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(Continued from page 61) pattern by finding a shot which doesn't give such high percentages; use a rolled crimp, i{ you obtained your highest pattern with a folded crimp; or drop down to lighter shot charges and increase shot size.

Size V/-1 shot have 350 pellets to the ounce. Tf you used No. 7 shot you would have 14 per cent less pattern than when using one ounce loads of IV-i size shot. Quite often, testing handloads at the pattern board, you find some certain shot sizes giving beautiful open patterns, with the gun throwing much less than the designated choke. In 20 gauges, 1 have seldom found one giving high count patterns with number 8 shot. If the full choke barrels prints 70 per cent patterns with No. 7Ms, with No. 8 shot I usually get 55-60 per cent. Number 8 shot go 410 to the ounce, but by cutting down to % ounce in the 20 gauge, and getting 55-60 per cent patterns with my full choke barrel, and 45 per cent with my modified barrel, it makes an excellent snipe load, unless I'm shooting during stormy weather. Then these light shot drift too much even at 30-35 yards.

individual gull uses belter than others, indicated by its performance with one particular shot size? In other words, if your gun produces 75 per cent patterns with number 6 shot, can you reasonably expect it to also handle 2s. 4s. 7'/4s? Jf it handles No. 5 shut, is lhat any indication that it will also handle .'is or 7s? My pattern board says no, but with a qualification. 1 have yet to see any shotgun which gave a 75 or higher per cent pattern with number 6s from a full choked barrel that didn't also handle both 7s and 7V4 sizes. But usually if it gives above 75 per cent pattern with 6s. it will not go much above 70 per cent with 2s and 4s. It is overchoked for the larger size shot. Quite oflcn I have found the modified barrel that throws 60 per cent patterns of 7-6 shot, going much higher with 2. 3, 4 shot than the full choked barrel.

When handloading with wildfowling in mind, using 2s, 3s, 4s. you shouldn't be surprised to lind the chokes of your double gun reversed, in range effectiveness. I have two such guns in niy rack.

shotgun is almost a law unto itself when it comes to getting its best shooting potential afield. But with a good pattern hoard, lime, and components for handload-ing. any shotgun performance can be improved. The goal in all field shooting is balanced loads, critically evaluated from the


(Continued from page 27)

seen the San Martin revolvers?" I was greatly astonished, this being the first time I had heard of them. Knowing San Martin died in 1850, I started to ask if they were Palerson Colts? John went on, "I know everything you want to tell me—they're real, though, and can be seen in the shop of X. Go there and have a look; then give me your opinion .. ." and he hung up. Thinking of these guns, I kept wondering—could they be Paterson Colts of the 1830s, or even Walkers?

But when I finally got to the shop, X told me they had been there, a pair of Colt revolvers, and the price was equal to about S500, but nobody had wanted them so the owner took them away again. He refused to give me the name of the owner. I told John of the bad luck, but he replied "No matter— the guns haven't been sold. They'll turn up again." And they did, some months later, this time in a fashionable store in Buenos Aires' most exclusive shopping district, the Calle Florida. But my bad luck still held— when I went there after John's call, the owner had come and taken them away a short time before. But this storekeeper obligingly gave me the name of the owner and off I went the same evening to see him. lie lived in one of the best quarters of the city, in a fine apartment. When I told him I wished to see the revolvers, he was very nice about it, and brought out a plain pine box I knew at once was not a Colt pistol case.

The two guns inside were beautiful and, what's pretty rare with antique guns in Argentina, well preserved, too. Most of the original bluing was present, and the ivory grips were beautifully carved with the coat of arms of Peru. The butt of each grip was inscribed gexkkal j. rk san martin. They were fine guns. Only a few little things were wrong with them. They were Army Colts of the 1860 model, and San Martin had died in 1850. Their 8" barrels had been cut short to approximately six inches, making handsome short-barrel pistols, but not exactly original. I was clearly in the presence of two most interesting fakes, and said so. The owner did not flare up in anger, as I had momentarily expected. He took up a letter from his desk, in which the Colt company stated the photo of these guns sent to them clearly showed them to be 1860 Colts.

As I looked at him in astonishment, he smiled and said, "You only confirmed what Colt had already told me." We chatted a while longer, and he told me the tradition was that these guns had been given by Peruvian President General Castillo to San Martin in his office as Ex-Protector of Peru, while in exile in France. We didn't discuss further my buying the guns. When I reported the interview to John the next day he agreed with me that they were fakes. A couple of years after, John left Argentina to return to the States. But he kept thinking of the 1860 Colts.

He had concluded that in spite of their false markings, the condition and general rarity of such a pair made them worth buying and he asked me to look into it. I again wrote to the owner and received a reply that really shocked me. He stated the revolvers were no longer for sale, and he had decided to make a present of the "San Martin revolvers" to "our beloved President, Peron, to increase the slock of San Martin relics in the possession of the country." What a rascal! Knowing the story of the guns, and yet he would go to such an extreme. What favor he expected to get from such a gift, I do not know. Except for the Presidente of the Musco San Martiniano and the Argentine Historical Museum, nobody really knew the story, so the guns passed to Peron unrecognized as fraudulent. So now 1 had a conscience problem—should 1 notify the President that the guns never belonged to San Martin, and what would happen if I did? I decided to consult with a friend who was a judge and, while we were consulting I things move slowly in Argentina) the revolution broke out and Peron disappeared. I am told that later in an exhibition of per-


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