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 Post subject: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2010 11:36 am 
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I have a Spanish 410 side by side and am trying to find some history on it. It has "F.A.B. arms" stamped on the back end of the barrel along with "Made in Spain", "california special" and "3 in Mag". Can anybody tell me anything about this gun, particularly , what does "F.A.B. Arms" mean?




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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2010 2:43 pm 
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Break the gun apart. Look at the Spanish info threads posted at the top of the forum. Compare the marks with what you see on the threads.

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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2010 3:10 pm 
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There is insufficient information to identify what you have. Is it a hammerless type or, does it have exposed hammers? Is it a folding type? F.A.B. Arms probably refers to the importer, not the manufacturer. A manufacturer's code or logo may be stamped on the frame's watertable. Post some clear, close-up photos of the barrel flats and watertable showing all marks thereon. A side view of the frame would also help. That information may help to identify the maker and year of manufacture.



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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2010 6:51 pm 
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Thank you VERY much for the response! I obviously have a lot of learnin' to do, if you please bare with me.
1- there is no exposed hammer.
2-It has "break " action, if that's what you mean by "folding"
3-What is the frames "watermark"?
4-What are the barrels "flats"?
I will try to get a few good photos as you suggest, but I'm not sure how to go about sending them in this forum. I know how to send photos to invidual e-mail addresses if that would work.

Again my sincere thanks, Wayne


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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2010 7:21 pm 
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Wayne,

Welcome to the forum :)

The first place to look on the forum is the thread at the top of the list of topics: 'Proof Marks/Date Codes/Choke/Steel shot: LOOK HERE FIRST' here is a link:

viewtopic.php?f=126&t=160159


Look especially at the part labled: 'Makers Marks and date codes'

That will show you the barrel flats and water table.

Warmly,

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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 12:01 am 
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I looked at those sites and I think I figured some things out.
1- 4 astrict looking things on the underside of each barrel indicates that it has 3/4 choke. there is also something that looks like "10.3" with those marks ,that I didn't find anything about.
2- There is a BP over an oval all inside of a shield looking thing, that is the same as the mark described as "smokeless powder proof breach loading smooth bore"
3-There is a mark that looks like an X inside of a shield with a helmet looking thing on top of that on the underside of the barrell, that looks like the mark for the Eibar proof house.
4- there is a P1, that I think means it was made in 1971.
5- There wqas one place that indicated that the last 2 numbers in the serial No. had something to with the date, but I couldn't make any sense of that. The serial No. (I think) is FN 151636
6- there were several marks and numbers that I didn't find on those sites-
A- the number 2 with something like crossed swords on it.
B- 1160 grams
C- the word "mundial" I think.
D-1100 Kg 5

Any other help would be very much appreciated!


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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 8:01 am 
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You got the choke right
You got the date of proof right
You got the proof house & type of proof right

1160 gramos means the barrels weigh 1160 grams
It was proof pressured at 1110 kilograms (KG)
Crossed swords with 2 in it signifies final proof
Mundial was likely the maker (If not the model). The list provided isn't all inclusive.
10.5 is the bore diameter in milimeters

Great detective work!


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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 11:31 am 
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Thanks, if you know of somewhere else I can poke around, I'll sure try {hs#


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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 12:48 pm 
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Wayne,

I think I can help a bit.

wayne peterson wrote:
The serial No. (I think) is FN 151636

The serial number is likely 151636 - 'FN' is the maker's code for Ignacio (or Gasper) Arizaga.

wayne peterson wrote:
C- the word "mundial" I think.

I suspect this was the retailer.

I have a Ignacio/Gasper Arizaga Arizaga 12 gauge SLNE marked exactly the same way:

Image

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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 1:23 pm 
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Kyrie, who tended to make a better quality gun, Gasper Arizaga or Florentina Arizaga?

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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 1:43 pm 
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That is all dependant upon the time period, from my investigation. Armas Ego (Florentino Arizaga) is considered a medium tier maker that does produce to top end pieces, currently. I think with these guns, it is the features of the particular gun that would be telling as I believe each were medium tier producing the wide spectrum of quality in their guns.


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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 5:33 pm 
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Goldhky wrote:
Kyrie, who tended to make a better quality gun, Gasper Arizaga or Florentina Arizaga?


In my opinion?

Comparing gun makers doesn’t make much sense to me.

Every Basque gun maker is capable of building magnificent shotguns, and has done so whenever a customer wanted one. Equally, every Basque gun maker can and has made the most basic of shotguns, whenever a customer wants enough of them to make it worth his while. That’s just the nature of the business – an order comes through the door and is filled. Over time just about all the Basque gun makers will have made more low cost guns than high cost guns. That means we will generally see more low cost guns from a given maker than high cost guns, purely because, generally speaking, each maker has made more low cost guns than high cost guns.

