Two bargains: Boxlock shotguns on Gunbroker.com now …

Back when I wrote my article Boxlock Bargains for Shooting Sportsman Magazine, the two SxS you see here were the kind of shotguns I had in mind. Each one is a versatile birdgun that you can use for anything in the uplands. And each one will sell for cheap money. They’re on Gunbroker.com now, listed with No Reserve.

Miroku Model 550 12 Gauge 2.75" FULL/IMP Top-Break Side by Side SxS Shotgun
Miroku Model 550 12 Gauge 2.75″ FULL/IMP Top-Break Side by Side SxS Shotgun

Miroku Model 550 12 Gauge 2.75″ FULL/IMP Top-Break Side by Side SxS Shotgun: Serial#: 165020 Year of Manufacture: Circa 1960-1980 Gauge: 12 Gauge, 2 ¾” Shells Barrel Length: 28” Choke: The left barrel is choked Full. The right barrel is choked Improved. Both chokes are fixed.

Miroku Model 550 12 Gauge 2.75" FULL/IMP Top-Break Side by Side SxS Shotgun
Miroku Model 550 12 Gauge 2.75″ FULL/IMP Top-Break Side by Side SxS Shotgun

Weight: 6 Pounds and 7.9 Ounces Stock: The LOP is 14” from the front and 13 ¼” from the back trigger to the rear end of the buttplate.

Excellent, almost new Husqvarna 310A 12ga sxs boxlock
Excellent, almost new Husqvarna 310A 12ga sxs boxlock

Excellent, almost new Husqvarna 310A 12ga sxs boxlock: These Husqvarna boxlock 310 series guns are not uncommon, but in this condition they certainly are.  I would rate this gun at about 98%.  One of the nicest I’ve seen, and the nicest I’ve held in my hands, and I’ve bought, owned and sold a bunch of these.  The only real flaws are a bit of finish loss on the bottom of the receiver, and a couple tiny dings in the wood.  I was going to keep this, but I need a gps collar for my setter more than I need another sxs, so have at it.

Excellent, almost new Husqvarna 310A 12ga sxs boxlock
Excellent, almost new Husqvarna 310A 12ga sxs boxlock

Rock solid gun, no issues or surprises.  Made on Sauer greener crossbolt actions, Husqvarna made the rest using high quality Swedish steel.  27.5″ barrels choked f/xf, 2.75″ chambers, perfect bores, no dents or dings, super tight, as new lockup, still tight to open and close.  Modern dimensions of 1.5 x 2.5 x 14.25 to factory HVA buttplate.  Weighs 6 3/4 lbs.  Put Briley thin wall tubes in it and you could use this for everything.

5 things you’ll love about the FABARM Autumn SxS shotgun …

FABARM Autumn SxS shotgun
FABARM Autumn SxS shotgun

We’re back. Stitch and I just returned from a few weeks of grouse and woodcock hunting up in Maine. We had a great time and we found a lot of birds.

While the 12g I had with me did the job, here’s a SxS I wish I had had with me:

The FABARM Autumn SxS

Last spring Caeser Guerini sent me one of these shotguns in 20 gauge to look over and bang some rounds through. It was a great gun and a blast to shoot. Here’s what impressed me most about it:

5 things to love about the FABARM Autumn SxS:

20g FABARM Autumn SxS shotgun
20g FABARM Autumn SxS shotgun

1. IT’S EASY ON THE EYES

20g FABARM Autumn SxS
20g FABARM Autumn SxS

My FABARM Autumn was a great double to admire with a rounded, color-case hardened action, some interesting scroll engraving, and nicely figured, oil-finished wood, While it had a vintage vibe to it, its clean, pinless action gave it a sleek, modern look.

2. IT’S BUILT TO SHOOT TONS OF ROUNDS AND KEEP GOING

Unusual lumps on the 20g FABARM Autumn SXS, part of its unique locking system
What the?!? Unique quad lumps on the FABARM Autumn SXS, part of its extra durable locking system

On the outside, the FABARM Autumn looks like an old-school, Anson & Deeley style boxlock shotgun. But it’s not.

Instead, the gun mounts the lockwork on its triggerplate and uses sliding rods to cock the hammers.

Hybrid boxlock / triggerplate cocking and firing system on the 20g FABARM Autumn SXS
Hybrid boxlock / triggerplate cocking and firing system on the 20g FABARM Autumn SXS

Then there’s the real interesting part of the FABARM Autumn: its quad-lug system.

Another look at the unique split hinge pin, quad-lump locking system on the 20g FABARM Autumn SXS
The unique quad-lump locking system on the FABARM Autumn SXS

These 4 lumps  are designed to increase the longevity of the barrel/action connection and help you deliver quicker, more accurate second shots. How?

Even though we worship SxSs like Parkers and Purdeys, those guns, and others like them, have their weaknesses. One’s the way the barrels mount on the action.

These shotguns connect to the action with two lumps. The front lump has the hook. This catches the hingepin. The rear lump has a bite. This receives a sliding bolt that comes in from the back to lock down the barrels (most British and European SxSs also have a bite on the front lump, but it doesn’t always do much to secure the bbls).

