See this week’s 5 good guns you don’t want to miss …

J. Purdey & Sons - Best Sidelock Ejector - 410 ga - OU
J. Purdey & Sons – Best Sidelock Ejector – 410 ga – OU

J. Purdey & Sons – Best Sidelock Ejector – 410 ga – OU: #30309. Trigger: Single, Grip: Prince of Wales grip, Forend: Checkered, Lop: 15 1/8 “, Type of butt: Checkered Wood, Drop comb: 1 3/8 “, Drop heel: 1 7/8 “, Cast amount: 3/16 “, Cast: OFF, Weight: 5 lbs, 10 oz, Manufactured in: England, Finish: Coin & Black, Overall condition: Very Good, Stock condition: Very Good, Metal condition: Very Good, Stock: Original finish, Metal: Original finish, Type of Case: Leather Luggage Case, Chamber: 3 “, Length: 29 “, Chokes: F/F, Rib type: Solid, Comments : Beautiful gun with a small stock repair on left side of wrist. Price: $80,000

LANCASTER 450/400 3 1/4" BPE- DELUXE GRADE- SUPERB ORIG. COND.- FULLY ENGRAVED- DELUXE WOOD- ACCURATE- MADE 1884 for NAWAB of BAHAWALPUR- SCREWS
LANCASTER 450/400 3 1/4″ BPE- DELUXE GRADE- SUPERB ORIG. COND.- FULLY ENGRAVED- DELUXE WOOD- ACCURATE- MADE 1884 for NAWAB of BAHAWALPUR- SCREWS

LANCASTER 450/400 3 1/4″ BPE- DELUXE GRADE- SUPERB ORIG. COND.- FULLY ENGRAVED- DELUXE WOOD- ACCURATE- MADE 1884 for NAWAB of BAHAWALPUR- SCREWS: #5415, Charles Lancaster: 151 New Bond Street, London: A 450/400 3 1/4″ Black Powder Express Deluxe Grade Double Rifle That Remains in Superb Condition, Fully engraved, Excellent wood, It is Accurate, Made in 1884 for Nawab of the Princely State Bahawalpur, A Jones action underlever back-action locks with non-rebounding hammers, London proved, 28″ “Non-Fouling Smooth Oval Bore Rifling” steel barrels with a rib extension dolls head, Full length matted rib with 1 standing rear sight that is Gold lined, Percussion style fences, Dolphin hammers, Rear sliding hammer safeties, A long trigger guard tang that is engraved and checkered, An absolute deluxe piece of wood with great color contrast, Extremely solid wood that will last another 137 years, Shadowline cheekpiece, Sling eyes, The forend release is a patented rotating snap that has a friction-reducing roller under the forend iron that is spring loaded to force the rod forward so it will snap into the bite on the forend loop mounted on the barrels, To remove it you insert your finger tip at the forward end of the forend and pull down so the roller allows the spring to compress, A novel and secure tiedown that came from George Hackett as patent #964 of 1878, 14 1/4″ LOP over a fully checkered and engraved steel buttplate, Great weight at 8 lbs. 7 oz., 95% coverage of excellent period scroll engraving that covers all the metal including the forend iron and trigger guard, The original & honest barrel blue remains at 94% with excellent striking, 40% original case colors that is very vivid in some areas, The breech face has 50% case colors with zero primer burn at the striker holes, The butt & forend are as solid as they were 137 years ago, The original stock finish is at 80% with 137 years of handling but never refinished, The original checkering remains at 95%, The bores and chambers are absolutely excellent plus without a pit to be had, The inletting looks like the tree grew around the metal, Every screw including the buttplate remains at 98% and they lay north & south, The inside of the forend almost looks like it left the shop yesterday, The dolls head fits like new. It is cased in a near vintage oak & leather trunk that is in very nice condition. It is very accurate with .406″ 250 & 254 grain bullets using 4198 powder at 50 yards and shoots to the point of aim. This is very nice stuff in a total Deluxe Grade double from the real Golden Era of the British gun trade. Dreams of tigers and ships and palaces, fine spices and women and silk. As my friend Mr. Wal Winfer would say, “We are but temporary custodians of all things on this planet. Treat this old piece gently. Load and shoot it with care. But, above all, preserve its integrity for the future enjoyment of the next temporary custodian.” Price: $12,750

WINCHESTER MODEL 21 20 GAUGE SxS SHOTGUN
WINCHESTER MODEL 21 20 GAUGE SxS SHOTGUN

WINCHESTER MODEL 21 20 GAUGE SxS SHOTGUN: #178XX, 28″ IC AND M 006 AND 015 CONSTRICTION, DOUBLE TRIGGERS, EJECTORS, SPLINTER FOREARM, ENGLISH GRIP, EXCELLENT WITH LIGHT WEAR, 6LBS  4OZ, 2 3/16″ DAH, 1 1/4″ DAC, 14 3/4″ LOP. Price: $8,500

Charles Hellis & Sons Two Inch 12 gauge London Box Lock Ejector SxS Game Gun
Charles Hellis & Sons Two Inch 12 gauge London Box Lock Ejector SxS Game Gun

Charles Hellis & Sons Two Inch 12 gauge London Box Lock Ejector SxS Game Gun: This is a rare London address high grade box lock ejector in the Two Inch 12 bore. Built on a Birmingham proved action by London Best gun makers, Charles Hellis & Sons, it has fine, full coverage London rose, or bouquet, and scroll engraving, nicely figured walnut straight grip stock with drop points and fine checkering, excellent rust blue barrels and case colored action. Most two inch 12 bores were built very plain for low cost use by young shooters and ended up in poor condition. This one is quite the opposite, a beautiful higher grade London built boxlock in fine condition with adult dimensions and no problems. Very light weight and pleasant to shoot, it weighs just 5 pounds, 7 ounces.  It has automatic ejectors, 26 inch dovetail lump barrels, double triggers, auto safety, 14-1/4” stock over an Old English recoil pad. Bores are bright and shiny with no rust and measure .732 left and right. Both barrels are choked modified at .020, leaving room for adjustment if you desire. Bluing remains excellent overall with no rust and little wear.  Case coloring remains quite strong on the action. Engraving includes fences and splinter forend iron. The name C.Hellis & Sons, Ltd. Is engraved on both sides of the action, and the name and address is also engraved on the swamped game rib as ‘Charles Hellis & Sons, Ltd, 121 & 123 Edgeware Road, Hyde Park, London W.’   Also inlaid on the rib in either sterling silver or white gold are the words’FOR 2 INCH CASE ONLY’. Serial number is 4129 and it was likely built pre war in the early 1930s. Price: $6500

CAESAR GUERINI / LL BEAN .410 OU SHOTGUN
CAESAR GUERINI / LL BEAN .410 OU SHOTGUN

CAESAR GUERINI / LL BEAN .410 OU SHOTGUN: SPECIAL EDITION CAESAR GUERINI FOR LL BEAN,  410 UPLAND SHOTGUN WITH 28″ VENT RIB BARRELS. COMES WITH 4 CHOKE TUBES.  EXCELLENT CONDITION! 6LB….CASED LOP 14 7/8″-1 1/2″-2″. Price: $3,000

See how they’re made: Smith & Torok shotguns …

28-gauge Smith & Torok Over Under Shotgun
28-gauge Smith & Torok Over Under Shotgun

Here’s a cool video from one of the UK’s best-quality, boutique gunmakers: Smith & Torok. Check it out to see some classic, old-school gunmaking technques.

See how they're made: Smith & Torok shotguns...
See how they’re made: Smith & Torok shotguns…

On Ebay now: Boss, Purdey, Holland & Holland, NO RESERVES …

Here are some items I just listed on Ebay. All have $1 starts, no reserves.

Boss & Co Best-Quality Oak & Leather Case

Boss & Co Best-Quality Oak & Leather Case: Made in the 1990s for a 20g Boss OU shotgun, possibly by Vincent Rickards.
Boss & Co Best-Quality Oak & Leather Case:
Made in the 1990s for a 20g Boss OU shotgun, possibly by Vincent Rickards.

Made in the 1990s for a 20g Boss OU shotgun, possibly by Vincent Rickards.

James Purdey & Sons Lightweight Canvas Case with Accessories

James Purdey & Sons Lightweight Canvas Case with Accessories. Made for a 12-gauge side-by-side with 28” barrels.
James Purdey & Sons Lightweight Canvas Case with Accessories. Made for a 12-gauge side-by-side with 28” barrels.

Genuine “Lightweight Flat V.C Canvas Case”, superb original condition, made for a 12-gauge side-by-side shotgun, 28” barrel compartment.

Holland & Holland Best Quality Oak & Leather Shotgun Shell Magazine

Holland & Holland Best Quality Oak & Leather Shotgun Shell Magazine. Holds up to 500 12-gauge shotgun shells. Made for a British aristocrat.
Holland & Holland Best Quality Oak & Leather Shotgun Shell Magazine. Holds up to 500 12-gauge shotgun shells. Made for a British aristocrat.

