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Old 09-29-2020, 06:50 PM
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Thumbs up Winchester query, please humor me.

Pre 64, 30/30, what is the proper way to load it?
If I put one shell in and it goes to the mag and the gate closes, I cannot put another round in.
To fill the mag I have to slide one shell in hold it at the halfway point in the gate, then slide another shell in pushing on the primer and then the halfway point again, doing this until the mag is full.
I had a new base plate installed and was told this is the nature of the beast, I've delved into this on the 'net and got the same answers, but I never see the rifleman do that, the last sentence is tongue in cheek.
This has probably been beat to death here, and if the mods want to pull it I'll understand, but if you guys can please humor me.
I've lucked out here with my breda and my coke queries so I'm hoping to bat 1.000, thanx
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Old 09-29-2020, 07:26 PM
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That's how I load the Model 94 Win. When you can't push anymore in, either stop and work the lever to load the first shot into the chamber. Then release the hammer and drop it back to half-cock safety. OR, don't put the last one in and cock it like they do on TV to chamber a round when you need it. Same with the older Marlins. PLEASE practice with an empty (ammo-less) gun with releasing the hammer safely after cocking the gun. My first ex almost blew my foot off when her thumb slipped off the hammer. I could feel the bullet hit right beside my right foot! Yeah, leave a little sticking out if you can't get one in the closed gate.
Oh, when you load the gun, make sure it isn't pointing South.
By the way, don't try to chamber a round with one hand like Chuck Connors does. You WILL drop the rifle!
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Last edited by jeffrefrig; 09-29-2020 at 07:30 PM. Reason: Forgot one sentence
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Old 09-29-2020, 08:44 PM
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The Rifleman used a Winchester M-92. It is a little easier to load because the cartridge is shorter.

I load a M-94 like you describe too.
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Old 09-29-2020, 09:36 PM
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Originally Posted by jeffrefrig View Post
That's how I load the Model 94 Win. When you can't push anymore in, either stop and work the lever to load the first shot into the chamber. Then release the hammer and drop it back to half-cock safety. OR, don't put the last one in and cock it like they do on TV to chamber a round when you need it. Same with the older Marlins. PLEASE practice with an empty (ammo-less) gun with releasing the hammer safely after cocking the gun. My first ex almost blew my foot off when her thumb slipped off the hammer. I could feel the bullet hit right beside my right foot! Yeah, leave a little sticking out if you can't get one in the closed gate.
Oh, when you load the gun, make sure it isn't pointing South.
By the way, don't try to chamber a round with one hand like Chuck Connors does. You WILL drop the rifle!
Great, thanx for taking the time, and thanx for the rifleman input, i thought that could catch a funny when I wrote it.
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Old 09-29-2020, 09:39 PM
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Originally Posted by armadillo View Post
The Rifleman used a Winchester M-92. It is a little easier to load because the cartridge is shorter.

I load a M-94 like you describe too.
Thank you also for your input, to me just seems funny that it is such a pain to load, but, getting used to it should/will make it easier.
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Old 09-29-2020, 09:56 PM
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You should be able to completely insert a round into the magazine tube through the loading gate,,and have the gate close behind it.
Then be able to insert another round into the magazine (if there's room of course) behind that first one by simply pushing in the loading gate with the tip of the bullet on the round in hand.

That last motion should push the round(s) already in the magazine tube slightly forward, allow the gate to be depressed fully and the new round to be inserted into the magazine.

This is the way the rifle/carbine was designed.
On the back side of the loading gate (I think the factory calls it the loading spring) is a rib that is tapered downward and towards the rear of the gate.
The rounds that are already inserted in the mag tube are pushed backwards by the mag spring and they sit just slightly behind the front edge of the gate itself but up against that tapered rib.
Upon pressing in on the loading gate, the round(s) are pushed forward by the taper of that small rib and the downward motion of the gate itself.
Now the gate is down and open,,the rounds in the magazine are held forward at the front edge of the gate,,and the next round can be inserted into the magazine.

The 94, 92, 86,,they all work the same.

