Offered for sale is a very early Winchester 1886 octagon rifle manufactured during the first three years of production in the rare and desirable .40-65 caliber, low serial number 54168, made 1889. A scarce and desirable western big game chambering in the Model 1886, the .40-65 cartridge was considered a powerful, flat-shooting round based on the long .45-90 cartridge. John Browning designed the big Model 1886 to be the strongest and most potent lever action rifle of the day. The standard and correct 26” octagon barrel with full magazine tube shows a deep and rich aged blue finish and retains excellent Winchester markings that include: “MANUFACTURED BY THE WINCHESTER REPEATING ARMS CO., NEW HAVEN, CONN. U.S.A.” The upper tang is marked with the earliest model designation and states simply, “MODEL 1886.” The receiver case colors have faded to an uncleaned gray/brown appearance. The action is fully functional and tight. Even the bore is surprisingly bright and fine with good rifling all the way through. Further, this early 1886 is fitted with a buckhorn rear sight with elevator bar intact and a small dovetailed front sight. The top of the octagon barrel ahead of the receiver is correctly stamped with the caliber designation “40-65.” The 1886 in .40-65 chambering was very popular in the American West where it was considered a powerful enough cartridge for the largest game encountered plus having the advantage of being flat shooting enough for long shots at distant targets. This is an early and seriously powerful frontier rifle in very good and uncleaned condition. This firearm qualifies as an Antique, and does not require FFL Transfer or NICS Background Check.