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Serial Number 18581
Westley Richards & Co. 12g Best Quality Lightweight Hand Detachable Lock shotgun finished in August of 1937 for W.H.S. Chance Esquire.
Gun has all the Westley Richards hallmark features including our patent Hand Detachable Lock or Droplock action with a scroll back, snap lever work and Model “C” Doll’s head extension, hinged cover plate, patent “One Trigger”, automatic “beetle back” safety, and Westleys' patent ejectors.
Action is engraved with a small scroll in the traditional house pattern with the maker’s name in flowing banners on each side of the action and a pointing dog on the trigger bow. This is a single gun (No.1) of a pair and is so numbered in gold on the top rib, top lever, and forend iron. “SAFE” is also inlaid in gold and the stock’s gold oval is blank.
The original WR Special Steel, dovetail lump, 28” barrels have a smooth, raised and concave game rib, with original 2 ½" chambers. The barrels were re-proved in Birmingham in 2010. The barrels are choked .008" in the right and and .024" in the left.
Original straight hand stock is nicely figured with a very fine point pattern checkering with traditional Mullered borders. The LOP is 13 ½" over a serrated horn butt plate. The splinter forend has the traditional horn forend tip and Deeley latch.
Legitimate Lightweight guns (those ordered and entered in the ledgers as Lightweights) are quite rare. These gun’s had specially selected walnut blanks and the barrels were struck a tad thinner, all in efforts to save weight. As a result, the Lightweights were fast handling guns that weighed 6 to 8 oz less than a standard gun...all things being equal. This gun weighs only 6 lbs. 1 oz. and balances just at the knuckle of the action.
The barrels of this gun are tight on face and in very good shape still retaining safe wall thickness. A pad can also easily be added to make the LOP a bit longer. Action is mostly gray with traces of original colors left, the barrels and furniture have had a re-black and the wood has been re-oiled and the checkering picked up at, I imagine, the same time the barrels were re-proved. Gun is included in a later Maker's VC lightweight leather case w/ french fitted storage for the removed locks. Overall very nice condition and a perfect configuration for walk up pheasants.