Author Topic: the Russian  (Read 851 times)

Offline KWK

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the Russian
« on: April 09, 2022, 08:41:09 PM »
Perhaps this has been debated here, but this original carbine, in 44 Russian, looks a bit suspicious. If it's for real, it would, to my way of thinking, be the most desirable '66 around: The oldest Winchester you can readily reload for.

However, that barrel doesn't look quite right. Maybe it's the lighting, but it looks like caustic bluing. The barrel stamp looks odd, too.

Regardless, some collector thought it worthy of a high price, but given its uniqueness, I'd have thought it would go for more than it did.
Karl

Offline Books OToole

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2022, 08:47:41 AM »
I am not an expert on case sizes etc., but I have run across '66s converted from .44 rimfire to .44 Russian.
I believe for the modern CAS shooter that desires a certain amount of authenticity, .44 Russian is the closest (practical) option you can get to the original.

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PS - And I have a Uberti '66 converted from .44 Special to .44 Russian.   
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Offline Coffinmaker

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #2 on: April 10, 2022, 08:54:33 AM »
 :)  KWK  ;)

Well, I don't consider myself and authority.  More of a Hack.  Worked on a lot of '66s (replicants) and some were originals.  Studied a lot of known historical information and lots of anecdotal stuff about the 1966 and the Transitional Henry (there were seven known).  That would indicate to me, Winchester was probably up to something.

The as shown sample example shows no obvious signs of having been put into service.  Probably shot very little and kept in a gun cabinet it's entire life.  I have no doubt it's authentic.  Made by Winchester.  It is also known, Winchester built proto- typical rifles and when they were finished piddling with them, they were sold.  It's marvelous the rifle was maintained in such pristine condition.

I could, would, should, will, DROOL ALL OVER it.  I have built several 1866 replicants to run 44 Russian.  To have one on an original frame??  Priceless.  Of course, I wouldn't turn down one chambered in 44 Stetson Central Fire neither!!

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Offline KWK

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2022, 09:22:25 AM »
Thanks for commenting, Coffinmaker. Since it's deemed a factory original, you and I must draw lots, or duel, or the like, to see who gets to drool on it. I'm not wild about barrel bands (they look crude), but this carbine will rank as My Favorite Winchester.
Karl

Offline David Battersby

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #4 on: April 10, 2022, 09:44:13 AM »
 That rifle is in absolutely unbelievable condition for it's age.  WOW!
I (like many here I guess) have rifles that are less than 10 years old with a lot more bumps and scratches.   I understand not being carried or fired stopped wear and tear. How was this rifle stored and cared for so that the bluing, color cased hardening and wood did not "age".   
I watched a Rock Island Auction where a beat up, re blued, mismatched Henry with a sewer pipe bore sold for twice the price.
I sincerely hope that whoever owns it appreciates what they have......and hopefully shoot it once in a while.
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Re: the Russian
« Reply #5 on: Today at 04:59:05 AM »

Offline Pettifogger

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #5 on: April 10, 2022, 10:44:06 AM »
All my collector books are packed and out in the garage.  But there were many late production 66s made in .44 Henry Centerfire.  Winchester made them to help sell the last of the 66s in the 1890s.  I have seen a couple of them over the years.  Here is a little information.

https://www.collectorsfirearms.com/products/56278-winchester-model-1866-44-centerfire-w6526.html

I´m looking for infomation regarding the 44 HENRY CENTERFIRE FLAT ctge. wich was used in a transitional Winchester 1866 before the introduction of the Model of 1873.
According to George Madis book “The Winchester Book” page 95, 1020 centerfire conversion 1866 carbines were send to Brazil with ammo produced by Winchester, ammo bears no headstamp.
Here in Argentina there are some 44 Henry centerfire cartridges produced by SFM, but no one made by Winchester.
Could anyone share some info or pics of the ctge. or the box ?.
Thanks in advance.

Offline Pettifogger

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2022, 10:55:02 AM »
Hopefully there is a photo below.  Number 6


Offline Trailrider

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #7 on: April 10, 2022, 02:00:58 PM »
Any comparison between .44 Henry Central Fire and .44 Russian?
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Offline Pettifogger

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #8 on: April 10, 2022, 02:20:07 PM »
The .44 Russian was the first cartridge to use inside lubed bullets rather than heeled bullets.  Thus the case is larger in diameter than the .44 Henry.  The Smith & Wesson .44 American has dimensions very close to the .44 Henry rimfire or centerfire.  When the Russians suggested seating the bullet so the case lube was inside the case and protected that required the case to be larger in diameter.  This new larger case became the .44 Russian.

Offline Coffinmaker

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #9 on: April 11, 2022, 09:26:00 AM »

 :)  Trailrider  ;)

Some, but not much.  The 44 Henry Flat case was .875 in length and the 44 Russian was/is .970.  A piddling difference.

A point, however.  Centerfire 1866 were NOT produced for domestic sale in the U.
S. and the rifles produced for export to South America were not Central Fire conversions.  Those guns were built as Central Fire from inception.  Very very different Breach Block.

Only a very few Central Fire 1866s have surfaced in this country and those were repatriated from South America.  I have actually seen exactly one.

