From Bird Dog at Maggie’s.
Category Archive 'Guns'
24 Feb 2014
19 Feb 2014
“If an ancient Athenian had to choose between an M12 and an M17-37, he would no doubt have chosen the sexier looking of the two, the Winchester. On the other hand, an ancient Spartan would have grabbed the Remington or Ithaca and shot the Athenian while he oogled the M12. Then the Spartan would have walked off with both guns.”
25 Jan 2014
A Very Strange Volley Gun,
Patented and produced in 1837 by Henry Harrington, this bizarre volley features 37 barrels which fired a .22 caliber bullet. Each barrel would have had to be loaded by hand with loose powder and bullets. All of the barrels discharged simultaneously.
I bet 37 .22 bullets coming his way would, at the very least, make the highwayman stop and think.
Mr. Harrington lived in Southbridge, Massachusetts, and apparently had a penchant for volley guns. He patented a percussion volley gun pistol, made in a variety of barrel lengths and configurations, in 1837. He also produced volley gun rifles in larger calibers. His productions are rare and expensive.
Hat tip to Ratak Monodosico.
01 Jan 2014
Steve Bodio reports that the famous Rigby gunmaking company has resumed London operations and is in possession of the original company records.
I used to own one, too. Mine was one of the earliest made, produced on an Oberndorf Mauser Model of 1898 action and sold October 27th of 1898 to Major Blunt, complete with case, cleaning equipment, and ammunition.
Hat tip to Karen L. Myers.
13 Nov 2013
31 Oct 2013
26 Oct 2013
.45 ACP, Babyface Nelson, Colt .45, Guns, History, Hyman S. Lehman, John Dillinger, National Firearms Act, Pretty Boy Floyd, Roger Touhy
In the 1920’s and 30’s Hyman S. (Hymie) Lehman was a small time Jewish gunsmith who worked out of a leather and saddlery shop in San Antonio, Texas. At the height of his career he invented a new type of firearm based on similar concepts used in World War I; the machine pistol. Essentially Lehman took a Colt 1911, chambered for either .45 ACP or .38 Super, and converted it to fully automatic. At full auto the 7 round magazine of a 1911 would be instantly drained, so he combined his new weapon with a custom 20 or 30 round magazine. In addition, for more control when firing the weapon he attached the foregrip from a Thompson Submachine Gun, and installed a compensator on the muzzle. The result was a very small weapon that could pour out a ton of firepower.
Obviously an ingenious design, surely the military or police would be interested in such a weapon. In fact Lehman probably could have become rich if he was awarded a government contract. However, Lehman’s clientele was made up of some very seedy characters. Infamous names such as John Dillinger, Baby Face Nelson, Pretty Boy Floyd, and Roger “The Terrible” Touhy all purchased one of Lehman’s baby machine guns. Indeed, Lehman’s machine pistols became a part of the violence that was the gangster era. Baby Face Nelson even used his to kill Federal Agent W. Carter Baum and wound two others during a shootout at the Little Bohemia Lodge in Wisconsin. When questioned about the sales, Lehman simply maintained that he had no idea that the men he sold them to were dangerous criminals.
In 1934 the National Firearms Act was passed into law, outlawing the manufacture or possession of fully automatic firearms without a special government tax stamp. Early Texas had passed a similar state law. In 1935 Lehman was arrested for violating that law. Despite two trials he was never convicted. He died due to complications caused by Alzheimer’s Disease in 1990.
Via Ratak Monodosico.
13 Oct 2013
Stephen King is admired as a writer as much for his realism, for the acuity and accuracy of his observation of the details and textures of American life in our time, as he is for his fantasy and unhinged imagination.
You would never find King erroneously making an inaccurate reference to a 1960s television show or comic book, or having one of his juvenile characters consume an incorrectly described popular snack or candy bar, but to Stephen King guns just don’t seem to matter.
King’s latest, Doctor Sleep, is a sequel to one of his major hits, 1977’s The Shining, famous both in the book and in the film version directed by Stanley Kubrick. Dan Torrance, the little kid in The Shining, has grown up into an adult haunted by his visions, and driven by them to drink and personal ruin. He has become a recovering alcoholic, working in a New Hampshire hospice using his unique talents to comfort the dying, and faithfully going to AA meetings and performing his 12 steps, when he is drawn back into conflict with unnatural evil. A local young girl, even more gifted than Dan with psychic abilities, gets in touch with him. She has been targeted by an ancient company of psychic vampires, who unnaturally prolong their own lives by feeding on the essences of members of the tiny minority born with such gifts.
Dan drafts a couple of his local friends to help guard her from an imminent attack, including Billy Freeman, an older municipal handyman who helped Dan get his first local job.
Dave Stone, the girl’s father is skeptical of the old man’s capabilities.
And the gun literate reader goes right up the wall.
Stephen King is so clueless that he thinks that you refer to John Browning’s Model of 1911 as the “One-nine-one-one Colt.” Worse, he does not understand that automatic pistols are typically only semi-automatic. The 1911 Colt was never officially produced in a full-auto version.
Stephen King is at least as ignorant about firearms as the late Ian Fleming, but the difference was that, after committing some howlers, Fleming began consulting with Major Geoffrey Boothroyd, who did know about guns, before mentioning any more of them in his books. Stephen King badly needs a Major Boothroyd.
In Doctor Sleep, the firearm misidentifications keep on coming. As our heroes prepare to ambush the villains, we find Dan equipped with one of two Glock .22s owned by the same Billy Freeman.
The problem is that there are no .22 caliber Glock pistols. Stephen King was confused by the existence of the Glock Model 22, chambered in .40 S&W.
The reader winds up actually uncertain if King means to have Dan shooting baddies with a Glock chambered in the potent man-stopping .40 S&W round, or making do with an imaginary .22 Long Rifle Glock which does not actually exist. From the effect on the villains, I’d guess that Dan was using a powerful center-fire cartridge, and that Stephen King just screwed up by referring to the Model number with a period in front of it.
This sort of thing isn’t the end of the world, but it seems to me that it signifies a very peculiar expression of contempt for accuracy which must be related to a deeply ingrained hoplophobic attitude.
Stephen King would never willingly put the wrong engine in one of his old-time American automobiles or talk about a “Ford Corvette.” He would never mess up on a point of technological nomenclature or misidentify a piece of popular culture. But where firearms are concerned, he just cannot be bothered to check his details.
Obviously, he thinks guns aren’t terribly important and expertise in the area of firearms is not important at all. Nobody who matters will notice. Only rubes and bitter clingers pay attention to that kind of thing anyway.
You can tell that, despite living in the city of Bangor in the state of Maine, where an awful lot of hunting and shooting goes on, the great author lives in an elite community of fashion bubble, the kind of lifestyle which caused Pauline Kael to marvel that Richard Nixon won re-election by a landslide when she herself had never met anyone who would consider voting for Nixon.
06 Oct 2013
Old Picture of the Day says:
Back in the old days, police officers could shoot and a six shot .38 Special revolver was thought perfectly adequate, even for defending the president.
Remember the 1950 attempt to assassinate Harry Truman by Puerto Rican terrorosts?
20 Sep 2013