If I had a $1 for every time someone said to me “I would like find a nice, original Fox Sterlingworth”, I’d have enough money to buy nice, original 16g Sterlie you see here.
It’s on Gunbroker.com now and the online auction ends 2/21/2021 @ 8:33 PM.
While Fox Sterlingworths are far from rare (more than 150,000 were built), ones in solid, original condition are hard to find, especially in 16 gauge.
A. H. Fox Sterlingworth 16 ga SxS Shotgun: This is a A.H. Fox Sterlingworth 16 ga and this gun is a jewel. Weighing in at 6 lbs (feels like a lot less) the LOP is 14 1/“ DOC 2” and DAH is “3 this little gun comes up like a dream! It has on little tiny chip on the edge of the forearm but other than that this is a super ALL ORIGINAL gun. The case color is 95% and the wood 85+ Only bc of the chip. The barrels are 28” imp modified/ Full.
Exceptionally rare high original condition Special Order Lefever “E” Grade 8ga with 34″ barrels: Easily the finest and most collectible Lefever to come to public market in the last several years. This gun is an exceptionally rare and fine Lefever Arms Co. “E” Grade 8ga. Made with 34″ Damascus barrels, splinter forend, double triggers, extractors, capped pistol grip buttstock and original lined buttplate. The gun is in the 12k serial number range and is finely engraved with scroll and game scenes on side. Special order original gold inlay on trigger guard. This is the only original gold inlaid E Grade gun I have encountered in more than 30 years of aggressively chasing Lefever guns. The gun remains in superb original condition with more than 80% bold dark original case colors remaining. The barrels are excellent with more than 90% bold original pattern and bright shiny bores. The gun retains more than 70% original trigger guard blue and the gold inlay is guaranteed factory original. The buttplate is sound. The stocks are excellent with crisp checkering though there is a small shake in the wood at the toe that measures 4-1/2″. This could easily be made invisible with today’s talented wood craftsmen and this is from the wood drying with a couple of small knots in it, not damage of any type. Overall, the gun is crisp and in delightful untouched original condition. Price: $22,500
PARKER REPRODUCTION DHE 20GA EXCELLENT: A very lightly used Repro in a desirable configuration and in Excellent condition. With case, snap caps and cover.Shotgun Guage: 20 Gauge, Manufacturer: PARKER REPRODUCTION, Model: DHE, Barrel Length: 26IN, Chambers: 2 3/4 IN, Ejectors: YES, Condition: EXCELLENT, Metal Condition: EXCELLENT, Wood Condition: EXCELLENT, Bore Condition: EXCELLENT, Stock Comb: 1 7/16 IN, Stock Heel: 2 1/8IN, Butt Pad: SKELETON, LOP: 14 7/16IN, Weight: 6LBS 8OZ, Choke Left: MODIFIED, Choke Right: IMP/CYL, Extras: SNAP CAPS, Case: LEATHER HARD CASE AND COVER, Proof:Nitro: YES. Price: $4450
Browning BSS 20 Ga SxS Sporter: 3″ chambers. 26″ IC & M barrels. SST, ejectors. 1″ scratch in buttstock, small nick in stock fence behind receiver. Otherwise near new. LOP 14 1/4″ over pad. Price:$1700
Fox Sterlingworth 20 Gauge SxS: 1924 Fox S/W 20 gauge. 26″ M/F. Weight 5lbs. 15oz. 1 1/2′ X 21/2″ X14″ to an old Ranger pad. Good bores and mechanics. Leave your C grade ejector home on the rainy day. Price:$1550
As I’ve said before, the Fox Sterlingworth is the gateway drug for a lot of people who become addicted to vintage shotguns. These side-by-sides were rugged, reliable, and great deals when they were introduced and they still are today — especially when they’re in this kind of condition.
Even though there are lots of 12g Sterlingworths on the market today, few of them are as nice, or as unique, as the one you see here.
This is a 12-gauge Fox Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush with automatic ejectors and it appears to be in excellent original condition.
Back in the day, standard Sterlingworths came in four models: Trap (32″ bbls), Standard (30″ bbls), Field (28″ bbls) and Brush (26″ bbs). “Brush” guns were the lightest Sterlingworths available and they came standard with the most open chokes (Cylinder & Mod). I’ve always thought of them as the perfect Sterlingworths for upland hunting, especially if you’re into grouse and woodcock.
