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Thread: EXTREMELY ODD antique handgun

  1. #1
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    so today the wife and me went to a gunshow in milwaukee. We ran across a display there that had a sign that said:

    WHAT IS THIS?

    unfortunately i didn't have a camera to take a picture of it, so i'll describe it as best as i can. if it is at the waukesha gun show next weekend i'll try to take a picture.


    It had a small display stand with a small "cradle" on one side that the barrel rested in. it was in the size and shape of a antique handgun. looked to be of asian decent. the grip ended in a dragons head. the barrel looked like a small cannon that was sitting on the top of the grip body. the entire "firing mechanism" (all moving parts) was externally mounted to the outside of the body. and then on each side of this "handgun" there were little tubes mounted to the display stand with the "ammunition". one of them was a steel tip "arrow" with a wooden body, and the other was a steel tip "arrow" with a glass body. both of them were approximately 3-4" long.

    the person allowed me to handle this gun and from looking at it, and very carefully moving the mechanism just a little bit, i almost have the feeling it was a cross between a dart gun/crossbow/handgun. almost like you loaded the guns into the cannon looking barrel and then a little blade came down from the top of the barrel to hold the arrow in place. then when you pulled the trigger, it looked like the mechanism would somehow release the arrow via a little springloaded rod that connected from the external mechanism to the inside of the barrel.


    i'm sorry if that sounds very very confusing, but i'll try to answer any questions as best as i can. and i will try my best to make it to that gun show this coming weekend and see if it's there again and take a picture.


    but does anybody have any idea of what that might be or have some pictures or knowledge of anything that matches that description???

  2. #2
    Founder's Club Member Hawkflyer's Avatar
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    Puts me in mind of an old folk song -

    It went zip when it moved and pop when it stopped,
    Whirrr when it stood still
    I never knew just what it was and I guess I never will.

    It would be a miracle if anyone could identify this from just the description. Lets wait for the picture.

    Regards
    "Research has shown that a 230 grain lead pellet placed just behind the ear at 850 FPS results in a permanent cure for violent criminal behavior."
    "If you are not getting Flak, you are not over the target"
    "186,000 Miles per second! ... Not just a good idea ... It's the law!"

  3. #3
    Regular Member rodbender's Avatar
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    Sounds like a "draw" to me.
    The thing about common sense is....it ain't too common.
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    rodbender wrote:
    Sounds like a "draw" to me.
    ???

  5. #5
    Regular Member lonewolf2810's Avatar
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    sure would like to see this thing. Take a picture.

  6. #6
    Regular Member Dreamer's Avatar
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    This sounds like some sort of modern "fantasy" weapon. Was it actually functional?

    What sort of lockwork did it have? Flintlock, matchlock, wheellock, percussion, what?

    Did it have a lot of brass or bronze on it? Was it shiney? What did the barrel look like--round, octagonal, steel, iron, bronze, damascus?

    Pictures would be great...

    But from the description, I think this might be a non-functional, modern "fantasy" repro from someone like Denix...
    It is our cause to dispel the foggy thinking which avoids hard decisions in the delusion that a world of conflict will somehow mysteriously resolve itself into a world of harmony, if we just don't rock the boat or irritate the forces of aggression—and this is hogwash."
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  7. #7
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    Dreamer wrote:
    This sounds like some sort of modern "fantasy" weapon. Was it actually functional?

    What sort of lockwork did it have? Flintlock, matchlock, wheellock, percussion, what?

    Did it have a lot of brass or bronze on it? Was it shiney? What did the barrel look like--round, octagonal, steel, iron, bronze, damascus?

    Pictures would be great...

    But from the description, I think this might be a non-functional, modern "fantasy" repro from someone like Denix...

    from my best opinion, it definitely didn't look like anything modern or fantasy. like i said, it looked VERY ANTIQUE.

    not trying to sound like a dick, but if you could perhaps read over my description again, i know it's hard to picture, but i tried to describe the mechanism and barrel as best as i could.

    I will try to get a picture of it if i can.

