And here's a REALLY odd duck...

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And here's a REALLY odd duck...

Post by Piero on Sat 29 Aug 2009 - 16:21

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f5/LM4free.jpg/300px-LM4free.jpg

This gun in the picture linked to above is a Semmerling LM4. It's a very rare mini pistol that was designed to overcome the issues normally associated with mini-pistols -namely their small calibre and unreliable operation (supposedly at least -the latter becomes a tad questionable in light of a later development). Despite it's appearance, the pistol is not an automatic -it's a manual repeater that's designed so that it can be cycled one handed. This is apparently done by hooking the thumb over the top of the gun and pushing the slide forward, then back. Fire rate is reported to be about one round per second.

What this unusual system apparently allowed the designer to do was make a .45 with a 3.45 inch barrel and a four round magazine fit into a package 5.2 inchs long, 3.7 inchs tall, and 0.85 inchs wide (with thin grips) and still have it operate reliabely. Or, to put things in perspective, the gun was a .45 that was significantly smaller then a Walther PPK. It was however extremely heavy for it's size, which apparently wasn't actually such a bad thing given the recoil.

Apparently there was also an automatic variation called an XLM that was only built for government contract. The existence of this version was recently confirmed when a large collection of Semmerlings became museum donations. It reportedly used the friction of the bullet travelling down the barrel to cycle the weapon. No idea how the hell it managed to do that or how well it worked though.

Piero

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