J Blanch & Son,
29 Gracechurch Street, London
12 bore Side Lock Ejector
‘12/20’ Model
no. 6782. No.1 of Pair.

Approximate date of manufacture: 1912-13

Click on these images for more detail.

Heritage Guns' Comment

Please note: Since this gun's original listing, the stock has been adjusted to give an almost neutral cast with very slight cast-off for a right-handed user and the drops at face and heel have been slightly increased.

This gun is a fine example of the so-called ‘12/20’ mechanism designed and patented in 1906 by that prolific inventor, William Baker. This mechanism was used by a wide swathe of the British guntrade in their better quality sidelocks and it was a very successful design. The ‘12/20’ name comes from the writings of Sir Gerald Burrand who wrote extensively about the gunmakers and their designs and the name was adopted by several London gunmakers to describe the model, notably Grant, Churchill and Lancaster. It derives from the inherent strength of the backaction layout of the lock parts which meant that a gun could be made very strong for its weight and so could be built lighter, hence the idea of a 12b with the weight of a 20b. The mechanism also provides an assisted opening facility if the gun is wholly or partly unfired and is only cocked when the barrels are closed, meaning the mainsprings are at rest when the gun is broken or in parts.
The action is profusely covered with best bouquet & scroll as was the norm for this highly respected ‘Maker in the pre-WW1 period and this coupled with the fine original steel barrels and lovely figured wood make it a very well balanced and 'shootable' gun for either game or clays. Presented in its Maker’s leather case with some accessories.



The action is of traditional design and features: 
Double triggers bolted by an automatic top tang safety slide;
Top lever opening, operating a 'Purdey Bolt' by way of a 'Scott Spindle' and Concealed 3rd bite;
Baker’s patented ‘12/20’ lockwork with Interceptor sears;
Baker’s patented ejectors;
Anson pushrod forend catch.
Gun weight 6lb 11oz        
Engraving style
Best bold foliate and bouquets. Forend tip, toplever and top rib gold inlaid ‘1’. Lock plates signed in scrolling banner ‘J BLANCH & SON’.
Gold inlaid ‘SAFE’. Forend iron stamped ‘PATENT’.
Trigger pulls measure approximately: Front trigger 3 lbs Rear trigger 4 lbs.
The original steel barrels are 30" in length, chambered for 2 " (65mm) cartridges and are of brazed 'dovetail' lump construction with soft soldered ribs.
Top rib is of the smooth, concave, game type.               
Original London proof for 2 ” nitro powder cartridges in 1912-13.

Approximate barrel measurements at date of publication:

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

RH Barrel

(1/4, IC)

LH Barrel

(1/2, Mod)

Straight Hand Stock and Splinter Forend are crafted from highly figured walnut. The stock is very lightly cast-off for a right-handed user and features well-defined drop points, a white metal oval engraved ‘J.G.C.’ and is finished with a traditional 1” leather covered recoil pad.

Highly Figured Walnut

The 24 lines per inch chequering has been refreshed to the normal sidelock pattern. 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
15 1/8"
15 1/8"
15 5/8"
Drop at Comb
Drop at Face
Drop at Heel
1 1/2"
1 5/8"
Cast-off at Comb
Cast-off at Heel
1/16-1/8" (approx.)

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:
W Baker’s ejectors patent no. 21967 of 1905;
 W Baker’s ‘12/20’ lockwork patent no. 26902 of 1906;
 'Purdey Bolt' patent no. 1104 of 1863;
 'Scott Spindle' patent no. 2752 of 1865;
 ‘Purdey Concealed 3rd Bite’ patent no 397 of 1878;
 Anson's forend fastener patent no. 3791 of 1872.