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Midland gun history


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A gun that's look like it has been used for what it was made for WORK , and still got several years left in the ole gal yet . Over the years you have had it Paul, its seen a lot of dawns and dusks in some top wildfowling places and lets hope it see quite a few more.

 

I had a Midland Gun Company 3in hammer gun 32in barrels for over 20yrs , and not once in all that time did it ever let me down even in my younger days when I used it all the year round on pigeons as well as duck .

 

I now use a B S A 2 3/4 , not the best looking gun in the world but was built for work rather than its looks . its no good having a good looking woman that don't work..........same sort of thing really . :lol:

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The salt and mud got to it a bit last Tuesday. Photos taken just before she got cleaned.

 

A gun that's look like it has been used for what it was made for WORK , and still got several years left in the ole gal yet . Over the years you have had it Paul, its seen a lot of dawns and dusks in some top wildfowling places and lets hope it see quite a few more.

 

I had a Midland Gun Company 3in hammer gun 32in barrels for over 20yrs , and not once in all that time did it ever let me down even in my younger days when I used it all the year round on pigeons as well as duck .

 

I now use a B S A 2 3/4 , not the best looking gun in the world but was built for work rather than its looks . its no good having a good looking woman that don't work..........same sort of thing really . :lol:

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  • 3 years later...
On 10/22/2014 at 22:20, tullyhubbert said:

 

A bit of an update, I emailed Guy N Smith and he got in touch with me a few days ago.

 

He does indeed own the Midland name but has little in the way of records. From photographs his best guess is that the gun may be a 'Universal' model which was manufactured up until the start of World War 2 and cost £16 in 1938. Similarity in models, shared components etc make identification difficult.

 

He has filed my case and will contact me if any more information becomes available.

 

Thanks everyone, its been interesting.

hi please can i have mr smith's contact details as i have a double 410 i would like to date.

regards

chris

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I've really enjoyed reading this thread.

There's a wealth of knowledge amongst the PW members who are only too keen to share their knowledge. Gunman particularly should really document his experiences of his time in the trade (if he hasn't already) which I'm sure would make interesting and enlightening reading. Whilst the books by well known current authors give good facts, it's the 'hands on' knowledge and intimate practices (and sometimes mal-practices) within the once great British gun making industry that I find absolutely fascinating.

Researching the history of a gun, as far as is possible, in my view, is much of the joy of ownership.

I'm sure that the knowledge so far gained by the OP has enriched his enjoyment of the gun, particularly as it has such sentimental value and I wish him well in any further research.

OB

 

 

 

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On 10/23/2014 at 09:34, Blackpowder said:

What a great post tully and the usual fantastic response from forum members. As an aside I have a copy of Guy N. Smiths book,'Gamekeeping and Shooting for Amatuers' first published in 1976 reprinted in 1981 and 1983. Guy Smiths other publications include 'Ferreting and Trapping for Amateurs', ditto 'Ratting and Rabbiting', and' Moles and their Control'. In your Midland you have an honest gun likely to serve many further years of sport.

 

Blackpowder

Guy Smith has now published a short book on Midland Gun Co.  https://www.guynsmith.com/product/midland-gun/

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On 23/10/2014 at 09:34, Blackpowder said:

What a great post tully and the usual fantastic response from forum members. As an aside I have a copy of Guy N. Smiths book,'Gamekeeping and Shooting for Amatuers' first published in 1976 reprinted in 1981 and 1983. Guy Smiths other publications include 'Ferreting and Trapping for Amateurs', ditto 'Ratting and Rabbiting', and' Moles and their Control'. In your Midland you have an honest gun likely to serve many further years of sport.

 

Blackpowder

I have the same book, a great read for a keen kid I have had it 40 odd years.  In it he writes of having a Midland built for Wildfowling 3 inch Magnum with 26 inch barrels choked F/F IIRC and killing a very high Greylag with it with a single pellet under the beak, the book is buried in the loft currently.

Edited by JRDS
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One of the men who taught me my trade , father and uncle Jack and Tommy Kelly  plus another family member worked as "jobbers " within the Midland building . They worked 3/4 days a week for the Midland ,the rest building barreled actions  for the trade , My friend Brendon Kelly was trained as a stocker with the idea that they would build complete guns . Unfortunately WW2 started and put paid to that . Harold King the last manager/foreman at the old Midland worked in F J Wiseman's building  in Price Street and was a fount of knowledge and well respected man in the trade for many years ..

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I also have a Midland 3" double full choke 12 similar to those illustrated, it has 30" barrels and unusually a Greener side safety, a Greener crossbolt and a straight hand stock...I had it reproved some years ago to 1200 bar to accommodate modern 3" cartridges! 50g of ITM in a Gordon case closed with a RTO certainly sorts the geese!

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  • 10 months later...
2 hours ago, graham s said:

hi all I have recently brought a midland pigeon gun 12g choked with a square cross lock I think it I date around 1950-60 wondered if some of you can give me some more info on it I have attached some pictures

 A web search for proof date codes would tell you quite a lot, and you could start with these two sites:

 http://www.hallowellco.com/proof_date_codes.htm

http://www.gunproof.com/Proof_Memoranda/RULESOFP.PDF

I think you will find it was made prior to 1954, and re-proofed some time after 1954.     Take a close look at the letters and numbers associated with the crossed swords, below rear end of the left barrel.

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8 minutes ago, graham s said:

hi lord v I cant see that it would as late as 85 as midland ceased in the 60s early 70s unless that is when it was reproofed

Are the barrels original? 

Because thats the only proof mark I can see and I don't think the proof house would have erased a previous one putting on a new one? 

Though the gun has a x bolt so likely to be pre mid 50's, but flats are pretty clean and clearly stamped. 

Edited by Lord v
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Original proof prior to 1954, specifying the maximum shot load (1-1/2 oz) and using the old style description of bore diameter (13/1).

Reproof 1954-1989, specifying maximum pressure (4 tons per square inch) and bore diameter 0.728".

Nice engraving and side clips, so I guess it must have been one their better quality guns.   I am quite envious.

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