Hook on a set of Purdey shotgun barrels
Hook and bites on a set of Purdey SXS shotgun barrels, from Hallowellco.com

When you fire a SxS, the barrels twist horizontally and flex vertically, trying to pivot on the hinge pin. Even though the bolt, bites and action secure the barrels and resist this twisting and flexing, these forces pulls you off your target. And over time, they cause wear which can lead to a SxS’s barrels going off face and become loose on the action.

(For a nerdy dive into what this mean, read this article by Delbert Whitman Jr.).

Unique split hingepin, quad-lump locking system on the 20g FABARM Autumn SXS
Another look at the unique split hinge pin, quad-lump locking system on the 20g FABARM Autumn SXS

The FABARM Autumn quad-lump design displaces this twisting and flexing over more surface area. This helps cut down on wear and increases the longevity of the barrel/action connection.

The quad-lug system also stabilizes the barrels and cuts down on horizontal flexing. This is an idea borrowed from competitive pigeon shooting and the thinking is that it helps you deliver a quicker, more accurate shot with the left barrel.

3. IT FEELS GREAT

A few years ago I shot a 12g Purdey Trigger Plate OU. It was big gun that came in at just over 8 lbs, but it had a lively feel that belied its weight and encouraged me to shoot it all day.

A few months later I was I hunting with a new 20g Italian OU. It was a field gun, and even though it weighed 6 3/4 lbs, it felt heavy and dead, like a target gun. I wanted to get rid of it as soon as possible.

I thought about those guns the first time I shot the 20g FABARM Autumn. How would it feel — dead or alive?

FABARM Autumn SxS shotgun
FABARM Autumn SxS shotgun

My gun had 28″ barrels and weighed 6 lbs, 6 oz. — a good weight for an all-around bird gun. But it also pistol grip stock and a beavertail forend. Those said “target” to me — and had me worried.

After a lot of clays and a flat of 2 3/4″, 7/8 oz loads (which were a PITA to find), I had my answer: alive and very lively.

Like that big Purdey OU, the FABARM Autumn snapped to my shoulder and and picked up the clays with little effort. The more I shot it, the more I wanted to shoot it. I think its lightweight barrels were a big reason for this, but not the only one.

I liked the pistol-grip, beavertail forend setup, too. They gave me a lot to hold onto and more control over the gun more. This made the gun easier to mount and move to target.

The selective single trigger was crisp and with just a of whisker play in it on second shots. And even though I pulled it as fast as I could and tried to make it fail, it fired round after round without a problem.

4. IT’S ALL YOU NEED FOR UPLAND HUNTING

With choke tubes, 3" chambers and steel-approved barrels, the 20g FABARM Autumn can do it all in the uplands
With choke tubes, 3″ chambers and steel-approved barrels, the 20g FABARM Autumn can do it all in the uplands

With  3″ chambers, choke tubes and barrels/choke tubes that are steel-shot safe, the 20g FABARM Autumn I had could handle all the bird hunting I did (or hoped to do).

If you’re an upland hunter, it could do the same for you.

5. IT’S BACKED BY A 5-YEAR WARRANTY

I’ve had old guns, older guns, and really old guns. They can be a PITA to maintain and repair. So I appreciate new, trouble-free new SxSs and OUs.

But of course, things do break. When they do, it’s good to know the gun is backed by a warranty, especially one with repair centers in the US.

The FABARM Autumn’s 5-year warranty gives you this kind of protection and peace of mind.

Of course, while I loved the gun, I thought it could use some tweaks:

  • The fences could use a bit of styling, especially on ahead of the toplever.
  • The pistol grip needs some refinement. I would like to see it look more like round-knob
  • They need to add an automatic safety. It’s a must have on a bird gun. I’ve owned guns without them, and it’s too easy to forget to slide it to “safe” after opening and closing the gun.

Ready to buy? Here are a few dealers on Gunsinternational.com who can help you out now:

Fabarm Autumn Pistol Grip Side by Side Shotgun | 20ga 30″ | For Sale at Cole Guns

Fabarm Autumn 20ga For Sale at Gordy and Sons Outfitters

Fabarm Autumn 20 gauge Side by Side 30″ For Sale at Pacific Sporting Arms East

Fabarm Autumn 20ga 28″ English Stock For Sale at Silver Creek Outfitters

Fabarm Autumn 20ga 28” barrels English Etock SST For Sale at the Iron Cowboy Gun Shop

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

Fantastic August Francotte XXV 16ga best quality sidelock game gun - Ultra lightweight Game Gun that is stone new and stunningly gorgeous
Fantastic August Francotte XXV 16ga best quality sidelock game gun – Ultra lightweight Game Gun that is stone new and stunningly gorgeous

Fantastic August Francotte XXV 16ga best quality sidelock game gun – Ultra lightweight Game Gun that is stone new and stunningly gorgeous: Stone cold gorgeous 16ga August Francotte 16ga game gun made with straight stock, double triggers, auto ejectors, splinter forend, and original beautifully checkered butt.  Case hardened action is near fully engraved in beautiful floral scroll pattern as seen in the photos.  Stunning straight grained European Walnut with fiddleback that is just so pretty!  Overall the gun remains in near mint original condition with virtually all original refinish remaining on both wood and metal surfaces.  The gun would make an outstanding woodcock and grouse gun!  Mechanics are crips, bores are brilliant and shiny.  Gun is tight as new. Price: $11,950