In addition, because this one is a “Deluxe” model Sterlingworth, this gun came with twin ivory beads and an original pad. Automatic ejectors were added as another feature.
More info about this one from the seller: My personal benchmark gun. Decided after it being in the safe for several years that someone else needs to own it. Will start it out here for a week and see what happens. Specs are 26″ barrels choked .013 and .020 and bores of .729 per my Skeets, and 2 3/4″ chambers and ejectors. LOP to end of wood 13 1/4″. To end of Antiflinch Pad 14 1/4″. DAC 1 5/8″, DAH 2 7/8″. Weight and this is downright lovely is 6 lb 9 oz. A 12 bore made for bird hunting as they say. Serial Number. is 122114. Call this my benchmark gun because the case colors are just about mint. Slight fading on the underside, but they are all there. Blueing is 100 percent except for some small spot right around the top rib where Dan Rossiter from Custom Stocks and Steel, believed there may have been a bit oil or whatever missed when the factory did the barrels. Gun has been apart one time and that was by Dan when he checked the internals. He added the Antiflinch pad (forgot what was on it). Bought this at a small in Va from a collector. Gun’s bores were covered in cosmoline and per the house the gun had not been fired for over 50 years (who knows). Wasn’t fired much if at all. Some flaking on the finish in spots. I’ve done nothing to the gun and its time to move it on. Serial Number: 122114, Barrel Length: 26″, Chambers: 2 3/4″, Ejectors: Yes, Condition: Excellent, Metal Condition: Excellent, Wood Condition: Small bit of flaking, Bore Condition: Mint, Gauge: 12, Butt Pad: Jostam Anti flinch, Weight: 6 lb 9 oz, Choke Left: Mod, Choke Right: IC. PS. This is a Savage marked gun with all the best Philly Fox features. Also had twin Ivory beads (front and rear).
Francotte 20E 20 Gauge – 1950, 99% CASE COLOR, MINTY!, vintage firearms inc: General Specs: Francotte, Year 1950, 20 gauge, 5lbs 12oz, IC/M, LOP 14 7/16″, DAH 2 3/8″, DAC 1 1/2″, Serial Number: 89933. Auguste Francotte is world famous as a high-quality firearms maker from the gun making center of Leige, Belgium dating back as far as 1805. Still making fine shotguns with price tags starting at $18,000, Francotte is a brand recognized and used by heads of state, business tycoons, and in some cases, the fortunate “Average Joe”. Search long and hard, you will not find another Auguste Francotte like this one. First, this is the Model 20E, one of the higher grades A. Francotte offered in the boxlock ejector format and it has the sideplated action allowing for beautiful scroll engraving. Second, the gun is 70 years old and RETAINS 99% OF THE FACTORY FINISH, INCLUDING ALL OF THE BOLD, VIVID, ORIGINAL BONE AND CHARCOAL CASE COLORS. I HAVE NEVER SEEN A HIGHER CONDITION FRANCOTTE 20E! Francotte guns are nicely built side by sides with a solid reputation for graceful looks and handling characteristics as well as rock solid dependability. This fine Francotte, sn89933 built in 1950, has seen little use. Beautifully hand engraved with FINE SCROLL ENGRAVING AND FOLIATE SCROLL BREECH BALLS, this is a very high-end side by side. The wood is nicely figured European walnut showing lots of fiddleback figure and rich dark streaking, with most of the factory finish still there and the factory 28LPI hand-cut checkering in excellent condition. There are field use marks in the buttstock wood, but all are superficial and there are no cracks or gouges in the wood. We can restore the wood for you if you wish in a short period of time for an added cost; just ask about this in-house service we provide. The gun weighs in at an ultra-light 5 3/4lbs. with its 26” Siemens Martin fluid steel barrels that are choked IC/M and have mirror perfect bores. It is a very dynamic shotgun with the balance point on the hinge pin. With the Prince of Wales style stock, it is lightning fast to the shoulder and puts a smile on your face when you handle her. The gun is mechanically excellent with strong, well timed ejectors, barrels tight on the hinge pin and breech face like a new gun, perfect screws, crisp triggers…all in perfect working order and in need of no work at all. THERE ARE 5 LOCKING POINTS ON THIS FRANCOTTE; A HIDDEN GREENER CROSS BOLT AT THE TOP RIB, DOUBLE UNDERLUG LOCKING BOLTS, SIDECLIPS, AND A THROUGH RECEIVER BARREL LUG, making sure the barrels are locked to the breech face laterally and vertically. It just doesn’t get any better than that! What a great gun for your upland pursuits, especially for the grouse and woodcock coverts and hunting over fine dogs. She will represent well at the vintage sporting events too. Francotte built some of the highest quality guns ever made and they are surprisingly affordable as this gun demonstrates. Thanks for looking! Price:$8,950
