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Mark Hamer
July 27, 2002, 01:22 AM
I have been handed down an antique shotgun. This weapon has no mfgr's name anywhere on it that I can see. I found a patent date of June 20th 1883 on one side, the other side says Prize Machine Gun. In between the barrel's (it's a dbl) it says Prize Quality---Laminated Steel. I haven't torn it down in quite some time, but just remember some stamping on the area hidden when put together. The butt plate has a bird dog sitting next to a tree with a bird hanging upside down. I am considering having a local gunsmith turn it into a muzzle loader as it appears to be a Damacuss barrel. Anyone out there that can be of help it would be greatly appreciated. Mark:)

Guyon
July 27, 2002, 10:40 AM
Hi Mark. Welcome to TFL!

I personally can't tell you anything, but you might have better luck with this inquiry over on Harley's section of TFL. If the moderators don't move this one, try posting the same questions on the Harley Nolden Instititute for Firearms Research forum here at The Firing Line.

fal308
July 29, 2002, 10:10 AM
From Side by Sides of the World by Charles E. Carder;
"Prize Machine Gun Co.: A 12 gauge sidelock with Damascus barrels. The name is stamped on the frame. Quality and history unknown."
More than likely what's known as a hardware gun. Harley has a much better explanation but basically an inexpensive firearm built by one company to be sold by a middleman.

James K
July 30, 2002, 08:30 PM
I recommend against shooting it with any load of any powder. Converting it to a muzzle loader would be a bit pointless, since it would not make the barrel walls any stronger.

You could (at considerable expense) have the barrels sleeved to 20 gauge, but that would cost much more than the gun is worth.

I suggest hanging it above the fireplace and telling folks how your great granddaddy shot outlaws with it.

Jim