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The Winchester Model 88 was an American magazine-fed lever-action rifle produced by the Winchester Repeating Arms Company from 1955 to 1973. A modern lever-action rifle design, the Model 88 was Winchester's first new lever-action design in over eighty years.


The Model 88 was introduced in 1955 alongside the Model 77 semi-automatic sporting rifle as "centennial models" of sorts (it was Winchester's 100th anniversary that year). Featuring "Centennial Styling",[1] the Model 88 was advertised alongside the then-new .308 Winchester cartridge[2] as "the world's first and only lever-action hunting rifle with target rifle accuracy" that was capable of downing medium game.[3]

The Model 88 was fairly commercially successful, although the weapon's high cost compared to the famed Model 94 eventually caused sales to slump, with the weapon discontinued in 1973. Some 283,879 were produced.[4]

Design Details[]

The Model 88 was Winchester's first new lever-action design after some eighty years. While most Winchester rifles used two sliding wedges to operate the action, the Model 88 incorporated a short-throw lever action with a three-lug rotating bolt. The bolt locks up just behind the chamber.[4] It is because of this action that allows the Model 88 to chamber high-powered modern spitzer cartridges.

The Model 88 is also capable of mounting scopes.


The Model 88 was chambered in .308 Winchester at launch.[4] Three other cartridges, .243 Winchester, .284 Winchester and .358 Winchester, joined the caliber choices in the coming years.[2]


Rifle and carbine variants are known to exist.[2]