Shhh…this 12 gauge Purdey Light Game Gun is such an elegant double…

12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotgun
12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotgun

Quiet elegance — those words do a great job of describing Purdey’s standard shotgun. While James Purdey & Sons did make some of the finest doubles in the London, their standard, best-quality guns were never the flashiest in the city.

Instead of using grand gestures to grab your attention, Purdeys use subtle touches and tremendous quality to achieve subtle, refined, and more tasteful look. You can see the results in the 12 gauge game gun pictured here. Made between the World Wars, when the London’s gunmakers turned out some of the finest side-by-sides in the world, it’s coming up to auction next week at James D. Julia’s Fall Firearms Sale.

12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotgun
12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotgun

EXCEPTIONALLY FINE JAMES PURDEY SIDELOCK EJECTOR SINGLE TRIGGER LIGHT GAME GUN WITH ORIGINAL CASE AND ACCESSORIES. SN 23737. (1927) Cal. 12 ga. 27″ Chopper lump bbls are engraved “James Purdey & Sons. Audley House. South Audley Street. London.” and “Made of Sir Joseph Whitworth’s Fluid Pressed Steel” on narrow, deeply swamped game rib, fitted with red front and mid beads. Bbl flats are stamped with London nitro proofs for 1-1/8 oz of shot. Bottoms of bbls are stamped with SN. Bbl maker’s initial “H” (for long time Purdey craftsman William Hill) is on bottom of left bbl. Splinter is engraved “Made in England”. Tube nos. “58724” and “58725” are on loop. Case hardened, Beesley patent, self-opening, sidelock action features automatic safety (SAFE inlaid in gold), bushed strikers, raised rib tumbler end cocking indicators, and Purdey non-selective single trigger. Action and lockplates are engraved with exceptionally well cut small scroll with rose bouquet highlights in “house” style. “J. Purdey & Sons” is at the bottom of each lockplate, and also on bottom of action over “London”. Small bow trigger guard is engraved with medium scroll and with SN at grip. Well figured and nicely marbled, dark European walnut straight grip buttstock measures 14-3/8″ over checkered wood butt, and features standard point pattern checkering with mullered borders, drop points, and a gold oval on toe line engraved “G. P.” Matching splinter ejector forend has Anson release. Iron is stamped with actioners initials “FH” (Fred Hughes). Bore diameter: left-.734, right -.735. Bore restrictions: left -.007 (IC), right -.008 (IC). Wall thickness: left -.031, right -.030. Drop at heel: 2-1/4″, drop at comb: 1-3/8″. Weight: 6 lbs. 1 oz. LOP: 14-3/8″.

12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotgun
12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotgun

Maker’s oak and leather case with brass corners and push button latch has round brass central medallion and inset leather tag embossed with an early owner’s name on top. Front of lid is embossed “Made in England”. Interior is lined in scarlet cloth with gold embossed black leather Purdey label and charge card (for this gun) on lid. Case contains two 2-pc rosewood and brass cleaning rods with brush, mop, jag, and Turks head, pull through cleaning kit in black morocco wallet, action cleaning brushes in red morocco wallet, broken case extractor, 2 black wood handled turnscrews, striker disc tool, bone striker case with spare strikers, Purdey marked square oil bottle, and snap caps. Also included is a booklet “Instructions for Purdey Guns”, an inventory of items in case, and two keys.

12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotgun
12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotgun

PROVENANCE: Abercrombie & Fitch tag with specifications and price of $875.00 affixed to trigger guard.

CONDITION: Excellent.  Action retains 60 – 70% orig case hardening color, silvered on bottoms and beads. Lockplates retain 85 – 95% orig case hardening color, left being the strongest. Top lever and forend iron retain most of their orig blue, slightly silvered  Stocks retain nearly all of their orig rubbed oil finish with a number of minor marks.. Checkering is slightly worn and dark. Bores are excellent, smooth, bright and shiny throughout. Action is tight. Bbls are on face. Ejectors are in time. Trigger works. Case leather is excellent, with little discoloration,and a few bumps and rubs. Charge card is slightly foxed. Accessories are very fine. Pamphlet is slightly squished from being fit to case. A very fine, well balanced, fast handling, high condition gun from the 1920’s. Price: $15,000-$25,000

12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotgun
12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotgun

Auction alert: a 10 gauge James Purdey & Sons double barrel shotgun…

10 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotguns
10 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotguns

Ten gauge Purdey shotguns are not very common, so when one pops up, it catches my attention. The one you see here is at Alex Cooper Auctioneers in Towson, MD, and it goes off today, September 28 @ 1:00 PM EST.

Interestingly, this one is nitro-proofed for 1 1/2 oz loads. That’s the same amount of lead than a 12g, 3 1/2″ shell throws. But a ten gauge does it better and throw better patterns because of its larger bore size. It’s also built to handle the recoil, so it will do less damage to you, and itself, when you pull the trigger.

10 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotguns
10 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotguns

James Purdey & Sons 10 gauge Double Barrel Sidelock SxS Shotgun: London, 1905, made on order of J. H. Smith, Tuxedo Park, NY; blued double barrel, 31 in. L.; engraved case-hardened frame; checkered burl walnut stock and forearm; with original case and several accessories (including barrel rods, cleaning tools, and loading tools). Estimate: $20,000 – $25,000

10 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotguns
10 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel SxS Shotguns

Wow – a super nice 12 gauge Purdey double barrel Pigeon shotgun…

12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel, SxS Shotgun
12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel, SxS Shotgun

Before there was golf, there was pigeon shooting. At one time this game/sport was one of the most popular pastimes in America. Cities and towns across the country had clubs dedicated to pigeon shooting, and the local papers reported on the shoots like they were high school basketball games. Big money was won and lost at pigeon shoots and serious competitors had double barrel shotguns custom made for the game.

Today, most of the pigeon shooting clubs are gone. But many of the guns built for the ring are still around. With long barrels, tight chokes, a heavy proof, and a pretty high stock, the James Purdey side-by-side shotgun you see here may be one of those double barrels. It looks like it’s in fantastic original condition, and today it would be the perfect gun for sporting clays, high, driven pheasants, or to just check out and appreciate.

12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel, SxS Shotgun
12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel, SxS Shotgun

JAMES PURDEY & SONS – 12 ga.SIDELOCK EJECTOR SELF OPENING PIGEON GUN : 31’ BARRELS CHOKED 7/8 & FULL (.030/.045 ) – SIDE CLIPS & THIRD FASTENER – STRAIGHT HAND STOCK MEASURES 14 7/16” OVER PAD X 1 3/8” X 2” – PROOF IS 1 ¼” WITH 2 7/8” CHAMBERS – CASE COLOURS 75% – HAS RAISED MATTED PIGEON RIB – MADE IN 1926 – CASED IN ORIGINAL OAK & LEATHER . Price: $39,000.00

12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel, SxS Shotgun
12 gauge James Purdey & Sons Double Barrel, SxS Shotgun
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