The Vault

What I Didn’t Buy Last Weekend

So this past weekend was a Regional auction at the Rock Island Auction house, which I neglected to post about beforehand. The Regional auctions are the ones with typically lots of less valuable guns packaged up into lots of 4, 5, 6, or more. I put in bids on a bunch of lots, but unfortunately [...]

Movie Review: Assembly (2007)

The past year’s lineup of blockbusters from Hollywood has been pretty light on war movies, so here’s one you may not have seen to fill the gap. Produced in China by director Feng Xiaogang, it is Assembly – and it’s a very impressive production.

In many ways, Assembly is a Chinese version of Saving Private [...]

Vintage Saturday: Mausers on the Silk Road

Original caption: Masib, Ahmad, Haji, Abdullah, Kara-khoja outlaws at Panopa shelter huts, Panopa, Xinjiang, China [c1915] MA Stein

Commentary from the photographer:

Full-length portrait of the four men, standing in a line with rifles. ‘While halting for the night I had an interesting opportunity of becoming acquainted with a small party of well-armed outlaws from [...]

Book Review: The Early Arisakas

Are you interested in Japanese weapons and militaria? There is a group you should be aware of – Banzai. Formed in 1982, Banzai has been publishing a newsletter full of Japanese-weaponry-related articles for more than 30 years now, and bringing together like-minded collectors for as long. For decades Japanese military arms like the Arisakas and [...]

2-Gun Match: Chinese 7.62x39mm Bren

Thanks to the folks at SMG Guns in Texas, I just got my completed semiauto Bren gun in 7.62x39mm. What the best way to break it in? Take it to a run-n-gun match, of course!

First off, the front grip is a repro experimental piece made by IMA – it would not originally have [...]

Another Unusual Chinese Pistol

When you see a pistol with markings from multiple different manufacturers, it means one of two things: collaborative project, or Chinese workshop manufacture (or Khyber Pass workshop manufacture). Well, this one is definitely Chinese:

Check out all the different markings! We have Brownings (three of ‘em!), Mauser, and a Belgian proof stamp all nestled [...]

Mystery Chinese Pistol

I’m sure everyone has heard a second or third hand story about someone finding a total steal on a gun at an estate sale or auction. Heck, I’ve had a few great moments that start to get close to that myself – but I’ve not yet actually found a gun at a yard sale, much [...]

Vintage Saturday: Type 53

Yes, I know the carbine is also called the Type 53, but this Type 53 is a machine gun, okay? (photo from Max Popenker)

Unrelated to this photo…the Zhejiang Iron Works in China made everything from machine guns to grenades to field glasses – and called everything “Type 77″ in commemoration of the Marco [...]

Vintage Saturday: More BAR!

I’ve got a fever…and the only prescription is more BAR! (photo from reader Ruy)

The BAR sure got around, didn’t it? This is a Polish wz.28 Belgian Modele 30 model in China (thanks to Leszek for the correction).

[...]

Vintage Saturday: LMG Variety Pack

Around here we grin like this when we get our hands on these guns too…because we don’t have return fire coming in at our range. (photo courtesy Max Popenker)

ZB light machine guns are pretty often seen with Chinese troops, but the DP-28s are less common. And the BAR variant (either a Colt or [...]