back to article Bond's Walther PPK goes digital: A civilized gun updated

It's the details that embellish James Bond's character: the martini, the Aston Martin, the Walther PPK. A bit of a handbag gun really ... but there's no point telling people We’re talking about an individual from a certain social background, somebody who possesses a deliberate and definite sense of choice and taste. But …

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  1. Neil Barnes Silver badge
    Boffin

    deficient in... ammo capacity

    Surely irrelevant: everybody knows that film weapons *never* run out of ammo unless the plot requires it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      But

      A Walther PPK in the right hands can still put a round through the brain of the bad guy. Once shot in this way the bad guy will lose all interest in the things going on around him.

  2. bobbles31

    Seriously though

    I am curious, is this sort of thing a self generating Media frenzy or do the picture companies drip feed you ideas for stories to promote their films?

  3. Sir Runcible Spoon
    Joke

    Sir

    Complaints about the PPK being underpowered should be put in the tray ear-marked for complaints that the starboard Nacelle's* on the Enterprise D couldn't fit properly with the collector array - certainly not when it's been modified for time travel at any rate.

    *Fuktifiknow

  4. JDX Gold badge

    Why always FakeOS?

    It's pretty rare to see a real-looking OS on TV - maybe some nix if they're 'hacking'. Is this due to licensing, or what?

    I mean in contemporary TV, not sci-fi set in 2200.

    1. wowfood

      Re: Why always FakeOS?

      Just give the hackers a really simple version of linux. Mostly console access etc.

      But the real question should be why is it some of these fantasy OS's look better than some real OS's?

      1. dotslash

        Re: Why always FakeOS?

        because something which looks good and fancy often isn't very user friendly

        1. The First Dave
          Mushroom

          Re: Why always FakeOS?

          And Windows 8 _is_ user friendly? (Not to mention most Linux variants).

          1. JDX Gold badge

            Re: Why always FakeOS?

            Well touch-based has been a staple of sci-fi for a while. Forget minority-report, Stark's GUI in Iron Man is pretty lovely.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I like these articles.

    They are interesting. I know sod all about pistols etc myself, but assume that its all down to stealth.

  6. Don Jefe
    Boffin

    P99 & Silenced .45

    I trialed a Walther P99 for two days and 400 rounds. It truly is a finely engineered firearm but even with the nifty interchangable grips it just felt odd in my hand.

    Also the "silenced" .45 is an insane idea. Even the HK Mark 23 Mod0 that is used by U.S. Navy SEALS & is designed with a protruding threaded barrel requires a "silencer" almost 11" long and 1.5" diameter. Even if ammunition is subsonic the noise generated is directly related to size of the casing & pressure generated.

    Even specialty subsonic ammo like the Winchester or Arigula. In .22LR require really large supressors & make the firearm awkward to hold & aim.

    At the end of the day firearm supressors are only useful if you have to kill everyone & anyone in the area. It doesn't make you "silent" like in the movies, it may give you a few more seconds to escape.

    SMG's, long range rifles, shotguns & explosives are far more effective than sneaking in with a 1m long pistol.

    1. Scroticus Canis
      Boffin

      Re: P99 & Silenced .45

      Agree with most of what you said but silencer that is only 1.5" wide is damned slim; only useful for .22LR or short. You can shorten a moderator by increasing the width to provide the volume necessary to adsorb the muzzle gas. Had access to a PAM sub-machine gun 9mm with a 18" x 3.5" tube, with Federal 147grain HP (subsonic, kicks like a .45) the loudest noise was the flying bolt clacking back and forth.

      Personally I like Walthers for a carry gun (have had three; one PPK 9mmK and two TPH .22LR) OK for self defense but wouldn't want it as the primary in a firefight situation. Remmington pump 12 gauge with Brenneke solids works best for that (and bush pigs).

      My 6" Python .357 was my favorite play gun and good for 100m with accuracy. The best serious carry gun was my H&K P7 M8 9mm, great point and extremely accurate due to fixed barrel. Never jammed; even with some weird hand loads like THVs clocking 2,500 fps. For the aficionados these were turned brass heads at 50 grains (not the standard 115 or 125 for 9mmP) with a compressed fast powder load (11grains shotgun powder) - seriously hot with massive muzzle flash.

      Ah the good old days, all gone now though.

    2. Ian Michael Gumby
      Black Helicopters

      @Don Jefe Re: P99 & Silenced .45

      I tried the P99 I have to agree, it felt weird along with the HK.

      I'll stick with my Sig P226 any day. I have bigger hands so I want a gun that fits my hand. The Sig fits. (I'll skip on the E2 frame)

      I've also shot the 220 and some of their 1911 models. Sweet!

      With respect to a suppressed 1911, its not insane. Your .45 is a large slower moving slug. You could go sub sonic and the suppressor would help. Note that it won't 'silence' the weapon, but it will reduce its signature to the point where you don't need hearing protection.

      Suppressors are very good when you want to reduce your muzzle flash, recoil, and noise.

      From a civilian perspective... varmint control. (Coyotes and Deer)

      Just saying

  7. Jon Double Nice

    "No Country for Old Men"

    Now that is one seriously shat film.

  8. bitten
    Terminator

    Manly? The Fort Hood shooting was done with a .22, less than the Beretta .25 and all the others. Any gun becomes lethal once you start shooting.

    1. Ken 2

      The Fort Hood shooter used a FN Five Seven which fires 5.7×28mm ammunition. Technically a .22, but then so is an M16 firing 223 ammo. It's the cartridge powering the bullet that makes a difference. In this case 5.7×28mm ammunition can be loaded to penetrate body armor, and in fact that's what it was designed for.

      To your point though, any bullet can be deadly, even one fired from an air rifle.

      1. Ian Michael Gumby
        Boffin

        FN Five Seven

        You have to look at the bullets themselves. FN makes two rounds. One for civilians, one for military. The military have steel cores. That's what will penetrate body armor.

    2. Alan Esworthy
      Paris Hilton

      Less only in diameter

      The Ft. Hood shooter used a center-fire cartridge with a lot more power than the much more common .22 rim-fire. Even so, the .22 LR has a muzzle energy of about 100 ft-lbs and the .25, even though a center-fire cartridge, has a muzzle energy of about 73 ft-lbs.

      For comparison, the .44 Magnum has a muzzle energy over 1,000 ft-lbs.

      And no, I'll not use joules. Do the conversion yourselves.

      (Paris because of her muzzle energy.)

  9. Tim Jenkins

    The Bible to be Read as Literature

    When we meet Bond in Casino Royale (book*, not film) he is carrying the .25 Beretta (a model 418, made even thinner by having the grip panels removed and the resulting gaps taped over, and with the foresight sawn off). For someone routinely trying to conceal a firearm under formal evening wear, this does not seem an unreasonable choice, and it's worth noting he never fires it during the course of the plot. It's his failure to be able to draw it from its "flat chamois leather holster" at the end of From Russia, with Love that causes its retirement (and a rather painful shin injury) rather than any lack of stopping power.

    *Any true Bond fan, should, of course, regard the books as the prime source; a completely lost world where a real man would drink a pint of spirits, smoke 80 high strength cigarettes, consume departmental-issue Benzedrine in champagne to prepare for a night of high-stakes baccarat and then survive an hour of carpet-beater-to-the-genitals questioning. And people call Daniel Craig a tough guy...

  10. Matt Bryant Silver badge
    Flame

    ".....and admits to Moonraker being his favorite 007 film...."

    Fire him. NOW!

    1. jjk
      Mushroom

      Re: ".....and admits to Moonraker being his favorite 007 film...."

      My thought exactly. How did they let this guy anywhere near the franchise?

    2. Irongut

      Re: ".....and admits to Moonraker being his favorite 007 film...."

      Yeah that was my thought too. Any person that says Moonraker is their favourite Bond film should not be allowed to work on a Bond film.

      Mind you I'd prevent anyone who thinks Bond is English working on it too so I probably wouldn't be able to get the film made.

      1. JDX Gold badge

        Re: ".....and admits to Moonraker being his favorite 007 film...."

        MR is wonderful. Mainly for Jaws.

  11. jake Silver badge

    The wife's primary pistol of choice ...

    ... is a Kimber Custom .45 (Model 1911 variation, for those not in the know[1]). We have several S&W Model 19s in .357 scattered about the Ranch, in gun safes, with a couple variants of ammo in speed loaders adjacent. If you need to shoot something, it's best to be serious about it ...

    The "Bond pistols" are all but useless, always have been, always will be. If that makes us "gun dorks", we'll accept the label. But at least we have a grasp of the reality of the real world.

    [1] I really feel sorry for you emasculated Brits.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...

      "I really feel sorry for you emasculated Brits."

      Because they don't have to carry their genetalia in external, metallic, death-dealing form?

      1. jake Silver badge

        @AC 11:07 (was: Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

        "Emasculate" is a transitive verb meaning "to weaken". It has nothing to do with genitalia. The British public has been weakened. It's not an individual thing, it's a social thing.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: @AC 11:07 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

          Are you kidding me? Definition no.1 in the Oxford English Dictionary: "(usually as adjective emasculated) deprive (a man) of his male role or identity". Nothing to do with genitalia, bollocks. And yeah, all thos European societies with fewer guns are sooo much weaker. Come on. I don't care if you like guns (I'm the AC above with the paranoied grandad), I was just wondering what the "need" is.

          "Need" as in against infestation (I know people who keep high-power rifles in France because they get regularly invaded by wild boars). Any other "need" for a gun, and a handgun in particular, is either for fun (OK, why not, shooting shit IS fun), or through a misguided sense that it will help protect yourself (it won't), or because you are law enforcement and you need a gun for your job.

          1. jake Silver badge

            @AC: 11:40 (was: Re: @AC 11:07 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...))

            Learn to spell. Might help you comprehend English.

            As a side note, we have wild boar here in California.

      2. Dana W
        Meh

        Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...

        So how long have you thought of genitals a a weapon?

        And you think WE have problems?

    2. Sir Runcible Spoon

      Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...

      "[1] I really feel sorry for you emasculated Brits."

      No need. As long as we aren't involved in the criminal underground then the chances of us coming a cropper from being shot are a *lot* lower than 'masculated' Yanks.

      However, we are more likely to be shot by our own police for carrying a white stick.

      1. jake Silver badge

        @Mr. Spoon (was: Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

        I've never come a cropper from being shot by the criminal underground (whatever that is). Nor have I ever known anyone getting shot by the police for carrying a white stick.

        Methinks the "gun" thingie isn't the real societal problem ... look within.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...

      I feel sorry for Americans that think it is emasculating to have (some of) the world's highest firearm-crime and -accident rates. Dumbass.

      1. jake Silver badge

        @AC:11:09 (was: Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

        I've never actually been exposed to firearms crime. Or firearms accidents, either. Have you? Are you typing from the "I've been there, and done that" perspective, or from "the politicians TOLD ME SO!!!!" perspective? Seriously, think about it. If you are capable of thinking ...

        1. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: @AC:11:09 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

          Thankfully, us Brits don't have the rates of gun crime that the US does. There are some European countries where there are high levels of gun ownership and yet low levels of gun crime (though they they tend to have less of a wealth gap than the USA, and be more socially homogeneous) so it isn't just a case of more guns = more gun crime.

          However, here at the Reg we've heard of people not having the wits to use a sat nav safely... so it seems a bit of stretch to assume that everyone eligible to own a gun in the States has the wits to store and use it safely. I'm not saying all of Jake's compatriots are morons, but rather the US is home to wide spectrum of folk, from the brilliant to the Darwin Award-winning. Alas, it isn't always the idiot who gets hurt by their actions.

