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Tuesday, 17 October 2017

9x23 Winchester Cartridge:

 I actually started today to look at the .38" Super - but when I tripped-over the 9x23 Winchester and was awed by it's SAAMI internal pressure limit set at 55,000 p.s.i. - I changed tack. - This round is like a very much hotted-up rimless 38 Super but with a Luger styled lengthened, strengthened (& slightly tapered) case.

Then I found a new website and an excellent story about this round,  9x23 Winchester - that I had known nothing about until now. Link:

The 9x23 Winchester delivers more velocity & 'power' than the 357 Magnum and is being credited by someone with the greatest "STOPPING POWER" record of all handgun rounds.

I had previously researched the 9mm Winchester Magnum (The 9x29mm): Link:

If you too don't know just how many "Nines" there are .. take a look at the table listing them on Wikipedia - I had no idea:

Glock 20 adapted to 9x23 Winchester:

I'll 'fess-up' that what attracted me initially was an online SHOOTING Times story written about converting a 10mm Glock 20 to the 9x23 Winchester by a barrel swap - Link:

Do we need a super hotted-up 9mm ?

-Well it seems likely that the answer is no .. not really - as standard NATO 9x19 mm is currently performing fine and also seems OK with recoil sensitive people.

But for the power hungry .. it will be lighter to cart around than a S&W X-Frame 50" caliber and will hold many more rounds.

Marty K.

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Every Caliber You Can Dream Of ?:

I recently said that there was a metallic cartridge in every caliber .. sized for just about every need .. (Link:  )

- So - after worrying about that for a while - I thought that maybe I'd better check that there aren't really any gaps on the shelves that need filling.

Using the 2018 Gun Digest - page 353 Centre-fire Rifle Cartridges & starting with the first & smallest round listed  .17" Hornet - I followed one-by-one each line entry in the tables up to  .50 BMG and (phwww!) sure enough, I didn't find a single gap of much more than '25 thou'. between any two different sequential  bullet calibers.
What Seems Like a Gap isn't .. 
Between .17 and .22" There's .204 Ruger (5mm) @ 4,225ft/sec. 😙

- In the pistol calibers between .22" and up to .50 S&W Magnum there is a smaller range with marginally larger gaps but I couldn't identify any gaping holes.

So it seems that shooter's needs are well served by the makers .. except that not every caliber will be catered for in all currently offered firearms. The only true openings for new cartridges are as improvements on the earlier versions.
0.025 inch is not very much difference in size to get excited over (0.0635 centimeter) .. that's about twice as thick as a hens egg shell or half as thick as your finger nails.

If you could slice ham off the bone that thin - your knife would have a good edge eh.

However ... Below .17" caliber I do see that there are several "wild-kitten" .14" calibers
.. and there even has been a 0.10" :

American Bill Eichelberger has produced sub calibers from 0.14 diameter, in fact .144, .12 ( .123) and even the diminutive .10 ( .103 ) bullet diameters, - that’s tiny!

The .10 Eichelberger Squirrel made from .22 Hornet brass, uses a 7.2gr bullet and 6.5gr of W748 for a velocity of 4,000fps. 

Is this the smallest caliber known at .103"diameter ?

- There's always got to be some clever soul eh,

There's obviously 'other stuff' to consider than the projectile's diameter .. you'll all be listing weight, shape, velocity etc - but at my low-tech level as a rifleman I'm guessing that the cartridge case takes Number 1 importance as in it's size & strength and all those other factors that I know naught-about.
 - But there really is plenty of overlap in the spread of choices laid-out for our delectation (that's a nice word eh .. DELECTATION). - If you hear two guys with gun cases arguing about the superior characteristics of 6.5 Creedmoor over 6.0 Creedmoor - you might guess that they know a lot more about long range shooting than I do.

