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Min Bbl Thickness - for woods usage (grouse/wc)
Unread 11-13-2020, 02:48 PM   #1
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Default Min Bbl Thickness - for woods usage (grouse/wc)

Hi - I see a lot of discussion about minimum bbl thickness in terms of safety with vintage guns (so the gun doesn't blow up) but it's something I've seen less within the context of being able to handle hunting usage, say in a grouse/woodcock situation, where bonking on trees in the thick stuff happens. Do I need to worry about barrels denting if they are say, thick enough to be safe (I'm here going to call that ~25 thou for a 12)

While this isn't a Parker-specific question, I've been getting the "classic double" bug and I figure this group has the expertise to answer this question from evaluating old guns that you are buying more than the "just get a Mossberg pump!" crowd.

Is say 30 or even 25 thou MWT enough to not be overly "delicate" in the woods? I have never dented my barrels on my modern guns, but these things are chambered for up to 3.5"(!?) so I would assume they are much beefier-barreled (and they feel like it). If I go to a lightweight vintage double (with sufficient MWT for safety, etc.) am I going to come out of the woods with a dented mess? i realize lots of types of hunting and shooting in general are just open spaces/trails, so this might not be an issue they think about.

Thanks!
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Unread 11-13-2020, 03:25 PM   #2
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Hello Katrina -

.0025” - .0030” barrel wall thickness is generally considered safe for most all upland hunting situations.
You are not likely to dent your barrels except in situations like accidental falling or dropping your gun. Lightly bumping them into trees/saplings in a normal day of hunting will most likely not dent them but it makes sense to check them over while cleaning at the end of a day’s hunting.
Have fun - be safe - and use reasonable low pressure upland or target loads.





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Unread 11-13-2020, 04:36 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean Romig View Post
Hello Katrina -

.0025 - .0030 .
He means .025 - .030", He's just old
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Unread 11-13-2020, 04:42 PM   #4
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Dean Your decimals are in the wrong place .025 = 25 thou. and that wall thickness as you say is plenty safe. As for handling guns safely in the woods the dent depends on a lot of things and the results would be different in every case. If you are swinging on a bird and slam your bbls against a tree they might not dent, but drop your bbla against the corner of a stone fireplace hearth or similar structure on a stone wall then they will probably dent regardless of the mwt
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Unread 11-13-2020, 04:55 PM   #5
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One could put a dent in virtually any vintage gun depending upon how hard you're whacking it into a tree, how hard you've fallen or how unlucky you've been. There are oodles and oodles of vintage doubles with <.025 MWT that have survived a century or more of usage with nary a dent.


Here's what one vintage gun dealer opined in a post in these pages several years ago:
http://parkerguns.org/forums/showthr...8456#post78456
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Unread 11-13-2020, 04:58 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edgarspencer View Post
He means .025 - .030", He's just old
We are ALL old, so? Most of the dents i have seen in which the cause is known are from dropped while cleaning or falls while crossing stone walls. I have hit many trees without leaving a mark on the barrel.
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Unread 11-13-2020, 05:54 PM   #7
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Thanks guys for the advice and sharing your wisdom - I will try and not fret too much and I look forward to the joys of carrying a nice light vintage double in the woods!

I fall kind of a lot but especially early season... but I am hard wired to protect the gun... This fall I took a few good diggers but fell straight down on my knees with the gun held up high 😆 so knock on wood Ive swung into a few trees and bumped into things but never fallen on to my gun or dropped it 🤞
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Unread 11-13-2020, 07:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katrina Wood View Post
I've been getting the "classic double" bug and I figure this group has the expertise to answer this question from evaluating old guns that you are buying more than the "just get a Mossberg pump!" crowd.
Just curious. You never said what classic double gun you are using for hunting? Parker, Fox, LeFever, Ithaca? Or something from across the pond?

Hope you get a lot of birds and be safe.
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Unread 11-13-2020, 10:26 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Frank Cronin View Post
Just curious. You never said what classic double gun you are using for hunting? Parker, Fox, LeFever, Ithaca? Or something from across the pond?

Hope you get a lot of birds and be safe.
Hi Frank, I just pulled the trigger on my first sxs, a few days ago, it's a little 20 ga francotte that seemed like a great deal for what I was looking for. Great shape, but with some stock modifications that I think will suit me well (and made it more affordable). So, maybe not a "classic" by everyone's standards but a neat old double that I think *should* be a superb G/W gun for me. She will be fed a strict diet of RST/comparable low pressure shells, whatever is suitable once barrels and everything are checked out.

The process of researching/shopping for the gun has been a real journey that's just begun, and the more I learn, the more I realize it's less and less about "my next bird gun"....
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Unread 11-14-2020, 04:12 AM   #10
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Francotte is a great gun and had, for a long time, been underappreciated. In the last decade or so the prices on good francottes have been continually rising. Some friends own some dandy little small bore Francottes and they love them. So congratulations on finding one that fits your needs.






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Not because I think they're better than the other breeds,
but because I'm a romantic - stuck on tradition - and to me,
a Setter just "belongs" in the grouse picture."

George King, "That's Ruff", 2010 - a timeless classic.
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