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #10 on: Today at 04:59:05 AM »

Offline Cliff Fendley

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2022, 09:31:13 PM »
All interesting for sure.

Cartridge length and by name both being called a 44 I guess you could say a Russian is closest and would have worked in an original because of it's length.

For modern CAS using modern reproductions it seems to make more sense to me to use a 45 rather than a 44 russian to closely replicate the performance in a 66 or henry. Regarding bullet size and grains of powder if someone is wanting to replicate the power factor using a modern reproduction I've always thought it would be hard to do any better than a 45 Schofield. Correct me if I'm wrong but I thought the original 44 was really a 44 or more like .445 to be exact which is actually much closer in size to a .452 than it is a .429 and a 45 Schofield uses 28 grains of powder same as original 44 henry.

So would a 200 grain bullet over 28 grains of BP in a Schofield case not be about as close as you will get to how the gun handles regarding recoil and performance as an original would have been?
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Offline Abilene

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2022, 01:33:04 AM »
Hi Cliff, you may be right.  But I'll just mention that I shot BP Schofields in my '73 Trapper exactly once.  250gr Desperado bullet over 28gr of FFFg Goex.  Super messy, lots of fouling into the action requiring lots of misting.  I realize not all chambers are equal, etc, but that carbine is strictly smokeless now (it's my Wild Bunch gun), but plenty of others for smoke.

Offline Tascosa Joe

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #12 on: May 04, 2022, 08:19:10 AM »
After annealing my .45 Schofield cases, my .45 cal Henry and 2 66's shoot pretty clean with 3F Goex.  I will admit I shoot a 38-40 73 a lot more.
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Offline Fox Creek Kid

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #13 on: May 19, 2022, 10:36:59 AM »
The .44 Russian was the first cartridge to use inside lubed bullets rather than heeled bullets.  Thus the case is larger in diameter than the .44 Henry.  The Smith & Wesson .44 American has dimensions very close to the .44 Henry rimfire or centerfire.  When the Russians suggested seating the bullet so the case lube was inside the case and protected that required the case to be larger in diameter.  This new larger case became the .44 Russian.

Ah, the myth that refuses to die. The .44 Russian as originally loaded used an OUTSIDE lubed bullet. The first inside lubed CF metallic ctg. rd. was made in 1865:  the 56-50 Spencer.

Back to the .44 Russian...  It was only at the behest of a famous target shooter (Bennett or Paine, can't remember which) that UMC started making inside lubed .44 Russian ctgs. due to fouling concerns and that was in the 1880's.

Here are some photos of early .44 Russian ctgs. to confirm this:

https://www.oldammo.com/september04.htm

Offline Sir Charles deMouton-Black

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #14 on: May 19, 2022, 11:14:44 AM »
If I understand, the earliest .44 RUSSIAN was very much like the .44 American? Only later, it seems, that the case was made wider to make an inside lubed case to accomodate the same bullet?
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Offline greyhawk

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #15 on: May 19, 2022, 10:53:58 PM »
:)  KWK  ;)

Well, I don't consider myself and authority.  More of a Hack.  Worked on a lot of '66s (replicants) and some were originals.  Studied a lot of known historical information and lots of anecdotal stuff about the 1966 and the Transitional Henry (there were seven known).  That would indicate to me, Winchester was probably up to something.

The as shown sample example shows no obvious signs of having been put into service.  Probably shot very little and kept in a gun cabinet it's entire life.  I have no doubt it's authentic.  Made by Winchester.  It is also known, Winchester built proto- typical rifles and when they were finished piddling with them, they were sold.  It's marvelous the rifle was maintained in such pristine condition.

I could, would, should, will, DROOL ALL OVER it.  I have built several 1866 replicants to run 44 Russian.  To have one on an original frame??  Priceless.  Of course, I wouldn't turn down one chambered in 44 Stetson Central Fire neither!!

Play Safe Out There

I know nutink - not a collector at all - but if that gun is kosher it seems too cheap to me - kinda too good to be true? woulda thought those specs and that condition would make two or three times as much ? ? or just a slow day at the auctions? .........................

Offline nativeshootist

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #16 on: May 19, 2022, 11:56:24 PM »
I personally think that this rifle is a legit made winchester, I mean why wouldn't they experiment with their guns? They most likely had a tool room for prototypes and having to make a 66 in 44 russian couldn't have been much different than the rimfire. One thing I can see it being a problem was that most if not all 44 russian have a pointed nose and could set off rounds in the magazine. Winchester probably had enough pull back then to start influencing the market into turning the 44 russian cartridges from pointed to flat point. But I see the rifle as one off as Winchester was trying to retire the 66 and move it towards the 73 rifle.

Offline Dave T

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #17 on: May 20, 2022, 10:13:35 AM »
If one of the reproduction makers would build and chamber one of those I'd have to buy one. (smile)

Dave

PS: Same for a repro Henry chambered for the Russian.

Offline Fox Creek Kid

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Re: the Russian
« Reply #18 on: May 20, 2022, 08:11:04 PM »
Trivia:  The very first Colt Model A (SAA) was chambered in .44 Russian.  ;D  The Military then told Colt to rechamber it for .44 S&W American for the first trials in 1872. Truth is stranger than fiction.

 

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