View Full Version : S x S recommendation

August 7, 2001, 12:34 AM
Hello all,
I am looking for an used field grade SxS in $400-$500 range. I will be attending a gunshow in a few weeks. So far at the gunshow I've seen some
L.C. Smith(I think) for about $450-$500. Can someone shed some light on what to look for in a hunting SxS. I am looking for a collectible, just an working gun in preferably in 20ga.
Thank you for your advices in advance.

Dave McC
August 7, 2001, 06:18 AM
That's a big can of worms you just opened up,Brian.

In no other specialized field of gunnery is the potential for getting a clunker greater.

And, since many doubles have been used extensively, you've got a good chance of getting one with nice, shiny, unpitted bores that got that way because some %^&*( brakehoned them smooth and shiny.IOW, they removed an unknown amount of bbl metal.

A good double is a joy and a fine tool. The trouble is, many doubles are not good, either by slipshod manufacturing or by use/abuse.

And sometimes the name guns get prostituted. An AH Fox shotgun is one of the best ever made. A Fox made by Savage(Who bought the rights to the name when Fox went belly up pre WWII) is not. LC Smiths made by the original company are better guns than those made by Marlin, IIRC.

Foreign shotguns are a real mess to newbies. It's hard to tell the difference between a fine London gun and a Belgian knockoff of same.

T'were I thee, I'd look for a using gun from Parker(Trojan), Fox(Sterlingworth),Ithaca(New Ithaca Double or NID), LC Smith,etc. I'd avoid foreign guns and domestics other than what I listed. Old Ithacas,for example, do not handle modern ammo well, they were designed for BP loads in the 6-8K PSI range.

There's other working class doubles like Hunter Arms and Fulton Arms that are servicable, but it gets really complicated as to which are safe and which are not.

There's old threads here on buying used doubles, I recommend a bit of research. HTH....

August 7, 2001, 12:58 PM
I would think a Fabarms SXS would be a good double. Someone correct me if I am wrong. However I have never seen one but I bet they are more than $500........

August 7, 2001, 02:58 PM
bryoon, If I was looking just for a field gun I would look real hard for an SKB 100 or 200 . You should be able to pick up a twenty bore for about what you want to spend. Also look for a Meruiko ,(I don't think I spelled it right )

If I wanted a bit of american history I'd look for a good later model of either LC Smith or Ithica NID or a Nitro Special, a fulton wouldn't be bad either but you must becareful when buying older guns .Like Dave said there are some real dogs out there. Do some research before you buy and like I said earlier get a late model so you won't have to worry about short chambers.

August 7, 2001, 07:33 PM
A good used browning BSS is worth the money as is a skb.

August 7, 2001, 10:17 PM
Dave McC offered good advice about the pitfalls of buying a double gun. There isn't much in your price range and even less so now that double guns have acquired a certain cachet among the snobbish.

Guns that I would suggest are the AyA Matador, Winchester 24 or the Stevens 311. Nothing fancy about any of them but they are good solid workmanlike pieces that will get the job done.

Failing that I would steer clear of doubles because once you get bitten by the sxs bug it's a hard addiction to shake.

August 8, 2001, 05:30 PM
Look for a good Stevens 311, but before you buy it, fire a snap cap in each barrel and make sure the firing pin is still making contact. Short of actually firing the gun (and I believe they frown on this at most shows) that seems to be the best way to check. It's saved me from two guns that would have had to go straight to the gunsmith.