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Old December 28, 2011, 09:46 PM   #1
paddywhacked777
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old breakaway 12 ga. found in basement

I was recently cleaning out my grandmother's basement when i happened across an old breakaway 12 ga that was in some serious need of love. Couldn't find any manufacturer or proof marks, only a five digit serial number stamped on the barrel and behind the trigger on the receiver (43351). What started out as a simple stock swap has turned into a full tune up and rebluing of the exposed metal. Problem is, after removing all the wood, i can't figure out how to remove the barrel from the receiver. It seems to be attached by a screw, fitted into a slotted channel, with a piece of metal wedged into the head of the screw. Shoddy description, i know. Pics will follow as soon as i get them uploaded. Any help with identification or help with the barrel removal would be appreciated.
1st sn and the pin/screw i mentioned
2nd sn

Last edited by paddywhacked777; December 28, 2011 at 10:23 PM.
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Old December 29, 2011, 07:12 AM   #2
darkgael
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pics

I am looking forward to the pics to follow. It might be a wonderful restoration.
Cannot help but wonder what the bore looks like.
Pete
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Old December 29, 2011, 08:58 AM   #3
jaguarxk120
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Time for the PB Blaster, soak all the screws and pins with it. let set for a couple of days so the PB Blaster can do it's work.

Somewhere under all that rust are some stampings telling you who made the gun. It may be a contract gun made by one of the gun makers.

Crescent was one of the major players at the time of mfgr. They made guns for any hardware store or retailer that wanted their own brand on the gun. Crescent would make the gun and stamp what ever they wanted on it.
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Old January 4, 2012, 12:58 AM   #4
paddywhacked777
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Update: After some work with some precision tools i found that the pin was threaded and that the piece of metal wedged in the head was the remnants of some kind of key arm. Got the pin out and got the barrel separated from the receiver. After doing some work with rem oil and 0000 steel wool, the barrel revealed some stamped writing under the rust that says -Fine Twist-. Receiver hasn't revealed anything yet. Still working on it though. Did some research and it might be a Harrington and Richardson. No indication as to a year on it and i would love to be able to cross reference the serial number somewhere. The pics i've found online don't look the same, though. I'm a bit concerned with that. Any additional info would be amazing. If anyone knows anything, please help a fella out.

Edit: After some research i have found two things. First, fine twist refers to the barrel making process (sometimes referred to as damascus barrels), where a steel band is coiled and forge welded to make a pipe shape. This results in a lower pressure threshold for the barrel. Second i am nearly positive that it is a Forehand Arms (later to become Harrington and Richardson). Crossed referenced some photos and it's a ringer. Not worth much and more than likely won't be a shooter. Perhaps with some low pressure loads. Probably still worth the resto to have done it. Would like to get a range of dates for the serial numbers, so i can figure out the year it was made. If anyone knows where i could find them, i would be extremely grateful.

Last edited by paddywhacked777; January 4, 2012 at 07:58 AM.
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Old January 4, 2012, 08:05 AM   #5
Opinated
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Hopkins and Allen used a screw with a built-in folding handle to hold the barrel to the action. Note the channel for the folding handle on yours. I think Numrich has parts diagrams for the H&A.
The screw on yours is obviously not original.
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Old January 4, 2012, 08:18 AM   #6
Mike Irwin
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"-Fine Twist-."

Given this gun's rust issues, there is no way in hell that it should be fired.

The Damascus process in inherently a chancy process of getting all the welds perfect. Voids or slag inclusions in the welds can cause avenues for rusting, which would only be magnified by the amount of rust that this gun seems to have overall.

Unless you're able to get the barrel magnafluxed and a clean bill of health, I wouldn't even fire it with black powder loads.
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Old January 4, 2012, 09:50 AM   #7
paddywhacked777
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Opinated: H&A acquired Forehand Arms in the early twentieth century. I'm not sure if this particular model is before the acquisition or not. The reason the screw arm isn't the same is because someone over torqued it and snapped the arm off, leaving behind what you see in the picture above.

Mike, I honestly have no intent on ever sending a charge through it. Just going to dress it up and leave it out for show. Considering the extremely low value of these guns, even in beautiful condition, I'm going to use it for some canvas for some wood burning and metal engraving.

Last edited by paddywhacked777; January 4, 2012 at 09:58 AM.
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Old January 5, 2012, 07:36 AM   #8
Mike Irwin
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That's good to hear, paddy.
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Old January 5, 2012, 08:35 AM   #9
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Paddy - while you're at it you might want to hit that vise with a little Naval Jelly and a new coat of rust-inhibitive spray paint!
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Old January 5, 2012, 09:19 AM   #10
paddywhacked777
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Lol yeah.... Old vice has doubled as an anvil a bit too often i suppose.
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