Beautiful shotgun, bargain price: 12g boxlock Gastinne Renette …

12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun
12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun

I love the American guns, but I hate the prices you have to pay for good ones. On most Parkers, Foxes, L.C. Smiths — especially the higher grades — you’re paying more for a name and its sentimental connections than you are for true quality.

But when you buy Belgian and French doubles, different dynamics come into play. You can pay relatively little money and get a gun that’s extremely well made. That’s the case with this Gastinne Renette. It’s a fantastic double, very high quality, and it looks like it’s in incredible original condition.

12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun
12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun

Gastinne Renette is one of Europe’s most famous gunmakers. They started building guns in the early-to-mid 1800s, and their clients included all sorts of aristocrats and noble types, including Napoleon III. I think they still had a retail shop in Paris up into the 1970s.

This Gastinne is an Anson & Deeley pattern boxlock with ejectors. It looks like it was built in Belgium, probably before WW2, and then retailed in Paris by the “maker”. This was a pretty common practice for a lot of the Parisian gunmakers, and for a lot of the “makers” throughout Europe.

12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun
12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun

12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun: A 12 ga shotgun chambered for 2-1/2″ shells. A very classic looking European shotgun with a straight grip stock. Very thin in the wrist area. Very tight engraving on the frame. Heavy deep relief engraved bolsters. The frame has most case color remaining. Typical of European style, the inset panel is in blue as is the trigger guard. Extensive high quality engraving with the classical long pointed lower tang. Bbl blue very nice also. Wood is good overall cond with typical hunting mars and dings. The buttplate on this is not separate but instead sculpted into the stock. Letters in gold are “J L F” towards the heal of the stock. A fine looking shotgun that would make a dandy hunting gun. Price: $ 2,100

12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun
12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun
12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun
12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun
12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun
12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun
12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun
12g Gastinne Renette, Paris, Side-by-Side Shotgun

Auction alert: a nice 16g A.H. Fox Sterlingworth Ejector &

Amoskeag Auctions in Manchester, NH, is have a sale tomorrow, September 27, 2014 @ 9:00 AM EST. Here a couple doubles in the auction that caught my eye.

This Fox is a great grouse gun and just about as All-American as doubles. Sterlingworths are one of the best values you’ll find in American doubles. If you want a classic side-by-side, this is it.

Lot 214: A H Fox Sterlingworth Boxlock Double Ejector Shotgun
Lot 214: A H Fox Sterlingworth Boxlock Double Ejector Shotgun

Lot 214: A H Fox Sterlingworth Boxlock Double Ejector Shotgun: Serial #360122, 16 ga., 28″ barrels choked modified and full with about excellent bores, each showing some wad residue. The barrels retain about 97-98% original blue, the loss is due primarily to some light fading, showing perhaps a scattered spot or two of very light oxidation. The frame retains about 92-95% original color case-hardening, the only true loss being on the carry point of the belly, still exhibiting some muting colors in that area; the triggerguard retains a similar amount of original blue. The checkered walnut pistolgrip buttstock and splinter style forend rate very good plus to excellent with only minor dings and handling marks from the years, each stock cheek showing the beginnings of a light crack which would be easily arrestable by a competent wood man. The length of pull to the original grooved hard rubber buttplate is 14 1/8″ with drops of 1 5/8″ and 2 7/8″. The shotgun features an automatic safety and the lockup is Fox-tight with the top lever still right of center and the gun seems to function well mechanically. Really a super 16 bore Fox awaiting its return afield in the coming weeks. Estimated Price: $1,200 – $1,800

This Mahillion is close to best-grade Belgian shotgun, and  I bet you’ll be able to buy it for around the price of a nice 20g VHE Parker. It’s a hell of a lot more gun than anything that ever came out of Meriden, though, and it would be a fantastic upland gun.