J & W Tolley 4 Bore – 1895, 95% CASE COLOR
J & W Tolley 4 Bore – 1895, 95% CASE COLOR

J & W Tolley 4 Bore – 1895, 95% CASE COLOR: 15lbs 12oz, Serial Number: 7804. J. & W. Tolley was an English gunmaker of some notoriety, mostly noted for large bore waterfowlers.  From about 1894 through 1903 they occupied a London address and that was when this gun was made.  Tolley guns became known for their quality in 1894 with their appointment as gunmakers to the King of Portugal and to the Persian Royal family.  These are not casual appointments, and the quality can be seen in their guns from the London address after 1894.  This amazing find is a FULLY FACTORY ORIGINAL, HIGH CONDITION, UNTOUCHED single barrel hammer gun with a Jones Underlever locking system produced by J & W Tolley 126 years ago.  The serial number (7804) and proof marks on the bottom of the barrel indicates a manufacture date of 1895.  The action retains 85% factory case color with some fading, nice border engraving with screws and breech area nicely but sparsely decorated.  The underlever and full tang trigger guard retain 95% vivid factory case colors.  The Jones underlever is known for its robust lock-up, and the barrels are tight on the breech face as a new gun.  The 38” fluid steel barrel has excellent mirror bore, 4” chamber, .940 bore diameter with extra full choke 52 thou restriction, and a minimum barrel wall thickness of .106”!  Barrel has normal and numerous light handling marks and 85% factory blue.  The mechanics are excellent, with a crisp trigger, strong springs, and perfect screws.  The fit of wood to metal is impeccable, and the checkering shows almost no wear.  The stock measurements are     14 9/16” LOP with a drop at heel of 2 ¾”.  WE HAVE PRESENTED THIS GUN IN “AS FOUND CONDITION” WITHOUT CLEANING OR ALTERING THE GUN.  We generally prescribe to cleaning up checkering and replacing decrepit butt pads before showing the gun, but some collectors prefer to choose what cleaning should be done.  We did function check the entire gun and it is awesome.  If you want service done to the gun we can arrange that with our gunsmith department and get the work done without delay.  The gun is a BEAST when brought to shoulder…IT IS A BEHEMOTH!  Weighing 15 3/4lbs. and balanced 2½” in front of the hinge pin, this is a gun that could be fired from the shoulder but was likely rested in the punt boat on a sack of grain.  There is a rear flip-up sight used to line up on the flock of waterfowl this gun was made to decimate, one shot at a time.  These are rare guns in 4 bore and to find a waterfowler in this high factory original condition is a treasure found.Price: $9,950.00

Parker Repro DHE - 28ga - 28” & 26” - M/F & IC/M - 99% Condition - Double Trigger - Skeleton Buttplate - Pistol Grip - Beavertail Forend
Parker Repro DHE – 28ga – 28” & 26” – M/F & IC/M – 99% Condition – Double Trigger – Skeleton Buttplate – Pistol Grip – Beavertail Forend

Parker Repro DHE – 28ga – 28” & 26” – M/F & IC/M – 99% Condition – Double Trigger – Skeleton Buttplate – Pistol Grip – Beavertail Forend: Factory Canvas Dust Cover over Leather Factory Case SPECS:  14 7/8″ LOP x 1 3/8″ DAC x 2 1/4″ DAH – 5 lbs 12 ozs – SN: 28-3196 Price: $8,995 

JOSEPH LANG SIDELOCK 12G DOUBLE BARREL SHOTGUN
JOSEPH LANG SIDELOCK 12G DOUBLE BARREL SHOTGUN

JOSEPH LANG SIDELOCK 12G DOUBLE BARREL SHOTGUN: Gun is in great original condition. Model: 2nd Quality Sidelock Caliber Info: 12 Gauge Ejectors: Yes Condition: Preowned Metal Condition: Very Good Barrels: 28″ Action: Sidelock Triggers: Double Gauge: 12 Gauge Stock Comb: 1 3/8″ Stock Heel: 2 1/4″ Fore End: Checkered LOP: 14 5/8″ Rib: Game Weight: 6.5 LBS Chokes: IC/M Case: Leather Luggage Price: $6,500

Rizzini Artemis 28 Gauge OU Double Barrel Shotgun
Rizzini Artemis 28 Gauge OU Double Barrel Shotgun

Rizzini Artemis 28 Gauge OU Double Barrel Shotgun: Gorgeous baby frame Rizzini Artemis, 29″ barrels with 5 factory choke tubes, 6 Custom Briley choke tubes were $500, Grade 5 wood–pics don’t do it, Original wood recoil pad, 14″ LOP. 5lbs 12oz, A delight to hold & swing, 2 rounds of trap went thru barrels, Mint condition. Price: $3,500

Auction alert: AYA No. 2 sidelock 16g, NO RESERVE …

AYA 16g No. 2 Sidelock SxS Shotgun
AYA 16g No. 2 Sidelock SxS Shotgun

This nice looking 16g AYA shotgun is on Gunbroker.com now. It’s listed at NO RESERVE and the sale ends Wednesday, 3/24/2021 @ 3:21 PM EST.