I don't get-it:

Just before I close - I'd like to ask - what is it that differentiates between "winners & loosers"?
The .308' and "Thirty Calibers" ( -in metrics these are properly called  7.62 mm.) are widely praised as full power rifle calibers that can do anything you want.. However in handgun lore - this self-same 7.62 / 7.65  ('thirty-two') pistol caliber has been reviled as inadequate and puny by most experts - despite performing competently as both law-enforcement and military issue side arms over more than 100 years?

Marty K.

Friday, 13 October 2017


Doing Democracy in the UK 'The Mother of Parliaments' last Thursday there were 18 MPs who bothered to attend the debate in the Westminster Chamber.
18 Out Of 650 MPs at work.

 - I wonder how many of the 800 'LORDS' were at work in their 'Upper House' - The House Of Lords?

May I respectfully suggest that we look at bringing-in a wee bit of democracy into our lives - sack that lot, & set-up  CITIZENS ASSEMBLIES to inform Governments of OUR needs and viewpoints .. seeing as how "that lot" who we pay a fortune to represent us - can't be bothered.

Check what Wikipedia has to say:

A good mate maintains that some old bloke said "Democracy has been hacked by Capitalism" - which is roughly a quote from Al Gore .. who should have been President of USA in 2000 but was displaced by 5/4 by the US Supreme Court despite having a small majority of the public's votes.

- another old bloke once said ..

"Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun"

- May I respectfully suggest some factual reporting at THE CANARY ..

Note: USA has some 6,800 nuclear weapons under the control of Commander In Chief Donald Trump.
US Aircraft Close To North Korea.

Marty K.

Le-Francais .32"/ 7.65mm TIP-UP Pistol:

For some time - I've rather fancied getting a tidy little Beretta 3032 Tomcat Inox 'Tip-Up'.

- despite it being almost completely useless here in NZ - because it's short barrel would not be licensed for shooting (.. and despite it's reputation for frame cracks with poor service from Beretta USA).

BUT this model is a truly neat wee thing for use anywhere people actually are allowed to defend themselves from criminals ..

So I was interested to find images of the Manufrance Le-Francais .32" ACP that was made - guess where? (in France possibly 😆) from 1950 to 1965 - because there are some quiet similar design features .. plus a lot of differences too eh.

Le-Francais St. Etienne (MAS) .32" ACP.

This French maker has a very long history of military and Law Enforcement Firearms manufacture plus sales to the public of  "non-military caliber" handguns. I can't do better really than to only point you to a very full story here - LINK:

It is a cleverly designed double-action-only striker-fired auto-pistol - one that I'd also love to own out of interest - should I ever have the spare cash. It takes an 8 round magazine plus the one up-the-spout.

Both the Beretta Tomcat and the Le-Francais use similar(ish) verticle 'bell-crank lever' recoil spring systems to function their blow-back operation but the 'Ooh La-la chic pops-up it's 83 mm. (3.27 inches) barrel automatically for chambering a round when the magazine is removed.. Clever eh.

Forgotten weapons Ian McCollum does his usual excellent review of this little known piece - Link:

No John M Browning Influences Here Then.

Cute as .. but I do get a little annoyed that most 'thirty-two' pistols seem to have barrels shorter than the pointless New Zealand police 'B' Category stipulation of a minimum of four inches.

Marty K.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Russian PSS Silent S/A Pistol:

The PSS auto-pistol was developed in Russia around 1980 & first issued to KGB Spetsnaz in 1983 - being made in their special weapons plant at TsNIITochMash (weaponry precision engineering section)..
This semi-auto pistol is one of several Russian handguns specially produced for SILENT function in covert operations without a bulky silencer. The perceived noise level is very low & mainly caused by the mechanics - being at a similar level as a well silenced .22 rim-fire.

PSS Silent Pistol

The PSS has a magazine capacity of six rounds of the long(ish) cartridges, and uses a floating chamber - it might be described as a 'REACTION OPERATED' semi-auto .. as all propellant gases are retained inside the captive piston cartridge.  The pistols grip is deep from front to rear to take the magazine and gives the piece a chunky look.

