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Using the Firearm

Overview

Read detailed instructions about loading, unloading, and other operation of your L.C. Smith Double Barreled Shotgun.

Ammunition

  1. Use only high quality, original, factory-manufactured shotgun shells. Do not use cartridges that are dirty, wet, corroded, malformed or damaged. Do not oil cartridges or spray aerosol type lubricants, preservatives or cleaners directly onto cartridges or where excess spray may flow into contact with cartridges. Lubricant or other foreign matter on cartridges can cause potentially dangerous ammunition malfunctions. Use only ammunition of the gauge or caliber for which your firearm is chambered.
  2. The use of reloaded, “remanufactured,” handloaded, or other non-standard ammunition voids all warranties. Improperly loaded ammunition voids all warranties. Improperly loaded ammunition can be extremely dangerous. Severe damage to the firearm and serious injury to the shooter or to others may result. Always use ammunition that complies with the industry performance standards established by the Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute, Inc. of the United States (SAAMI), or the equivalent from other countries.
  3. Firearms may be severely damaged and serious injury to the shooter or to others may result from any condition causing excessive pressure inside the chamber or barrel during firing. Excessive pressure can be caused by obstructions in the barrel, propellant powder overloads, or by the use of the incorrect cartridges or defectively assembled cartridges. In addition, the use of a dirty, corroded, or damaged cartridge can lead to a burst cartridge case and consequent damage to the firearm and personal injury from the sudden escape of high-pressure propellant gas from the firearm’s mechanism.
  4. Immediately stop shooting and check the barrel for a possible obstruction whenever:
  • You have difficulty in, or feel unusual resistance in, chambering a cartridge, or 
  • A cartridge misfires (does not go off), or
  • The mechanism fails to extract a fired cartridge case, or
  • Unburned grains of propellant powder are discovered spilled in the mechanism, or
  • A shot sounds weak or abnormal. In such cases, it is possible that a wad is lodged part way down the barrel. Firing a subsequent shot charge into the obstructed barrel can damage the firearm and cause serious injury to the shooter or to bystanders.
  1. If there is any reason to suspect that something is obstructing the barrel (this can be anything – dirt, mud, snow, sand, water, a wad, etc.), immediately unload the firearm and look through both bores. It is not sufficient to merely look in the chambers. An obstruction may be lodged some distance down the barrel, where it can not easily be seen.
    IF SOMETHING IS IN THE BORE, DO NOT ATTEMPT TO SHOOT IT OUT BY USING ANOTHER CARTRIDGE, OR BY BLOWING IT OUT WITH A BLANK OR A SHELL FROM WHICH THE SHOT HAS BEEN REMOVED. SUCH TECHNIQUES CAN GENERATE EXCESSIVE PRESSURE, DAMAGE THE FIREARM AND CAUSE SERIOUS PERSONAL INJURY.
  2. Dirt, corrosion, or other foreign matter on a cartridge can impede complete chambering and may cause the cartridge case to burst upon firing. The same is true of cartridges which are damaged or deformed.
  3. Do not oil cartridges and be sure to wipe the chamber clean of any oil or preservative before commencing to shoot. Oil interferes with the friction between cartridge case and chamber wall that is necessary for safe functioning, and subjects the firearm to stress similar to that imposed by excessive pressure.
  4. Use lubricants sparingly on the moving parts of your firearm. Avoid excessive spraying of any aerosol gun care product, especially where it may get on ammunition. All lubricants and aerosol spray lubricants in particular, can penetrate cartridge primers and cause misfires. Some highly penetrative lubricants can also migrate inside shell cases and cause deterioration of the propellant powder; on firing, the powder may not ignite. If only the primer ignites, there is danger that the wad may become lodged in the barrel.
  • WARNING: Discharging firearms in poorly ventilated areas, cleaning firearms, or handling ammunition may result in exposure to lead and other substances known to cause birth defects, reproductive harm, and other serious physical injury. Have adequate ventilation at all times. Wash hands thoroughly after exposure.

Assembly

In order to attach the barrels to the receiver, the ejectors must be positioned out of the chambers (see A). To accomplish this, push the forward end of the ejectors rearward with a screwdriver (see B), and mount the barrels and forearm.
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How to Operate the Safety

Prior to firing, know and understand the operation of the safety by practicing with the shotgun unloaded.

