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Old Japanese SKB o/u


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Has anyone owned one of these ? I know that the build quality and reliability was always extremely good and I did own one of there side by sides for a while and I couldn’t fault it.

Interested to know how they handled ? I think the more modern skb is made in Turkey ? so not interested in those.

Cosmetics aren’t everyone’s cup of tea I know ,but can anyone remember what they shot like?

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3 hours ago, reindeer said:

They were built like a tank and as heavy as one. Strong and longlasting quality Japanese shotgun.

Just wondered if they handled ok they seem good value for money ,just been looking at a 20 ga for the price of a basic Turkish job.

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They didn’t handle as well as the Winchester 101; they felt as heavy as they were. A 101 lightweight isn’t as light as suggested by the word but the optimal balance makes it feel lighter than it actually is. SKB o/u shotguns missed this delicate balance. A 20 bore is of course not as heavy as a 12 bore and a sound SKB is as good or better than any Turkish made gun.

Edited by reindeer
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I was lent one years ago back in the 90s when my other gun was in for repair. It was an open choked skeet gun and at the time was impressed at how well it handled for sporting. That was an old gun even then. I guess there is nothing much that would go wrong with them but if it did I should think spares are difficult to get hold of.

All in all I like 80s/90s guns especially Berettas as I think they were better made then than they are today.

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I think what may be an issue is that so many of these were made with the at the time "in vogue" or "de rigeur" twenty-six inch barrels when English Skeet and DTL and Trap were the dominant clay sports. Sporting was unheard of save what were called "sporting" targets at weekend hay bale shoots over the farmer's field. As with any gun have the wall thicknesses checked and also looseness when closed as, as others say, spares may be an issue especilly springs and ejectors if those wear. It all depends on the price asked really. Oh...and if you are tall the length of pull, the stock, will be short! I had one of the S/B/S the BSA branded one and as the OP says they were unfaultable save for maybe a tad too much drop on the stock.

Edited by enfieldspares
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Thanks for all the replies ,on the basis of which I took the plunge .I am very impressed with it I must say ,I would say build quality is extremely good ,wood to metal fit perfect  wood seems nicely figured ,checkering perfect also very fine ,maybe over engineered if there is such a thing metal work all nicely finished.

Its marked New Skb company which as it’s a 605 dates it to between 1987 and 1989,I have gone through all of there old catalogs but can’t find any 30 inch 20 bores advertised and as this one is a 30 it’s a bit of a mystery

Hopefully someone can confirm but it looks like it’s been proofed for superior steel cartridges,surprised that the gunshop didn’t mention that.It comes with its own alloy case and a full set of multi chokes.Handling seems very good and weighs in at 6lb 6 oz,I was looking for an old Winchester 20 ga but gave up in the end prices for a good one we’re just daft ,I would say that this is built and finished every bit as good if not better.

I will try it on a few clays then see if I can find a few steel recipes for next seasons duck.Have added a few pics .

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On the proof marks:  LP over 08 is I think London Proof House, 2008.  The SUP and Fleur de Lis mark is "Superior Steel - a mark apparently introduced in 2006. 

See  https://www.aabrownandsons.com/prooftable.html for marks and http://www.hallowellco.com/proof_date_codes.htm for date codes.

So my view is that your gun was London proofed in 2008 for steel.  I am not a gunsmith and if in doubt after looking at the references I have used abiove, see a gunsmith.

How that ties in with 87 to 89 I have no idea as there are no 'reproof' indications.

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I had a double o/u  and also a five shot auto way back in the 70s when they first appeared on the market.  The auto had thousands of rounds through it as back then I was shooting a lot of clays twice a week. Eventualy the tube blew off along with the barrel, the threads went. I got a new tube and it became the property of another shooter and was still flattening clays the last I saw it.  The O/U was not as good . The rib was not centred but I learned to shoot it anyway and as a DTL gun it worked very well and never let me down.  If I m right they where labeled BSA/SKB certainly the auto.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, JohnfromUK said:

On the proof marks:  LP over 08 is I think London Proof House, 2008.  The SUP and Fleur de Lis mark is "Superior Steel - a mark apparently introduced in 2006. 

See  https://www.aabrownandsons.com/prooftable.html for marks and http://www.hallowellco.com/proof_date_codes.htm for date codes.

So my view is that your gun was London proofed in 2008 for steel.  I am not a gunsmith and if in doubt after looking at the references I have used abiove, see a gunsmith.

How that ties in with 87 to 89 I have no idea as there are no 'reproof' indications.

Thanks for the info ,I am assuming it is an 87 - 89 gun by the catalogue but clearly the proof marks are later . ? Maybe they werestill making the 605 in 2008 although I can’t find any mention of them for sale after 89 ,maybe I will email them .
Thought it might have had newer barrels fitted but all serial numbers match and as you say it was proofed in 2008  certainly no reproof marks ,so I must conclude 2008 it is.

Edited by holloway
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14 minutes ago, Gordon R said:

That looks a lot of gun for the money. I have held a couple of these and have been tempted to buy one, because it was cheap at the time. They look well engineered to me.

I would say they are under rated and secondhand values are low ,sadly now all new ones are Turkish since the Japanese factory closed and a new firm took over.

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