A Pistol with No Trigger

In the 1920s and 30s a famous Texas Ranger owned a set of pistols with no triggers. The guns are fired by cocking and releasing the hammers. Manuel Trazazas “Lone Wolf” Gonzaullas was a lifelong Texas Ranger and the first Ranger of Hispanic descent to rise to the rank of captain. Gonzaullas began his career in 1920 on horseback, combating bootlegging, bank robberies, narcotics trafficking, and prostitution. As Texas moved from its frontier past to a more urban future, he learned the modern techniques of scientific analysis and was instrumental in establishing one of the leading crime labs in the country at the Texas Department of Public Safety. After retiring from the Rangers in 1951, Gonzaullas moved to Hollywood and became a technical advisor to the entertainment industry. Many of the firearms Gonzaullas owned during his lifetime were opulently engraved, such as this pair of customized Single Action Armies. Read more »

Changing of the Guard Ritual – Arlington National Cemetery

The guard is changed every hour on the hour October 1 to March 31 in an elaborate ritual. From April 1 through September 30, there are more than double the opportunities to view the change because another change is added on the half hour and the cemetery closing time moves from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m.

An impeccably uniformed relief commander appears on the plaza to announce the Changing of the Guard. Soon the new sentinel leaves the Quarters and unlocks the bolt of his or her M-14 rifle to signal to the relief commander to start the ceremony. The relief commander walks out to the Tomb and salutes, then faces the spectators and asks them to stand and stay silent during the ceremony.

The relief commander conducts a detailed white-glove inspection of the weapon, checking each part of the rifle once. Then, the relief commander and the relieving sentinel meet

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Firearms in Outer Space

A conventional firearm would, under most circumstances, work perfectly well in space.

It’s true that there’s no oxygen in the abyss of space, but the firing of a gun doesn’t depend on oxygen even here on earth. Or, rather, it does, but not on the oxygen in the atmosphere.

The ammunition used in a typical gun consists of a bullet (the part that actually gets shot out of the gun), a casing filled with gunpowder (or cordite), and an explosive primer. The primer is ignited by the mechanical action of the hammer hitting its firing pin (or, in a rimfire cartridge, of the striker hitting the rim); this causes the powder to explode, sending the bullet flying down the barrel of the gun and out into the world. The gunpowder and explosive material in the primer already contain all the oxygen they need; they’ll ignite and burn quite happily with … Read more »

Smith & Wesson History

New Englanders Horace Smith and Daniel Wesson founded Smith & Wesson in 1852 with their first partnership based on the invention of the lever-action repeating pistol. Though the brand is world-famous, there are a few facts about the gun proprietors not everyone knows. The pair faced financial difficulties and was forced to sell their company to Oliver Winchester, a shirt manufacturer. Winchester took their design and created his own company — Winchester Repeating Arms Co.

Despite the setback for Smith and Wesson, the pair continued to produce firearms.
In 1856 Smith & Wesson produced a small revolver that was the first fully self-contained cartridge in the world, as recounted on the Smith and Wesson website.
Learning from their mistakes of the first partnership, the pair went on to secure patents for the Model One to protect their design and created a lucrative firearms business.

Other Smith & Wesson successes … Read more »

Hotel Security While Traveling

If you plan on travelling or vacationing this summer, remember that taking the proper precautions can save you a lot of trouble. When considering hotels and lodging, remember these tips:

-Do not discuss your business or travel plans in public areas where they may be overheard. Discuss your travel plans and movements during your stay with as few people as possible.

-Selecting a hotel room on the third to fifth floor generally will keep you out of reach of criminal activity from the street but still within reach of most fire truck ladders.

-Do not entertain strangers in your hotel room.

-Be alert to overly friendly locals who may have criminal intentions. They may offer to take you to a “special” restaurant. Their ruse may be to offer drugged refreshments.

-Never leave valuables in your hotel room exposed or unattended, even in a locked suitcase.

-Place valuables–money, jewelry, airplane … Read more »