SP4 Cartridge On The Right Has Been Fired.

The SP-4  captive piston steel copper washed cartridge is a well proven 7.62×42mm necked round - the same as used for the OTs-38 Stechkin silent revolver.

This cartridge uses a similar diameter projectile and over all size & shape to the old Nagant M1895 revolver rounds (**Interesting to recall that the very efficient Nagant Revolver was able to be effectively silenced**) ... and is also the same bullet caliber as 'thirty-two' caliber revolver rounds & .32" ACP.
Stetchkin OTS-38 Silent Revolver.
(Fires from the bottom chamber)
The SP-4 cartridge contains an internal piston and a powder charge of around 3.5 grains, with the stem of the piston inserted into the base of the bullet as an alignment  'guide'. On firing, the piston drives the steel bullet from the barrel to an effective range of 25 meters plus. On firing the internal piston seals the cartridge neck, preventing noise & blast from escaping.

The 155 grain mild-steel bullets have a muzzle velocity of 620 feet per second and muzzle energy of 133 ft,/lbs.

These various covert operations handguns all work fine and are established technology. - However they all, - PSS Pistol,- OTS-38 Revolver, - and the American QSPR Revolver, are the products of non-commercial MILITARY development & each depends on non-standard 'special' sized ammunition and 'special' expensive custom-made firearms.
US QSPR 'Tunnel Rat' Revolver

If you can think it .. you can make it. - A captive-piston version of some regular handgun cartridges could be produced commercially - if permitted .. See the Post about my "standard caliber"  Silent Handgun Cartridge Patent .. Link:

- Here's further Link to an excellent full review of the PSS Pistol:

Marty K.

Notes On Shooting & Hearing Loss:
Firearms Are Loud
Exposure to noise greater than 140 dB can permanently damage hearing. Almost all firearms create noise that is over the 140-dB level. A small .22-caliber rifle can produce noise around 140 dB, while big-bore rifles and pistols can produce sound over 175 dB. Firing guns in a place where sounds can reverberate, or bounce off walls and other structures, can make noises louder and increase the risk of hearing loss. Also, adding muzzle brakes or other modifications can make the firearm louder. People who do not wear hearing protection while shooting can suffer a severe hearing loss with as little as one shot, if the conditions are right. Audiologists see this often, especially during hunting season when hunters and bystanders may be exposed to rapid fire from big-bore rifles, shotguns, or pistols.

Hearing Loss Due To Firearm Noise

People who use firearms are more likely to develop hearing loss than those who do not. Firearm users tend to have high-frequency permanent hearing loss, which means that they may have trouble hearing speech sounds like "s," "th," or "v" and other high-pitched sounds. The left ear (in right-handed shooters) often suffers more damage than the right ear because it is closer to, and directly in line with, the muzzle of the firearm. Also, the right ear is partially protected by head shadow. People with high-frequency hearing loss may say that they can hear what is said but that it is not clear, and they may accuse others of mumbling. They may not get their hearing tested because they don't think they have a problem. They may also have ringing in their ears, called tinnitus. The ringing, like the hearing loss, can be permanent.
Michael Stewart, PhD, CCC-A, Professor of Audiology, Central Michigan University.

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Death Of Rasputin & The Handgun Stopping Power Debate::

The following sorry tale of the cyanide poisoning - prolonged clubbing, torture - shooting & drowning of mystic fraud Grigori Rasputin ("The Mad Monk") on 30 December 1916 should impress anyone interested in the "stopping power" of handguns .. it is compiled from a mix of official reports.