          I'm not sure why I should be pitied for not being allows to own a gun just to protect myself against idiots with guns. I rather like living in a country where guns are only owned by the police, farmers and rich people in Range Rovers who don't want to rob me. Oh, and I'm free to walk out of my house without carrying ID. Free. Okay, there are some idiots in the inner cities with guns, and some rough drug related violence in more semi-rural areas, but its mostly 'idiot on idiot' and doesn't bother me.

          And Jake, some of your posts can read as "You have a black horse? I have a blacker one, and have had since 1977!", which often distracts attention from any of your more valid points.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...

      <sarcasm>Indeed, masculinity is directly proportional to amount of guns owned and ammo fired.</sarcasm>

      But seriously, are you overrun with zombies to need that much armoury? The only person I know with more guns was my grandfather, and he was a hard-core white supremacist with serious paranoia issues (nearly shot my grandmother once, thought she was a gypsie). Not saying you are a white supremacist of course, just wondering about your "need to shoot something".

      1. jake Silver badge

        @AC: 11:09 (was: Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

        ::assumes patient mode:: Not zombies, no. Zombies don't actually exist. However, bears, mountain lions, rabid racoons, ground-squirrels, bobcats, feral dogs, rattlesnakes and meth-heads do. (I'll admit that the later do somewhat resemble the mythical zombie ...).

        Why does the British public assume use of guns automagically means "racist"? Honestly, the mind boggles. Guns are just tools. They can be used for good, or for evil. They are not inherently one or the other. Nor do they see the race of either the wielder or target.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: @AC: 11:09 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

          Hey Jake (sorry for AC BTW, work and all) I really don't mean to get on your nerves, I was just wondering why you would need so many guns, in particular handguns. The zombie bit was, as we say, a quip, not meant to be taken seriously. Range is shit, hard to shoot accurately, no spread compared to shot, and if they're in safes you won't get to it before the mountain lion gets to you, so in your use case I would carry a shotgun/rifle with me (or in the truck or whatever) if the wildlife is really that dangerous. (See? I'm not that anti-gun am I?)

          I did not assume you were racist, far from that, I only mentioned my experience of someone with a lot of guns (specifically, handguns), and even made the point that one did not imply the other, and vice-versa. Finally I am not a Brit, although I live there. Like you said guns are tools, and in the countryside where I come from it can be useful to have a rifle for when the boars decide your house might be a nice place to sleep in. What I do question is to have handguns peppered across your property (albeit in safes, careful user that you are), a handgun is made for one of two things: shooting at things for fun, or shooting at people. I actually enjoyed shooting at a range, but I wouldn't have handguns in my home (personal thing, having kids and all). And come on, if we can't take the piss of Americans whenever guns come up what are we gonna do for fun ;-)

        2. Evil Auditor Silver badge

          Re: @AC: 11:09 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

          @jake. Ground-squirrels, yeah, seriously dangerous animals. I usually fight them with the DE .50 </sarcasm>

          I do see your reasons for having fire arms around though. But your earlier reasoning why the "Bond pistols" are useless is nothing but warm dung. As you said, guns are tools. But what do you do with tools? You select the most suitable one for any given task. And when the task is to carry a gun concealed and still looking good in a dinner jacket then it will be a small pistol and not what you would choose to fend off large, rampant animals on your farm.

        3. mark 63 Silver badge

          Re: @AC: 11:09 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

          I dont mind being "weakened" or watever word you want to use - as long as everyone else is then we are all the same .

          there arnt any bears, mountain lions, rabid racoons, ground-squirrels, bobcats, feral dogs, rattlesnakes and meth-heads in the UK, so we dont need to defend against them.

          I'd like to have a gun, but not if that meant everyone else got one because i'd have no advantage , we'd be all 'even' again but with more firepower

        4. Robert Grant Silver badge

          Re: @AC: 11:09 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

          Firstly, the guy specifically said he wasn't saying you're racist.

          Secondly, can we please stop the DoubleSpeak of "guns are tools". Guns are within a subset of tools called "weapons". You might as well say, "Guns are objects, and nothing more!" It's specious rubbish.

          Weapons can be used as tools, recreational objects, murder implements, torture devices, or a combination thereof. If you say something to imply that everyone who owns a gun uses it responsibly as though it were a tool then you're daft, deluded or lying.

        5. Martin Silver badge
          WTF?

          Re: @AC: 11:09 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

          Given that it was your stupid crack about we Brits being emasculated that started the mini-flamewar, it ill becomes you to take on a so-called "patient mode".

          Guns are indeed just tools. Their primary purpose is to kill or maim. Strangely enough, that's why, in this country, most civilized people do NOT carry them. Even the criminals don't normally carry them - they don't feel they need to, either.

          And as a result, we have MASSIVELY fewer people killed with guns, either by accident or design.

          If that means, in your eyes, we have a "weakened society" - well, I'd argue with your label, but I am very happy with the society.

        6. Lamont Cranston
          Pint

          @jack

          I'd give it up, if I were you: the US and the UK really are separated by a lot more than just our common language (and a lot of fish).

          Here in the UK, the only people supposed to have guns are the police, the armed services, and gamekeepers (maybe sports shooters, also). Anyone else who has a gun has probably got it because they want to (or are about to) go and shoot something or someone up (gang violence, "going postal", etc.).

          Over in the USA, you have plenty of people who are not in the law, armed service, or gamekeeping professions, who also own guns. Therefore, extrapolating from experience, you must all be a load of trigger happy loonies, just itching for some meth addict to break down your door and "make your day". What's the alternative - do you all *really* enjoy shooting at paper targets?

          Enjoy your hobby - I added the beer icon to show no hard feelings, but beer's another thing that we probably won't agree on!

          P.S. guns as tools? Unless the job at hand is killing/wounding, you've probably picked the wrong tool for the job.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: @jack @Lamont Cranston

            >>Here in the UK, the only people supposed to have guns are the police, the armed services, and gamekeepers (maybe sports shooters, also). Anyone else who has a gun has probably got it because they want to (or are about to) go and shoot something or someone up (gang violence, "going postal", etc.).

            I own several weapons, mainly for sport shooting (and some vermin control), I'm lucky enough to live in a country with a great bunch or sports men and women including european and world champions, this years double trap gold medalist in the olympics (Peter Wilson from Dorset) was only 2 points off a perfect 200, while I do understand the reaction against the idiotic level of untrained, unskilled gun ownership in the US, including assault rifles (and of course in the US most fatal shootings are with a gun that you own), but please don't tar the UK with the same brush as the US.

        7. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: @AC: 11:09 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

          Because the majority of the British public didn't grow up with guns. The thought of everyone here having a shed full of guns is odd to _most_ people.

          It's a cultural thing, even in the late 80's when we had similiar firearms laws to you lot, eg pistols and semi auto rifles were still legal, ownership was very very low.

        8. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: @AC: 11:09 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

          "Why does the British public assume use of guns automagically means "racist"?"

          Well, because for many Americans it does. What gives it away is generally claiming that a 9mm doesn't have enough stopping power.

          "Beneath the debate of outlawing guns lies race. Conservatives want guns to protect themselves against blacks, but can’t say so. Liberals want to eliminate guns so as to disarm blacks, of whom they are afraid but cannot say so. If you think this is not true, tell me who people fear when they buy guns. Are liberals worried about being shot by white, forty-dive-year-old duck hunters? Do conservatives expect to find Jewish violinists crawling through their windows at night? Then whom do they fear? "

          Fred On Everything

          I better post this as AC, now I've broken the rule of silence.

          1. Trokair 1
            FAIL

            Re: @AC: 11:09 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

            @ AC "Well, because for many Americans it does. What gives it away is generally claiming that a 9mm doesn't have enough stopping power."

            Well, no actually. I'm an independent and I own guns because I like going to the shooting range. I also own some as history pieces. I especially enjoy my GI Spec 1911 (The same as was issued to our troops who fought in World War 2). The real reason to own guns however is this:

            “When the resolution of enslaving America was formed in Great Britain, the British Parliament was advised by an artful man, – who was governor of Pennsylvania, to disarm the people; that it was the best and most effectual way to enslave them; but that they should not do it openly, but weaken them, and let them sink gradually, by totally disusing and neglecting the militia.” –George Mason

            Give in to your slavery if you like, I'd rather have the option to resist if necessary.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: @AC: 11:09 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

              @ Trokair1: perhaps you missed these weasel words - "... for many ..." "... generally ..."

              Doesn't apply to you, obviously. Your reason to own guns is to resist the Government. Good man, I salute you. It takes suicidal courage to say that and mean it after what happened at Waco and Ruby Ridge. Though, I wonder how effective your weapons would be if the government sent a SWAT team to your house to collect them. I suppose you could at least guarantee you wouldn't be taken alive.

              Me, I'll keep my short barrel shotgun and completely adequate small caliber handguns for recreational use and, if necessary, defense against less heavily armed assailants.

        9. croc

          Re: @AC: 11:09 (was: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...)

          The problem with tools.... If all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.

    5. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...

      Well, Jake, your wife might not agree but I prefer the 9mm Short as it is a lot less tiring to shoot. The .45 is fun until your wrists start to ache, but then maybe you've built up stronger wrists through a lot of self-abuse? Is Mrs Jake built like the proverbial brick outhouse? I used to shoot such wimpy pistols as .22LR and 9mm Short (and the odd .25 even) all day so maybe I was a bit emasculated before Blair decided I was a Menace To Society.

      Yes, Blair took away our pistols. Well, actually he just took them away from us legal UK shooters, the criminals just laughed and carried on as before, meaning that at one point it was more likely that you would be shot in Nottingham than Afghanistan, let alone any US city. Instead, us competition shooters in the UK had to switch to .22LR rifles, which are actually deadlier at a longer range than the little .22 competition pistols we used to shoot, but Blair knows best! Oh, and I can still go on a rampage with my licenced shotgun, but the chances of me plinking at passersby with the much less deadly .22LR Sako Tri Ace has been removed by Knee-Jerk Blair. I still get to range shoot pistols on trips to the States but I'm sure Blair was right.... wasn't he?

      1. Martin Silver badge
        WTF?

        Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...

        "..meaning that at one point it was more likely that you would be shot in Nottingham than Afghanistan, let alone any US city..."

        Citation please. I find this one hard to believe.

        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
          Boffin

          Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...

          Just go Yahoogle for Shottingham", Nottingham's nickname. The stat was from counting gun-crime incidents per thousand population in inner cities, and the worrying bit was a whole host of Western cities (London, Chicago and Detroit were also on the list) came out as more dangerous than Kabul or Baghdad! Just how much of a failure Tony Blair's knee-jerk banning of all handgun ownership was is a matter of record:

          http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/law-and-order/6438601/Gun-crime-doubles-in-a-decade.html

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lil51T7UIrc

          Taking handguns away from law-abiding owners was simply windrow-dressing to garner votes and make it look like New Labour was "tough on gun-crime", when the reality was hitting out at the small number of legal gun-owners cost little to do (most of us voted Tory) but had zero impact on actual gun-crime. Legally-owned and licensed handguns were used in a tiny percentage of crimes prior to the ban, and their banning was never going to make a difference to the massive number of illegal weapons wielded by people that had no intention of following laws.

