John Blanch and Son, 29 Gracechurch Street, London
16 bore Back action, Sidelever
Hammergun no. 35814
Date of production: pre - 1887, likely 1884.

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Heritage Guns' Comment

Around 1999 I started collecting shotguns by J Blanch and Son as I have had a great affinity their style and design ever since getting to know my late father's back-action hammerless sidelock.
This particularly beautiful little single barrel 16b was one of the first guns by this little known London gunmaker that I acquired and after various gunsmithing and restoration work it became my 'go-to' gun for days when I expected little shooting and did not want the weight of a full blown double dragging me down. However over recent years, with changes in the type of shooting I have available to me, it has been out of the guncase less and I felt that it should find a new companion for its sport!
In the UK guntrade, guns that did not fit within the speciality of the Maker were bought in from specialists in the trade and this little hammergun was undoubtedly supplied, fully finished and ready for the sales rack, by W&C Scott of Birmingham. The serial number on knuckle and forend loop confirm this as they are for W&C Scott's 1884 production.
With its stylish sidelever, highly figured stock and beautiful damascus barrel, this gun is much more than just a 'shooter' and will give many years of sterling service with normal maintenance and care.


The action is of traditional design and features:
Much original hardening colour;
Finely chiselled percussion fence and breech end;
Back action, rebounding lock with low level hammer;
Side lever opening, operating a 'Purdey Bolt';
Two-leg cartridge extractor;
Snap on 'Sugar-tongs' forend catch.
Gun weight 4lb 14oz
Engraving style Foliate scroll.
Trigger pull measures approximately: 3 ¾ lb
The damascus barrel is 30" in length and is chambered for 2 ¾" (70mm) cartridges.
London reproof for 70mm nitro powder cartridges in 2001.

Approximate barrel measurements at date of publication:

Nominal Proof Size
Bore Diameter 9"
from Breech
Minimum Wall Thickness
Choke Constriction

Single Barrel

17.2mm (0.677")
0.010" (IC)

The original Straight Hand Stock and Splinter Forend are crafted from highly figured walnut. The stock features a vacant white metal oval, a well-matched ½" wood extension, is finished with an iron butt plate secured by engraved screws and is cast-off for a right-handed shot. The forend has two small inlet repairs to its edges and a horn tip.

Highly Figured Walnut

The 22 lines per inch chequering is refreshed to its original design.
The stock is finished with a traditional linseed oil based preparation as used on best guns by one of the top English makers. This finish uses no grain fillers to achieve its deep, smooth lustre, only many hours of alternate build and flatting off of the surface.

Approximate stock measurements at date of publication:

Pull to Heel
Pull to Bump
Pull to Centre
Pull to Toe
14 3/8"
14 1/4"
14 5/8"
Drop at Comb
Drop at Face
Drop at Heel
1 3/8"
1 5/8"
Cast-off at Comb
Cast-off at Heel
1/8" (approximate)

For the purposes of these measurements, 'Drop at Face' is the 'drop' measurement taken on a line perpendicular to the
line joining the trigger and centre of the butt at approximately 8" from the trigger (front trigger on a double trigger gun).

Patents Exhibited include:
'Purdey Bolt' patent no. 1104 of 1863;
Stanton's rebounding lock patent no. 367 of 1867.