would indicate at what date/serial # Winchester transitioned their production Model 12 barrels from nickel steel to Winchester Proof Steel?

TIA,

Tom




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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Barrels
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2021 2:14 pm 
Limited Edition

Joined: Wed May 30, 2012 4:39 pm
Posts: 393
According To Riffle's book, Winchester introduced "Proof Steel" barrels in 1931. SN range: 626997 - 651255 again according to Riffle. There may have been some stainless barrels in that range....don't know.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Barrels
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2021 2:39 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sat May 23, 2020 10:03 am
Posts: 21
Location: Pittsburgh, PA Area
Thanks. I shoot trap with what appears to be a 12-gauge Model 12 special order. At first glance, it looks like a Tournament Gun (straight "English" grip & small forearm), but - on closer examination - it has a few non-standard features that make me believe it was probably a special order. It has a 32" full-choke barrel with a solid rib, and a buttstock with a longer than standard trigger pull (14-3/4") and about 1/8" to 1/4" cast-off. The barrel is marked "WINCHESTER PROOF STEEL." Serial number of the gun (6119XX) puts it in the 1930 time frame. The numbers on the receiver and receiver extension match; I have not taken the gun down to inspect the actual barrel markings.

I don't have Riffle's book. I do have Stadt's, but he's silent on the barrel steel, at least in the Model 12 chapter.

Thanks again.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Barrels
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2021 3:26 pm 
Limited Edition

Joined: Wed May 30, 2012 4:39 pm
Posts: 393
It's too bad the records for these guns were lost. Makes it a minefield for the collector but if you enjoy shooting the Model 12....who cares. Yours sounds like a great Trap gun with that 32" barrel! I shoot trap with my 30" Full choke. Did find a 30" Mod gun years ago that has a Simmons rib which makes for a great 16 yard gun. Enjoy.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Barrels
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2021 3:50 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:29 am
Posts: 1551
Location: Maine
WW did not observe FIFO for non-military contract firearms. So there is usually overlap, as most clearly seen with early post-war (ie., "transition") guns.

You might see "proof steel" parts on a gun with earlier SN than one having nickel steel parts. Same with finishes (machine blue vs Dulite), etc, etc. Indeed, a minefield.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Barrels
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2021 3:56 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sat May 23, 2020 10:03 am
Posts: 21
Location: Pittsburgh, PA Area
Thanks to both of you for the input :)


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Barrels
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2021 5:16 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Tue Jun 15, 2010 5:07 pm
Posts: 1981
Location: Augusta, GA
I am awaiting arrival of a 12 GA 2 Pin VR with a 1935 SN 685XXX which is marked Nickle Steel on the barrel. Its a 30" barrel marked and choked CYL. No indication of reblued or alteration to metal or mechanics. Its marked STANDARD TRAP on receiver extension, with long 10 1/2" Trap Forearm and first style non grip capped checkered perch belly semi pistol grip stock. Wood has been refinished at some point. It's a real dandy. I have seen Winchester Proof Steel Barrels as early as 640XXX SN range.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Barrels
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2021 10:02 pm 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Thu Jun 11, 2015 12:28 am
Posts: 254
Location: Tucson, Arizona
I found this well worn 12 gauge 28 inch S/R CYL gun on the GB site not too long ago. Proof steel barrel on a 1927 or so gun. It's lethal on the skeet field with 3/4 oz loads. Hope the pictures come up.


Image

Image

_________________
Mike
Tucson, AZ.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Barrels
PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2021 8:55 am 
Limited Edition

Joined: Wed May 30, 2012 4:39 pm
Posts: 393
The above answers show why I don't buy the Model 12 for its collector value. My dad bought me an old field grade when I was a kid which he sent to Simmons for a vent rib. I started trap shooting with that gun and have enjoyed them all my life. Their look appeals to me and, as it turned out, I can shoot them well. I'm a sucker for a "pretty" model 12 but don't really care about the value as a collector gun.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Barrels
PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2021 10:12 am 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:29 am
Posts: 1551
Location: Maine
Nickel steel was an improvement over ordnance steel commonly used for old BP guns. Proof steel was a further improvement, basically a good chrome/moly alloy. Not a metallurgist, but imagine the latter would be less brittle. M-12s with nickel steel barrels are plenty strong.


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 Post subject: Re: Model 12 Barrels
PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2021 7:42 am 
Field Grade

Joined: Mon Feb 21, 2011 2:46 pm
Posts: 43
I have a Model 1912 which according to my research dates 1916 manufacturing. Sounds almost identical to the gun described by the OPer. Mine is marked TRAP below the serial number. It is in rough but useable condition. Wish I had the abilities to post some pictures.




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