Fine Belgian Sidelock Double Ejectorgun By H. Mahillion Of Brussels
Fine Belgian Sidelock Double Ejectorgun By H. Mahillion Of Brussels

Lot 21: Fine Belgian Sidelock Double Ejectorgun By H. Mahillion Of Brussels: Description: serial #6227, 20 ga., 26 3/4″ barrels choked improved modified and extra full with bright excellent bores. This is a fabulous Belgian double gun. The barrels are engraved with the maker’s name on one side and the address on the other, they have 2 3/4″ chambers and are proofed for same. The action and locks feature full coverage fine rose and scroll engraving with “H. MAHILLION” engraved on left lock and “BRUXELLES” on right. The fences are chiseled with relief flower blossoms and the triggerguard and forend metal all show full coverage tight scroll. The barrels retain about 97% original blue overall with all engraved markings remaining crisp and clear. The action and locks retain 95% strong original color case-hardened finish. The finely checkered pistolgrip buttstock and forend are of nicely figured walnut and rate very good with thinning oil finish that should be added to. The checkering is wonderful as is the fit with the grip cap being of horn and the butt being checkered. The shotgun handles beautifully with a 15″ length of pull over checkered butt; drops of 1 1/2″ and 2 1/2″ and it weighs 6 lbs. 4 oz. This shotgun additionally features an articulated front trigger, an automatic safety and gold washed cocking arms and ejector strikers. The toeline of the stock has a gold monogram plate inlaid which is engraved “RSP”. The shotgun comes in an old, and possibly original, brass trimmed leather trunk style case with proper period Mahillion paper label inside lid along with an oil bottle, snap caps, key and cleaning implements. The condition of the case is very good plus. Mahillion guns are considered among the finest Belgian guns and this example lives up to that reputation. Truly an extremely fine and wonderful small bore sidelock double ejectorgun. Estimated Price: $3,500 – $5,500

Fine Belgian Sidelock Double Ejectorgun By H. Mahillion Of Brussels
Fine Belgian Sidelock Double Ejectorgun By H. Mahillion Of Brussels

Auction alert: a nice 20g Browning Superposed Lightning from 1952…

Browning Belgium Superposed Lightning 20 Gauge
Browning Belgium Superposed Lightning 20 Gauge

John Moses Browning was one of the most inventive minds in firearms. Born in 1855, he awarded his first patent at age 24. Between then and when he died in 1926, he designed and patented for everything from pistols and shotguns to rifles, machine guns, and cartridges. Mr Browning’s last design was for the famous Suporposed shotgun. Even though he passed away in 1926, his design was completed and introduced in 1931. The Superposed would go on to become one of the world’s great shotguns.

The 20 gauge Browning Superposed you see here looks like it’s in great shape. If you’re a collector, or if you would like to buy a classic shotgun that’s still basically brand-new, this is the one for you. This gun is on Gunbroker.com now, and the listing ends this Wednesday, 5/21, @ 2:44:08 PM ET.

20g Belgian Browning Superposed Lightning O/U Shotgun: You won’t find a better one. Gorgeous striped walnut with 99% original finish. Original blue of 99%. 28 inch barrels choked IC& Mod. Mechanically perfect with mint bores. Solid rib , long tang , round knob , ejectors , 2 3\4 inch chambers. Light as a feather and comes up like a dream !!! 1952 gun with serial number 49XX. LOOKS NEW !!!!!!!

20g Belgian Browning Superposed Lightning O/U Shotgun
20g Belgian Browning Superposed Lightning O/U Shotgun
Browning Belgium Superposed Lightning 20 Gauge
Browning Belgium Superposed Lightning 20 Gauge

Nice looking Browning – Lebeau Courally 20 gauge sidelock…

Browning Lebeau Courally LC1 20 Gauge Sidelock Shotgun
Browning Lebeau Courally LC1 20 Gauge Sidelock Shotgun

Browning is one of the world’s most famous gunmakers – and for good reason.  John Browning changed the gun world forever, and millions of shooters have cherished creations. But even though Mr Browning designed two of the most iconic shotguns of the 20th century – the Auto 5 and the Superposed – he never developed a SxS.

