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Winchester's Most Popular Firearms

By    |   Thursday, 30 April 2015 10:43 AM

Ranking Winchester’s most popular firearms is best done in the style of Academy Award nominations.

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In the category of repeating rifle with the most sentimental appeal, the Winchester Model 1873 wins hands down. As told by IMDB, the firearm made its Hollywood film debut in 1950, costarring with Jimmy Stewart, in “’73 Winchester.”

The 19th century rifle had armed westward pioneers and graced the shoulders of Buffalo Bill and Annie Oakley while setting the bar for accuracy, reliability, and fire capacity. That history as a Wild West firearm along with the popularity of the Stewart film earned the 1873's romanticized name as “The Gun That Won The West.”

In the category of lasting design that led to a popular remake is again the Winchester Model 1873. The new edition is produced by the Miroku factory in Japan, under license by Olin of Finland – the company that owns the Winchester brand today. It is the first rifle to bear the Winchester brand in a century, according to Phil Schreier, senior curator of the National Rifle Association museum.

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In a 2013 rifle face-off, the modernized ’73 wowed editors of Outdoor Life Magazine with “its sexy lines, high-quality construction, and smooth operation. With each flick of the lever and downrange impact of the .38 Specials, our smiles grew wider.”

In the bolt-action hunting rifle category, the Winchester Model 70 is rated one of the best of all time, according to Rifle Shooter Magazine.

This durable firearm dubbed “The Rifleman’s Rifle” is most favored by hunters with a range of configurations from small-animal to large game shooting.

Finally, in the most famous, most popular, best-selling rifle in U.S. history category is the Winchester Model 1894. The high-powered lever-action, center-fire repeating rifle was the first to sell more than 1 million copies with a total of 7 million sold before the Winchester factory in New Haven, Connecticut, was shut down in 2006, according to the NRA magazine American Rifleman.

Today, the Miroku gun manufacturer in Japan makes the modern version of Model ’94 for Olin Group of Finland, which bought the original Winchester Repeating Arms Company in 1935. Critics writing in the American Rifleman say the Miroku rifle is better than ever.

This article does not constitute legal advice. Check the current gun laws before purchasing or traveling with a firearm.

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Ranking Winchester’s most popular firearms is best done in the style of Academy Award nominations.
guns, winchester, firearms, gun history
Thursday, 30 April 2015 10:43 AM
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