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#351790 - 01/06/14 10:23 AM Dating 2 1/2" chamber?
patrickwall Offline
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Registered: 08/11/11
Posts: 142
Loc: AZ
I have a 12 bore single shot gun with 2 1/2 chamber.
It's a KFC Model 100 (Kawaguchiya Firearms Company) that I picked up in Japan. It's a really nice looking well made gun with an extractor vice ejector. I'm trying to get some estimate on its age, but the only clue I have is that its chamber is only 2 1/2 inches. At what point did guns start moving to 2 3/4" ? Thanks for any help.
_________________________
Sincerely,
Patrick

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#351815 - 01/06/14 01:21 PM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
patrickwall Offline
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Registered: 08/11/11
Posts: 142
Loc: AZ
I found a post with a quote from Brownell's that stated shotguns went from 2.5" chambers to 2.75" in the 1920's and by 1930 most guns were 2.75".

Does anyone have different information?

Thanks.
_________________________
Sincerely,
Patrick

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#351826 - 01/06/14 02:20 PM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
skeettx Offline
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Registered: 06/03/08
Posts: 4196
Loc: Amarillo, Texas
Patrick
Would this posting be of any assistance?

http://oldmilitarymarkings.com/japanese_markings.html

Mike

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#351834 - 01/06/14 03:05 PM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
L. Brown Offline
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Registered: 01/01/02
Posts: 10181
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Patrick, the problem is that the gun is Japanese. In Europe, for example, the 2 1/2" chamber remained the standard far longer than it did here in the States.

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#351842 - 01/06/14 03:23 PM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
postoak Offline
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Registered: 07/03/02
Posts: 1600
Loc: The Lone Star State !
And from my observations the Japanese Shotgun makers copied the Brits.
_________________________
Mine's a tale that can't be told, my freedom I hold dear.



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#351956 - 01/06/14 10:38 PM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: skeettx]
patrickwall Offline
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Registered: 08/11/11
Posts: 142
Loc: AZ
Skeettx,

Thanks - but the military markings don't apply to the sporting guns.

Many Japanese guns have not proof marks - only serial numbers. Miroku is the best company that I've seen for marking the flats and action. Even SKB was poor in marking the guns. I'll post a few pictures if I can.
_________________________
Sincerely,
Patrick

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#351958 - 01/06/14 10:41 PM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
patrickwall Offline
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Registered: 08/11/11
Posts: 142
Loc: AZ
L. Brown and Postoak,

Thanks - I agree that Japan copied a lot of English guns and I suspect Japan held onto 2 1/2 " chambers longer than the U.S. but I don't really know.
_________________________
Sincerely,
Patrick

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#351962 - 01/06/14 10:58 PM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
patrickwall Offline
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Registered: 08/11/11
Posts: 142
Loc: AZ
Here are some pictures of the KFC Model 100, 12 bore.







_________________________
Sincerely,
Patrick

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#351978 - 01/07/14 06:28 AM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
trw999 Offline
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Registered: 02/11/10
Posts: 579
Loc: Essex/Herts Borders, UK
Patrick

I have just had a look at Teesdale-Buckell. He first published his book in 1900. In the section on patterns there are many diagrams with tables, detailing amongst other data the length of cartridge used. Whilst the majority are, unsurprisingly, 21/2" in length, there are examples using 23/4" and one of 3".

This would indicate both the availability of longer cartridges at that time, as well as guns chambered for them. I'm afraid all this does is make it even more tricky to date your gun. I appreciate that your question is more concerned with when 23/4" chambered guns became more generally available. Though I have little to back it up, my thought is that would be in the post WWII era.

Tim

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#351986 - 01/07/14 08:00 AM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
patrickwall Offline
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Registered: 08/11/11
Posts: 142
Loc: AZ
Tim,

The dates you have for 2 3/4 becoming available makes sense - and are close to what I posted about Brownell, but I'm hoping to see when 2 1/2" chambers were generally NOT used any more. Then I would would say this gun is at least that old. Any thoughts on that?
_________________________
Sincerely,
Patrick

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#352002 - 01/07/14 09:33 AM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
trw999 Offline
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Registered: 02/11/10
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Loc: Essex/Herts Borders, UK
Patrick

You may wish to ask the UK cartridge manufacturer Eley that question. They will have records of their sales. My guess is the cross over from 2 1/2" cartridge sales being most popular to 2 3/4" becoming most bought would give the best indication.

Tim

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#352104 - 01/07/14 06:02 PM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
patrickwall Offline
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Registered: 08/11/11
Posts: 142
Loc: AZ
Tim,

Thanks - good idea. Do you have contact info for them?

Thanks.
_________________________
Sincerely,
Patrick

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#352188 - 01/08/14 04:01 AM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
trw999 Offline
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Registered: 02/11/10
Posts: 579
Loc: Essex/Herts Borders, UK
Patrick

Web site: http://www.eleyhawkltd.com/

Contact E: sales@eleyhawkltd.com

Good luck.

Tim

Edit to add: I looked in Burrard, published 1930. He said "... Continental makers ... often chamber their guns for 2 3/4" cases instead of the ordinary 2 1/2" case ... in (Britain) the standard 2 1/2" 12 bore cartridge is almost universally used"


Edited by trw999 (01/08/14 04:05 AM)

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#352194 - 01/08/14 07:37 AM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
L. Brown Offline
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Registered: 01/01/02
Posts: 10181
Loc: Iowa
There were certainly a lot of Continental makers still turning out 2 1/2" guns prior to WWII. The difference to which Burrard was referring may be that some Continental makers (Sauer and Francotte are a couple that come to mind) were exporting quite a few guns to the United States prior to WWII--at least quite a few compared to the British shotgun industry--and when they did so, they catered to changes in the American market. As in from short shells to what became the 2 3/4" standard. But many guns that stayed in Europe continued to be chambered for 2 1/2" shells.

