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Mauser 06/08 Semiauto Pistol at James D Julia

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Throughout the pre-WWI period, Paul Mauser was working continuously to develop a reliable self-loaiding rifle. Among his many experimental designs was a flapper-locked rifle. The flapper-locking system was first patented by a Swede named Kjellman, but his design (for a light machine gun) did not get beyond prototype form. Mauser made a military rifle […]

Mannlicher 1901/04 Carbine at James D Julia

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Ferdinand von Mannlicher was a brilliant and prolific European gun designer with more than a few widely-adopted military arms to his name. One of his very last guns was this carbine, which was also one of the first intermediate cartridge carbines developed. It was a mostly experimental gun, and never saw large-scale production.

Mechanically, […]

Mauser 1902 Prototype Long Recoil Rifle at James D Julia

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Paul Mauser was very persistent – if ultimately unsuccessful – in his long-tim goal to create a practical semiautomatic rifle using a full-power cartridge. In total he tried some 17 different designs, including one in 1901 which suffered a burst casing during test firing and cost him an eye.

This particular rifle came just […]

BSA’s Experimental .34 Caliber Pistols at James D Julia

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During World War One, Birmingham Small Arms (aka BSA) grew into a massive arms manufacturing facility to supply the previously inconceivable military appetite for rifles. When the war ended, they were left with a bit of a dilemma. As a private entity, what were they to do with such a huge production capacity and […]

Pancor Jackhammer

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The Pancor Jackhammer was a select-fire combat shotgun designed by John Andersen in the 1980s. He was a Korean War veteran who had used a pump shotgun in combat, and while he liked the shotgun concept, he felt there must be a more efficient way to make a shotgun than a single-loading pump action. The […]

RIA: Liegeoise 1888 Trials Rifle

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The Belgian Army held rifle trials in the late 1880s to choose a new infantry rifle, and the winner was the Model 1889 Belgian Mauser. Quite a few different guns were involved in the competition though, including this Engh-patent rifle made by Manufacture Liegeois D’Armes. It’s a pretty unusual bolt action that is definitely worth […]

American WWI Experimental SMG (Video)

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Reader Larry sent me this video, which was produced by the US Army Ordnance Corp just recently. It’s a one-off experimental submachine gun built in 1918, and is definitely not something like you have seen before. In order to maintain commonality of ammunition and magazines, the gun uses standard M1911 7-round mags and ammo. You […]

Furrer M1919 Double-Barrel SMG

Furrer M1919 double barrel subgun (Photo courtesy National Firearms Centre, Leeds UK)


We have looked at one of Adolf Furrer’s M1919 submachine guns before, but this one is a much different implementation. The model 1919 Furrer designed was basically a chassis for converting a Luger pistol into a carbine. He lengthened the barrel, added a booster to help it cycle, and replace the gripframe with a […]

Swiss Prototype Pistols: P44/8 and W+F Bern P43 (Video)

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Switzerland was an early adopter of the Luger pistol as a standard military sidearm, but by WWII that design was becoming obsolete and the Swiss began looking for a newer sidearm. Several lines of development were pursued, and we have examples of two of them here: the W+F Bern P43 and the SIG P44/8 (the […]

Danish Bang Rifle for British Trials

British trials Bang Rifle, caliber .303 (photo courtesy National Firearms Centre, Leeds, UK)


British trials Bang Rifle, caliber .303 (photo courtesy National Firearms Centre, Leeds, UK)

One of the first semiautomatic rifles tested by the US military was a design by a Dane named Søren Hansen Bang, which was first presented to the government in 1911. The rifles used a gas trap design which would ultimately […]