The Legendary Rifle: A Closer Look

Lucas protected the town of North Fork with what was "in actuality" a model 1892 Winchester carbine. It was fitted with a large loop lever that enabled it to be spun and cocked in a dramatic fashion. The triggerguard incorporated a screw that could be set to trip the trigger every time the lever was closed, thus firing the gun. This was the secret to its rapid-firing technique. There were three carbines used in the show: a primary Winchester, another identical gun for backup, and a third version that was made from an El Tigre, a Spanish copy of the 1892 Winchester. The El Tigre was the gun usually carried in a saddle scabbard and used for rough work where a close-up wasn't involved. There were also two other loop lever Winchester 92 carbines that were used by Chuck in later years during his personal appearances. Today all four Winchester carbines are in private collections, while the whereabouts of the El Tigre is unknown. The program would open with Chuck rapid-firing eleven shots as he walked down the street of North Fork. Actually, he only fired ten shots; the eleventh had to be dubbed in to time out with the music. (Guns and Ammo magazine, 1995 annual edition.) For the kid who never grew up there's a replica rifle available just like the one Chuck Connors used.

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