The safety is a rectangular switch located on the tang of the action, directly behind the top lever of the shotgun, which slides forward and backward. When the switch is at the rear end of its travel, the letter “S” appears immediately in front of the switch (see C). This means the shotgun will not fire when the trigger is pulled. When the switch is in its forward-most position, the “S” is covered. This means the shotgun is NOT ON SAFE and will fire when the trigger is pulled (see D).

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  • WARNING: The safety switch is not automatic. In other words, it does not automatically go to the SAFE position when the shotgun breech is opened and closed. It must be manually moved to the SAFE position.

Never try to put the safety switch between the SAFE and FIRE positions. Unless the safety is positioned all the way forward or
all the way to the rear, you cannot be certain whether it is on SAFE or FIRE.

The safest way to carry this shotgun is with NO shells in the chambers. If you feel that you must carry the shotgun with shells in the chambers, then the safety must be on SAFE. When you are ready to fire, the safety can quickly be moved to the FIRE position. The only time the safety should be placed in the FIRE position is when you intend to shoot. 

  • WARNING: Never disassemble the safety mechanism. It has been correctly designed, fitted and tested. Any mechanical device can fail, however, so never rely on the safety to justify careless handling. Never use a firearm with a safety that does not function properly.

How to Load

  • WARNING: Never attempt to load your shotgun with ammunition that does not meet the cartridge designation stamped on the inside of the action. This designation is only visible when the shotgun’s action is open.
  • WARNING: Before loading this firearm, always check the bores to be sure they are free of grease, oil or any other obstruction. Be sure the chambers are empty and the safety is on SAFE. 

To open the action of the shotgun, first make sure the gun is pointed in a safe direction. With one hand, move the top lever to the right as far as it will go (don’t use excessive force – it should move easily). With the other hand, pull down on the barrels until the action is fully open (see E & F). Insert one or two shells of the proper gauge into the chambers. 

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LC_Smith_Side_by_Side_How_to_Load_Action_3F.PNG

Keeping you fingers away from the trigger and out of the action, close the action by pulling up on the barrels until it snaps shut. Do not use excessive force in closing the action – it should close easily and you should hear an audible “click” as the action locks. When the action is closed and locked, the top lever will return to its former position, pointing straight to the rear (see G). If it does not do so, do not attempt to fire the gun as the action is not fully locked. Damage to the gun and serious injury to you or others may result. The lever may be slightly off center in some firearms to allow for breaking in of the locking mechanism.

LC_Smith_Side_by_Side_How_to_Load_Top_Lever_4G.PNG

Closing the action automatically cocks the firing pins on both barrels. As soon as the action is loaded and fully closed, the gun
is cocked and ready to fire. Unless you intend to fire the gun as soon as it is loaded, the safety switch should be kept in the SAFE position.

How to Fire

With the gun pointed at the target, move the safety to the FIRE position (all the way forward), aim, and pull the trigger. The selected barrel will fire. To fire the second barrel, pull the trigger again. If you don’t fire both shells, be sure to put the safety on SAFE until you are ready to shoot again.

Selective Ejectors

Your shotgun is fitted with automatic ejectors that eject fired shells when the action is opened (see H). The ejectors will not eject unfired shells. If two shells are loaded, but only one has been fired, only the fired shell will be ejected.

  • WARNING: Take care not to point the rear of the action toward yourself or another person when opening the action. The fired shells are ejected with enough force to cause possible eye injury.

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How to Unload

With the safety on SAFE, and the shotgun pointed in a safe direction, open the action and manually remove the unfired shells from the chambers. The shells will be extracted from the chambers so that they can be removed by hand.

  • WARNING: Before placing the gun in a vehicle or returning it to storage, always unload it and visually inspect the interior of the chambers to make sure that they are empty.

What to do if Your Shotgun Fails to Fire

  1. Misfires: If you squeeze the trigger and the cartridge does not fire, remain in the shooting position and count to 30. Then move the safety switch to SAFE and open the action to remove the misfired cartridge from the gun.
  2. Underpowered Shot: An underpowered cartridge is unusual if the ammunition is fresh, clean, and factory loaded. However, if you hear an unusual sound or low report, you should stop immediately and proceed as follows: Because the wad and powder from the shell may still be in the barrel, you must unload the gun completely and then look through both barrels from the action end (not the muzzle) to see if there is any obstruction. A wad can usually be successfully removed with a cleaning rod. If not, it, or any other stubborn obstruction, should be removed by an authorized gunsmith.

