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Color-case hardened SO-5 Sporting Over Under 12 gauge Shotgun

Color-case hardened SO-5 Sporting Over Under 12 gauge Shotgun

Beretta’s SO-series over-and-unders are one of the world’s great shotguns. They’re also one of the most influential doubles of the 20th century. Introduced around 1935, the sidelock SO was built by Beretta’s as their answer to Browning’s new Superposeds.

Tullio Marengoni, Beretta’s famous in-house firearms designer, considered Browning’s O/U “..very high, heavy and ugly.” He set about to create an over-and-under that was more like a Boss or Woodward, but that could also be mass produced in a factory like Beretta’s.

Color-case hardened SO-5 Sporting Over Under 12 gauge Shotgun

Color-case hardened SO-5 Sporting Over Under 12 gauge Shotgun

Beretta has also made a lot of SO-series shotguns, so finding a decent one is not that hard. What is hard to find is a decent one that has been color case hardened. like the SO-5 you see here. Here’s the seller’s description of the gun:

BERETTA S05 SPORTING 12 GAUGE: HARD TO FIND CASE COLORED FRAME 29 1/2″ VENT RIB 2 3/4 WITH COLONIAL SCREW CHOKES SINGLE SELECT TRIGGER EJECTORS FIELD FOREARM PISTOL GRIP EXCELLENT CONDITION IN MAKERS CASE 7LB 14 OZ X 2 1/4 X 1 1/2 X 14 1/2. Price: $12,900.00

Color-case hardened SO-5 Sporting Over Under 12 gauge Shotgun

Color-case hardened SO-5 Sporting Over Under 12 gauge Shotgun

Color-case hardened SO-5 Sporting Over Under 12 gauge Shotgun

Color-case hardened SO-5 Sporting Over Under 12 gauge Shotgun

In 1875, Westley Richards started building side-by-side shotguns on their famous Anson & Deeley boxlock action. Twenty-one year later, the company updated the A & D design with the famous Detachable Lock Action. Check out the pics below to see some of what sets these designs apart.

This first pic shows a regular Westley Richards Anson & Deeley boxlock action. Note the three pins  on the side of the action. Those pins fasten the lockwork in place.

A standard boxlock Westley Richards

A standard boxlock Westley Richards

The next pic shows a Westley Richards droplock. See how the the three pins on those three pins are missing on this gun? That’s because the detachable lockwork on this Westley is fastened on plates housed inside the action.

A droplock Westley Richards

A droplock Westley Richards, pic from Hallowellco.com

Here’s another pic of a standard Westley boxlock. Even though this shotgun is equipped with a hinged floor plate, it’s a fixed-lock gun.

Locks & action on a standard boxlock Westley Richards

Locks & action on a standard boxlock Westley Richards

This is a droplock with the floorplate removed and the left-had lock lifted from the action. See the plate to the back of the lock? That’s what the lockwork is mounted on.

Locks on a Westley Richards Droplock

Locks on a Westley Richards Droplock, pic from Hallowellco.com

In this final pic you can see the set of the locks dropped all the way out of the gun. You can also the plate that entire lock mechanism is mounted on.

Westley Richards Boxlock with Detachable Locks (Droplocks)

Westley Richards Boxlock with Detachable Locks (Droplocks)

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

Daniel Myron Lefever was one of the geniuses of American gunmaking. Born in 1835, he started making firearms under his own name in 1857. Fifteen years later he was working with machinist Francis Dangerfield. Together they patented a doll’s head, thumb lift locking mechanism for breechloading shotguns.

In 1883, Lefever used part of this design on his new barrel-cocking hammerless shotgun, the first of its kind created in the US. The 16 gauge Lefever Arms Co. E grade you see here is built on those two patents. Made around 1886, it’s one of the first sixteens that the Lefever Arms Co. produced. From what I can see, it looks like it’s in pretty original condition. The only issue I can see with it is with the bbls: They’re short (26″) and possibly cut. Other than that, this125+ years old side-by-side looks like it in excellent shape.

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

16 gauge Lefever E-grade Thumb Lifter Shotgun

 

Check out this good introduction to the sport of shooting driven grouse. A lot goes into making it happen: time, effort, and especially money. About 2/3rds of the way through there’s a guy named Simon Ward using an O/U that looks like a Perazzi. He guy can shoot — and I love how he uses his loader. So much for tradition.