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    sorry i noticed a typo that i made that may have added to the confusion, so i tried to correct it. the correction is in red


    scorpio_vette@hotmail.com wrote:

    It had a small display stand with a small "cradle" on one side that the barrel rested in. it was in the size and shape of a antique handgun. looked to be of asian decent. the grip ended in a dragons head. the barrel looked like a small cannon that was sitting on the top of the grip body. the entire "firing mechanism" (all moving parts) was externally mounted to the outside of the body. and then on each side of this "handgun" there were little tubes mounted to the display stand with the "ammunition". one of them was a steel tip "arrow" with a wooden body, and the other was a steel tip "arrow" with a glass body. both of them were approximately 3-4" long.

    the person allowed me to handle this gun and from looking at it, and very carefully moving the mechanism just a little bit, i almost have the feeling it was a cross between a dart gun/crossbow/handgun. almost like you loaded the AMMO (the little wood/glass dart looking pieces) into the cannon looking barrel and then a little blade came down from the top of the barrel to hold the arrow in place. then when you pulled the trigger, it looked like the mechanism would somehow release the arrow via a little springloaded rod that connected from the external mechanism to the inside of the barrel.

  9. #9
    Regular Member XD40coyote's Avatar
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    Sounds like a VERY old Chinese "gun". I've already seen 2 shows on this stuff on the History Channel...

    I believe these VERY old "guns" fired shrapnel at close range, then later the lead balls ( shows were a while ago and I have sketchy memory despite my encyclopedic brain...)

    When the Eurpeans first got their hands on these, the small ones were called "hand gonnes".

    The ancient Chinese also had some interesting crossbows too.

    Without pics, no one can tell if this thing you saw was a genuine very old Chinese "gun", crossbow thing, replica, or modern fantasy device. If it was indeed an orginal very old Chinese "gun" or crossbow thing, it is worth ALOT of money.

  10. #10
    Regular Member Alexcabbie's Avatar
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    Sounds like something Rube Goldberg designed for Confucious.

  11. #11
    Founder's Club Member Hawkflyer's Avatar
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    scorpio_vette wrote:
    sorry i noticed a typo that i made that may have added to the confusion, so i tried to correct it. the correction is in red


    scorpio_vette@hotmail.com wrote:

    It had a small display stand with a small "cradle" on one side that the barrel rested in. it was in the size and shape of a antique handgun. looked to be of asian decent. the grip ended in a dragons head. the barrel looked like a small cannon that was sitting on the top of the grip body. the entire "firing mechanism" (all moving parts) was externally mounted to the outside of the body. and then on each side of this "handgun" there were little tubes mounted to the display stand with the "ammunition". one of them was a steel tip "arrow" with a wooden body, and the other was a steel tip "arrow" with a glass body. both of them were approximately 3-4" long.

    the person allowed me to handle this gun and from looking at it, and very carefully moving the mechanism just a little bit, i almost have the feeling it was a cross between a dart gun/crossbow/handgun. almost like you loaded the AMMO (the little wood/glass dart looking pieces) into the cannon looking barrel and then a little blade came down from the top of the barrel to hold the arrow in place. then when you pulled the trigger, it looked like the mechanism would somehow release the arrow via a little springloaded rod that connected from the external mechanism to the inside of the barrel.
    It is not the description that is the problem. I think we all read it a few times. It is the lack of a picture that is the issue. Or as they say where this object was probably made -

    No "Picky" no Answer.
    "Research has shown that a 230 grain lead pellet placed just behind the ear at 850 FPS results in a permanent cure for violent criminal behavior."
    "If you are not getting Flak, you are not over the target"
    "186,000 Miles per second! ... Not just a good idea ... It's the law!"

  12. #12
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    well unfortunately i didn't see that person at the gun show today, so as of right now i do not have any pictures. but i will do my best to get back in touch with that person, so as to get a picture of it that i can post here. give me a little more time.

  13. #13
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    From your description of how it operates, I'd say it sounds like a handheld dart gun. Not a firearm at all. The wooden/glass bodies of theprojectiles would have shattered if propelled by exposive powder.

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