The Vault

Vintage Saturday: On Maneuvers

Looks a bit verdant for North Africa…

Zouaves on maneuvers with M1886 Lebel rifles, in 1909.

Biography: James Paris Lee

James Paris Lee

James Paris Lee was a firearms designer whose inventions had a far greater historical significance than even most firearms enthusiasts realize. Where Lee is recognized at all, it is generally for the rifles that bear his name – the Remington-Lee, the 1895 Lee Navy, the Lee-Metford, and (of course) the Lee-Enfield. [...]

Reader Questions: 6.5×55 Chamber, M47 Clips, Side-Mounted Oprods

Today I’m answering some questions sent in last week – I think this will be a fun and interesting regular feature for the site. If you have a question you’ve been wondering about, please email it to me, and I’ll see if I can get you an answer for the next Reader Questions column! I [...]

2-Gun Match: Swiss K31 (Video)

I’ve been looking forward to shooting one of the local 2-Gun Action Challenge Matches with a Swiss straight-pull rifle for a while now, and had the chance this past weekend. I was debating between using a Gewehr 1911 (the older style long rifle) or the K31 (newer carbine variant), and so I left it up [...]

Vintage Saturday: Trench Periscope

German soldier using a somewhat primitive trench periscope with a Mauser rifle, circa 1916 (photo from Drake Goodman)

Vintage Saturday: Below Sea Level

Army-issue hip waders: important gear in a country below sea level!

Dutch soldiers with M95 carbines in a canal, 1939 – from WarAlbum.ru.

Vintage Saturday: What Would Roosevelt Shoot?

Not the cool Roosevelt – we know he liked his .405-caliber Big Medicine. I’m talking about the other one:

cap

Leszek found this on eBay (you can buy it if you want; I have no connection to the seller). Reportedly it’s a press photo from 1920 (during his V-P bid), before he contracted Polio. [...]

Bolt Action Systems

Thanks to Robert, we have a series of high-resolution scans showing cutaway diagrams of a bunch of the major bolt-action systems. Very cool to look at – thanks Robert!

Lee (labeled “Lee-Speed” because John Speed contributed many improvements to the magazine, sights, and other parts of the rifle)

Krag

Mannlicher (1886 pattern, [...]

Swiss Straight-Pull First Impressions

I recently picked up several Swiss rifles from Simpson Ltd (who has a who bunch of them, and all listed individually so you can choose the exact rifle you want). The Swiss used an evolving series of straight-pull rifles and carbines from 1889 into the 1970s, when the last K31 carbines were finally retired from [...]

Presentation Walther VG-1 (Video)

We took a look at this rifle with a few photos a while back, but I do now have some video of it as well – a VG-1 last ditch rifle with an inlaid plaque presented to the Volkssturm leader of the Wartheland district of Poland, one Arthur Grieser (convicted of war crimes and hanged [...]