"I don't make hell for nobody. I'm only the instrument of a laughing providence. Sometimes I don't like it myself, but I couldn't help it if I was born smart."

1st Sgt. Milton Anthony Warden.
"From here to Eternity"

Paul Valery

"You are in love with intelligence, until it frightens you. For your ideas are terrifying and your hearts are faint. Your acts of pity and cruelty are absurd, committed with no calm, as if they were irresistible. Finally, you fear blood more and more. Blood and time."

The Wisdom of the Ages

"When a young man, I read somewhere the following: God the Almighty said, 'All that is too complex is unnecessary, and it is simple that is needed',"

Mikhail Kalashnikov

Ya ever seen my house?

Ya ever seen my house?
Neither have I Ted! You douchebag.
"Here lies the bravest soldier I've seen since my mirror got grease on it."

Zapp Brannigan

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Of "automatic" (self-exracting) revolvers

Back to weapons, finally. And, I'm done with pitching shit at Larry Correia - explained in depth here.
Also, I've been getting lots of hits from Ms Tamara - all coming from my expressions of... "Who cares?" concerning the release of "Atlas Shrugged". Part one has proven its own thesis. The market spoke.
The matter at hand.

Above,the S&W, Schofield #3, AKA "Russian". A very cool gun. I don't know why but I've always loved that spur under the trigger guard.
I've also always been partial to the top-break design mostly because my first pistol was a Harrington and Richardson Sportsman.
Then I inherited the Iver-Johnson, historic wall-hanger, an incredibly well-built little Saturday Night Special for only having cost the equivalent of $110 back in the day. If it wasn't a black powder model and if anyone actually made .32 S&W short, I'd be shooting the hell out of it.
Of course, in the top-breaks, we shan't leave out the Webley. Hi Webley.

But, just like the chicken and the egg, something had to come first.
Pictured next, two Merwin & Hulbert revolvers.
Now, since they were open-top pistols, they took care of the ejection issue in a way similar but different. Instead of pivoting up, the front of the frame, cylinder and barrel slip forward.
You can see the half dovetail just below the cylinder; the barrel was rotated 90 degrees and pulled ahead. A supposed advantage was the the M&H revolvers were quieter due to the smaller cylinder gap.
In the wild, wild west, M&H revolvers were the fourth most popular - behind Colt, S&W and Remington, in that order.
But... back to the S&W at top. This unit, designed with the advice of the Tsar's guys was the first to use the .44 Russian cartridge - which was the first internally-lubricated bullet and the precursor to the .44 Special and, ultimately, Dirty Harry's round, the .44 magnum.
But, before the Russians approached S&W, they'd had some experience with wheel-guns.
They'd been happy and and they wanted lots and lots of them (an "economies of scale" sort of thing).
This was back when the American manufacturing ethic was such that "maybe we didn't make the most gorgeous, finely crafted firearms" but what we did make were solid reliable ones - and butt-loads of them.
Of course, that was before "manufacturing" entities became corporations whose sole product was stockholder dividends while the nut-and-bolts aspects of the work went to the third world.
But that was now, this is then.
Way back, when men were men and sheep were nervous (1870), the Tsar's Imperial Navy purchased the first ever revolvers used by the Russian military: The Galand-Sommerville (That's the maiden name of my maternal Granny - Sommerville not Galand).
For the the Rusky Nav. It's nomenclature: "Gun, revolver, boarding model, 1870".

This pistol also goes by the name of Galand-Perrin - if chambered for the Perrin .44 cartridge, that ugly little spud below and was manufactured in civilian models as well.

Pictured next, a Romanian, military or police, Galand, circa 1878 with the long lever that makes the earlier ones so cool (to me. I'm a cheap date).
The Galand-Sommerville used a short lever, probably handier but not as dramatic.
The long lever, which swung downward, pulling the cylinder and lower frame forward, was, in its locked position, part of the trigger guard.
But said lever, when swung forward, pulled the cylinder ahead so the spent cartridges could be shaken out.
Coolness will have its day.
The Galand "Sportsman" with attached, cumbersome, folding, shoulder stock.
Question: Where, when using this rather large (12mm) pistol as a quasi-rifle, did the left hand rest? The barrel? - Powder burns on the wrist. Nestled snugly around the front of the cylinder and frame? The same only worse. Maybe lose a finger.
I was going to say: great idea but... It's just not. it's dumb.

But, stupid as the "now it's a rifle, now it's a pistol" concept is, the beauty part of this, the upscale "Where's my ass? I guess the butler has it" crowd's version of a sweet design is shown above.
The extractor plate - forerunner of the star-shaped piece of business on the later S&W, H&R and Iver-Johnson - that holds the base of the cartridge so it can fall free instead of being stuck with carbon to the inside if the chamber.
This outfit, Galand, didn't cry just 'cause S&W got the big contracts. They still innovated.
Above, an early "Tue-Tue" which means, supposedly "kill, kill". Help me out, Kevin.

Lastly - and the name of this is easy to figure out - the Velo-Dog (Velocipede/dog), marketed as a cyclist's line-of-defense against aggressive canines. An earlier, simpler time...
In closing, if you ever want to see enough Belgian guns accompanied by hilariously translated copy, just go here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Now I want one of those Galand revolvers. Not the one with the pointless shoulder stock, though.

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