The gun world is filled up with “usual” stuff. Yet, this Pedersoli side-by-side flintlock shotgun represents something new that is also “elegantly” very, very old
In a world where gun manufacturers wrestle to bring forward the latest, hottest, modern-est gun, it requires a lot of balls, chutzpah and romanticism to bring back to the market something like this latest entry in the already thriving Pedersoli muzzleloading catalogue: a flintlock double barrelled shotgun…
We have not been so lucky to test-shoot this beauty in the field, so we will not get in too many details in describing it and will limit ourselves to what we can see.
Before going any further, if wood to metal fit on the gun in the pictures seems to be sub-par compared to what Pedersoli has us accustomed to, it’s because it is… but I believe it’s fully excused considering that this is a pre-series gun. And a hell of a prototype at that, showcasing a gun with an exceedingly elegant design.
The timed screws on the tang and buttplate, for example, are really a touch of class rarely seen on current production guns. The stock is straight, with the trigger guard flowing on to form a rest for the fingers. The trigger mechanism couldn’t be other than a double trigger.
Even if a little bit “cheap” in terms of design, at least for a gun of this kind – a flintlock double - the locks design is the oldest, absolutely reliable and multi-proven one used by Pedersoli since the ‘70s: the locks show a good geometry, with correct angle between flint, frizzen and touch-holes located at their proper height above the pan’s floor.
Pedersoli double barrel flintlock shotgun
Chokes: modified cylinder
Barrel lenght: 70 cm / 27,5"
Overall lenght: 111 cm / 43,7"
Weight: 3,5 kg / 7.7 lbs
The pans have an interesting design in their own right, having a wide, flat edge (instead of a narrow, rounded one) that makes me ready to bet that, with a smear of grease and taking care of carrying the gun slung locks down, it is a sure-fire lock even in rainy days.
The relevant information are written on the left side of the barrels and I believe that putting the load on the barrel is a nice practical touch but, given the type of gun, I would have preferred everything being impressed on the underside, hidden by the handguard.
There is obviously no latch lever, nor any safety, the only safety being the hammers half-cock.
The only sighting device provided is a brass doll-head front sight at the end of barrels which are fairly shorter than those of most XVIII century fowling pieces. I believe that pointability and ease of carry have taken precedence over sheer ballistic performance, which would have required a much longer and unwieldy gun.
The barrels are internally chromed. The choice of barrel gauge is in style with the elegance of the gun: instead of going for the usual 12, Pedersoli opted for a finer, lighter 20 gauge with a modified cylinder choke. After all, if you are up to the challenge of hunting with a flintlock, you can very well go the whole nine yards and do it with a well-proportioned gun.
Moreover, the polished steel buttplate does nothing to mitigate the gun’s recoil.
Now, all one needs is a frock coat, a pair of well-greased leather boots and a tricorn. Even if, told this way, it does not allow you to imagine how much pleasant and historically interesting it would be to go hunting with a double barrel “flintlock” shotgun…