- Having decided that Rasputin's influence over the Russian Emperor Tzar Nicholas II (Nicholas The Bloody) and his Tsarina had made him a threat to the Empire & Great Britain during WW I -  a group of nobles & British MI6 led by Prince Felix Yusupov (who used to wear his mother's gowns), the Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich, and the right-wing politician  Vladimir Purishkevich concocted a plan to kill Rasputin after luring him to PrinceYusupovs' Moika Palace.
Yusupov's Moika Palace, St. Petersburg.
(Upper Floors Were Used As The British Embassy).
Russian Tzar 'Nicholas The Bloody' Dressed As British Navy Admiral Of The Fleet.

Tzar Nicholas II with King George V (Queen Elizabeth's Grandfather) In Berlin 1913 - Both Wearing German Uniforms - Their Mothers Were Sisters.
Rasputin was murdered during the early morning on 30 December 1916, at the home of Prince Felix Yusupov. - He died of three gunshot wounds after cyanide poisoning - one shot was at close-range to his forehead (- followed by being heavily beaten, and then thrown into a frozen river.) The body was recovered with water-filled lungs indicating that he actually drowned.
Autopsy Photo Of Rasputin After His Supper With Russian Nobles & British Agents.
.. At around 2:30 am, Prince Yusupov excused himself to go upstairs, where his fellow conspirators were waiting.

Imperial Russian Nagant Revolver.
- Taking a revolverfrom Grand Duke Dmitry Pavlovich, the weird transvestite Prince Yusupov returned to the basement and, referring to a crucifix that was in the room, told Rasputin that he'd "better look at the crucifix and say a prayer," then shot him once in the chest.
- Using Yusupov’s wife to lure Rasputin to their home, the conspirators had fed Rasputin wine and cakes laced with cyanide. Though it was reportedly enough poison to kill five men, Rasputin was unaffected.
The Basement at Yusupov's Palace.
- "Quick, quick, come down!" I cried, "He's still alive." He was crawling on hands and knees, grasping and roaring like a wounded animal. He gave a desperate leap and managed to reach the secret door which led into the courtyard. - Knowing that the door was locked, I waited on the landing above grasping my rubber club. To my horror I saw the door open and Rasputin disappear. Politician Purishkevich sprang after him. Two shots echoed through the night. I heard a third shot, then a fourth. I saw Rasputin totter and fall beside a heap of snow.

- And then after a time he rose and walked to the door. We were afraid that our work had been in vain. Suddenly, as he turned at the door, some one shot at him quickly.
With a frightful scream Rasputin whirled and fell, face down, on the floor. The others came bounding over to him and stood over his prostrate, writhing body.
It was suggested that two more shots be fired to make certain of his death, but one of those present said, "No, no; it is his last agony now."

-As he seemed to be disappearing in the darkness,  Purishkevich, who had been standing by, reached over and picked up an American-made automatic revolver and fired two shots swiftly into his retreating figure.

 We heard him fall with a groan, and later when we approached the body he was very still and cold and - dead.

The first bullet passed through the stomach and the liver. This mortal blow had been shot from a distance of 20 centimeters. The wound on the right side, made at nearly exactly the same time as the first, was also mortal; it passed through the right kidney. The victim, at the time of the murder, was standing. When he was shot in the forehead, his body was already on the ground.

 He was shot several tunes, with three different weapons, with all the evidence suggesting that Rayner fired the final fatal shot, using his personal Webley Revolver. Rasputin's body was then driven to the river & dumped through an ice hole in the Neva.

  Lieutenant Oswald Theodore Rayner, a British Intelligence officer attached to the SIS station in St Petersburg burned all his papers before he died in 1961.

