2018

UNPRECEDENTED FIND! EXCEPTIONALLY RARE, FIRST

Currency:USD Category:Firearms & Military Start Price:12,500.00 USD Estimated At:25,000.00 - 40,000.00 USD
UNPRECEDENTED FIND! EXCEPTIONALLY RARE, FIRST
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VARIATION LC SMITH A2 10 GA. IN HIGH ORIGINAL, “AS FOUND” CONDITION. Cal. 10 Ga., 2 7/8". S# 35555. Bbl. 32". Often described as the most beautiful shotgun ever made in America, the A2 was the highest grade offered by LC Smith in Syracuse or Hunter Arms in Fulton, New York, before the introduction of the A3. It was made in four variations, differing mostly in engraving style and degree of decoration. The first variation being the highest grade offered at the time had the most detail and finish. The grade was offered until 1913. The first variation guns were offered either w/ ejectors or not and were produced until 1895. Of the approximately 213 A2s produced, only six were made in 10 Ga., making this particular example exceptionally scarce. The 32" bbls. are of the highest quality three stripe damascus & are fitted w/ a slightly concave, matted rib. Tops of bbls. are engraved: “THE L. C. SMITH. GUN BUILT BY”, “the HUNTER ARMS CO. FULTON, N.Y.”. There are bands of geometric engraving around breeches & muzzles. Bbl. flats stamped w/ serial number & bottoms of bbls. stamped w/ “XXX”, a small “PAT” & w/ Birmingham provisional proofs. Large sized, case hardened sidelock action is stamped w/ 1883 & 1886 patent dates along w/ serial number on water table. Firing pins are of early bushed type. Action also features non automatic safety (safe inlaid in gold) ad gold plated double triggers. Action is beautifully filed w/ fluted beads around fences & deep concave channels around ends of lock mortices. Lockplate tails are relieved & the step is filed to match beads around fences. Engraving is of the highest order w/ over 80% coverage, exceptionally well cut & shaded, varying sized scroll w/ in geometric borders on action. Lockplates have sprays of matching scroll at front which surround “L. C. SMITH”. Matching scroll is on rebated tails. All this fine scroll highlights superb semi relief oval scenes of bird dogs in field environments. A pair of pointers, one pointing & the other honoring point are in open woodlands on left lockplate. Right lockplate has pair of alert setters in marshlands. The detail is very fine & background is nicely stippled. Above & to the fore of each of these scenes is a small, circular rendition of a game bird w/ snipe on left & woodcock on right. Trigger guard has scroll on bow surrounding relief engraved “H” in circle. Serial number is on tang. Capped long pistol grip buttstock is of a superb piece of nicely mottled & well figured European (probably Circassian) walnut measuring 14 1/4" over early style checkered & embossed “double dog” buttplate. Flutes on the lockplates extend into the surrounding stock & area around lockplates have early type raised panels in “swallowtail” pattern. Closely spaced checkering is of fleur de lis style w/ fleur de lis extensions into butt below narrow fluted comb. Fancy grip cap of hard rubber is decorated w/ notches. There is a recess in toeline for gold oval (missing). Matching splinter forend has shaped inlet ebony tip & hard rubber dogs head central medallion. Checkering is also of fleur de lis style. This early gun only uses the simple J spring release. Forend iron is stamped w/ 1880 patent date & serial number & is line border engraved. MEASUREMENTS: Bore Dia. Left .795. Right .795. Restrictions Left .044 (Full). Right .050 (Full). Min. Wall Thickness Left .028. Right .030. DAH: 3 1/2". DAC: 1 15/16". LOP: 14 1/4". Cast approximately 1/4" on. WEIGHT: 9 lbs. 10 oz. CONDITION: fine original as found, bbls. retaining approximately 70% of the fine black & white damascus finish which is quite dramatic when viewed from the top or bottom. Action retains approximately 50% of its original muted case hardened color, percentage difficult to assess due to considerable engraving at front portion. Lockplates also retain most of their color. Case hardening trigger guard has considerable color inside bow, but is essentially all silver where visible. Checkered finger blades of triggers retain over 80% of their gold plate. Buttstock retains over 70% of its original French polish finish w/ a large number of marks & scratches. Stock finish is worn through on sharp edges around grip. Checkering somewhat worn, especially on right side from normal handling. Forend wood shows considerable wear w/ some original finish remaining toward tip, ebony tip has chip out of schnabel. Dog’s head medallion shows considerable wear as does checkering. There is a 1" scuff in checkering on right front portion of forend & left front has at repaired 3" crack. Bores are very fine, bright and shiny but w/ some scattered light pitting/frosting at breech ends of both bbls. There are one or two very minor dents toward muzzle of right bbl. Action is tight, bbls. on face. Top lever is considerably left of center. It appears this gun was disassembled at one time w/ some screws (trigger guard, tang) misplaced & others out of time. They are subsequently unturned & caked w/ dirt. Factory record is indicative that this gun was finished in Feb 1892. Grade was designated "XXX". A wonderful example of this “Holy Grail” for the L.C. Smith collector! (01-18895/MGM). ANTIQUE. $25,000-40,000.