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(Forum Home)--->(Help!?!)--->(How do I know if my gun had a damascus barrel? Buyer is unhappy.)
Thread Admin: OutlawSS (0-0-0) (Last 10 Posts) Posted: 01/16/2007 at 21:49:04
Total Posts: 13
Thread Title: "How do I know if my gun had a damascus barrel? Buyer is unhappy."
(no avatar) I sold a WW Greener on auction #7815111. The man bought it quickly on the buy it now option.He even sent me extra money to overnight the gun to Calif. His complaint is as follows: "Hi Sherri, I got the Greener today but I^m not happy with the gun. The barrel is damascus and the action is anything but tight. Since Aution arms has a three day inspection period. I am going to send the gun back. Casey" ================================================= I looked closely at the barrel and saw no sign of spiraling or anything but smooth metal.I did some research on the internet and saw nothing to back-up the fact that my Greener had a damascus barrel- it was a 12 guage side by side shotgun from the late 1800's. Also, I opened and closed the gun several times and it had no play. I'm not sure what to do. This is the only correspondance I've gotten. Do I have to accept the gun back if he is making these things up? I tried my best to be as truthful as possible listing this gun. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you, Sherri
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Former Seller: Joes Custom Guns(219-1-1) Post#1 - Posted: 01/17/2007 at 01:21:04
(no avatar) Yes you must take the gun back,AA rule states that he can return within 3days for any reason

One word of advice if he gives you negative feedback on your first sale then AA can DISABLE YOU., I would be very carful how I delt with him

Thread Admin: OutlawSS(0-0-0) Post#2 - Posted: 01/17/2007 at 04:00:22
(no avatar) It also states that he has to call me- he hasn't even tried. Just the hasty email the second he got the gun. But I guess you have to deal with all types of folks here. I didn't do anything wrong. Followed everything asked of me to a tee. Thank you anyway.

Seller: Elitist(83-0-0) Post#3 - Posted: 01/17/2007 at 17:59:09
Elitist Have it X-rayed. That will tell you if it's Damascus or not. I don't know when Greener started using bored barrels, but they likely stuck with twist barrels longer than a lot of other makers: the Old Man was a fanatic on the subject of barrels and had contempt for anyone's but his own. The used of bored barrels began roughly around 1885-1890, but plenty of makers used twist barrels well after that, and for a while only low-end guns used the bored barrels: twist was considered superior. A gunmaker like Greener catered to a high-end trade and no doubt if someone wanted twist barrels on his gun they would have obliged him if they could. But an X-ray will show you the welds (really, just one long spiral weld) and settle the question.

As to loose on the face: very possibly it is after all these years. If you can put a sheet of onionsking paper in front of the standing breech and still close the gun, it's loose. A good gunsmith who knows these old doubles well can tighten it up, and for a Greener it's worth doing it right. You might want to send it back to Greener to have it done: they're back in business.

Seller: jbc(107-0-1) Post#4 - Posted: 01/17/2007 at 18:54:54
(no avatar) Is it not true also that the buyer has to pay the shipping both ways. In other words the seller only has to refund back the selling price? And make sure the gun wasn't tampered with.

Former Seller: axolotl(111-0-0) Post#5 - Posted: 01/17/2007 at 20:16:42
axolotl OutlawSS; please don`t nitpick about the phone call in three days. You only have control of your actions, not his. AA says he can send it back within 3 days. Take it back. On finely finished guns probably the only place you can see damascus is under the forearm and sometimes you can`t spot it even then. But look there and see if you can detect the spirals. If not do as Elitist`s says and have it x-rayed. Briley in Houston amongst others can do it for you. axolotl

Seller: AIC(145-0-0) Post#6 - Posted: 01/17/2007 at 20:47:26
AIC OutlawSS, It is very possable that it has damascus barrels and even quite likly. I have an old 12ga double with damascus barrels made in 1902, the finish on it is very good with very little blueing wear, it is almost impossible to see that it has damascus barrels, but for the only small spot of wear in the blueing where the blueing penitrated deeper along the welds. I think on an old shotguns like that I would rather have damascus barrels. However buyers have 3 days to send guns back and if they come back in the same condition they were sent out in, we sellers have to send their money back to them, and the buyer needs no reason at all.

