American Hunter - June 2014 - 66

h

Stoeger Longfowler
By David Draper

I

've long admired double guns from
afar, this distance being best for both
my pocketbook and the gun itself. I'm
naturally hard on gear, and the very
thought of handling a fine double
gives me a nervous tic as I assume I'll do
something to damage it. Taking one afield
is almost unthinkable, especially waterfowling where I generally find myself lying
out in a muddy field for geese or banging
around a makeshift duck blind. So acquiring a double gun, though it is every serious
shotgunner's dream, had been off-limits.
Then I came across the Stoeger Uplander
Longfowler, and it reminded me the idea
of a double-barrel shotgun, like so many
other things, can be much different than
the reality.
No work of art, the Stoeger Longfowler
side-by-side possesses a sort of brutal
beauty, not unlike a well-made hammer.
The barrels are of the obligatory -inch
length, with an additional 3/ inch added
on via extended choke tubes that do nothing for the gun's looks. Like the barrels,
the square receiver is matte black with no
engraving other than the standard model
name and chambering details. Interestingly, my test model seemed to be suffering from an identity crisis; the right side of
the receiver was faintly inscribed "Stoeger
Longfowler S/S," while the chamber of the

left barrel bore the inscription "Uplander
Supreme." My guess is the factory-Brazil's
.. Amantino-uses the same monobloc
for both Stoeger models, the pair belonging
to the company's Uplander line.
The stock and beavertail fore-end are
of A-grade walnut, also in a dark matte
finish that brings to mind the old marketgunning doubles of days gone by. My
mother's father passed down a -gauge
Ithaca/Western Arms Long Range Double,
and the Longfowler reminds me a lot of
that side-by-side. Like the old Ithaca, the
Stoeger is plainly adorned with pressed
checkering at the wrist and along the foreend, although it's a bit too shallow to serve
much purpose in terms of aiding grip.
If you're paying less than  for a
side-by-side shotgun, don't expect the
same kind of fit and finish you'd find on
a high-grade double. It's just not going
to happen. The wood-to-metal fit on the
Longfowler is adequate at best, with a
slight bit of gapping where the fore-end
wood meets the steel spacer. Tooling
marks are minimal, however. Even the
lines where the barrels join the monobloc
are unobtrusive. Mass-produced doubles
are going to vary in quality, so I suggest
handling several to find one where the
assembler in the factory took some pride
in his or her work.
When I first pulled the Longfowler
from the box, the action was stiff and
  ❘

I all but had to break the gun over my
knee to open it. After just a few shots, it
loosened up considerably before settling
in to open with a motion that's easy but
by no means sloppy. One thing that has
remained stiff is the single, non-selectable
trigger, which fires the right barrel first
at ¼ pounds of pull weight and the left
barrel at ½. The tang safety is solid and
automatically resets upon opening. The
Longfowler is also fitted with extractors
that never failed to lift magnum loads
from the chambers, even when those
chambers exhibited extreme fouling from

 ❘  .


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American Hunter - June 2014

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of American Hunter - June 2014

Table of Contents
American Hunter - June 2014 - Cover1
American Hunter - June 2014 - Cover2
American Hunter - June 2014 - 1
American Hunter - June 2014 - Table of Contents
American Hunter - June 2014 - 3
American Hunter - June 2014 - 4
American Hunter - June 2014 - 5
American Hunter - June 2014 - 6
American Hunter - June 2014 - 7
American Hunter - June 2014 - 8
American Hunter - June 2014 - 9
American Hunter - June 2014 - 10
American Hunter - June 2014 - 11
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American Hunter - June 2014 - 13
American Hunter - June 2014 - 14
American Hunter - June 2014 - 15
American Hunter - June 2014 - 16
American Hunter - June 2014 - 17
American Hunter - June 2014 - 18
American Hunter - June 2014 - 19
American Hunter - June 2014 - 20
American Hunter - June 2014 - 21
American Hunter - June 2014 - 22
American Hunter - June 2014 - 23
American Hunter - June 2014 - 24
American Hunter - June 2014 - 25
American Hunter - June 2014 - 26
American Hunter - June 2014 - 27
American Hunter - June 2014 - 28
American Hunter - June 2014 - 29
American Hunter - June 2014 - 30
American Hunter - June 2014 - 31
American Hunter - June 2014 - 32
American Hunter - June 2014 - 33
American Hunter - June 2014 - 34
American Hunter - June 2014 - 35
American Hunter - June 2014 - 36
American Hunter - June 2014 - 37
American Hunter - June 2014 - 38
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American Hunter - June 2014 - 41
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American Hunter - June 2014 - Cover4
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