Holds up to 500 12-gauge shotgun shells. Made for a British aristocrat.

See my other Ebay listings:

Abercrombie & Fitch nickel-plated oil bottle

Boss & Co 3-turnscrew set, best quality, possibly by Mike Marsh

Boss & Co 20g chamber brush, best quality

Boss & Co cleaning rod, best quality

12g Purdey snap caps

Purdey 3-turnscrew set, rosewood handles & red leather case

How to buy vintage shotguns without getting burned: The 2nd most important questions to ask a seller

Boss & Co. 20 bore SLE ~ Simply outstanding! This is a chance to own the very best of the best real estate in the double gun world! Super investment
Boss & Co. 20 bore SLE ~ Simply outstanding! This is a chance to own the very best of the best real estate in the double gun world! Super investment

So I’ve had tech issues with Dogs & Doubles, and it has taken me a while to get things sorted out. Sorry for the trouble. But now I’m back. So here’s the next part of How to buy vintage shotguns without getting burned.

A few weeks ago, I talked about the first of the three most important questions you need to ask a seller before you buy a gun:

Question 1: Is the gun all original or has it been redone?

This week, we’ll cover: Question 2: What’s the condition of the barrels?

One thing I learned quickly in my gun-hoarding days was that bad barrels equal a bad gun. I know this sounds extreme, but it’s true for 2 reasons.

This gun was intentionally destroyed with a gross overcharge of smokeless powder. Pic from MidwayUSA website
This gun was intentionally destroyed with a gross overcharge of smokeless powder. Pic from MidwayUSA website

1: Safety. If the integrity of the barrels is compromised in any way, you can’t count on them to constrain the forces that are unleashed when you fire a gun.

16g Parker CHE SxS Shotgun
16g Parker CHE SxS Shotgun

2: Barrels are never worth replacing. OK, almost never. But on an old Parker or Fox, a new set made from scratch will cost your $8,000+ — if you can find someone to do it and do it right. You can send a British SxS or an OU back to the UK for new barrels, but you’re talking at least $10,000. European stuff can be just as pricey.

So when you’re buying a vintage shotgun, you need to figure out the condition of the barrels right away. Here are 5 questions to ask the seller.

Are these barrels their original length? I hope so -- I own the gun!
Are these barrels their original length? I hope so — I own the gun!

1. Are the barrels their original length? Back in the day, gunsmiths used to hack off a couple of inches from shotgun barrels all the time, usually to open up the chokes or to remove damage at the muzzle end. Unfortunately, this can affect how the barrels shoot and how the gun balances. It also lowers a gun’s resale value and can look lousy. So if the barrels are no longer their original length, the smart move is to pass on the gun.

Ouch. A nasty dent in a set Parker barrels. Image from the PerlicanParts forum.
Ouch. A nasty dent in a set Parker barrels. Image from the PerlicanParts forum.

2. Are there are any dents, dings, or bulges in the barrels? If so, you may be able to fix them. But depending on where they are, how bad they are, and the overall quality of the gun, it may not be worth doing. Determining the severity of a dent, ding, or bulge requires a gunsmith. The moment you consult one, you’ll start running a tab that could go to $200+ if you move ahead with any work. BTW: Check out this article to read more about dents what goes into repairing them: The Ins And Outs Of Shotgun Barrel Dents

Bad pitting inside a shotgun barrel
Bad pitting inside a shotgun barrel

3. Is there any pitting or corrosion, inside or out? Rust is never good. But some pin-pricks and small blooms of it can be easy to deal with if they’re on the exterior of the bbls. The same is true with a little light frosting inside the tubes. But thick rust and pits can only be removed with honing and polishing. These fixes aren’t cheap and they can create thin spots in the tubes. None of that is good.

4. Are the ribs tight?  Shotgun ribs are fastened to the barrels with soldering. When this soldering comes loose and falls away, moisture works underneath and rust follows. While loose ribs can be relayed, you don’t know how extensive the rust damage is until you remove the ribs. Plus, relaying ribs is expensive and you’ll have to reblue the barrels once it’s done.

5. Are there are any signs of repairs? Barrels get dented and fixed. Sometimes they bulge and are repaired. When they rust, people clean them up and reblue them (but won’t always reblue them the right way). While minor repairs aren’t a huge concern, major fixes are. If a set of barrels has been repaired, you (or more likely a gunsmith) will have to inspect them to see if the repair was done correctly and if the area around the repair has been compromised. And you know what that means — $$$$.

So that’s a lot to ask — I know. Later this week I’ll go over the rest of the things you need to find out about a set of shotgun barrels before you guy the gun, including chamber lengths, bore sizes, and minimum wall thicknesses. Stay tuned.

Connect yourself to the past: a Parker and Purdeys with famous owners …

J Purdey & Sons Pre-Owned Trio of 20 bore Sidelock Ejector Over-and-Under Shotguns ordered by Sir Joseph Nickerson with Single Triggers. Set of 3 guns - #1 & #2 guns with Spare 26"
J Purdey & Sons Pre-Owned Trio of 20 bore Sidelock Ejector Over-and-Under Shotguns ordered by Sir Joseph Nickerson with Single Triggers. Set of 3 guns – #1 & #2 guns with Spare 26″

One of the great things about shooting old shotguns is the way they connect to the past. While you can read about history in books, with an old shotgun, you can feel it in your hands. The guns you see here offer those kinds of connections in very specific ways.

This trio of Purdey OUs was made for Sir Joseph Nickerson, one of the UK’s most famous shooters and author of the book A Shooting Man’s Creed. Nickerson started out shooting SxSs, but switched over to OUs, first Woodwards and then Purdeys.

 

J Purdey & Sons Pre-Owned Trio of 20 bore Sidelock Ejector Over-and-Under Shotguns ordered by Sir Joseph Nickerson with Single Triggers. Set of 3 guns - #1 & #2 guns with Spare 26"
J Purdey & Sons Pre-Owned Trio of 20 bore Sidelock Ejector Over-and-Under Shotguns ordered by Sir Joseph Nickerson with Single Triggers. Set of 3 guns – #1 & #2 guns with Spare 26″

J Purdey & Sons Pre-Owned Trio of 20 bore Sidelock Ejector Over-and-Under Shotguns ordered by Sir Joseph Nickerson with Single Triggers. Set of 3 guns – #1 & #2 guns with Spare 26. In our Dallas Showroom: Triggers: Single, Safety: Automatic Barrels: Barrel Length: 26″ with extra set of barrels for number 1 & 2 gun. Chamber: 2 3/4″. Rib: Solid Tapered. Chokes: Right: Improved Cylinder Left 1/2. Stock: Type: Deluxe grade Walnut, Length: 15″. Bend: 1 1/2″ – 1 5/8″. Grip: Half pistol grip. Butt End Finish: Chequered. Forend: Game. Engraving: Description: Rose & Scroll Finish: Case Colour Finish. Case: Leather Motor. Date of Manufacture: 1978. Price: $205,000

Important & rare DHE 20ga 30" made for Famous Parker shooter Guy Lovelace w/Spec. features:
Important & rare DHE 20ga 30″ made for Famous Parker shooter Guy Lovelace w/Spec. features:

Guy Lovelace was a successful southern California trap shooter back in the days when target shooting was covered in major newspapers the same way NBA games are covered today.

Important & rare DHE 20ga 30" made for Famous Parker shooter Guy Lovelace w/Spec. features:
Important & rare DHE 20ga 30″ made for Famous Parker shooter Guy Lovelace w/Spec. features:

Important & rare DHE 20ga 30″ made for Famous Parker shooter Guy Lovelace w/Spec. features: Very rare Parker DHE 20ga with original 30″ barrels made for famed Parker Shooter Guy Lovelace and shipped to Tufts Lyon Co. in Los Angeles, CA for Guy Lovelace. Lovelace is easily googled and found in many shooting results as a champion shooter. He is also pictured on the rare Parker Bros 1905 calendar! I have some research and photos on email to go along with the gun to the successful purchaser.  Made on a “0” frame with splinter forend, straight stock, double triggers and original skeleton buttplate. This gun with several special order features which are mentioned in the PGCA letter (photo included), most importantly is the forend checkering which calls for the forend to be checkered all over- this is the only factory original fully checkered original DHE 20ga I have seen. It also has wood that is just stunning – showing incredible fiddleback and color. The gun remains in pleasing untouched original condition with about 20% original case color. Barrels are excellent with about 75% original toned blue. The stocks are sound (no cracks) and retain about 85% of their original finish wish scattered handling marks from time in the blind. Bores are brilliant and shiny. Mechanics are crisp. Price: $10,950

Let’s admire a beautiful old Purdey SxS shotgun…

Incredible island-lock hammergun by James Purdey, London
Incredible island-lock hammergun by James Purdey, London

I love old Purdeys, and when I take a look at the one you see here, I remember why. When this side-by-side was made around 1869, centerfire, breechloading shotguns like it were the latest-and-greatest thing. Even though its Henry Jones Screw-Grip Action looks primitive to us today, it was cutting-edge back then.