The problem is with many of the post 64 and usually it's the late 70's and into the 80's production Model 94's.
Pre 64's will have the same issue also, but it's not as common as with post 64's
That gate does not fit correctly, better said that small tapered rib on it's backside is not the correct angle and usually is rough machined or cast is the usual problem on the post 64's.
Pre-64's can be just plain wear. Sometimes someone decides to reshape parts to make them work better and things like this result.
There's not a lot of difference in the part being good to go and one that doesn't work correctly

When pressing down on the gate, instead of smoothly moving the round(s) in the magazine forward and allowing you to simply insert another rd,,you get the gate not moving at all. You can't depress it, it won't open to allow a new round into the magazine.

As a result, many owners of post 64 94's have adopted a method of loading where they push a round 1/2 way into the gate and no more. Then the next one again 1/2 way,,ect. All this to keep the rounds in the magazine from backing up and letting the gate close.
'Cause once it's closed,,you can't get any more rounds into the mag.

It's not supposed to be that way,,was never designed to be that way,,but since so many Winchesters left the factory that way and people don't question it.

An older rifle might be plain old wear.

Take the loading gate out and inspect the back side. Usually you can reshape that rib and in the very least give it a good smoothing and polish.
Some will need a replacement if the originals are so badly formed or worn.
It must be able to cam the rounds in the magazine forward a small amt to allow the gate itself to be fully depressed.

Last edited by 2152hq; 09-29-2020 at 10:03 PM.
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Old 09-29-2020, 10:06 PM
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All my lever guns load the easiest by putting the round in as far as the rim and using the next round to finish pushing it into the tube. It’s worked well on Winchesters and Marlins. Can’t say if it’s true for others.
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Old 09-29-2020, 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Jessie View Post
All my lever guns load the easiest by putting the round in as far as the rim and using the next round to finish pushing it into the tube. Itís worked well on Winchesters and Marlins. Canít say if itís true for others.
Thatís the way Iíve always done it. No reason to let the gate snap closed after every round, until the last one. Works great as long as you can count.
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Old 09-29-2020, 10:43 PM
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This is one reason why I dislike lever actions. I find bolt actions safer and usually more powerful.

A point: The M-64 is a rifle form of the M-94 carbine. TV westerns usually use M-92, a different action design, although both by John Browning.

Last edited by Texas Star; 09-29-2020 at 11:17 PM.
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Old 09-29-2020, 10:46 PM
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Originally Posted by sigp220.45 View Post
Thatís the way Iíve always done it. No reason to let the gate snap closed after every round, until the last one. Works great as long as you can count.
Itís definitely easier and faster that way. I always did that too even though I did not have the OPís issue.

But that does not negate 2152hqís point that it should work with a fully closed gate too. If you actually use the rifle, like I did for deer hunting, it would be a pain not to be able to top off the magazine after firing one or a couple of rounds in the field.
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Old 09-29-2020, 11:13 PM
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It works the same whether youíre loading from scratch or topping it off after a couple of shots.
The trouble with pushing a round fully into the tube and allowing the gate to close is that the gate, and not the next round youíre pushing in, has to push that preceding round forward.
Itís just physics. Pushing a round forward with the next round is easier than having the gate have to push it forward by first moving down and trying to push that round forward at the same time.
They both will work but Iíve found using the next round as the ď pusherĒ is much easier.
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Old 09-30-2020, 12:06 AM
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I was taught to use the next round to push rather than the gate.
I wear gloves with lever guns as the last round in the gate can pinch, levers can pinch and Chuck did as well.
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Old 09-30-2020, 02:22 AM
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Yup, I load all of my lever guns just like that, Model 94s and Model 92s. I always try to ensure that the "last round" doesn't drop in until I push the "next round" behind it.

The Rifleman takes place before the invention of the Model 94 so he uses a Model 92 in .44-40, which is almost period appropriate.

The problem is that the show is an early 1880s period piece so his rifle is 10 years ahead of its time. But at least it's not a rifle caliber M94, which would have been really weird.

