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Here’s a fact: when it comes to best-quality British doubles, a lot of the ones made after Word War II were lousy  guns. Embarrassing. Purdey, Boss, Holland — they all made clunkers then, especially from 1950-1970. For a bunch of reasons, this was not their best period.

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Many of their very best guns were made before World War I. Less expensive labor, high demand, experienced craftsman–they  had it all back then. And you can see it in the guns.

An unmessed with Holland & Holland Royal from around 1905 has “it”– that edge that puts it over the top. The same is true with Purdeys and Bosses from this period. They’re just finer, crisper guns, with a touch more of everything in them. Double barrel shotguns from this period are so nice that it’s easy to believe that their quality will never be met again. As for surpassing it, dream on.  It would be easier to find a live Dodo bird.

At least that’s what I used to think. Then a friend of mine called me. His new 28 gauge  Hartmann & Weiss over and under had just arrived. He asked me over to see it. Fantastic. Take a look at the pics and I’m sure you’ll agree.

I’m sure any London gunmaker from back before World War I would have been proud to call this gun their own. Actually, it probably would make them jealous, or even mad. After all, no one likes being beaten.

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

Hartmann & Weiss 28 gauge over-and-under shotgun

4 Responses to “It’s 1905 all over again…”

  1. Clif Watkins says:

    Very nice indeed, almost too perfect, they don’t get much better

  2. Ham says:

    Gregg – I just noticed this post. As nice as this gun looks in these excellent pics, it is ten times nicer in the flesh. It is an exquisite gun. Nice work profiling it.

  3. […] Their over-unders are built on Boss-style actions, and their side-by-sides are built on Boss , Holland & Holland and Purdey/Beesley systems. The one you see here is one of the very few self-opening, Boss-style Round Body side-by-sides Hartmann & Weiss built. It unfired, and it’s coming up in next month in  Holt’s December 2015 Fine Modern & Antique Guns Auction. […]

  4. […] out these posts to see more pics of stunning Hartmann & Weiss OUs: It’s 1905 all over again & A HARTMANN & WEISS 20g Over and Under Engraved by Alan Brown &  The English and […]

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