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The Vault

Andrew Burgess’ Blow-Forward Pistols

Burgess wood model

You may recognize Andrew Burgess from guns like the Burgess folding shotgun and the 1883 Colt-Burgess lever action rifle…but you probably don’t know him for his semiauto handgun designs. Until recently, I had not even realized he had designed a self-loading handgun – and then I happened to run into a fellow who owns a [...]

Slow Motion: Remington Model 8

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This week’s slow motion footage is a Remington Model 8, in .300 Savage (when the .300 was offered in the Model 81, Remington offered a service rebarreling existing Model 8 rifles for the spiffy new cartridge). This is, of course, John Browning’s classic long-recoil sporting rifle.

For more material on the Model 8, I [...]

Can a Slidefire Effectively Duplicate Full-Auto?

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The Slidefire (and other similar bump-fire stocks) is basically a toy when used form the shoulder. A genuinely fun toy, to be sure, but still a toy. However, I have reason to suspect that when used on a rifle with a bipod and large ammunition capacity it might actually do a good job of duplicating [...]

A Brief Tour of the Rock Island Auction Company

Rock Island Auction Company

I have been spending this past week at the Rock Island Auction Company, making a series of videos on guns that will be in their upcoming regional auction (they will start running on the site here at the beginning of June). I posted a few photos on Facebook, and had someone request a video. Well…why [...]

History of the Designated Marksman’s Rifle (Video)

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Today Karl and I are looking at the history and evolution of the DMR concept. This is the idea of a squad force-multiplier in the form of a rifle with greater precision capability than the standard infantry weapon, but without sacrificing the speed and firepower of that standard weapon. If is differentiated from the modern [...]

Rheinmetall Model 1928

The Rheinmetall model 1928 (designed by one Karl Heinemann and made in Switzerland) was one of the rifles tested by US Ordnance in trials that eventually settled on the Garand and Pedersen designs (and ultimately chose the Garand). The Rheinmetall rifle had a pretty interesting combination of features…

Heinemann/Rheinmetall 1928 rifle field stripped, Aberdeen [...]

Aberdeen Proving Grounds Tests the Madsen in 7mm and 20mm

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In October of 1940, the US proving ground at Aberdeen, Maryland conducted testing of both the Madsen light machine gun (in 7mm caliber) and the Madsen anti-tank/anti-aircraft cannon in 20mm. On November 8th it published a report on the trial (according to its title, the 143rd such report on machine gun testing – I would [...]

Winchester-Hotchkiss 1883: History and Initial Impressions

Winchester-Hotchkiss Model 1883

History

The Winchester-Hotchkiss rifle was first conceived by Benjamin Hotchkiss in 1875, and by 1877 he had four US patents on the design (numbers 99898, 169641, 184285, and 186566) which he sold to the Winchester company in early 1877. Winchester was able to have three sample rifles constructed in time to [...]

Backlog of Video!

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While I have been posting daily videos from the recent series of Rock Island Auction material, I have also been publishing the occasional video on InRange TV – and some of those would probably be of interest to folks here. So now that we have a hiatus from auction content, here are a few things [...]

Blake Bolt Action Rifle at RIA

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The Blake was one of many rifle designs submitted to the US Army trials that would ultimately result in the adoption of the Krag-Jorgensen as the US Army’s standard rifle. The main innovation of Blake’s design was a unique ammunition “packet” system which held 7 cartridges. The rifle would be loaded from the bottom with [...]