Browning’s first SxS was a rugged boxlock called BSS. Introduced in 1971 and offered until , it made in Japan by Miroku. Browning added to it’s BSS line in 1983 with introduction of its highly regarded BSS sidelock. While both models were well made, Browning stopped producing them in 1987. But even though the BSS ended, Browning still offered side-by-sides through The Browning Custom Shop in Herstal, Belgium.  I don’t know a lot about the SxSs they offered but at least two of the models (LC1 & LC2) were offered until about 2006. Both were manufactured by the famous Belgian firm Lebeau-Courally, and the gun you see here is one the guns that company built. This gun looks top quality, and at $10,500, it’s a very fair deal.

Browning Lebeau Courally LC1 20 Gauge Sidelock Shotgun
Browning Lebeau Courally LC1 20 Gauge Sidelock Shotgun

Browning Lebeau Courally LC1 20 Gauge Sidelock Shotgun: From the Browning Custom Shop by Lebeau Courally. This 20 Gauge bar action sidelock with 28″ F/M chopper lump ejector barrels with 2 3/4″ chambers and smooth raised rib. Bores measure .627 right and left. Choked .011 right and .028 left. Color case hardened reciever with border scroll engraving. Double triggers. Highly figured straight grip stock of European Walnut. 14 3/8″ LOP to a checkered butt. DAC-1 1/2″ DAH- 2 5/8″ Neutral cast. Splinter forend with Anson forend release. 6lb 1oz Cased in factory Emmebi trunk case with cloth sleeves. The Browning LC1 was discontinued in 2006. MSR at that time was $17,516. This outstanding 20 bore game gun remains in new and possibly unfired condition. Outstanding value by Belgium’s top tier maker. Price: $10,500

Browning Lebeau Courally LC1 20 Gauge Sidelock Shotgun
Browning Lebeau Courally LC1 20 Gauge Sidelock Shotgun
Browning Lebeau Courally LC1 20 Gauge Sidelock Shotgun
Browning Lebeau Courally LC1 20 Gauge Sidelock Shotgun

This week’s good guns: Powered by Gunsinternational.com…

JOSEPH MANTON 16 BORE PERCUSSION BALL & SHOTGUN
JOSEPH MANTON 16 BORE PERCUSSION BALL & SHOTGUN

JOSEPH MANTON 16 BORE PERCUSSION BALL & SHOTGUN. 16 bore, 32″ twist steel barrels, stepped at 22 1/2″ from the muzzle and intended for ball as well as shot. The barrel legend reads “JOSEPH MANTON & SON, 6 HOLLES STREET, CAVENDISH SQUARE, LONDON”. Serial number 10651 and listed in the Manton book with a full description including the stepped barrel. Cased in a magnificent pigskin lined oak box by John Dickson & Son’s for Charles Gordon around 1890. It is now in mint condition with all of the accessories that include both shot flask and mold.  Price: $24,500.00

Beautiful Belgium Browning Superposed Midas 20 Gauge RKLT
Beautiful Belgium Browning Superposed Midas 20 Gauge RKLT

Beautiful Belgium Browning Superposed Midas 20 Gauge RKLT: Very desirable 28″ bbl, 3″ chambers, f/f, 14 1/4″ LOP. 100% factory original, original Browning pad. Vranken engraved, and signed 3 times! 1960 gun, RKLT. 1960 was the first year of the named Brownings, before that they were grades. Vranken was the engraver who designed the new Midas engraving, this is his work, possibly even one of the first. Conservative 95% condition. Cased. Price: $17,950

Westley Richards Droplock 12ga Single Trigger 27"
Westley Richards Droplock 12ga Single Trigger 27″

Westley Richards Droplock 12ga Single Trigger 27″: The nicest Westley I have seen weighs only 6lbs 9oz , has a factory single trigger, ejectors, 27in barrels,choked imp. cyl./ full  ,unbelievable wood, 14 1/2 in LOP to a checkered butt, straight english stock  gun is marked # 1 in gold. Price: $13,450.00