Many western movies and TV shows use incorrect rifles. The correct Winchesters would be the 1866 and 1873 or the earlier version, the Henry. There are very few westerns that take place in the modern era, meaning modern rifle/smokeless era - post 1892/1984. The Wild Bunch was late enough and any movie about the Dalton Gang is late enough. Not many others.
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Old 09-30-2020, 05:04 AM
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When I used to hunt, I used an old Marlin 30-30 lever action. And now, thinking back, I WAS able to top off as mentioned above. I didn't like the way I had to eject every cartridge to unload it when I got back to my car or camp. This old Model 94 Win I have now must have that thing in the loading gate worn out, because I have the same problem as the OP. Don't cringe, but a pocket screwdriver will fit right in between the gate and loaded cartridge to pry open the gate. Don't do that, though! This rifle needs some real gunsmith to make it right again, but, I don't hunt anymore so I'll probably just leave it as is.
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Old 09-30-2020, 05:05 AM
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Hmmm ive always pushed the round fully into the tube. But ive only really used Marlins. Never had this sort of issue.
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Old 09-30-2020, 09:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jessie View Post
All my lever guns load the easiest by putting the round in as far as the rim and using the next round to finish pushing it into the tube. Itís worked well on Winchesters and Marlins. Canít say if itís true for others.
This is the method I have always used for my 1970's model 94, never really thought it was a problem ...just seemed the easiest way to load it ...
It's only a problem if you "Think" it's a problem ...
Think , No Problem and it's no longer an issue ...just a good way to load it .

Like other areas ...you can't believe everything you see on 1960's made for television TV Western's . Ever wonder how Steve McQueen in Wanted Dead or Alive got those 45-70 rounds he carried in his belt shoved into the cut down model 92 ? He Didn't ...they stayed in his belt loops it was just TV !
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Old 09-30-2020, 09:33 AM
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Its worth mentioning...flatter the better with the bullet for ease of loading.
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Old 09-30-2020, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwpercle View Post
This is the method I have always used for my 1970's model 94, never really thought it was a problem ...just seemed the easiest way to load it ...
It's only a problem if you "Think" it's a problem ...
Think , No Problem and it's no longer an issue ...just a good way to load it .
Letís not lose sight of the original issue:

On the OPís rifle, something does not appear to work so you have to do the half-in method. Itís a mechanical malfunction, not a matter of wishful thinking, and an explanation has likely be provided above.
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Old 09-30-2020, 11:30 AM
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Default Having over a dozen lever guns.

Some of them are definitely easier to load than others.

Likely why my Winchester model 1895 and my Browning BLR model 81 see the most use.
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Old 09-30-2020, 11:45 AM
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Win 94 has one screw holding loading gate. On post 64 guns I’ve had the spring walking out of loading gate causing load and feed problems. I’m not sure but maybe the spring was never seated properly at factory. Never had one back second time. I do believe there were 1894s made with stamped steel loading gates and there was trouble with them also. I’ve never be interested in Post 64 Wins, but the 94s for shooting purposes aren’t much different.
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Old 09-30-2020, 01:42 PM
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Quote:
Like other areas ...you can't believe everything you see on 1960's made for television TV Western's . Ever wonder how Steve McQueen in Wanted Dead or Alive got those 45-70 rounds he carried in his belt shoved into the cut down model 92 ? He Didn't ...they stayed in his belt loops it was just TV !
Correct. They were for show. The "Mare's Leg" used pistol caliber cartridges, probably .44-40s.

BTW, in case you ever wondered how Chuck Connors could shoot his M92 like a machine gun there was a set screw in the lever so when he pulled it back the screw hit the trigger to fire. He didn't have to stop "levering" to pull the trigger.

In today's cowboy action game that's not permitted, never has been, actually, but short stroke modifications, factory or otherwise, allows the really fast shooters to unload ten rounds so fast it makes the Rifleman seem somewhat tame and slow......
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Old 09-30-2020, 02:42 PM
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BTW, in case you ever wondered how Chuck Connors could shoot his M92 like a machine gun there was a set screw in the lever so when he pulled it back the screw hit the trigger to fire. He didn't have to stop "levering" to pull the trigger.
This is from a dim memory, but I seem to remember that they came up with the set screw in the lever to keep Chuck Connors from impaling his finger on the trigger.
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Old 09-30-2020, 03:24 PM
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Didn't the Winchester cap-gun rifles have an actual little metal tab that folded out to catch the trigger? Sort of a single/auto switch.
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Old 09-30-2020, 05:32 PM
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I have a 1950 Winchester Model 94 and several post-1964 Winchester Model 94s (all in 30/30).

