J. Jarre of Paris, France Harmonica Pinfire Pistol. Unserialized, 7.65mm caliber, 2 ¾-inch round barrel with octagonal base. Smoothbore. J. JARRE marked to left side of barrel and A PARIS to right side. Harmonica shaped 10-shot bar. Double action ring trigger. Smooth hardwood grip panels. Flat escutcheon butt.
Manufacture d’Armes de Saint-Etienne Modèle 1938 or MAS 38 for short. Chambered for the all steel jacketed 7.65×20mm Longue, it was produced prior to WW2 and went on to serve in the armies of the French third republic, the Vichy regime, the Free France Forces and Nazi Germany. This one was captured in 1944 from a German soldier and would have been designated as MP722(f). Although the receiver meets the barrel at an angle, this weapon was both reliable, accurate and very compact, a trait shared by many French submachine gun designs of the middle of the century.
Even before World War II, the French Army had experimented with military submachine guns. The French were perhaps more forward-thinking than the British Army in this regard. Both the French and the British had been offered the Thompson and both turned it down, but whereas the British Army dismissed the idea of submachine guns completely, the French began work on their own design called the MAS 35. It was chambered in 7.65x20mm. The prototypes were very basic and had simple tubular butt stocks with flat plates acting as shoulder pieces. The design was not adopted but instead improved upon as the MAS 38. The MAS 38 was unique in that the bolt actually traveled back into the stock at a tilted angle. The internal workings were very complicated and I will spare readers a full explanation.
The MAS 38. Designed at Saint-Étienne and chambered in 7.65mm. This was the standard French submachine gun in World War II.
Despite its unorthodox design, the MAS 38 was adopted as the standard French issue submachine gun. The low-powered cartridge meant that recoil was low and accuracy was good. The weapon was used throughout World War II by both the Free French and the Vichy regime, and would also be used post-war in France’s subsequent conflicts.
After the war it became apparent that submachine guns were more effective than most European militaries had anticipated. The Section Technique de l’Armée (the French equivalent of the Ordnance Board) commissioned the small arms factories at Châtellerault (MAC) and Saint-Étienne (MAS) to develop a new submachine gun in 9x19mm. STA felt that the 7.65mm cartridge was not powerful enough and opted for 9mm since almost every other European country had adopted it.
MAC developed their first prototype in 1947. It had a hinged magazine housing that would fold under the barrel. The magazines used were that of the MP-40. Internally, the return spring was actually located near the trigger mechanism and had a torsion action to it. The end of the spring was attached to a lever that came from a recess from within the bolt. When the bolt flew back, the return spring twisted and tightened.
The MAC 47. Despite a superficial resemblance to the Sten, it was internally nothing alike. The hinged lever underneath the trigger cocked the weapon.
The cocking system was also unusual. There was a lever that folded under the trigger on a hinge. Turning it downwards would cock the weapon. The folding buttstock was made of sheet metal and was considered very unergonomic because it was too large. The return spring system also lost tension after extended use. Another version of this prototype was made that had a wireframe stock and a perforated barrel jacket. The stock folded across the side of the weapon and a brace that ran across the middle of it would deliberately block the open ejection port to prevent it from being discharged in this configuration.
In 1948, MAC produced a new design. It had a cylindrical body and the internal action was based on the Sten gun, but with left-hand cocking. The magazine well was very long and doubled as a fore grip. MP-40 magazines were used. The safety was in the pistol grip and, rather unusually, the stock protruded from the bottom of the grip. Fixed to the side of the stock was a hinged steel plate that was designed for the firer to rest their right elbow on whilst firing from the hip. There was no fire selector on the initial prototypes but subsequent models had two triggers for automatic and semi-automatic fire. Ultimately the weapon was not all that accurate.
MAC produced a lightweight version of this weapon which was made almost exclusively from pressed steel. The wooden stock was replaced with a basic “tromboning” stock which was a simple retracting wireframe. This version was known as the SL and was produced in limited quantities. Those that were made were issued to French troops in Indo-China (now South-East Asia).
The MAC 48. The unusual stock did not align well with the bore and made aiming difficult. When fired from the hip, it was decent.
Meanwhile Saint-Étienne produced a series of prototypes called the C1, the C2, the C3, and the C4. They were all basically derived the same design and differed only in very minor ways. Development started in 1947 and by 1948, the final version known as the C4 had been produced. The action was very similar to the later H&K G3. It had a two-part, L-shaped bolt that ran through a tube over the barrel. The firing pin was fixed to the vertical arm of the bolt. Fitted underneath the long horizontal arm of the bolt, and in front of the shorter vertical arm, was a light bolt head, which was attached to a rotating lever. One end of the lever touched the bolt body and the other end sat in a recess in the weapon’s frame. When gas pressure was applied, the lever rotated, which accelerated the bolt. There was no conventional fire selector. Instead, the trigger was pressurized to give single shots at a half-pull and automatic fire at a full press.