Professor Dmitri Kosorotov also examined the three bullet wounds in Rasputin's body. "The first has penetrated the left side of the chest and has gone through the stomach and liver," he wrote. "The second has entered into the right side of the back and gone through the kidney." Both of these would have inflicted terrible wounds. But the third bullet was the fatal shot. "It hit the victim on the forehead and penetrated into his brain." The corpses testicles were terribly crushed as by a flexible club.
It was most unfortunate that Professor Kosorotov's post-mortem was brought to an abrupt halt on the orders of the Tsarina. But the professor did have time to photograph the corpse and to inspect the bullet entry wounds. He noted that they "came from different caliber revolvers."
On the night of the murder, Yusupov was in possession of Grand Duke Dmitrii's Browning #, while Purishkevich had a Savage. Either of these weapons could have caused the wounds to Rasputin's liver and kidney. But the fatal gunshot wound to Rasputin's head was not caused by an automatic weapon: it could only have come from a revolver. Forensic scientists and ballistic experts agree that the grazing around the wound was consistent with that which is left by a lead, non-jacketed bullet fired at point-blank range.
They also agree that gun was almost certainly a British-made .455 Webley Revolver.
This was the favourite gun of Oswald Rayner, a close friend of Yusupov since the days when they had both studied at Oxford University.

 Sir Samuel Hoare – a future British Government minister wrote: "True to his nickname ('the rake') it was at an orgy that Rasputin met his death." Jeffery notes simply that Rasputin "was murdered in the early hours of the morning of Saturday 30 December". In his recently published book Six, the author and journalist Michael Smith refers to a number of claims that Rasputin was shot several times with three different weapons "with all the evidence suggesting that MI6 officer Oswald Rayner fired the fatal shot, using his personal Webley revolver".

Smith writes that the British theory "suffers from a number of problems," because it focuses on the gun that was used to shoot Rasputin, when neither the authorities at the time nor later forensic experts have "been able to say with any accuracy the caliber or make of gun that had been used in the murder,"

Stopping Power.

Prince Felix & Irina Yusupov fled the Russian February revolution (with their diamonds) on-board the British warship HMS Marlborough and lived in Paris & London (They owned chateau in France) until his death in 1967 (Irina in 1970).

Marty K.

Friday, 6 October 2017

"COLT 1911" Developed Brand Loyalty:

John M Browning's tilting-barrel short-recoil design first surfaced at the turn of the 20th century in the M 1900 design.
 Following the 1904 Thompson-LaGarde ** stockyard handgun effectiveness tests - the army became fixated on the .45" caliber for US military purposes - although versions of 'the 1911' have been been produced in many other effective calibers such as 9x19 mm. - .38" Super. .38 acp. etc.

Thompson-LaGarde Quote:

"We are not acquainted with any bullet fired from a hand weapon that will stop a determined enemy when the projectile traverses soft parts alone. The requirements of such a bullet would need to have a sectional area like that of a 3-inch solid shot - the recoil from which when used in hand weapons would be prohibitive. "

** The Thompson–LaGarde Tests in which most of the experimental animals shot had to be 'pole-axed' by a slaughterman - have since been criticized as being "highly unscientific" and producing a recommendation unsupported by the tests findings.

Formally adopted by the US Army on March 29, 1911 - the "1911" was later so extensively modified and improved in the light of combat usage as to require re-classification in 1924 as the M1911A1.

Some 2.7 Million '1911s" were built by multiple US military contractors and since it's replacement in 1986 by the superior 9mm. Beretta M 9 - countless makers around the world continued to produce variations of this venerable design.
Chinese Norinco Copies Are Popular With "Forty-Five" Fans.

A wide selection of versions on a '1911' theme are made .. including the "70 Series" & "80 series" plus high capacity double-stackers and even striker-fired designs - still claiming to be "1911s"..
HUDSON H9 .. Striker Fired Double-Stacked High Capacity 9mm
 - Lauded as an "All American Modern 1911(ish).

- So it seems that almost anything can qualify to be presented to believers as "a 1911" provided the marketing mad-men can see a buck in it eh.

Coke or Pepsi, - Ford or Holden, - Harley or Honda ?

 - It's called "Brand Loyalty" (the tendency of some consumers to continue buying the same brand of goods rather than competing brands.)
Shouldn't that be Bourbon?

Marty K.