The pre-1964 rifles have more forged parts inside, but they all load the same way. The only difference is a plus ~30%-50% $ premium for the older one.



This is a 1950 Winchester 94 in great condition:


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Old 09-30-2020, 11:06 PM
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I have a 1950 Winchester Model 94 and several post-1964 Winchester Model 94s (all in 30/30).

The pre-1964 rifles have more forged parts inside, but they all load the same way. The only difference is a plus ~30%-50% $ premium for the older one.



This is a 1950 Winchester 94 in great condition:


I have three commemorative winnies, 2 never shot .22, and one never shot 30/30 musket style, but the 1959 is a great piece, dead eye and fun to shoot, even though it appears I'm complaining about loading ( I guess in a way I am ) but fun just the same.
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Old 10-01-2020, 12:22 AM
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I have three commemorative winnies, 2 never shot .22, and one never shot 30/30 musket style, but the 1959 is a great piece, dead eye and fun to shoot, even though it appears I'm complaining about loading ( I guess in a way I am ) but fun just the same.
I have two Commemorative Model 94's that I bought for mostly the same price as today's price (the 1967 and the 1975). Both came to me with unfired with the original box. It's less than the price of an older worn Model 19.

I got one after high school, and the other 1950 for a high 3-digit price.
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Old 10-01-2020, 03:10 AM
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My three have the boxes also along with the brown paper and tags, all three are mid 70s, same as you all I want them for are hand downs to my son, but the boxes are the cool part and why they are put away for safekeeping, my old man gave me a 44/40 marlin he traded for in the 20s, also a great story and an 1892 heritage.
I have so much fun with guns and being kanadian I am so against the grain I love it.
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Old 10-02-2020, 12:30 PM
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Well - you got me wondering, so I had to go check. I recently picked up a Win. 94 that just happens to be the same age as I am. We were both launched in 1958.

I have yet to fire it, so I wasn't sure about the loading on this one, but it happily lets you load one and completely allow the gate to close, and by simply pushing down on the gate, it will allow another to load.

So I guess this one was put together "correctly".

Have a good weekend,
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Old 10-02-2020, 02:08 PM
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Winchester query, please humor me. Winchester query, please humor me. Winchester query, please humor me. Winchester query, please humor me. Winchester query, please humor me.  
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Location: BISHOP, California
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I keep a fully loaded 30-30 Model 94 with one in the chamber, hammer down, next to the night stand, with a large flashlight. Easy to grab when outside strange sounds wake me up. Loudest sound so far was when a drunk driver ran into the front porch steps. I held him in his wrecked car until the Police came and took him away.
His car insurance company and my house insurance company were the same company,,, State Farm,,, and repairs were started on my front porch the next day!
Yes, I am a retired Federal Police Officer, live in a small town in the Eastern High Sierra's in Bishop, CA. I was the District Ranger up here for many,many years.
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Old 10-02-2020, 03:10 PM
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ralph7 ralph7 is online now
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Winchester query, please humor me. Winchester query, please humor me. Winchester query, please humor me. Winchester query, please humor me. Winchester query, please humor me.  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikerjf View Post
Didn't the Winchester cap-gun rifles have an actual little metal tab that folded out to catch the trigger? Sort of a single/auto switch.
Seems like I remember that, but I'm trying to think back over 60 years ago!
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  #31  
Old 10-02-2020, 04:15 PM
bummer bummer is offline
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fyi, make sure you clean the magazine tube. My cousin had a m-94 lying on the the couch and I picked it up, he said it was unloaded put when I opened the action to verify it I saw a round stuck in the magazine tube. All I can figure was it was a cold damp day during deer season and the round hung up either from being frozen or some other debris
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