Original Powell & Son Double

in 13 gauge

circa 1880

 

 

 

William Power, Sr. opened shop in Birmingham, England with partner Joseph Simmons in 1802. This is one of the lower quality guns that William Powell, Jr. produced for export during the last quarter of the 1800s. It is a plain working gun sold by hardware stores to farmers and homeowners for hunting and crop protection.

The 30" long barrels are 13 gauge now. (12 gauge wads will fit fine) I have honed the bores lightly to give them a smooth finish. There are still some dark spots of light pitting but nothing deep. I also installed new nipples. The ribs are sound with no areas coming unsoldered or rusted through. The barrel tubes are good with no dents, dings or rust spots. The breech/tang lockup is tight. The breech plugs are hardened which is not surprising as Powell Sr. was an influence in getting the Birmingham Proof House established in 1813. Barrel proofing was put into law by 1637 in London but Birmingham didn't become a major manufacturing center until the late 18th century and barrel makers had to go to London to have barrels proofed so another proofing house was needed. The top rib is marked "STUB TWIST" which is a term used in damascus barrels that were made from small pieces of iron and steel, welded into bars, layered and welded together into " square rods that are twisted then welded together into 1" wide bars. Those are then spirally wrapped around a mandrel and edge welded to make the rough tubes. Good thing labor was cheap back then. Sorry I got a little windy with the description but some people ask.

The wood shows a few minor handling dents natural to it's age. The checkering is in great condition. The wood is very sound with only one minor sliver lost at the top of the forend on the right side. A light coat of finish or a good paste wax would bring out the nice walnut stock better. The nosecap is a new replacement. The locks work fine. I repaired the nose of the left sear as it was worn. The left mainspring is an old forged replacement and works well. The ramrod is original with new tips installed.  

Light and well balanced. Would make a good shooter. I didn't spend a lot of time restoring this gun, just the harder items. The new owner can do the pretty stuff.

For more info on the 6 generations of Powell family gunmakers click here.

Weight is 6 lbs. 14 oz.  Pull is 14".

 

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