This week’s 5 good guns…

 

JOHN WILKES PAIR BEST LONDON SIDELOCKS SXS .410
JOHN WILKES PAIR BEST LONDON SIDELOCKS SXS .410

JOHN WILKES PAIR BEST LONDON SIDELOCKS SXS .410: Price: $79,500
KEN HUNT ENGRAVED
CONSECUTIVE NUMBERED
BOTH ARE 26″ MOD AND FULL 3″ CHAMBERS
DOUBLE TRIGGER
EJECTORS
SPLINTER FOREARM
ENGLISH GRIP
CHECKERED BUTT
4LBS 14 OZ X 2 X 1 1/2 X 15
BOTH GUNS ARE NEW UNFIRED IN MAKERS CASE

Westley Richards 20 bore  Hand Detachable (drop lock) Ejector, Side-by-Side Shotgun
Westley Richards 20 bore  Hand Detachable (drop lock) Ejector, Side-by-Side Shotgun

Westley Richards 20 bore  Hand Detachable (drop lock) Ejector, Side-by-Side Shotgun: Single Trigger, with a modern leather case. Circa 1931, Barrels are 28 inches with original 2 3/4 chambers proofed for 1 oz. Scalloped backed action 80 % coverage large scroll. Original Westley Richards Patent one trigger. Nicely fiddle figured European walnut stock measures 13 7/8 over a thin checkered horn plate, Deluxe checkering. Bore diameter left .619 right .620. Min. wall thickness right .030 left .032  choke is full and full both barrels .031. Dimensions are 1 5/8″ X 2 1/2″ with cast approx 1/4″ on. Weight 6 lbs. Barrels, Whitworth Steel, chopper lump, retain 90% of what looks to be original black. Action retains 70% to 80% case color. Floor plate retains 50% A lovely small bore upland or game gun. Price: $26,500

Chas. Lancaster .450/400 3 1/4" Side-by-Side Doxlock Non-Ejector Double Rifle, Super Condition
Chas. Lancaster .450/400 3 1/4″ Side-by-Side Doxlock Non-Ejector Double Rifle, Super Condition

Chas. Lancaster .450/400 3 1/4″ Side-by-Side Doxlock Non-Ejector Double Rifle, Super Condition: This is another one of those double rifles that are in exceptional condition without having been run through the refinishing mill. Barrels retain 98% original black. Frame has 90-95% vivid case color.  Wood is in very good condition, showing some handling marks.  The only alteration to the rifle is on the wood.  At one time a tang sight was added to the rifle which has been removed and new wood filled in its place; evidenced in one of the pictures.  Just a pleasure to find something this nice. Bores Are absolutely Mint!!!! 28″ barrels. 1/4 rib with 1S &2 F Scroll – 80% coverage. French Walnut stock. Solid Red Recoil Pad. 14 5/8″ LOP. 11 lbs. 2 oz. Price: $24,500

Lefever EE Grade 12ga. SxS Shotgun – BEAUTIFUL DAMASCUS, GREAT DIMENSIONS
Lefever EE Grade 12ga. SxS Shotgun – BEAUTIFUL DAMASCUS, GREAT DIMENSIONS

Lefever EE Grade 12ga. SxS Shotgun – BEAUTIFUL DAMASCUS, GREAT DIMENSIONS: 1901, 12 Gauge, 7lbs 10oz, SxS Serial Number: 35307E. Most who pursue American doubles are aware that Lefever Arms Co. of Syracuse, N.Y. produced very elegant shotguns.  The engraving is better than most in its tasteful application, the frames were ornately sculpted and shaped, and the workmanship overall was superior to the competition of the day.  With the last Lefever being produced in 1919, Lefever produced relatively few guns; in the range of 50.000 or so in all grades and gauges, most being lower grade guns.  Mr. Elliot’s book “Uncle Dan Lefever—Master Gunmaker” notes few high-grade Lefevers were produced, and most gunners that search for fine American vintage double guns are aware that there are few Lefever EE Grade guns ever seen for sale, especially in great original condition.  MOST IMPORTANTLY, THIS LEFEVER, SN35307 MADE IN 1901, RETAINS PLENTY OF  FACTORY ORIGINAL CASE COLORS. Price: $4,450

Ruger Red Label. 28 ga. 28" choke tubes, with extra straight stock
Ruger Red Label. 28 ga. 28″ choke tubes, with extra straight stock

Ruger Red Label. 28 ga. 28″ choke tubes, with extra straight stockHere is a nice, lightweight 28 ga. that is both light, petite, and in a great gauge. Also with this gun come with an extra straight stock that has been shortened for a lady, youngster or a gentleman with shorter arms. The wood has lots of figure and would rate about 95% with some surface marks. The action of this gun has a few buff marks at the top. 1 1/2 x 2 3/8 x 14 1/2 * 6 lb 4 oz. Price: $1595.

Amazing! What a pair of SxS Purdeys…

James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with "Extra Finish"
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with “Extra Finish”

According to its name, a “Best” gun sounds like it should be the finest shotgun a gunmaker builds. But that’s not always the case. With some makers, there’s a grade above “Bests” — “Better Bests”, I guess.

Holland & Holland calls these Modele de Luxes. At James Purdey & Sons, they’re known as guns with “Extra finish“, and the pair of 12 gauge Purdey sidelocks you see here are just that.

Overall, guns with Extra Finish are built to the same level as the maker’s standard Best-quality guns (or maybe a bit better, in the case of this pair). But as you can see, their engraving is taken to the next level (here’s a standard Purdey).

James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with "Extra Finish"
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with “Extra Finish”

These two may have been engraved by Ken Hunt (aka “The Godfather of Gun Engraving”), a British craftsman who worked at Purdey’s and learned his trade from Harry Kell. Along with the gorgeous engraving, the guns are beautifully made all around. Check out the metal-to-metal fit and the way the forend iron fits onto the action. Then look at those perfect drop points on the stock.

Does all this make them worth $125,000? Perhaps. Even with twice that much money, you would have a hard time duplicating the quality of these Purdeys today. Personally, I don’t think you could do it.

PURDEY BEST EXTRA FINISH SXS PAIR 12 GAUGE: THESE APPEAR TO BE KEN HUNT ENGRAVED #266XX BOTH GUNS ARE IDENTICAL AND HAVE BEEN USED ON ONE DRIVEN HUNT IN THE LATE 50S THESE CAME FROM ORIGINAL OWNER 28″ SELF OPENERS 008 AND 022 2 3/4 DOUBLE TRIGGER EJECTORS SPLINTER FOREARM ENGLISH GRIP CHECKERED BUTT MAKERS MOTOR CASE NEW CONDITION 6LBS 11 OZ X 2 1/8″ X 1 7/16″ X 14 1/4″. Price: $125,000

James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with "Extra Finish"
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with “Extra Finish”
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with "Extra Finish"
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with “Extra Finish”
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with "Extra Finish"
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with “Extra Finish”
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with "Extra Finish"
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with “Extra Finish”
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with "Extra Finish"
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with “Extra Finish”
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with "Extra Finish"
James Purdey & Sons, pair of 12 gauge sidelock SxS shotguns with “Extra Finish”
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