Holland & Holland .240 Apex takedown. Based on a much-refined Mauser 98 action, serial number 49 is a spectacular example of why Holland & Holland is regarded among the world’s finest riflemakers. The sleek little rifle features a 23-inch light sporter barrel with partially-banded front sight and sling eye, banded rear sight with one standing (marked 50/200) and one folding (marked 350) leaf, single-lever detachable mounting system, modified bolt handle, conventional two-position safety, trapdoor grip cap and horn butt plate. The safety lever can only partially rise when the scope is in position (remaining “on safe” with some tension although not locked and still allows free bolt operation). MARKINGS: Serial number (49) appears on front ring and guard. “Holland & Holland, 98 New Bond St., London” centers on the barrel, “Holland’s .240 Bore APEX Regd. Super Express Rifle” as well as “Nitro Proved” shows at the shank. “SANS-NOM TACOMA WA” appears under the wood on the front ring. ENGRAVING: .240 APEX CAL.” tops the front scope ring and “No. 49” the rear scope ring, “SAFE” appears in gold and “49” graces the guard. Both the takedown, guard and butt plate screws are timed and enhanced with scroll. OPTIC: A new Swarovski Z3 3-9×36 with plex reticle is included. DIMENSIONS: Weight (scoped) is 8.4 pounds. Length of pull is 14.15 inches. CONDITION: The bore is extraordinary – mirror bright and nearly pristine. Metal finish appears to be original and stands at approximately 70%, although most of the bottom metal coverage has thinned and silvered. Wood finish has thinned, with possible additions of oil. Checkering is worn and flattened. The stock itself bears the impressions of many days afield, in particular on the right side just forward of the butt plate. The barreled action has been glassed its full length. The horn butt plate is flaking and has some chipping and the right butt shows a teardrop area of finish that likely refreshed over a small knot. The scope is essentially new. The price is firm and a layaway program is available. Trades for fine sporting rifles (particularly customs, rimfires and dangerous game calibers) and handguns will be respectfully considered. $16,500 plus shipping.