Serially numbered 596xx, this Model 63 Winchester .22 Auto was manufactured in late 1946. It boasts a distinguished career hunting fox squirrels, raccoons and rabbits in the Hatchie River Bottom of adjacent Hardeman County, Tennessee. Its surface detractions derive from that career and atmosphere; nevertheless, we will argue for Very Good designation and the photos should allow interested parties to concur or dissent. The rear half of this rifle is the better half finishwise, and gets on toward 85 percent. Original steel buttplate is spotty with some white showing, and one lightly rusty area near the magazine tube aperture at 5 o’clock. The tube itself is a nice gray with about 30 percent dark area. The chief detraction to the buttstock is a half-inch wide area of wear to the finish adjacent to the buttstock. We believe this is from carrying it under the hunter’s arm, but there is a possibility that the buttstock was shortened, since the length of pull is 13, not 14, inches. If shortening was the case, then it was done professionally – probably by Mr. Ed Mason in Memphis, because there are no mill marks and the buttplate is well fitted. Note the excellent condition of the rear part of the mechanism.
The barrel on this rifle is, of course, 23 inches long from muzzle to bolt face. The forward section of this rifle will only grade about 60 – 70 percent finishwise, because there is extensive light spotting, more conspicuous on the left side of the receiver and on the forend cap. While any pitting on the left side surface is very light, there is one place on the left side of the barrel at 9 o’clock, between 6 and 7 inches forward of the forend, where there is also very light pitting. Only two of these places can be felt with pressure to one’s hands, and they are moderate and light if not negligible. More extensive and conspicuous pitting on the left side of the scope, on its mounts, and on the right rear side of the eyepiece bell, and more visible and feel-able. Forend has the appearance of two cracks, neither of which exhibit any separation. On the right side of the forend, the crack runs about 3 inches forward from the receiver, but it is so tight it looks like a crease, not a crack. Left side crack is shorter, but only barely conspicuous for about one inch. The bore, like the other internal parts, is Very Good to Excellent, with very strong clean rifling. It has perhaps some leading, but no pitting that we can detect. Scope is a Weaver K-2.5x, marked El Paso, Texas. We do not believe it ever had any turret covers, because it is not threaded for them. Despite the Scope’s outer surface’s extensive light pitting, the scope is reasonably clear to look through and has, of course, standard fine cross hairs. We will attempt to show with our photos that the three screws that anchor the rear mount to the receiver are indeed through the receiver, but they are flush and well executed.
While we have dwelt on this rifle’s detractions, we also point out its strong suites. The rear half of the rifle approaches Excellent status. Despite the pair of cracks and few creases, scuffs and pecks on the left- and under-side of the forend, it retains a considerable amount of what appears to be its original finish. Bluing is strong and intact on the receiver and barrel, despite the limited detractions we have noted above. The scope is period, early 1950s at the latest. We’re offering this attractive, serviceable, collectable Model 63 Winchester for only $ 579.95
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Robertson Trading Post
117 Front Street
PO Box 365
Henderson, TN 38
john at robertsontradingpost dot com
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