If I like a gun, and the price is right, I don’t care whose name is on it. Here's an example:

Image

That's a Horizon Model 700 SLNE. Never hear of Horizon? Me neither, until I accientially lucked into a Horizon Model 100 BLNE. Here are the barrel flats from the 100:

Image

I fell in love with the engraving pattern on the 100 :

Image

... and spent a year and a half looking for a Horizon side lock. Finally found it :-)

So that's where I'm coming from. I look at the gun first, and the maker's name last - if at all.

Warmly,

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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 5:41 pm 
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That engraving is much nicer than the stuff I have, very pretty. What does side lock mean? Where did you finally find the Horizon information?


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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 6:04 pm 
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Kyrie wrote:
Goldhky wrote:
Kyrie, who tended to make a better quality gun, Gasper Arizaga or Florentina Arizaga?


In my opinion?

Comparing gun makers doesn’t make much sense to me.

Every Basque gun maker is capable of building magnificent shotguns, and has done so whenever a customer wanted one. Equally, every Basque gun maker can and has made the most basic of shotguns, whenever a customer wants enough of them to make it worth his while. That’s just the nature of the business – an order comes through the door and is filled. Over time just about all the Basque gun makers will have made more low cost guns than high cost guns. That means we will generally see more low cost guns from a given maker than high cost guns, purely because, generally speaking, each maker has made more low cost guns than high cost guns.

If I like a gun, and the price is right, I don’t care whose name is on it. Here's an example:

Image

That's a Horizon Model 700 SLNE. Never hear of Horizon? Me neither, until I accientially lucked into a Horizon Model 100 BLNE. Here are the barrel flats from the 100:

Image

I fell in love with the engraving pattern on the 100 :

Image

... and spent a year and a half looking for a Horizon side lock. Finally found it :-)

So that's where I'm coming from. I look at the gun first, and the maker's name last - if at all.

Warmly,


Thanks, Kyrie and Chorizo. I understand and agree with what you are saying. I was just trying to place some of these manufacturers in order, so when I think I have found a deal I'll know if it really is a deal. I recently bought an old Jesus Irazaba (GIB) and refinished it. It is a plain looking gun, but seems well built. I've never heard of, nor seen another one of these guns. I can't find anything out on the manufacture either. But as Chorizo said "Another salvage that is now a very nice gun" I hope it does give me many years of shooting enjoyment.

Thanks again Guys.

Goldhky

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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 6:55 pm 
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wayne peterson wrote:
That engraving is much nicer than the stuff I have, very pretty. What does side lock mean? Where did you finally find the Horizon information?


I'm a real sucker for some kinds of engraving. Game scenes don't usually do much for me, but the really finely detailed stuff as on the Horizon is like crack :lol:

'Side lock' refers to the lock work (hammer, sear, springs) being attached to the side plate like so:

Image

A 'box lock' is a shotgun with the action hollowed out into kind of a box, into which the hammers, sears, and springs are mounted.

The side lock is the older design, the box lock the more recent, and easier (and less expensive) to make design.

In terms of information on the Horizon, I've found nothing beyond what is stamped on the gun; model number on the barrel and the required stamps on the barrel flats and water table. Here is the model stamp on the M100:

Image

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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 7:23 pm 
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Goldhky wrote:
I recently bought an old Jesus Irazaba (GIB) and refinished it. It is a plain looking gun, but seems well built. I've never heard of, nor seen another one of these guns. I can't find anything out on the manufacture either. But as Chorizo said "Another salvage that is now a very nice gun" I hope it does give me many years of shooting enjoyment.


I think you have put your finger squarely on what makes this a magical time for sufferers of SSD; we have the opportunity to see (and buy!) shotguns from the many small makers who never exported any guns. Your Jesus Irazaba is one example of such guns, I think the Ascension Zabala guns are another. The Horizon may be a third example. These are gun we would never have seen, probably never have known they existed, without spending some extended time in Spain. And I’d bet dollar to doughnuts that we’re seeing guns made by makers that are even unknown to Chorizo.

What a time of opportunity this is!

I completely enjoyed the book ‘Spanish Best’, and recommend it to anyone with any interest in Spanish shotguns. But it was one man’s look at a small slice of makers, taken over a long week end. The Basques have been making shotguns for over a hundred years! Hundreds, if not thousands, of small gun makers have come and gone, leaving behind only the guns they made as evidence they ever existed. “Spanish Best’ is like looking at a magnificent cathedral – through a keyhole.

When I finished reading ‘Spanish Best’ I felt I’d learned a lot. Little did I know then that I’d have a tour through a hundred years of Basque shotgun production – by frequenting on-line auction houses. What an education this last year and a half has been for me! I’ve had maybe forty or fifty Spanish shotguns go through my hands in that eighteen months and no two have been exactly alike.

Wow. Just, wow.

I keep discovering little things that leave me gap jawed with wonder. Purely as just one example, on a VS SLE gun I found lock washers under the side lock retaining screws. These lock washers were crenellated. Corresponding crenellations had been cut into the underside of the heads of the side lock retaining screws, and into the bottom of the wells in the side plates into which the screw head were recessed. My first clue that I was about to discover something extraordinary was a ‘click, click, click’ as I loosened the first side lock retaining screw – I could feel the lock washer was unlocking!

