Jack O'Connor tribute Winchester Model 70 unveiled

GF1

Beginner
May 17, 2011
56
0
Winchester and the Jack O'Connor Hunting Heritage and Education Center have teamed up for a really special tribute rifle that will be unveiled next week at the SHOT show. The rifle will commemorate the Diamond Jubilee (75th anniversary) of the Winchester Model 70 in a fitting tribute to the man who arguably had the largest role in making it popular and the legend it is even today.

This rifle, naturally in .270 Winchester caliber, will be built in two grades and comes as close to matching Jack's famous pet "Number 2" rifle as factory production will allow.

The barrel will be a 22" Featherweight pattern, with steel floorplate (engraved with one of Jack O'Connor's sheep heads) and trigger guard with Jack's signature in nickel silver. The grip cap will be steel, with light engraving as well.

The best part of the tribute rifle will be the stock, which is patterned after the Number 2 original (Al and Roger Biesen gave the permissions to use their stock design, and Bradford O'Connor actually shipped the Number 2 rifle to Winchester to make a pattern). Even the checkering pattern will closely resemble the original. Sling swivels will be of the Super Grade style; a black fore end tip will be on both grades.

The big difference in the grades will be the wood quality. The standard grade ("standard" is probably a disservice to a factory rifle of this quality) will feature figured wood with a rubber recoil pad, while the deluxe version will be dressed up with fancier wood and a Neidner-type blued steel buttplate, the same pattern as found on the pre-64 Model 70 standard rifles.

Here's an initial announcement from Winchester:

JOCTributeRifle2012SHOT.png


Here is some of the prototype hardware (the small rendition here doesn't do the sheep engraving justice; a larger picture of it looks great):

floorplate.jpg


gripcap.jpg


Pricing has yet to be made final, but expect retail to be under $1,500 for the standard grade to around $2,000 for the deluxe. The Jack O'Connor center will get a cut for each rifle sold. Winchester says the rifles should hit dealer shelves in late spring 2012.

Kudos to many folks for making this project happen, not the least of which should go to Bradford O'Connor for his personal involvement and commitment as well as Glenn Hatt of Winchester for pushing the project through the corporate end.

Bradford has contacted a number of our modern day scribes about this rifle, and expects lots of interest and press from the SHOT show next week.

So, Jack O'Connor fans, time to start squirrelling away the pennies for one of these rifles; they will be special.

Here is a link to the Jack O'Connor center in Lewiston, Idaho:

http://jack-oconnor.org/
 

DrMike

Ballistician
Nov 8, 2006
34,811
959
That is a very neat tribute to O'Connor. I'm certain it will appeal to many people and help support a worthy cause. Thanks for posting.
 

SJB358

Ballistician
Dec 24, 2006
31,254
419
Very nice rifle! I imagine that'll sell. That is just about as classic as it gets.
 

Guy Miner

Master Loader
Apr 6, 2006
16,464
727
Very nice. Obviously they'll get buyers, but I think it's great that Winchester is paying Jack back a bit for all the great press they got from him over his decades of writing. Jack O'Connor and the Model 70 Winchester just go together.

That's a beautiful rifle.

Yeah, I'd hunt it...
 

35 Whelen

Handloader
Dec 22, 2011
2,072
0
:roll: Wow that means all things other being equal, then to stamp that floorplate with that engraving pattern and the triggerguard with a signature is going to cost a grand more than the same gun does without it.....................

The whole idea of the 75th anniversary model with Jack O Conner is a nice idea and a great tribute and would be cool but not to sure about those prices ??
 

BK

Handloader
Dec 14, 2008
4,045
0
Not really. The wood is supposed to be better than SG wood, and that's usually a $1k rifle. I suppose the extra adornment has to be paid for too, but it's a limited edition thing, and they don't just give away the bonus features for nothing. If you don't like it that's fine, but there's a bunch of Jack O'Connor fans, and a bunch of M70 fans, and I doubt Winchester will have much problem selling them.
 

SJB358

Ballistician
Dec 24, 2006
31,254
419
DrMike":1zygmzr5 said:
Jeez, Scotty, you're killing me. I'm not made of money!

I don't suppose there is a chance that you'd sell off one of your current holdings?

I'm not sure what I'd get rid of, but you don't need all your organs, right?
 

Oldtrader3

Ammo Smith
Nov 6, 2009
8,406
1
Very nice commemorative rifle and it makes me wonder how much the damage in going to be in order to buy one one. Looks as though it will be a beautiful rifle.
 

35 Whelen

Handloader
Dec 22, 2011
2,072
0
Now that is a great idea Scott, they could inscribe on the floorplate "hell I was there"............
 

Oldtrader3

Ammo Smith
Nov 6, 2009
8,406
1
I already am missing one ear (deafess), one kidney, part of a lung and one testicle. That does no leave me many disposable organ options for too many trades.. I am pretty sure: "if I have to ask, I can not afford one"! This does not leave me many options except finding out what they will cost.
 
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