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Books. Chairs. Cabinet counters. My wife’s toes.

These are all things our new pup Lexi loves to chew on. We’re on day six with her, and so far Lexi is sleeping through the night, and we’re not having any messes in her crate or in the house. The chewing and the nipping is a bit of an issue, but I’m sure it will resolve itself soon.

For all you out there who’ve raised a pup before:  What tips and advice do you have for us? What did you do right? And what do you wish you had done differently? Please let us know.

Lexi loving the sun and clover in the back yard.

Lexi loving the sun and clover in the back yard.

Lexi loving the sun and clover in the back yard.

Lexi loving the sun and clover in the back yard.

20 gauge Orvis Upland Beretta 686 Over Under Shotgun, 28" barrels

20 gauge Orvis Upland Beretta 686 Over Under Shotgun, 28″ barrels

I love Beretta’s 686 Black Onyx O/Us . Close your eyes and put a 686 to your shoulder; swap it for a Boss O/U and do the same. The differences are slight. Believe me, I’ve done it many times.

But even though 686s feel great, they do have a weak spot: the wood.  Plywood is more exciting to look it. So when Orvis developed their Uplander version of the 686, what did they do? They stocked them in fine walnut. Then they jacked up the price.

New, these I don’t think Orvis’s Uplanders were worth the money. But used, they can be good deals.  If you can get  this 20g Orvis Uplander for $2999, you will have paid a fair price for an awesome gun. Here’s more about this O/U from the seller. This gun is on Gunbroker.com now, and the listing ends 7/13/2014 @ 3:16:17 PM ET.

Orvis Upland/ Beretta 686 Black Onyx Double Barrel, O.U Shotgun: 20 ga., engraved boxlock action with sideplates, 28 in. VR barrels with choke tubes, SST, straight grip, select American black walnut with 24 LPI checkering, leather covered recoil pad, 6-7 lbs. Mfg. by P. Beretta of Italy. This shotgun is in excellent shape with no scratches or dents anywhere. The barrel looks like it hasn’t had any rounds through it. If you are looking for a premier shotgun this one would be it for you.

20 gauge Orvis Upland Beretta 686 Over Under Shotgun, 28" barrels

20 gauge Orvis Upland Beretta 686 Over Under Shotgun, 28″ barrels

20 gauge Orvis Upland Beretta 686 Over Under Shotgun, 28" barrels

20 gauge Orvis Upland Beretta 686 Over Under Shotgun, 28″ barrels

20 gauge Orvis Upland Beretta 686 Over Under Shotgun, 28" barrels

20 gauge Orvis Upland Beretta 686 Over Under Shotgun, 28″ barrels

Old ad for Beretta's BL-grade over-under shotguns

Old ad for Beretta’s BL-grade over-under shotguns

Thanks to the folks at Beretta, upland hunters don’t have to spend a ton of money to get a nice double. This BL-4 is all the shotgun you need for grouse or woodcock, and even though it shares some similarities with the world’s most expensive O/U, it’s a heck a lock cheaper.

Beretta introduced their BL boxlock O/Us in the 1960s. They came in BL-1 to BL-5s, and they were priced to be values – not cheap guns, but well made guns at reasonable prices. Today, they’re pretty much steals. I know some guys will sniff at this one because of it’s 26″ bbls. They want 28″ or 30″ tubes. But I don’t see how 2″ or 4″ of pipe makes much of differences in  upland covers. If you’re missing, it’s probably more you than the gun that’s the problem.

Here’s more about this shotgun. It’s on Gunbroker.com now, and the listing ends Monday @ 6:30:22 PM ET. If you like what you see, get on it now.

Beretta BL-4 .20 Gauge Shotgun, 26″ barrels: This has Modified Choke and Improved cylinder Choke. This gun is in very good shape. There is some light fading of the bluing on the end of the barrel. There is also some small handling marks on the butt of the gun. The Fore grip is in excellent condition with no handling marks.