For a guy with an advanced case of SSD, this is like discovering a fellow doesn’t have to die to get to heaven :shock:

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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 8:06 pm 
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Unfortunately, it was "bad form" to break a fellow's shotgun down to see what they were using even though I was dying to do so. I looked at lots of shotguns while I was there, but unfortunately the internet, Guardia Civil auctions and trading guns just wasn't allowed or around then so there was no ability to cruise the net and the only way to see guns was to search the gun stores.

The guns I did see used had lots of pitting at the throat from corrosive ammo and it was just recently post DIARM so all of the little makers had just vanished.

I did visit Eibar and Eligobar frequently and visited the parts makers and barrel makers as well as some of the known houses in my off time while in the area.

Most of what I learned was exactly what Kyrie has said. Look at the gun and not the name. If the gun interests you, is the right price and has the features you want, go for it. We are never going to get an opportunity like this again to buy little know maker's quality Spanish guns for so cheap.

I am different in my selection than Kyrie is. I look for function and for the type of form that I remember from my youth. Game scenes are fine with me and light engraving appeals to me. Bright silver/chrome receivers do not appeal to me. Heavy engraving doesn't really do it for me, but I won't turn my nose up if it has the features I want.

I will re-emphasize a point. I just bought three quality pieces, two of them side locks, one of them an ejector gun and all of them requiring nothing more than refinish work on the stocks and some TLC on the metal for $1,000 for the lot after paying fees, refinish costs, shipping and purchase price.

If you told me that 3 years ago, I would have laughed in your face.


Last edited by chorizo on Mon Mar 22, 2010 8:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 8:18 pm 
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Kyrie wrote:
Goldhky wrote:
I recently bought an old Jesus Irazaba (GIB) and refinished it. It is a plain looking gun, but seems well built. I've never heard of, nor seen another one of these guns. I can't find anything out on the manufacture either. But as Chorizo said "Another salvage that is now a very nice gun" I hope it does give me many years of shooting enjoyment.


I think you have put your finger squarely on what makes this a magical time for sufferers of SSD; we have the opportunity to see (and buy!) shotguns from the many small makers who never exported any guns. Your Jesus Irazaba is one example of such guns, I think the Ascension Zabala guns are another. The Horizon may be a third example. These are gun we would never have seen, probably never have known they existed, without spending some extended time in Spain. And I’d bet dollar to doughnuts that we’re seeing guns made by makers that are even unknown to Chorizo.

What a time of opportunity this is!

I completely enjoyed the book ‘Spanish Best’, and recommend it to anyone with any interest in Spanish shotguns. But it was one man’s look at a small slice of makers, taken over a long week end. The Basques have been making shotguns for over a hundred years! Hundreds, if not thousands, of small gun makers have come and gone, leaving behind only the guns they made as evidence they ever existed. “Spanish Best’ is like looking at a magnificent cathedral – through a keyhole.

When I finished reading ‘Spanish Best’ I felt I’d learned a lot. Little did I know then that I’d have a tour through a hundred years of Basque shotgun production – by frequenting on-line auction houses. What an education this last year and a half has been for me! I’ve had maybe forty or fifty Spanish shotguns go through my hands in that eighteen months and no two have been exactly alike.

Wow. Just, wow.

I keep discovering little things that leave me gap jawed with wonder. Purely as just one example, on a VS SLE gun I found lock washers under the side lock retaining screws. These lock washers were crenellated. Corresponding crenellations had been cut into the underside of the heads of the side lock retaining screws, and into the bottom of the wells in the side plates into which the screw head were recessed. My first clue that I was about to discover something extraordinary was a ‘click, click, click’ as I loosened the first side lock retaining screw – I could feel the lock washer was unlocking!

For a guy with an advanced case of SSD, this is like discovering a fellow doesn’t have to die to get to heaven :shock:


Excellent post Kyrie. I too have been infected by SSD. Fortunately or unfortunatly I am late to the party. I have seen many nice guns proudly displyed on this site, and I yearn to have more myself.

I have a very weak immune system to foreign disease. When the fever set in, I had to have one, but I could not leave the store with just one. I still have a couple old "Salvages" to feed this disease.

Thanks as always for your insight and honest input.

Goldhky

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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 8:30 pm 
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Goldhky, Kyrie and a couple of others have the ability to visit the sellers with most of the current imports for sale.

It is a good thing I don't live close by as I would be digging through their stock on a weekly basis taking the cream off the top. I would also be broke!


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 Post subject: Re: spanish shotguns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 8:35 pm 
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chorizo wrote:
Goldhky, Kyrie and a couple of others have the ability to visit the sellers with most of the current imports for sale.

It is a good thing I don't live close by as I would be digging through their stock on a weekly basis taking the cream off the top. I would also be broke!


Chorizo, the invitation is there. You can come visit anytime you please. It's just a short drive from 3 major airports.

Goldhky



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