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Is my gun safe to shoot?

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Is my gun safe to shoot?

Postby ding2134 » Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:13 am

Hey everybody. I know this shotgun isnt the same gun i am going to reference, but the only single shot shotgun i could find on the site. I have an iver johnson 12 ga single shot breakaway champion shotgun that was given to me by my great grandfather. The shotgun from what i have found is 100+ years old. I have never shot a shotgun, period. This gun has just sat for years in my posession just as a conversation piece, but i am just itching to shoot it now. I bought some standard winchester bird shot to do so thinking I should get the ammo with the least "power or kick" so to speak. My issue is the actual safety of the gun. It feels solid as a new gun, very smooth action, hammer, trigger pull, no rust, shells load and eject well, but i am apprehensive to shoot it just because of the age. Is there anything in particular i should look for or do in order to decide if i can shoot this gun? I have not cleaned the gun in any way and am not even sure how you would or if you should. Thank you for your time and i hope someone can help me make the decision to shoot this gun or do what needs to be done to shoot it. My great grandfather passed away and it would be awesome to have my first shotgun shot to be from this piece of history he passed down to me.
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Postby Will_Carry » Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:51 pm

What you need is a test dummy, or a dummy to test it. Don't you have any young nephews that are annoying? You could tie it to a tree stump with duct tape and tie a string on the trigger.



It will probably shoot OK. I would inspect the barrel for any hair line cracks and make sure the lock up is good. Clean it first. If there is any concern about it, take it to a gun smith. They could tell you right away if it is shootable, they might not even charge you anything.
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Postby judgeparker » Sun Nov 20, 2011 12:58 am

Like Will said I would take it to a gunsmith and have them check it out. If it is a Damascus twist barrel it could blow up on you and take your face with it. In my younger days I have sandbagged rifles with the butt stock against a large tree and done the string on the trigger thing. I don't recommend that any more. At the least you might completely ruin your Great Grandpas shotgun. I would clean it and treasure it and keep it safe. I do not have any firearms that were passed down to me from my ancestors. Wish I did though. Your a lucky guy.
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Postby Gloc9mm » Sun Nov 20, 2011 1:41 pm

That Iver/Johnson 12G is a nice Shotgun, but I do love all old weapons! My Nephew has one. I'd just clean it and put it away myself. Anything over 100 yrs old deserves a good rest anyway! (I'm gettin up there myself! lol)

*Good Luck with it!
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Postby ding2134 » Sun Nov 20, 2011 10:37 pm

Thank you guys for the input. I know what im gonna do with it now. Get it incpected, shoot it a few times just to see what its like, then clean it and put it on the wall as you guys recommemd. Always knowing if i need it, shes there and ready :)
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