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 Post subject: Merkel SxS shotguns
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 8:06 am 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:55 pm
Posts: 193
I am looking to start collecting SxS shotguns . I have 1 Stevens 311 12 ga. Saw the Merkel s and thought they were nice looking & well made. Was looking at the 147 E in 20 gauge to start then as time & $$$ allow try to collect all gauges, probably not all Merkel s but quality guns. Any thoughts? Appreciate any in site or suggestions. Have had my 311 at least 50 + years & it was used when i purchased it but would rather have quality than quantity. Thanks




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 Post subject: Re: Merkel SxS shotguns
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 8:26 am 
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Joined: Wed Dec 14, 2005 8:03 pm
Posts: 3823
Location: Mid-Missouri
Supermario wrote:
I am looking to start collecting SxS shotguns . I have 1 Stevens 311 12 ga. Saw the Merkel s and thought they were nice looking & well made. Was looking at the 147 E in 20 gauge to start then as time & $$$ allow try to collect all gauges, probably not all Merkel s but quality guns. Any thoughts? Appreciate any in site or suggestions. Have had my 311 at least 50 + years & it was used when i purchased it but would rather have quality than quantity. Thanks


My thoughts . . .

I really like side by side shotguns. I like owning them and I like shooting them (skeet, sporting clays, etc., . . . not hunting). I generally don't shoot them as well as I do a big, heavy target-type over/under but I do enjoy them.

One thing I really enjoy about side-by-sides is that there are so many good bargains out there. I'm a bottom-feeder and always on the look out for undervalued guns. There are a lot of good deals to be had on field grade, 12 gauge double shotguns with fixed chokes. Once you start talking about sub-gauges, upgraded wood/engraving and guns new enough to have threaded muzzles, then all bets are off. But if you're looking at a 60-year-old hunting double in 12 gauge, there an almost unlimited supply of great $600 (or less) guns to be had. Bump that up to about $1K and you have even more choices.

As for Merkel, I've never owned one, but I have had a few Sauers and one other very nice, but unmarked, German double gun. I like the German guns. They seem to fit me well and there are some very nice guns out there for not a tremendous amount of money.

If you want to try a Merkel-type gun and see if you like it, I suggest looking for a post-War model made in East Germany. The communist guns are a bargain. You can often find nice ones for $800 or less and they're plenty good. My understanding is that Sauers, Simpsons and Merkels were all made by the same East German factory and you can find Merkel-style guns (with the hump on the side of the receiver) wearing all three brands.

If you're only considering a "real" Merkel and won't be happy unless you pay $2,500, I apologize for wasting your time with these ramblings. I'm just suggesting that one of these more affordable alternatives might allow you to stick your toe into the Merkel pool without having to jump into the deep water.

Also, you said 20 gauge. Bargains are almost impossible to find in 20 gauge, so forget everything I've written if you must have a 20. You said you'd like to collect 'em all, though. Maybe you'd be willing to consider starting your collection with an more economically obtainable selection.


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 Post subject: Re: Merkel SxS shotguns
PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2019 6:21 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Mon Sep 06, 2004 6:08 pm
Posts: 1761
Location: Minnesota
I have a Merkel 147 E, in 16 ga. Don’t shoot it a lot, but when I do, I like it. It’s a single trigger, pistol grip, 28” fixed choke gun.
Not looking to sell it.


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 Post subject: Re: Merkel SxS shotguns
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2019 6:49 am 
Limited Edition

Joined: Fri Nov 24, 2006 3:33 pm
Posts: 410
Location: Lincoln, Nebraska
I have a 1620, 16b built on a 20b frame. All of the Merkel's I have seen and handled are heirloom quality that could be handed down for generations. I have never seen one off-face and I don't think you could wear one out hunting, maybe at the range but it would take thousands and thousands of shells to do so. They are built like tanks but still handle very well.

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 Post subject: Re: Merkel SxS shotguns
PostPosted: Wed Nov 06, 2019 1:36 pm 
Tournament Grade
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Joined: Tue Aug 21, 2018 12:40 pm
Posts: 120
Also look at Simson. It is basically the same as a Merkel just with lesser quality wood and not as nicely done as a Merkel. They were manufactured in the same place in Suhl next to each other. I have a Simson 35/70 which is the same as a Merkel Modell 8. If you want a Merkel factory brochure in PDF from the 80s let me know.

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 Post subject: Re: Merkel SxS shotguns
PostPosted: Sun Jan 05, 2020 10:25 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 04, 2006 9:24 am
Posts: 1154
Location: colorado
Great quality guns, the 1620s are fabulous, found a simson sideplate in 16ga and it is still tight after 60 years. Go for the 47 and 8 models in 20ga, have them checked out cleaned and lubed and they will be enjoyed by you and your heirs.


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 Post subject: Re: Merkel SxS shotguns
PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2020 10:21 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2018 3:03 pm
Posts: 82
Here ya go
https://www.save-the-fine-guns.com/c/gu ... asc&page=2

You will have more luck finding 12 and 16 gauge than 20. Merkel, Simson, JP Sauer.
Recent EEC regulations have made it incredibly expensive to own firearms in Germany so many normal folks are selling them off or scrapping them to avoid the tax bite. TGGI in Mobile AL is buying these guns in Germany and importing them to the US. The pandemic has slowed the progress of getting them out of Germany (90 plus days) but their prices are very reasonable and they will allow you 30 days to your satisfaction on receipt.




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