Charles Daly/Miroku Model 500 Side-by-Side Shotgun

By Chuck Hawks

Charles Daly Model 500
Charles Daly Model 500 field gun. Photo by Chuck Hawks.

B.C. Miroku (in Kochi, Japan) manufactured the Charles Daly Model 500 side-by-side shotguns. Miroku is best known in the U.S. for producing the famous Browning Citori O/U shotguns, but all Miroku made guns are of excellent quality with fine fit and finish. Miroku produced Charles Daly shotguns from 1963 until 1976.

The Model 500 was a straightforward field gun of proven design. It featured an Anson and Deely type boxlock action with a blued receiver, a bit of simple engraving, checkered walnut pistol grip stock and moderate beavertail forend, and blued chopper lump barrels struck full length with a concave (English style) rib. Double underbolts keep the gun closed. A single bead at the end of the rib serves as the sight.

The top tang mounted safety is automatic. Forward is "fire" and back is "safe." The safety works fine, but like all safeties it should never be relied on.

The 500's walnut pistol grip stock and beavertail forend are hand checkered in traditional point patterns. They align the hands nicely with the target. The forend release is of the Anson push button type.

The 500 was equipped with double triggers and plain extractors. Charles Daly's upscale Empire Grade model featured more engraving, a single trigger, and selective ejectors.

The Model 500 was offered in 12 gauge as well as 20 gauge and with barrel lengths of 26" (Mod./IC), 28" (Full/Mod.) and 30" (Full/Full). Many were produced with a solid, raised and tapered barrel rib. A ventilated rib was an extra cost option. The Magnum Model (30" Full/Full barrels) came with a rubber recoil pad, others with a corrugated black plastic butt plate. 12 gauge guns with 26" and 28" barrels came with 2-3/4" chambers, but all 20 gauge guns were bored for 3" shells regardless of barrel length.

None of the foregoing (except the chopper lump barrels and double underlugs) is particularly remarkable. What is remarkable is the high quality materials used and the care that went into the manufacturing and assembly of these guns. The original purchasers of these Charles Daly/Miroku side-by-side guns got a terrific bargain for their money.

Following are some basic specifications for the Charles Daly 500 shotgun.

  • Action: Boxlock
  • Gauges: 12, 20
  • Barrel length: 26", 28" or 30"
  • Chambers: 3"
  • Rib: Concave (English style)
  • Sight: Brass bead
  • Stock: Checkered walnut pistol grip type with blued steel pistol grip cap
  • Forend: Checkered walnut beavertail type
  • Length of pull: 14.5"
  • Length overall: 44.5"
  • Weight: 7.25 pounds (with 28" barrels)
  • 1968 MSRP: $150 (standard rib); $179 (vent rib); $239 (Empire Grade)

Guns and Shooting Online technical advisor Jim Fleck owns the Miroku made Charles Daly Model 500 pictured at the top of this article, which is in excellent condition. Several years ago he had the late Larry Brace fit a Pachmayr Decelerator recoil pad to this gun, which is otherise in original condition.

Basically, the Charles Daly Model 500 field gun lived up to its namesake. It is a very good shotgun that was under priced when new and is still undervalued on today's used market. If you find a used one in good condition, buy it.

Note: A full length review of the Charles Daly Model 500 shotgun can be found on the Product Reviews page.

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Copyright 2007, 2016 by Chuck Hawks. All rights reserved.