Hello everyone. I am trying to restore a beat down 5.7 mil Winchester Carbine I got from CMP about 7 years ago. Had a very rough looking Underwood marked stock and hand guard was a four rivet. I ended up getting a very nice Winchester low wood stock and a few different hand guards. The Winchester marked one looks different than all the others I got. Itís not tapered at the front. The other one I have is unmarked and tapered like all the others I have seen. Both are two rivets. Which would be correct for a 1944 Winchester? Also I found a correct type 3 M marked magazine catch. It is inland marked. Is there a place I can find a W or EW marked catch?
It sounds like you have an early Winchester Bull Nose hand guard. These were used in 1943. Winchester later went to a more tapered hand guard similar to the other makers. Winchester went with the four rivet hand guard around the 5.8 million mark so if your serial number is in the 5.78 or 5.79 range then the four rivet version is what you may use as it's close to the change over point. But if less serial number wise then a standard two rivet is good. The rear sight appears to be correct for your serial number. The barrel band is correct. Did you change it out from a type 3 with the bayonet lug? The magazine release is the right time frame but if it's marked for Inland then you would need to replace it with a Winchester marked on. Check on Ebay, Gun Broker and some of the on line part sellers for the correct magazine release. Should not be too hard to find. The pouch on the stock is a reproduction and to be honest it doesn't look all that great. Do a little checking around and you can find an original that will work out better for you. I should also say if your looking for parts stay away from the seller out on the left coast. Lots of fake parts there.
The only time I would expect to see two proof marks are when a barrel was supplied by the Government Free Issue Barrel program. They would be marked by their original manufacturer and then again when the assembled carbine was tested. I guess if Winchester supplied pre-tested barrels to themselves through this program, perhaps this would necessitate marking their barrels twice. This may be a rare occurrence unless someone has another explanation. Perhaps reusing a barrel from a rejected carbine during manufacture? Any comments?
No not really. There were times a carbine had to be proof fired twice. If the carbine failed a function testing or turned out to have a bad receiver it was again fired and stamped on a new receiver. Rejected barrels were fixed if possible and then used. Then again proof fired and stamped. But as Jack said it could have been a case of being sent to another carbine maker BUT if the barrel isn't dated then the odds go down on this happening as Winchester was ramping up their carbine production. Winchester didn't contribute many barrels to the free issue program compared to others.
They were never made as a stock pouch. That was good old USGI thinking. The quality of the pouch in that it feels like it's heavier, the construction is stronger and it fits on a stock better and doesn't look like it has to go on a diet. lol.