Merkel Jagd und Sportwaffen GmbH is pleased to announce that it has been commissioned to create a special line of shotguns to celebrate the centennial anniversary of L.L.Bean in 2012. Recognizing Merkel’s unparalleled workmanship and dedication to the craft of fine gunmaking, the premium outdoor outfitter chose Merkel to provide its marquee product—a limited number of L.L.Bean 100th Anniversary Commemorative Shotguns—to headline a short list of fine heritage products.

To develop these very special guns, L.L.Bean worked closely with Merkel on their overall design and development. The 100th Anniversary Shotguns include a total of 20 Merkel Model 147SL 20-gauge shotguns, as well as five, four-shotgun sets that include a Model 1620SL 16 gauge, a Model 147SL 20 gauge, a Model 280SL 28 gauge and a Model 360SL .410 bore. The shotguns will feature a never-before-seen and never-to-be-repeated custom hand-engraved game scenes that truly embodies and celebrates the passions of the American hunter and his importance to the L.L.Bean Company.

At the heart of each of these Merkel shotguns is a Holland & Holland-style action with hand-detachable sidelocks with Greener cross-bolt, double-under-barrel locking lugs. The shotguns feature double triggers with automatic tang-mounted safeties. Spent shells are expelled by way of H&H-style automatic ejectors. The barrels are 28 inches in length and are of cold-hammer-forged steel with solid sighting ribs.

Each shotgun boasts hand-selected, oil-finished Luxury-grade Turkish walnut furniture with a gold medallion notating its prominence. The stock contour is an English style with custom Scottish skip-line checkering. The length-of-pull is 14 3/8 inches, the drop-at-the-comb is 1 1/2 inches, the drop-at-the-heel is 2 9/16 inches, and the cast-off is 1/4 inch.

The actions exhibit hand-engraved game scenes specially created for L.L.Bean on the silver-grayed sidelocks. The bottom metal of each shotgun receiver features a custom gold-inlayed hand engraving of the original Maine Hunting Shoe with surrounding gold inscriptions indicating the company’s year of inception, 1912, and its 100th year anniversary, 2012. The Maine Hunting Shoe is exceptionally important to the company, as it was Mr. L.L. Bean’s first product offering a century ago, and it is a testament and symbol of his company’s product innovation, his deep dedication to the traditional outdoor sports, and his commitment to total customer satisfaction.

The left side of the receiver features deep-relief hand engravings of a German Shorthaired Pointer flushing a pair of Ruffed Grouse. The right side features two American Woodcock taking flight in a lush forest.

The silver-nitrate forearm latch, trigger guard, action lever and receiver tang are garnished with fine Arabesque scrolling. The chamber end of the cold-blued barrels feature rich and intricate hand-engraved Arabesque scrolls. The base of the shotgun’s action lever is inscribed with the letters “LL” in gold inlays.

Each individual L.L.Bean 100th Anniversary Commemorative Shotgun is engraved with a specially designated gold-inlayed number identifying its exclusive place in the production of this rare and limited edition.

These fine collectable shotguns will be available for reservation on a first-come, first-served basis at the stroke of midnight, EST, Jan. 1, 2012, at www.llbean.com. Additionally, the commemorative shotguns will be available for immediate purchase exclusively at the L.L.Bean Hunting & Fishing Store in Freeport, Maine, after Jan. 1. Call 877-755-2326, or visit www.llbean.com for more information.

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