Seller: AA-bob(1-0-0) Post#7 - Posted: 01/18/2007 at 13:21:55
AA-bob Damascus barrels were made by forge welding stacks of little square steel and iron rods together and then folding them and re-welding in special ways into flat bar to create the beautiful patterns of layers you see in them.

These patterns show up since the steel and iron oxidize in different ways.

The resulting patterned steel/iron bar was then either spiral or flat forge welded around a mandrel to create a Barrel. One way to tell if you have Damascus steel is to etch a small discreet area (say under the forearm) with a drop of nitric acid. The acid will etch the steel and iron layers at different rates and the Damascus pattern will be evident. Damascus barrels have a fundamental problem and this led to their demise. Other than being much more expensive to produce than fluid steel barrels, the boundary layers between the iron and steel might not weld perfectly or include some impurities (slag, carbon)in the form of an inclusion. These poor welds and inclusions weakened the barrel and over time and with use (even when originally proofed properly) could and would fail.

Additionally, poor maintenance could/does allow rusting to form easily in the iron at the boundary layer between the iron and steel (the dissimilar metal also causing electrolysis problems) which once started is very difficult to arrest. These eventually would lead to pits, weakening the barrel, with ultimate failure.

Former Seller: Gun nut Bob(63-0-0) Post#8 - Posted: 01/20/2007 at 08:08:34
(no avatar) While it is possible for damascus steel to have flaws, the ones made for smokeless powder were nitro proofed and as heavy as most of them were made that were made to be nitro proofed, there is not all that much danger with them.

However they do have more potentual of flaws then fluid steel or bored steel barrels and why be risking these fine old guns by shooting them???????

The real culprit in the demise of damascus steel shot gun barrels were reloadable brass shotgun shells, which had existed all during the black powder era and had not created any problems because of the burning curve of black powder.

When smokeless shotgun powder, which are mostly black in color, came along the burning curve is much sharper. In brass shotgun shells there is no real good way of securing the load in them without crimping them. If they are crimped, it rapidly destroys a brass shotgun shell. So when the right barrel was fired, the recoil often ejected the load from the brass shotgun shell in the left barrel. Then when the left barrel was fired, the shot charge acted like a plugged barrel and burst the barrel. All the double barrel shotguns that I have seen burst barrels on, it is always the left barrel that burst. Both fluid steel and damascus. The manufactures saw the potentual for selling a lot of new shotguns, so all damascus barels were condemned. Both black powder damascus and nitro proofed damascus. I agree with the manufacture, because the thumb you save just might be your own and don't shoot these old guns.

Former Seller: OLD RATTLER(134-0-0) Post#9 - Posted: 01/20/2007 at 08:24:18
(no avatar) G.N.B. ; You may have taught me something, because, I never knew that any Damascus barrels were Nitro Proofed. Were they marked as Nitro Proofed ?

Seller: Elitist(83-0-0) Post#10 - Posted: 01/20/2007 at 09:36:44
Elitist It's fairly common for twist steel barrels to be nitro proofed, in the UK at least. HOWEVER, their standard loads are milder than ours. Americans like big sot charges and high velocity, the typical UK shooter is satisfied with a 2-1/2" sheel with 7/8 ounce of shot moving at a leisurely 1100 fps. I'd be very, very careful about using American shotshells in any twist barrel, nitro proofed or not, and would nevr, ever, use the heavy stuff.

The safest thing to do if you have one of these beautiful old guns and want to shoot it is to have the barrels sleeved. Briley does this but there are other companies who can offer the service and it's something any competent gunsmith who knows about double guns can handle.

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