Armes De Luxe Masqulier Liege 12ga SxS (Paul Jaeger Import): Made in Liege, Belgium, Imported by Paul Jaeger of Jenkintown, PA. Like New Condition. English (Straight) Stock. 26 3/8″ barrels MOD/CYL. 15.25 LOP x 2.5D@H, Mod & Cyl. Price: $4,295.00

Armes De Luxe Masqulier Liege 12ga SxS (Paul Jaeger Import)
Armes De Luxe Masqulier Liege 12ga SxS (Paul Jaeger Import)
Francotte #14 Jubilee 16ga. (Abercrombie & Fitch Import)
Francotte #14 Jubilee 16ga. (Abercrombie & Fitch Import)

Francotte #14 Jubilee 16ga. (Abercrombie & Fitch Import): 28″ Churchill style solid rib, choked IM/F, 70% coverage engraving,DT’s jectors,breathtaking long tang Belgium Bastogne straight walnut stock & forearm, 14 1/4″+ LOP, 1 1/2″ DAC – 2 3/” DAH – 6 lbs., 99%+ As New Condition condition. Price: $3,999.00

Get this great grouse gun: 20g Browning Superposed Superlight…

20 gauge Browning Superlight O/U Double Barrel Shotgun
20 gauge Browning Superlight O/U Double Barrel Shotgun

If had to come up with a list of the greatest grouse guns of all time, a 20 gauge Browning Superlight over-under like this one would be on it for a number of reasons: It’s lightweight (5lbs, 11oz), it has modern dimensions (1 3/8″ x 2 1/8″ X 14 1/8), it has 2 3/4″ chambers, and it has one of the most reliable single triggers ever made.

20 gauge Browning Superlight O/U Double Barrel Shotgun
20 gauge Browning Superlight O/U Double Barrel Shotgun

This one is on Gunbroker.com now and auction end on 9/4/2013 @ 8:31:51 PM ET. So if you like the looks of it, get on it now.

20 gauge Browning Superposed Superlight O/U Shotgun: Browning Superposed Grade 1 Superlight 20 ga. Serial number 59225V70. Excellent original finishes with minor bluing loss and just a few handling marks in the wood. Very attractive and tight gun. The wood finish is crazing and can be seen when held in the right light. Barrel length is 26 1/2 and measures as follows: Bottom .619 (.005) Top .619 (.005). Barrels are marked mod/full and clearly have been opened to skeet. The stock is crack-free and measures 14 1/8 to a Browning plate, 1 3/8 drop at comb, and 2 1/8 drop at heel. Overall, the gun weighs 5 lbs 11 oz.

20 gauge Browning Superlight O/U Double Barrel Shotgun
20 gauge Browning Superlight O/U Double Barrel Shotgun

Good gun alert: 12 gauge Francotte hammergun, fluid steel barrels…

12 gauge Francotte Steel Barrel Hammergun, Floral Engraving
12 gauge Francotte Steel Barrel Hammergun, Floral Engraving

Francotte is one of my favorite gunmakers. In the 190+ years they were around, they made thousands and thousands of side-by-side shotguns from their factory in Leige, Belgium. Today, the ones we see more often are boxlocks like this. They were imported into the US by companies like Von Lengerke & Detmold and Abercrombie & Fitch.

The Francottes we rarely see are hammerguns like the one here – especially ones with fluid-steel barrels and straight grips. Hammerguns are a lot of fun to shoot, and every time I pick one of mine up I feel like I’m traveling back in time. If you would like to experience the same feeling yourself, this Francotte would be a great way to do it.

12 gauge Francotte Steel Barrel Hammergun, Floral Engraving
12 gauge Francotte Steel Barrel Hammergun, Floral Engraving

Here’s more about it from the seller:

12 gauge Francotte Steel Barrel Hammergun, Floral EngravingHere is nicely engraved Francotte Steel Barreled Hammer Gun with 28 1/4″ barrels. Rebounding hammers. Sideclips and Greener style third fastener. Double underbite lock up. Straight grip with long trigger tang. Francotte marked on the barrel flats – “Crown AF” for August Francotte. Elegant sculpted and engraved hammers – have the appearance of English style. Old swivel holes in stock and barrel – plug them for a better apperance. Slotted and engraved swivel plugs for the barrel are an excellent solution.

