Certain guns.....

Discussion in 'Browning Superposed Shotgun' started by Anatidae, May 3, 2023.

  1. Anatidae

    Anatidae .270 WIN

    .......just 'find' those who are most passionate about their details and history.

    This one is another example to support this contention.

    Bruski likes this.
  2. Ranger6

    Ranger6 Administrator Staff Member Administrator Global Moderator Forum Moderator

    ok no teasing now! What's the history? Please tell me you have more pictures. That's amazing.
  3. Anatidae

    Anatidae .270 WIN

    It's pretty special (to me). I've seen a few Superposed since the last acquisition in 2017 that piqued my interest, but none that just grabbed me like this one. I made a phone call and asked if it was still available. The seller said I was the 3rd caller - that the first 2 were thinking it over, but as far as he was concerned, it was available. I've heard that 'play' before - and it was not a factor in my decision. If it was available - that was all I needed to know because I had already decided to buy it. So, I sent payment for inspection and return privileges.

    Fabrique Nationale D3 Grade 'Speciale Chasse' model 24. Frame was stamped in 1980 (PM) and barrels were proofed in 1981 (t).

    The best thing about this pattern that rarely appears in the US..........it is a 20 gauge!

    It is basically the FN equivalent of the American Superlight (weight is 6lbs) yet it has a pistol grip 14-1/2" LOP to skip-line checkered butt. 3-pc forearms.

    67cm (26-3/8") 5.3mm to 4.6mm tapered vent rib - chokes appear to be cyl/cyl even though marked f/m and advertised m/ic. Who cares? It is elegant beyond words.

    It was supposedly found in Italy and imported to the US.

    It had a cracked ejector extension (visible in the ad photos) and upon removal of the forearm, I discovered visible gaps between the lateral ribs and barrels. Who Cares? I've been through this before. I boxed it up and sent it off a week after purchase, to have the issues corrected.

    I'd rather have this example with these minor issues, (for the price I paid) - than NOT have this little gem, at all. I hope to have it back within the next 2 months. So, make that THREE (3) 'projects' that I'm hoping to get back in the next month or 2. I guess I AM crazy.

    It is not signed by an engraver because there is no place to sign a full-coverage engraving without interfering with the design - BUT, I have my suspicions that Sophie Purgal is up there, sending me some of her best engravings because she knows I LOVE her work. The scrollwork is so tiny and it is flawless......one of her traits.

    Other reasons I think Sophie did this one......

    I have never encountered an FN Superposed with an engraved trigger or rib. It's just a little something 'extra' that reflects her passion for engraving and her unique personality.

    There is an FN C4.2 Grade in Antwerp, BE signed by Andre' Dierckx that is 10 serial number digits above this D3. So, I hope to get some info from Belgium on both guns, eventually. Good things just take time.

    Thanks for your interest and comments.
    Last edited: May 3, 2023
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  4. Ranger6

    Ranger6 Administrator Staff Member Administrator Global Moderator Forum Moderator

    Very nice sir. The engraving is amazing. I would love to have one, but I would have to shoot it. Your knowledge of these guns is the best I have seen. Very impressed. Will you be making a case for this one or have one already?
  5. Anatidae

    Anatidae .270 WIN

    I appreciate that.

    Oh, I'll be shooting this one, for sure! It is already nicely broken-in and is really smooth - not stiff.

    Interesting question on the case. I haven't given that a thought - but I do not have a case for this one. I had a chance to buy a really nice Custom Shop case from a fellow collector at a reasonable value but didn't have a need for it at the time.......of course.

    I'll see what I can come-up with. I have an Emmibi case for another FN Custom Shop gun that is red leather with olive interior. I might have to poke around a bit and see how it is constructed. At least I have a pattern to follow. The locks would certainly be much easier to source.


    I will experiment with different color schemes. I have some unique color options to choose from.

    Ranger6 likes this.
  6. Auzzie

    Auzzie 20g

    Hi Anatidae,
    Awesome and interesting post as usual. Can't say have ever seen a trigger engraved like that either. Always take note of things on any high grade I ever get to see. Thanks for sharing the story and knowledge. I for one appreciate what gets learned.
    Anatidae likes this.
  7. Anatidae

    Anatidae .270 WIN

    Thanks! Yeah, I learn something every time I'm afforded an opportunity to study a gun.

    I am amazed at the skill and artistry of the subtle details and shading. You can't really get a sense of the small scale on this 20 gauge frame and how accurate each stroke of the hammer and burin is placed. The only word that I can think of is.....'Extraordinary'.


    One other note about the case.......I already have one on the bench right now, so I'm more focused on finishing that one before I branch-out. I'm trying to perfect the prep (buffing ) and bronze finish so I can plate 3 more sets of locks. Once I get that under my belt, I'll be able to build some more pre-war style cases.
    Last edited: May 4, 2023
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  8. Auzzie

    Auzzie 20g

    There is some serious skill and artistry on display with that piece. You only have to try and engrave your initials on a spanner to appreciate the difficulty let alone what it takes to create an artistic scene and keep it all in a boundary. Absolutely amazing talent.
  9. Anatidae

    Anatidae .270 WIN

    Gun arrived at the gunsmith's yesterday. He had disassembled parts of it, made his assessments and called me this morning to discuss a scope of work.......not put it in a rack to let it 'sit' while it waits 'its' turn.

    Ejector extension won't be a problem re-fitting after micro-welding.
    Barrel ribs to be re-laid - slow rust blue
    Timing is off so forearm knuckle will be built-up (micr0-welded) and re-fitted - lock-up and tolerances restored - CORRECTLY.

