Kick the conventions
Regardless of the gun’s brand, all conventional breakaction guns have certain similarites. However, has anyone dared to create a gun that doesn’t follow to convention?
e all know what a conventional breakaction side-by-side or over-and-under looks like, don’t we? It doesn’t matter whether the gun is a Baikal or a London-best Boss, there are certain similarities which we expect to find, whatever the gun’s worth.
So, has anyone dared to kick the conventions and apply some independent thinking on how a gun should be designed? Of course they have, and the first gunmaker that springs to mind is
Regis Darne. Needless to say for a man
Wwhose invention was thought of as cranky by some and a work of genius by others, he was French. Also needless to say, he founded his company in the French capital of gunmaking, Saint Etienne.
Whenever I think of Darne’s side-by-side shotgun, I also think of the Citroen DS19 of the 1950s – an incredibly cranky car to drive, but also one designed with a strange kind of logic which set it apart from anything else in the world at the time.
The incredible thing about Darne’s shotgun is that, although on a casual glance, it looks as if it ought to break for loading and the removal of spent cartridge cases, it doesn’t. Instead, when you pull back on two ear-like projections located where the top lever is normally found, the breech block unlocks itself from