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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good day all. My father is passing down to me a Zoli sxs 16 ga. shotgun. He said he bought it in 1963 as a 12 ga. but it kicked like a mule, wrong shells I assume, so he the took it back and had them change it into a 16 ga. It has very fine, detailed engravings. The barrel interior is very clean and bright, but the outside had some light surface rust, 3 or 4 places, which he had removed with some steel wool. The barrel should probably be re-blued? My friend is getting me into duck, turkey and grouse hunting so I'm wondering if this gun will do? My dad said he had fired a slug or to with it successfully on some deer hunts. Of course I'm strapped for cash so I'd prefer to use this gun rather than buy a new one for $400 or $500. I have searched extensively and I can find no reference to an Antonio Zoli 16 ga. anywhere. Is this a very rare shotgun? Any information or advice would be greatly appreciated. I have also posted this in the general topics as I would like to send the gun to a gunsmith for a once over but I also do not want to waste my money if it's not worth it.
Cheers, Don
 

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what model ?

Any other info?

zoli's are far from rare, but from what I have seen they are good field guns.

In 16 gauge, it would make a great upland gun. Grouse, pheasant etc.
 

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If memory serves me, the Zoli was one of a number relatively low cost "Spanish" doubles that was imported in the 60's. I doubt if it has any serious collector value.

There are a couple of negatives I can see for the types of hunting you are going to do. Your main problem is going to be shell selection in 16 gauge and the fact that the gun has fixed chokes. It should be a nice light fast handling gun for grouse. You should not shoot steel shot it it. That means you need to find some bismuth or tungsten matrix in 16 gauge. I have not looked so I don't know what is out there. I am sure the shells will be mail order and in the range of 2.00 bucks apiece when you do find them. that is okay, you don't shoot many hunting ducks and geese now days anyway. If the chokes are mod and full, you might want to consider trying to hunt up some spreader loads to use in the first barrel for grouse and other upland game.

Pattern the gun, get to know where it shoots. Feed it the right shells. Take shots that are in range. It will serve for all you uses for a while.

For the rust spots on the barrel, just keep it fairly clean. Wipe it down with a light coat of oil after hunting with it. It is a big deal to reblue those barrels and most attempts at "fixing up" spots just results in a lot bigger and worse looking spots.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for your reply. Yes it is definitely stamped Antonio Zoli. The barrel has 'English steel Sheffield' and 'Ariete' stamped on it. The barrel and the breech (?) have a 16 cal. stamp on it. It also has something like Carone Toronne(?) and Gardone(?) stamped on the breech. It also has the zoli emblem stamp. I'll take a photo of the markings and e-mail it to you if you wish. My dad purchased it in 1963 as he recalls and the barrel is stamped XV which means it's from 1959 I think. When he took it back because of the kick he's sure they just put a different barrel on it and used the original stock and breech. It will be interesting to find out more of the makings of this gun!
Thanks, Don
 

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Yes, XV does mean 1959.

The Blue Book lists: "Ariete M3 - 12 ga only, 26 or 28 in. barrels, matted rib, single non-selective trigger, ejectors, blue receiver with fine scroll engraving, cased. Disc." The values are listed as $285-550 depending on condition. The book does not list the years that it was imported.

The Blue Book is based on US data. I suspect there might have been a different importer in Canada at the time your father bought the gun, and they might have imported 16 gauge guns that were not available in the US. I don't know what "M3" in the model designation means, but yours may not be an M3.

There are probably serial numbers on the receiver, barrels, and forearm iron. If the barrels were switched, the numbers will probably not match.

BTW, both of the Zolis (Antonio and Angelo) are definitely Italian, not Spanish. Antonio's guns are generally of better quality than Angelo's. Antonio is still in business and produces some high-grade guns. http://www.zoli.it/ I have heard scuttlebutt from within the industry, that there will soon be an announcement of a new US importer and a new line of high-grade Antonio Zolis.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Good day all. I have taken a bunch of photos of my dads Zoli 16 ga. (about 20 and re-sized) But I do not know where or how to post them. They show all the markings and serial numbers. Curiously the ser. no. on the fore stock(?), barrel and breech match so maybe they gave my dad a new gun rather than just switch the barrels? The barrel is 27 5/8" long and the gun is 44" tip to butt, total length. I show all the markings so maybe someone out there can help or just enjoy.
Cheers, Don
 
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