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Leader Sidelock Help, Please

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by Hawk, Jul 2, 2005.

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  1. Hawk

    Hawk Member

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    My local gun dealer just put something puzzling on the rack: A SxS double 12 sidelock marked "Leader" on left barrel. I believe it's a real sidelock 'cuz the stock is busted at the right-upper tang area and it looks to my untrained eye like the guts are showing.

    Barrels are brown, reciever is roughly the same brown as the barrels - doesn't look like case color or something (based on my limited experience) that could have been easily done to case color. The chokes are a mystery. The stock is uncheckered. It's tight as a drum. The splinter forearm is really little - can't help grabbing the barrels when it's mounted although (Gawd help me) it's a rare example of something that "FITS".

    It's 250.00 and the barrels are less than 30" - looks like something that Boyd's plus a lot of time could turn into a shooter. Has anybody heard of a "Leader"? It looks like an L.C. Smith copy. I'll likely go for it unless somebody knows of a "Leader" that was a POS L.C. Smith copy. It looks like it needs some love.

    But I'd hate to spend 250.00 on a 2 year old 99.00 gun that looks like an old sidelock to this duffer, thus this posting...

    TIA

    :)
     
  2. Dave McCracken

    Dave McCracken Moderator In Memoriam

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    Gotta hunch it's a Crescent. They were inexpensive when new, and came in both sidelock and boxlock actions. Crescent followed common practice at the time and put any name a bulk customer wanted on their products.

    Or, it's Belgian. While many good shotguns were made and are made there, many of the worst now seen are also.

    Baker ( A fine maker) did make sidelocks with Leader as a model, but they are very rare.

    I'm not sure it's worth $250. Crescents were for occasional use, not as target mainstays. Sears are probably soft and are either worn or will wear quickly past safe. Belgians are not for shooting, period.

    Unless you really want a project shotgun, pass on this.

    Alas, I've run across junkers that did fit. Another Zen lesson......
     
  3. Hawk

    Hawk Member

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    Thanks - that's what I needed.

    I've got sufficient project guns as it is.
     
  4. JohnBT

    JohnBT Member

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    Leader Gun Company - Trade name used by the H. D. Folsom Arms Co. on shotguns made for the Charles Williams Stores, Inc. of New York.

    - Standard Catalog of Firearms

    Folsom Arms Co. - Large distributor of shotguns produced by Crescent. Folsom owned and later sold Crescent (and Davis Warner, and Baker) to Savage around 1930.
     
  5. Jagermeister

    Jagermeister Moderator In Memoriam

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    Dave Mc is also Correct.

    Leader was made by Crescent and H&D Folsom under that trade name for the same company from 1905-1925 Sending info on Crescent by separate email


    JM
     
  6. Hawk

    Hawk Member

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    Thanks - got the stuff.

    The Crescent / Leader looked like pics I'd seen of L.C. Smiths. I gather that those similarities are mostly superficial.

    I notice that one of the Crescent's trade brands was "Peerless". So wonder the Remington effort that would follow had an uphill struggle. ;)
     
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