Joined: 17 Mar 2017
Location: Endless Mountains of Pa
As most members know our family gun collection is based on L.C. Smith Double Guns, however J.P. Sauer, Boss and fine LeFever Double Guns have also played major parts in our family gun collection down thru the generations. Most of these guns were weeded out down thru the years by my Grandfather and Father, because they had Damascus Barrels. I am in the process of returning some of the originals to the collection.
Due to the purchase of our new home, the gun purchasing has been put on hold for a short time, I passed up a sweet 16 Gauge Boss Hammer gun just recently because of it.
If you happen to be looking to purchase a good double gun, and are trying to pick one up at a decent price I recommend a J.P. Sauer, especially in 16 Gauge. Best German Guns at reasonable prices are serious stuff.
Joined: 06 Aug 2004
Location: Kansas High Plains
The first sxs I ever bought was a 16ga Springfield (by Stevens); 28" barrels, M/F, double triggers - about as cheap and barebones a gun as you can find. That was a mistake, because it set me on this road of chasing down sxs double guns ; I certainly don't have nearly as many as some, but I have way more than I need.
That old gun has never failed to go bang and has put a lot of dinners on the table. I once took a limit of four wild prairie roosters with four shots from that basic old double; you can't ask much more of a gun than that. I've said many times that I sometimes think I still shoot it better than any of 'em. Despite that it's mostly relegated to back-up rolls these days, but it'll always have a place in my gun rack.
As for guns I wish I'd bought, I remember a pair of VERY early Savage Fox Model B's in 20ga and .410. Just old hardware store guns to most folks, but I sure did want those guns. Probably a good thing I was broke at the time or I'd own 'em !
_________________ I feel a warm spot in my heart when I meet a man whiling away an afternoon...and stopping to chat with him, hear the sleek lines of his double gun whisper "Sixteen." - Gene Hill, Shotgunner's Notebook
Joined: 01 Dec 2005
I know it's a 16 gauge thing here, but does anybody want a fairly high condition Williams & Powell (a best gun mfr from Liverpool -- not the same as William Powell) Jones underlever, bar action, hammer 10 gauge that has had its chambers sleeved down to 12 gauge 2 3/4 inch? It was originally a 10 gauge 2 7/8 inch. Barrels are 30 inch and beautiful damascus, still in original black powder proof. Chokes are .011 and .012, R&L respectively. Bores are .777 and .778. I did not measure wall thicknesses, but the gun was checked out by Dale Tate and pronounced fit. That documentation comes with the gun and there is other provenance info, too. Weight is 7 lbs. 8 oz. Balance seemed nice to me, and I was surprised at first to find the weight at 7 1/2 pounds. It is a beauty with nice typical small scroll engraving. I'd say case colors are at least 70%. It is an 1880's gun, with an old-fashioned musket-style slide bar type forend attachment. Wood is spectacular, straight grip and splinter forend, and I'd guess around a 14 inch LOP (didn't measure it) to an engraved widows peak steel buttplate. I used a Galco velcro leather slip-on pad when I shot it. I did not measure the drops, but they seem totally modern and not the "Kentucky Rifle" drops of old American doubles. The drop at my face was actually a bit high for me, and I like about 1.5" at my face, so there is plenty of room to increase the drop if need be. Gun comes with period, but likely not original, felt-lined fitted leather hard case in good condition, with snap caps and spare firing pins.
I've been shooting about 8000 psi 12 gauge 1 ounce smokeless loads in it. It works best with WWAA wads as their overpowder cups expand to fit the 10 gauge bores better than most Euro-wads. Euro-wads generally have larger diameter over-powder cup seals to fit their thin straight-walled hulls, but those cup seals are short and fairly rigid and don't expand as well as AA style wads. Best would be to use Federals/Estates, or Euro hulls (Ched, Fio, Kemen, Rio, Martignoni, Nobelsport) and the AA clones from Claybusters that have larger over-powder cups to seal in the thin Euro hulls.
The owner has died and his son is selling this gun. I brought it to the Duluth Double Gun shoot to try to help sell it. I have no pictures right now, as I just returned the gun to the owner yesterday -- dang! PM me if interested and surely I'll be able to get you more detail/pictures.
I thought it looked like $6000 when I first saw it and shot it, but after talking to Mark at Mark's Born Again Birdguns, and realizing it was really a chamber-sleeved 10 gauge, I think it's value is not that high. I tagged it at $4500 at the Duluth shoot. The gun got some interest, of course, but no takers. Not sure where the owner will price it now.
Last edited by MaximumSmoke on Mon Jul 31, 2017 9:05 am; edited 1 time in total
Joined: 01 Dec 2005
Don't have any, but love the idea of a Darne or Charlin, and would absolutely love to have a higher-level Manufrance Ideal -- all in 16's, of course -- and here I am, generally not a Franco-phile! Those guns are artful and off the beaten path, but I've shot them all, and they are functionally excellent as well as beautifully designed.
fin2feather, the first 16 I hunted with was a Stevens 311. It was actually Mom's gun. I shot a lot of birds with it until Mom eventually sold it. It did scratch my 16 gauge itch during my late teens. Not the nicest gun but reliable and much better than some hardware store guns that appeared to be the work of cavemen.
tramroad28, as far as the gun being the smallest factor of a serious bird hunter, I respectfully disagree. I am about as serious as possible: 100+ days per year. Spending that much time outdoors, a nice gun that carries well does make the experience more enjoyable. Especially when the hours are long and calories burned high. I also admire craftsmanship. That said, if all I had left to hunt with was that old Stevens, I would still be out there with a smile every day.