          An exact analogy would be if I told you that you couldn't have a car anymore, that I was banning all privately-owned cars, simply because some criminal had brought one over from France and run someone over. Oh, but that ban would affect the majority of voters.....

          1. Martin Silver badge
            FAIL

            @Matt Bryant and Nottingham

            An unconvincing article you posted there.

            Headline - Gun Crime doubles in a decade.

            Actual value - 89% from 1998/99 to 2007/08 , and "provisional figures for 2008/09 suggest overall firearm offences may be down on the previous year".

            Third paragraph - "The number of people injured or killed by a gun has also doubled under Labour." Bias or what? This is meant to be a news article, and your evidence for the failure of Blair's policies.

            Finally, a quote from the bottom of the article...

            <blockquote>

            A Home Office spokeswoman said: "It is misleading to compare figures for 2007 / 08 with those from 2002 and before, due to changes in recording practices.

            "There has been an 11 per cent fall in gun crime since 2005 and provisional figures for firearm offences recorded by the police show they account for 0.2 per cent of all recorded crime.

            </blockquote>

            So, in other words, the whole article is based on misleading statistics.

            I'm actually not arguing that taking handguns away from licensed (though not always law-abiding) owners did very little, and was window-dressing. But you're going to have to come up with better arguments than that Torygraph article - and I have still seen no evidence that Nottingham has ever been more dangerous than Kabul or Baghdad.

            1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
              Pirate

              Re: @Matt Bryant and Nottingham

              "....Actual value - 89% from 1998/99 to 2007/08...." Well, not quite doubled, but the supergoshwonderful Labour gun laws were supposed to eradicate gun crime, instead it massively increased.

              ".....So, in other words, the whole article is based on misleading statistics....." Please do try and deny that guncrime went up massively AFTER Labour's stupid ban, if only for the comedy value. The only thing the ban eradicated were a lot of UK businesses that legally served the UK market, including companies like John Slough of London (http://www.johnsloughoflondon.co.uk/Antique-Arms/pages/about). Mr Slough actually had a pistol being trialed with the British Army when Blair's idiotic ban came in. Not only did the British forces have to pick a foreign weapon (the P226), sending more British taxpayers' money abroad, the taxpayers had to pay Slough compensation to put his pistol factory out of business and his employees out of work!

              "....and I have still seen no evidence that Nottingham has ever been more dangerous than Kabul or Baghdad....." OK, since I can't find the original report, let's do a little comparison of our own. Here's the link to the international homicides table, please note that Afghansitan as a whole has a murder rate of 2.4 per 100,000 population, even though it has areas which are in effect in civil war.

              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_intentional_homicide_rate

              Now, open the following link to the Reform report that got everone calling Nottingham the most dangerous city in the UK back in 2008. Click through to page 22 and check the murder rate per 100,000 population - it's 3.27, higher than Afghanistan:

              http://www.reform.co.uk/client_files/www.reform.co.uk/files/urban_crime_rankings.pdf

              Please note that Nottingham also had the highest rate of crime for seven of the offences in the report. Lovely place!

    6. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      1. Don Jefe
        Meh

        Re: I really feel sorry for you Yanks @Irongut

        I feel sorry for you cause you don't have enough balls to own a gun or two, much less use one.

    7. NogginTheNog
      Mushroom

      Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...

      Mr. Jake. Your country (I'm assuming you're American since you use the term 'Brits'?) was founded upon the gun. It's law is enforced through the gun. It's foreign policy is to a large extent shaped by the gun. It's people also seem to rate themselves free by their ownership of lots of guns.

      I'm happy to take your pity if that's what you feel makes your country a better place.

    8. Rusty 1
      Coat

      Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...

      My ex's weapon of choice was her gob. I don't know what calibre it was, but I'm damn sure there wasn't a silencer for it.

      1. perlcat
        Pint

        Re: The wife's primary pistol of choice ...

        So was mine. It went off in the morning, and went on all day long, until I sank into the blessed relief of male-pattern deafness.

  12. Graham Marsden

    "the small and rather underpowered PPK"

    "really would have been an unlikely choice for an undercover service to be issuing to its assassins"

    Really?

    An assassin doesn't want to have a face to face shoot-out with his target, he doesn't want to talk to him or make a witty comment, he wants to get the job done as quickly and safely as possible.

    The .25 Beretta would be fine for this: Walk up behind the target, a single swift shot into the back of the head which probably won't even penetrate out the front of the skull, and while anyone nearby is wondering what that "crack" sound was and why some bloke has fallen down, the assassin is walking away, job done.

    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: "the small and rather underpowered PPK"

      "....Walk up behind the target, a single swift shot into the back of the head which probably won't even penetrate out the front of the skull, and while anyone nearby is wondering what that "crack" sound was and why some bloke has fallen down, the assassin is walking away, job done." The standard CIA assassin's pistol during the Vietnam era was the .22 used in exactly the way described.

      An American friend assures me that the various US police forces say more people are killed by .25ACP in cheap pistols like the Raven than any other calibre. Given a few decades, the cheap and light Ket-Tec .380s may catch up, but the .25 has been killing drunks in bars since 1905.

    2. jake Silver badge

      @Graham Marsden (was: Re: "the small and rather underpowered PPK")

      Really.

      In your scenario, a dagger or stiletto would make more sense, and cause less commotion. More accurate then the toy "Bond guns", too.

    3. fajensen Silver badge
      Terminator

      Re: "the small and rather underpowered PPK"

      Back when I did pistol- and rifle -shooting, it was all with deceptively small and wimpy-looking .22 rounds - however the bullets would go right through about an inch of oak planks intended to protect the fluorescent lights illuminating the targets - which one discovers because "everyone" gets bored shooting at the target and need to test if the sand will spray like it does in the westerns (It does, except much higher)!!

      These little rounds would certainly kill at close quarters and one would not really need a silencer, the sound is a very undramatic little "bang", with hardly any recoil so the assassin could even get several shots in before anyone noticed.

  13. This post has been deleted by its author

  14. Matt Bryant Silver badge
    Holmes

    Bond's options were limited.

    The New Service Model (more commonly known as the M1917) was a popular Lend-Lease weapon with British troops as it fired the same ammo as that other Lend-Lease favourite, the M1928 Tommy gun. In particular, the famous Paddy Mayne carried one, which explains why Flemming probably chose it as the "power" option. It was also more accessible than the rarer Colt M1911 automatic which was another favourite with the British. Unfortunately, the M1911 and M1917 are big service pistols and the idea of trying to conceal one under a dinner jacket is a bit laughable.

    As regards the PPK, again Flemming's options were limited by the British Army's preference for revolvers over automatics. The only comparable British weapon was the Webley & Scott automatics, such as the old Metropolitan Police model. Interestingly, the Webley & Scott came about for the same reasons the PPK did - plainclothes coppers needing a small pistol that could be easily concealed. The old Met Police model was also popular with the SAS and other clandestine groups in the Mid East in WW2 as it was small, reliable (more so than the PPK, even), and accurate over short ranges. Unfortunately, it wasn't "new" and didn't have the PPK's "sexy" curves.

    Just after the War there was a lot of fuss, especially from the Americans, treating German weapon designs as though they were all amazing. Some of this came from trying to explain away such events as the 1944 Ardennes Offensive when the Americans got their butts handed to them on a plate. The PPK was a good design, not brilliant, and actually less popular with British officers than captured Beretta Modello 1934 automatics, but Flemming probably also had one eye on the American market and realised the PPK sat well with the American perception of German weapons. As far as the Americans were concerned, the Italians had been a walkover, so who would want an Italian weapon like the Beretta?

    As a concealed weapon the PPK is a good choice as it is very small, thinner than the snub-nose revolvers popular in the States, and therefore much easier to hide on the person without unsightly bulges. As to the 9mm Short ammo being underpowered, this is a myth. At the ranges most pistol fights happen at, usually counted in feet, the 9mm Short is just as likely to kill an unarmoured opponent as the bigger 9mmP, and making a concealable 9mmP gun that is actually nice to shoot really is a challenge. And let's not even talk about the noise level - a .25ACP isn't exactly loud even unsilenced, but a 9mmP will get the local copper's attention.

    Indeed, even the little .25ACP round will happily punch through a car door or one inch of pine at short ranges. And that's the standard FMJ loading - specialist rounds like the Hirtenberger loading have been videoed going right through a 2x4 plank. At the same time, the little .25ACP is very easy to shoot as the recoil is very low, which means in the typical short-range engagement, a skilled shooter can quickly put four or five rounds in a target's chest with ease. One of the best ways to win an argument with those that insist the .25ACP is useless is to ask them if they want to prove it by taking one in the chest - none of the macho .45 carriers I've ever met has volunteered.

    Personally, I would have given the original Bond the Webley & Scott Met model as the concealed carry weapon, the .25ACP Beretta as an ankle gun, and then probably a .357 Magnum in the car for "distance work" (LKF - the .357 Magnum actually debuted before WW2). But, seeing as they are employing people like Jamie Wilkinson, I expect Bond's next outing will see him carrying the Desert Eagle .50......

    1. Tim Jenkins

      Re: Bond's options were limited.

      As a further reminder of just how long ago we first met him, Bond recalls being present at both the Ardennes in 1944 (while under machine-gun fire in Dr No) and Berlin in 1945 (in The Man with the Golden Gun, out-machoing Scaramanga). We also know he earned his '00' prefix (which signifies an agent who has killed in cold blood, not the 'licence to kill' invented for a film title) during the war by assassinating a German cypher expert in New York (presumably prior to Pearl Harbor) and a Norwegian double-agent. Sadly, Fleming never expanded on these incidents, which would make Bond, assuming a birth date in the early 1920s, now 90+, and one of the dwindling number of veterans of WWII (though, confusingly, of American and Russian military campaigns).

      1. Brangdon

        Re: Bond's options were limited.

        That the 00 prefix represented a licence to kill, is mentioned in the book Goldfinger, in 1956.

  15. TeeCee Gold badge
    WTF?

    Long barrelled revolver.

    Er, last time I looked, .45 ACP was an automatic round (Automatic Colt Pistol).

    A long barrelled revolver would more likely be .45 magnum, .357 magnum or .38 special[1]. The major advantage of a revolver[2] is that, having the round in the revolving magazine rather than in the grip, the length of the round is not limited by the size of the grip. Thus a longer casing for more powder and more power is possible without making the thing impossible to hold[3]. The greater effective ranges possible with the larger rounds are aided in accuracy by lengthening the barrel. There would be little reason in having a long-barreled weapon with a short load cartridge.

    [1] Of the latter two, in a long-barrelled weapon where size is not a factor, almost invariably the former. The latter round may be freely used as a substitute, as the two are identical in all but the length.

    [2] The disadvantage being that, outside of the movies, you have to reload more frequently and reloading takes longer.

    [3] .45 ACP is pretty much the limit and those with smaller hands often have a problem with such. Glock produced the .45 GAP round, which is shorter and uses "hotter" powder to compensate, for this very reason.

    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: Long barrelled revolver.

      "..... last time I looked, .45 ACP was an automatic round...." Look again, like here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M1917_revolver). The US couldn't make enough Colt .45 autos so asked the revolver manufacturers to chamber their products ofr .45ACP.

      1. TeeCee Gold badge
        Happy

        Re: Long barrelled revolver.

        Thank you. I suppose it had to have been done. I still reckon that if Bond were using a long-barrelled revolver it would be a long round one though and probably .357 magnum. .45 magnums are a shade too unwieldy.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Long barrelled revolver.

