Discussion in 'Small Arms and Edged Weapons' started by von Poop, May 19, 2017.
My favourite hand-gun...
Having spent most of my life in architecture and design plus a long time interest in firearms I find this thread of great interest The famous architect, Lewis Sullivan of turn of the 19-20 centuries in Chicago created the oft quoted expression "Form follows function" as one of the cornerstones of evaluating buildings but it applies to all design fields. particularly firearms. Early firearms were expensive relative to their time, hand made and often embellished with various decorations , even cannons. As their usage grew and methods of early mass production occurred the decoration side subsided. With true mass production it virtually ended in military weapons and still exist in hand customization of individual pieces and also in CNC engraving,, chemical etching and roll die marking. I personally would rather have a finely made gun, nicely finished rather than one with massed produced decorative work but that is personal.
As for "The best looking guns: etc.. the other quote, I know not the author, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder " comes into play. It generally means one individual might like something and find it beautiful and another find it the opposite. Not a good definition of "best" to me. Some items seem to "pass the test of time" which means it goes far beyond individuals and is based on lasting values, balance, asymmetrical balance, , symmetry, proportions, integrity of materials, care in construction, fit, finish, endless list. A gunstock made of fiberglas, no matter how functional, would not look correct on a Purdey but perfect tically acceptable on a FAL. I visually prefer the black synthetic stock to wood visually. on the FAL.
This is a military forum and the aesthetica of military weapons definitely have a wide range . though different from individual firearms. . Function plays a bigger role in military guns than a pre-1964 Winchester Model 70..though they functioned beautiful, they were also lovely to look upon..
On the military side I find John Browning's guns all seem to look "correct, " The BAR is beautiful to me as is the 1911 but I do not find them "pretty" . But they are definitely good looking for their roles. The FAL and the P 35 are my personal favorite military weapons, they meet all my criteria for an aesthetically pleasing firearm. The Lugar does as well as does a German made 7X57 Mauser carbine made for Argentina. All of which dates me .
In individual firearms I am spellbound by many of the 1930n period Mauser based bolt action hunting rifles of the type Abercrombie and Fitch , Rigby, , etc made. . A lightly figured walnut stock, normal checkering well done, Bayern cheek, Schnabel forend, lever operated claw scope mounts !!!!!!! To die for to me. Or a Purdy, Boss or Greener side by side. Way out of my price range.
They are art forms meant to me shot. The Colt single action or the Python fit that same catagory but the hidden beauty in the Python is feeling that action . Butter rendered in steel !. If I go back in time a bit the Colt 1851 Navy is , to me, the most beautiful handgun of eternity.. .
As a child I was given my grandfather's favorite bird gun, a Field Grade, double trigger, non ejector Parker 20 gauge. A bit the worst for honest wear but a thing of beauty then and now. . The lines were perfect.. It stands the test of time.
Ah, that Lewis gun above, ugly as sin exactly as it should be. It is a killing machine and looks the role perfectly and yes a pair looks 300% better, right up there with the quad 50's and 20mms of WW2. Beautiful for their role.
Great topic and we all tend to see what we like as beautiful to everyone.
The Triple Locks were the gun that birthed the .44 Magnum. A crazy old coot named Elmer Keith began dangerously overloading the .44 Special version to plink at deer out at 400 yards or so. Keith wrote up his adventures with his revolving hand grenade pistol in the gun magazines of the time and then lobbied S&W for even crazier versions of the Triple Lock, and they responded by lengthening the .44 Special cartridge case into the .44 Magnum, and lengthening the revolver cylinder to accommodate them. The lengthened case could achieve the same performance at lower pressure, without risk of the shooter losing his hand with an errant detonation. You could still sprain your wrist and deafen yourself shooting one, but that was all part of the fun. That new pistol was the S&W Model 29.
Went to the gun show this past weekend down at the Lamar-Dixon Center in Gonzales, La. Met a buddy of mine and his couzan there. I must say that it was one of the best gun shows that I've been to in quite some time. Plenty of vendors, plenty of neat stuff, and plenty of people. I saw this fine shootin' iron and bumped it up to the next firearm that I will buy when buying time comes. The Keltec Sub 2000, and is classified as a carbine. Man I gotta have one, it's just too cool. They were going for $499.00 there. Really felt like whoopin out the credit card, but I kept in back of my mind that my riding mower was still in the shop and will cost around $400 to bring home. So this item will have to wait.
It folds up for storage. The one I was looking at shoots a 40mm bullet, and takes the same magazine as I have for my Glocks. That option will come in handy come the zombie apocalypse. The only drawback to it that I've noticed is that is doesn't come with a bayonet lug. Dang!
A year 10 metal work student could whip one up...
Well tell him to put a bayonet lug on it then.
.40 caliber methinks. .40mm would be more fun than the ATF allows. Try dry-firing one before you buy it, that particular carbine has a whopping 10 or 12 pound trigger off the shelf.
For some reason I have an affinity for pistol caliber carbines, especially when they offer magazine interoperability with some of my pistols. Carbines are cheap and fun to shoot, and the portability is great to have when walking through my father in law's huge property while plinking away.
The sub 2K is a nice little gun, I've fired the 9mm version, though I found two things I didn't like. Kodiak already mentioned the heavy trigger pull, though you don't really notice until you fire 50 rounds of so (aren't heavy trigger pulls always like that?). The good thing is that they have readily available aftermarket parts to reduce the trigger if you like. The second and more annoying problem is that there is no last shot bolt hold-open when the magazine is dry. This is a problem that cannot be resolved with aftermarket parts, and is something I pretty much demand in my automatic weapons. My use of the sub 2K was a few years ago, so I've no idea if the manufacturer has added this feature to current production runs. If they have, I'd seriously consider buying one.
