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 Post subject: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 9:14 am 
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What makes a shotgun a "game gun"? Does it have to be SxS? Splinter forend? Straight grip? Light? I see the term everywhere and have a good idea of what it means, but don't know the specifics.




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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 9:48 am 
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I would say a game gun is a gun specifically designed to be carried in the field to shoot at game rather than designed for the clay games. Most of the time they are lighter, which makes them alot easier to carry them in the field all day, but increases recoil, which really doesn't matter because you don't shoot 100 shells through them in an hour like you do a clays gun.

I think the term "game gun" is used loosly to describe a gun that is more suited for carrying afield for hours at a time than a heavier trap or skeet gun that you shoot with, and then set in a rack in between your turn.

Any gun can do any job, but some can do clays better, others are more suited for the field, as they were designed. I would say that the term "game gun" doesn't refer to a type of action, be it pump, o/u, sxs, or auto, or even single.

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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 9:50 am 
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"Game gun" is a new one on me..... I've heard the term "field gun" since Moses was a little kid, but this is the first time I've heard "game gun". Have I been living under a rock?


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 Post subject: Re: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 9:53 am 
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wwb wrote:
"Game gun" is a new one on me..... I've heard the term "field gun" since Moses was a little kid, but this is the first time I've heard "game gun". Have I been living under a rock?


I think it's an English thing. Purdy, Holland & Holland, and some Continental makers market game guns.


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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 10:48 am 
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A "game gun" is (usually) less than 7 lbs and meant to shoot lighter loads than a "pigeon gun" or a "fowler" (meaning a waterfowler)....it is meant to be carried a lot and shot a little.


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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 10:50 am 
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Quote:
I think it's an English thing. Purdy, Holland & Holland, and some Continental makers market game guns.


That is correct. It's an English thing. A game gun will typically be a SxS with a straight grip, splinter fore-end, double triggers and be of very light weight. They are designed exclusively for upland wing shooting.
In North America we use the term "field gun" in a broader sense, usually refering to any gun made for hunting whether it's for waterfowl, upland birds, rabbits etc..

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 Post subject: Re: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 11:14 am 
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Eric Cioe wrote:
.....I think it's an English thing. Purdy, Holland & Holland, and some Continental makers market game guns.


Gee, that's funny - the last half-dozen guns I ordered from Purdey, I told 'em I wanted a "field gun" and they never corrected my English......

Yeah, right.....


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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 11:33 am 
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Since this seems to have deteriorated, just thought a little education was in order.

A game gun is an English thing, precisely. It is designed to be shot in the classic "Churchill" style (if I remember right) at driven birds in a shoot at an estate. He was the one that invented the term.

And yes, they are usually expensive, lightweight, 2 triggers, straight stocked SXS guns designed (by his thoughts around the turn of the century) for that type of shooting.

BobK

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 Post subject: Re: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 12:50 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 4:55 pm
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Location: University of Chicago & Muskegon, MI
wwb wrote:
Eric Cioe wrote:
.....I think it's an English thing. Purdy, Holland & Holland, and some Continental makers market game guns.


Gee, that's funny - the last half-dozen guns I ordered from Purdey, I told 'em I wanted a "field gun" and they never corrected my English......

Yeah, right.....


I meant the term was more known among English people (i.e. British) rather than Americans. Given that these firms are international in their sales, I wouldn't be at all surprised if they were used to many different regional definitions. I was asking what an English game gun was. I now understand it to be a subset of the American field gun, with characteristics as described above. I'm not sure what prompted the hostility. :oops:


Last edited by Eric Cioe on Thu Apr 26, 2007 3:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 1:26 pm 
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Easy, Eric...

I didn't see any hostility, just a snicker elicited from the thought that any of us could wander into Purdey or H&H and ask to see the field guns, only to be told in the snootiest way imaginable that they only make "GAME" guns. In fact, I still think it's pretty funny.


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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 1:34 pm 
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Brit "game gun".....2 1/2 in chamber; double underbolt lock up;straight grip; shot tight and open at driven birds and open and tight at walk-up("rough") birds; under 7 lbs; 2 triggers; choked to customer specs

"pigeon gun"....2 3/4 in chamber; over 7 lbs; a 3d fastener; choked 1/2 and Full; maybe one trigger( set to shoot left/right)

(water)"fowler": 3 in chambers(or 2 3/4) choked Full/Full w/ long barrels...usually a box lock


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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 3:20 pm 
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A game gun is a ''tool'' used to put meat on one's table.