20 gauge Beretta BL-4 Over Under Double Barrel Shotgun

20 gauge Beretta BL-4 Over Under Double Barrel Shotgun

20 gauge Beretta BL-4 Over Under Double Barrel Shotgun

20 gauge Beretta BL-4 Over Under Double Barrel Shotgun

20 gauge Beretta BL-4 Over Under Double Barrel Shotgun

20 gauge Beretta BL-4 Over Under Double Barrel Shotgun

20 gauge Beretta BL-4 Over Under Double Barrel Shotgun

20 gauge Beretta BL-4 Over Under Double Barrel Shotgun

Introducing Lexi…

I’m finally back from my fishing trip and some other travels. This past week has been especially busy: I started a new job on Monday and on Thursday this little bundle arrived.

Her name is Lexi. She’s out of Superior Pointers in Bayfield, WI. She’s a fantastic pup, and my wife and I are thrilled with her. As you can see in this video, she’s as wild and mischievous as you would expect a 9-week old pup to be: Lexi, English Pointer, Superior Pointers

Lexi, English Pointer, Superior Pointers

Lexi, English Pointer, Superior Pointers

Lexi, English Pointer, Superior Pointers

Lexi, English Pointer, Superior Pointers

Lexi, English Pointer, Superior Pointers

Lexi, English Pointer, Superior Pointers

Going fishing…

Be back on 6/30

Be back on 6/30

I’ll be away fishing until 6/30. Wish me luck – I’m hoping to break by record for a brook trout. Pics will follow. Any new pup arrives 7/3!

Here’s a great deal on a great grouse gun. You can spend a lot more on an O/U and get a lot less gun.

Beretta 686 Onyx 20ga/28″ Multichoke (USED)-- Factory original and in good condition overall with only light handling. This gun has a satin blue finish and satin finished walnut stock with factory installed choke tubes. Price: $1,395

Beretta 686 Onyx 20ga/28" Multichoke

Beretta 686 Onyx 20ga/28″ Multichoke

Beretta 686 Onyx 20ga/28" Multichoke

Beretta 686 Onyx 20ga/28″ Multichoke

Beretta 686 Onyx 20ga/28" Multichoke

Beretta 686 Onyx 20ga/28″ Multichoke

Beretta 686 Onyx 20ga/28" Multichoke

Beretta 686 Onyx 20ga/28″ Multichoke

Even though the doubles you see here don’t look related, they share a feature that makes them cousins, or maybe even step brothers.

This feature is the rotary-fastening top bolt. The rotary-fastening top bolt was invented by Alexander T. Brown in 1883. A year later it found its first use on the side-by-side shotguns made built by a company owned by Lyman Cornelius Smith. The guns built by A.H Fox used a similar rotary-fastening top bolt, although the rest of Ansley’s shotguns are much different.

I’ve always like L.C. Smiths. I think they’re  just as nice as Foxes — especially LCs like the 16 gauge below.

LC Smith 16 GA, grade 2E SxS Shotgun

LC Smith 16 GA, grade 2E SxS Shotgun

LC Smith 16 GA, grade 2E SxS Shotgun: 28″ barrels that are choked full right and full left. Both bores are .661. Barrels are 80-85% original blue. Checkering is sharp and un-damaged. Engraving is sharp and clear, original case color remains at about 20% or so. The gun has great ejectors. Capped pistol grip stock with splinter fore-end. LOP is 14 1/2″ to a 1-1/4″ Whiteline pad. DAC 1 3/4, DAH 2 1/2. It has a 3 position safety. Manufactured in 1906. Price: $2,950

This 20g Fox CE is a hard gun to find. Fox made just 413 C-grades in 20 gauge. The first one (CE #200,011) left the factory on September 17, 1912 . This one was built 11 years later in 1923. While its price seems high, it’s not crazy. A minty, original one  like this is worth $18,000+.

A.H. Fox CE Grade 20ga Double Barrel Shotgun

A.H. Fox CE Grade 20ga Double Barrel Shotgun

A.H. Fox CE Grade 20ga Double Barrel Shotgun: 26″ barrels with Improved Cylinder & Modified chokes. Ejectors, single trigger, 14-3/8″ LOP, 5-3/4 pounds. Serial number 202010, 85% original barrel blue, outstanding wood & receiver with crisp engraving. Tight action, mint bores, a very nice high grade Fox 20ga. Price $11,950

Lefever HE 16E gauge Side-by-Side Shotgun

Lefever HE 16E gauge Side-by-Side Shotgun

I used to be hot for Lefevers – especially ones in 16 gauge.  I owned three F-grades 16s at one point, including one that was practically new.

