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autoloader
March 16, 2007, 10:31 PM
I have a gun of my freinds that I was going to restore but another freind said I should find out it's value before I do anything.
So here is what I know about this gun. It is a 12 guage double barrel Nitro Hunter shotgun, made by Lefever I believe. The mechanics of this gun is in good working order but the outside of receiver & barrels are in poor shape which have their share of rust and some pitting. The forearm and butt stock look ok. The last shown patented date is May of 02. The serial number on all three pieces is 377.

Please advise me of it's value and would it be worth more restored.

Thanks, autoloader

robroy15
March 17, 2007, 04:59 PM
Do not "restore" this gun. Use oil and 000 steel wool to remove surface rust. Polish and reblue this gun and you will not have a collector item. This will lose 50-80% of the value.

Look for a real old shotgun expert to evaluate this gun.

Bill DeShivs
March 17, 2007, 06:08 PM
Robroy is correct. Restoration can only be done by experts. Using emory cloth and wire brushes, and slapping on a coat of cold blue from Walmart has ruined way too many guns.
Bill

autoloader
March 17, 2007, 08:07 PM
Thanks, royboy 15 & Bill for your responses. I know that it could never be a collectors item because some rust is just to deep to get out with out making barrels to thin. I will not do anything to this gun but wish someone with knowledge of old shotguns could tell me it's value so I can tell my freind. I know he would never sell this gun because it is a family heirloom and he was curious of the value. If you can help Thanks.

RJay
March 17, 2007, 09:06 PM
The reference in the Standard Catalog shows the Nitro Hunter was a trade name used by H&D Folsom on firearms furnished to the Belknap Hardware Company of Louisville Ky. Pull the wood and look for proof-marks. If you find any such as an ELG in an oval then it's a Belgium import. No proof marks then it's U.S. made. Since Folsom owned Crescent Firearm Co. the odds are very high it's a Crescent firearm. In the condition you describe IMO you could only improve the value by restoring it. If it has internal hammers then may have been made in the late 20's to the mid 30's. Since all of Crescents records were destroyed in the 1940's that will be as much information as you will find. I have seen old trade name shotguns in poor shape sell for as little as 50 dollars at gun shows. P.S. A little more research shows Nitro Hunter under guns made by Crescent Firearms Company for the above hardware company. Hope that helps

pipoman
March 18, 2007, 11:51 PM
Here is a 1919 postcard I own. It is one of a series, I'm unsure how many are in the series. One of the cards is Teddy Roosevelt shooting a Nitro Hunter. There is a pretty active group of collectors of Belknap Hardware collectibles. Nice Nitro Hunter 12 ga dbls. trade among collectors $150 to $250 unless it is something really unusual (engraving, etc.)

http://users.powwwer.net/ckds/ebay/bel.jpg

autoloader
March 19, 2007, 12:03 AM
Thanks for the response and post card.