The seller’s calling this side-by-side a No. 2, which AYA says is its “affordable sidelock double gun”. To me, it looks like a great grouse gun. It has a longish length of pull (14 3/4″) and it weighs just 5lbs 13oz. If I were bidding on it, I would ask for some more pics and info on it — specifically, I would want to see the proof marks, and I would want to know if the gun is tight, on the face and fully functional. I would also want to know if there are any issues with the barrels (bulges, dents, repairs).

AYA 16g No. 2 Sidelock SxS Shotgun
AYA 16g No. 2 Sidelock SxS Shotgun

I would ask about seller’s inspection/return policy, too. Sellers should give you 3 days to inspect a gun and allow you to return it within that timeframe if it has issues.

I’ve always heard good things about AYAs. Michael Yardley reviewed an AYA No. 1   for The Field back in 2008 and liked it. I guess the No. 2 is one step down from that gun.

AYA 16g No. 2 Sidelock SxS Shotgun
AYA 16g No. 2 Sidelock SxS Shotgun

AYA 16g No. 2 Sidelock SxS Shotgun: 28” barrels. 14 3/4 LOP. Choked at IC/M. 5 lbs 13oz’s. Balances and swings great. Costs 8k new ! FREE SHIPPING.

BTW: The same seller is also offering this 20g AYA No. 3, which is worth checking out.

A closer look: Not your normal 12g Fox Sterlingworth ….

A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model SxS Double Barrel American Shotgun
A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model SxS Double Barrel American Shotgun

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.

A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model SxS Double Barrel American Shotgun
A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model SxS Double Barrel American Shotgun

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.

A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model SxS Double Barrel American Shotgun
A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model SxS Double Barrel American Shotgun

This is a 12-gauge Fox Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush with automatic ejectors and it appears to be in excellent original condition.

A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model SxS Double Barrel American Shotgun
A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model SxS Double Barrel American Shotgun

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.

Sterlingworth page from a 1930 Fox Shotgun catalog
Sterlingworth page from a 1930 Fox Shotgun catalog

Here’s the link to it: A.H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Ejector Brush Model: Price $1,950

A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model SxS Double Barrel American Shotgun
A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model SxS Double Barrel American Shotgun

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).

A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model SxS Double Barrel American Shotgun
A. H. Fox/Savage Sterlingworth Deluxe Brush Model SxS Double Barrel American Shotgun

Good gun alert: 20g Browning BSS Sporter, $999.99

Browning ~ B S/S Sporter ~ 20 Ga
Browning ~ B S/S Sporter ~ 20 Ga

Get on this one fast. This 20g Browning BSS Sporter is priced right, and I guarantee it won’t be on the market for long.

Miroku of Japan made these boxlock SxSs for Browning, and they’re based on the classic Anson & Deeley boxlock design. Rugged and dependable, they’re only drawbacks are their weight — they are a bit heavy — and the stocks can be a bit thick.

Browning ~ B S/S Sporter ~ 20 Ga
Browning ~ B S/S Sporter ~ 20 Ga

This one’s special because it’s a Sporter, so it has a trimmer, English-style, straight-grip stock. This makes it a bit lighter than most 20g BSSs — and a bit better looking. It does look a bit used, but I don’t see any signs of abuse. If it checks out with your gunsmith, it should be a great all-around upland gun.

Browning ~ B S/S Sporter ~ 20 Ga: Chambers: 3″, Metal Condition: Some Bluing Loss, Wood Condition: Very Few Very Light User Marks, Bore Condition: Bright and Shiny, Barrels: 26″, Triggers: Single Selective, Stock: Checkered English Grip, Stock Dimensions: 14 1/4″ LOP, Fore End: Checkered, Butt Pad: Pachmayr Recoil Pad, Weight: 6 Lbs 10 Oz., Sights: Front Bead, Chokes: IC and LMOD. Price: $999.99

Browning ~ B S/S Sporter ~ 20 Ga
Browning ~ B S/S Sporter ~ 20 Ga

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

 

E.J. CHURCHILL PREMIER QUALITY OVER UNDER DOUBLE BARREL SHOTGUNS PAIR
E.J. CHURCHILL PREMIER QUALITY OVER UNDER DOUBLE BARREL SHOTGUNS PAIR