Incredible island-lock hammergun by James Purdey, London
Incredible island-lock hammergun by James Purdey, London

But even though this Purdey was built with the latest features from its era, it retains the understated, elegant looks that had made James Purdey’s firearms famous and that would define them throughout the 1800s and up to today.

Incredible island-lock hammergun by James Purdey, London
Incredible island-lock hammergun by James Purdey, London

The back-action, island locks on this gun are one of the features that make it special. So is the engraving, probably cut by Purdey’s house engraver at that time: James Lucas. The chiseled fences are also nice, and so is the teardrop shape to the triggerguard. What a gun!

Incredible island-lock hammergun by James Purdey, London
Incredible island-lock hammergun by James Purdey, London

This week’s 5 doubles you don’t want to miss …

PURDEY BEST SXS 20 GAUGE
PURDEY BEST SXS 20 GAUGE

PURDEY BEST SXS 20 GAUGE: COMPLETED 1935, #24333, 28″ SELF OPENER 009 AND 016 2 3/4 CHAMBERS, DOUBLE TRIGGER, EJECTORS, SPLINTER FOREARM, ENGLISH GRIP, MAKERS CASE, EXCELLENT CONDITION, 5 LBS 12 OZ, 2 1/4″ DAH, 1 9/16″ DAC, 15″ LOP. Price: $48,500

Brand new Chapuis Super Orion O/U C35 28Ga 30" barrels
Brand new Chapuis Super Orion O/U C35 28Ga 30″ barrels

Brand new Chapuis Super Orion O/U C35 28Ga 30″ barrels: A brand new Chapuis O/U with double triggers, straight grip and 30 “ barrels.  2 ¾” chambers, bores measure .550  with fixed chokes (Improved cyl – Improved modified). Round action  with trigger plate locks, Coin finish with English style engraving coverage with pheasants, partridges on the sides of the receiver and German Short Hair under receiver. The shotgun weighs 5 pounds 14 OZ . English stock in a nice piece of Turkish walnut with the following dimensions: 15 ½” LOP over ¼” wood plate,  1  ½”   and 2 ½”  drop and 3/8” cast off. As usual on a Chapuis product, the trunnions size , rear lump interlocking and locking surfaces are ample to insure an extremely long mechanical lifespan. I trust them enough to offer a lifetime mechanical warranty to the original owner. Price: $4,990

A.D.JANSEN OVER UNDER BOXLOCK EJECTOR 28 GAUGE
A.D.JANSEN OVER UNDER BOXLOCK EJECTOR 28 GAUGE

A.D.JANSEN OVER UNDER BOXLOCK EJECTOR 28 GAUGE: 26 3/4″,  IC AND FULL 2 3/4″, SOLID RIB, DOUBLE TRIGGER, EJECTORS, FIELD FOREARM, ENGLISH GRIP, CHECKERED BUTT, EXCELLENT CONDITION, 5LBS 6 OZ, 2 1/4″ DAH,1 3/8″ DAC, 14 1/2″ LOP. Price: $4,950

CONNECTICUT SHOTGUN LAUNCH EDITION RBL IN 20 GAUGE - ALL OPTIONS - 3X WOOD UPGRADE - NEW
CONNECTICUT SHOTGUN LAUNCH EDITION RBL IN 20 GAUGE – ALL OPTIONS – 3X WOOD UPGRADE – NEW

CONNECTICUT SHOTGUN LAUNCH EDITION RBL IN 20 GAUGE – ALL OPTIONS – 3X WOOD UPGRADE – NEW: Holland Style Self Opeing System. Beavertail forend. Cased with all accessories. Barrels are 28″ with 5 choke tubes. Weight of gun is g LBS 8 OZ. Shipping is $40. Stock dimensions follow. LOP – 14 3/4″, Drop at Comb – 1 1/2″, Drop at Heel – 2 1/2″ Price: $3,950

Bernardelli SXS, 28 GA, 26" barrel, double trigger ejectors
Bernardelli SXS, 28 GA, 26″ barrel, double trigger ejectors

Bernardelli SXS, 28 GA, 26″ barrel, double trigger ejectors: Full and Improved modified chokes. The stock is in very good condition, does have a few light handling marks on it, has been hunted with. The barrels and bore are in great condition. Barrel walls measure 5.84mm. The drop at the Heel measures 2-3/8″ and the drop at the comb measures 1-1/2″. Excellent overall condition. Price: $1,699.99

This week’s 5 doubles you don’t want to miss…

 

PURDEY BAR IN WOOD 12 GAUGE
PURDEY BAR IN WOOD 12 GAUGE

PURDEY BAR IN WOOD 12 GAUGE: MADE 1878 30″ DAMASCUS BARRELS 005 AND 025 CONSTRICTION MINIMUM WALL THICKNESS 30 THOU IN EACH BARREL NITRO PROOFED 2 3/4 DOUBLE TRIGGER EXTRACTORS SPLINTER FOREARM ENGLISH GRIP EXCELLENT ORIGINAL CONDITION WITH ALMOST ALL THE PATTERN ON THE BARRELS 80% CASE COLORS THE BEST TO COME TO MARKET IN SOME TIME 6LBS 10 OZ Price: $24,500

Winchester 21 Duck 12 Gauge
Winchester 21 Duck 12 Gauge

Winchester 21 Duck 12 Gauge: 32″ Chokes: F – F L.O.P. : 13 1/2″ Drop: 1 1/2″C x 2 1/4″H Weight: 7 lbs 11 oz Ser. #: 17803. Price: $8,950

Connecticut Shotgun RBL 28 Ga in case for sale
Connecticut Shotgun RBL 28 Ga in case for sale

Connecticut Shotgun RBL 28 Ga in case: It has a beautiful engraved cases colored receiver and English stock with 14 in LOP to front trigger. It has had Briley tubes added with receipt from Briley for $688. It will make a high-end gun for the field or clays. Price: $4,999.00

BROWNING BSS, 20GA, 28" Barrels, F/M, 1975
BROWNING BSS, 20GA, 28″ Barrels, F/M, 1975

BROWNING BSS, 20GA, 28″ Barrels, F/M, 1975: F/MOD, Single Non-Select Trigger,  SN#599B57, MFG: 1975.  This gun has seen Very Little Use, Fine Condition, Excellent Bores, Fine Walnut Checkered Wood. Price: $1599

Smith & Wesson ~ Elite Gold - Grade I ~ 20 Ga
Smith & Wesson ~ Elite Gold – Grade I ~ 20 Ga

Smith & Wesson ~ Elite Gold – Grade I ~ 20 Ga: It has 28 inch barrels with ejectors and a solid rib.  A white bead front sight and a brass middle bead.  3 inch chambers with fixed Imp.Cyl. and Mod. chokes.  A single trigger.  It has a checkered Grade III walnut round knob pistol grip stock and checkered Grade III walnut splinter forearm.  A scalloped boxlock action with color case hardened frame and light scroll engraving.  In as new condition. Manufacturer: Made in Turkey. Metal Condition: New. Wood Condition: New. Bore Condition: New. Stock Dimensions: LOP 14 1/2 inches. Weight: 6 lbs. 8 oz. Sights: White front bead. Brass middle bead. Chokes: Fixed Imp.Cyl. and Mod. Extras: Comes in its original cardboard box. Price: $1,429.97

Is a Parker comparable to a Purdey? A gunsmith’s speaks his mind…

JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE
JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE

Dewey Vicknair, gunsmith, gunmaker, and gun writer, uses his blog Vicknair Gunsmithing to speak his mind on everything from guns and gunmaking to elephants and ivory.

PARKER DH 8 GAUGE SUPER RARE NOT ANOTHER LIKE IT IN THE WORLD
PARKER DH 8 GAUGE SUPER RARE NOT ANOTHER LIKE IT IN THE WORLD

He’s a knowledgeable, opinionated guy, who doesn’t pull any punches. And his views are firearms are based on more than just books – they’re based on years of hands-on experience.

So when Dewey says something, I listen. Check out this piece for his opinion on how Best guns like Purdeys compare to production-made models like Parkers.

Incredible High Original Condition Parker C Grade Hammer Gun with 32" Bernard barrels:
Incredible High Original Condition Parker C Grade Hammer Gun with 32″ Bernard barrels:

Best vs. Production: The Debate (Apparently) Rages On

Apparently, the term “best gun” and what it means, is a subject of debate lately on certain gun forums.  While it is amusing (and a bit cringey) to hear people extoll Parker (or any other maker) as the “Purdey or Boss” of American guns, it’s simply not even remotely …

Read all of Dewey’s post now.

