Q&A 53: With Matt Larosiere (FRT Trigger) and Russell Phagan (KP-15)

0:00:28 – What am I using to learn French?
0:01:21 – How difficult is a C&R license?
0:04:06 – Thoughts on FB Radom’s return to the US commercial market?
Military Beryl AK: https://youtu.be/VGUHYjZFg5c

0:06:22 – Do milling and optics on slides impact pistol reliability?
0:08:09 – Maxim-Tokarev
0:09:29 – Suppressing the Nagant 1895
0:12:09 – Military sidearms by someone like Arex?
0:13:30 – Why did the Luger 1906 rifle not catch on?
0:15:51 – Why doesn’t the RSC-1917 load from the top?
RSC-1917: https://youtu.be/BQan6gn37A4

0:18:12 – Thoughts on the Rare Breed FRT – Guest spot by Matt Larosiere
Matt’s channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLrm1e8ffKnV8gnACtGjy6A

0:25:15 – M1 Garand vs M14
0:27:25 – Finnish military 1895 Nagant revolvers
0:29:39 – Why was the SKS not a more successful military rifle?
0:32:13 – Converting .303 British to rimless
0:34:45 – Manurhin MR-73 vs H&K Mk23
0:36:33 – Why no revolvers in .30 Carbine?
0:38:05 – Elements of European culture I like
0:40:07 – Would the British use 9mm or .455 in a WW1 SMG?
0:42:19 – What are the MP-1 through MP-4 and the MP-6?
Walther MPL: https://youtu.be/tQSilZnqdlA

0:43:51 – Painting the KP-15 – Guest spot by Russell Phagan
Russell’s channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/SinistralRifleman

0:46:02 – NFA Trusts
0:51:44 – Direct gas impingement pistol?
0:52:21 – Arms for Archduke Franz Ferdinand’s bodyguard
0:54:42 – Did prop/engine speed effect machine gun RoF?
0:56:34 – Build your own WW1 rifle
0:59:21 – Underbarrel grenade launchers vs rifle grenades
1:01:15 – How to have a career working with old guns
1:04:23 – Am I still involved with InRangeTV?
1:06:07 – Japanese vz24 Mauser
1:09:11 – How does the P90 magazine not malfunction all the time?
P90: https://youtu.be/M20PiFxMkrs


  1. Just be aware that some of the smaller auction houses will not honor or recognize a C&R license and you have to deal with a full FFL dealer anyway

  2. I very rarely comment in Q&A portion of FW channel. This time I’d like to make a small exception. For one, the range and quality of subjects/ depth of knowlwdge is breathtaking. I’d also like to mention something of “quality control issues” on M14.

    Having past industrial experience in small arms manufacture I can attest to only a part (although an important one) of M14 potential issues. I encourage anyone to find drawings of M14 barrel and look at the net. A process planner/ programmer/ machinist will immediately spot a minefield of potential issues. This barrel drawing looks to me as an open opportunity how to make a scrap – by default. I have not seen before so intentionally complex piece of engineering garbage. Wishing everyone to have fun in discussion.

  3. To Ian’s succinct and informative response on M-14 vs. M-1, I’d add that the main difference was philosophical / tactical.

    It’s as if someone tried to catch a car blogger in a contradiction by saying “How can you praise a Camry as a successful and reliable auto, yet criticize this Camry-based flying car?”

    Physics impose severe limitations on both flying-car projects and attempts to make a service rifle into an SMG / LMG replacement. The Garand met the standards set for it, and the M-14 met the Garand standard equally or better; it just couldn’t meet the fanciful new expectations set for it by the Army.

    • The US Army said the M14 was the replacement for the M1 Garand, M1/M2 carbine and the the M3 Grease Gun. The US Air Force said the M14 was too big and heavy for a carbine replacement and ordered AR-15s to replace their M1/M2 carbines. The Army eventually allowed the USAF to order Ar-15s / M16s because of failures in the various advanced weapons programs.

  4. “(…)Do milling and optics on slides impact pistol reliability?(…)”
    Laugo Alien is automatic pistol designed so it is possible to install sights independently from moving parts. https://modernfirearms.net/en/handguns/handguns-en/czech-republic-semi-automatic-pistols/laugo-alien-2/

    “(…)Suppressing the Nagant 1895(…)”
    For potentially less loudest solution take look at early development, see 1st image from top https://topwar.ru/22186-otechestvennoe-besshumnoe-oruzhie-besshumnyy-nagan-bratev-mitinyh.html
    there are 2 cylinders rotating in unison, bullets are in sabots, frontal barrel does catch sabot and allow bullet to continue to travel. Therefore powder gases are trapped.