12 gauge Francotte Steel Barrel Hammergun, Floral Engraving
12 gauge Francotte Steel Barrel Hammergun, Floral Engraving

Right bore measures .730 with 25/1000 choke (Imp Mod) while left barrel also measures .730 with 35/1000 choke (Full). Forcing cones lengthened. Chambers measure 3″. Anson push rod forend fastening system. Recoil pad is a “Western Field” – poorly fitting and should be replaced. Top tang screw should be replaced as it is below the the top tang – budget $150 for this. Weight of gun is 6 LBS 8 1/2 OZ. Shipping is $35 and will be shipped in a hard case. Stock dimensions follow. LOP 14 3/4″, Drop at Comb – 1 1/2″, Drop at Heel – 2 5/8″. Price: $2,900

12 gauge Francotte Steel Barrel Hammergun, Floral Engraving
12 gauge Francotte Steel Barrel Hammergun, Floral Engraving

Good gun alert: a nice 12 gauge Browning Superposed O/U…

Belgian Browning 12ga Grade one Superposed. Over-Under Shotgun
Belgian Browning 12ga Grade one Superposed. Over-Under Shotgun

Browning’s Superposeds O/Us are one of America’s classic shotguns — even though they were made in Europe. From grouse in Pennsylvania to ducks in the Oregon, millions of birds have fallen to them, and millions of memorable days have ended with an proud owner oiling and admiring his prized Superposed.

While the Superposed was never really expensive shotgun (at least a Grade One), it was never cheap, either. In its day, owning one would have taken most people some patience and some saving. But it was available at a price within reach of many Americans (unlike O/Us by Boss, Woodward, and other British gunmakers).

Here’s more about this one from seller:

Belgian Browning 12ga Grade One Superposed: 28″ solid rib barrels choked modified(.015″) and full(.028″). Round knob,long tang gun made in 1951.98% finish remaining.Solid rib superposed guns are hard to find in this condition. Price: $2,195.00

Belgian Browning 12ga Grade one Superposed. Over-Under Shotgun
Belgian Browning 12ga Grade one Superposed. Over-Under Shotgun

A nice little hammergun, from Liege, Belgium…

Lovely 16 GA. SXS Belgian hammer shotgun by F. Lancelot & Co. Liege Retailed by P. Varriale, Naples.
Lovely 16 GA. SXS Belgian hammer shotgun by F. Lancelot & Co. Liege Retailed by P. Varriale, Naples.

Liege used to be the gunmaking capital of the world.

Located in eastern Belgium, it straddles the banks of the Meuse River. In the early 19th century, John Cockerill develop a steel industry there, and it was with this steel that countless gunmakers and craftmen filed up and turned out millions of firearms, from crudest muskets for the African slave trade to the finest shotguns for Kings, Czars and other rich folks around the world.

The double barrel shotgun you see here is fell somewhere in between these extremes. It was made by F. Lancelot — a gunmaker lost to history — and it’s a basic, 16 gauge hammergun with fluid steel barrels. Even though it was an inexpensive shotgun in its day, I’m sure it was still very well made. Here’s more about it from the seller:

Lovely 16 GA. SXS Belgian hammer shotgun by F. Lancelot & Co. Liege Retailed by P. Varriale, Naples.
Lovely 16 GA. SXS Belgian hammer shotgun by F. Lancelot & Co. Liege Retailed by P. Varriale, Naples.