Neither the MAC nor the MAS designs were adopted by the French Army and instead the MAT-49 was chosen.
The MAS 48 C4 in 9mm. The magazine housing, like many other French designs of the time, was hinged and folded under the barrel.
The MAS 49. Chambered in .30 Carbine. Note the long barrel and bipod.
The MAT 49. This was the weapon that was adopted by the French Army. It saw use in Algeria and Indo-China.
Other post-war French designs included the Gevarm D3, produced by ammunition firm Gevelot. It was a very basic Sten clone with a wooden stock and was never manufactured in any quantity. More interesting was the PM-9 produced by Societe Pour l’Exploration des Brevets MGD in 1954. The PM-9 was a very compact folding submachine gun. It is very hard to describe the internal action of the weapon. The bolt was a sort of rod that was connected to a flywheel on the rear end and the front end was connected to a crank that revolved 180 degrees when the bolt moved forward. When it reached the end of its travel, it returned 180 degrees in the opposite direction, upon which the next round would be chambered. When this happened, the flywheel on the rear end of the bolt would oscillate, cocking the weapon, which would then cause a spiral spring to tension and the move the bolt forward again. Very interestingly, the weapon′s fire rate could be changed by adjusting the tension of the spring.
The Gevarm D4 by Gevelot. This version had a retracting stock whereas the D3 had a fixed stock. Not many were made.
The PM-9 produced by MGD and later Erma. The high cost and complex mechanism ensured that it was a commercial failure.
The folded PM-9. In this configuration it was incredibly compact.
The PM-9 design was sold to Erma Werke in Germany in 1955. Erma had difficulty selling the weapon so they instead used its production as a training exercise for young employees. Each unit cost about $150 so production ceased quickly.
Reference Art for Drawing Guns
(Zoe, I made this mostly for you.)
Okay, to start off, I really like guns. I like handling them, shooting them, taking them apart, cleaning them, putting them back together, and just looking at them. (Let’s be honest, there are some really good looking guns out there.) But when it comes to drawing them, I usually fail miserably. So I thought I’d compile a list of some of the more common guns, either in pop culture or in the United States, and provide images of them as well as some information on the guns to give you a better picture(no pun intended)as to whether or not your character would use them. Now I know a lot of people are scared of guns, so I’ll try to make sure to put a trigger warning(no pun intended)in the tags.
Let’s start off with a handgun that you may not have seen before, but is very common in the United States, is very inexpensive, and is VERY easy to draw:
This ugly duckling is the Hi-Point C9. It fires the 9mm Luger cartridge, the cheapest and most prolific handgun ammunition in the country, and it can be had for around $150-$175 brand new. It’s not much to look at, but it gets the job done. Mocked by gun snobs for its relatively cheap construction, this gun represents function over form. This gun would NOT be owned by a character who has a lot of money, and it’s a fairly recent firearm so it wouldn’t be seen anytime before the 21st century. It’s also exclusively civilian owned. No police department or military would ever think of arming themselves with these.
One of the most iconic firearms of the 21st century, the Glock 17 is widely seen among civilians and police alike. Also chambered in 9mm Luger, it is the brainchild of Gaston Glock, an Austrian inventor who revolutionized the firearms industry. This gun is very common and has been around since the late 1980′s, so if you’re looking for a default go-to handgun for a contemporary setting, this is it.
The Beretta 92FS is the current issue sidearm of the U.S. military, and has served several law enforcement agencies for decades since the 1980′s. Favored by the likes of John McClane from “Die Hard,” it’s an elegantly designed 9mm pistol that has become one of the most recognizable firearms in the world. Again, like the Glock 17, very common, prolific, and contemporary.
This blued-steel beauty is the John Browning-designed Colt Model 1911A1 .45 caliber pistol. Firing a powerful .45 cartridge, it served as the primary service pistol for the U.S. military from 1911 until 1985 when it was replaced by the Beretta 92FS. Favored by real-life war hero Sergeant Alvin York and fictional war hero Captain America, this gun is still commonly owned in the United States today by mainly civilian owners, and is manufactured by countless firearms companies in many different finishes and configurations.
One of the most recognizable firearms in the world, the P-08 Parabellum, known more commonly as the “Luger,” was the standard issue sidearm of the German army from 1908 to 1938, and spawned the 9mm Luger cartridge which continues to be the best selling handgun cartridge in the United States. Although officially replaced by the Walther P-38 in 1938, the Luger was still used frequently by Nazi officers during World War II, hence its association with the Nazi Party. Highly prized by firearms collectors, the Luger is a very expensive pistol, often selling for well over $1,000. Characters who would use this pistol would most likely be wealthy.