Beretta – SO4 – 30″ m / f – quality sidelock OU – completely refurbished: 12ga, 2-3/4″, 29-1/2″ M / F (.724 – .030 / .039) – Hand Filed Vent Rib, Ejectors, Single Non-Selective Trigger, LOP 14-7/8″, Drop 1-1/2 to 1-3/4″, Neutral Cast, Weight 8 lbs 4 oz. Completely refurbished gun, and used little – if any – since. Bores are perfect, and at factory original specs. This gun was reproofed in 1993, and possibly refurbished at that time. The gun is ready to shoot, but you can detect slight movement in the barrels. Price:$3950
A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model: My personal benchmark gun. Decided after it being in the safe for several years that someone else needs to own it. Will start it out here for a week and see what happens. Specs are 26″ barrels choked .013 and .020 and bores of .729 per my Skeets, and 2 3/4″ chambers and ejectors. LOP to end of wood 13 1/4″. To end of Antiflinch Pad 14 1/4″. DAC 1 5/8″, DAH 2 7/8″. Weight and this is downright lovely is 6 lb 9 oz. A 12 bore made for bird hunting as they say. Serial Number. is 122114. Call this my benchmark gun because the case colors are just about mint. Slight fading on the underside, but they are all there. Blueing is 100 percent except for some small spot right around the top rib where Dan Rossiter from Custom Stocks and Steel, believed there may have been a bit oil or whatever missed when the factory did the barrels. Gun has been apart one time and that was by Dan when he checked the internals. He added the Antiflinch pad (forgot what was on it). Bought this at a small in Va from a collector. Gun’s bores were covered in cosmoline and per the house the gun had not been fired for over 50 years (who knows). Wasn’t fired much if at all. Some flaking on the finish in spots. I’ve done nothing to the gun and its time to move it on. Pictures when the sun comes up. Serial Number: 122114, Barrel Length: 26″, Chambers: 2 3/4″, Ejectors: Yes, Condition: Excellent, Metal Condition: Excellent, Wood Condition: Small bit of flaking, Bore Condition: Mint, Triggers: 2, Gauge: 12, Butt Pad: Jostam Anti flinch, Weight: 6 lb 9 oz, Choke Left: Mod, Choke Right: IC. PS. This is a Savage marked gun with all the best Philly Fox features. Also had twin Ivory beads (front and rear). Price:$1,950
For as long as I can remember, the Fox Sterlingworth has been the go-to shotgun for bird hunters looking to jump into the world of vintage American side-by-sides.
Typically, these guns cost less than comparable Parkers and weigh less than comparable L.C. Smiths and Ithacas.
The Sterlingworth is also a great looking gun built on a solid, dependable design. In its day, it was marketed as “… a plain, staunch, trustworthy gun, at a reasonable price, that will make good all the time and under all conditions.” That’s still true now.
This one’s on Gunbroker.com now. It looks like a good, honest gun that has seen plenty of field use and been well taken care of its entire life. The online auction for it ends 5/31/2020 @ 8:08 PM.
FOX STERLINGWORTH by SAVAGE 16 Gauge Side by Side Shotgun: This auction features the pictured 16 Gauge Fox Sterlingworth Shotgun built while under Savage ownership. This gun has 28-inch barrels choked Full and Modified. The length of pull measures 14 and 1/8 inches. The bores are bright and shiny. The front bead will be replaced before the gun is shipped.
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: 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: #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: 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
But one gun I would still like to own is a 16g Sterlingworth with a straight, English-style stock. These guns were made in the Savage period and badged Skeet & Upland Game models. They’re tough to find, so when I saw this listing on Gunbroker.com, I was excited. I was thrilled when I saw the price.
But on closer inspection, I discovered this gun isn’t what I had hoped. Instead of being a Skeet & Upland Game, it’s just regular Sterlingworth that was converted to a straight grip. Whoever did the work did a nice job. They even extended the trigger guard out to make it look more “English” — something Savage didn’t bother doing on their Skeet & Upland Game guns.