F. Lancelot, Liege- Retailed by P. Varriale, Naples: Lovely 16 GA. SXS Belgian hammer shotgun by F. Lancelot & Co. Liege Retailed by P. Varriale, Naples. This smokeless proofed fluid steel barrelled  shotgun has it’s original 2 9/16″ (65m/m) chambers with long forcing cones and side clips.  Chokes measure .027 and .022 (16.4 and 16.5) barrel length 27.5″ Straight grip stock measures 14″ LOP to a bone butt plate. This strong action has three locking lugs including a Greener type cross bolt. The barrels retain 95+% of the original blue. The fore end and butt stock wood retain all of their original finish with only very minor nicks and scratches. An excellent Belgian pre-war hammer double. Price: $1750

Lovely 16 GA. SXS Belgian hammer shotgun by F. Lancelot & Co. Liege Retailed by P. Varriale, Naples.
Lovely 16 GA. SXS Belgian hammer shotgun by F. Lancelot & Co. Liege Retailed by P. Varriale, Naples.
Lovely 16 GA. SXS Belgian hammer shotgun by F. Lancelot & Co. Liege Retailed by P. Varriale, Naples.
Lovely 16 GA. SXS Belgian hammer shotgun by F. Lancelot & Co. Liege Retailed by P. Varriale, Naples.

Auction Alert: a bunch of nice Brownings…

I’m chilling and relaxing, and then I remembered this auction that

Browning - BSS 20 Ga Shotgun w/ Browning case
Browning – BSS 20 Ga Shotgun w/ Browning case

I had to tell everyone about: Cornwell Inc Land & Home Brokers in Aurora, NE, has this bunch of real nice Brownings in its sale, ending tomorrow around 10:30AM, EST:

Browning – Lightning Superposed 20 Ga Shotgun

Browning – 12 Ga Shotgun BSS w/ case

Browning – Lightning Superposed 12 Ga Shotgun

Browning – BSS 20 Ga Shotgun w/ Browning case

Browning – Citori Superlight Over/Under 410 Ga Shotgun; NIB

Browning – Belgium 12 Ga Shotgun 1931 w/black elephant hide case

Auction Alert: 12 gauge Francotte, 12g Westley Richards

12 gauge Francotte Grade 14 double barrel shotgun
12 gauge Francotte Grade 14 double barrel shotgun

Here are a couple double barrel shotguns coming up at auction tomorrow. Sorry for the late notice, but I just found out about them.

12 gauge Westley Richards, boxlock ejector, 30″ bbls. Wiederseim Associates, Inc. in Chester Springs, PA, has this shotgun and the auction is tomorrow, 6/9/

Francotte has always made nice double barrels – especially Anson & Deeley boxlocks. There’s one coming up tomorrow, 6/9, at Hap Moore Auctions in southern Maine.

From the auctioneer’s site:

-Francotte Model 14 (extractors) 12ga shotgun with leather case. 2 ¾” chambers. 30” barrels with good bores. Walls L .026, R .028. Chokes L .026, R .004. Weight 6 lbs  15 oz. Lop 14 1/8” over a 1″ kickeez pad.

12 gauge Westley Richards Double Barrel Shotgun
12 gauge Westley Richards Double Barrel Shotgun

Vintage double of the week: 16 gauge Guyot shotgun…

Guyot is a gunmaker I’ve written about before. While I’ve seen a number of double-barrel shotguns marked with the Guyot name, I know very little about the maker. About all I’ve been able to come up with is that they made some real nice guns. This boxlock at Jaqua’s is an excellent example.

16g Guyot Double Barrel Shotgun
16g Guyot Double Barrel Shotgun

It’s a 16g gauge with double triggers and ejectors. It looks like it was made on the proven Anson & Deeley patent action. I would guess that this gun was made in Belgium for Guyot, and if I had to bet I would say that Francotte was behind it (check out this Francotte Knock About to see what I mean).

Finish wise, it looks nearly new and all original. If it is all that, $1995 is a  reasonable price. Where else can you buy that much quality, and that much condition, for that kind of money?

Details…

Best-quality guns are all about the little details – the shape of the drop points, the fit of the forend, the shaping of the fences, and the composition of the engraving.

At the Southern a few weeks ago, I saw an unusual gun that hit all these little things out of the park. It was a 12 gauge F. Thirifays double barrel shotgun. All I know about this double barrel is that it was made in Belgium, probably before WW2. It was in fantastic condition and beautiful.

Take a look for yourself. And check out the little details, especially on the stock. When you see sideviews of the action, check out that little nipple of wood poking into the metalwork. That’s how a master stockmaker shows off.

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