These days, my passion for Uncle Dan’s doubles has cooled a bit. But I have to say, the Lefever you see here does get my heart pumping. Its sleek looks reminds me why I fell in love with these guns. If the stock was a bit longer, I’d be on the phone right now trying to cut a deal.

Lefever HE 16E gauge Side-by-Side Shotgun: Fine condition LOP: 13-3/4″ Drop: 2-1/4″ – 1-1/2″ Cast: 1/4″on Barrel length: 28″ Choke: rt:IC/lt:F (light) Weight: 6lb, 13oz 1913 HE in fine condition, side plates have 99% original case color, frame 70% color, very nice Damascus pattern with very good bores, very minor pitting, barrel wall thickness .040+ both barrels, 2-1/2″ chambers, ser#677–. Price: $3,000

Lefever HE 16E gauge Side-by-Side Shotgun

Lefever HE 16E gauge Side-by-Side Shotgun

Lefever HE 16E gauge Side-by-Side Shotgun

Lefever HE 16E gauge Side-by-Side Shotgun

New pics of the pups…

Here are the latest pics of the pups. These were taking on June 8th. These pups are from Superior Pointers in Bayfield, WI, and they’re just about over 5 weeks old. We’re going with the orange one. Her name will be Lexey.

Superior Pointer Pups from Rex X Haley, Spring 2014

Superior Pointer Pups from Rex X Haley, Spring 2014

Superior Pointer Pups from Rex X Haley, Spring 2014

Superior Pointer Pups from Rex X Haley, Spring 2014

Superior Pointer Pups from Rex X Haley, Spring 2014

Superior Pointer Pups from Rex X Haley, Spring 2014

Superior Pointer Pups from Rex X Haley, Spring 2014

Superior Pointer Pups from Rex X Haley, Spring 2014

Browning BSS Sidelock, 12 ga. Side by Side Shotgun:

Browning BSS Sidelock, 12 ga. Side by Side Shotgun

Here’s your chance to get a deal on a great double. This 12 gauge Browning BSS sidelock is on Gunrunnerauctions.com now. The listing ends tomorrow, 06/12/14 @ 19:00.

Browning had these sidelock BSSs made for them by Miroku from 1983-1987. Even though they were well made, they weren’t big sellers. Today, they have a bit of following among some very knowledgeable people like gunsmith James Flynn (find out why). Twelve-gauges with 28″ barrels usually sell for around $4500-$5000, (this one is $4999). So if  you can get this one for $3500 or less, you’ll get a good deal.

Browning BSS Sidelock, 12 ga. Side by Side Shotgun:  Serial #01001PW918, mfg. 1984 in Japan by Miroku. Excellent, like new condition. Perhaps test-fired – action is very tight and no apparent wear. Super nice and clean! Hard to find item that was only produced for a few years by Browning. Long discontinued (since 1988) and long mourned, these Sidelocks represented the best Browning side by sides and were a whole different upgraded animal when compared to the Grade One box-lock BSS’s as they had a straight grip English walnut upgraded stock with hand checkering, coin-finished engraved sideplates/all metal frame areas, checkered butts, double triggers and ejectors. This specimen is a dandy deluxe with nicely figured wood (one tiny impression on right side), 28″ solid rib barrel, M/F fixed chokes and steel front bead. Profusely scroll engraved on all three receiver sides, triggerguard, top lever and top tang – very pleasing looking. Splinter forearm with hand checkering. All matching iron. 2 3/4″ chambers. Bright bores. Fitted in a Browning brown hard case with brown interior – just one small tear on the top lid for wear.

Browning BSS Sidelock, 12 ga. Side by Side Shotgun:

Browning BSS Sidelock, 12 ga. Side by Side Shotgun

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