How to Clean Your Shotgun

  • WARNING: Before cleaning your shotgun, be certain it is completely unloaded and the action is open. 

Never attempt to wipe down or clean a loaded firearm. Follow instructions under “How to Unload” before cleaning. 

Regular, proper cleaning of your shotgun will help to extend its useful life and assure proper functioning. Cleaning is especially important if the gun gets wet or if foreign material gets into the action or barrels. 

To clean the chambers and bores, you will need a standard commercial shotgun cleaning rod, a bronze bore brush of the proper diameter, a commercial powder solvent, and cleaning patches. Never use a steel bore brush as it may damage the bore. It is usually wise to use a solvent that also removes the traces of plastic that are sometimes left in the bores during the passage of the wads.

First, run a patch saturated with solvent through the bores and let it stand for a few minutes. Then run the bronze brush through the bores, followed by clean, dry patches. Use additional dry patches until they come out clean. If necessary, repeat the entire procedure. Finally, run a patch through the bores that has been saturated with light gun oil to protect them from rust. 

Dry and clean the outer surfaces of the gun with a soft cloth, removing all moisture and fingerprints. You may find an old toothbrush useful for cleaning hard-to reach crevices. Finally, apply a light coat of gun oil to the action and all external metal surfaces. Do not over-oil. Applying a small amount of light gun grease to the action hinges and to the surfaces where the metal of the forearm and the action meet once or twice a year (more often if the gun is heavily used) will help to make the gun open and close smoothly.

It will help to keep the wood of the stock in good condition and preserve its beauty by occasionally rubbing in a light coat of linseed
oil.

Take-Down Instructions

If you wish to take-down your shotgun for transport or storage, proceed as follows:

  1. Place the safety switch on SAFE.
  2. Make sure the shotgun is unloaded.
  3. The hammers must be cocked before disassembly, or the gun cannot be reassembled. Open and close the action once to cock the hammer.
  4. Press the release button on the tip of the forearm while pulling the front end of the forearm away from the barrels (see I). With the forearm removed, move the top lever to the right and open the action. The barrels may then be lifted away from the action.
    LC_Smith_Side_by_Side_Takedown_Instructions_Forearm_Release_6I.PNG
  5. Reassemble in reverse order. It is not necessary to press the release button when re-installing the forearm. Place the rear end of the forearm in position, then push the forearm toward the barrels. It should snap easily into place. Do not use excessive force.

NOTE: Further disassembly of your shotgun is not recommended, and should be done by an authorized gunsmith.

During freezing conditions, oil may congeal and cause sluggish operation of your gun. It is recommended that only a very thin coat of light oil be used in these conditions.

Condensation droplets of water will form soon after a cold firearm is brought into a warm room. The gun may also become wet during inclement weather. In these cases, all moisture should be removed immediately to avoid the formation of rust. Exterior metal finish may be wiped down with a lightly oiled cloth. 

For long term storage, lightly oil the bore, barrel and action with gun oil. Your firearm should be completely unloaded and stored in a dry area. Never store your firearm in a carrying case. 

Use of Steel Shot

  • WARNING: Steel shot is substantially harder than lead shot. It is enclosed in a plastic wad in most reputable shotshells to help protect the barrel from scoring by the hard steel shot. However, when the steel shot charge passes through the choke constriction in the barrel, the barrel or screw-in choke may be damaged if a tightly-constricted choke is in place. For that reason, we strongly recommend that a choke of no greater constriction than Modified be used when firing steel shot in your shotgun. Use of an Improved Modified or Full choke when firing steel shot will void your warranty.

Choke Tube System

Your shotgun was provided with three choke tubes (IC, M, F) to meet varying shooting and hunting situations. 

A unique notching system allows choke tubes to be easily identified in minimal light conditions, as shown in the following chart.

NO. OF SLOTS ON CHOKE TUBE CHOKE DESIGNATION
I Full
II Improved Modified
III Modified
IIII Improved Cylinder
IIIII Cylinder

Your shotgun barrels are threaded to accept chokes that are unique to the L.C. Smith model. Call 1-800-544-8892 for information about additional choke tubes.

  • WARNING: Always open the action and unload your shotgun before changing chokes. NEVER fire your shotgun without choke tubes installed. Doing so may damage the threads and/or barrels. Always make sure the choke tubes are firmly screwed into the barrels, but do not over-tighten. Never use a choke that is bent or out-of-round.
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