Heritage Guns Update 16th April 2019

With only just over a week to go until the Southern Spring Classic S/S show at Deep River NC, I have been working frantically to get all my new stock finished in time to ship it off to the USA this Friday.

The weather here has improved greatly in recent weeks and the spring bulbs are in full bloom. However we have had several unexpected frosts that have killed off some of the more delicate flowers and damaged others: my wife’s much loved magnolia looks particularly sad!

Tilly the labrador has been putting on some ‘condition’ since the end of the shooting season and has earned the nickname ‘Plumpy’ which amuses her not at all! For a labrador that loves her food as much as she, being put on a gentle diet is tantamount to physical abuse but I have assured her that is in her best interests. She does not agree!

Both Bob Nay of MacNab Fine Firearms and I are very excited about this year’s show, not only because of the interest that has been generated for many of my lovely new stock guns but also the attendance of our three exciting guests: Donald Dallas, the famous author of so many wonderful books on our gunmaking heritage; J-P Daeschler who has recently taken over as CEO of John Dickson & Son and its other associated gunmaking names such as MacNaughton and last but not least, in a private capacity, the highly respected, English trained barrel-maker, Mike Birch. They will be found at the joint stands of Heritage Guns and MacNab Fine Firearms in the sponsors’ tent, nearest the club house.

Donald will be displaying his full range of titles and will be delighted to sign your very own copies and take orders for any of his other books. With all his experience of rooting through the dusty records of the illustrious names that appear on his books’ covers, he is a fascinating person to talk to.

J-P will be there with information on the new guns that Dickson are making and also giving advice on their in-house restoration services for enthusiast’s guns. He will also be bringing a copy of the gun records and will be happy to research your gun while you wait!

Mike will not be exhibiting as such but is happy to give advice on the practicalities and realities of rebarrelling and other barrel services.

So what lovely new eye-candy do I have for you this April?

Well, since the Vintage Cup last September we have completed the following:

 An 1892 Boss & Company 12b Sidelever SLE: lovely Sumner engraving and beautiful wood. Cased in Oak & Leather.

Boss & Co 12b SLE no 4217

An 1867 12b damascus barrelled, thumblever Purdey. Great condition and cased in Oak & Leather.

J Purdey & Sons 12b Hammergun no 7545

An 1898 J Woodward toplever 12b SLE with two barrel sets, Teague chokes and Leather case blocked for both barrel sets. This is one of a pair of Woodwards that I have which will be offered as individual guns but the No. 2 gun will be offered to the purchaser of gun No. 1 at a special price, once completed. They both have additional barrel sets and have new stocks & forends.

J Woodward & Sons 12b SLE no 5241

Next a very pretty 1891 SLE by the great Frederick Beesley who, as many of you will know, invented the self-opening action in 1880 that Purdey have been making ever since! 
Replacement 28" barrels and a very nice replacement stock make this a really shootable gun for game or clays.

Frederick Beesley (From Purdey’s) 12b SLE no 1237

This is the very interesting Holland & Holland No 2 Royal from 1892 that I have mentioned before. Filling the gap between the 1st type Royal and the later No.2 Royal, it has features from both which makes it a very rare beast.

Holland & Holland 12b No 2 Royal no 14495 in its relined leather and brass case.


Holland & Holland 12b No 2 Royal no 14495

And this 1893 William Powell & Son SLE with non-functioning hammers is probably a completely unique gun, certainly by this highly respected gunmaker, and having the records confirm its original specification puts the icing on the cake.

Unique William Powell & Son 12b SLE with non-functioning hammers no 9622

Last of the guns new to the USA is this lovely 12b hammergun by J Lyell & Co. Great engraving and fine wood make this Scottish gun a must for hammergun enthusiasts.

J Lyell & Co 12b Hammergun no 1676

Other guns on display will include:

Henry Atkin (From Purdey’s) 12b SLE no 397, cased;
16b SLE by Henry Clarke, 30” TIG sleeved;
12b 30” damascus barrelled roundaction ejector by J Dickson & Son, cased;
20b hammergun by J Harkom & Son, cased;
28b boxlock non-ejector by E&G Higham;

Beautiful 16g SLNE by Holland & Holland, cased;
12b Bar-in-wood hammergun by William Powell & Son;
J Lang & Sons 12g SLE, cased:
1884 12g J Purdey & Sons Self-opening SLE, cased in oak & leather;
Fascinating 12g 30” damascus early BLE by AJ Russell with grip safety!

A lovely 16g James Purdey, damascus barrelled 1872 BiW Hammergun;
Westley Richards 12g from before 1887;
1st Type 12g H&H Royal: 2 ¾” x 28” replacement steel barrels and 15” replacement stock;
12g hammergun by William Rochester Pape;
A lovely 12g 1890’s Underlever SLE by James Woodward and Sons, the ‘Automatic’ model, cased;
12b round action ejector by John Dickson & Son TIG sleeved 28” with beautiful, original French walnut stock.
An 1889 12g H&H 1st Type Royal SLE, replacement wood and 28” x 2 ¾” steel barrels, beautiful gun;
12g Leech SLE, 28” x 2 ¾” rebarrelled by the makers with highly figured replacement stock.

I look forward to seeing you all at the Southern S/S Championships at Deep River NC 25th to 28th April.