This week’s 5 doubles you don’t want to miss …

Joseph Manton SxS Flintolock 22-bore
Joseph Manton SxS Flintolock 22-bore

Joseph Manton SxS Flintolock 22-bore: Incredibly rare 22-bore, double-barreled, flintlock Sporting Gun, initially completed in 1815 and cased complete with the original Manton parts for the field conversion to percussion ignition, ca. 1820.   Weight: 5 Lbs 12 oz.   Stock Dimensions:
14 5/8”x 1 1/8”x 2 1/8”x straight. Superb 30” rebrowned Damascus barrels with no dents or dings, excellent bores (.599”/.599”) and walls (both .060”-.033”).  Joseph Manton Patent, Platinum-lined, touch holes. Manton Patent Stepped-in, and Inverted, Breeches which allowed for faster ignition in addition to directing rainwater away from the pan and toward a rectangular drain hole in the center of the breech allowing the water to flow out a hole in the bottom of the trigger plate just in front of the trigger guard bow. The Manton Patent Elevated Top Rib is engraved, “Joseph Manton’s New Improvements by His Majesty’s Patent”. Absolutely peerless quality locks, also loaded with Manton Patented features;  Cocks, reinforced at the neck, Patent Hammers (frizzen’s), Gravitating Stops, with platinum-inlaid counterweights, to prevent the cock accidentally falling during loading with cocks inadvertently left at full cock.  In addition to all these features,  included with the gun are the parts and tools for rapid field conversion to percussion ignition (can be accomplished in under 2 minutes for each lock), likely added by Manton, ca. 1820. Locks tight and mechanically perfect in every way. Tang screw, side nail, both cock screws, and left frizzen replaced by LDA. The iron mounts are all nicely engraved in the pattern common to Joe Manton sporting guns of the late flintlock, 1815 -1817, era. The Figured Walnut stock has a repair to the head done by LDA and an old minor repair to the wood just forward of the finial on the trigger plate.  Overall,  the stock is in fine condition showing minimal wear and no abuse. The whole is cased in an ultra-rare original, two-tiered (for a pair of Manton double flintlock sporting guns), Joseph Manton case complete with all period accessories and a proper original Trade Label from the 1815-17 period listing many of the Manton Patent features found on the gun. This extraordinarily rare gun represents the ultimate development of the British flintlock sporting gun by, arguably, the greatest British Gun maker who ever lived, having all of the best innovations present and in working order on a single firearm by Joseph Manton. Overall, mechanically perfect and in fine condition throughout with traces of original finish. Price: $75,000

PURDEY - BEST DELUXE EXTRA FINISH, TWO BARREL SET , 12 GAUGE/12 GAUGE
PURDEY – BEST DELUXE EXTRA FINISH, TWO BARREL SET , 12 GAUGE/12 GAUGE

PURDEY – BEST DELUXE EXTRA FINISH, TWO BARREL SET, 12 GAUGE/12 GAUGE:
29″ BARRELS, M/F CHOKED – 29″ BARRELS, SK/IC CHOKED – DOUBLE TRIGGERS – HINGED FRONT TRIGGER – ORNAMENTAL ENGRAVING – 3 1/4 TON PROOF – BEAVERTAIL FOREND & SPLINTER FOREND – TURKISH WALNUT STRAIGHT GRIP STOCK – CHECKERED BUTT – SIDE CLIP – 3RD FASTENER – RAISED MATTED RIB – MAKER’S LEATHER MOTOR CASE INCLUDED 7 LBS. 11 OZ. 14 3/4″ X 1 3/8″ X 2 1/4″. Price: $49,500  

Beretta AS-20EL 20g OU Shotgun
Beretta AS-20EL 20g OU Shotgun

Beretta AS-20EL OVER UNDER SHOTGUN (S 22364): 27 1/2″ barrels.  Ic/mod.  Solid rib.  Double triggers. Long length of pull to a checkered butt.  Straight grip.  All the good stuff.  5 lbs. 11oz.  One small depression in the stock (see photo) otherwise about perfect. Price: $8450

Perazzi MX28 (S138143) OU SHOTGUN
Perazzi MX28 (S138143) OU SHOTGUN

Perazzi MX28 (S138143) OU SHOTGUN: 28 guage. Ejectors: Yes. Condition: Good. Barrels: 30”. Stock Comb: 1 3/8”. Stock Heel: 2 1/8”. Fore End: English. LOP: 14 5/8”. Weight: 5lb 8oz. Single selective trigger.  Perfect bores.  Really pretty wood.  Few knicks and scratches but a dandy little bird gun. Comes with Perazzi hard case. Chokes: Briley. Price: $7950

PARKER BROS. 20 GAUGE VH - 26" BARRELS CHOKED FULL/FULL - STRAIGHT STOCK - DOUBLE TRIGGERS- SPLINTER FOREND -DOGS HEAD BUTT -CASE COLORS 45%
PARKER BROS. 20 GAUGE VH – 26″ BARRELS CHOKED FULL/FULL – STRAIGHT STOCK – DOUBLE TRIGGERS- SPLINTER FOREND -DOGS HEAD BUTT -CASE COLORS 45%

PARKER BROS. 20 GAUGE VH – 26″ BARRELS CHOKED FULL/FULL – STRAIGHT STOCK – DOUBLE TRIGGERS- SPLINTER FOREND -DOGS HEAD BUTT -CASE COLORS 45%: BLUE 90 % & – TRIGGER GAURD PATINA – CHECKERING VERY GOOD – ACTION TIGHT WITH TOP LEVER RIGHT OF CENTER – BLANK INITIAL SHEILD -LOP 14″ – DAC 1 7/16″ X DAH 2 1/16″ –  WEIGHS 6 LBS. 2 OZS. – ALL ORIGINAL CONDITION. Price: $4,500

This week’s 5 doubles you don’t want to miss …

F.lli Piotti King I Sidelock I 20 Gauge I Sidelock
F.lli Piotti King I Sidelock I 20 Gauge I Sidelock

F.lli Piotti King I Sidelock I 20 Gauge I Sidelock: 28″ Chokes: IC – M L.O.P. : 14 3/4″ Drop: 1 1/2″C x 2 1/4″H Weight: 6 lbs 4 oz Ser. #: 9189 Price: $25,900

PURDEY "LIGHTWEIGHT", 12 gauge, 1937
PURDEY “LIGHTWEIGHT”, 12 gauge, 1937

PURDEY “LIGHTWEIGHT”, 12 gauge, 1937: This little Purdey is amazing.  It is very close to the way it left the makers in 1937.  It is safe to say that the blue and case color show at least 90% of their original glow.  The barrels are 26″ with 2 5/8″ chambers, proofed for 1 1/8oz., choked cylinder and improved cylinder.  The stock measures 14 1/2″  with 1 1/2″ drop at comb and 2 1/2.” at heel.  The gun weighs 6 1/4 lbs.  Checkering is sharp and both stock and forend are sound, no blemishes or repairs.  This little gun hasn’t been out very much. Now for the wonderful surprise.  The case includes all of the original tools, unused.  As pictured, they include:  three turnscrews, oil bottle, bore and chamber brushes, a field pull through, various small brushes and a stuck case remover, all in their leather pouches.  There is a spare set of firing pins, with their springs, housed in an ivory bottle. And the case is original for the gun. Reduced price is firm and includes 2 flats of RST ammo. Price: $22,500

Parker - GHE, 12ga, 100% New:
Parker – GHE, 12ga, 100% New:

Parker – GHE, 12ga, 100% New: 30” barrels choked Mod./Full, 1 ½ frame, late Parker/Remington production that is 100% new with very minor handling marks. Double trigger, automatic ejector, pistol grip, long length of pull, original factory pad. One of the highest conditioned guns we have ever owned. Collector quality, guaranteed authentic. It has all of the original trigger guard blue and even the forend has all the original case color. This gun is just new, untouched and authentic. If you are looking for the best, here it is. Price: $14,995

WINCHESTER MODEL 21 PRE WAR 16 GAUGE
WINCHESTER MODEL 21 PRE WAR 16 GAUGE

WINCHESTER MODEL 21 PRE WAR 16 GAUGE: #67XX, 26″ IC AND MOD 2 3/4″, SINGLE SELECT TRIGGER, EJECTORS, BEAVERTAIL FOREARM, ENGLISH GRIP, CHECKERED BUTT, MINTY ORIGINAL CONDITION, 6LBS 14 OZ, 2 7/16″ DAH, 1 9/16″ DAC, 14 1/2″ LOP Price: $7,950

A.H.Fox 16ga. Sterlingworth 30" Barrels
A.H.Fox 16ga. Sterlingworth 30″ Barrels

A.H.Fox 16ga. Sterlingworth 30″ Barrels: Built-in Philadelphia in 1926. This gun has the hard to find 30″ barrels choked modified .015″ and full .035″.The gun is in outstanding all original condition. It retains 98% of the original case colors, 99% of the original barrel blue, and 98% of the original wood finish. All screws are still timed and appear to be unturned. The bores are mint with no dents, rust, or pits. The stock is sound with no cracks or damage. The top lever is far to the right and the barrels lock up with no play. This gun has been shot very little. I used it on doves this season and it handles and patterns beautifully. At 6 lbs 2 ounces, it would make a great walk up pheasant gun. Very hard to find in the configuration and condition. Price: $2995

