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Q&A #5: Rollin White and Other (Better) Designers

Questions in part I of today’s Q&A:

1:04 – What was Rollin White’s revolver like? 7:09 – Why did pan magazines disappear? 10:14 – Why no pointed pistol bullets? 13:24 – Funky rounds like Trounds or Gyrojet rockets 17:47 – Current US MHS trials 19:55 – Underappreciated designers

Questions in the part II […]

Transitional Swiss Sniper K31 Rifles (Video)

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During World War II, the Swiss military experimented with two models of K31 carbine with integral optics (the K31/42 and K31/43). These were found to be not sufficient for military service, and after more experimentation and development, the ZfK-55 rifle was adopted in 1955. What we are looking at today are a pair of […]

Savage Prototype Longslide .380 (Video)

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Savage made just a few experimental long-slide versions of their pistols (most of the ones out there are fakes made by modifying existing guns). Personally, I think that this version in .380 would have made an excellent officer’s service sidearm for many European militaries at the time. Most did not see a need for a […]

Japanese Type 4 Garand Photos

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Towards the end of WWII, in 1944, the Japanese Navy developed a copy of the American M1 Garand rifle, chambered for the 7.7mm cartridge. This followed attempts to simply rebarrel captured US guns, which did not work well because of difficulty getting the en bloc clips to function properly. The newly manufactured Japanese rifles were […]

Detailed Photos: Walther A115 No. 3

I did a video on this very interesting German prototype semiauto rifle a few weeks ago, and took one or two photographs at the same time. The genesis of the Gewehr 41 gas system is clearly visible, and it is also an interesting look at an early attempt at using primarily stamped components for a […]

BSA 1926 & 1929 Thompson SMGs

In the early days of the Thompson Submachine Gun, the Auto-Ordnance Company was looking for customers globally. General John Thompson had personally run a demonstration of the gun in England in June of 1921, which was well received militarily, if not politically. Unfortunately for Thompson, just a few weeks before the trial a plot to […]

Disassembly photos: Simson Prototype Blowback 9mm

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In the late 1920s, the Simson company built a handful of prototype pistols for consideration by the German military. Noises had been made about replacing the Luger with something more cost effective, and several companies moved to design options. The Simson pistol was chambered for the 9x19mm Parabellum cartridge (as the military wanted), but was […]

Disassembly Photos: Bendix-Hyde 2nd Model Carbine

Bendix-Hyde 2nd Model disassembled

This is a second pattern Bendix-Hyde carbine, made for the M1 Carbine trials. The first Bendix-Hyde had a number of features that Ordnance requested be changed (including a pistol grip), and this was the modified version submitted for the second round of tests. It lost out to the Winchester design, of course, which became the […]

New Video Series from the Pattern Room

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Nope, it’s not mine (although I do look forward to visiting the NFC again in the future) – my friend Vic has started a video channel looking at some of the guns in the monumental National Firearms Centre (aka, the Pattern Room) collection. for his first video (with a low-quality backup camera, due to some […]

RIA: Pattern 1913 Enfield Trials Rifle

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One of the lessons learned by the British military in the aftermath of the Boer War was that modern Mauser rifles were superior to their Lee-action rifles and carbines. In response, British ordnance began experimenting with a Mauser-pattern rifle, ultimately finalized as the Pattern 1913. This rifle would also leave behind the obsolescent .303 […]