    He'll call the barrel guy, coordinate a work sequence and establish a schedule , then take photos and make notes and detailed weld specifications and send the ejector extension (and maybe the forearm knuckle) off Monday.

    Anyone who has ever relied on others to do work to a high quality knows the hardest part of the job (for the owner) is the wait. So, again, another 'wait' begins. That's 3 guns 'out', now - but I've also talked to my wood guy who assures me he will be back in the shop 100% next week. Maybe those 2 will be finished, soon.......one, a 6-year ordeal, and the other, a 3-year journey.

    This will be good and tight when it comes back in 3-4 months - and I'll do my best to shoot it loose in the next 10 years, God willing.

    No woodwork contemplated at this point. All that is in satisfactory condition, for my purposes.

    1-3/8" x 1-5/8" x 14-1/2" LOP 1/4" cast 'off' at heel, 1/2" at 'toe' - almost perfect for me.

    These are very similar dimensions to a 12ga Model 13 'Speciale Chasse' that I restored to original straight grip configuration a couple years ago. I bolted the original straight stock back on that gun after having a new trigger guard made and engraved for it - and my first thought was, "there's no way this will fit me!"
    I closed my eyes, put it up to my shoulder and opened my eyes to be perfectly centered on the rib, horizontally and vertically. I really got lucky with that one because the pistol grip replacement stock that was imported with that gun did not fit me 'at all'. But now (with the original straight grip stock) it just dares me to miss.
    Last edited: May 5, 2023
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  10. Ranger6

    Ranger6 Administrator Staff Member Administrator Global Moderator Forum Moderator

    No woodwork, not sure I could live with that! That wood is gorgeous. You make me more jealous with every picture. I'm not sure I could be as patient as you. I guess" good things, do come to those who wait". Beautiful dog, by the way. I'm guess he is your #1 buddy.
  11. Anatidae

    Anatidae .270 WIN

    The dog is my shadow.........and yes, my best buddy. I never have to go looking for him. He finds me, whatever room I'm in. 'Pretty special.

    Well, I don't claim to be very patient but I certainly hope my vision for these 3 guns was 20-20 and that the result will be worth the wait.

    Thanks for your interest and comments.
  12. Ranger6

    Ranger6 Administrator Staff Member Administrator Global Moderator Forum Moderator

    What's your best buddies name? I think your vision will be spot on. It will be worth the wait. You can't rush perfection in my opinion. Keep us posted.
  13. Anatidae

    Anatidae .270 WIN

    Topbrass' Just Turn Me Loose - call name, 'Rip' (Golden Retriever)

    Topbrass' U-betcha Sweet Taz - call name ' Taz' was Rip's sister of 8-1/2 years. She was diagnosed with cancer in November and we had to say Good-bye 10 days before Christmas. So, we've all been numb to everything until 2 weeks ago - my wife got another puppy and we are all in severe reactive mode.........but our family has a new 'spark plug', now........the rest of the engine needs an overhaul.

    Taz put the 'GO' in Golden......

    New pup is 'Stonefly's Delta Blues - call name, 'Jazz'. It's close to 'Taz' so we can all keep her in our hearts. Apparently, 'Jazz' is an alternative spelling for Jihad - she's being a little terrorist right now.
  14. Ranger6

    Ranger6 Administrator Staff Member Administrator Global Moderator Forum Moderator

    Beautiful dogs. I understand the heavy heart. Sorry for your loss. I had a lab that died from cancer 15 years ago. Spent a ton of money trying to save her, but vet finally said it wasn’t going to get better no matter what they did. I’ve lost many hunting dogs in my life but it sure don’t get any easier.
    The new spark will for sure lessen the pain.
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  15. Anatidae

    Anatidae .270 WIN

    Thanks. All the more reason to make the most of their time (and ours) together- here and now. Those who are gone now are but a heartbeat away. The same kind of connection that God wants with us.
    Ranger6 likes this.
  16. Auzzie

    Auzzie 20g

    Yes if your a true Superposed person you can definately tell the difference in the way they shut. A properly timed one virtually cocks hammers , shuts and locks itself in your hands effortlessly.
    It is a unique feel and high grade Miroku G 13 and President even high end Citoti don't have that particular feel.
  17. Anatidae

    Anatidae .270 WIN

    So true! Good points. If owners had just lubricated the mating surfaces prior to assembly, most of the typical wear would be radically reduced. It doesn’t take much.

    One other note regarding production history relative to the FN-marketed Superposed……

    The D3 engraving pattern is the 10th highest Grade of the 12 original FN Grades developed in the pre-war era.

    Those FN engraving patterns were divided in 4 categories: Standard, Standard Gravés (engraved), Demi-Luxe, and Grand Luxe, each differentiated by the letters A, B, C, & D.

    The 12 FN Grades were:
    A1, A2, (Standard)
    B1, B2, (Standard engraved)
    C1, C2, C3, (Deluxe)
    D1 thru D5 (Grand Deluxe)

    The higher the grade, the fancier the wood, tighter checkering, dopper points (C & D Grades), and 3-pc fore ends and skip-line checkered butts (D Grades only).
    Auzzie likes this.
  18. Auzzie

    Auzzie 20g

    Yes some extreme pressure lube is way cheaper than a D3 rebuild . Metal on metal no good ever!

    Fancy having a beautiful piece like that and running it dry. You can bet previous owner never looked at dip stick or tyres on car , only turned key.
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  19. Koen Van Oorschot

    Koen Van Oorschot Copper BB

    Exceptional! very nice!
  20. Anatidae

    Anatidae .270 WIN

    Merci, Koen

    Welcome to this site. Perhaps you will share some of your FN’s here.

    bonne journee!

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