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07-Sep-2020 14:22

That illustration noted as an improvement the gun's low hammers below the range of sight. Subsequent posts will deal with the gentle restoration of this shotgun.

The butt does not have the iron plate characteristic of muzzleloading guns and relatively early breechloaders like the C. Heel and toe plates were popular in the late 1860's, largely giving way in the 1870's to checkered butt pates made out of horn or ebonite.

Faithful readers of "Hits and Misses" will doubtless recall my earlier post, "Dating a Double-Barreled Hammer Gun" ( This post is about dating a 12 gauge hammer gun by the well-known and prolific maker W. To adapt John Campbell's phrase in On the rib is "W. Scott & Son London." In 1862, William Middleditch Scott took over the Birmingham firm established in the 1840's by his father William Scott and his uncle Charles Scott.

That post concerned a 10 gauge double with the virtually unknown name of C. Here, courtesy of that wonderful resource, Cornell Publications, is the cover of Scott's 1872 catalog, and, except for fastening the fore end with a wedge, the upper gun on the right (front ) cover is very close to mine: Although my Scott has a moderate degree of engraving, it has no street address preceding the "London" on the rib, an indication that it is what the 1872 catalog terms a "plain gun." It's easy to identify a Scott gun when the firm's name is on the locks and on the barrel rib.

Baker suggests in (Safari Press, 2000) that a strong clue to a gamekeeper's gun is a stock so worn that the checkering is nearly gone--and that is true of my gun: only the border lines remain of the checkering. By following the same procedure I described in my earlier post: first, by looking at the proof marks (assuming there are some, that is: there won't be on guns made in America); and second, by trying to date the gun's salient features.

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Obviously, a gun can't be earlier than its latest feature.The "13" and "13B"means that the nine inches from the breech the diameter of the bore is that of a 13 gauge, or .710".(A 12 would be .729".) The "14M" means that the muzzle diameter is .693".It remained in use despite its slowness relative to a snap action closure because it was both silent in operation and strong.