I cannot deny, that has all that handsome ugly stuff going for it. Pleasing.
What's struck me here with all the revolver talk earlier, is just how archaic they're starting to look.
Things that I grew up seeing as just 'a gun' in films etc. are now, visually at least, drifting into a similar mental category to muzzle-loaders and flintlocks.
Amazing how long some of these pieces serve as modern firearms, but it seems there may be a time for all of them to finally look dated.
Like Otto and A-58 I also find that I *need* a pistol caliber carbine, but the one that has caught my eye is this little take-down shooter by TNW. This one comes in 9, 40, 45 and 10mm. This one is (very loosely) based on the AR platform, though downsized. It has scads of AR15 upgrades that will fit right on, which is an attractive quality. The thing I like the most is that it has a side charging upper instead of the (to me) clumsy rear charger on standard ARs.
I'll probably get one in 9mm just because I have so much cheap ammo in that caliber stashed away. I can't help myself, every time I walk through Walmart and see that federal 9mm with aluminum cases for ten bucks, I grab a few more boxes. I need the carbine to prevent my cupboard from breaking under all that weight, or this is what I will tell the wife...
Edited to add that this one is also fed with Glock mags.
As to my post above and why Elmer Keith was a crazy old coot, hold my beer and watch this video by the fine folks at Forgotten Weapons.
Keith, were you named after Elmer ???? , that is a neat video and what is left of that 45 Long Colt cylinder would be a world class paper weight. I am always amazed at the the difference between land and groove dimensions and who gets them confused on gun forums. . Plus all the small variations manufacturers knowing make . The huge number of new cartridges made today is mind boggling. Read a funny forum post about a guy finding a M 54 Winchester in 25 Roberts and he had never heard of it and apparently not bothered to look it up. . What a sweet rifle that one would have been. Never owned one but shot a Model 70 in that caliber.. The crazy ones to me are the .50 cal Magnum handguns: was not there a 50 Limbaugh ? (sp). They should have satisfied Elmer !
The TNW looks like a nice bit of kit as our English friends would say . One in 10mm would have some bite but I still prefer 9's for similar reasons to you and Otto. Ummmm, if Otto shoots a military submachine gun would it be a full Otto ? I guess after scarfing down pizza he would be a full Auto. I am glad my life is not so confusing. . I am only known as Gaines, James, Jane, Gains and Games .
CAC and KB, thank you for the likes. I have a like long interest in firearms and my interest in WW2 goes back to be a child attic, in my grandmother's , a big Victorian house with a turret no less. Dust and light were both in abundance as were stacks of Time, Life and the Saturday's Evening Post all full of pictures and writings about the war. . My gun interest resulted from growing up on a farm where I both learned to hut and took up target shooting on my own..Both fascinating subjects. I lost interest in both until the Internet arrived and forums where people from all over the world can get together online to share common interest.
Since we are discussing best looking guns, I thought I might show my Browning Light Twelve, semiautomatic shotgun that was made in Belgium in 1971. It has only a few minor scratches on the stock.
There is certainly something pleasing about the old Browning humpbacks. Remington, Savage (somebody else?) also made humpbacks when the original patents expired and it was pretty much the only reliable auto shotgun on the market for most of the last century. There's actually a ring set up (that modern shooters might not be aware of) inside the action so that you can adjust the gas feed for light field loads, medium buck and heavy slug loads. That's some pretty advanced design right there!
How about this crazy gun below? I remember these in comic books when I was a kid, always carried by some evil Nazi caricature. These were Steampunk before the term Steampunk was coined.
Yes, I have always had the ring set for the "high brass" loads. I have used it for waterfowl and upland game birds. Occasionally I take the forearm off and oil the tube and spring and ring. Actually, as I have aged, I find my Remington Wingmaster to be more comfortable to carry when hunting pheasants. The Browning weighs more.
They even sound nice...
All variants a persistent winner aesthetically,
Artillery Lugers with snail magazines similarly contending in the 'pre-steampunk' category, though I'd argue they don't quite work as well in sheer looks as C96s. A tad 'bitty', the sort of thing a showoff might equip himself with, or a young aristo's mum could be persuaded into by a salesman telling her "All the best officers are carrying them at the front, ma'am.".
When rounded receivers began to replace the squared off back ones I thought they looked "sissy" Too slick and smooth. I loved and still do that Browning , a real gun to me at that time and it easily stands the test of time.
Now the "broomhandle " Mauser is totally timeless, it looks like a military pistol should look,. all the pieces and parts in clear sight, no hiding under a dust cover or shroud !! . Some were beautifully finished, strawed and deep blue, sone a bit decked out in tool makes and the big red nine carved in. . It is also one of those beautiful ugly guns !! Cobby is the right word, the pistol version of a SMLE ! another favorite ugly as sin in it's beauty of purpose..
I still want a Broomhandle ! With the long magazine and the butt attached it almost fits Otto and your carbine catagory
I recall that Churchill hisself carried a C96 when he was a correspondent during the Boer War, being the fashionable nob that he was. I don't know if he actually shot anyone, but that 7.63 Mauser was quite a zippy little round and would likely spoil the day of anyone unfortunate enough to be in front of one.
And yeah, the Luger and the C96 both have that same elegant/crazy look about them. There were a number of Austrian/Hungarian/German pistols around at the dawn of the 20th Century that shared a certain weird beauty, though only the C96 and Luger outlasted the era.
Often hard to beat Hermann Historica for the odd page of rather attractive firearms...
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