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Total Likes: 10
Original Post (Thread Starter)
by Glacierjohn
I’m in a situation where the British-American debate is not hypothetical. Beyond all the other shotguns I’ve used over the years, I’ve been searching for twenty years for the right side by side. Over the years I’ve owned a modest Spanish double, a really nice Lefever DS grade that didn’t fit, an inherited Damascus Parker GH, and I currently own a Sterlingworth pin gun and LC Smith featherweight.

Of all these guns, I shoot the Sterlingworth best. It’s a 12 ga, 30” full and full I use for waterfowl. Without making this story longer than necessary, I looking at buying another gun from a double gun guy up here, six hours drive away. He mostly specializes in classic British doubles 2-1/2” chambers to keep them affordable, but he has a couple Parker’s for sale. Both are VH grade 12 gauge, one completely original 2-3/4” 30” full and full- $3,000, the other with a poorly reblued barrels, 3” chambers, must have been done a long time ago and refinished original stock $1,500.

I hunt a lot, mostly waterfowl average two days a week, but I also love pheasant hunting east of the mountains. My budget is $3,000, I’m torn between buying one of those really nice British guns, beautiful wood, fancy engraving, light straight stock, but both Parker’s look nice too. Please help.😀
Liked Replies
by ed good
ed good
berettas are wonderful gons...if you like that sorta thang...
1 member likes this
by Replacement
The boys at the now defunct Ivory Beads felt that the Sterly was the best of the American classics for waterfowling, even with steel. Since yours is F/F, I'd be real careful if using steel in it. So it sounds like you have the waterfowl part covered. For a light upland gun, the Parker 16 at 6-6 with 28" barrels might be on a zero frame. If it's a zero, that is a nearly ideal upland gun for extended carry. I have a Parker 16/28" on a one frame that weighs a bit more than that, and another Parker 16/28" on a zero frame that weighs a bit less than that. Both are great guns and handle 2-3/4" field loads (including the occasional pheasant loads) with no problems. Solid guns, attractive, will hold their value. On the other hand, I have one (only one) Brit gun, a 12/28" hammergun with laminated barrels. It's a beauty and I love to shoot it. That vs a Parker would be a tough choice. Standard advice is to buy the best gun you can find that fits you and your budget. A quality Spanish gun can be a real bargain if you know what you are looking at.
1 member likes this
by ed good
ed good
buy a six pound, 16 ga fox for birds...why burden yourself with a heavy, clunky ole parker...an skip the limey gons...lots of them dumped here with dangerously thin barrel walls...plus, they are often stocked for shooting incoming potted birds, not like our fair chase, flushed, american style bird hunting guns...

and by all means, alter the wood on the 16 to match your 12 gauge fox, which fits you so well...
1 member likes this
by Stanton Hillis
Stanton Hillis
I don't know what kind of loads you use for ducks, but if they're near the 1 1/4 oz. range I wouldn't be considering a lightweight, straight stocked gun. I find a straight grip pretty, but less adaptable to duck loads than a pistol, or semi-pistol, grip. I have a restocked 32" barreled A grade Phil. Fox with 3" chambers that I really should move down the road. It's straight gripped and I just cannot shoot it as well as my pistol gripped Fox duck guns. It's basically a single shot for me because it's just so much harder to manage the recoil before getting on that second shot. Light weight exacerbates that issue. I know Bo Whoop was straight gripped and Mr. Nash managed it just fine with heavy loads, but I ain't him. Most people ain't.
1 member likes this
by Joe Wood
Joe Wood
Beware of the Parker with 3” chambers unless it was made that way at the factory. If lengthened, the wall thickness in front of the chamber may have been compromised. If it’s a #2 frame it may be OK but not necessarily. Also, heavy recoil loads could do damage to that old wood. Caveat emptor!
1 member likes this
by ed good
ed good
a 6 1/2 pound parker is clubby when compared to a 6 pound fox....particularly at the end of the day when you been breaking trail in the thick stuff, where the birds are...

and if you are old an tired, a 5 1/2 pound ithaca 20 is even a better idea...
1 member likes this
by limapapa
12 ga. VH Parkers in shooting (as opposed to collecting) condition are all over the market at $1000, plus or minus a couple of hundred. 16 ga. VHE in original condition might get $3000, but would have to be really nice. Cant tell without seeing the guns but they seem overpriced based on the description. I have several 16 ga. field guns, two Parkers, an LC, and an Ithaca. All weigh between 6-5 and 6-12 and carry much nicer than a 7 1/2 lb 12 bore imho. You wont lose money on a 16 ga. if you buy it prudently. (I shy away from English guns, as you can probably tell, not because they are bad guns, but because they are so variable in design and fit. Again, jmho.)
1 member likes this
by Gr8day
GJ, Check your PMs
1 member likes this
by eightbore
I would be buying the VH, either at the Buy It Now price or bid aggressively.
1 member likes this
by docbill

If the gun you bought has short chambers, don't have them lengthened rather have the forcing cones angles reduced. It will pretty well get you the same place without removing a lot of metal. Contact Mike Orlen about this sort of work.
1 member likes this

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