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#389449 01/05/15 07:19 PM
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I have a German made 16 gauge SxS shotgun with 2-1/2 chambers. The name on the gun is BSW - Suhl. I read the history of this company, but I have never seen anything regarding the quality of these shotguns. Does anyone know anything about them? General value?

Last edited by texasbilly; 01/05/15 07:19 PM.
texasbilly #389451 01/05/15 07:30 PM
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You may want to check with the folks at the German Gun Collectors Ass'n website. I passed up on a chance to buy one a few years ago and still regret it. Subject to the rule about buying the gun and not the maker, BSWs were well made and reflect the quality of German making at the time.

Posting some pics (including the proof marks) will help elicit some more specific comments.

Last edited by Doverham; 01/05/15 07:31 PM.

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texasbilly #389458 01/05/15 07:46 PM
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It was originally Simson, one of the larger companies in Suhl. (if not the largest) They were jews, so they sensibly left Germany, I think in 1934 or thereabouts. The company name then changed to BSW. As I recall, the name was then changed to Gustloff-Werke in 1944. From what I've read, the quality was similar to the other German firms. The ones I've actually handled were pretty standard for pre-war German guns, the quality was excellent. Not a lot of'em around, you might see what Simpson's Ltd. is asking for theirs, they usually have a few.

The Simson name was also used on post-war guns.



Last edited by Ken61; 01/05/15 07:52 PM.

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texasbilly #389460 01/05/15 07:54 PM
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61: sadly, not all of the simson family escaped the nazi menace.

tragically, some were murdered...simson were makers of fine sporting arms in suhl for generations.

latest original simson sxs i have seen was date coded 1936, as i recall.

here is some more history:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simson_%28company%29


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texasbilly #389488 01/06/15 12:45 AM
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texasbilly, it is usually hazardous to your wallet to judge a gun's quality by the brand name. Most makers/vendors made/sold a wide variety of Original Quality grades of guns; OQ grade depending on price point. You will be far better served in developing your ability to judge quality on your own; remembering it is independent from the name on the gun.

I value vintage guns reasonably accurately by combining Original Quality grade (OQ), Brand Value level (BV), and Current Condition level (CC). So, I'll assume this was between a second and third grade OQ gun (OQ6 to OQ7); say, 1/3 good engraving coverage, good figured wood, and good fit and finish. The brand value level for BSW is level four or BV4 (lessor known Continental makers, often associated with modest quality guns). Assume the Current Condition is between CC3 (significant use) and CC4 (heavy use, but no abuse). BV4-OQ6-CC3 = $1160, BV4-OQ6-CC4 = $883, BV4-OQ7-CC3 = $810, and BV4-OQ7-CC4 = $616. See if you can fit the gun as you see/remember it into that matrix. Comment welcome.

Questions?

DDA

texasbilly #389490 01/06/15 12:56 AM
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I have one of their 16 gauges that was made during the Nazi overtaking of this Company. The quality remained excellent.
Jim


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texasbilly #389503 01/06/15 11:05 AM
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BSW became Simson again after the war, although they were made in the same East German plant as Sauers (also called Fortuna) and Merkels. Sauer is probably the most confusing, because they were being made simultaneously in both East and West Germany. The West German ones were always marked West Germany. Quality seemed to be pretty good in all of those guns.

L. Brown #389506 01/06/15 11:21 AM
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This is the one I shoulda bought - it was a lot cheaper than a Merkel and looked just as well made (and those are not cracks on the stock wrist for any eagle-eyed viewers).





Last edited by Doverham; 01/06/15 11:22 AM.

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texasbilly #389510 01/06/15 12:04 PM
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being an ejector gun would have sold me is that a GDR gun?

mc #389511 01/06/15 12:18 PM
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No - it was prewar, late '30s. And 2 3/4" chambers . . . .

Last edited by Doverham; 01/06/15 12:19 PM.

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texasbilly #389512 01/06/15 12:21 PM
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really nice looking gun and ejectors!

texasbilly #389521 01/06/15 02:40 PM
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That is a nice one, looks like overhanging sears and maybe-hard to tell from the pics, bushed pins ?


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Dave K #389555 01/06/15 09:50 PM
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Yes to the intercepting sears, no to the bushed strikers. 30" barrels, about 7lbs - it looked like a good candidate for SC and/or waterfowl.


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texasbilly #389585 01/07/15 09:02 AM
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Intercepting sears or overhead/overhanging sears? German guns can fool you that way. If you see a screw in that position on a Brit boxlock, you can be pretty sure it's intercepting sears.

L. Brown #389604 01/07/15 11:15 AM
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Thank you, Larry - you are correct, I tend to forget that distinction between Brit and German boxlocks. That point is further detailed in this link, which also discusses BSW shotguns:

Kerner


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texasbilly #389610 01/07/15 12:05 PM
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I had a BSW 12 guage made in 1936 for awhile. It was a plain (except for the nice scalloped receiver and their foolish "Nazi duck" on the floorplate) boxlock extractor with original 2 3/4" chambers and pretty clearly intended for export: marked "Germany" with a semi-pistol gripped stock and slightly fuller-than-usual forend. 29.5" barrels choked full and fuller.

Had the name of an Armenian-owned gunshop in Salonika, Greece on the barrel. Always wondered how it found its way into the collection of the US Air Force officer from whom I bought it, but I never found out. He'd pounded it with years of heavy trap loads and US high base duck loads and it was slightly but noticeably off face, so I sold it to another guy who liked it enough to repair that.

Even the plain BSWs are nice guns.

texasbilly #389622 01/07/15 01:06 PM
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Even wartime (Gustloff-Werke) were very nice guns. Flying eagle with swastika brings tiny premium for sure just like US military marks on my 1941 Ithaca. Not bad at all for gun from famous bicycle and baby carriage maker. Superb value for ejector gun when compared to modern Merkel 47e. Sixty five or sixty seven millimeter chambers are no problem though typical choke combo might need some pro honing. Ammo is very easy to find I have shipment coming to my front door from Montana USA.

texasbilly #389660 01/07/15 05:46 PM
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Ammo is only a problem when you forget to take enough with you on a hunting trip. I remember running short of 28ga shells in the UP. Had a 20 along as well, but had been doing well with the 28. Most places in the boonies, all you can count on finding, for sure, are 12's and 20's.

texasbilly #389713 01/08/15 08:25 AM
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A box or two of standard Remington game loads from Walmart aren't going to hunt German made sxs shotgun. That is huge reason to own a 12 bore that is because the only 16s I have seen at Walmart were those in Green/yellow box. I would avoid green and yellow boxed Nitromags thats for sure.

texasbilly #389727 01/08/15 09:37 AM
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You answered yet another of my questions about the BSW-Suhl SxS 16 gauge shotgun that I have. Since it is light in weight, I was concerned that it might not be able to take the punishment of a round (or two) of sporting clays. I shoot low pressure, 7/8 ounce loads in 2-1/2 shells. You have made me confident that the gun will hold up well, that is unless I beat the heck out of it.

Thanks.

texasbilly #389730 01/08/15 09:45 AM
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I shot a lot of those green and yellow boxed, high brass Remington 16's (3 1/4 DE, 1 1/8 oz) in a pre-war Sauer on which I'd had the chambers punched (before I knew better). Accounted for a small mountain of pheasants, as well as assorted grouse, woodcock, and quail. It was my first classic sxs, and I shot it for 20+ years. Only time it was in the shop was when the piece that connects the top lever to the Greener crossbolt broke. Still tight when I sold it. German guns, even when light, tend to be pretty strong.

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