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 LOT 1030
Exceptional Documented Highly Optioned Special Order Winchester Deluxe Model 1886 Lever Action .50 Express Takedown Rifle with Factory Letter - Serial no. 124972, 50 express cal., 24 inch part octagon bbl., blue finish, walnut stock. This Winchester Model 1886 is factory documented as a deluxe
rifle in rare, highly sought after 50 Express caliber. Deluxe Model 1886s are rare. As Winchester expert
and author George Madis noted, “Deluxe Model 86s in the rifles made after 1900 are hard to find, partly due to the higher cost of deluxe features.” As for the caliber, the .50 Express cartridge was one of the most powerful commercial cartridges available at the time, and it quickly proved popular with big and dangerous game hunters. Many Winchester rifles chambered for this powerful cartridge were shipped to England and then found their way to Africa and India where they were often employed against big cats. Demand for the cartridge in the United States was low however, and relatively few of these rifles were manufactured. The Model 1886 in .50 Express was only produced in limited numbers, especially when compared to the smaller calibers. Today Winchesters in .50 Express are highly sought after collectibles. Examples in any condition are proving difficult to find.
The factory letter states the rifle was received in the warehouse on August 5, 1901 and shipped the same day with a 24 inch half octagon barrel in .50 Express black powder caliber, plain trigger, checkered pistol grip stock, Lyman front sight, shotgun rubber buttplate, takedown configuration, sling swivel, and nickel steel barrel. The rifle is fitted with a Lyman blade front sight (bead absent) and three leaf rear sight. The top barrel flat is stamped with the two-line New Haven address ahead of the rear sight and “50 EX” at the breech. The upper left barrel flat is marked “NICKEL STEEL.” The upper tang is marked “-MODEL 1886-.” The lower tang has the patent dates marking and the serial number. Sling eyelets are mounted on the underside of the forend cap and buttstock. The XX deluxe walnut forearm and pistol grip stock feature factory “H” style checkering. The pistol grip has a hard rubber Winchester cap. The buttstock is fitted with
a hard rubber Winchester shotgun buttplate. The left side of the lower tang is marked “383 XX R.” The assembly number “383” is repeated on the stock inlet. Deluxe Winchester Model 1886 rifles chambered for .50 Express cartridges are rare and extremely desirable firearms.

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