E.J. CHURCHILL PREMIER QUALITY OVER UNDER DOUBLE BARREL SHOTGUNS PAIR: BOTH GUNS ARE THE SAME DIMENSIONS, 28″ SOLID RIB, CHOKED .007″ AND .014″ with 2 3/4″ CHAMBERS, DOUBLE TRIGGERS, EJECTORS, FIELD FOREARM, PISTOL GRIP, CHECKERED BUTT MINT CONDITION MAKERS CASE, 7 LBS 4 0Z, DIMENSIONS: 2″ DAH,1 9/16″ DAC, 14 1/8″ LOP. Matched pair E.J. Churchill O/U The Premier Quality.  12 Bore game guns.  Gun I made in 1926, Gun II Made in 1929. Serial Nr. 4220 was made for Abercrombie & Fitch and 3173 for a Mr. Wilson in San Francisco. They were both originally pigeon guns with 32” barrels. They were matched up as a pair and re-barreled to 28” through Churchill, Atkin, Grant & Lang, and Don Masters chocked IC/M and probably restocked by the maker, work which was done for a Danish nobleman whose coat of arms are on the escutcheon.  Both guns have a full London proof.  The actions of these guns are exact copies of the Woodward O&U actions, and were made by the firm of Hills, who also made the actions for Woodward. It was said at the time that Woodward built the Over & Under guns for Bob Churchill. This may be indeed true, but it is not likely, I believe Hill did all the actioning and in addition, they both used the same outworkers. A marked difference is the ejector system, which differs from Woodward and shows the Churchill input, as Bob Churchill felt it needed improvement. In total only 15 Over & Under guns were built by Churchill before WWII, of which this pair is believed to be in the best condition of those remaining.  One of these guns is pictured in the book “The House of Churchill” by Don Masters. Price: $46,500

F.LLI PIOTTI Model BSEE, Boxlock, SxS, 16ga 29" Upgraded wood, Upgraded action shaping, 6#3oz Near Perfect condition
F.LLI PIOTTI Model BSEE, Boxlock, SxS, 16ga 29″ Upgraded wood, Upgraded action shaping, 6#3oz Near Perfect condition

F.LLI PIOTTI Model BSEE, Boxlock, SxS, 16ga 29″ Upgraded wood, Upgraded action shaping, 6#3oz Near Perfect condition: Serial #  A03. Barrel Length (in Inches):  29″,  Choked R  SKT(.005) Choked L  IM(.020), Trigger  DT (Double), Straight Grip, Splinter Forearm, English-style Smooth Concave Rib, Fine Scroll & Rosette Engraving, Upgraded wood, Upgraded action shaping, Checkered butt, Original box. Near PERFECT Condition. Weight  6#3oz. Dimensions  1 3/8 x 2 1/4 x 14 3/4 with 1/4 cast off. Mfg 2007, The ideal upland bird gun. Price: $14,900

Stephen Grant Classic Hammer Sidelever SxS with original Nitro Proofed Damascus Barrels
Stephen Grant Classic Hammer Sidelever SxS with original Nitro Proofed Damascus Barrels

Stephen Grant Classic Hammer Sidelever SxS with original Nitro Proofed Damascus Barrels Serial Number: 3822, Ejectors: No, Barrels: 30″, Barrel Type: Damascus, Action: back-action side lever with rebounding hammers, Gauge: 12 gauge, Stock Comb: 1 7/16″, Stock Heel: 2 1/4″, Stock Cast: 1/8″, LOP: 14 1/2″, Weight: 6 lbs. 14 oz., Choke Left: .003 Near Cyl., Choke Right: .003 Near Cyl.
Proof:Nitro: 2 1/2″, Minimum Wall Thickness Left: .030″, Minimum Wall Thickness Right: .028″. Price: $6,900

Webley and Scott 16 gauge SxS Boxlock Shotgun
Webley and Scott 16 gauge SxS Boxlock Shotgun

Webley & Scott 16 gauge SxS Boxlock Shotgun: Nice old prewar Webley & Scott 16 ga. Choked imp and full 29” barrels, DT, AE, LOP is 14 3/4”, leather pad, this piece has a third fastener, really nice old shotgun. Price: $3,895

Ithaca Model 280 is a side by side 20 Ga. shotgun
Ithaca Model 280 is a side by side 20 Ga. shotgun

Ithaca ~ 280 ~ 20 Ga. ~ Side-by-Side ~ Boxlock Shotgun: This Ithaca Model 280 is a side by side 20 Ga. shotgun. It has 25 inch barrels with a solid rib and 3 inch chambers. A checkered grip walnut straight grip stock and beavertail forearm. Has a very nicely engraved receiver with birds in flight. In over all good condition it comes as is.Ithaca-SKB checkered black plate. Weighs 6 lbs. 3 oz. Shows a little use and wear. Price: $1,699.99

Greifelt & Co. 20g Over Under: Check out this pretty little double …

GREIFELT #1 PRE WAR O/U 20 GAUGE VL&D IMPORT
GREIFELT #1 PRE WAR O/U 20 GAUGE VL&D IMPORT

I love old, German OUs–especially smallbores. And the 20 gauge you see here really has my heart pumping.

Greifelt & Co used to be a major German gunmaker. Founded in 1885 in Suhl, the company went bust in 1945 at the end of WWII. In those 60 years, they exported shotguns and rifles throughout the world, including to Von Lengerke & Detmold (which was purchased by Abercrombie & Fitch in 1929).

GREIFELT #1 PRE WAR O/U 20 GAUGE VL&D IMPORT
GREIFELT #1 PRE WAR O/U 20 GAUGE VL&D IMPORT

This gun is typical of the German-style OUs that companies like VL&D imported into the US. It looks like it’s built on a Blitz-style triggerplate action with double Kersten locks. I love the engraving and the carving on the metalwork as well as the horn drop points on the stock. All very classy.

