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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I didnt want the other thread I started to get sidetracked, so I started another. I realized yesterday when I was looking at a new Yildiz, that I had no clue what I was looking for. Yeah the metal and wood fit together nicely, and the bore was clean, but other than that I didnt know what to look for on a new or used gun. More than likely I will be buying a used one, around here we dont have many gun stores, but we do have alot of pawn shops. So I really need to know what to look for to keep from getting a lemon. I know what to look for on pumps, rifles and handguns, but this O/U thing is a whole new ballgame. As I mentioned when I broke open the Yildiz, it was hard in my opinion to break open, right then I realized I didnt know enough. Are they supposed to be hard, easy etc. I was kicking tires so to speak, and had no clue what to look for in a O/U to keep from getting a bad gun, especially a bad used gun. Ive searched here and cant find anything under "used". So I would really appreciate your help, others may be in the same boat with me. Thanks again.
 

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Generally when they are difficult to open, they tend to be on the newer side. Check the condition of the wood and bluing to see if the rest of the gun appears to be new. If not, it may be a problem. If it has worn bluing and numerous dings in the wood that would indicate it's been used so it should have loosened up by then.

I like to check the chokes. If they are fixed, check for dings. If it has choke tubes make sure they screw in and out without difficulty. Make sure they have the same thickness around the entire choke. Make sure there are no bulges in the choke area.

Test the triggers with snap caps. Check the forend to make sure it's snug. Check the rib for looseness or dings. If it has a barrel selector, check to make sure it's working while you are checking the triggers. Gives the bores a check. Make sure they are not pitted. Check the ejectors to make sure they work properly. With the gun closed make sure there is no play. Check the wear points for any gouges or unusual wear. Check the stock very closely for any signs of splitting or possible repair jobs. Check the lever. Generally they will be to the right of center as most are meant to wear over time. Check the safety. I would try to get a 3 day inspection period where you can take it to the range and check the point of impact and any other obvious issues. That's about it. Some others may come up with some other things.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Chris thanks so much... you mentioned wear points, can you tell me exactly where the wear points would be located. Im guessing one is, and excuse my poor terms, the location of the pin that the gun breaks open on. Also if you have the action closed and there is play, side to side, kinda like on an ar15 with a loose fit between upper and lower, what is that telling me on a used gun, that its been shot a whole heck of alot or what. Also Ive read today about galling, where do I look for that at, I know there will be some wear on places, but where generally does the galling take place. Thanks again.
 

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Each gun will have different wear points based on their design. A Citori for example has a bottom hing pin that would show some wear. Look for galling anywhere in the action. A poor fitting gun will have some galling in those areas. Yes, if there is any loose fitting on an Over/Under I would avoid it. A pump or and auto will have some looseness in areas, but an over/under should not.
 

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Be aware also that some shotguns will break open with very little resistance when new and unfired, such as the Ruger o/u's. Brownings, on the other hand, open like a jammed vault until you get them "shot in" a bit. Folks will offer pros and cons to both rationales of engineering.

I would definitely opt to purchase a used o/u with a proven track record of quality, in other words, a reputable manufacturer. You can find used Browning Citoris for 700 or so in great shape if you shop around. Berettas are also a good option. I really feel that if you can, you will be much more satisfied in buying one of the "favored few" rather than some off brand trying to copy.

Look for bright bores, levers to right of center and overall good physical appearance. A gun looking like it's been through a war is most likely to have been abused.

I drove over four hours to get to a reputable dealer who carries a great inventory of new and used o/u's when I purchased my Browning. I got a great deal, expert advice on fitting and function, and had a good selection to choose from in both price and brand. I personally would drive hours for a good deal than minutes to compromise my hard earned dollars. A good o/u is just that type of investment, or should be.

If you are just looking for shooting iron, then I would advise purchasing a new IZH online through Gunbroker and use the services of the many FFL licensees who can get your purchase FFL transferred to you and shipped to you legally.

The best of luck with your purchase.
 

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Hi SouthernFried - I did see your question as to how to evaluate a used OU but I haven't had a chance to respond. The responses above to this thread are pretty comprehensive.

- Look for tight lock up, when closed and locked there should be no wiggle in barrel/receiver
- No bulges in barrel and certainly not in receiver
- Wearing of blue is not necessarily a bad thing...bluing wears and can be re-blued but condition should be accounted for in price.
- No pitting or rust anywhere...bluing may wear but a well tended gun should not have rust. Bores should be bright and shiny
- Chris mentioned galling...this would be badly rubbed/fine scratched surfaces where the block on the barrel meets with the receiver. Galling is a sign that the owner did not use adequate lubrication when assemblying the gun and would indicate the previous owner's level of care.
- As mentioned, no cracks in the stock...depending on the amount of money you want to spend you may have "honest wear" such as small dings or scratches in the stock. This may be acceptable insofar as it won't effect function but should effect price.
- Triggers should be crisp with no slop in them.
- Ejectors should be timed...that is, they should pop out together not sequentially.
- Wear points would be the hinge pin area and, for a Beretta 68x series there is a "shoulder" on the barrel that lines up with and extension of same on the receiver...if this is concave it shows wear but again, this may not be bad if reflected in the price and if this is the level of use that you are willing to accept. On, some competition grade Berettas, these are replaceable....they screw on although I have never known anybody to wear them out so much that they have been replaced.
- Check the sequencing of the triggers. If they are inertial (most likely unless the gun comes with a tube set), then trigger the first barrel and carefully whack the butt pad against something (to emulate recoil) and pull the trigger again for the second barrel...make sure that this works with the barrel selector in either position.
- Check operation of the safety.
- If viewing a gun in person, ask the owner if he will pull off the stock...if so, look that everything in there looks clean and in good condition.
- Look to see any oil penetration into the wood as this is not desirable.
- Check the fit...does the gun fit? If not (no factory stocks seem to fit me) and if you are shooting clays, then you may choose to add adjustable comb and butt pad...but think about this when evaluating the price.

OU are pretty simple...really, you are just looking at its basic functions and the overall condition of the gun and stock. If your price range puts in the market for a well used gun, then honest wear should be expected and not distress you. If you are looking for a low mileage unit, then the gun should look pretty darn good.

Oh, and the advise to get a 3 day evaluation period with a money back promise is a good one.

There are others on this board much more qualified than I in gun mechanics and gunsmithing who can probably tell you more or correct me if I am wrong in any areas.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
WOW thanks so much guys, Baron that was quite the response. Yall dont know how much I appreicate the help yall have given me, at least now I think I have enough info to begin the long search, that and figure out what all I have to sell to get what I want :D .Thanks again to everyone, I hope this thread has not only helped me but others as well.
 
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