This week’s 5 doubles you don’t want to miss…

 

Beautiful James Purdey 16ga Self Opener -- 29" 1908 gun
Beautiful James Purdey 16ga Self Opener — 29″ 1908 gun

Beautiful James Purdey 16ga Self Opener — 29″ 1908 gun: Ic/Ic .006/.010 — 1908 Best quality and Cased with original trade label and charge card — 2 1/2 ” lightweight gun 5lbs 13oz — super engraving that still shows a considerable amount of original color — straight hand stock with excellent dimensions 14 1/4  1 1/2 x  2 3/16  to checked butt. A wonderful gun to carry afield. The heyday of Purdey production. .028 thous in both tubes. This little gun carries like a 28ga. Gun is in the Purdey log book as listed. 14 1/4″ x 1 1/2 ” x  2 3/16″  checkered butt. 5lbs 13oz. Price: $29,500

1926 AH FOX CE 20 Gauge, 28" Chromox Fluid Compressed Steel bbls., 100% Original:
1926 AH FOX CE 20 Gauge, 28″ Chromox Fluid Compressed Steel bbls., 100% Original:

1926 AH FOX CE 20 Gauge, 28″ Chromox Fluid Compressed Steel bbls., 100% Original: SxS boxlock w/ Game scene engraved case hardened action, 28″ Chromox Fluid Compressed Steel bbls. w/ 2 1/2″ chambers, Filed concave rib w/ double ivory beads, Chokes: Right .621 / .009 / M & Left .623 / .021 / F, Double triggers, Automatic ejectors, Automatic safety, Well figured straight grip stock w/ original buttplate, Splinter forearm, Stock Dimensions: DC: 1 9/16″ x DH: 2 7/8″ x Cast: 3/8″ OFF at Heel x LOP: 14 3/4″, Weight: 5 lb. 13 oz., Condition: 100% Original unaltered condition, 99%+ Original Blue, case colors and stock finish, Made in USA circa 1926, Serial #202682. Price: $20,000.

WEBLEY & SCOTT DOUBLE RIFLE IN .250-3000 CALIBER IN IT'S ORIGINAL LEATHER CASE
WEBLEY & SCOTT DOUBLE RIFLE IN .250-3000 CALIBER IN IT’S ORIGINAL LEATHER CASE

WEBLEY & SCOTT DOUBLE RIFLE IN .250 3000 CALIBER IN IT’S ORIGINAL LEATHER CASE: .250-3000 Savage caliber, 28″ barrels with five-leaf express sight.  Engraved and casehardened  Anson and Deeley box lock receiver.  Top lever, extractors, and double triggers.  Checkered splinter forend and pistol grip buttstock with cheekpiece and leather pad.   LOP: 14 1/4″. Weight: 8lbs 6oz.   In beautiful original condition retaining all of the barrel blue, vivid case colors and excellent stock and checkering.  Mint bores. In it’s original leather luggage case with canvas cover. Price: $18,500

CONNECTICUT SHOTGUN MFG CO RBL LAUNCH EDITION 20GA S/S SHOTGUN
CONNECTICUT SHOTGUN MFG CO RBL LAUNCH EDITION 20GA S/S SHOTGUN

CONNECTICUT SHOTGUN MFG CO RBL LAUNCH EDITION 20GA S/S SHOTGUN: CASE COLORED ACTION WITH SCROLL, 28″ BBLS, 2 3/4, MULTI CHOKES, STANDARD RIB, EJECTORS, SST, 3X WALNUT STOCK, PISTOL GRIP, SMALL BEAVERTAIL FOREND, LOP 14 3/8, 1 1/2, 2 3/8, 6LBS 9OZ, CASED WITH ALL ACCESSORIES, AS NEW! Price: $3,695

A & F - 1970 - F.lli. Rizzini - BLNE 20ga, 26", 3", IC / M
A & F – 1970 – F.lli. Rizzini – BLNE 20ga, 26″, 3″, IC / M

A & F – 1970 – F.lli. Rizzini – BLNE 20ga, 26″, 3″, IC / M: Extractors, Double Triggers, Prince or Wales Grip, LOP 14-3/4″, Drop 1-1/2″ to 2-5/8″, Neutral Cast, Weight 5 lbs. 15 oz. Price: $2650

This week’s 5 doubles you don’t want to miss…

PURDEY BEST HAMMER PIGEON GUN SXS 12 GAUGE
PURDEY BEST HAMMER PIGEON GUN SXS 12 GAUGE

PURDEY BEST HAMMER PIGEON GUN SXS 12 GAUGE: #17XXX, ORIGINAL 30″ STEEL BARRELS 027 AND 036 2 3/4″, DOUBLE TRIGGER, EXTRACTORS, SPLINTER FOREARM, ENGLISH GRIP, MINTY ORIGINAL CONDITION, 8LBS, 2 3/16″ DAH, 1 3/8″ DAC, 15 1/4″ LOP. Price: $42,500

Webley & Scott M701 (M700) - 16 Gauge:
Webley & Scott M701 (M700) – 16 Gauge:

Webley & Scott M701 (M700) – 16 Gauge: This Webley, serial number 131366, has strong case color and bluing and the wood is in excellent condition showing minimal signs of use. The right barrels is marked “Webley & Scott Ltd.” while the left barrel is marked “Birmingham”.  The barrels sport a single, silver bead. It has the following attributes: Barrel Length: 28”: Choked: Imp Cyl / Full, Ejectors, Overall weight:  6lb 2oz, LOP: 14-5/8”, DAC: 1-3/8”, DAH: 2-1/8”. Price: $3,195 

Fabrique National 16 gauge side by side sidelock shotgun
Fabrique National 16 gauge side by side sidelock shotgun

Fabrique National 16 gauge side by side sidelock shotgun: 30″ demi bloc barrels, 2 3/4″ chamber, Ejectores, Modify & full shocks. English straight stock LOP 14 1/8″ to front trigger. Mirror Bores. Shotgun is tight with or without the forearm. Barrels have some finish scratches as well as the stock, very good checkering, mechanical is excellent, ejectors are strong and on time. triggers are strong and crisp. weight 6.75 lb. Price: $2,995

BERETTA - Orvis Uplander - 686 Onyx - 26-1/2" IC /M - Like New:
BERETTA – Orvis Uplander – 686 Onyx – 26-1/2″ IC /M – Like New:

BERETTA – Orvis Uplander – 686 Onyx – 26-1/2″ IC /M – Like New: 20ga, 3″, 26-1/2″, IC / M (.017 / .029), LOP 14-3/8″, Drop 1-3/8″ to 2-1/4″, Slight Cast Off, Weight 5 lbs. 14 oz. MINT – As New! Appears unfired. I think this was a leftover from the Orvis Shop. They didn’t have any high grade wood for it, so they ordered up a standard set of wood from Beretta. Price: $1675 

FRENCH GUILD 16GA SXS BOXLOCK SHOTGUN
FRENCH GUILD 16GA SXS BOXLOCK SHOTGUN

FRENCH GUILD 16GA SXS BOXLOCK SHOTGUN A wonderful 16ga French Guild gun. Ready for forest range or field. No issues! Nice wood. Great barrels. Locks up tight. Functions well.
Chambers: 65MM, Condition: VERY GOOD, Metal Condition: VERY GOOD, Wood Condition: VERY GOOD, Bore Condition: BRIGHT, Barrels: 27IN, Gauge: 16GA, Stock Comb: 1 1/2IN, Stock Heel: 2 1/16IN, Butt Pad: LEATHER PAD, LOP: 14 1/2IN, Weight: 5LBS 15OZ, Choke Left: SKEET II, Choke Right: SKEET. Price: $875

This week’s 5 doubles your don’t want to miss …

PURDEY BEST QUALITY OVER UNDER PAIR 16 GAUGE KELL ENGRAVED
PURDEY BEST QUALITY OVER UNDER PAIR 16 GAUGE KELL ENGRAVED

PURDEY BEST QUALITY OVER UNDER PAIR 16 GAUGE KELL ENGRAVED: PURDEY SAYS MADE 1949, NOTED IN RECORDS ENGRAVED BY  KELL, BOTH GUNS ARE THE SAME: 28″ SOLID RIB, CHOKED 012″ AND 032″, 2 1/2 CHAMBERS, SINGLE TRIGGER, EJECTORS, FIELD FOREARM, ENGLISH GRIP, MAKERS OAK AND LEATHER CASE, EXCELLENT ORIGINAL CONDITION, 6LBS 5 OZ, 2 1/2″ DAH, 1 5/8″ DAC, 14″ LOP FROM REAR POSITION SINGLE TRIGGER. Price: $139,500