      Is reloading a revolver that much slower? It appears that nowadays a full load is on a "carrier" that loads all chambers simultaneously. So - open - tilt empty - load - close. An automatic is presumably unload - stash empty magazine - load - prime first round.

      Found it interesting to see that war zone automatic rifles often have two magazines held together with duct tape for a faster exchange.

      As a 1950s UK kid - our toy guns fired 100 caps in sequence. There were very expensive ones with a cap loaded in each individual bullet - nice looking but guaranteed to get you declared "dead" very quickly. Snub nosed automatics and Lugers were considered a cut above revolvers. A toy Sten gun had a mechanism as cunning as the original. The long stick "magazine" was pushed through the stock to wind up a spring - which then provided the rapid fire sound effect as it was released in bursts by the trigger.

      1. Brian Morrison
        Thumb Down

        Re: Long barrelled revolver.

        Back to back taped magazines might work for something like the AK-47 which is unconcerned with grit in the workings, but many weapons (SA-80 before it was "improved") would jam on tiny bits of crud getting into the breech/magazine.

        One of the biggest problems with this sort of carriage is that it is also possible to bend the insertion end of the magazine so that it won't latch into the gun body, it might also unbalance the weapon somewhat.

      2. TeeCee Gold badge
        Happy

        Re: Long barrelled revolver.

        Yes it is. Getting the rounds in on an speedloader improves matters, but the automatic has a huge advantage. When empty, the slide and hammer stay back. Flick catch and mag drops out, bang in new mag and you are good to go. You don't need to fully prime the first round after reloading on an auto, just thumbing the slide release chambers the next round. In a firefight (i.e. the only time this really matters), you wouldn't bother stashing the empty mag. If you win, you get to pick it up later.

        Another consideration is that automatics recock after each round is fired. Revolvers have to be manually cocked or you suffer the inaccuracy caused by the long trigger pull against the cocking mechanism.

        Somebody who has practised a lot may well get up to auto speeds reloading a revolver using speedloads, but any idiot can reload an auto very rapidly after a mere few moments of practice. Also you still have to factor in having to reload after every six (or so) shots rather than every 10, 15 or whatever.

  16. Shakje

    But I thought everyone knew

    the P228 was a pea shooter?

  17. P Saunders

    I thought he used a .38 spl in Dr No

    I could be wrong. I am getting old and its been decades since I read the book (or saw the movie for that matter)....

  18. jason 7
    Happy

    I love the iconic pic of Connery......

    ....holding a long barrelled gun.

    Nice to know its a iirc a Ruger .22 target pistol, as that's all they could get their hands on during the photo session.

    Even less super spy as firearms go. Still in the right hands......

    Lucky it wasn't a Gat airpistol.

    1. Ron Christian

      Re: I love the iconic pic of Connery......

      Colt Woodsman, I do believe.

      1. jason 7

        Re: I love the iconic pic of Connery......

        Nope not a woodsman, if you compare. Very close though.

        http://media.theiapolis.com/d8-i28-k9-l1Z/sean-connery-james-bond.html

        http://www.coltautos.com/woodsmans/Woodsmanci.htm

  19. Not_The_Droids
    Black Helicopters

    How times change

    Seeing all this US vs UK gun argument...

    I'm currently reading Churchill's book series on WWII (fascinating read, I'm on book 4 of 6). Seems that in the late 1930s / early 1940s, GB was begging for every firearm they could get their hands on, because of the seemingly imminent German invasion (which, fortunately, never happened, because of the Air Force superiority). Part of me wonders - what happened to those millions of firearms that were shipped to GB in the 1940s and distributed to protect against invasion? Were they collected up? (I somehow doubt the answer is in book 6.)

    Black helicopters, because we have plenty of those around here too...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: How times change

      I don't have a source, but I don't beleive many of them we actually distrubuted. Apparently providing about 30 different calibres to random locations around the country was a bit much for the ministry of supply.

      Presumably however, the weapons would only have been issued to the home guard, so collecting them again would be simplicity itself. Just issue the unit with new enfields and collect the old rifles from the armoury. As for what happened to those enfields however, quite a lot are still in place in the armouries of the old home guard drill halls in the L59 varient for use by the Air/Army Cadet forces.

  20. No, I will not fix your computer

    The gun is irrelevant

    While it may be iconic, the point is that Bond is Bond, Bond is not the gun or the gadget, he is skillful, resilient, dedicated, unfearing, unyealding (chairs with the seat cut out come to mind), he'll kill with a uranium rod, a bathroom sink or a missile, to kill someone with a "practical" weapon is somehow a bit rude, very unbritish, the PPK is just one of the slightly impractical weapons, giving the bad guys a chance, his distain for gadgets is exactly the same, only used when absolutely required, literally life or death (or undoing ladies clothing), "he" wants to beat the bad guys, he doesn't want the tech to.

  21. Jay Holmes

    I would argue that pistols are not long range weapons so are in fact pointless for anything further than 50 metres (and this is classed as long range!)

    Therefore the PPK is perfect for what Bond and indeed a lot of undercover operatives need. It is easily concealed and due to its size easily stabilised for firing giving you more accuracy.

    Lets face it a 9mm to the heart will kill someone just as easily as a .45 or .50

    Having fired several pistols including Desert Eagles, Berettas, Brownings and various revolvers I must admit I do like the PPK it is compact and accurate and after a day on the range you can walk away and still pick up a pint quite happily.

  22. Dropper

    Nothing wrong but..

    I don't really care what pistol James Bond uses.. as someone mentioned it only runs out of ammo when running out of ammo adds drama to a scene.. but didn't it get upgraded to the more modern and several times more powerful Walther P-90 sometime during the Brosnan era?

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Meanwhile back in the real world

    Here's a personal experience which may shed some light on the case for private firearms ownership. I used to own some rental properties in a dodgy part of town, and I had to collect the rents myself. The rents were paid in cash because most of my tenants didn't have checking accounts.

    I have a legal concealed weapons carry permit, and carried a .32 cal PPKS. In nickel. Pretty little thing, nicely made, fits my hand well.

    The comments about it being underpowered and prone to jamming are absolutely true. It is very finicky about the flavor of ammunition it is fed, and while it makes a ferocious noise when fired, the rounds often do not penetrate through an empty cardboard oil can. It is really the wrong gun to be considered a defensive firearm, but it is what I had at the time.

    Anyway, some random dirtbag decided he needed my rent receipts more than I did, and advanced on me with a short length of pipe. I pulled the Walther and aimed it at him, holding it in the best two-handed "I mean business" style.

    He did not stop to reflect that the PPKS was a "lady's gun".

    He did not stop to reflect that the PPKS is seriously underpowered as a combat weapon.

    He did not stop to reflect that the PPKS is prone to jamming.

    He did not stop to reflect that I didn't have the safety off! (And I didn't even realize it!)

    All he knew was this mofo'er had a GUN pointed directly at HIM and was going to shoot him RIGHT NOW.

    Fortunately, he quickly decided to find someone else to rob, preferably someone without a firearm, and decamped forthwith. Very forthwith.

    I don't know who was more scared, him or me, but afterward, I still had the rent money. So here's a case where availability of a firearm prevented a crime.

    I now carry a larger caliber revolver which doesn't have a safety, and will fire with a trigger pull. I've also sharpened up my technique and keep in practice because there are no guarantees the next guy will be smart enough to cut and run like the first (and so far only) guy.

    Pistol fights happen with very little advance warning (the assailants rely on surprise) and at close ranges. There isn't time to call the police, nor could they possibly arrive on time even if you were able to call them. If you have to arm yourself, carry the largest caliber weapon you can comfortably conceal and control, and keep it simple because if you have to use it, you need it NOW, not after 15 minutes of fiddling with it to get it to "armed" status. The best defense is to simply avoid situations where you might conceivably need a firearm in the first place, but sometimes you might not have that option.

    1. Danny 14 Silver badge

      Re: Meanwhile back in the real world

      I use a different technique, its called insurance. If I get mugged with the "works" money then it gets replaced. That way I dont need a gun, I just hand over the money and file a police report.

      The next guy you get jumped by might also have a gun. If I get jumped by someone im probably more likely to live by just handing over the money.

    2. Sir Runcible Spoon

      Re: Meanwhile back in the real world

      " I didn't have the safety off! (And I didn't even realize it!)"

      "I now carry a larger caliber revolver which doesn't have a safety, and will fire with a trigger pull."

      Well done for having the nuts to pull your gun, but the can you understand why the two above statements taken from your post is quite worrying?

      I love to shoot guns, but I'm glad I live in a society where it isn't the norm.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Meanwhile back in the real world

        Yes, after I calmed down and thought about the encounter, I realized the several things I had done wrong (including getting into that situation in the first place) and my lack of skill and practice in gun handling. Fortunately for me, just showing the weapon and appearing to be willing to use it was sufficient, but I realized then and realize now that luck is not a reliable strategy. I was in the wrong place at the wrong time, with the wrong weapon, and with inadequate preparation and training. The other guy was even worse off since he simply decided to take a chance that his random would-be victim wouldn't be prepared at all, and that chance didn't pan out for him. Consequently, I "won".

        Being somewhat older (and hopefully a little wiser) now, I consciously try to not place myself in situations where weapons might be required in the first place - don't carry a lot of cash, don't wear flash and bling, don't traverse bad neighborhoods at night, all the usual precautions. However, I have also changed my weapon for something that is more likely to be useful and effective if the poop does hit the fan anyway, and I have trained and practiced with it so that I have a better idea of what I'm doing (and including the responsibilities and consequences of firing a lethal weapon at a human being).

    3. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge
      Stop

      Re: Meanwhile back in the real world

      I think your post actually highlights very well why carrying a gun is a very bad idea for an average person, especially where you say "I don't know who was more scared, him or me".

      I would think that shooting at another human being, even some lowlife mugger, must be a life-changing experience for any decent, non-psychopathic, person. You'll be frightened, nervous, and you'll almost certainly hesitate. If the lowlife facing you also has a gun, and knows that he's already in deep shit, it's very likely that he'll recover (or panic) first. You're dead.

      There's a reason why they train soldiers to aim for "the target", to "take out" "the enemy", it's to stop them thinking of their assailant as a living person, just react and shoot. They can throw up all they like afterwards. I doubt if an average person would want to be trained to that mechanical a level, I certainly wouldn't. If my family were threatened I like to think I'd react well, even bare-handed, but faced with an armed mugger who just wanted my money I seriously doubt if I would be able to take the conscious decision to kill him before he shot me, and I think I'm a better person for that. YMMV.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Meanwhile back in the real world

        I agree completely - it WAS a life-changing experience for me, and I didn't even shoot him! Unfortunately, I suspect that it was not a life-changing situation for him, it was more like simply an occupational hazard of being a mugger. The entire situation puts responsible, civil people at a disadvantage - we do NOT desire to harm anyone, but the mugger is quite willing to, and is prepared to do this in order to achieve his goal. He couldn't care less about us, he wants his daily fix (or whatever) and anyone who stands between him and his goal stands a good chance of getting hurt or even killed whether they resist or not. Lack of resistance is NOT a guarantee that you won't be harmed. Remember, you may not be dealing with a rational person.

        Even a non-rational person will pause if there is a gun stuck in their face. That's what I want - I want him to go away, quickly, and be done with him. I have no desire to shoot him, I am not Dirty Harry or Rambo, and I firmly believe the best weapon is one you never need to use. I want to be able to project a credible threat, and I hope that ends the confrontation right there - but if it does not, I want to be able to follow through with it - I don't know if I can, and I really, really hope I never find out, but I'd rather be prepared just in case.

