Enter your email address to receive notifications of new posts by email.

The Vault

Japanese Type 97 Sniper Rifle (Video)

The most common Japanese sniper rifle of World War II was the Type 97, essentially a Type 38 Arisaka rifle with a 2.5x telescopic sight mounted to the side of the receiver. About 22,000 of them were made in total (a smaller number of Type 99 sniper rifles were also made). The scope on [...]

Blake Bolt Action Rifle at RIA

blake thumb

The Blake was one of many rifle designs submitted to the US Army trials that would ultimately result in the adoption of the Krag-Jorgensen as the US Army’s standard rifle. The main innovation of Blake’s design was a unique ammunition “packet” system which held 7 cartridges. The rifle would be loaded from the bottom with [...]

Mondragon 1894 Straight-Pull at RIA

mondragon 1894 thumb

Most people who recognize the name Mondragon know it from Manuel Mondragon’s model 1908 semiauto rifle, the first such rifle to be adopted on a large scale by a military (the Mexican Army, in this case). Well, Mondragon was designing arms for many years before that particular rifle. For example, in 1894 he produced a [...]

Vintage Saturday: More Anti-Aircraft

Mass recoil sensitivity!

Soviet snipers train at ranging aircraft with 91/30 PU rifles.

M1895 Lee Navy Salvaged from the USS Maine at James D Julia

The M1895 Lee Navy was a rifle well ahead of it’s time – a smallbore (6mm) straight-pull bolt action adopted by the US Navy at the same time that the US Army was adopting the Krag-Jorgenson. The Lee Navy was designed by James Paris Lee (the same man who designed the Lee Enfield action), and [...]

A Rifle of Many Travels

I was visiting a friend recently (James, who runs Tombstone Territorial Firearms, which you should definitely visit if you are ever in Tombstone – it’s a remarkably well-stocked shop), and he had pulled out a particular beat-up old rifle that he though I would find interesting. I definitely did – and grabbed some photos to [...]

Enfield No5 “Jungle Carbine” Video

The No.5 MkI Enfield, commonly called the “jungle carbine” is nearly the shortest-lived rifle in British military service (second to the Rifle No.9, aka EM-2). Introduced in 1944, they were declared obsolete in 1947 as the result of insoluble accuracy problems. The guns were originally developed from regular No4 Enfield rifles with the goal of [...]

Book Review: The K98k Rifle (Propaganda Photo Series Vol. I)

There is an excellent series of books on German WWII small arms being written and published out of the Netherlands – the Propaganda Photo Series. Today I am specifically looking at Volume I, which covers the K98k rifle, but there are 8 other volumes covering everything from the Luger to German antitank weapons.

The format [...]

Assessment of a ZF-41 Optic

The ZF-41 was a tiny 1.5x optic made in large numbers by Germany during WWII. It is a long eye relief design, mounting over the rear sight of a K98k, and allowing unimpeded up for stripper clips for reloading. These scopes are generally though to have been complete failures, and a huge disappointment to German [...]

Vintage Saturday: Second-Rate Spoils

After the war is over these will become pretty valuable, right?

German troops with captured Mosin Nagant rifles (and one SVT-40).