Patrick, the British continued to turn out 2 1/2" guns following WWII. Some of the Webley and Scott 700's, for example--a model that did not appear until 1947--were 2 1/2" guns. It's not even all that easy to state exactly when the change occurred in the States, because all manufacturers did not change at the same time, nor did individual manufacturers change all gauges at the same time. For example, LC Smith switched to 2 3/4" as the 12 and 20 gauge standard some years before they did the same in their 16ga guns--which remained short chambered until at least 1939 or 1940. About the only blanket statement that can be made re American guns is that it's not likely any short-chambered guns were produced after WWII, although that does not preclude the possible sale of the occasional leftover short-chambered gun from pre-war days.

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#352199 - 01/08/14 08:56 AM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
Condor Offline
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Registered: 04/12/11
Posts: 224
Loc: USA
Patrick , I do not think I can help with dating except to share some of my info. I have a Grant Side lever that was rebarrelled by Boss. The Boss ( from Ron L) ledger , from 1904 indicates that the customer of the Grant wanted 2 3 /4 chambers for American " case"...I also own a Purdey SBT gun made in 1929 which is also 2 3/4. In the Purdey History by Dallas, there is a brief discussion of the Trap guns being ordered from the US. This was generally though A & F out if NY. Only 59 SBT were made, and I do not know if they were all 2 3/4.




The only picture I have us the one from GI...




Here is a picture of the SBT gun, we ( Bob Beach)know it was ordered though A&F....to a NY order in 1929... Resold though A& F in 1930.



Edited by Condor (01/08/14 09:04 AM)

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#352221 - 01/08/14 10:45 AM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
patrickwall Offline
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Registered: 08/11/11
Posts: 142
Loc: AZ
L. Brown, Condor,

Thanks for the information - and pictures of your beautiful guns, Condor. I think I have my answer. Once I realized the chamber for my gun was only 2 1/2" inches, I thought it might be pre-war - maybe even in the 1920's, which was surprising to me but not inconceivable; however, I can tell now that 2 1/2" chambers continued to be made after the war. The US market was mostly 2 3/4", but England and Europe still made 2 1/2", and I suspect the British influence on gun making in Japan was still relevant, so 2 1/2" were proably continued there as well - at least until Browning and Winchester gained their foot holds.
So, I assume my gun is post-WWII - probably in the 1950's.

Thanks.
_________________________
Sincerely,
Patrick

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#352237 - 01/08/14 12:33 PM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
Researcher Offline
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Registered: 01/01/02
Posts: 5202
Loc: WA/AK
While the 2 5/8 inch 12-gauge shell was "standard" in the U.S. from the beginning, when Winchester introduced their Model 1897, it was made for 2 3/4 inch shells. Likewise the Remington Autoloading Shotgun (later Model 11), introduced in 1905 and the Remington Repeating Shotgun (later Model 10), introduced in 1908, were made for 2 3/4 inch 12-gauge shells. In the late 1890s to at least 1905, the U.S. amminition companies were offering smokeless powder loads as heavy as 3 1/4 drams of bulk smokeless powder pushing 1 1/4 ounce of shot in 12-gauge 2 5/8 inch paper shells. By 1910, they had backed off, and the heaviest 2 5/8 inch loads offered were 1 1/8 ounce of shot. From then on one had to go to the 2 3/4 inch or longer shells for 1 1/4 ounce loads.

For some time I was under the impression that the extra length paper shotshells came in with the increasing use of smokeless powders in the 1890s, but recently I found this in the 1880 UMC catalogue --



It is a bit hard to read, but 12-gauge 2 5/8 inch paper shells are $10.50 per thousand, and 12-gauge paper shells up to 3 1/4 inch are $12.00 per thousand.


Edited by Researcher (01/08/14 12:34 PM)

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#352305 - 01/08/14 05:11 PM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: patrickwall]
L. Brown Offline
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Registered: 01/01/02
Posts: 10181
Loc: Iowa
If I recall correctly, the Winchester Model 12 pump was initially introduced as a 2 1/2" 20ga.

Standardization of chamber length in this country took a long time to achieve. The Brits and Europeans, in contrast, were much more settled on 2 1/2"--although there were certainly exceptions, and not only for guns exported to the States.

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#352317 - 01/08/14 05:49 PM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: L. Brown]
Researcher Offline
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Registered: 01/01/02
Posts: 5202
Loc: WA/AK
Quote:
If I recall correctly, the Winchester Model 12 pump was initially introduced as a 2 1/2" 20ga.


But the 12-gauge Model 12 was introduced for 2 3/4 inch shells.

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#352404 - 01/09/14 08:58 AM Re: Dating 2 1/2" chamber? [Re: Researcher]
L. Brown Offline
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Registered: 01/01/02
Posts: 10181
Loc: Iowa
Originally Posted By: Researcher
Quote:
If I recall correctly, the Winchester Model 12 pump was initially introduced as a 2 1/2" 20ga.


But the 12-gauge Model 12 was introduced for 2 3/4 inch shells.


Right. All manufacturers did not convert to 2 3/4" as standard at the same time, and individual manufacturers did not convert all gauges to 2 3/4" at the same time. The above is a perfect example of the last half of that statement.

And that's what makes determining "when did 2 1/2" end?" a complicated question to answer.

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