Russian Hunting Shotguns

Izh-5, a.k.a. Iver Johnson.

Izh-5 1931 vintage. Photo (c) Hanter Seb / www.guns.ru

Izh-5 1931 vintage. Photo (c) Hanter Seb / http://www.guns.ru

Before the WWI, Petrov’s Manufacture in Izhevsk sold a copy of Iver Johnson single shot. Unfortunately, during the Civil War (1917-1921) the archives of the firm were lost, so it is now difficult to tell whether Petrov’s made or retailed this gun (or both), and from what year. The earliest sample known to me dates to 1900.

Iver Johnson by Petrov's. Photo (c) Major Merkel.

Iver Johnson by Petrov’s. Photo (c) Major Merkel.

This sample, unfortunately, no longer exists: the gun in question apparently failed to be properly registered in 1976, and, like many such guns, fell in bad hands – someone made a sawed-off ‘handgun’ out of it. Then it was seized by the police, and according to the law had to be destroyed; however, a police officer who prefers to be known as Major Merkel was kind enough to take and provide this photograph.

After the Civil War the former Crown Arsenal was merged with nationalized private gun works and the production of the single shot was continued (or started, if Petrov’s only had their guns made by Iver Johnson. This is not clear at present). In the 1920s the gun was known under the curious name of “Izhevsk-Johnson”, as can be seen on this 1927 sample.

"Izhevsk-Johnson". Photo (c) кантур / www.guns.ru

“Izhevsk-Johnson”. Photo (c) кантур / http://www.guns.ru

Since 1930s the gun suffered a number of improvements, mostly intended to reduce the production costs, and got a new name – Izh-5. Under this name it was made by all three major hunting gun makers of the time – in Izhevsk, Tula and Zlatoust. The production continued until 1948, and according to some sources – until 1952.

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Hunting in Russia

In September 2015 Issue of Russian Hunting Magazine.

Each issue of Russian Hunting Magazine contains condensed English translations of selected articles. In September 2015, those include Aleksei Waisman’s story of the Saiga, the only European species of antelope, brought to near extinction by poaching for its antlers (used in traditional Chinese medicine). On a more positive note, Dmitry Karmanov tells a few anecdotes from his bird hunting trip to the South of Russia, hunting grey partridge and pheasant over his Brittany, Muse.
rhm today 15-9 p138 rhm 15-9 p139

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Russian Hunting Shotguns

Magazine Combination Guns.

No, that’s neither a misprint nor an oxymoron. This is an accurate description of a few models developed by TsKIB (Central R&D Bureau for Sporting Guns, Tula, Russia) for the sake of professional fur hunters. MTs 29The idea was that trappers needed a combination gun, but a combination gun is by definition two single shots in one stock. What do you do if you want a quick follow-up shot with the same caliber? A pack of young designers were let loose on the problem, and here are some of the solutions they came up with: Continue reading

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