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The Vault

7.65mm Radium Pistol at RIA

radium thumb

The Radium was the predecessor to the much more well-known (and more successful) Ruby pistol made by Gabilonda y Urresti, which was sold to the French Army by the hundreds of thousands during World War One. The Radium was very unusual in its magazine design, which featured a spring loaded sliding grip panel instead of [...]

Book Review: Unique Pistols by Robert Adair

I recently became aware of a new book published by Robert L. Adair Jr. on the subject of the “Unique” brand pistols, made by Manufacturer d’Armes des Pyrénées Françaises.

Today, the most commonly recognized Unique is the Model 17, which was underwent an interesting evolution through its production lifetime. The Model 17 was initially [...]

Rexim-Favor SMG

The Rexim-Favor was a Spanish-made, Swiss-marketed, and allegedly French-designed submachine gun produced during the 1950s. Only about 5000 were made in total, as the gun failed to procure any significant military or police contracts. Mechanically, it was a pretty typical submachine gun, using a simple blowback mechanism chambered for 9mm Parabellum ammunition. It [...]

Jim Sullivan on the M16 in Vietnam

When I have the chance to interview Jim Sullivan, one of the original designers of the AR15, one of the subjects that came up (not surprisingly) was the record of failures of the M16 early in Vietnam. What was the cause of those problems? The full story includes several compounding issues, including a lack of [...]

Eibar “Spanish Model 92” Revolver

Top to bottom: .455 Hand Ejector, Trocaola, WW2 M&P

Today’s post is a guest article written by Mike Burns, taking a look at one of the S&W revolver copies made in Eibar for the French military. He compares it to a WWI .455-caliber S&W Hand Ejector and a WWII .38-caliber S&W Military & Police revolver. Thanks, Mike!

Short Background

This is intended to be [...]

Spanish Miquelet Flintlock at RIA

The miquelet lock is generally considered the first true, mature flintlock action in the progression of firearms technology. It combined the pan cover and frizzen (the plate against which the flint strikes) into a single multi-purpose part. This particular pistol is a good example of the characteristics of a miquelet, despite its rather rough condition.

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Slow Motion: Star Model B Super

Today’s high speed video analysis is the first Browning-style pistol that was at hand when I took out the camera: a Star Model B Super. Manufactured in Spain for many years, this basic pistol was made in both 9mm Luger and 9mm Largo variations as well as full-size and shortened varieties. This particular one is [...]

Vintage Saturday: (The World is) Worth Fighting For

Loading them without clips was a pain in 1938, just like today.

Ernest Hemingway on the lines with a Mosin-Nagant during the Spanish Civil War. Photo by Hemingway’s companion Robert Capa, dated November 5th, 1938. What better way to research a book than to actually join the war you are going to write about?

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Calzada Bayo CB-51

Thanks to reader Barton and some connections in Spain, we have some outstanding photos of a couple experimental rifles from the post-WWII era before Spain adopted the CETME rifle. After the war, virtually every major nation was trying to expend upon German small arms technology, and Spain was no exception. They had an advantage in [...]

Charola-Anitua Photos

Recently a 7mm Charola-Anitua pistol showed up on GunBroker, with some pretty decent photos. I can’t afford to buy it, but I can afford to share the photos!

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