To cut Damascus Percussion Shotgun, or not to cut ?

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N8Gunner

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I recently acquired a 36" 12 ga double barrel percussion shotgun, in good working condition, albeit had a cracked forend on the one piece stock, which I repaired with epoxy.
The shotgun is unmarked , except for a couple of small proofs and the word "Laminate Steel" on gold colored inlay on the rib.
I assume its likely just another "Belgian clunker" , and this morning I have dug out a new sawzall blade and taped the barrels off to 24", full intending to cut it off
and shoot it with "buck and ball" and buckshot......

However , I have decided to give it more thought and ask opinions on this forum before I do anything to it.
Here are the pictures of the barrels.
Advise and opinions are welcome

Thanks !









 
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Capnball

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I recently acquired a 36" 12 ga double barrel percussion shotgun, in good working condition, albeit had a cracked forend on the one piece stock, which I repaired with epoxy.
The shotgun is unmarked , except for a couple of small proofs and the word "Laminate Steel" on gold colored inlay on the rib.
I assume its likely just another "Belgian clunker" , and this morning I have dug out a new sawzall blade and taped the barrels off to 24", full intending to cut it off
and shoot it with "buck and ball" and buckshot......

However , I have decided to give it more thought and ask opinions on this forum before I do anything to it.
Here are the pictures of the barrels.
Advise and opinions are welcome

Thanks !





Why cut it? Wouldn't it be a better sporting piece if it was longer? I restored a musket that had been "Sporterized" or "cut down" to use as a cheap hunting gun. The whole time I was restoring the gun (to a two band musket) I pained over why it was cut in the first place. Longer guns are more accurate, at any range! And unaltered guns are worth more! I also have a Springfield conversion from flint to percussion that I'd classify as a "Relic" it can never be made to shoot again and really it's in such bad shape it's hardly worth displaying. The fact it, because that gun is complete and as altered by a federal armorer, it's worth more then the gun I restored to working condition. From what I can see of the photos, it's a very nice piece. If it were mine and I intended to shoot it, I'd clean the gun up, inside and out. Have the barrel "bore scoped" by a real gunsmith then take it to the range and let it do what it was designed to do. Old guns always attract a crowd. Either way, you got a nice gun. I love Damascus stuff.
 

Feltwad

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Cannot understand this ,the gun looks sound and would be a shooter . Yes it is of Belgian manufacture but it has more history than a whole host or repros so why not butcher one of them . Man alive what will some muzzle loaders think of next that gun needs to be left has it is .
Feltwad
 

JamesA

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I recently acquired a 36" 12 ga double barrel percussion shotgun, in good working condition, albeit had a cracked forend on the one piece stock, which I repaired with epoxy.
The shotgun is unmarked , except for a couple of small proofs and the word "Laminate Steel" on gold colored inlay on the rib.
I assume its likely just another "Belgian clunker" , and this morning I have dug out a new sawzall blade and taped the barrels off to 24", full intending to cut it off
and shoot it with "buck and ball" and buckshot......

However , I have decided to give it more thought and ask opinions on this forum before I do anything to it.
Here are the pictures of the barrels.
Advise and opinions are welcome

Thanks !









I wouldn't cut it, perhaps not even shoot it. That is a real collector's piece. Just my opinion. I gave one my dad bought years ago to my son, it's a muzzle loader. I don't collect guns, I shoot them.
 

SDSmlf

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36" 12 ga double barrel percussion shotgun, in good working condition……. I have dug out a new sawzall blade and taped the barrels off to 24", full intending to cut it off
and shoot it with "buck and ball" and buckshot..
Other than for shooting it with ‘buck and ball’, why do you feel the need to cut the barrels down? They have not made a shotgun like you have in probably over a hundred years. Why not cut down a Pedersoli or some other gun that you can at least get replacement barrels for? Or trade it for one already cut down or with damaged barrels?

You requested opinions. My opinion is don’t molest this gun by cutting the barrels down.
 

appalichian hunter

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Never been one too cut down shotgun barrels, that seems like a decent double, I would leave it in its original length and enjoy the gun for what it was built for. I am a double barrel sort of guy and would cringe at the thought of tape and a saws all with a double laying on the bench in front of me.
 

Loyalist Dave

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You might want to check the bores first. What are they choked? OR you may find some not so good pitting near the muzzles and thus to restore it to shooting you need to cut off a few inches. If they are viable barrels and not choked so tight as to be only for large waterfowl, I'd not do anything to the barrels. IF they are choke full/full, I'd maybe see if somebody would buy it for a proper price and then put that ca$h to perhaps a repro with the chokes that you do want, or cylinder/cylinder and you have a single ball and buckshot gun. (Buck and ball is notoriously not very good for game)

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Please Please Please do not cut!
Sell it or shoot it as is or the world will have one more butchered piece of history.
 

ord sgt

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Tap lightly on the barrel with a small hammer. If they "ring" with a clear note, the barrels should be firmly attached to the rib. If the note sounds "off" then the barrel is not firmly attached to the rib. This will help in the decision of "do I have a wall hanger" or do I have something safe to shoot.
A gunsmith good with shotguns will be able to reattach the barrels to the rib and maybe tell you if it looks good enough to safely shoot.
 

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