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Winchester 97 questions

Cofachique Dick

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Don't need another shotgun, but thinking about getting a '97 just because.....


Knowing nothing about them, can you guys tell me what to look for in an old gun? Trouble spots, things that wear out and turn a shooter into a wall hanger?





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With the bolt cocked back, see if the bolt has any up and down movement. If it has too much it won't cock the hammer. The less play the better.


If it's a takedown, see if the barrel serial number matches the receiver serial number. If they don't it's no big deal, but, don't pay as much if they don't match.


I bought one real cheap. I don't think the seller knew, but, the receiver was cracked in the threaded area where the barrel assembly attached. Had to part that one out. Look for cracks there.


Look for play where the barrel and receiver meet (takedown model). Some play can be adjusted out, but only to a point.


If possible, see if you can try before you buy. Make sure it works.


A lot of '97s are loaded one at a time. If you think you're going to use the magazine, say for Wild Bunch, make sure it feeds from the magazine.


I'm sure there are more.

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Make sure that the screw heads are in good shape. If they look like they been removed using a butter knife, chances are they can't be removed and that's why they look that way. Also, if it's an older model in original condition, make sure that it will take 2 3/4 inch shells. All of this is from my personal experience :o


It's vintage 1899 (3 screw) which I had to buy a new carrier for (after drilling out screws) and lengthen the chamber. Runs like a dream now!!


To bad I found out later, that I'm '97 handicapped.

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Cracks around the stock wrist and forearm

Excessive movement of the bolt

Springiness of the extracters

Tightness of the barrle fit

Tightness of the carrier with bolt open

Run snap caps through the action to make sure that every cycles

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