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The development

of handguns

he development of firearms is related to the hand cannon were designed at the start of the fifteenth
T discovery of gunpowder as the propellant for century. These were short iron or bronze tubes
projectiles. It is known that the Chinese were already mounted on a long wooden post. The black powder
using gunpowder for their fireworks in the eleventh was loaded through the muzzle. Then a stone or iron
century. Their knowledge of its composition probably projectile was pushed into the primitive barrel
came to Europe via Arab trading routes. Another view through this muzzle. There was a small hole at the end
is that the well-known explorer Marco Polo brought of the tube, the so-called touch-hole. The powder was
gunpowder back from China. From 1271 to 1292, he then ignited with a glowing chip of wood. When the
traveled on a trading mission from Venice to China charge was ignited, the pressure of the gas that was
and back. A third theory is that gunpowder was created propelled the projectile forward. It propelled
developed in Europe itself. In this respect, one of the the projectile in a fairly arbitrary way because the
people credited with its discovery is the German production process was not very precise in those days.
monk, Berthold Schwarz, from Freiburg. In German, In modern firearms, the precision is to a 100th of
the gunpowder was therefore given the name a millimeter, but in those days an inch more or less was
Schwarzpulver (meaning 'black powder'). The usual not considered important. Up to the nineteenth
composition is 75% saltpeter, 15% sulfur and 10% century it was quite usual for only one in twenty shots
charcoal. The sulfur is responsible for the smell of the to hit the target. Shooting was above all a matter of
black powder when the weapon is fired. In the goodwill, combined with a big dose of luck.
fourteenth century it was discovered that it could be Halfway through the fifteenth century the first
used for other things than fireworks; it was also real cannon and mortar appeared. They were mainly
suitable as a propellant for projectiles. The first simple used for laying siege to cities, forts and castles. The

Hand-colored etching of Medieval mortars Copper engraving of a siege from 1500


In this reference work, I would like to provide anyone who wants to know more about

revolvers and pistols with the correct and most recent information about these handguns.

The short introductory chapter on the development of firearms is followed by a description

of the various makes and models, arranged alphabetically under each arms manufacturer.

An outline of the development is given of each weapon, followed by all the relevant

technical information. This is further clarified with color photographs and illustrations.

The most common makes and models are included in this book, and the latest developments

and new product releases are also described in detail. For example, there is a description

of the new Chiappa Rhino revolvers. This pistol was introduced in 2011 in three different

barrel lengths. Other examples of recent developments include the remake of the 1911 �A1

from Remington and the latest models of Smith & Wesson in 2011. At the end of this

enc)·clopedia )'OU will find a very detailed and illustrated glossary of terms. This gives a clear

dejininon of all the technical terms which are used in the book. I greatly enjoyed writing
· nd I hope char che reader will enjoy it every bit as much.

The Pistol 4

The Revolver 176

Rifles and Longarms 189

Sporting and Combat Shotguns 384

Machine Guns 480

Submachine Guns 498

Acknowledgements 512

An A-Z of pistols and revolvers


AMT stands for Arcadia Machine & Tools Inc. The

company has gone through a turbulent period. Initially,
AMT was established in Covina, California. It became
famous with the AutoMag pistol in .44 AutoMag and
.357 AutoMag. In 1989, the factory moved and
Agner M80 changed its name to !AI: Irwindale Arms Incorporated.
.22 caliber New models were given the name !AI, though the old
match pistol In 1983 the Danish models continued to be called AMT. A few years ago,
firm Saxhoj Products the company got into difficulties. After a new start,
introduced the compe­ production continued under the name Galena
tition Agner M80. This Industries Inc. The company is still located in
was designed by the Irwindale, California. In the period 1965-1969, the
Danish sport shooter, American designer Harry W. Sanford designed a large
Bent Agner. The single-action heavy pistol. It had a completely new caliber: .44 AMP,
weapon is made of Swedish stainless steel. It has the abbreviation for AutoMag Pistol. He marketed this
a number of curious characteristics. The safety catch pistol in 1969 under the name AutoMag. The auto
is actually a small key which has to be placed in loader has a rotating bolt with six locking cams. The
a hole on the left of the weapon. The key can be locking system is similar to that of the Colt M16 Rifle.
pressed in, and then works as a magazine catch. In Sanford's small gun shop was extended to become the
addition, the key can be turned from Safe to Fire. The AutoMag Corporation (AMC). Special ammunition
trigger is completely adjustable and this not only made for the AutoMag was manufactured by a Mexican
applies for the trigger pressure, but also for the trigger subsidiary of Remington, the Cartouches Deportivos de
pull, the trigger stop, and even the position of the
trigger. The walnut grips of the weapon have an
adjustable hand rest.
Obviously, it also has an accurately adjustable
micrometer sight. The total length of this 10-shor
match pistol is 257 mm (10 in), and the barrel length
is 150 mm (6 in). The sight radius (the distance
between the rear sight and the front of the bead is
220 mm (8';4 in). The pistol weighs 1120 g (39Yz oz).
The Agner M80 was produced up to approximately

AMT logo

A comprehensive explanatory


The usual abbreviation for 'Automatic Colt Pistol' for

particular calibers of ammunition. Examples of this are
.25 ACP (6.35 mm), .32 ACP (7.65 mm), .380 ATP
(9 mm Short) and .45 ACP.
ACP is short for Automatic Colt Pistol