    “(…)Converting .303 British to rimless(…)”
    There existed Cartridge S.A. ball .303 inch Rimless developed during Great War
    which was actually semi-rimmed and intended for working in reworked ·303 British weapons, including aviation Lewis machine gun. Note that this cartridge also differ in case geometry giving greater powder capacity as compared to ·303 British.

    “(…)Why no revolvers in .30 Carbine?(…)”
    There was such revolver developed by S&W yet in 1944 year, https://military.wikia.org/wiki/.30_Carbine states
    In 1944, Smith & Wesson developed a hand-ejector revolver to fire .30 Carbine. It went through 1,232 rounds without incident. From a four-inch (102 mm) barrel, it launched the standard GI ball projectile at 1,277 ft/s (389 m/s), producing a large average group of 4.18 inches (106 mm) at 25 yards (23 m); the military decided not to adopt the revolver. The loud blast is the most oft-mentioned characteristic of the .30 M1 Carbine cartridge fired in a handgun.
    Problem seems to be thunderous blast during firing, as this cartridge was developed for usage with much longer barreled weapons.

    “(…)Would the British use 9mm or .455 in a WW1 SMG?(…)”
    British actually trialed .455 SMG, see section The Villar Perosa in Britain there http://firearms.96.lt/pages/Villar_Perosa.html

    • I don’t think the Taurus Raging Thirty survived very long. The Ruger Blackhawk is still listed in .30 Carbine on the Sturm,Ruger website. It’s easy to make a fixed cylinder revolver for a rimless cartridge, but a swing out or break open revolver needs adapter clips for a rimless cartridge.

    • According to W.H.B Smith in Small Arms of the World (9th ed.) there was an experimental .30 USC revolver during WW2. It was made by Smith & Wesson on the Model 10 Military & Police frame, using the same “half-moon clip” headspacing setup as the M1917 .45 revolver.

      The idea was to provide paratroopers armed with the M1A1 carbine with a sidearm using the same ammunition. Partly in event of the carbine being disabled, but mostly in event of it being lost in the drop, a not uncommon occurrence if the “rifle pouch” was not well-enough secured to the harness.

      Also, if the trooper was hung up in a tree and trying to extricate himself, a revolver was easier to use if some inquisitive German with an MP40 came calling. He would probably only have one hand free; the revolver is a true “one-hand gun” for the first six rounds.

      What did the idea in was that the blast and flash of the .30 USC 110-grain FMJ load in the revolver’s five-inch barrel was so stupendous as to make accurate shooting by anyone but a pistol expert almost impossible. Also, heat treatment of the frame, barrel, and cylinder had to be perfect to deal with the pressures of what was essentially an intermediate rifle cartridge.

      Finally, it was found that the folding-stock M1A1 could be effectively fired with one hand, especially at very short range and shooting down from a tree.

      All the work wasn’t for nothing, though. What Smith & Wesson learned about heat treatment and etc. of the K-frame Model 10 led directly to the introduction of the Model 19 Highway Patrolman in .357 Magnum less than a decade later.



      • “(…)there was an experimental .30 USC revolver during WW2(…)”
        Interestingly there was also automatic pistol for this cartridge during said conflict, namely Grebey automatic pistol https://guns.fandom.com/wiki/Grebey_automatic_pistol
        Interestingly, despite developed around 1943 it has magazine in front of trigger as some 1890s automatic pistols and for me looks similar to Pistola Charola y Anitua.

        • The major problem with the .30 USC in a self-loading pistol is its overall length. It tends to make a grip housing a magazine too wide front-to-back for anyone but those with large hands or very long fingers to properly address.

          The AutoMag III in .30 USC had exactly this problem- along with a quirky safety based on that of the Vz.52, which tended to frighten the wits out of most people who tried using it.

          All variants of the Desert Eagle also share this problem, due to being originally designed around the .357, .44, and .41 Magnum revolver cartridges.

          The Kimball partly solved it by adopting a magazine similar to the P.08 or most .22 LR rimfire self-loaders, that held the cartridges steeply canted and had an unusually steep grip-to-bore angle as a result. What doomed it was the bad idea of friction-retarded blowback, poor QC, and the fact that the military just wasn’t interested in a .30 USC handgun.

          Edwin Tunis once referred to the Carbine as “the pistol that looks like a rifle”; an arm that served a pistol’s military purpose (self-defense for personnel other than infantry,) but was much easier for non-combat personnel to actually hit something with.

          It was actually the world’s first “purpose-designed” Personal Defense Weapon (PDW), and as such fit into no category in existence before that time.

          It’s still one of the best overall choices for that job. As Jeff Cooper might say, that’s either a tribute to its creators or a stunning rebuke to those who came after them.

