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I was given an old Double Barrel shotgun by my grandfather. It says Parkhurst on it, and also machine made. I thought it was a 12 gauge, but 12 gauge shells were too large. And, 16 gauge shells are too small. I am quite confused, and would like to know more about this gun, such as gauge, value, origin, etc.
 

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I can't tell you about the gauge but the gun is a "Trade Brand Name" shotgun made in either
England or Belgium. Look on the bottom of the barrels under the forearm from proof marks, If there is crossed halberds (spear/battle axe) with a crown over that and letters in the intersections or crossed secpters, then the gun is English made and was made by J. P. Clabrough & Bros. Iff there are the letters "ELG" in an oval with possibly a crown over that then the gun was made in Belgium. By 1906, the gun was made in Belgium only.
 

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As already stated, take the barrels off and look at the proof marks. That will tell you where it was made. For Belgian proof marks, look here:
http://www.damascus-barrels.com/bp.html

These guns were made in England by JP Clabrough and later in Belgium by Simonis, Janssen & Dumoulin. The English made guns usually have William Parkhurst on them, while the Belgian guns often have Wm Parkhurst. I suspect this one is Belgian, because of the "machine made". Simonis, Janssen & Dumoulin had registered Union Machine Co of New York as one of their trademarks. I have seen "machine made" on other low end Belgian exports. The interesting question is who was making the guns for Clabrough, as almost all their guns were from Scott.

14 gauge was a carry over from the muzzle loader days. Many times a muzzle loader was supplied with a mold and patch cutter, so exact gauge was not that important. It went through a few incarnations as a pinfire and then as a centerfire.
This is the bore size, not the choke and not the chamber.
12 gauge .729
13 gauge .710
14 gauge .693
16 gauge .663
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gauge_(bore_diameter)

I am not sure if any one makes 14 gauge shells any more. It would be possible to contact Gauge-Mate have them make a 20ga insert. Short of that it is not a shooter.
 

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Winchester experimented with the 14ga and made some aluminum cased 14ga ammo for their Model 59 14ga guns. Also, there was at least 4 Model 21 SxS Winchesters made but they were kept under wraps.
 

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They are Belgium guns with proof marks to match. Most of them have "laminated steel" barrels, so don't use MODERN AMMO in 'em.

Also, they are short-chambered (2 9/16" in 12 gauge).

I have one. They were the "cheapies" usually sold by hardware stores, etc. I have used mine with black powder handloads, and with the cylinder-bore barrels, it was OK for skeet. However, that was a "leap of faith"

They are good "wall hangers", or if worn hard, they make good tomato stakes.

BobK
 

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The 1897 Sears & Roebuck catalog lists all brass 14 gauge unloaded cases. They were made by U.M.C. Company, a predecessor to Remington. They were 2 3/8 inch and used a #2 primer. These cost $1.17 for 25.

They also offered paper pin fire 14 ga shells at $.65 for 100. I believe that these were 2 1/2 inch shells.
 
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