If you’re like me, then you love classic and historical firearms. I firmly believe that WWII brought us the best firearms in terms of beauty coupled with innovation. After all, necessity is the mother of invention. There is just something that speaks to me about the warm wood and cold steel of an M-1 Garand. When you pick one up, you know you are holding a quality made precision instrument of war. It warms the soul. I’m not saying that I limit myself to these kinds of weapons, on the contrary I don’t own anything that I would call historic save for my S&W knockoff of a Walther PPK/S…. yet. All my guns are purchased for a perceived need and until those needs are met, I will not buy any of the ones that I really long for. You see, my humble arsenal is still growing, low paying military job coupled with wife-n-kids sorta does that to a guy. Truth be told, my collection will never be complete, there will always be something else out there that I want, be it rare, old, new, or just plain nifty. As with any item that you would look upon with greatness, one tends to soak up all that they can about said item. I remember a time when I was maybe 15-16 and my Dad’s friend from church brought over an Interarms PPK for us to borrow and try out. Well, of course, all the men in the house were huddled around the guy, passing the cool gun around. It finally came to my hands, first time ever holding this make/model, and I proceeded to safety check, and field strip it right then and there, much to the amazement of my dad. This is all from reading in books and magazines as a kid, youtube didn’t exist and the intrawebs were accessed by a 56k modem. It’s probably the mechanic in me, but I have a special fascination for small semi-automatic firearms. The smaller, the better. They can be like finely tuned Swiss watches.
There are many guns out there that I have a definite want for in my collection, and have never shot or even handled. Here’s a “short” list. Let’s start with rifles. Mosin M-44, Mauser K-98, Tokarev SVT-40, M-1 Garand, M-1A, M-1903A3, Arisaka, STG-44, M-1 Carbine. Handguns: Beretta 1934, Makarov, Tokarev TT-33, Nagant revolver, Webley revolver, Luger P.08, Walther P-38, Soviet PSM, Colt 1908 vest pocket model, Colt 1903. I know some of these aren’t from WWII, but are very historical pieces to me, therefore, I want. I am excited for the chance to shoot some of these classics. A new guy just got transferred to my shore duty and I was tasked with bringing him up to speed with our job and now we stand shift together. Turns out, this guy has some seriously fine taste. His collection includes, but is not limited to, an M-1 Garand, M1903, and an M-1A. We have set up a tentative range date, and words cannot describe the joy in my heart to hold these pieces of history. Lord only knows where they have been and what they have seen.
Are you peeking in my gun safe for inspiration?
The only piece of advice I have about getting that collection is to buy an example the second you have the money, even if it seems like a lot. I said to myself, “$400 is a lot of money,” about the SVT-40 so I passed on one. Years later and they’re $1,200 and it’s even MORE money.
I got lucky with my Colt 1903 Pocket Hammerless, but I am shocked at the prices for them. Be warned, once you have the 1903 you’ll want it’s 1908 big brother. Also, once you have both a 1908 Vest Pocket and a 1908 Pocket Hammerless you will be forever explaining which one is which.
I assumed you meant the .32 ACP Pocket Hammerless when you said 1903, but you could have meant the .38 ACP Pocket Hammer…
Here by way of Robb Allen.
I have an Arisaka, but it’s a T30 not the WW2 vintage T38/T99. I also have a Mosin 91/30 but the one I want is the 38. It is but one of the many on the “Guns I Want” list (I think I’d pick an M14 over an M1, but that’s just me).
I spent 20 years on carriers. I believe you call them “targets”.
Targets indeed… Welcome, and I agree with you on the M-14 over M-1A.
Here by way of Robb Allen. I spent 20 years on carriers, I think you call them “targets” (fair enough I guess, that’s what the P-3 guys call subs).
I have an Arisaka but it’s the wrong era (pre-WW1 T-30 carbine, not a WW2 T-38/99 variant). The M1 Garand (actually I think I’d prefer an M1A/M14) is on my “Guns I Want” list along with a Mosin M38 to go along with the 1943 model 91/30 I already have.