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Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: In the Woods Pa
Re: Winchester mod.71
From the first manufacture of the new M71 in late 1935 through late (September) 1937, the Model 71 was the "long tang, short comb" model. serial number 1 through approx. 12,500. However, some long tangs were made/sold as late as serial number17,000 (approx. 1939) until the parts inventory was used up. The Tang length is: 3 7/8" long.
Post-September, 1937 the Model 71'sshould have the "short tang, long comb" and the tang is 1" shorter, 2 7/8” long.
My understanding was that the Winchester people wanted to strengthen the stock. Figuring the cost of the changes to the forgings, etc Winchester must have been getting a sizable number of complaints/returns for stock cracks.