          Or maybe both.



    • That sounds like the most reasonable use for these, as various Mauser types were in use in China in 7,92 × 57 mm.

  5. “(…)Why no revolvers in .30 Carbine?(…)”
    According to https://military.wikia.org/wiki/.30_Carbine
    In 1944, Smith & Wesson developed a hand-ejector revolver to fire .30 Carbine. It went through 1,232 rounds without incident. From a four-inch (102 mm) barrel, it launched the standard GI ball projectile at 1,277 ft/s (389 m/s), producing a large average group of 4.18 inches (106 mm) at 25 yards (23 m); the military decided not to adopt the revolver. The loud blast is the most oft-mentioned characteristic of the .30 M1 Carbine cartridge fired in a handgun.

    • Besides muzzle blast, that performance is nothing special in comparison with 9mm.

      As I’m sure you understand, they’re directly related. 9mm’s short fat powder column burns efficiently in pistol barrels, whereas most of .30 Carbine’s capacity “advantage” is wasted in front of the muzzle (or the cylinder gap).

  6. Re: British SMG in 1919

    British have trialed Villar-Perosa (aircraft version) in .455 , so if Italians have managed to properly finalize OVP or Beretta 18 they would be probably very easy to adapt to 455, while using 9 Para in them may require more substantial changes.

  7. I don’t know what the situation is today, but my California C&R made no difference in the ritual of 3rd party delivery, waiting period, etc.

    • I detailed my experiences with a California C&R. I had no problems getting J&G in Arizona to ship me C&R rifles, for example.

  8. The M-14 is what happens when a committee loses touch with reality. Look up USAF XF-85 Goblin if you want to see it carried to the absurd.

    • And to top off the stupidity, the people in charge didn’t know that all tooling capable of mass-producing the M14 was either broken beyond repair or sold off to Beretta (in Italy).

    • “(…)USAF XF-85 Goblin(…)”
      Ah yes…another execution of periodically returning parasite fighter concept.
      I suggest https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WE4Uxo6WLio
      which contain both explanation of history of Goblin and footage from tests. Note that due to turbulence made by flying carrier docking inflight proved very difficult even for experienced test pilot. Taking in account 1950s technology flying-aircraft-carrier made sense (due to limited action radii of early jet fighters), but carrying inside required short wingspan and overall length thus compromising performance. Carried outside allowed normal size, this was done in U.S.A. (wingtip-to-wingtip, see Project FICON) and USSR (towing line, see photos https://arsenal-info.ru/b/book/108010072/36 )

    • To say nothing of the XF-84H “Thunderscreech”, the only fighter in history to make the ground crew nauseous when the engine was started up.



      • “(…)make the ground crew nauseous when the engine was started up.”
        Not only that, but it could also knock unfortunate fitter to be knocked prone
        As long as you stood ahead or behind the airplane it really wasn’t so bad but if you got in the plane of the prop [the shockwaves] would knock you down.
        Also running Thunderscreech’s powerplant and managing air traffic was mutually exclusive
        The engine had to be test-run at a remote part of Edwards AFB because the noise prevented air traffic controllers from hearing anything over their radios.

  9. It was an auto-loader, not a revolver, but AMT (American Machine and Tool) made a 30 Carbine pistol, back in the 1980’s I think.

    Regarding the M14, it was put back into service in Iraq and Afghanistan for some roles–an odd feat for a dismal failure. The idea that it would replace the M1 Carbine, the sub machine gun, and the light machine gun was a psychiatric issue, and not a failing of the design. It should have been shorter–that silly flash hider made it far too long. The Garand was, if anything, harder to manufacture–just take the two apart and look at the parts, especially the gas system. Regarding manufacturing, Mr. Garand was a tool and die maker and he figured out the manufacturing issues for the M1, and during WWII only Springfield armory and Winchester made them, and if I am not mistaken Winchester tooled up before the war with help of Springfield. There was no Mr. M14 to lovingly shepherd it through its manufacturing engineering issues–but would have a US conversion from metric to inch have had fewer issues for domestic companies had done much better on a less-familiar style of rifle like the FN-FAL? Not comparing the merits of FALs and M14s, rather, if domestic gun companies could not figure out the M14, how were they going to do better with a design like the FN-FAL.

    • Well, let’s see here, US Army Ordnance deliberately rigged trials to favor the T44 prototype (what became the M14). They could make the small batches of their new rifle, as they didn’t want the FAL, but quickly found that the M14 could not be produced in bulk at the time as all compatible tooling for doing so was BROKEN BEYOND REPAIR or SOLD TO ITALY. Good luck getting Winchester and Springfield employees to do the job using their BARE HANDS.