Regardless, it’s a nice looking gun. And if you’re looking for a classic, American grouse gun, it’s a good deal. This online auction ends today, 7/15/2019 @ 1:54 PM EST.
Very nice A H FOX 16 ga 28in English Stocked gun: 28 in Special Alloy steel barreled 16 gauge gun. Case colors remaining in scattered areas. Extractors, long trigger tang, White front bead and mid-bead. 1 7/8″ DAC, 3″ DAH, 14 3/8″ LOP. Clean bores, perfect mechanicals. Choked IM and a tight Full. A svelte 6lbs 7 oz.
A. GALAZAN BEST PINLESS SIDELOCK SXS 20 GAUGE: RICHARD ROY ENGRAVED, 29″ SELF OPENER 005 AND 015 2 3/4 CHAMBERS, SINGLE TRIGGER, EJECTORS SPLINTER FOREARM, ENGLISH GRIP, CHECKERED BUTT WITH ENGRAVED HEEL AND TOE PLATES, 6LBS 1 OZ, 2 1/4″ DAH, 1 1/2″ DAC, 14 3/8″ LOP. Price:$37,500
F.lli Piotti 20g King No.1 Sidelock Ejector Side-by-Side Shotgun: H&H pattern bar action sidelock ejector, case colored with very well cut engraving of rose bouquets and the finest English style scroll. Platinum cocking indicators, non-auto safety, and two triggers — the front one being hinged.
Nicely figured Turkish walnut stock has a straight hand, diamond-shaped grip and splinter forend with an Anson pushrod release.29″ Chopper Lump barrels, 3″ chambers: 3″ (76mm). Choke Left: .020″, Choke Right: .010″. Very fine and expertly cut checkering with Mullered borders. 14 9/16″ LOP over a 1″ Pachmayr pad. Manufactured in 1996 (“BH” date code) the gun has 29″ chopper lump steel barrels with a raised concave matted rib and are choked IC/M. Price:$15,000
Ithaca SKB Mod. 100 20ga 28 in. S x S: Barrels choked F / M. Single select trigger. Non-ejector. Engraved scalloped boxlock action in extremely good condition. Wood has some handling marks. Very nice shotgun. 14 in. LOP to factory butt plate. Price:$1350
But…the stock on this Sterlingworth looks right for a Fox. So how did it get there? It may have been special ordered, the gun may maybe have gone back to the factoy for it, or this Sterlingworth may have been restocked by someone who really knew what they were doing.
Regardless, this little 20g side-by-side is a nice gun. With ejectors it’s rare, too. Overall, I think it’s a good deal.
Fox Sterlingworth SxS 20 Gauge Ejectors Nice Wood!!: 28″ barrels 14″ LOP 1 .75 drop at comb. 2.5 drop at heel. 2 weight barrels. Choked M/Cyl. Bores are bright and shiny. Bluing on barrels is in great shape with no dents. Muzzle has some minor handling marks. Case coloring is 40-50%. Screws are in good shape and the slots are not rolled over. Bluing on trigger gaurd show some wear around serial numbers. Top lever is right of center. Showing that it locks tight and has been gently used. Automatic saftey link is still there and working. Stock finish is in nice shape. I do not see any splits or cracks in wood. Butt plate in great shape. Checkering in great shape. Price:$2,650.
Manufacturer: S/N: 3702XX
Caliber: 16 Gauge
Chambers: 2 3/4
Metal Condition: Fair
Wood Condition: Fair
Bore Condition: Good
Stock: Walnut- Stock has been refinished
13 7/8″ LOP front trigger
Fore End: Walnut – Fore End has been refinished
Weight: 6 1/4 lbs.
Sights: Center Rib
Chokes: Modified / Full
I bet we would have liked Charles Davis. A dog breeder and grouse hunter, Mr Davis created “Shooting Around the Clock” back in 1920s to improve his shotgun skills and kill time between hunting seasons. By the ’30s, this game had evolved into Skeet and become the hottest shooting sport in the country. It had also become a sales opportunity many gunmakers were aiming to take advantage of.
