Talk:Improvised firearm

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject Firearms (Rated B-class, Low-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Firearms, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of firearms on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
B-Class article B  This article has been rated as B-Class on the project's quality scale.
Checklist icon
 Low  This article has been rated as Low-importance on the project's importance scale.

Zip gun merger[edit]

I have expanded this article, and since the term "improvised firearm" is a superset of "zip gun", and gets round the issues of high quality, though illicit, firearms such as home-built SMGs and the cell phone gun, I think it makes sense to merge zip gun into this article, and I've done the expansion with that goal in mind.

Comments here, please. scot (talk) 20:51, 19 June 2008 (UTC)

Agree. However the merge tags were not placed correctly. Wait seven more days, and if there are no objections proceed with the merge as per the guidelines: "If there is clear agreement with the proposal by consensus, or if there is silence, proceed with the merger." SilkTork *YES! 00:20, 6 July 2008 (UTC)

"Improvised Munitions"[edit]

Excerpt from Dan Brown's book Deception Point, page 284:

"...As someone with military clearance, Rachel was well acquainted with the new experimental "IM" weaponry-Improvised Munitions-snow rifles that compacted snow into ice pellets, desert rifles that melted sand into glass projectiles, water-based firearms that shot pulses of liquid water with such force that they could break bones. Improvised Munitions weaponry had an enormous advantage over conventional weapons because IM weapons used available resources and literally manufactured munitions on the spot, providing soldiers unlimited rounds without their having to carry heavy conventional bullets. The ice balls being fired at them now, Rachel knew, were being compressed "on demand" from snow fed into the butt of the rifle."

I don't know where Dan Brown got his source for this if there's any truth to it but perhaps it could be incorporated into the article somehow if it can verified. OlEnglish (talk) 01:28, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

Projectiles are the least of your worries with firearms; the issue has always been one of propellant, which requires specific chemicals (specifically nitric acid) which are dangerous to make and use. Airguns are the exception to this, but they are very limited in power, velocity, and are very bulky. Even in the days of flintlock muskets, where airguns had significant advantages in rate of fire and reduced noise and smoke, they still never caught on as anything but a curiosity or a small game rifle. The airgun carried by Lewis and Clark, for example, was a 10mm model capable of 22 aimed shots in under one minute, compared to around 3 shots in a minute from a musket; German and Austrian militaries did field small numbers of similar magazine fed air guns of similar specifications, capable of firing dozens of shots from one charge of the air reservoir in the buttstock.
Lead can be, and often was, scavenged and used to cast musket balls, and if you look at antique firearms, particularly pistols, they often came cased with a bullet mold sized to the firearm's bore. A smoothbore musket can fire just about anything that will fit down the bore, but only consistent, highly dense materials (i.e. lead spheres) are effective at any but the closest range. Ice bullets, for example, can be made (see MythBusters_(2003_season)#Magic_Bullet and MythBusters_(2004_season)#Ice_Bullet_.28AKA_Magic_Bullet_2.29), but they are too weak and brittle to survive firing. A typical handgun bullet accelerates from 0 to nearly the speed of sound in a matter of about two inches, with a force of 20,000 to 40,000 pounds per square inch; that's an acceleration on the order of tens of thousands of times the force of gravity, and is enough to squish even copper jacketed, hardened lead bullets enough to expand them to fit an oversized bore (see obturate). Rifle bullets work at even higher pressures and accelerations, and require proportionately stronger bullets. Add in the fact that a bullet out of a rifled barrel is going to be spinning at up to 200,000 rpm, and your choices for suitable bullet materials are quite limited. scot (talk) 16:30, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

Dan Brown's "IM" firearms are entirely fictional, and not in the least plausible. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:25, 10 May 2009 (UTC)

Harlan Ellison[edit]

"Author Harlan Ellison describes the zip guns used by gangs in New York City".
This is "used in the 1950s", right? If so, article should clarify this. -- (talk) 19:08, 1 February 2009 (UTC)


IIRC, there have been reports of improvised suppressors (aka silencers) turning up in the various trouble spots. I think a short subsection detailing them may be of some value. If anyone has some reliable sources, that would help get it started. Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 23:54, 14 January 2010 (UTC)

Sten Machine Gun section[edit]

In the Sten Machine Gun section there is a passage that reads

Much like the previously mentioned FP-45 "Liberator" pistol of World War 2, it could be discarded during an escape with no substantial loss for the force's arsenal. The MP2 is a blowback-operated weapon that fires from an open bolt with an extremely high rate of fire. A similar weapon of Guatemalan origin is the SM-9.

I've read the article through several times, but I haven't noticed any previous mention of the FP-45

Perhaps the original author meant to take another look at this article and make an addition of some sort?

Rampant unicorn (talk) 22:24, 10 July 2011 (UTC)

Sten Machine Gun costings[edit]

'Production was ... spread out to over 300 improvised production facilities throughout Britain. ... The initial production cost of the Sten was approximately US$12 per unit, and quickly dropped to US$8 with improvements in production techniques'

Why are we describing a gun designed and produced in Britain with costs given in USD? -- (talk) 08:31, 27 August 2011 (UTC)

(If the idea was as a comparator to the other guns mentioned in the next line, only one of those is American, so that would be as bad as describing it in terms of Reichsmark)

We try to describe all prices on Wikipedia as USD because most people known the conversion rate between their own currencies and USD. Fewer know the conversion rate between the GBP and their own currency. -- Derek Ross | Talk 18:49, 30 November 2014 (UTC)


The section titled "shotguns" seems unnecessary to me. It seems like it could easily be mentioned somewhere else. It is just such a minor facet and a small section that it does not seem to warrant having its own heading. Harryrunes (talk) 06:22, 8 July 2016 (UTC)