    4. JDX Gold badge

      Re: Meanwhile back in the real world

      Or you could have used a replica.

      The problem with pointing a gun at someone is you have to be prepared to use it.

      1. Sir Runcible Spoon

        Re: Meanwhile back in the real world

        "Or you could have used a replica."

        To be honest if I was in a position where I felt I needed to produce a gun to get me out of it, I surely would want the fucking thing to work, otherwise you'd be just as well off getting your willy out and waving it in their face.

        To the OP: Glad you recognised your lack of experience with the weapon and sought training, but I don't think it's mandatory to have a psych test or even be competent to use a firearm to own one in the US. So whilst you may now have more skills and confidence (and thus are probably less likely to need to fire it in anger) there are going to be a million more tits out there without a clue packing a gun.

        I have no problem with responsible people owning weapons. I don't even like my wife using my BSA Scorpio T-10 (.177 airgun for reference) ffs because she doesn't observe proper gun sense. She can't see why I go nuts when she starts pointing it at things (me, the dog) etc. even when I *know* it isn't loaded or charged etc.

  24. Ken 2

    .45 ACP lacks sufficient penetrating power?

    Your comment that .45 ACP does not penetrate well is curious. The .45 ACP in +P chambering is more than sufficient to penetrate standard outer-wear and human bodies, though it is not as powerful as .357 magnum or .38 Super. It is not good at penetrating hard cover such as vehicle bodies or walls though, nor against body armor. However, 9 mm is also not very good at penetrating modern body armor, though it is much better than .45 ACP at penetrating hard cover. Against soft targets (i.e. a human body) the edge is to .45 ACP in terms of tissue damage. The question, when shooting people, is not so much penetration as it is stopping power. Since both cartridges propel the bullet sufficiently well into soft tissue, the greater sectional density of the .45 cal bullet gives it a bit of an edge over a 9 mm bullet.

    This ballistics chart may be useful for you: http://www.ballistics101.com/45_acp.php

    The main reason that .45 ACP handguns are not common issue weapons is that they are typically bulkier than pistols chambering the 9 mm and the recoil from a .45 is such that smaller people have difficulty shooting them accurately, particularly for follow-up shots.

    Otherwise an informative and good read about Bond's movie weapons.

    1. Dana W

      Re: .45 ACP lacks sufficient penetrating power?

      I carry mine with +p ammo hollow points, The Glock 36 shows a .45 can conceal well, but I admit the small grip makes control something you have to learn. And its an odd duck, even the holster is special order.

  25. Dana W

    Choices.

    I carried a stainless PPK for ages. I liked it, but I had a hard time finding a rig that concealed it well.

    I traded it black in for a Glock 36, much easier to conceal and I prefer the .45 round to the relatively small .380 for stopping power.

    It is my sincere hope to never shoot anyone, but as they teach you in class, if you have to drop an assailant you want to drop them first hit.

    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Happy

      Re: Choices.

      "I carried a stainless PPK for ages....." Poser! :P "..... a Glock 36..." Oooh, a poser with money! But only six rounds in the 36? And a Glock.... well, it always felt a bit unsavoury, like I was shooting the equivalent of a BMW 3-series saloon. And Bond should drive an Aston Martin, not a BMW (we'll try and forget the BMW sponsored cars in the Brosnan movies). The problem with more modern guns is they all look rather ugly compared to the sleek little PPK. I suppose a purpose-designed close-quarters pistol like the Rohrbaugh R9S might do, with a grip extension like the old Walther PP's, if I can only work out how to pronounce it!

      1. Not_The_Droids
        Coat

        Re: Choices.

        I agree, Glocks are ugly guns, but my 27 is about the biggest gun my smallish frame can conceal. I lust after an elegantly machined full sized 1911 in .45 cal, but think "what practicality is it? I can't carry that monster.". My G27 isn't anything I want to show off (like said 1911 would be)... but for cost, reliability, simplicity, weight, and available aftermarket accessories... it's hard to beat an ugly Glock.

        I had a PPK at one time (traded it away)... it tended to jam a lot, but that may have been the ammo I was feeding it.

        1. Local G
          WTF?

          Re: Choices.

          "but that may have been the ammo I was feeding it"

          When I bought my PPK, I also bought 90 grain slugs. After some target practice I got a rush of testosterone, so I bought 92 grain ammo. The PPK jammed on the first shot so I went back to 88 grain just to be on the safe side.

          After all, you don't need a powerful bullet when you're standing over your wife's lover in bed with your wife.

  26. unwarranted triumphalism
    FAIL

    Look everyone

    The gun nuts have come out to play.

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Re: Look everyone

      Makes a nice change from banging on about phones.

      1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
        Facepalm

        Re: Re: Look everyone

        And it's a Lewis article that doesn't mention Apocalyptic Global Warming! Oh crud, that will set the Greenpeckers off.

    2. Sir Runcible Spoon
      Mushroom

      Re: Look everyone

      "The gun nuts have come out to play."

      It's an article about guns. What exactly were you expecting Mr Unwarranted, sausages?

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

  27. Local G
    Facepalm

    "The Walther Polizei Pistole Kriminal (PPK)"

    Really?

    All these years I thought I had a Walther Polizeipistole Kurz. (PPK). You learn something every day here at el reg. Kurz means short in German. As in " die kunst ist lang und kurz unser leben." (Goethe).

    I've have had mine for 40 years and haven't had to use it once.

    Although once there was a huge street party in the Southern California town I lived in and, minding my own business, I was menaced by a out-of-town gang. I went home, strapped my shoulder holster under my arm pit, put on a jacket and went back. The gang saw the bulge in the back of my jacket and was gone in less than 10 minutes. I had no idea the ppk was sticking out and could could have arrested for carrying a loaded gun.

    Phew.

    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Happy

      Re: "The Walther Polizei Pistole Kriminal (PPK)"

      ".....I've have had mine for 40 years......" And I so had you down as a Makarov-lugger, comrade.

      1. Local G
        Unhappy

        Re: Mararov-Luger

        Nyet, Tovarishch.

        I was beset with both principles and style.

        You are very lucky to have neither.

        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
          Happy

          Re: Re: Mararov-Luger

          "......I was beset with both principles and style....." Well, both are merely POVs and not actual tangibles.

          ".....You are very lucky to have neither." True, I do value functionality over the lack of substance usually dressed up as "style". Anyway, what are you doing carrying? Surely you view all firearms as just decadent imperialist machinery, etc, blah-blah-blah? And a pistol so associated with a fine hero of the imperialists as James Bond!?! They'll cancel your subscription to "How to Think the Berkeley Way" if you carry that on!

          1. Local G
            Happy

            I hate arguing with you...

            but cyberspace is putting a lot of bread on a lot of peoples' tables. And that isn't tangible

            Tangible is like matter; intangible like anti-matter. As the song goes "You can't have one without the other."

            It was around 1980 and I only carried it once. I had been verbally intimidated by a half dozen punks. I had no intention of being threatened in my own city near my own home so I went home and put on a shoulder holster and PPK under a jacket -- for the first time. I went back to the same spot (a large planter on State St). I climbed up on it and leaned forward, elbows on knees. That tightened the jacket on my back and pushed the lump of holster out into view. I had no idea that was happening. The gang saw it and were soon gone. It's as simple as that. I haven't worn it since.

            I think it was an intangible voice in my head that told me to do it.

            I bought the Walther because I saw it in a Bond movie in the early 70's. When I go for target practice now, I get a lot of oohs and ahs and 'can I hold it?'

            How ever did PPKs become a topic here?

  28. JDX Gold badge

    "at least we have a grasp of the reality of the real world"

    Wonderful. You think America is "the real world".

    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: "at least we have a grasp of the reality of the real world"

      ".....You think America is "the real world"." Your view as to what constitutes the real World is likely to be highly dependent on your geographical location and economic means. Your political viewpoint is likely to be influenced by those factors and hence your "real World" POV.

  29. Ron Christian

    the gun you have on you

    There's a saying that the best gun is the one you have on you. A police officer who is carrying openly can afford to carry a full size high capacity firearm and enough ammo to carry him thorough a firefight.

    A spy almost by definition is operating in deep cover and needs to plan his or her equipment accordingly. The PPK doesn't hold many rounds and the 9mm kurz (or .380) has inferior ballistics to the full size 9X19, but carrying a big heavy gun is counterproductive if it "prints" through your jacket or otherwise gives away the fact that you are armed, when the whole point of your presence is to be unobtrusive.

    Speaking as someone who has carried concealed in the past, and could legally now if I felt the need, I can say from personal experience that carrying a full size double stack firearm plus extra magazines "Die Hard" style gets really old after awhile. And is nearly impossible when wearing a tuxedo. (Seriously.) After awhile you really appreciate the thinness and lightness of a compact, single stack pistol, especially in situations where it's important for bystanders not to know you're armed. (The "concealed" in "concealed carry".)

    In the stories, Bond was a master marksman, and someone with skill can make up somewhat for a firearm's reduced capacity. Although I haven't seen the movie yet, I suspect his PPK was loaded with +P (over pressure) rounds, which helps make up for the .380's somewhat anemic ballistics. (At the cost of accelerated wear on the gun.)

    As to the PPKs reliability, I imagine the gunsmiths at the hypothetical MI6 are knowledgeable enough to ensure that Bond's weapon is free of defects and feeds reliably. Although I don't own one, (I tend towards Beretta) an associate carries one, we practice together, and his has never jammed in years of use.

    So yeah, it's a nice call-back to what Bond carried in the books, but it's not as impractical as it sounds, given the role of a spy.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: the gun you have on you

      You sound like you know a bit about guns, so can you tell me why guns jam? Is it as simple as oversize ammunition (including heat expansion when fired etc.)? If so, can a barrel be re-bored and rifled once made to make sure it doesn't jam?

      Apologies if it's a nonsense question.

      1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
        Boffin

        Re: Re: the gun you have on you

        "..... can you tell me why guns jam?...." Usually dirt in the mechanism, such as dust (mixed with gun oil), grit or mud, or even just pocket lint. Some weapons like the AK47 have parts that fit together quite loosely, so they can tolerate more dirt. Quality pocket pistols usually have quite close tolerances, which means the gaps are very small and the bits fit together tightly, meaning only a little dirt or lint is needed to jam it up. When the round at the top of the mag is pushed forward it sometimes doesn't get cleanly pushed into the chamber, getting lodged halfway. Or it may fire but then the case does not eject cleanly, getting stuck halfway out. If you load the wrong ammunition for the weapon - not necessarily the wrong shape but the wrong gunpowder loading - it may be too weak to compress the recoil spring and complete the loading cycle. With double-action revolvers, you can simply work the trigger to rotate the cylinder to the next round, which is why they are considered more reliable. Rarely, a component in the mechanism itself fails.

        In the PPK's case it is usually soft-nosed ammunition, such as service-issue FMJ, being the problem. In order to get the shape of the handle the magazine is sloped. Rounds often got misshapen when being loaded into the mag or when feeding up the mag. Sometimes, as was common with the old Luger and its very sloped mag, rounds jam up in the magazine itself. With older mags the spring can weaken, leading to a greater chance of a loading jam. Using hard-nosed rounds helps with guns like the PPK where the mag is raked but will increase wear on the barrel.