German over-unders like this were part of the first wave of the OU revolution that started in Europe and the UK before the first World War and then boomed in the US in the 1950s with the Browning Superposed.

GREIFELT #1 PRE WAR O/U 20 GAUGE VL&D IMPORT
GREIFELT #1 PRE WAR O/U 20 GAUGE VL&D IMPORT

GREIFELT #1 PRE WAR O/U 20 GAUGE VL&D IMPORT26″ SOLID RIB, IC AND MOD, 2 1/2″ CHAMBERS, DOUBLE TRIGGER, EJECTORS, 3-PIECE FOREARM, ENGLISH GRIP, MAKER’S CASE, EXCELLENT ORIGINAL CONDITION, 5LBS 14 OZ, 3″ DAH, 2″ DAC, 14 1/2″ LOP. Price: $13,500

Good gun alert: 28g Gamba Principessa SxS …

Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS Boxlock
Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS Boxlock

Here’s what I call a can’t-go-wrong double. It’s a Renato Gamba Principessa 28 gauge built on a rugged Anson & Deeley action. It weighs six pounds and it looks pretty much new. Price — a very reasonable $1599.

Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS Boxlock
Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS Boxlock

Renato Gamba is Italian maker better known in the US for their Daytona OU target guns than their SxS game guns. I’ve seen a few of their boxlock SxSs. Each one has been a nice double, and I’m sure this one would be a great upland gun.

Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS Boxlock
Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS Boxlock

Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS BoxlockExcellent condition overall. Price: $1,599.99 
Manufacturer: Circa: 1981
Caliber: 28 Gauge
Chambers: 2 3/4″
Metal Condition: Excellent
Wood Condition: Excellent
Bore Condition: Excellent
Barrels: 26″ Blued Steel with Tapered Rib
Triggers: Single Non-Selective Trigger
Stock: Checkered Deluxe Walnut Straight Grip Butt Stock
Stock Dimensions:
DAC: 1 1/2″, DAH: 1 3/4″, Cast off: 3/8″, LOP: 13 1/4
Fore End: Checkered Walnut Semi-Splinter Fore Arm
Butt Pad: Leather Covered Butt Pad
Weight: 6 lbs.
Sights: Single Bead
Chokes: Fixed: Modified & Improved Cylinder

The season begins! First up: Mourning doves…

Dove Hunting Basics for Public Land, from Project Upland
Dove Hunting Basics for Public Land, from Project Upland

Quick: What’s the #1 game bird in the US?

Quail? Nope. Pheasants? Nah.

It’s the mourning dove, and this year hunters across 42 states will bag more than 20 million of them.

If your state allows dove hunting (mine doesn’t), here’s a quick guide to how to find birds.

DOVE HUNTING BASICS FOR PUBLIC LAND: Follow these dove hunting basics to shoot enough birds for dinner.

Angus, Tank, and the results of an afternoon hunt in west Texas
Angus, Tank, and the results of an afternoon dove hunt in west Texas

You’ve got to go to Maine’s Chandler Lake Camps…

One Maine's finest sporting camps. 6hrs from Boston in the North Maine Woods
One Maine’s finest sporting camps. 6hrs from Boston in the North Maine Woods

Roughing it is for suckers. I know of that, now.

I’m not used to nice accommodations, and on past hunting trips I’ve curled up with my Pointers to stay warm, eaten Beefaroni out of the can, and gagged while using outhouses ranker than rest-area porta pottys.

This year I wanted something better. So I headed Chandler Lake Camps in the North Maine Woods.

Chandler's: A 5-Pointer experience
Chandler’s: A 5-Pointer experience

The North Maine Woods are 4-6 hours from Boston, 3Xs the size of Rhode Island, and more populated with moose than people. Once you’re in them, a dirt-road empire rolls out before you in every which way.. It’s lorded over by logging trucks, crisscrossed with brook trout streams, and spotted everywhere with grouse and woodcock cover.

Some success after after a few days at Chandler's
Some success after after a few days at Chandler’s

Chandler Lake Camps is an outpost of comfort and graciousness amongst all of this. Built in 1902, it was an abandoned family retreat when current owners Jason and Sherry Bouchard bought in the ’90s. With hard work and grit, they rescued it from decades of neglect and turned it into one of Maine’s finest sporting camps.

For uplanders, Chandlers is a place to get into lots of birds, whether you do it by hiring one of the camp’s Registered Maine Guides or by grabbing a Delorme map book and asking Jason to highlight some likely looking spots like I did.

Lexi, Sky and I averaged 2-3 birds an hour — solid numbers considering it was our first time in the area. We hunted overgrown logging roads and shot into the woods to explore deep pockets of birdy-looking cover and the furthest cover we hit was only 15 miles away from the camp.

Guest cabin at Chandler
Guest cabin at Chandler

On top of great bird hunting, Chandler Lake Camps also has great accommodations. Guests are treated to their own hand-peeled, spruce log cabins, each with a wood stove, electric lights, complete indoor facilities and charging outlets for things like remote collars and GPSs.