If I had to pick one double for all my bird hunting, it would this 12 gauge Beretta/ Cole Custom 686 Onyx Over Under. With 28″ barrels, screw-in choke tubes, and double triggers, it could do it all from grouse in Maine to pheasants in the Dakotas.

12 gauge Beretta/ Cole Custom 686 Onyx O/U shotgun

12 gauge Beretta/ Cole Custom 686 Onyx O/U shotgun

Cole Gunsmithing in Harpswell, ME, has been turning out custom Beretta O/Us for a while now. If you went to them and ordered one like this today, it would probably run you $3,500- $4,000. That means this one is a pretty good deal at
$2,795.

12 gauge Beretta/ Cole Custom 686 Onyx O/U shotgun

12 gauge Beretta/ Cole Custom 686 Onyx O/U shotgun

12 gauge Beretta/ Cole Custom 686 Onyx O/U shotgun

12 gauge Beretta/ Cole Custom 686 Onyx O/U shotgun

 

Holland & Holland .500BPE Double Rifle

Holland & Holland .500BPE Double Rifle

HOLLAND & HOLLAND DOUBLE HAMMER RIFLE .500 3 1/4″: 27″ steel barrels, ramp front sight with folding night sight. Two leaf rear express sight. Lightly engraved back action locks and rebounding hammers. Stock dimensions LOP: 14 1/2″ Comb: 1 1/2″ Heel: 2 1/4″ Weight: 9lbs 2oz. Super untouched original barrel blue. The action and locks are lightly engraved and retain areas of casehardening with the remainder fading to a pleasing mottled gray. Mint bores and tight action. Beautiful wood and checkering. Left side of the receiver engraved “CHARGE 5 DRAMS, CASE 3 1/4 INCHES”. Price: 12,500

12 gauge A.H. Fox XE grade Double Barrel Shotgun

12 gauge A.H. Fox XE grade Double Barrel Shotgun

1916 Ansley H. Fox XE Grade 12ga: Serial # 23670, Made in 1916, Philadelphia, PA. This gun is in +95% Condition. Hand Engraving. This gun is a fine piece of American craftsmanship. This gun has been shot very little. 2 5/8” chambers, 28” bbls, Full & Mod, Chromox steel, #4 weight, 13 ¾” X 1 5/8” x 2 ¾”, 6lbs 13oz. Price: $11,995.00

12 gauge Churchill Double Barrel. Side-by-Side Shotgun

12 gauge Churchill Double Barrel. Side-by-Side Shotgun

CHURCHILL REGAL XXV ORIGINAL CASE: 12g Boxlock Ejectors: Nice original cased Churchill XXV Regal. 25” bbls. This Churchill is in very good condition and with a 59xx serial number is an early 30’s gun. Nice dimensions on a straight grip DAC 1 ½ X DAH 2 ¼ X LOP 14 to end of pad, with a 5/8 cast off for a right handed shooter. 6lbs. Priced to sell $3975.00.

16 gauge D.M. Lefever, #7 Grade, Double Barrel Shotgun

16 gauge D.M. Lefever, #7 Grade, Double Barrel Shotgun

DM LEFEVER #7 GRADE 16 GAUGE: 28″ MOD AND FULL 2 3/4 SINGLE SELECT TRIIGGER EJECTORS SPLINTER FOREARM PISTOL GRIP EXCELLENT CONDITION THE WOOD IS PROFESSIONALLY REFINISHED 6LB 6 OZ X 2 1/2 X 1 3/4 X 13 FROM REAR SINGLE TRIGGER. Price: $7,500.00

16 gauge Darne Halifax Double Barrel Shotgun

16 gauge Darne Halifax Double Barrel Shotgun

Darne Halifax 16 Gauge: Retains most of the case color on the action with blue in similar condition. 25 ½” bbls, 2 ½” chambers, double triggers, straight stock, 14 1/8″ LOP. 1 3/4″ DAC. 2 5/8″ DAH. 1/4″ cast on (for left-handed shooter), Price: $1,499.99

 

 

12 gauge Lefever Arms Co. Presentation Grade SxS double barrel shotgun

12 gauge Lefever Arms Co. Presentation Grade SxS double barrel shotgun

Factory records are great ways to double check the original specs on a vintage shotgun, and referring to these records is a must do if you’re thinking about buying any big-money double. Fortunately, collector’s clubs make it easy to check the records on doubles like L.C. Smiths, Parkers, Foxes. But if you’re into Lefevers, you’re out of luck. Those factory records disappeared years ago.