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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 4:33 pm 
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I certainly hope you guys realize I was "tongue-in-cheek" with the remark about my last half-dozen Purdeys.....

I can't come close to rationalizing the purchase of one of them - sure wish I was wealthy enough to have one (or more) built for me, but unless I win the lottery, it ain't gonna happen.


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 Post subject: Re: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 4:48 pm 
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Location: University of Chicago & Muskegon, MI
wwb wrote:
I certainly hope you guys realize I was "tongue-in-cheek" with the remark about my last half-dozen Purdeys.....

I can't come close to rationalizing the purchase of one of them - sure wish I was wealthy enough to have one (or more) built for me, but unless I win the lottery, it ain't gonna happen.


Someone has to win it, right? What one man can do, another can do.


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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 4:58 pm 
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A "game gun" in my mind is a little different than a "field gun".

Why? A "field gun" is plain, reliable, and durable. A 12 gauge Model 12 Winchester comes to mind as the prime example. So is a Beretta 391 with a 28 inch barrel. But, I don't consider either of those a "game gun".


A "game gun" originally referred, I think, to a lightweight British side by side, that shot no more than an ounce and an eighth, or less, of shot, that was light, certainly less than seven pounds, and balanced and handled well. It still does. But, I call any well balanced, light, pointable shotgun, double or repeater, a "game gun" if it somehow has that hard to define deadliness for upland game that only a "game gun" has. My prime example of an American "game gun", above all others, is an Ithaca Model 37 with 28 inch barrels or 26 inch barrels, in any gauge, especially a 16.

In a way, my definition of a "game gun" is kind of like Judge Stewart Potter trying to define something else, a long time ago. "I know it when I see it". Or actually, I know it when I shoot it. A "game gun" has to be light, has to point like a magic wand, and I believe a great "game gun" can't be a great target gun, because the "game gun" will be so responsive in the hands you will have a difficult time making a smooth, deliberate, measured shot with it. Most "game guns" balance about 4 1/4 inches in front of the front trigger, and they have half their weight in the middle third of the gun, with a fourth of the weight in the front third and a fourth of their weight in the back third of the gun. I didn't make that up, although I wish I had. That's the prescription for a "dynamically balanced" "game gun", of any kind of action or country of manufacture.


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 Post subject: Re: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 5:06 pm 
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[quote="DrMike"]Easy, Eric...

"only to be told in the snootiest way imaginable that they only make "GAME" guns."
A few years ago, I had occasion to stop by the Holland showroom in NYC. I needed some advice. It was pretty obvious that I was not going to buy one of their firerarms. They could not have been more accomodating to my needs. Very polite. Very Helpful.
I apologize in advance if that "snooty" remark was also tongue-in-cheek.
Pete

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 Post subject: Re: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 6:26 pm 
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SuperXOne wrote:
A "game gun" in my mind is a little different than a "field gun".


Right on.

A British "game gun" is made for driven game. It can be sxs or o/u.

A "field gun" is made for "rough shooting" or hunting with walking envolved, and weight is a big issue.

Actually, I think a sporting gun is great for driven game.


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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2007 12:33 pm 
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Guys, its pretty straight forward. A game gun is a field gun rather than a sporter ie clay gun. A game gun can be of any configueration, sxs, o/u, or s/a etc. It is generally lighter than a sporter so can be carried more comfortably all day over various terrain. Other than that there really isnt much difference. Game/field o/u often have a solid rib rather than vented as vented ribs are easily dented.

The traditional idea of a game gun to the purist would be the 6 1/2lb London best side by side with 2" or 2 1/2" chambers shooting 1oz of UK#6, but for most people that is just fantasy.

Leeboy


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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2007 12:44 pm 
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I've read, probably in MacIntosh, that the ideal shotgun weighs "about" (or at least?) 96 times the weight of it's shot charge. Six and one-half pounds would be right there (104 oz.). I assume that he means "game gun".
Pete

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 Post subject: re: What constitutes a "game gun"?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2007 3:35 pm 
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The first mention I read of 96 times the shot load fired being the ideal weight of a gun for sustained shooting was W.W. Greener. That works out to six pounds for a one ounce load.
Seven and a half pounds for the ounce and a quarter loads of British #6 Greener backed by a 3 dram eqv. charge that he loved to pattern and count how many shot he could get in a 30 inch circle at forty yards. Greener was a full choke sort of guy, actually. :lol:

Greener also said the barrels should be forty times longer than the diameter of the bore, for good balance. That's 29.16 inches for a .729 12 gauge. Greener said that even so, 30 inch barrels "seldom fail to give satisfation". :lol:




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