Colt 1878 Grade 8 SxS Hammer Gun
Colt 1878 Grade 8 SxS Hammer Gun

Colt 1878 Grade 8 SxS Hammer Gun: Serial Number: 20648, Barrels: 30 inches, Triggers: Double Triggers, Gauge: 12 Gauge, Fore End: Splinter, LOP: 14 /14 inches, Weight: 7 lbs. 10 oz. Price: $24,500

Extremely Rare Sir Joseph Whitworth .451 Percussion Double Rifle With Hexagonal Bore
Extremely Rare Sir Joseph Whitworth .451 Percussion Double Rifle With Hexagonal Bore

Extremely Rare Sir Joseph Whitworth .451 Percussion Double Rifle With Hexagonal Bore, and Case: Extremely Rare Sir Joseph Whitworth Percussion Double Rifle with Hexagonal .451 Bores with case, and powder flask.  Very few were produced, and it is said that no more than 50 were made in total.  Possibly fewer. Whitworth’s single-shot rifles were prized by Confederate sharpshooters during the Civil War and were also used extensively in target shooting in the apex of the percussion rifle era. Parker Hale continues to market reproductions as to the Target rifle variants with the correct Hexagonal rifling. (I took a very large bull elk, quite cleanly, with one of these reproductions, before I owned this double!)  Far fewer Sporting rifles were produced by Whitworth, and, again, fewer still of the double rifle variety. These double’s barrels were produced from a single piece of bar stock which Whitworth bored. A very unusual method of production, but extremely effective when done right, and Whitworth was one of England’s most renowned machinists.  Hex bullets can be used of course, or, more commonly, people use .451 +/- conical bullets that simply bump up to hex shape upon firing.  These are very effective hunting rifles as the bullets have great sectional density when weighing 485-500 grains or so. This provides almost the perfect combination of bullet diameter and penetration.   Bullet molds are quite common in this configuration. Most users recommend a powder charge of approximately 90-95 grains of FF Black powder.  This example shows honest use, but was maintained properly, and is in excellent condition overall, as is it’s original case. Mechanically and functionally excellent, and very good as to appearance is the way I would grade this example.  Folding sights in 100-yard increments to 500 yards. Test targets are included showing how well this rifle’s barrels are regulated at both 50 and 100 yards, and the powder charge and bullet type used to achieve these tight groups. Bores are excellent, and show little if any frosting whatsoever.  Stock shows numerous handling marks and scratches, but no cracks or splits. Stock has pistol grip cap of steel, and a silver stock oval which is not yet engraved.  Rifle’s Bluing is browning on the tang, the locks and receiver, and is quite good on the buttplate. Barrels also quite good as to blue. Some Scattered scratches and handling marks in the barrel bluing. Locks and triggers work perfectly. Ramrod correct for rifle, and there is a period powder flask in the case. Weighs 9 pounds 8 ounces, and balances well.  The pictures tell the story, but feel free to contact me with questions. Try to find another! 🙂 For those with genuine interest, more photos can be supplied. A truly special rifle for the percussion enthusiast. Thanks for looking! Price: $19,999

PRUSSIAN CHARLES DALY - TIME CAPSULE CONDITION - MADE IN 1932 - EJECTORS - 30" BARRELS
PRUSSIAN CHARLES DALY – TIME CAPSULE CONDITION – MADE IN 1932 – EJECTORS – 30″ BARRELS

PRUSSIAN CHARLES DALY – TIME CAPSULE CONDITION – MADE IN 1932 – EJECTORS – 30″ BARRELS: Here is a Prussian Charles Daly 12 gauge made in 1932 with exceptional condition. Superior Quality with Krupp Steel Barrels. Original condition throughout. Strong case colors. Detailed scroll engraving. Scalloped action. Cocking indicators. Ejectors. Arcaded fences. Double underbite with a Greener Style Hidden Third Fastener. Auto safety. Elegant stock with Prince of Wales Round Grip. Tight on face / no loose ribs / 30″ barrels ring perfectly / no cracks to wood. Mirror bores with right measuring at .727 with 37/1000 choke (Full). Left measures .735 with 48/1000 choke (Extra Full). Chambers are 2 3/4″. Shipping is $40. Original basketweave butt plate. Stock dimensions: LOP – 14 3/8″, Drop at Comb – 1 1/2″, Drop at Heel – 2 1/2″. Price: $5,500 

 

Emile Warnant - Liege Belgium - Excellent Quality - Sidelock Ejector - 1925 Gun - 28" Bbls - 2-3/4" Chambers for sale
Emile Warnant – Liege Belgium – Excellent Quality – Sidelock Ejector – 1925 Gun – 28″ Bbls – 2-3/4″ Chambers for sale

Emile Warnant – Liege Belgium – Excellent Quality – Sidelock Ejector – 1925 Gun – 28″ Bbls – 2-3/4″ Chambers: Well Made Side Lock Ejector in Very Nice Condition at a Reasonable Price. (.015 / .027), Ejector Bbls, Raised Solid Rib, Hidden Third Bite, Bushed Firing Pins, Double Triggers – Front Articulated, English Stock, LOP 14-3/8″, Drop 1-1/2″ to 2-1/8″, Weight 6 lbs. 13 oz. Price: $2450 

If you could only own 3 doubles, which would you pick?

If you could only own 3 double-barrel shotguns, which ones would you pick? This isn’t a question I want to face, but if I had to, my answer would be:

PURDEY - BAR IN WOOD 12 GAUGE
PURDEY – BAR IN WOOD 12 GAUGE

A 12-gauge hammergun like this JAMES PURDEY & SON BAR IN WOOD. I’ve always been fascinated by old school SxS shotguns. I’ve shot these SxSs, and every time I pull back the hammers I feel like I’m traveling back in time. I love how hammerguns do this and link you to a style of gunmaking and to a sporting world that’s long gone now.

LEBEAU COURALLY 12 1932 SIDELOCK EJECT 30" WHITWORTH CHOPPER LUMP Bbls. TOTALLY ORIG. AFTER 86 YEARS VERY NICE WOOD BUILT as a PIGEON GUN.
LEBEAU COURALLY 12 1932 SIDELOCK EJECT 30″ WHITWORTH CHOPPER LUMP Bbls. TOTALLY ORIG. AFTER 86 YEARS VERY NICE WOOD BUILT as a PIGEON GUN.

A true pigeon gun like this LEBEAU COURALLY 12 1932 SIDELOCK EJECT 30″ WHITWORTH CHOPPER LUMP Bbls. TOTALLY ORIG. AFTER 86 YEARS VERY NICE WOOD BUILT as a PIGEON GUN. Pigeon guns were built for competitive live pigeon shoots. These shoots were — and are — serious business. Up until around WW1, they were as popular as today’s professional sports and newspapers reported on them the same way they cover NFL games are today. Top competitors won thousands of dollars and demanded that their guns were built to withstand thousands and thousands of shots without fail.

LINSEY BROTHERS, LEEDS ENGLAND - CASED for sale.
LINSEY BROTHERS, LEEDS ENGLAND – CASED for sale.

A lightweight, 12g game gun like this LINSEY BROTHERS, LEEDS ENGLAND – CASED for sale. As an upland hunter, I carry my gun far more than I shoot it. So I like to hunt grouse and woodcock with a gun that weighs around 6 1/4 pounds. But I also like the proportions of a 12 gauge (most of the time, anything smaller than a 16 feels too small). Twelve-gauge ammo is also easy to come by, and it comes in all sorts of loads. So with one gun, I can hunt quail on Monday, pheasants on Tuesday, and grouse the rest of the week (in theory, anyway), and I can always use ammo that’s just the day’s game.

A first time for me: a 20g P.V. Nelson sidelock …

 

P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS
P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS

Here’s something I’ve never seen before: it’s a Peter V. Nelson shotgun for sale on the open market.

Peter Nelson is one of the world’s greatest gunmakers. He also a gunmaker few people know anything about.

P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS
P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS

Nelson started his career in the 1950s as an actioner at James Purdey & Sons. From there, he worked on guns for Hartmann & Weiss. In 1989, he went out on his own and built guns under his own name. I think he retired from gunmaking in 2012. This Queen’s Golden Jubilee Gun was one of the last firearms he built.

According to Vic Venters, Nelson built around 84 guns in all. Nine clients commissioned these guns; two clients ordered around 60 of them. I believe a few of these guns have changed hands over the years, but it was always done with just a phone call. These guns were not advertised anywhere or on display at a gunshow or in a gunshop. Take a look at the craftsmanship of the SXS show here, you can see why.