The Sterlingworth Skeet and Upland Game Gun, was the SxS the A.H. Fox Co. made to target this new market. This model debut in company’s 1935 catalog. Here’s some info about these shotguns from the AH Fox Collectors Association website:
To meet the demand for a moderately priced skeet and upland game double gun we have produced the famous Fox-Sterlingworth gun in this new straight grip model with 26″ barrels bored: right skeet, cylinder, left quarter choke. This is a standard stock model possessing the features of skeet boring and stock design heretofore available only in custom-built guns
Barrels– Fluid compressed steel, 26″ length bored right skeet cylinder and left quarter choke
Action– Two trigger, extractor type
Stock– American walnut straight grip, length 14″, drop at comb 1 1/2″, drop at heel 2 1/2″
Engraving– Ornamented with line engraving on frame and guard
Weight– 12 gauge about 7 lbs, 16 gauge about 6 lbs, 20 gauge about 5 3/4 lbs
The following extras are furnished to order: Automatic ejectors, Fox-Kautzky Selective single trigger, Beavertail forend, recoil pad, Ivory sights
Of course, the one you see here is for sale. Here’s the listing for it from Gunsinternational.com:
Fox Skeet and Upland Game 12 bore SxS: Very nice, scare Fox Upland Skeet model Sterlingworth Utica, NY manufacture. 12 bore with .005 & .012 chokes in the original 26″ barrels. Bright shiny bores. 2 3/4″ chambers. Solid rib with ivory front and center bead. Extractor & double triggers. Case color in the protected areas with the balance of the receiver faded bright. Very nice original straight grip butt stock and semi beavertail for end. Good checking and finish and less than normal nicks and dings. 14 1/4″ LOP 1 1/2″ DAC and 2 1/8″ DAH. Lever falls to the center and has a tight lock up and is on face. Excellent original blue on the barrels and trigger guard showing only a few scattered freckles.
?matching numbers. An excellent scarce Fox for the shooter or collector. Price:$2,350
I can be hard on American shotguns. Parkers, L.C. Smiths. Foxes, Lefevers, Ithacas –I’ve owned them all, and it’s not that I don’t think they’re decent doubles. It’s just that they’re WAY too expensive today.
Once you get over the sentimental thrill of owning an “Old Reliable”, you realize the prices for Parkers and other made-in-the-USA SxSs are more about nostalgia than quality. This 20 gauge Parker A-1 Special is a perfect example. While it sold for$253,000, this 20 gauge, $8.750 Francotte is a better gun.
All that being said, every now and then though I come across an American-made SxS that I see as being true to its heritage. This 12 gauge A.H. Fox Sterlingworth with ejectors is that kind of gun.
Sterlingworths were built to affordable, practical doubles appropriate for all kinds of shooting. And this gun is just that. At this price, it’s just what Fox wanted Sterlingworth to be: A ton of gun for the money (AKA a great deal).
Fox Sterlingworth 12 Gauge SXS Shotgun: With 28″ Barrels, Choked IC/Mod, Double Triggers, Auto Ejectors, Barrels 90% And Thinning, Receiver 20% Case Colors, Wood 60% With Handling Marks, 1927 Philadelphia Gun. Price: $895
Like a lot of guys, my first real SxS was a Fox Sterlingworth. My gun was a 12g with 30″ barrels, and even though it didn’t fit me, I killed a lot of wild pheasants with it.
Introduced in 1910 and built until around 1940, the Sterlingworth was Fox’s best selling shotgun. The vast majority were 12 gauges with 28″ or 30″ barrels. But the company also offered 12g Sterlingworths with 26″ and 32″ barrels.
From the beginning, Fox associated a “style” with the barrel lengths of its Sterlingworths: 26″ guns were Brush styles, 28″ guns were Field styles, 30″ guns were Standard styles, and 32″ guns were Trap styles.
That means the guns you see here is a true Trap-style Sterlingworth, and with it’s 32″ barrels, it would a great gun for sporting clays or the field.
Fox Sterlingworth “Trap” SxS Shotgun, 32″ barrels: A totally original and honest 32″ 12 gauge Sterlingworth. Not messed with and in great user condition. Tight as new. Lever way right of center. Completely on face. Both chokes are original with 4 1/2″ of taper. Just a nice user with perfect barrels. Price:$1350
Model: Sterlingworth Trap
Serial Number: 121061
Metal Condition: Original blue
Wood Condition: Original finish and checkering
Bore Condition: Unhoned and no pitting
Stock: 14 1/4″ x 1 5/8″ x 2 3/4″
Rib: Rings like a bell
Weight: 7 lbs 5 oz
Manufacture Date: 1928
Choke Left: .729 (.041)
Choke Right: .729 (.023)
Minimum Wall Thickness Left: .030
Minimum Wall Thickness Right: .029
Stone walls. Grown-over apple orchards. English setters.