So what is the smallest factor afield? I wish I could answer that question for everyone, but that isn't possible. For me I guess it would be limiting out. I like doing so and do so often, but I have enjoyed spectacular hunts where my dog returned with a single bird from a covey rise and I called it good.
Anyway, I enjoy reading all of the different takes on these guns. Particularly the ones that get used. Keep the stories coming.
_________________ Only catch snowflakes on your tongue AFTER the birds fly south for the winter...
...That said, if all I had left to hunt with was that old Stevens, I would still be out there with a smile every day....
I was speaking of the upland equation...featuring a bird, a dog, a day of being there, friends/memories, the birdhunter, a gun and more.
In other words, your "That said....."....says it all as to what I meant.
The scattergun....is simply in the mix someplace.
"Small" may come to mind as so many folks often have so many ITs or, new next bests and that reality would never rank a shotgun at the top tier of three important factors.
Purely an observation and opinion.
I wish, at times, to never have made or needed to make the step to another scattergun.
I wish that I had settled on one SxS, be it of whatever name, 50+ years ago.
I wish it had been a scattergun well worn and proudly marked by my Father's experiences.
Then, I personally would raise the scattergun to say, #4 in importance.
Joined: 24 Mar 2010
Location: Northwest PA
Okay folks let's have a little fun. We all know that Fox, Smith, and Parker have a big following here. However, lets hear some good thoughts on other doubles, side by sides in particular.
I will confess a mild agenda. I may scratch the itch for something new (old actually, but you get the point). Or not. There are some nice guns out there under different names. Baker, Union Armera, Mauser, whatever. Lets hear from some folks with the non-mainstream stuff, and the merits. Go!
I'm not sure if an Ithaca Flues is considered non-mainstream. I think in the years both Parker shotguns and Ithaca Flues guns were produced, the Flues outsold the Parker (based on the serial number ranges for each gun). Regardless, my 16 gauge flues from 1915 weighs in at 5.8 pounds and is a nice carry for grouse and woodcock. The drop is a little much, but a Beretta Gel-tek cheek pad helps considerably.
Joined: 02 Jun 2016
Location: Boreal Shield of Ontario
I am quite fond of my Simson model 70, 16 bore, 32in barrels, IM/M. It was my main duck gun for years, I will be taking it out for Geese in a month with #5 Kent Bismuth loads.
My other recent addition in the last year is a Belgium C. Masquelier, 16 bore, side-plated, 27in barrels , M/IC. I have been smitten by this gun.
My stable of various bores include Merkel, Simson, JP Sauer model 60's, JP Sauer Royals, Beretta, Arizaga, Ugartechea, Astra, Savage, Vapen Depoten, etc.... but my favourite 12 bore is my Victor Sarasqueta, 27.5 in barrel, DT, extractor. I have shot a truck load of grouse with this gun.
_________________ GOD made a 16 gauge and 2 Pudelpointers and then he rested.
Joined: 08 Oct 2006
Location: Tappahannock, Virginia
Lots of other good options. My criteria begins with:
Straight grip stock
Walnut and Steel!
Any gun, within my price range, with those and About 6lbs or less, and you've got my attention! As long as the gun is in serviceable condition and tight I doubt I'd ever wear any one gun out in my lifetime.
Seem to be leaning toward the German and French guns in my recent searches. Just picked up my first hammergun, a belgian FN 16ga from a member here. Have looked seriously at a FN boxlock, but couldn't find the one for me.
I have my American guns and confess to being a big fan of Fox. I also like Remington, have three, and am always on the lookout for the right one to add to my collection.
But I was idly speculating last week while sitting, bored, on an airplane, that I could probably be happy if I concentrated all my collecting instinct into those guns from Fox, Manufrance Ideals and Lindner/Charles Daly.
I have a high grade Ideal (6R EE Excelsior) from about 1921 and a Diamond Quality Lindner Daly from around 1906 and they are spectacular guns to use. I don't talk about them much here because those two are 12's but it's a joy to both look at and use them. The stocker who refinished the wood on my Ideal said he's never seen a nicer piece of walnut. I am actively searching France for just the right 16 Ideal that would make a good companion for my 12 gauge. And a 16 Lindner Daly would be good to have in the safe!
I looked for Ideals for a long time before I bought mine. Eventually concluded that if I was serious about finding one, I needed to look in France, not here. Just too few here. I've brought a half dozen guns over from France so far. But I'm still looking for the keeper Ideal 16 for myself.
_________________ "The world cries out for such:he is needed, & needed badly- the man who can carry a message to Garcia"
Fox Sterlingworth 16
2 x Pieper Boxlock 16
Heym Boxlock 16
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