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Shotgun Restoration?

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I got my grandfathers shotgun and its not in bad shape. The varnish on the stock is a little worn and the metal could use a little love, not rusty just needs reblueing. Its a remington 1187 16 gauge. Any one have any clue what i'd be looking at to have it restored?
 

swampy

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Are you planning on shooting it or hanging in a museum? What you call wear sounds like character to me. Look at the wear on the stock and the metal and reflect on the times your grandpa drew that gun up to his shoulder, the deer, doves, or pheasants that appeared at the end of that barrel. The chill he felt when the cold stock touched his cheek. The pride he felt the day he walked out of the gun shop with his new Remington cradled in his arms. Why would you want to wipe those memories off such a storied piece of your grandfathers life? Though you may never know the details of every nick,scratch or dulled spot on the finish you can touch them knowing that those are memories your grandfather is sharing with you. It sounds like he's left you a little room to add your own memories to pass along some day.
 
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Are you planning on shooting it or hanging in a museum? What you call wear sounds like character to me. Look at the wear on the stock and the metal and reflect on the times your grandpa drew that gun up to his shoulder, the deer, doves, or pheasants that appeared at the end of that barrel. The chill he felt when the cold stock touched his cheek. The pride he felt the day he walked out of the gun shop with his new Remington cradled in his arms. Why would you want to wipe those memories off such a storied piece of your grandfathers life? Though you may never know the details of every nick,scratch or dulled spot on the finish you can touch them knowing that those are memories your grandfather is sharing with you. It sounds like he's left you a little room to add your own memories to pass along some day.

+1 Don't restore it. If you want something pretty, go buy a new one. If you want your Grandfather's gun, then oil it up and go shoot something.
I have my Grandfather's 16ga 870, only has about 20% of the blue and the wood is still in good shape, only gets taken out on special occasions(when I hunt his old spot). Every time I drop a deer with it I think of him.
 
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MisterHappy

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Are you planning on shooting it or hanging in a museum? What you call wear sounds like character to me. Look at the wear on the stock and the metal and reflect on the times your grandpa drew that gun up to his shoulder, the deer, doves, or pheasants that appeared at the end of that barrel. The chill he felt when the cold stock touched his cheek. The pride he felt the day he walked out of the gun shop with his new Remington cradled in his arms. Why would you want to wipe those memories off such a storied piece of your grandfathers life? Though you may never know the details of every nick,scratch or dulled spot on the finish you can touch them knowing that those are memories your grandfather is sharing with you. It sounds like he's left you a little room to add your own memories to pass along some day.

+1 for Eloquence.

I agree...leave it alone...love it....add to it. The gun HAS received a little love....that where the "wear" comes from!

If you "restore" it, you'll acutally be taking a piece of your family's history, and erasing part of it.

What you need to do is add to its history, and pass it along to your kid. There are few physical objects that have the durability to be used, and passed down over the generations.


Enjoy!
 

Woodstock

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I have a few old-timers from family and old friends. I wish there were a few more. All the wear and tear represents character and memories, and won't be erased on my watch. I say oil it up and go hunting. They made the 11-87 in 16 gauge?
 

MisterHappy

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The British Army had some sporting rifles that had been used in military service as sniper (or orher special purpose) rifles, and was going to put them in a museum.

They sent them back to the maker (Holland & Holland? - not sure, but a big name....) and they said that they'd mechanically check them, but the dings, gouges, scrapes and bumps were "Battle scars, honorably earned," and would not be touched.

At least they had an appreciation for history....
 
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Funny this comes up today.
I was asked recently to do some "bring back" to a few shotguns a co-worker had inhereted from his recently deceased and beloved father. Nothing big-a Fox 20 ga double, a 20ga H&R single and Winchester pump gun. He's been in GA the last 2 weeks on business. They had been stored in cases for some years now. The single was pretty well pitted on the side that leaned into the foam (I assume) and was the first I opened up. All the wood was removed to get at what I knew would be under there. Lo and behold was a wad of grass,seeds, etc under the hinge. I carefully removed all of it and put it in a bit of plastic wrap. I took a picture of it and sent to my friend. When I reassembled the gun, I put the bits in the stock bolt hole under the buttplate so he and his father can continue to make memories together.

Every mark is a memory.
 
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It's probably an 1100 - In 16ga. it could be on a 12ga frame. You may even have a model 11 which has the humpback - I suspect this is the case as the 1100's were not so popular in 16ga.

Post up a pic and let us see how bad the condition is. If your goal is to protect the wood, then I would use stripper to take off the old finish and use tung oil/spar varnish 50/50 mix as a protection - keep in mind you'll need to hand apply the finish at least once a year or more depending on use.

Congrats on the inheritance
 

MisterHappy

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. All the wood was removed to get at what I knew would be under there. Lo and behold was a wad of grass,seeds, etc under the hinge. I carefully removed all of it and put it in a bit of plastic wrap. I took a picture of it and sent to my friend. When I reassembled the gun, I put the bits in the stock bolt hole under the buttplate so he and his father can continue to make memories together.

Every mark is a memory.

NICE touch putting the seeds, etc. back!

+1 !
 
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Another vote for leaving it as is. I have a Winchester model 94 30-30 lever gun (dated SN from 1964) that my grandfather gave me. When I received it the majority of the metal was covered in rust. The only restoration I did to the gun was to personally take it down and remove all the rust, clear the barrel, and oil it up. I replaced none of the original parts. The receiver is missing some bluing, but I wouldn't change anything about it. Every now and then I take it to the range and have a blast. Hopefully one day I will have the privilege of passing it along, scuff marks and all.

As previously mentioned by others, if you are looking for a new gun, get a new gun. Shotguns are usually relatively inexpensive compared to other firearms. This way you can hold onto something that will be more than just a gun.
 
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Thanks for the input guys. I wanted to restore it cause its been thru a couple family members hands left in cold storage for a few years. When me and grampa used to shoot it it was in pristine condition. He always took really good care of his stuff. If he could see it now he'd be pissed.
 
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Leave it.
Clean it and get it in the best condition you can short of restoration.
We have an old Model 94 Winchester in 25-35 that my late father in laws' uncle use don the railroad back in western PA around WWI.
I can imangine how many deer that old lever action has put on the table.
My father in law got it as a kid during the Deprssion when it was their #1 source of meat on the table.
It looks like h3ll but every now and then I take it out for PA doe season.
I hope my 17 year old gets his 1st deer with it this year.
 
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