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Winchester Production to End?


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It's all well-known industry gamesmanship involving Olin and USRAC.


Winchester semi-auto shotguns have not been 'made' anywhere for many years, just parts put together and sent to Winchester USA's warehouse.


Many long guns will be made at a new facility in Japan.


mudhen - CA

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I doubt that "foreign" ownership has anything to do with it. After all, Winchester was owned by Olin Corporation in 1964 when Winchester destroyed its quality & reputation. The quality of Winchester Model 70's and 94's remained subpar from 1964 until the early 90's. In that time Remington came to dominate the boltgun market and Marlin took over the levergun market. Based on what I see locally Remington still dominates the boltgun market. Very few deer hunters apparently want a lever gun any more but those that do buy Marlins based on what I see locally. I see very few Winchester anythings offered for sale locally. Winchester apparently has a very small market share of a declining market.

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For all of you Winchester lovers out there who are concerned about the news of U.S. Repeating Arms Company, makers of Winchester rifles and shotguns closing the doors on its New Haven, CT facility, please let me clarify a few things.


After a decade of attempts to make the facility profitable, the owners have made a financial decision to stop the hemorrhaging. This means that not only will the doors close at New Haven, but along with that, two icons of American firearms history will go away. The legendary Model 94 and Model 70 rifles along with the 1300 pump shotgun will be discontinued with no plans in place to continue manufacturing of these models anywhere else in the world, period.

Just received from the flanigan site. Hate to see the 94 go away.

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As much as I admire Patrick and his amazing talents, he is in no position to make an official statement on behalf of Winchester unless said statement is posted on Winchester's official website and offically sponsored by Winchester.


I see no official press release on Winchester's website as of today. I will check everyday for updates.


The industry has been buzzing a bit as to where the Model 70 & 94 production will end up. It is pretty widely accepted that the Model 1300 is done.


First heard was China, then Japan, now Russia has entered into the fray.


Only the future will tell...


mudhen - CA

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NEW HAVEN, Conn. – U.S. Repeating Arms Co. Inc. said Tuesday it will close its Winchester firearm factory, threatening the future of a rifle that was once called "The Gun that Won the West."


"It's part of who we are as a nation just like it's part of who we are as a city," Mayor John DeStefano said.



The announcement touched off a lobbying effort by city officials and union leaders who hoped to find a buyer for the plant before it closes March 31. If no buyer comes forward, it could spell the end for nearly all commercially produced Winchesters, said Everett Corey, a representative of the International Association of Machinists District 26.


"Winchester would be pretty much defunct," he said. "They're not going to produce them, other than a couple custom-type models."


The company has been plagued by slumping firearm sales. More than 19,000 people worked there during World War II, but the plant employs fewer than 200 now.


The Winchester model 1873 lever action rifle was popular among American frontiersmen at the end of the 19th century for its reliability. John Wayne made the Winchester rifle a signature of his movies and Chuck Connors posed menacingly with his Winchester on the poster for the television series "The Rifleman."


"Marlin made lever-action rifles but nobody ever had a Marlin in films or TV series. They were always Winchesters," said Ned Schwing, a firearms historian.


Perhaps the company's greatest unofficial spokesman was President Teddy Roosevelt, who used the 1895 model on his famous 1909 African safari, which historians credited with boosting the sale of Winchester sporting rifles.


Since the plant opened in 1866, tens of millions of Winchester rifles have been produced, the bulk of which came between the late 1800s and the end of World War II, said firearms historian R.L. Wilson, who has written books about Winchester. More than six million copies of the Winchester Model 94, the company's most popular rifle, have been produced.


"Several generations have worked at this place, a lot of fathers and brothers, sons, uncles and daughters," said Paul DeMennato, facility director at U.S. Repeating Arms.


U.S. Repeating Arms, which is owned by the Herstal Group, a Belgium company, has said for years that it was on the brink of closing the plant.


DeMennato said the company is negotiating the plant's sale. Missouri-based Olin Corp. owns the Winchester brand name. In the late 1970s, after a massive strike by its machinists, Olin sold the plant to U.S. Repeating Arms along with the right to use the Winchester name until next year.


Olin had no immediate word on its plans for the Winchester name. DeMennato said he hopes the name will be sold along with the plant. Nobody at Herstal's headquarters in Belgium could be reached Tuesday afternoon


(I just saw this.)

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