        One of my relatives was a Desert Rat and after the War he may have (allegedly, etc) brought back (illegally) a nice collection of Italian and German automatics. Years later when I asked him which was his favourite he just laughed and said none. He always carried a Webley Mk IV .38 revolver because it always fired when he needed it to!

        1. Local G
          Facepalm

          Re: the gun you have on you

          And which of your myriad examples have you personally experienced? All of them? Probably the one where the explosive was "too weak to compress the recoil spring and complete the loading cycle"

          That must have been the time when that very hot slug plopped out of the barrel of your beretta, burned a hole in your Nike Trainer, and singed the Hobbit hair on your big toe.

          I think guns jam because gun owners are less than stupid.

          How can anyone load a magazine and bend the rim of a cartridge so that it can not move freely up the magazine and into the chamber and then put other shells in after that?

          Or how can anyone clean a gun so poorly that grit, mud and pocket lint stick around the few moving parts in an handgun like the conspiring grime in an animated toilet cleaner commercial?

          Perhaps you noticed my eye witness account of ammo that was too strong for the weapon causing it to jam. I have trouble believing that ammo too weak is a greater cause of jamming. I'm sure you will direct my attention to the chapter and verse which proves your point.

          1. Ken 2

            Re: the gun you have on you

            Certainly I can think of times when the charge in the cartridge is too weak. This most often happens with handloaded ammo for target shooting. It's why, for instance, one might put weaker target springs into their 1911 if its used primarily for match purposes. I've had this happen several times when I've used match ammo that I've handloaded in my carry 1911.

            Incidentally, another point of failure is when the rim of the cartridge case separates upon extraction, leaving most of the case in the chamber. The next round can't be chambered. This often happens with reloaded ammunition where the case has been weakened from excessive cycles of being fired and reloaded; I've had this happen a couple of times with my 1911. It also happens with a number of semi-auto or auto rifles where the factory round is too "hot" and the action cycles before the case has fully contracted after firing. The cartridge case head is ripped off, rendering the weapon useless until the rest of the case is removed. Some older post-WWII rifles came with case extractor tools for just this issue, though I don't think it's much of a problem with modern battle rifles and modern factory ammunition.

          2. Matt Bryant Silver badge
            Boffin

            Re: Re: the gun you have on you

            "And which of your myriad examples have you personally experienced?....." Personally, not all of them.

            ".....That must have been the time when that very hot slug plopped out of the barrel..." Nope, the bullet went zipping off just fine, even roughly where I wanted it to go, but there was a manufacturing problem with the loading in the cartridge which meant that only half the powder actually burned. The resulting recoil was not strong enough to push the slide all the way back to extract the round and chamber a new one. At the time it was a bit confusing - there's an extra hole in the target, I'm sure the slide cycled (it had actually gone back about two-thirds of normal travel), but that one didn't feel that pokey and why didn't I see a case get extracted? It was only an ickle .22 so not much recoil in the first place. The faulty case was still in the chamber and so I had to manually work the mechanism to chamber the next round. That box of ammo went straight back to the manufacturer. Some people wouldn't class that as a "jam", they might call it a "failure to operate" or "feed failure". Personally, if it doesn't fire when I want it to, it's a jam.

            ".....I think guns jam because gun owners are less than stupid...." Well, I did try and use my ESP to scan through the brass walls of every cartridge to mentally check that the chemical composition of every cartrdige was identical before I loaded them, but I just guess my ESP was off that day. The problem was inside the sealed cartridge, even Einstein wouldn't have been able to spot it without loading and firing it.

            "....How can anyone load a magazine and bend the rim of a cartridge...." You'd be surprised, I've even watched someone load a whole clip backwards because they were distracted! It's also not usually the rim but the nose that gets slightly bent. With steeply-angled mags you can also get tipping where the following round pushes the preceding round up at an angle. If you look at the old Sten gun it had a straight, single column mag as it fired the 9mmP ammo, which had parallel walls and a rebated rim. You'd think that would feed fine. But the next generation of SMG, the Sterling, firing the same 9mmP, had a curved and staggered column mag becasue feed problems were a big issue on the Sten. The forward-curved magazine was found to be the best shape for reducing feeding issues with 9mmP. Now, think - how many 9mmP pistols have a magazine that curves forward inside the pistolgrip? None. They usually are raked backwards, meaning the rebated rims overlap, the catridges overlap, and feed problems are definately a possiblity. As regards the PPK, Princess Anne's bodyguard, Beaton, got off one shot with his PPK and then it jammed - with a failure to feed.

            ".....Or how can anyone clean a gun so poorly that grit, mud and pocket lint stick around the few moving parts in an handgun like the conspiring grime in an animated toilet cleaner commercial?...." OK, in the event you mentioned, where was your pistol before you took it out? Was it in a sealed case? Probably not. Many people used to (and still do in some parts of the World) keep their unholstered gun in the nightstand. You say you wore a jacket over the top, had the jacket been cleaned recently or was it full of lint and dust? Did you clean either the gun or the holster before taking it out? Not many people do, they clean a gun after they use it and put it away. Quite often they'll leave it away for weeks before they take it out again, but they will not stop to check it but assume it is just as pristine as when they put it away. Now, think of how quickly house dust builds up on everything else in your house - would you leave your PC monitor uncleaned for weeks? Especially in a dusty environment like Southern California. I was taught to check and clean a gun both before and after use. It might seem excessive to you, maybe your PPK can handle dust and lint just fine, but I used to shoot target pistols with very fine tolerances and they did not like dust at all.

            "....I have trouble believing that ammo too weak is a greater cause of jamming...." I'm not sure if it's a greater cause, but a problem we used to see in the '90s with a lot of was new 9mmP pistols and old ammo, especially cheap European surplus ammo. What we saw was pistols with the main spring changed to work better with the P+ ammo, I think you called it 9mm Major in the States. P+ not only was more powerful but had a faster burn, making a sharper blow on the action. Some pistols, like your friend's Glock, could have a replacement spring to go with the more powerful loaded 9mmP ammo. In the UK we already had special 9mmP ammo for the Sterling which could not be fired in many older pistols, such as the Luger, without breaking it. Conversely, Browning Hi-Powers resprung for the Sterling ammo would often choke on old surplus rounds. The most dangerous case was old Sten guns - the mechanism needs the bolt to return to the open position for the sear to engage, and when loaded with the low-powered 9mmP it would not recoil far enough to reach the sear, resulting in the SMG continuing to fire on auto after you released the trigger until the mag had emptied!

            If you want firsthand experience of a failure to cycle, try loading old 9mm Largo into a pistol designed for 9x23 Winchester. DO NOT try it the other way round, especially with any of the older Spanish Astra pistols, or your firsthand may lose several fingers!

            1. Local G
              Holmes

              You're a tough one, Matt Bryant.

              "it had actually gone back about two-thirds of normal travel"

              In his wildest dreams, James Bond couldn't look through the front gun sight of his PPK, pull the trigger, and determine how far back the slide had traveled. I apologize for every mean thing I've ever said to you.

              "I did try and use my ESP to scan through the brass walls."

              I hope you're not buying your ammo at the flea market. When you are holding high powered explosives 2 feet from your head, I don't think you should be penny-pinching.

              This is what I meant: I'm looking at two boxes of cartridges in front of me. One says "Federal 380 automatic 90 gr. (grain) jacketed hollow point bullet" The other "Remington 380 automatic 88 gr."

              I had a box of 92 gr. which I was using when the gun jammed. I have never used 60 gr. nor am I interested in knowing if they are on the market.

              "The resulting recoil was not strong enough to push the slide all the way back to extract the round and chamber a new one."

              Do you refer to both the backward and forward movement of the slide as the recoil or is the backward motion the recoil and the forward return the counter recoil? Although I don't know for certain, but my Walther seems to perform those functions during the counter recoil when the slide is moving forward.

              "problem was inside the sealed cartridge"

              "which meant that only half the powder actually burned."

              And you figured that out how, Professor Einstein?

              1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                Boffin

                Re: You're a tough one, Matt Bryant.

                ".....and determine how far back the slide had traveled..." It was a guesstimate, thanks.

                "....I hope you're not buying your ammo at the flea market...." This was supposedly quality .22LR Remington from the States. I won't say too many bad things as it was the only dud round I ever had from them, I never even had a primer misfire with their ammo before then.

                ".....When you are holding high powered explosives 2 feet from your head...." Erm... .22LR, high-powered? You mentioned 90gr bullets so I assume your PPK was chambered for 9mm Short (.380 ACP)? That would make it roughly twice as powerful in terms of muzzle energy. I once saw a similar .22LR pistol (a Ruger Standard) fail and the bolt flew back and hit the firer in the face. With your PPK such a failure would most likely lead to a serious injury, but all that guy got was a bloody nose.

                "....And you figured that out how, Professor Einstein?" Before firing the round looked identical to all the others in the box. Like I said, the bullet exited the barrel and I managed to extract the duff cartridge by manually working the slide. After firing I could see into the cartridge case as the bullet sealing the mouth of the case was no longer there.... <palm-meets-forehead>

                "....Do you refer to both the backward and forward movement of the slide...." Recoil = backwards movement of the slide which includes the ejection of the spent cartridge; return (to battery) = forward movement which includes the next round being pushed into the chamber. At least those were the terms I was taught long, long ago, days of short trousers, etc. The Sako's automatic action is roughly equivalent to the PPKs in principle, only with much slimmer ammunition. It was also a very odd-looking pistol due to it being a specialised design for target shooting. A very nice piece of Finnish engineering, sadly, they don't make them anymore.

                Funnilly enough, I was quite proud to claim I never had trouble with the coppers or shot at a living creature with that gun, but I did both one day (no, not shot a copper). A neighbour asked me to shoot his dog that had been run-over and was obviously too far gone for the vet to be called. Mission of mercy completed, I was promptly arrested by a passing constable! Luckily enough, the magistrate saw it my way.

                1. This post has been deleted by its author

                2. Local G

                  Re: Excellent work, Matt Bryant.

                  You should consider doing a tv show called "The Handguns Of Navarone." Every week the show opens with you saying: "Hello. I'm Norman Navarone and welcome to the handguns of Navarone." Traveling each week to one of the world's leading manufacturers of handguns, like a David Attenborough cum Bear Grylls, you would critique each factory's production and recommend which weapon the viewer should buy and for what purpose. Good idea, huh?

                  This thread reminded me to clean my gat three months after I last used it. I keep it in a leather belt holster, inside a thick woolen sock (moisture absorbent), inside a brief case. I'm not as crazy about the gun as I used to be . That's probably because it now takes me 15 minutes to remove the slide. :-(

                  1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                    Happy

                    Re: Re: Excellent work, Matt Bryant.

                    "You should consider doing a tv show called "The Handguns Of Navarone."....." Dude, "The Guns of Navarone" was by Alistair MacLean, not John Gardner. But, if you can think of a way we can also throw in test-driving expensive and fast cars in mock car-chases, and maybe advice on how to win at different types of casino card games, basically a "Top Gear" for wannabe Bonds, now that could be fun (especially if we're getting paid to do it!).

                    1. Local G
                      Happy

                      Re: Excellent work, Matt Bryant.

                      No can do expensive cars. We can get a Pinto, maybe even a Gremlin, but I doubt you'd find them satisfactory. If you were willing to dine Grylls style on the flora and fauna around the pistol factories, I'm sure we'd get to shoot a pilot (no entendre intended).

