Ian is at it again over at Forgotten Weapons. This time, he’s hitting us with knowledge and history of lever-action Winchester 1895 bolt-action rifles manufactured for the Russians in World War I.
At the onset of World War I, the Russians were, per Ian, “woefully unequipped”. Recognizing this as a weakness, the Russians immediately ramped up production of their Mosin Nagant rifles (of which millions were made), but getting the rifle into full production was going to take a year or more.
To cover the gap, the Russians contracted the Winchester company to provide their latest Model 1895, a lever-action rifle, which was supposed to be pressed through production within a month. However, due to various wartime logistics, design, and bureaucratic issues the rifles took almost half a year to first delivery. After production was running, over 300,000 were successfully delivered to the Russians (though some did sink to the bottom of the ocean prior to making to Russia).
Despite this, the 1895 was a battlefield success. Unlike previous lever-action rifles which relied on round-nose bullets and a tubular magazine, the 1895 used a stripper-clip fed box magazines that allowed the use of spitzer bullets
The full video is below with all the juicy details. Warning, its 17 minutes long and Ian is as captivating as always.