The preferred pistol of James Bond, Peggy Carter and Sterling Archer, the Walther PPK is a classic, stylish, concealable, sexy handgun. First produced in 1931, the PPK was originally chambered in the .32 Auto(7.65mm Browning) cartridge, but was later re-chambered for the .380 Auto(9mm Short)when the gun was first produced in the United States. To this day, it remains a popular choice for U.S. civilians as a concealed carry handgun. This is a good gun for a character who needs a concealable, yet elegant firearm.
On the borderline adorable end of the scale, we have the diminutive “Baby Browning.” Chambered in .25 Auto(6.35mm Browning), this gun will fit anywhere on your person. While it doesn’t have much in terms of “stopping power,” being able to produce this pistol from a handbag/pocket/vest pocket/shirt pocket/garter belt makes it a very appealing firearm for those who don’t want to commit to carrying a full-sized handgun in a holster. Similar-sized pistols are produced today, but not with the same level of quality and longevity as the original, all-steel .25 pistols.
(Colt Detective Special [.38 Special caliber])
Ah, revolvers. Where would firearms history be without you? Not only are they the oldest surviving type of multi-shot handgun, but they are still alive and well and come in many shapes, sizes, and calibers. Small revolvers, like this Colt Detective Special, were often carried by(you guessed it)detectives, private investigators, and even your average concealed carry permit holder.
(Smith & Wesson Model 10 [.38 Special])
The Glock of its day, the Model 10 was seen in the holsters of thousands upon thousands of police officers and military personnel.
(Smith & Wesson Model 29[.44 Magnum])
“…you’ve gotta ask yourself a question: ‘Do I feel lucky?’ Well do ya, punk?!” Yes, this was the gun carried by San Francisco’s most (in)famous fictional cop, “Dirty Harry” Callahan. Believe it or not, Smith & Wesson hardly sold any .44 Magnums at all until “Dirty Harry” hit the screens in 1971. After that, the prices on them skyrocketed, and S&W could hardly keep up with production.
(Smith & Wesson .500 Magnum)
This gun is all about dick-waving, pure and simple. An enormous, expensive gun firing a gigantic, almost uncontrollable .500 Magnum cartridge, the only people who use this gun for serious purposes are people who practice handgun hunting. Anyone else who owns one most likely has a phallus smaller than the “i” in this font.
(IWI Desert Eagle[.50 AE])
Created in 1873, the Colt Single Action Army(AKA the “Peacemaker”)was the gun that forever embodied the Old West. Owned by lawman and outlaw alike, the Colt SAA was, and still is, offered in a variety of finishes, barrel lengths, calibers and grip frames. The most common caliber you will find is the .45 Long Colt cartridge, hence the proliferation of the colloquial term for the gun, “Colt .45.”
Of course, in the Old West, once you got past 10 yards, things started to get a little harder to hit. Which is why lever-action rifles are just as prominent in Western folklore. Rifles like the Winchester 1873 and Model 94(pictured above)are some of the more common.
Of course, what discussion on the Old West wouldn’t be complete without the(arguably)most effective of the bunch: shotguns. Double-barreled “coach guns,” like the one pictured above, were extremely effective at close range. In fact, stagecoach drivers would often have a “shotgun messenger” sitting next to them in case the coach came under attack, hence the origin of the phrase “riding shotgun” when sitting next to the driver in a car.
The “Baby Browning” of its day, “Derringers” were small pistols utilizing multiple barrels to fire anywhere between one and four cartridges, depending on the caliber. The popular image of Derringer pistols is often that of a scantily-clad showgirl, prostitute, or femme fatale producing a Derringer out of their undergarments. Derringers are still popular among concealed carry permit holders today, and are offered in much more powerful cartridges, such as the Bond Arms Defender(pictured above)chambered in .45 Long Colt and .410 bore shotgun cartridges.
Bolt-action hunting rifles are the Bread-and-Butter of American hunting. Every fall, thousands of Americans chase trophy deer with a bolt-action hunting rifle slung over their shoulder. Often seen with a scope mounted on top, these kinds of guns are extremely common and can be found in pretty much any household that owns more than one gun.
Pump-action shotguns are just as common as bolt-action rifles. Available with easily interchangeable barrels and magazine tubes, pump-action shotguns can be used for anything from duck hunting to skeet shooting to home defense to military and police service depending on its configuration.
One of the most misunderstood firearms by the anti-gun lobby, the AR-15 is a semi-automatic version of the M-16/M-4 pattern military rifle. Owned by countless firearms enthusiasts and law enforcement agencies, the AR pattern rifle typically has a 30-round magazine that fires a .223 caliber cartridge which, while loud and powerful, produces very little felt recoil, and is thus very popular among female shooting enthusiasts. While the rifle alone produces images of crime among those with anti-gun sentiments, high-capacity semi-automatic rifles like the AR-15(often dubbed incorrectly as “assault weapons” by the media)are only used in a fraction of a percent of violent crime.