                      BTW, the last few times I removed the slide, I put on a snug rubber glove. Apparently for me gripping the slide and pulling it back is in the same category as walking and chewing gum

                      1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                        Happy

                        Re: Re: Excellent work, Matt Bryant.

                        ".....the last few times I removed the slide....." Two times to worry when you have stripped, cleaned and reassembled your weapon - when you have a part left over and can't remember where the fudge it went, and when you don't have any parts left over but the gun won't work!

                        Never actually seen a Gremlin on the road, only in films, which is strange when you think a lot of Yanks tell me it was their first car at college. Did they all blow up in sunlight?

                        1. Local G

                          Re: Excellent work, Matt Bryant.

                          As you probably know the unassembled Walther has but 3 parts: slide, spring and body. I could have taken the the grips off the handle and shaken it very hard, but something told me not to. Between the effort involved in removing and replacing the slide and loading the magazines at the range, I might take up pinochle again.

                          When I moved to Santa Barbara in '78, I became acquainted with Gremlins. I immediately met a couple who owned one. The friend I was visiting didn't have a car and I didn't know my way around SB, so the four of us went everywhere (for a month, until I knew where I was going) in their Gremlin. I remember looking around, as I disembarked from the back seat, to make sure I was facing away from any one standing around. I also remember them being a combination of a pumpkin and a ball turret. Yet when I looked at pictures of them just now, they didn't look that way at all. A lot better than the cubes you see everywhere today.

                          Enough of this frivolity. Is the Pentagon going to take NATO to war against Eurasia and Eastasia?

                          1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                            Boffin

                            Re: Re: Excellent work, Matt Bryant.

                            "..... the unassembled Walther has but 3 parts: slide, spring and body....." Well, for field stripping, yes, but the actual gun itself is made up of a lot more components (34 for the PPK, http://www.tumblr.com/tagged/walther?before=1349664842, don't get distracted by the attractive P99 holstering technique 3 pics down!), especially the trigger group and hammer mechanism. IIRC, Smith & Wesson had the rights for PPK production in the US and I've heard S&W didn't include instructions in a lot of their manuals for anything beyond the basic field strip and clean, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't learn or have a licenced gunsmith do it for you. The magazine alone is made up of four components (OK, five if you have the pinky extender) and should be disassembled and cleaned regularly as it extends the magazine life and reduces the chance of a feed failure. If you have had your PPK for years and not broken down the internals for cleaning then I would suggest taking it down to your nearest Smith & Wesson dealer for a full cleaning service. If nothing else, after a service you may find the trigger movement suddenly feels a lot more like it did when you first bought it, and they might find a worn component due replacement before it breaks when you actually need it. Happy shooting!

                            ".....Is the Pentagon going to take NATO to war against Eurasia and Eastasia?" Don't be silly! The Russians want to sell us their gas and the Chinese have realised that being the largest exporter in the World only works if the largest importer in the World is actually buying. With the election silly season in full swing you can't take the posturing of the US politicians too seriously, but Shrillary does seem to have a bee in her bonnet over Syria, so if Obambi does get back in you might see an escalation of US involvement in Syria. And after the Libyan embassy attack, expect any US involvement in Syria, even of "advisers", to be replete with armour and weaponry, and nothing attracts the Jihadis like the sight of Yanks in bodyarmour.

                            1. Local G
                              Joke

                              Re: Excellent work, Matt Bryant.

                              Thanks for the link to the diagram. The new guns are so beautiful they could be worn as cuff links and tie tacks with Armani and Prada. The days of disassembling a pistol are over for me. It's aerosol gun scrubbers and some Hoppe's in the barrel. Btw, a perusal of the slide, informs that it's not a PPK, rather a PPK/S. And where the pictures of the Walthers say "Smith and Wesson" on the slide, mine says "Interarms, Alexandria, Virginia." It's got some dings and a couple of tiny rust spots that I fixed. It's not registered.

                              "The Russians want to sell us their gas and the Chinese have realised that being the largest exporter in the World only works if the largest importer in the World is actually buying." That's true in an infinite world with infinite resources, which ours is not any more. Yes, Russia wants to sell its gas. But its customers in EU recently got very uppity and began an extra-national investigation of Gazprom's pricing policies. Customers who get 25% of their gas from Gazprom want to tell them how much to charge. As if they had another source. That must be very irritating.

                              Yes, China wants to remain the world's largest exporter. But not at the price of abrogating their claim to the islands in the South China Sea and the ones in the East which are in dispute with Japan. Many ships of the US Navy are sailing there to join the fleet already there. The US, as White Knight, is championing the claims of Philippines, Taiwan, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, and Indonesia. Only the cynical will think the US is in it for as much oil as they can get.

                              You seem to think that money hath charms to soothe the savage nations and you may be right. We will have to wait and see from which quarter the wind blows. Hasn't Russia already put a lot on the line for Syria? While the US, not so secretly, has been arming the rebels? Now the US wants to purge the rebellion of the terrorists. They are giving the media stories of car bombs and snaps of the murder of unarmed Syrian soldiers. Will the terrorist element just go away, will they be white washed, or will they take up their American given arms against their patrons? Another can of worms.

                              Is it merely a coincidence that so much of the world's fighting today is in areas which have deposits of oil or thought to have them? Iraq, Libya, the Falklands, Sudan, Iran and several in Africa?

                              "you might see an escalation of US involvement in Syria." If you see an escalation of US involvement, you'll see a simultaneous break with Russia and maybe with China, which won't be good for the global economy.

                              MAD kept the world out of trouble since the 50's. In 1972 the US and Russia signed the anti-ballistic missile treaty and the world was calm knowing that mutually assured destruction was keeping everyone safe. In 2002 Bush withdrew from the treaty. In 2007 construction began on anti-ballistic missile installations in Eastern European members of NATO. The countries which formerly had been buffers states for the Soviet Union were now missile sites for the US/NATO on Russia's border.

                              Since April 2008 there have been 11 explosions of ammunition dumps in Russia. In addition to the couple in Sudan. Can they all be chalked up to carelessness?

                              If the Russians call the US/NATO's bluff, it must be soon. Before NATO's anti-ballistic missile sites are operational and a game changer.

                              1. Local G
                                Facepalm

                                Didn't mean the joke icon at all.

                                (It could have been a gremlin)

                              2. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                                Boffin

                                Re: Excellent work, Matt Bryant.

                                ".....mine says "Interarms, Alexandria, Virginia."....." Friend in the States says Interams had the franchise to licence manufacture before Smith & Wesson. Good ones are collector's items now.

                                "......It's not registered....." Bad Local Dupe! Get thee to a police station, pronto! I assume that means you can't sell it to a collector either?

                                "....Customers who get 25% of their gas from Gazprom want to tell them how much to charge...." I know, ain't it hilarious! When the politicians started talking about basing all their energy supplies around "cheap" Russian gas there were a few dissenting voices that pointed out the Russians would have them over a barrel, but they were ignored. Now, having trashed their own local gas industries, and in Germany's case having taken the suicidal route of switching off their nuke stations so they require four times as much gas, it really is farcial for them to be suggesting they can dictate a price! Where are they going to go if the Russians say "nyet!"?

                                ".....claim to the islands in the South China Sea and the ones in the East....." The Chinese do not seem to be pushing as hard as they could, and the Japanese in particular are avoiding conforntation, so I suspect a deal will be hammered out.

                                ".....fighting today is in areas which have deposits of oil or thought to have them? Iraq, Libya, the Falklands, Sudan, Iran and several in Africa?...." There is a higher correllation with the popularity of Islam and fighting than oil. For example, Chechnya may have had oil pipelines but didn't actually produce any oil, but it did have plenty of Islamic extremists. Afghanistan and Pakistan are not oil-rich. The Falklands was fought over because of national symbolism before oil was discovered in the area, and Drag Queen Kirchner is just using it as a means to distract the masses from the mess she is making of the Argentine economy. As regards the Middle East, the various local ethnic groups have been happilly killing each other long before the discovery of oil, and will probably still be killing each other with gusto long after we're all pottering about in electric cars.

                                "......Since April 2008 there have been 11 explosions of ammunition dumps in Russia...." Before the Wall came down the Soviet record for accidents was even worse, but it was often to cover up arms being diverted and sold off on the black market. I suspect some of the recent "accidents" in Russia might have a similar cause. As regards Sudan, they have the typical Arabic automatic reaction of blaming everything on the Eeeeeevul Jooooooooooos rather than admitting their own incompetence.

                                ".....Before NATO's anti-ballistic missile sites are operational and a game changer." Seeing as NATO have given the Russians the full spec, and they know the current planned "barrier" would not stop the majority of a full Russian strike, it is no longer the game-changing threat it was. It is still good for knocking down the odd Iranian/Nork/Chinese ICBM, but that won't bother Putin.

                                1. Local G
                                  Happy

                                  Re: Excellent work, Matt Bryant.

                                  "NATO have given the Russians the full spec" Reagan famously said: "Trust but verify." For the last few years, we've been telling the Russians: "Trust and let's skip verification."

                                  http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/04/world/europe/russian-general-threatens-pre-emptive-attacks-on-missile-defense-sites.html

                                  http://english.ruvr.ru/2012_10_17/Why-do-Americans-need-an-air-force-base-in-Poland/

                                  No wonder they're pissed off.

                                  " the Soviet record for accidents was even worse" You're destroying everything I believe in. Sabotage is passe? Gone like the little, round, black bomb with a smoldering fuse tossed into a landau carrying the Duke and Duchess? What the hell does the CIA spend double digit billions on if not saboteurs? Oh, they're moles. Aren't CIA payments the fifth largest item in Russia's GDP?

                                  "I know, ain't it hilarious! " Yep, that would have made a great Monty Python skit. NATO wearing armor, raising and lowering their visors, yelling out what terms they expect to buy the gas, ducking behind John Cleese (US) for cover when the terms get yelled back.

                                  "I suspect a deal will be hammered out." The Chinese are in no hurry to start drilling. As long as oil producers today are willing to take dollars for oil, the Chinese will offload some of their incredible shrinking greenbacks. And don't the Chinese love to hammer out deals when they get to hold the hammer and you don't?

                                  "There is a higher correllation with the popularity of Islam and fighting than oil." Good point. What would Islam be like today if there were no oil in the Middle East? Or if Israel weren't there? Or if both Israel and oil weren't there?

                                  "..It's not registered..... Get thee to a police station, pronto!" Wait a minute. What's the difference between me going to a police station and a cash and carry collector going to the police station with the same pistol? The police in Ventura aren't clairvoyant and able to figure out who never registered it.

                                  "Good ones are collector's items now." What's a good one? In 40 years mine has been fired maybe 250 times. There are 3 or 4 blemishes on the slide (totaling the size of a quarter) where moisture caused slight pitting. (that's when I began keeping it in a thick wool sock). I restored the spots with fine steel wool and bluing. They're visible but just barely. The firing pin housing has never been removed, nor the grips, nor the hammer mechanism. No scratches. It is 40 years old and in very good shape, but not mint. I really don't need it any more. I don't need the proceeds from selling it. And I don't need to go to the police station. What should I do?

                                  1. Matt Bryant Silver badge

                                    Re: Re: Excellent work, Matt Bryant.

