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 […]
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 […]
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 […]
The Hamilton was a handgun entered into the Swedish military pistol trials of 1903, where it competed against guns like the Luger and Colt/Browning 1903. The Hamilton was a simply blowback action chambered for 6.5mm Bergmann, although it did have the interesting and unusual feature of a bolt which pivoted on a round path during […]
The Remington Rolling Block, introduced in 1866, was one of the most prolific single shot military rifles in the world. The combination of aggressive marketing, low cost, and an excellent design led to Remington selling literally millions of Rolling Block rifles to a huge number of military forces for several decades.
By 1914, the era […]
The Grant Hammond .45 pistol is a gun which was too late to take part in the major 1907 US military pistol trials, and which was instead presented proactively to the military in hopes of supplementing or replacing the current issue pistol (the Remington M53 falls into this same category). Unfortunately for Mr. Hammond, his […]
The Scotti Model X (the X standing for the 10th year of the Italian Fascist era, or 1932) was one of several semiauto rifles tested by the Italian military during the late 1920s and early 1930s. The Scotti entry into these competitions was chambered for the 6.5mm Carcano cartridge and used standard 6-round clips, identical […]
Best known as the first semiautomatic service rifle adopted by a mainstream military force, the 1908 Mondragon was designed by Mexican native Manuel Mondragon, manufactured by SIG in Switzerland, and adopted by the Mexican Army (Ejercito Mexicano). The adoption was short lived, however, as the guns proved unreliable with the low-quality 7mm Mauser ammunition made […]
Manuel Mondragon was a talented lifelong gun designer born in Mexico. He worked extensively at the Swiss SIG factory, and was the man behind the first military-issue semiautomatic rifle. Before that, though, he designed this series of unique straight-pull bolt action rifles that featured a 3-position safety and “automatic” setting.
Today I’m taking a look […]
The Dror was an Israeli copy of the Johnson LMG, which was made domestically in Israel as part of Israel’s war of independence in the late 1940s. The design was developed through a combination of reverse engineering a Johnson LMG (clandestinely, in a New York hotel room) and technical data leaked to the Haganah by […]