So what do you when you see a Lefever like this? The seller is calling it a “Presentation” grade gun. It certainly is beautiful. But is it legit? Without the maker’s records to check the serial number against, it’s hard to say.

12 gauge Lefever Arms Co. Presentation Grade SxS double barrel shotgun

12 gauge Lefever Arms Co. Presentation Grade SxS double barrel shotgun

Lefever Arms Co. never made an official “Presentation” grade shotgun, so there are no others to compare this one to. This shotgun may have been a special order or a one-off made for an exhibition. The Lefever Arms Co. did make special order guns, and if you had the dough, Uncle Dan would make it. And a lot of companies made up extra ornate guns for events like world fairs and international expos. So it’s possible that this Lefever was made at the factory and is 100% right on.

12 gauge Lefever Arms Co. Presentation Grade SxS double barrel shotgun

12 gauge Lefever Arms Co. Presentation Grade SxS double barrel shotgun

But it’s also possible that this shotgun is an upgrade, made well after the Lefever Arms Co. went out of business. If that’s the case, whoever did the work was an absolute master. Just check out how nice the carving and gold inlays are on the action. The stock is well done, too.

Whatever the case is with this side by side, it sure it’s a nice looking Lefever.

Here’s more about it from the seller:

Lefever, Presentation, 12ga, 30” barrel, choked M/F: Lefever Arms company. Double trigger, gold washed triggers. Straight grip, AE, Krupp steel barrels, splinter forend, step lock plates, sculptured barrels. We have handled $1000 grade and Uncle Dan grade, but in our opinion we feel this is the most ornate Lefever to come to market. Multiple raised and flat gold inlays, all surrounded with oak leaf engraving. The very finest checkering that we have ever seen performed on a gun. Old ventilated pad, majority of case color remaining. The very finest ever offered. For pricing please e-mail inquiry.

12 gauge Lefever Arms Co. Presentation Grade SxS double barrel shotgun

12 gauge Lefever Arms Co. Presentation Grade SxS double barrel shotgun

 

12 gauge Lefever Arms Co. Presentation Grade SxS double barrel shotgun

12 gauge Lefever Arms Co. Presentation Grade SxS double barrel shotgun

12 gauge Lefever Arms Co. Presentation Grade SxS double barrel shotgun

12 gauge Lefever Arms Co. Presentation Grade SxS double barrel shotgun

 

Portugese Pointer, from Craig Koshyk

Portugese Pointer, from Craig Koshyk

The Portugese Pointer is not a hunting dog you see every day (at least not in the US). Craig Koshyk has written extensively about these dogs in this book Pointing Dogs Volume One: The Continentals. He’s also posted a bit about them here at his Pointing Dog Blog.

Check out this video to see what these dogs look like in action:

The Burley Auction Group in New Braunfels, TX, is holding an auction this Saturday, 2/9. I took a quick look through the lots and here are a few things that caught my eye.

Lot 12: Antique Reloading Tools Flask Brass Shotgun Shells 3 old reloading tools, 6 Winchester No.12 Brass Shotgun Shells with leather holder, gunpowder flask & gunpowder tin. Sold as one collection. Estimate: 100.00 – 300.00

Lot 109: Winchester Model 24 Double Barrel Shotgun12 Gauge. Side by side, hammerless, 28″ barrels, Ser# 54342. Estimate: 400.00 – 600.00

Lot 113: Ruger O/U Red Label 12 Gauge ShotgunSporting clays, 3″ chambers, with 6 extra chokes, replacement fiber optic front sight, 30″ barrels. Ser# 411-03295. Estimate: 600.00 – 1,200.00

Lot 114: Ansley H. Fox Double Barrel Shotgun Side by side, 28″ barrels, hammerless, some engraving, Krupp fluid steel barrel, has bulge on RH barrel at end of barrel. . Ser# 1193A. Estimate: 400.00 – 600.00

Lot 115: L.C. Smith The Fulton 20 Gauge Shotgun Hunter Arms “The Fulton” Side by side, hammerless, 28″ barrels, Ser# F86152. Estimate: 400.00 – 600.00

 

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