                                    ".....Sabotage is passe?....." Well, in the case of NATO and the Russians it is. You have to think of the balance of the political fallout of getting caught versus the minor gain of blowing up a Russian weapons dump, and Russia has thousands of weapon dumps stacked high with Cold War weapons. A while back someone suggested the US should remove the threat of the Russian navy by just offering to buy the whole fleet. It was just rusting away at anchor, but the answer was that the cost of mothballing and the doing the minimum with that fleet was what was stopping the Russians modernising - if we bought their fleet then they would no longer have to maintain the old one and could afford to build new and better ships. Similarly, the cost to the Russians of maintaining the thousands of Cold War weapons dumps, sites and equipment is a massive burden, so if anyone is "sabotaging" it then it's probably the Kremlin themselves.

                                    "......And don't the Chinese love to hammer out deals when they get to hold the hammer and you don't?...." Agreed, but I can see the Chinese doing a deal to share the hammer.

                                    "......What would Islam be like today if there were no oil in the Middle East?....." The Islamic ethnic groups have been killing each other and fighting with other religions long before the discovery of oil or the creation of Israel. Just look at current events in Syria where Israel is not involved and oil is a minor consideration.

                                    ".....I really don't need it any more......" Do they do gun amnesties in your area? If you change your mind on the cash, take it to the cops and say you found it clearing out a dead relative's loft, you can't find any paperwork but want to register it, then it should be legal to sell on. But are you sure you want to give away the means of protecting yourself against the Tea Party hordes? :P

                                    1. Local G

                                      Re: Excellent work, Matt Bryant.

                                      " Islamic ethnic groups have been killing each other... long before..." True, but it was labor intensive work then; before oil money flowed into their treasuries and bought cell phones to detonate car bombs. Killing 50 Iraqis in a cafe with a scimitar today just doesn't cut it anymore.

                                      " I can see the Chinese doing a deal." Yeah? Did you happen to see the terms of the deal? Japan isn't getting title to Boardwalk and Park Place anytime soon. If they're lucky they'll get a small piece of Mediterranean and Baltic Avenues. Mineral and fishing rights may be a separate deal.

                                      "You have to think of the balance of the political fallout of getting caught versus the minor gain of blowing up a Russian weapons dump." What do you say about the gain of blowing a nuclear reactor at Chernobyl? Yep, that's what I thought you'd say. It's a particularly favorite conspiracy theory of mine. Are you familiar with it?

                                      I have to thank you for your help with the Walther. I never should have been commenting about guns here, but then you wouldn't have linked me to the diagram. Obviously, I'm disinterested in the weapon, which is why I never registered it. I will call the police and see what I can do about registering it now. (from a pay phone and I'll use your name :-)

            2. Ron Christian

              Re: the gun you have on you

              Regarding grime on a gun, I think it was Massad Ayoob in one of his self-defense books who talked about teaching a personal defense class at a small town police station, and discovering that many of the officers had not pulled their weapons out of the holster in years, the weapons were filthy with accumulated grime, and the action on one (a revolver) was completely frozen -- wouldn't cycle at all. Maintenance is important, especially if your life depends on it.

      2. Ron Christian

        Re: the gun you have on you

        Not nonsense at all. When a gun jams, it doesn't (usually) mean the bullet has lodged in the barrel. (When this happens, it's usually a severe defect in the ammunition. Exceedingly rare.) Most often, either the empty casing will not fully eject from the gun, causing a "stovepipe" (casing sticking up out of the mechanism) or (less often) the extractor will fail to grab the casing and pull it from the chamber.

        In the case of a stovepipe, one is trained to swipe one's hand across the top of the gun to dislodge the empty casing and allow the gun to completely cycle. If the extractor has failed catastrophically, there's not much you can do. If the extractor is still working, albeit unreliably, you can cycle the slide manually and try to get another round in the chamber.

        Causes of a stovepipe are usually the slide gummed up or something wrong with the recoil spring. A friend put a stronger recoil spring in his Glock to supposedly make the recoil more manageable, and ended up with the only Glock I'd ever heard of that wouldn't cycle reliably. Putting the stock spring back in cured the problem.

        But even if the gun has failed to cycle, the round you just fired really did fire, and the bullet went where you were pointing.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: the gun you have on you

          Thanks for the explanations.

          My main experience with guns are primarily 'paintball' guns (tourney). It always amazes me how complex they are to be able to fire a gelatin capsule at a constant 297 fps without breaking at a rate of 15 bps (not alyways of course - but my Angel G7 is pretty good, and it's fully auto - I can manually fire my Angle 04 Speed at 11 bps (no electronics on that one - much prefer it - more skill required).

          What amazes me more is that 'proper' guns don't seem to be anywhere near as complex, yet still jam up. I know the forces invoved are a lot higher, but then you can also manipulate the projectiles with more force too - I'd have thought someone would have sorted this out by now other than having looser fitting components.

  30. Shiny_Kit
    Coat

    Back on topic...

    I think you will find the Protective Detail for Princess Anne had something a bit bigger than PPKs - from memory it was a 9mm, probably a P38 or a P5, that jammed because the slide had cracked. Definitely not a PPK.

    Never been a big Walther fan, personally, but the PPK is nicely put together (if a bit marginal on power).

    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: Back on topic...

      "I think you will find the Protective Detail for Princess Anne had something a bit bigger than PPKs...." No, this was before the days of real protection, when the Royals often traveled with just one armed bodyguard and in unarmoured vehicles. The actual occasion was 20th March 1974, the kidnapper was - thankfully - just an armed amateur lunatic, but the bodyguard's issue PPK jammed after one shot (which missed) and he was shot three times shielding the Princess, along with the driver, a passerby and a constable that happened on the scene (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anne,_Princess_Royal#Kidnapping_attempt). As part of the review that followed the PPK was binned. The old guard wanted a return to Smith & Wesson .38 revolvers as they are more reliable than autos, those with a military background wanted the Browning Hi-Power, both were in turn replaced by the SIG-Sauer P226 (and the H&K MP7 for punching holes in car bodywork and bodyarmour).

      Amusingly enough, Walther released a "new" version of the old PPK in 2000, the PPK/E, the only difference seeming to be it is cheaper as it is made in Hungary by FEG. I suppose they could explain a new Bond still having a PPK as a "new and improved" PPK/E.

    2. Ron Christian

      Re: Back on topic...

      Re: the slide had cracked -- perhaps by practicing with overpressure ammo? There was a problem in the US for awhile with Beretta slide failure, but as I recall it was traced back to using overpressure (SMG "black ring") ammo. Beretta changed the slide design anyway.

  31. Curtis Crowson
    Holmes

    Original Gun

    I heard an interview with Ian Fleming when I was young. He said the point of the original gun was to show that Bond never really needed it. Bond's real weapon was his quick wits, charm, and unfailing intuition, rendering the gun a paper weight to be carried only because it was required. So Bond wanted to carry the most useless hint of a gun he could get away with, which the 0.25 Barretta fit to a tee.

    Ian realized that he wasn't getting this point across after being assailed by readers about how awful the .25 Baretta was (Ian's actual point) and that no-one in their right mind would carry a .25 Barretta for field work.

    Ian still maintained that Bond really only needed a gun as a last resort, since Bond, himself, was really his best weapon.

    Getting a better gun was tacit to Bond saying he wasn't good enough to save the day on is own.

  32. thomas newton

    John Gardner

    had some interesting choices for Bond's sidearms - the HK VP-70 and the ASP 9mm among others - the latter specifically made with the idea of being a concealable, but uncompromised performance handgun.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ASP_(handgun)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heckler_%26_Koch_VP70

    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Happy

      Re: John Gardner

      ".....the HK VP-70 and the ASP 9mm ...." Kudos to Mr Gardner for the ASP, but the VP-70 was simply too big to be a concealed weapon. IIRC, Gardner also had Bond using a Ruger Blackhawk .44 Magnum in place of the M1917 revolver as the "car gun", which was definately not a lady's gun!

      1. Ron Christian

        Re: John Gardner

        Surely not a Blackhawk -- that's a single action, "cowboy" type pistol where you eject spent cartridges one at a time and load new cartridges one at a time. Are you sure it wasn't a Redhawk? Double action, and the cylinder swings out for easy reloading.

        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
          Happy

          Re: Re: John Gardner

          "Surely not a Blackhawk......" Yeah, well I never said Mr Gardner knew anything about guns, which is surprising seeing as he used to be a Royal Marine. In the first Bond book Gardner wrote, "Licence Renewed", he has Bond pushing the muzzle of the Blackhawk out of a gunport in the doormirror of his speeding Saab, which suggests trying to fire that mini-cannon with your wrist at an angle - sounds like a good way to hurt yourself! Probably not very accurate either. Talking of inaccurate, one of the other guns Gardner had in one of his novels was the Gyrojet pistol, which was actually a mini rocket-launcher. It had awful accuracy as it worked by forcing the rocket back onto a fixed hammer, which usually bent the nose of the rocket. Amazingly, a few were actually taken to Vietnam! After reading "Licence Renewed" I didn't bother with any of the other Gardner books.

          1. Ron Christian

            Re: John Gardner

            Wow. Speaking as the owner of a Super Blackhawk, one of those things with full load .44 magnum has a tremendous recoil and huge amount of barrel flip. It's one of those guns where you're at the range and you've shot 12 rounds through it and you think "ok, that's enough".

            I'm not sure what the saab gunport looks like, but if it's a port in the window, I'd expect the barrel flip from that monster at least crack the glass, maybe even shatter it.

  33. Ken 16 Silver badge

    rohrbaugh r9

    Same size, more technical, bigger bang?

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Back in the mid-1980's there was a front page article in the NY Law Journal featuring judges and their guns. Turns out the PPK was the the most common. I was never a fan, mostly due to my doubts about the effectiveness of the .380 cartridge. My preference was a S&W J-frame Model 36 with .38 +P+ hollow points. Problem, of course, is that +P+ really does a number on a light framed gun like that, so target practice inevitably winds up being less realistic but still expensive. Also, even though it was much smaller than a full size service pistol, carrying the thing was damned inconvenient. I'm glad I don't have to anymore. Lots of ex-law enforcement in the US don't bother getting a carry permit after retirement and the same is true of this ex-lawyer as well. It's actually too bad that Flemming gave into the "experts" on his choice of sidearm for Bond, there's something that really rings true about the meme "Bond wanted to carry the most useless hint of a gun he could get away with" for some of us.

  35. Matt Bryant Silver badge
    Facepalm

    That Bond gun that never was.

    Funny story about how Bond ended up back with the PPK, as related to me this afternoon by a friend that used to be in the USMC.

    One of his postings was working on the US military competition in the 80's to find a replacement for the M1911 pistol. To cut a long story short, the competition came about because NATO agreed on 9mm Parabellum for future pistols, but the US Army wanted to keep the old .45 ACP. In response to a challenge from the US Army, a contest was run to test the various contenders (just about all being European pistols), and the gun makers soon started accusing the US Army of simply looking for any excuse to reject anything not an M1911.

    At the same time, Heckler & Koch wanted Eon Productions to select an H&K pistol for the next Bond movie "A View To A Kill", namely the PSP (better known as the P7 or P7M in the States) in the hope of driving up sales in the States. Unfortunately, some bright spark in H&K offered the PSP to the Yanks for their trial. My friend was on the selection panel that tested the PSP and he was so impressed he bought one himself. But the US Army still found a way to reject it. The PSP used a delayed blowback system by porting off gas and the US Army claimed that this could lead to fouling and jamming, evoking the image of the problems with the original M-16 rifle.

    Apparently, Eon Productions were worried about alienating the US audience by having Bond using something the US Army had just said wasn't good enough for them, so the PSP idea was binned and the old PPK resurrected.

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