08 May 2023

Seriously Cool!

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The 1896 Mauser “Broomhandle” semi-automatic pistol fired an 86 grain bullet (a lot like today’s 90 grain 9mm Parabellums) at a much zippier 1450 fps (like a .357 magnum, just a smaller bullet). The magazine held ten rounds, and it was the most powerful handgun in the world right up until the late 1930s when the.357 Magnum came along.

Winston Churchill carried one when he charged with the 21st Lancers at the Battle of Omdurman in 1898, and it saved his bacon.

I have one, of less distinguished pedigree, myself. It’s a really neat, historical, and quite accurate gun, and plenty powerful. When you shoot it, it belches fire out the muzzle and the breech!

Back when I still lived in Connecticut, I was in the habit of test firing guns a bit in my basement. There was a second room under the north wing of the house, and against an old porch pillar standing in support I would prop up a series of 2x4s and other scrap boards with lots of layers, ink in a bullseye, and then fire into the target through the doorway from the outer basement room.

When I first fired my Broomhandle, the bullet penetrated straight through six layers of boards ricocheted off the concrete walls of the far room three times and then exited through a basement window. I was impressed, and felt really stupid and really lucky, though I did have to go and replace that glass!

Cool as my Broomhandle is, the scoped model coming up for auction soon is decidedly cooler. Unfortunately, it apparently falls into the “All the Tea in China” range of collectable value. I still enjoyed looking at the auction listing.

SCOPE & STOCK. Cal. 7.63mm. S# 834001. Seldom does one come across a truly unique special order firearm. This incredible ensemble was reportedly made in 1931 and based on a 1930 Commercial pistol. The frame was dimensionally changed, thickened in the upper portion of the right side to provide a flat surface for a scope base upon which could be mounted an OIGEE scope. The scoped pistol, attached to a standard 1930 Commercial stock, presenting an extraordinarily ensemble that may have been used as a basis for the Hollywood Han Solo blaster. This exact ensemble was sold at a major auction house in the U.S., many years ago, for over $50,000, and was profiled in great detail in the German language C96 book “GESCHICHTE & MODELLE 1923-1945, Vol 4″ on pages 135-137″. The project started using a standard M1930 Commercial having a 5.5″ bbl. w/ fixed front sight & slip-in rear sight graduated 50-1000. Short extractor, 2-lug firing pin, universal safety & sm. ring hammer. Usual Mauser address on top of chamber, Crown/”C”/”U” proof on left chamber flat. Full S# on left side of bbl. extension, disassembly showing a matching frame & an unnumbered locking block & floorplate. The special order work was largely directed to the right side of the frame where the upper portion was machined flat. A scope base was attached using 2 lg. diameter pins, then welded in place, its surface having 2 channels for the cammed levers of the mount. The mount slipped over the base & was secured by turning the levers, just as used to attach a Luger stock to its corresponding lug. Sturdy rings were used to secure an OIGEE scope, the manufacturer active from 1910-1960, marked “OIGEE/BERLIN” in 2 locations, with a magnification of 2.5x & marked “6134” under adjustment knobs. “5588” marked on top of scope, arguably representing the model. Presenting reticle is a central pointed post bracketed by 2 equally thick horizontal bars. The attaching stock is from a standard production 1930 Commercial, this one having an unmarked lug w/ squared shoulders. UNATTACHED ACCESSORIES: scope w/ attached mount & 1930 Commercial shoulder stock. CONDITION: near excellent original salt blue as applied by Mauser to their 1930 Commercial pistols w/ a tempering line just behind the chamber & another at the upper rear of the frame. Sharp edge & handling wear as one might expect from a pistol that has seen light use w/ no evidence of touch up. Bright bore w/sharp rifling. Perfect manual mechanics. Scope & mount, each w/ original finish, are in the same condition w/ scope having bright, crisp optics. Excellent shoulder stock w/a light scattering of handling dings, comparable condition hinge, lug w/ fading over its upper arm. An absolutely stunning special order ensemble. Yes, you could own the Hollywood blaster, but wouldn’t you rather have the real thing? (22-3153/LMA). CURIO. $35,000-65,000.

One Feedback on "Seriously Cool!"

D. Flowers


Way beyond my credit card limit.


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