If you’re a sucker for all the trappings of traditional grouse hunting, you’ll probably like the classic American shotguns posted here.
I’ve called the Fox Sterlingworth the gateway drug of doubles. It has been the first side-by-side for a lot of guys (including me), and it has initiated a passion that has taken over many a life.
This Sterlingworth caught my eye because it’s a 20g with 28″ and super shootable stock dimensions. It’s also priced very fairly.
Savage Arms Co. Sterlingworth, 20 Gauge Game Gun: Price: $1,499.99
Chambers: 2 3/4
Metal Condition: Very Good
Wood Condition: Very Good
Bore Condition: Very Good
Barrels: 28″ Blued Steel with Tapered Concave Rib
Triggers: Double Triggers with Extractors
Stock: Checkered Walnut Pistol Grip Butt Stock
DAC: 1 3/8″, DAH: 2 3/8″, Cast off: 1/8″, 14″
Fore End: Checkered Walnut Splinter Style
Butt Pad: Synthetic Butt Plate
Weight: 6 lbs. 2 ozs.
Sights: Single Bead
Chokes: Fixed: Full & Modified
Ithaca was one America’s most successful gunmakers, and NID was the final incarnation of their SxSs. These guns are basic and tough– like old-school F150s with crank windows and bench seats. This 16g NID is on Gunbroker.com now, and the listing ends tomorrow, 12/23, @ 8:26:50 AM ET.
Ithaca NID Star Model 16 GA: Up for sale we have a beautiful NID 16 guage, 28″barrels choked M/F, all serial numbers match. This gun was made in 1929, 2 3/4″ chambers and shoots well, the gun is very solid and locks up tight. There is one deep scratch on the forearm, other then that the wood is really nice. The barrels and bores are excellent.
I’m not sure what we’re seeing here. Is this a rare, 20 gauge A.H. Fox Sterlingworth Skeet & Upland Game gun? Or is it just regular 20g Sterlingworth someone has messed with?
This gun is serial number — 270421 — which puts it around 1938. That’s near the end of the line for A.H. Fox, and three years into the period when the company was building their straight-gripped, high-stocked Sterlingworth Skeet & Upland Game guns. So there’s a chance this is one of those guns. If that’s the case, it’s a great deal.
But here’s the thing: The stocks on Sterly S&UGs didn’t have the checkered sidepanels — or at least none of the ones I’ve seen, and the none ones Fox advertised in their literature, had stocks with checkered sidepanels. That detail was reserved for Foxes in B-grade and up.
So did the person who ordered this gun also ask for the panels? Did a stocker at the company add them as a way to kill the last few hours of a work week? Or was the stock a leftover intended for a higher-grade gun, and since A.H. Fox was nearing its end, the company wanted to use it up?
Of course, the other possible answers to this riddle are a restock — maybe by Savage at a later date or by someone else — or maybe even little custom work to the wood after the gun after it was delivered (I doubt this, though). But even if one of those are the case, this side-by-side is still a nice little double.
Fox Sterlingworth SxS 20ga 2 3/4″
Action tight Bluing 85%. Case color 12%
Desirable 26” barrels
Straight Stock! Wood shows handling wear. Has recoil pad installed
Acouple shallow dings in the barrels from over the years
LOP – 15 1/8 DAC – 1 1/4” DAH – 2 3/8”
Great light weight gun weighing in at 6lbs 2oz
Middle barrel bead, double triggers, extractors, box lock
Here is a hard Fox to find. It’s a 16g Sterlingworth Skeet & Upland Game gun and it’s on Gunbroker.com now. The auction ends 8/24/2015 @9:30:00 PM ET.
The Sterlingworth Skeet and Upland Game Gun was introduced in 1935. Skeet was new sport then, having been invented in 1920 by Charles Davis, a grouse hunter from Andover, MA.
In 1926, William Harnden Foster introduced Skeet to America with an article in the February issue ofNational Sportsman and Hunting and Fishing magazine. The game boomed in popularity and by the ’30s makers offers shotguns tailored for the sport.
Fox added the Skeet & Upland Game Gun to their line in 1935 to “…meet the demand for a moderately priced skeet and upland game double gun”. They were offered in 12, 16 & 20 gauge, and with 26″ & 28″ barrels.
