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RIA: Gewehr 29/40 Mauser

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Over the next couple weeks we will be looking at several Polish firearms, and the first one is today: the G29/40. When German forces overran the arms factory in Radom, Poland, they captured in nearly completely intact. One of the guns being produced there had been the wz. 29; a Polish version of the K98k […]

RIA: Porter Turret Rifle

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The Porter was one of the few turret rifles ever put into serial production. Turret rifles are similar in principle to revolvers, but they is a cylinder with radial chambers (like the spokes of a wheel) instead of parallel chambers. Herein lies the potential problem: there is always a chamber pointing right back at you, […]

RIA: An Introduction to Early Lever-Action Rifles

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We’ve all seen lever action rifles galore in movies about the old west, and most of us have handled and shot a bunch of them as well. But do you know where they came from?

Today we will take a look at the first American lever-action rifle put into successful (more or less) production, the […]

RIA: Greener’s Humane Horse Killer

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Humans have been killing animals for thousands of years, and with the development of the self-contained cartridge, the Greener company started making a compact and efficient Humane Horse Killer. Used by veterinarians for euthanizing creatures (versions were made for pretty much all major domesticated animals), they were made into the 1960s. This type of device […]

RIA: MP3008 Sten Copy

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The MP 3008, aka Gerät Neumünster, was one of two German efforts to copy the British Sten gun. The first was the Gerät Potsdam (“gerät” meaning device or project; basically project code name), which was a direct copy of the Sten distinguishable only by a marking details and a few differences in manufacturing processes. While […]

Smoothbore Spencer: Tracing a Mystery Gun

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Today’s firearm is not a normal gun; it is a conversion of a Spencer into a shotgun. My question is, what path did this weapon travel? What did it begin as, and how did it come to be in its current form?

Let’s see if we can puzzle this out looking at the evidence in […]

RIA: Russian Winchester 1895 in 7.62x54R

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The Winchester 1895 was the last of Winchester’s lever-action rifles, and has an interesting place in a couple different parts of world history. On the one hand, the 1895 in .405 Winchester caliber is known as Theodore Roosevelt’s “Big Medicine” for safari hunting. On another, it was the object of the largest military lever-action purchase […]

RIA: Norwegian M1914 Kongsberg Colt (Video)

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After a series of pistol trials, Norway adopted a copy of the Colt 1911 in .45 ACP as its standard service pistol in 1914. A license was purchased from FN (while under German occupation, interestingly) to produce the guns locally at Kongsberg, and production ran slowly and sporadically until German occupation in WWII. At that […]

Le Français .32ACP Pistol (Video)

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The Le Français was a staple of Manufrance production, being first designed in 1912 and produced until the late 1960s. This example is in .32ACP caliber, which was only made for the commercial market in the 1950s and 60s (after the cartridge was out of service with the French military and thus civilian-legal). It has […]

RIA: Imperial Gewehr 71 (Video)

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The Gewehr 1871 was the first rifle adopted by the newly-formed German state after its unification at the end of the Franco-Prussian War. It replaced the decades-old Dreyse needle rifles, and fired an 11x60mm black powder cartridge. It was the first significant rifle designed by the Mauser brothers, and would evolve into the iconic and […]