      • And the Italian Army took a look at the U.S. situation and asked Beretta, “How hard is it to convert an M1 Garand to 7.62 x 51mm and a detachable box magazine?”

        Beretta replied “How many do you want and how fast?”

        The result was the BM59 series, which works a lot better than the M14 and cost a lot less to develop and deploy.

        Of course, Beretta has been in this game for a very long time. After all, one of their customers was Napoleon’s Grand Army.



    • I can’t verify it in any way, shape, or form… But… I have heard from a guy who worked at the Marine Corps equivalent of the Pattern Room, where they have a fairly extensive stash of the Harrington & Richardson T-48 rifles, some of which he said were in brand-new, unfired condition. His assessment, as an FN FAL nut, was that they were some of the nicest inch-pattern rifles he’d ever seen. Take that for what it’s worth, which is about nothing. I don’t even know if that Marine facility even exists any more, or if those rifles are still intact, but it would be very interesting if Ian ever got a chance to do something with them.

      I don’t think there would have been nearly the trouble making the T-48 that they had with the M-14–Most of the issues with the M-14 stemmed from them trying to muddle through with old tooling, and dealing with lost “tribal knowledge” about the production of rifles on that machinery. With the T-48, it was all brand-new, and they’d have had full support from FN. I think it would have produced far better results, but who knows?

  10. Re: The C&R license. I had one, or several actually, a few years back. But I live in California, and when they required long gun registration, I stopped renewing it because, if memory serves, suddenly even C&R weapons had to go thru a big boy FFL.

    You have to keep a bound book of all transfers, and as long as you have the C&R through renewals, you have to keep all the old ones. I have never heard of anyone being asked to show theirs to the BATFE, but it annoyed me, so I would let each C&R lapse, then apply again, and they are very clear that once your C&R lapses, you can destroy the book. So I did.

    It was absolutely a disaster for my pocketbook, I will attest to that!

  11. There are many problem areas in the M14. Most of which lend themselves to fairly simple fixes at the design stage. Why this was not done is a separate question.
    But the main package of problems related to reliability and durability relates to the gas engine assembly.
    They decided that “everything is clear anyway,” and they are now rapidly improving the Garand engine and making the rifle lighter and cheaper.
    It immediately turned out that “just shortening” does not work, and problems arise with the stability of the engine.
    Such problems are common to all piston systems with gas sampling from the middle of the barrel.
    On other systems, this is solved by a massive bolt carrier with sufficiently large idle strokes or by using easily unlocked bolts such as locking the bolt with a swinging body.
    But in the case of the M14, this will not work.
    So they tried to treat it with a “storage” gas chamber. Having piled up a “lot” of small fragile parts, thus making the system expensive to manufacture and problematic to use.
    I don’t think the designers of the M14 were yesterday’s students, but it looks like that.
    As if the leadership of the Springfield Arsenal decided that they could take heels of students for the salary of one Garand and get the same result.
    Machinegun-building is not an area in which quantity turns into quality.
    30,000 monkeys will NEVER write a novel.

    • Should test that; assemble 30,000 Monkeys and provide them with quills and parchment.

      “What’s this you; number 28,573 Monkey, Jack sorry… Have wrote? A novel about man made climate change. Quick base all policy around it for every Government.”

  12. Hearing about the Rare Breed FRT in the context of Forgotten Weapons made me wonder: could the 1891 Salvator Dormus make a claim to being not only the first autoloading pistol, but also the first forced reset trigger (FRT)? And, per ATF, the first machine pistol? 🙂

  13. Ian, 5.7x28mm is a little more than centerfire .22 WMR – it has the same ballistics from a pistol as a .22 WMR does from a rifle. It, the .22 TCM, 6.5 JDJ, 7.5mm FK, and 50 grn loads in .357 SIG & perhaps 9x25mm Dillon offer the possibility of rifle caliber wounds from a handgun. Very interesting time in handgun cartridge development.

    The P90 mag does work well, albeit it is enormously confusing the very 1st time one goes to load it. It has successfully worked in FN’s P90 & PS90, the new KelTec P50, and the late lamented AR57 upper, which happily enabled my own Lyndon 5.7mm rifle built from parts off the interwebs.

  14. For a WWI rifle I think I would go with the Lee Enfield bolt system, which is extremely fast to operate, and has a very convenient safety. I agree with Ian that the 6.5mm Italian round in en bloc clips makes a lot of sense. It is a powerful enough round for infantry use, and the en bloc clips are faster to use than chargers. I like the aperture sights of the M1917, so those would go on the rifle. I think the SMLE is about the right length, so see no reason to change that.

    So I am advocating for an SMLE chambered for 6.5mm Italian, using Carcano clips, and with M1917 sights.

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