Dating a Winchester 67

I decided that I really like the Winchester 67 when an older cousin wanted to borrow a 22 rifle to shoot gophers.  Since he knew more about firearms than I did (and this after I had been teaching at TSJC and exposed to a lot of gunsmiths) he returned the 67 with a scathing comment about it not working.  Despite his firearms expertise, I don’t believe he had ever encountered one of the old bolt single shot rifles that wasn’t self-cocking.  Still, there is little point in arguing with gun experts, so I put the rifle away, overriding the impulse to stick a cartridge in, cock the bolt, squeeze the trigger, and say “Works for me.” 

The Winchester 67 was an economy model 22, made from 1934 to 1963 – and lacking serial numbers.  Despite the lack of numbers, I wanted to know when mine was made – and despite the fact that Winchester made between 383,597 and 652,538 of these numberless little rifles, there are clues to ferret out when it was made.

The takedown screw head didn’t stick out from the stock until after 1937 – this means the rifle was made between 1934 and 37.  The finger grooves in the stock were eliminated late in 1935.  Between those two features, I know the old rifle was made in 1934 or 35 and had a suggested retail price of $5.50.  The knurling on the takedown screw – so that it can be taken down without using a penny as a screwdriver, is supposed to indicate that it was built in 1934 – but that may be stretching things a bit . . . the first model 67 left the factory in May of 1934. 

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