Full view of TOZ-34 from Joh Springer auction
Без рубрики, gunmaking, Russian Hunting Shotguns

Presentation TOZ-34 on Auction

The next Joh. Springer’s Erben auction in Vienna has for sale this TOZ-34 of the highest possible grade (link).

Right-hand side of TOZ-34 from Joh Springer's Erben

The auction house doesn’t quote the production year, but I believe it was made in the late 1980s, most likely 1986, on the old (pre-1974) type receiver without the barrel disengagement lever on the right side. This is quite typical: TOZ custom shop used old type receivers well into the 1990s.

This is definitely a one-off gun, which is evidenced also by irregular serial number. I would expect the last four digits to be the proper number of the gun in the rough, with “86” added later when the gun was finished. However, in this case the “M” would denote the grade («Ш» for custom, «П» for Presentation, and «С» for Souvenir), and I’m not aware of a grade that started with “M”. This could be a minor interpretation error – or my lack of knowledge (which is deeper that may appear in the mirror of this blog).

left-hand side of the action

Some people believe that this level of embellishments becomes this essentially mass-made gun as a saddle becomes a cow, to quote a Russian saying. Others would say that it is inappropriate for any hunting guns, because it misses the borders of functionality by a large margin. I will not argue with either. However, early TOZ-34 are well-handling and well-made weapons, and in my opinion meet the definition of “fine” in the broad sense. And this level of decoration, in both subject and execution, is quite typical of Presentation / Souvenir grade hunting guns from TOZ.

Thus, a collector with East European tastes is well advised to check this gun out. Provided you find the price adequate (1,500 Euro), but I’m no judge here.

(UPD: the gun sold for 1,500 Euro)

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