Meals are served in the main lodge, and everyone eats together around a large, wooden table. Breakfast is to order, lunches packed for you, and dinner family style. There’s a different menu each night, and everything is homemade in the lodge’s kitchen–even the bread and bagels.

And while Chandler Lake Camps is far away from civilization, it does have internet connection to the outside world. So anyone who needs to stay in touch with home or work can check in.

Located southwest of Ashland, ME,
Located southwest of Ashland, ME,
An access point to the North Maine Woods. Dirt roads, moose & grouse cover lie ahead.
An access point to the North Maine Woods. Dirt roads, moose & grouse cover lie ahead.
Sunset at Chandler Lake Camps
Sunset at Chandler Lake Camps
Sky's first grouse of 2017, at Chandler Lake Camps
Sky’s first grouse of 2017, at Chandler Lake Camps
View from the front porch at Chandler Lake Camps
View from the front porch at Chandler Lake Camps
Guest cabin at Chandler
Guest cabin at Chandler
Classic wood cabins at Chandler
Classic wood cabins at Chandler
Classic wood cabins at Chandler
Classic wood cabins at Chandler
Boathouse at Chandler Lake Camps
Boathouse at Chandler Lake Camps
Deck off main lodge at Chandler Lake Camps
Deck off main lodge at Chandler Lake Camps
Classic wood cabins at Chandler
Classic wood cabins at Chandler

Video: Hunting Arizona Mearns’ Quail with Randy Newberg …

 

Video: Hunting Arizona Mearns' Quail with Randy Newberg ...
Video: Hunting Arizona Mearns’ Quail with Randy Newberg …

As it says on his website, “Randy Newberg is a hunter” and “…the voice of the public land hunter in America.” It looks like he also a bit of a TV star and a popular podcaster.

In this video, you can go along with him as he and his buddies do some quail hunting in AZ. As one commenter said “The cussin in these videos makes it so funny. So real. I love it.” I agree. It’s well done, and worth checking out.

Buy this gun! 20 gauge Beretta 686 Onyx OU, 2-bbl set …

Beretta 686 Onyx 20 gauge Over Under 2 Barrel Set
Beretta 686 Onyx 20 gauge Over Under 2 Barrel Set

Here’s one of the finest double-barrel shotguns you’re going to find. These Beretta 686s handle like OUs costing many times more. They’re also reliable, easy to fix, and with this kind of Onyx finish, just plain sexy. For grouse, woodcock, and quail, they’re just about ideal.

With two set of barrels, 26.5″ and 29.5″, and a price tag of just $1699.99, this one is extra special. That’s why I’m saying someone needs to buy this gun. If someone else doesn’t snatch it up soon, I just might be the one to do it.

Beretta 686 Onyx 20 Gauge Over Under 2 Barrel SetThis is a very nice Beretta 686 Onyx 2 barrel set. The pictured barrels are 26.5 inch matte black and the second set are 29.5 inch blue, both have vent ribs. The walnut stock and matching forearm are a nice grade of wood with a small hairline crack on the left side of the forearm. All in all a very nice shotgun at a very nice price.  Price: $1699.99
Caliber: 20 Gauge.

Beretta 686 Onyx 20 gauge Over Under 2 Barrel Set
Beretta 686 Onyx 20 gauge Over Under 2 Barrel Set

Chambers: 2 3/4 and 3 inch Over/Under with ejectors.
Metal Condition: Excellent.
Wood Condition: Very good with a small crack on the left side of the forearm.
Bore Condition: All are bright and shiny.
Barrels: 26.5 inch matte black and the second set are 29.5 inch blue.
Triggers: Single silver color.
Stock: Nice mid-grade walut with a checkered pistol grip.
Stock Dimensions:
15 inch LOP
Fore End: Matching checkered walnut with finger grooves.
Butt Pad: Replacement black rubber butt pad.
Weight: 6 Lbs 3 Oz with the 26.5 inch barrels.
Sights: Vent ribs with single front beads.
Chokes: Screw in, comes with 9 total chokes.
Extras: Comes with the second barrel and extra chokes.

Uplander. A quick video about what it’s all about…

Pheasant o2008 Pheasant opener in South Dakotapener in South Dakota
2008 Pheasant opener in South Dakota
A breeder I used to know was a blunt SOB. Within 30 minutes of our first meeting he cut me off mid sentence and said this: “Someday you’ll grow up and be done with that.”

We had been talking about pheasant hunting in South Dakota, and I had mentioned the numbers of birds we were killing out there. This was back in ’03, when we were seeing 4-500 pheasants a day on the ground we hunted. Limiting out wasn’t the problem. Limiting out before noon was.

But this arrogant breeder wasn’t impressed. He looked down on anyone who gauged success by the number of bird killed — especially if the birds were wild.

Back then, his attitude pissed me off. I get it now, though.

These days, even though I love to upland hunt, killing birds is far from my top priority. Feathers in hand are nice, and a dead bird every now and then does a lot to keep a bird dog interested in the game. but there’s a lot more that

Auction alert: 20 gauge Webley & Scott M700, 28″ bbls, nearly new…

WEBLEY & SCOTT Model 700 BLE, 20ga, 28" bbls
WEBLEY & SCOTT Model 700 BLE, 20ga, 28″ bbls

Here’s a chance to get a great SxS at a great price. This 20 gauge Webley & Scott Model 700 SxS is on Gunbroker.com now, and it’s being sold without a reserve. The listing ends on 7/26/2016 @ 5:16 PM.

