- Double guns: Side by Side Double Barreled Shotguns and SxS Double Rifles

Checklist For Identification/Valuation of Your Double Gun

by R. P. Reid

The following list will help experts in various shooting/collecting disciplines identify your firearms' origins, dates, history and, in some cases, value. Please note that without a gun in hand, any identification is subject to error and valuations should be used as guidelines only until an actual inspection of the piece by a qualified expert. Any recommendations regarded to shootability of a gun in question are to be regarded as guidelines only and no antique gun should be shot without an inspection by a qualified gunsmith.

Please fill in to the best of your ability.


Serial number with last 3 digits replaced with XXX:

Caliber or Gauge:

Barrel Length:

Have barrels been cut:

Are there extra barrel sets with the gun:

Patent dates:
(if any)

(if known)

Action type:
(pump, single shot, double rifle, etc)

If a double gun is it a boxlock, sidelock, or backaction:
(ie. L.C Smith is a sidelock, a Parker is a boxlock. Back action locks have plates that extend rearward from the hammers)

Exposed hammers or hammerless?

(if known)

City/Country of manufacture:
(if known)

How/when acquired:


Type of butt stock:
(straight, pistol-grip, round knob, etc)

Type of forend:
(splinter, beavertail, semi-beavertail, etc.)

(symbols stamped on barrels/actions of European guns -- often consist of crowns, numbers, arrows, etc. describe and list locations)

Exact barrel and rib markings including punctuation and location on barrel/rib:

Exact words and markings on the action including punctuation and location on the action:

(recoil pad, horn, skelaton, metal, etc.)

Name on recoil pad:
(ie. Pachmyer White Line, etc.)

Checkering pattern:
(if any)

Checkering lines per inch:
(how many rows of checkering per inch -- usually about 18-24)

Type of wood:
(Claro or Circissian walnut, etc. if known or just describe... light, with contrasting dark streaks, fine grain, etc.)

Inlays in wood and location:
(if any)

Engraving: (describe pattern, ie. fine scrollwork, deep cut oak leaves, gamebirds, dogs, etc. and where scenes are engraved -- ie. dog pointing at pheasant on left sideplate, flying quail on right sideplate, initials ABC on bottom in front of triggerguard, etc.)

Percentage engraving:
(how much of the metal on the action is covered with engraving. Are barrels engraved at all especially near muzzle or breech.)

Inlays in metal and location:
(ie. Gold woodcock inlaid on left sideplate, gold wire band at breech)

Any engine-turning on interior metal parts or breech-faces, etc:
(do not disassemble gun... if visible list, if not visible, do not bother looking)

(ie. raised and vented, engraving, etc.)

(ie. Ivory bead(s), Express Rifle Sights, etc):


Has any part of the gun been refinished:
(reblued, restored, etc.)

Who did the restoration work:
(if known)

Are all parts original:
(if known)

Original finish on action, barrels, stock:
(ie. Case-colored action, blue barrels and oil-finish stock)

Current finish on action, barrels, stock:
(ie. 20% Case-colors rest of action shiny, blue barrels turning brown and oil-finish stock with 80% original finish)

Any rust:

Any rust with pits:

Are insides of barrels pitted or shiny:

Are the barrels damascus:
(look for swirling patterns on the barrels or the words twist, damascus, laminated steel, etc. on the rib.)

Are barrels tight:

Type of latch mechanism:
(top lever, under-lever, lifter, etc.)

Is stock cracked:
(describe crack if yes)

Is checkering sharp:

Is there a forend latch:

Do the screws on the action all line up with each-other:

Do you have original paperwork:
(boxes, hangtags, receipts, etc.)

Is it cased:
(if yes describe case)

Any special features you can identify:


Copyright, R. Pierce Reid, 1996. Anyone may use, distribute, print or otherwise forward this guide in any format or on any medium without limitation so long as this copyright notice is left intact. home
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Updated 1/14/97 -Copyright © 1997