The Soviet Union’s counterpart to the M-16, the AK-47 also has countless semi-automatic variations in civilian hands in the United States. Mocked by many AR-15 enthusiasts for being comparatively crude, the reliability and proliferation of the AK pattern rifle is undeniable.
Another one of the most recognizable firearms ever made, the Thompson Sub-machine Gun(AKA the “Tommy Gun,” the “Chopper,” the “Chicago Typewriter”)was a fully-automatic beast that fired anywhere from 20 to 50 rounds of .45 caliber ammunition at a rate of around 850 rounds per minute. Popularly seen in the Gangster era of the 1920′s and 1930′s, the Tommy Gun has since been relegated to museums and private collections of Class III firearms following the establishment of the National Firearms Act of 1934 to limit the spread of fully-automatic firearms. If your character has one, they’re either in the 1920′s, or they’re RICH. Like REALLY RICH.
This is nowhere near a complete list, but these were some of the more common examples I could think of. Happy drawing!
By the late 1940’s, the French Army’s supply of submachine guns included an oddball collection of aging French made MAS-38’s, American Thompsons, British Stens, and captured German MP-40’s. By 1948, with conflicts heating up within France’s disintegrating colonial empire, it was decided that the military needed a new indigenously produced submachine gun. Developed by French arms factory Manufacture Nationale d'Armes de Tulle (MAT), the new MAT-49 was a weapon that was simple yet effective on the battlefield. Utilizing a blowback operated open bolt, it had a firing rate of around 600 rounds per minute. It was chambered in 9mm Para, thus maintaining common caliber with other NATO countries and doing away with the unusual 7.65mm Longue. For desert use it used a 20 round magazine specially designed to tolerate harsh desert conditions. In standard format it used a 32 round magazine. The magazine well itself had a grip machined into it to use as a forward grip. Most interestingly, the magazine well could fold up making it more compact for storage, transport, or during paratrooper jumps. Most of the submachine gun is produced from machine stamped steel, thus making it a cheap and easy weapon to produce but durable and simple. The grip incorporates a grip safety, meaning the weapon can only be fired when the grip is held. The stock is produced with collapsible wire, when can be retracted when not in use.
Produced of the MAT-49 began in 1949, and was immediately issued for use in France's numerous colonial wars as colonies made their bids for independence. It was used heavily during the Algerian War and the Indochina War. It was used especially heavily during the Indochina War (Vietnam) where it was ideal for use in the heavy jungles of Southeast Asia. After France’s defeat in the Indochina War, the Viet Minh captured a number of MAT-49’s. Many were converted to fire 7.62x25 Tokarev, a caliber which was commonly supplied by the Soviet Union and China. A number of domestic copies were also produced by North Vietnam and the Vietcong. Thus, the MAT-49 also became a common weapon used during the Vietnam War as well. France discontinued production of the MAT-49 in 1979 with the adoption of the FAMAS assault rifle.
Three days after the Erfurt massacre committed by Robert Steinhäuser, on April 29, 2002, 17-year-old Dragoslav Petkovic murdered the history teacher outside his school and injured another teacher with a 7.65mm handgun before committing suicide in the first school shooting in Bosnian history. He left behind a suicide note in his room that explained how thankful he was for his parents and preferences for burial, but nothing regarding his motive. The letter only concluded with:
First produced in 1933, the Mauser Standard Modell was a short version of the GEW 98 which was used by Germany during World War I. At the time, the Versailles Treaty restricted Germany from producing standard size rifles, so only short rifles and carbines could be manufactured. Of course, carbines and short rifles would become the standard of World War II, with long rifles becoming quaint in terms of military technology. The Standard Modell featured a GEW 98 action with a barrel shortened 23.62 inches. A carbine version 21.65 inch barrel. It was called the “Standard Modell” because due to its length it was proper to be issued to both infantry and cavalry soldiers. The top of the receiver featured the Mauser logo, while the side of the receiver was stamped “Standard Modell”.
The Mauser Standard Modell was not intended for domestic sale or military use, rather it was produced primarily as an export good. Most customers were private security forces, guards, and police forces. While primarily chambered for 8x57 Mauser, they were also produced in 7mm and 7.65mm for sale in Spain and Latin American countries. By far the largest buyer of the Standard Modell was China, either purchased by the Chinese National Army or the many warlords that dominated the country. The Chinese also produced their own copies called the Type 24 Chiang Kai-Shek rifle.
If the Mauser Standard Modell looks a lot like the Karabiner 98k rifle used by the German Army during World War II, that’s because the Standard Modell was almost identical to the K98k, and considered its direct forerunner. While the Standard Modell was mostly exported, it allowed the rapidly growing German arms industry to gain production experience, and little needed to be done to retool German factories to produce the K98k.