It retains about 65% blue with most of the thinning on the sides and a small ding in the right tube 10-1/4” from the breech that is barely visible inside. There’s also evidence of a very shallow dent on the bottom of the left tube 5” from the muzzle that seems to have been professionally removed. The bores are perfect mirrors and examination with a Hawkeye bore scope yields no indication of polishing. The frame retains 60% of original case color. The stocks are completely sound with scattered light to moderate handling marks (mostly light) and a repaired small, shallow chip on the right side of the butt plate. It is 100% on-face, lock-up is as tight as a vault (tested with the forend removed) and the top lever comes to rest well right of center. Though this gun has a short tang there are known factory examples of short tang straight stocked guns and there is absolutely no sign of it having been modified. A very nice 16 gauge that, on handling, one can immediately feel will comport itself quite well in the field.
Here’s a great way to start an affair with nice American doubles. With 28″ barrels and what looks like an all-original finish, this Fox Sterlingworth is nice. And the price –$1095 — makes is even nicer.
From 1910 to about 1940, A.H. Fox and then the Savage Arms Company built around 140,000 Sterlingworths. Most were 12 gauges, but about 23,000 were 16s. Whatever the gauge, these side-by-sides were, and still are, great doubles — especially when they’re priced right.
A.H. Fox Sterlingworth 16 GA Utica NY. 28” barrels. Tight Full/Tight Mod. LOP 14 1/8” & 13 ¼”, DAC 1 5/8”, DAH 2 5/8”. Chambered for 2 ½” shells. Numbers matching gun. Condition: Barrels have a nice ring to them. Bright shinny bore. Right barrel has imperfection about 14” in. Signs of imperfection are visible from outside if looking down the side of barrel. Tight solid action. Barrel lever is right of center. Nice shooter. Price:$1,095
“To meet the demand for a moderately priced skeet and upland game double gun we have produced the famous Fox-Sterlingworth gun in this new straight grip model with 26″ barrels bored: right skeet, cylinder, left quarter choke. This is a standard stock model possessing the features of skeet boring and stock design heretofore available only in custom-built guns.”
I owned one of these in 20g, and it was decent little double. This one would make a great all around upland gun.
12g Fox Sterlingworth Skeet & Upland Game Gun: Barrels are 26” long with skeet / ¼ choke, solid rib, and good bores. Break open double barrel shotgun. Metal retains most of its original blue and casehardened finish, Checkered walnut wood with period recoil pad. Extractors and double triggers. Mfg 1935 to 1945 SN: 160260 Condition: Very Good.
The Fox Sterlingworth was one of the most popular American doubles of all time. From 1910 to about 1940, A.H. Fox and then the Savage Arms Company built around 140,000 of these great side-by-side shotguns to shooters throughout North America. Most were “Standard” or “Field” guns. A few were true Sterlingworth “Trap” guns.
First offered in 1913, the Sterlingworth “Trap” gun wasn’t a grade. It was just the company’s designation for a heavy 12g, 16g, or 20g Sterly with 32″ bbls & full chokes. Ejectors were available as an option.
12g Fox Sterlingworth “Trap” with true 32″ barrels: Good original case color. Gun is tight with top lever well right of center. Mirror bores as original. Right at .725 with 43/1000 choke (extra full). Left also at .725 with 41/1000 choke (extra full). Chambers at 2 5/8″. Extractors. Auto safety. Weight of gun is 7 LBS 8 OZ. This gun points like a dream. Stock dimensions: LOP – 14 3/8″, Drop at Comb – 1 5/8″, Drop at Heel – 2 5/8″. Price:$1,350
Here’s a tough shotgun to find, not because of its gauge or grade, but because of its condition. Twenty-gauge Fox Serlingworths are easy to track down. But how often do you see one that’s almost new?
A.H. Fox introduced Sterlingworths in 1910 and made them until 1946. Sterlingworths were the lowest-grade, least expensive double the company offered, and even though they were far from the cheapest side-by-sides on the American market, they were incredible deals. Hunters and shooters realized this, bought up thousands of them, and made the Sterlingworth Fox’s most successful model.
This Sterlingworth is a later gun, with the cyanide-applied case colors on the action and canoe-paddle stock typical of models in A.H. Fox’s later Savage era. The Savage Arms Co. bought A.H. Fox in November of 1929, and they went on to make changes to the Sterlingworths as a way to cut production costs.