Double Trouble: More Superposed Charges

Earlier this month, I wrote a piece about turning single-shot, percussion muzzleloaders into primitive “repeaters” through the concept of superposed charges. The arm shown in that article featured a percussion ignition system that had been modified after it was originally created. It’s important to note that superposed charges were not only a means of modification. […]

17th Century Dogs of War: Development of the Flintlock

Believe it or not, “flintlock” is actually a catch-all term for a variety of different lock mechanisms, in addition to being a specific lock mechanism itself. It’s kind of like “Q-Tip” and “cotton swab.” Lock mechanisms were undergoing a transformation in the 1500s and 1600s. New designs came on the scene and replaced old ones. […]

The Eprouvette: Old School Quality Control

In an era long before mechanical precision, quality control was much less of an exact science than it is today. Without robots, computer programs, etc, it was up to people to do the best they could in ensuring that a product’s quality was consistent, time after time. Gunpowder was just one of the many items […]

Obscure Object of Desire: The Soviet Stechkin

Developed in 1949, the Stechkin is a select-fire, straight blowback pistol in 9x18mm capable of firing 750 rounds per minute accurately out to a distance of 200 meters…or so it was claimed. Igor Stechkin, the inventor and namesake of the pistol, wasn’t a one-trick pony. In addition to this design, he created a variety of […]

A Wedding Present Fit for Royalty

Ernest Hemingway, George Eastman, Elmer Keith, Jimmy Stewart … and Princess Diana. While it may seem as though one of these things is not like the other, they all share a common bond: Guns made by Westley Richards & Company of Birmingham, England. It’s not uncommon to hear about someone getting a gun as a […]

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