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French Shotgun

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by Dan Henon, Mar 9, 2008.

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  1. Dan Henon

    Dan Henon Member

    Mar 9, 2008
    Need help to determine origin of a double barrel 12 ga side by side shotgun that was brought home in 1945 by my father. It has the following markings: ACIER COMPRIME with three stars underneath; CANON TANGET ( the first letter of tanget looks like an inverted L); M-T inside of an oval; F8C'E; ACIER DE SURETE; single crown over PT; a barrel length of 648 mm (I think); a symbol that appears to be crossed branches with a crown in top center and plus (+) signs left, right and bottom; symbol is followed by STETIENNE 18.3; symbol and lettering is on both barrels; CHOKE RECTIFIE; there is also a symbol comprised of a circle, an I at top, three triangles at bottom and a crescent on each side.

    Any information on this will be helpful.
  2. Dave McCracken

    Dave McCracken Moderator In Memoriam

    Dec 20, 2002
    Welcome, Dan.

    I'm no expert but a couple things....

    Acier means Steel.

    St Etienne is the town where the French Armory and Proof House is located. A lot of gun makers are located there.

    Your SxS is almost certainly chambered for the 2 1/2" shell. You didn't say, but I bet it's a boxlock with a straight grip, splinter forend and two triggers. Bet it's also choked on the tight side and weighs around 6.5 lbs.

    French shotguns are a vast and unknown territory. Lots of no named shotguns are out there, made by obscure makers or completely unmarked.

    The good news, most of these make fine shooters with proper ammo or if the chambers can be lengthened. Not all can.

    As with all old shotguns, a trip to see Mr Gunsmith is in order.

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