Saturday, November 19, 2022

Fall Run was HOT!!!!

This year's fall run was hot! Whether slot sized stripers crashing beaches or big pigs feeding before the migration, the fishing and catching was outstanding. I don't think I made a single run out where I couldn't find fish 40"+. Whether 40" fish on the fly, or 40lb.+ crushing bunker and sucking down eels, we couldn't ask for much better fishing. While the young of the year report has certainly raised alarm bells, maybe these new regs have helped boost numbers of big breeders that will make up for shortfalls in the years to come. Time will tell.  

Fish like these on the fly.

Filling a Gap - Egyptian Snider Enfield Smooth Bore

My little collection of British military surplus rifles grew by one today. I have Pattern 53 Enfield which was developed to fire the .577 Minnie style ball and saw use in conflicts from the Crimea to India and the US Civil War in both Union and Confederate armies. By 1867, the muzzle loading Pattern 53 was becoming obsolete, and the British initially addressed this by adopting American Jacob Snider's conversion breech for the Pattern 53s. These bridged the gap for only a handful of years until the introduction of the .577/450 Martini-Henrys, and left me with a gap as well. P1864 Snider-Enfields have jumped up quite a bit, but at the Ye Connecticut Gun Guild show today I came across an inexpensive Snider conversion gun, the Egyptian Snider-Enfield Shotgun, manufactured circa 1870s. These shotguns were made from obsolete Snider rifles from the 1870s. The operation is basically the same, except this gun fires either .577 round ball or shotgun pellets (24GA brass). The British did not want indigenous security forces armed with the latest weapons, and we also see later Lee-Enfields converted to single shot .303/.410 shotguns as well (on my want list!). The breech is commercial with the Snider Patent markings , and there are Egyptian markings in Farsi throughout. The stock is in good shape (faint 1902 stamp). The bore is smooth and clear, and the rest of the metal is free of any pitting. The action on this carbine is strong, hold half cock and full. If I load some black powder brass shells, I should be able to shoot this old gun. Imagine if I showed up and broke a few clays with this!  

Tuesday, November 8, 2022

Brutally Bubba’d Beyond Belief to the Point of Buggering the Imagination

I like oddball stuff, and while the C.S. Shattuck “American” hardly made its mark on American history, it does hold a place as representative of a booming firearms industry in the late 19th century North East. New small scale manufacturers came and went with regularity. Maj. Charles Shattuck designed and manufactured a number of inexpensive pistols and shotguns in and around Springfield Massachusetts from the late 1870s to around 1910. While Shattuck shotguns didn’t become a household name, his employee Oscar F. Mossberg did pretty well for himself.(1)  This particular shotgun, one of about 961, was manufactured in 1889 and has a pretty unique barrel break. The front trigger actually opens the breech, while the rear trigger fires the gun. Iver Johnson employed a similar trigger action at the turn of the century. I just thought it was cool, and so I bought it online from a local auction house.  

Unfortunately, this gun, while in otherwise very good shape for 133 years old, was fairly recently brutally Bubba’d beyond belief. The barrel band was visible in a photograph, but not any evidence or listing description of the hack job on the barrel itself. As you can see from the images, not only was this newer handguard “fitted” utilizing the barrel band and a modern hex bolt, for some inexplicable reason, the barrel was filed down during the process. 

I like bringing these old relics back to shootable condition. While a lot of things I can fix, this not so much. They took a lot of material out of an old Damascus steel barrel. I think my immediate plan is to re-Bubba in a manner more consistent with the early 20th century using old parts and relegating this to a conversation piece, while I also have a lead on another gun that I can maybe swap the barrel and foregrip over from. These things are pretty worthless, but I like the idea of keeping one of these oddball pieces of history in an original, shootable condition.  


(1) - (2013) Shattuck, C.S. American Firearms. Available at:,%20C.S/Shattuck,%20C.S.html (Accessed: November 8, 2022).