Scott M700s are the Timex watches of SxS, and this one is ready to take whatever licking you can give it. It’s built on Anson & Deeley-style boxlock actions, one of the finest shotgun designs ever created, and it looks unused and all original.

WEBLEY & SCOTT Model 700 BLE, 20ga, 28" bbls
WEBLEY & SCOTT Model 700 BLE, 20ga, 28″ bbls

WEBLEY & SCOTT Model 700 BLE, 20ga, 28″ bbls: Up for auction is a beautiful Webley & Scott model 700 side x side shotgun. This is a 20 gauge with 28″ inch ejector barrels that are choked IC and Mod. The LOP is 14 3/4 and the DAH is 1 3/4. This gun is very light and has fantastic balance. The gun is in excellent condition with all original finish. This is a 1960’s vintage gun that is very high quality and very hard to find. You will not be disappointed with this fine shotgun.

WEBLEY & SCOTT Model 700 BLE, 20ga, 28" bbls
WEBLEY & SCOTT Model 700 BLE, 20ga, 28″ bbls

Pointers aren’t supposed to do this….

You hear all sorts of “truths” about Pointers: They’re not personable; they make lousy house dogs; they don’t retrieve (not naturally, anyway). Sky is my third pointer, and just like my first two, she has shown me that all these “truths” are total BS. Watch this video to see her dispel the third.

Bargain bird gun: A 12g Bernardelli Gamecock boxlock…

ernardelli Gamecock 12g SxS 28" Straight Grip
Bernardelli Gamecock 12g SxS 28″ Straight Grip

A lot of people think you have spend thousands of dollars to get decent SxS shotgun. While you certainly can do that, you can also spend a lot less. Just take a look at this Bernardelli Gamecock. It’s just $800 and an absolute steal.

I think twelve-gauge game guns like this are the most versatile shotguns you can guy. You can load them up to take pheasants or down to hunt grouse or quail. Typically, they run around 6.5lbs — so not too heavy to carry all day and not too light to shoot well or soak up recoil.

This one is on an Anson &  Deeley action, so you know it’s tough and reliable. I’m pretty sure it has ejectors, too. Overall, it look like a real nice gun at an insanely low price.

ernardelli Gamecock 12g SxS 28" Straight Grip
Bernardelli Gamecock 12g SxS 28″ Straight Grip

Bernardelli Gamecock 12g SxS 28″ Straight Grip: DT, SS, SF, 12 gauge. This shotgun seems to have spent its life in a closet. Other than normal handling wear throughout its life, she is immaculate. All numbers match, checkering, blueing, bores are gorgeous. She still opens and closes like new. I had Mike Orlen hone the chokes to IC and Mod. Mike did his normal mirror finish and perfect regulation. Documentation included. Serial # is 97596. Excellent birdgun to last a lifetime and gorgeous, original case coloring. Price: $800

 

 

Auction alert: 28g Ruger Red Label, 28″ bbls, No Reserve….

Ruger Red Label 28g, 28" bbls, Straigh English Grip, 1997
Ruger Red Label 28g, 28″ bbls, Straigh English Grip, 1997

Here’s another one of these awesome OUs. These doubles are magic wands in the grouse woods. Most of the ones I see have pretty poor wood — but not this one. The 28″ barrels and straight grip are also hard to find.

This over-under is on Gunbroker.com now with No Reserve. The listing ends 7/24/2016 @ 9:18 PM.

Ruger Red Label 28g, 28″ bbls, Straigh English Grip, 1997: This is an early gRed Label in a hard to find configuration. It comes with an english stock, 28″ barrels, 2 1/2″ drop and a 14 1/4″ LOP. Gun is about as nice as it gets. It comes with a very nice leather case with accessories and wooden cleaning rod as seen. Comes with 5 choke tubes.

Ruger Red Label 28g, 28" bbls, Straigh English Grip, 1997
Ruger Red Label 28g, 28″ bbls, Straigh English Grip, 1997
Ruger Red Label 28g, 28" bbls, Straigh English Grip, 1997
Ruger Red Label 28g, 28″ bbls, Straigh English Grip, 1997

The pointer sisters: An update…

Time flies, and as it does, our little puppy is getting bigger! Here are some more recent pics of Lexi & Sky.

Sky, one of our Pointer out of Superior Pointers
Sky, one of our Pointer out of Superior Pointers
Sky, one of our Pointer out of Superior Pointers
Sky, one of our Pointer out of Superior Pointers
Lexi, one our Pointer out of Superior Pointers
Lexi, one our Pointer out of Superior Pointers
Sky & Lexi, our Pointer out of Superior Pointers
Sky & Lexi, our Pointer out of Superior Pointers
Sky & Lexi, our Pointer out of Superior Pointers
Sky & Lexi, our Pointer out of Superior Pointers
Lexi, our Pointer out of Superior Pointers
Lexi, our Pointer out of Superior Pointers
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