P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS
P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS

P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS: KEITH THOMAS ENGRAVED, MADE 1991, ROUNDED ACTION, 28″ 006 AND 006 2 3/4″, 26″ 009 AND 009 2 3/4″,  SINGLE TRIGGER, EJECTORS, BEAVERTAIL FOREARM, ENGLISH GRIP, CHECKERED BUTT, EXCELLENT WITH HANDLING MARKS IN THE WOOD, 5LBS 10 OZ, 2 1/2″ DAH,1 1/2″ DAC, 14 1/4″ LOP. Price: $57,500

P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS
P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS
P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS
P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS
P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS
P.V. NELSON BEST SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE WITH EXTRA BARRELS

The Game Hog of Dallowgill, an article from Sports Illustrated, 5/22/1972…

Frederick Robinson, 2nd Marquess of Ripon was one of the UK’s most famous game shots. In his lifetime, he bagged more than 500,000 birds, plus countless hares and other animals. and he shot Purdey hammerguns, including this one shown here: J Purdey & Sons, a RARE 12-BORE HAMMER EJECTOR GUN, NO. 14981, BUILT IN 1895 FOR LORD RIPON (AS EARL DE GREY).

Sports Illustrated published a piece about Lord Ripon way back 1972. An excerpt is below, along with links to the entire article. It’s an interesting read and worth checking out.

Frederick Oliver Robinson, 2nd Marquess of Ripon © National Portrait Gallery, London
Frederick Oliver Robinson, 2nd Marquess of Ripon © National Portrait Gallery, London

THE GAME HOG OF DALLOWGILL

IN A LIFETIME OF WARFARE AGAINST THE WINGED KINGDOM, LORD RIPON DOWNED MORE THAN 500,000 BIRDS

Studley Royal, 1880, Lord Ripon's home
Studley Royal, 1880, Lord Ripon’s home

“At the top of the hill a pair of liveried Yorkshire gamekeepers whacked hard with their sticks at the tight thorn-bushes of the hedgerow. Fifty yards away, in a hollow, stood the owner of the land, with his shooting companion, the local vicar. As the keepers moved forward, there was a flap of bright wings, a shot, and the quarry spun to the ground. Then another type of prey emerged, flying low and fast toward the waiting guns. Again a clean kill. So, at the end of the drive, one butterfly and one bumblebee were solemnly added to the day’s bag …”

Read all of THE GAME HOG OF DALLOWGILL

This week’s 5 doubles you don’t want to miss…

 

Parker Brothers ~ A-1 Special ~ 20 Ga. 
Parker Brothers ~ A-1 Special ~ 20 Ga.

Parker Brothers ~ A-1 Special ~ 20 Ga: S/N 158XXX – Circa 1912, Chambers: 2 3/4″ with Ejectors, Barrels: 28″, Stock Dimensions: 14″ LOP – DAC 1 11/16″ – DAH 2 1/4″, Butt Pad: Engraved Skeleton, Weight: 6 LB. Wood shows a bit of age cracking with a couple of small storage marks and a bit of moisture damage to the right side of the buttstock. Blue remains at 100% with mint bores. Receiver shows 100% rose and scroll engraving coverage that remains excellent. Truly a remarkable example of the gunmakers art! Complete with a Parker Collectors “Letter of Originality”. Price: $79,999.99 

BOSS & Co Best SLE 20ga 26" IC&M Original 2 3/4" chambers, Makers leather case, Mfg 1947, rare and very nice
BOSS & Co Best SLE 20ga 26″ IC&M Original 2 3/4″ chambers, Makers leather case, Mfg 1947, rare and very nice

BOSS & Co Best SLE 20ga 26″ IC&M Original 2 3/4″ chambers, Makers leather case, Mfg 1947, rare and very nice: Serial #  8764, Barrel Length: 26″, Choke R  IC(.005), Choke L  M(.011), Trigger  ST (Single), Rib Type  Smooth Concave Rib, Receiver Finish:  Casehardened with most colors remaining, Engraving Type:  Boss style Fine Scroll & Rosette Engraving, Other Options:  Makers case with label, Original 2 3/4″ chambers, Condition  EXC. Plus Condition. Weight  5lbs 7oz. Dimensions  1 3/8 x 2 3/8 x 14 3/4 with 1/4 cast off. Other Details  Mfg 1947, Very high condition  Very hard to find in 20ga. Price: $59,000

J. Purdey & Sons - 12ga - SLE - Self Opener - 25” Barrels - .732/.729 Chokes - 2 3/4” Shells - 15 1/8” x 1 5/8” x 2 3/4” - 6 lbs 2 ozs - Lightweight!! 
J. Purdey & Sons – 12ga – SLE – Self Opener – 25” Barrels – .732/.729 Chokes – 2 3/4” Shells – 15 1/8” x 1 5/8” x 2 3/4” – 6 lbs 2 ozs – Lightweight!!

J. Purdey & Sons – 12ga – SLE – Self Opener – 25” Barrels – .732/.729 Chokes – 2 3/4” Shells – 15 1/8” x 1 5/8” x 2 3/4” – 6 lbs 2 ozs – Lightweight!! Self Opener – Great Quail & Grouse Gun – Fast Action Gun!  Original case and proof label – “WTC” on leather case and on stock – “Blue” Pins and hightlights on the Action – lever is plum.  This Purdey is Tight and handles gracefully in high-pressure shooting situations. The gun was a 2 1/2” gun and was sent back to Purdey to be Re-Proofed and opened up to 2 3/4” – performs beautifully! Price: $34,995

John Wilkes, 20ga. Sidelock Ejector 27" Barrels:
John Wilkes, 20ga. Sidelock Ejector 27″ Barrels:

John Wilkes, 20ga. Sidelock Ejector 27″ Barrels Ic/Mod: A custom stocked gun in England with an extremely high quality Turkish Circassian walnut with a straight grip, splinter forend, highest quality full sidelock gun double triggers, automatic ejector, checkered butt, full coverage miniature rose bouquet and scroll engraving Cast for a lefthanded shooter (we can adjust it back to neutral), gold oval, gun remains in pristine condition throughout, includes leather makers’ case with canvas cover, available for immediate delivery. LOP – 15 1/8” x 1 ½” x 2 3/8”. 5 lb., 12 oz. Price: $19,999

Magnificent Remington Parker VHE 16ga 1 frame with Condition
Magnificent Remington Parker VHE 16ga 1 frame with Condition

Magnificent Remington Parker VHE 16ga 1 frame with Condition: 28″ Mod/full and factory marked — incredible original wood and finishes — perfect screws — double triggers — 2 3/4 ” factory chambers — ejectors — 80% original color that is vibrant — 99% blue and varnish — late single line DHBP — splinter forend — Just a wonderful Remington era gun that has all of the zing you expect from Parker — A perfect gun for all occasions afield with the right dimensions and weight.
14 1/4″  1 1/2″ x 2 3/8″  7lb 3oz. Price: $6,950.00 

Wow – an awesome Purdey Pigeon gun…

JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE
JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE

When people talk about the very best shotguns, this is what they have in mind. The Purdey SxS you see here is one of the finest I’ve seen, and it’s in superb condition.

JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE
JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE

This gun is a great example of what a true Best-quality shotgun should be. Overall, it has a distinct look — handsome and proud, but not gaudy or ostentatious. Metal-to-metal and metal-to-wood fit is as perfect as it gets, all around. The action and little things like the toplever are filed up beautifully. And the stock and forend are shaped and proportioned perfectly. And check out those drop points.

JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE
JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE

Because it’s all original, this SxS is also a great example of how a gun from that period was finished. Look closely. See how the hinge pin, safety, and screw in the toplever are all a bright blue, while the toplever itself, as well as the triggerguard and forend iron are an inkier blue to almost black? Now see how the blueing on the barrels has turned a purplish hue over time. This mix of finishes is a big part of what makes these old, original shotguns so beautiful — and desirable.

JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE
JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE

Also, check out how the action looks a bit dull and dirty overall. That’s because it was varnished when new to protect the color-case hardening. Much of that original varnish remains, and over the last 80+ years, it has yellowed a bit, picked up some grime, and lost its sheen.

JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE
JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE

Made for live-pigeon shooting, it was built in in the 1930s — one of the best periods for British shotguns. As crazy as it seems, it’s gun #3 of at least a trio. Perhaps that’s why it was never used — the owner had two others just like it to go to first.

JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE-WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE: #24XXX, 30″ SELF OPENING, CHOKED .041″ AND .041″, CHAMBERS 2 3/4″, DOUBLE TRIGGER, EJECTORS, SPLINTER FOREARM, ENGLISH GRIP, MAKER’S CASE, MINT ORIGINAL CONDITION, 7LBS 6 OZ, 2″ DAH, 1 9/16″ DAC, 14 3/4″ LOP. Price: $47,500

JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE
JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE
JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE
JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE
JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE
JAMES PURDEY & SONS BEST PRE WAR PIGEON GUN 12 GAUGE

This week’s 5 doubles you don’t want to miss…

 

Armi Ivo Fabbri ~ Majestic Engraved ~ OU ~ 12 Ga
Armi Ivo Fabbri ~ Majestic Engraved ~ OU ~ 12 Ga

Armi Ivo Fabbri ~ Majestic Engraved ~ OU ~ 12 Ga: Made in 1972 and engraved with their “Majestic” pattern. Serial number 3198. Metal Condition: excellent. Wood Condition: excellent. Bore Condition: shiny. Barrels: 28. Trigger: single select. Stock Dimensions: 14.25″ LOP 1.5″ DAH 1.25″ DAC. Butt Pad: rubber recoil pad. Weight: 7lbs 6ozs. Sights: two beads. Cokes: Full and Modified fixed chokes. Price: $39,999.99 

James Purdey BEST Sidelock in 16g with 30" original chopperlump barrels ~ Oak & Leather cased
James Purdey BEST Sidelock in 16g with 30″ original chopperlump barrels ~ Oak & Leather cased

James Purdey BEST Sidelock in 16g with 30″ original chopperlump barrels ~ Oak & Leather cased: Hammerless Sidelocks – Stunning 16g. with excellent barrels! Serial Number: 19180. Ejectors: Yes. Barrels: 29″. Action: Sidelock self-opener. Gauge: 16 gauge. Stock Comb: 1 7/16. Stock Heel: 2 1/8″. Stock Cast: 1/8″. LOP: 14 1/16″ to checkered butt. Weight: 5 lbs. 14 oz. Choke Left: .005″ Skeet. Choke Right: Cyl. Proof: Nitro 2 1/2″. Minimum Wall Thickness Left: .026″. Minimum Wall Thickness Right: .028″. Price: $16,900

Miller & Val. Greiss 20 Gauge O/U Trap Gun with 34” Bohler Special Steel Barrels
Miller & Val. Greiss 20 Gauge O/U Trap Gun with 34” Bohler Special Steel Barrels

Miller & Val. Greiss 20 Gauge O/U Trap Gun with 34” Bohler Special Steel Barrels: Handsome and unique German made 20-gauge trap gun with 34” Bohler Special Steel barrels and lots of engraving and case coloring. Stocked in a beautiful highly figured European walnut stock. The gun is marked Miller & Val. Greiss   Munchen who was a gunmaker that handmade fabulous quality shotguns and rifles from the late 19th century until the early 1930’s. The 34” Bohler Steel barrels are slender as is the forearm. It has double triggers, automatic ejectors, and a Kersten cross bolt. The gun weighs 7lb 13oz and handles like a dream. The 34” Bohler Special Steel 20-gauge barrels are chambered for 2-3/4” shotshells. Topped by a raised solid tapered crosshatched rib. The rib has front and middle beads. The under barrel is bored 0.628 and has a constriction of 0.035 for Full choke. The upper barrel is also bored 0.628 with a constriction of 0.035 for Full choke. Precise German manufacturing.   ***   The stock and two-piece forearm are made from highly figured walnut with intricate carvings and sharp checkering. Recently refinished there are just a few handling marks from normal usage. Stock dimensions are 14-1/2” over a 5/8” pad by 1-1/2” by 2-3/8”.   ***   I have never seen another like it. Well made and sturdy but very responsive. Would be a lot of fun to shoot on clays, trap or dove. Price: $9,850

Winchester Model 21 SxS, 12ga, 32" barrels, FULL/FULL
Winchester Model 21 SxS, 12ga, 32″ barrels, FULL/FULL

Winchester Model 21 SxS, 12ga, 32″ barrels, FULL/FULLEarly gun with four-digit serial number: double trigger, extractor, solid rib, splinter forend, 14 3/4″ LOP over a solid red Winchester rubber pad. Slight blue wear on the bottom of the receiver and trigger bow. This is a nice long barreled field gun. Price: $3,995

Browning Citori Superlight OU, Grade1 16 gauge
Browning Citori Superlight OU, Grade1 16 gauge

Browning Citori Superlight OU, Grade1 16 gaugeAs new in box, never fired. 26” barrels, 3 Invector Choke Tubes: IC, MOD and FULL. Original box w/papers. Built in 1994. Price: $1,900

This week’s 5 doubles you don’t want to miss…

 

J. Purdey & Sons - Best - Ultra Round Body - 20 ga - Over Under Shotgun
J. Purdey & Sons – Best – Ultra Round Body – 20 ga – Over Under Shotgun

J. Purdey & Sons – Best – Ultra Round Body – 20 ga – Over Under ShotgunSerial #29778, Ejectors: Yes, Trigger: Single, Grip: Rounded Pistol Grip, Lop: 15 1/4 “, Pad thickness: 0.75 “, Type of butt: Leather Covered Pad, Drop at comb: 1 3/8 “, Drop at heel: 2”, Cast amount: 1/4 “, OFF, Weight: 7 lbs, 2 oz, Manufactured in 2001, Overall condition: Very Good, Stock: Original finish, Metal: Original finish, Gauge: 20 ga, Chambers: 2 3/4″, Length: 30”, Chokes: M/IM, Rib type: Solid, Comments : Bulino Game Scene engraved by Giancarlo Pedretti. Price: $140,000

James Woodward & Sons ~ London Best~ Pair ~ 12 Ga
James Woodward & Sons ~ London Best~ Pair ~ 12 Ga

James Woodward & Sons ~ London Best~ Pair ~ 12 Ga: Metal Condition: excellent, Wood Condition: excellent, Bore Condition: shiny, Barrels: 29″, Triggers: double triggers, Stock Dimensions:
14.5″ LOP 2″ DAH 1.75″ DAC, Butt Pad: leather pad, Weight: 6lbs 7oz, Chokes: modified and quarter chokes. Price: $19,998

PERAZZI 12 MIRAGE LIVE BIRD GUN- 1978- 28 3/8" VENT RIB Bbls. at 11mm x 7mm- DETACH SINGLE TRIGGER- EVERY SERIAL # MATCHES- 96% ORIG. CASE COLORS
PERAZZI 12 MIRAGE LIVE BIRD GUN- 1978- 28 3/8″ VENT RIB Bbls. at 11mm x 7mm- DETACH SINGLE TRIGGER- EVERY SERIAL # MATCHES- 96% ORIG. CASE COLORS

PERAZZI 12 MIRAGE LIVE BIRD GUN- 1978- 28 3/8″ VENT RIB Bbls. at 11mm x 7mm- DETACH SINGLE TRIGGER- EVERY SERIAL # MATCHES- 96% ORIG. CASE COLORS#52562, Live Bird Gun, Made in 1978, 28 3/8″ Low Step Ventilated Rib at 11mm x 7mm, Ventilated side/midrib, .725 .014 & .022″ Briley’s in bottom barrel only (Light Mod. & Light Imp.Mod.), Top barrel factory fixed choke at .725 .042 (Full), 2 3/4″ chambers, KG 1,460 weight barrels, (The side ribs are vented,) Detachable single trigger with flat springs, Full forend with the round bottom and flat sides, Type IV forend, Pistol grip Monte Carlo stock at 14 1/2 x 1 7/16 x 1 7/16″ and 2 1/4″ at the heel over a 1″ Kick-Eez pad, 8 lbs., The gun is totally original in every respect with every serial number matching, It retains 96% original blue, The original case colors remain at 96-97%, The wood is still at 92-93%, The checkering at 99%, The bores are excellent. This piece is still tight with very good bite remaining. The piece comes with the original factory trunk case and the proof paperwork. This Mirage still has a lot of shooting life left and was well kept all these years. Price: $3,850

Abercrombie & Fitch – 20ga SxS Boxlock Shotgun, 26” IC/Mod
Abercrombie & Fitch – 20ga SxS Boxlock Shotgun, 26” IC/Mod

Abercrombie & Fitch – 20ga SxS Boxlock Shotgun, 26” IC/Mod: Round knob pistol grip, ¾” leather faced pad, boxlock gun with scalloped receiver, gold oval, 95% case coloring remaining, 80% wood condition, 80% barrels with several light rust spots from normal use, solid game rib, double trigger,splinter forend,  hidden 3rd fastener lockup, extractor, manufactured in Italy by Zoli & Rizzini with 1970 proof, an excellent field gun, available for immediate delivery. 14 ¼” x 1 ½” x 2 ½”, 6 lb., 6 oz. Price: $2,200

BERETTA S686 SPECIAL 28 GAUGE OVER UNDER SHOTGUN
BERETTA S686 SPECIAL 28 GAUGE OVER UNDER SHOTGUN

BERETTA S686 SPECIAL 28 GAUGE OVER UNDER SHOTGUN: 26 1/2″ BARRELS WITH MOBIL CHOKES I.C. & MODIFIED TUBES INCLUDED, MINT BORES, 14 1/2″ LENGTH OF PULL OVER FACTORY BERETTA THIN RECOIL PAD, TIGHT ACTION WITH LEVER RIGHT OF CENTER, 98% OVERALL. Price: $1,550

 

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