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The Vault

Maxim 08/15 Bipod Positions

I got an email from a reader named Philip who is a fan and collector of Maxim guns, who put together an interesting video on the use of the bipod on the MG08/15.

From his email:

The MG08/15 is often considered the blacksheep of the Maxim world. It does tend to rock a bit while [...]

2-Gun Action Match: Gewehr 41

I recently picked up a Walther G41 rifle (1943 production) and have been excited to have a chance to put it through a 2-Gun match. This particular rifle has clearly led an interesting life – it came all matching, but missing the magazine and bayonet lug, and with a stock that had been strangely modified [...]

Film Review: Generation War (Unsere Mütter, Unsere Väter)

Generation War originally came out two years ago as a three-part German television miniseries, and I only found out about it recently. It has been described as a German Band of Brothers, but that misses some of the nuance. The story follows a group of five childhood friends from 1941 until the defeat of Germany [...]

Walther Volkspistole at James D Julia

As the Second World War started to really take a toll on German industrial production, several companies started to work on alternatives to the P38 handgun in an effort to reduce production cost and time. This is one such example made by Walther, with a normal type of milled slide and an experimental frame made [...]

Nickl Prototype M1916/22 Pistol at James D Julia

Josef Nickl was one of the chief R&D designers at Mauser after the Federle brothers, and one of his pet projects was a rotating barrel military pistol developed from the Steyr-Hahn M1912 pistol. He built a number of prototypes of it while at Mauser, but the company never put it into production because of a [...]

Experimental “Joint Safety” C96 Mauser at James D Julia

This particular 1902-made example of the C96 Mauser incorporates several experimental features of the design that would never go into mass production. It was an effort to make a version of the C96 that would be more suitable for civilian carry – something a bit lighter and more compact than the military style. To this [...]

Mauser 1912/14 Experimental .45ACP Pistol at James D Julia

Before World War One, the Mauser company tried to make a follow-up automatic pistol to replace its famous C96 “Broomhandle” design with something more modern. The result was a very successful pocket pistol in .25ACP and .32ACP, and a series of unsuccessful blowback and delayed blowback service pistols in 9mm and .45ACP. This particular one [...]

20-Shot C96 “Broomhandle” Mauser at James D Julia

Early in the production of the C96 Mauser, the company tried a variety of different configurations of the pistol, to see what would be popular and sell well. Most of these were abandoned by about 1902, when the design was more or less standardized to the version were are familiar with today. One of the [...]

Dreyse/Kufahl Needlefire Revolver at James D Julia

Needlefire rifles were developed in the 1830s and represented and early effective type of breechloading rifle. As such, they were adopted by both German and French armies – but only in rifle form. Needlefire handguns were much less common. This particular design was patented in 1852 by a man named G.L. Kufahl in the UK, [...]

Walther MP-PP Prototype at James D Julia

During the late 1920s, it looked like the German Army was going to replace the P08 Luger with a less expensive sidearm, and several major German companies developed prototype guns to meet this anticipated need. The replacement ended up being postponed for nearly a decade (the P38 would be the eventual result), and this led [...]