Monday, November 16, 2009

Atrocity Exhibition.

In the Place Where Great Britain Used To Be, arms collectors are largely reduced to owning legally "deactivated" firearms. The process is involved, pretty much permanently ruins the gun for any use other than as a source of spare parts, and costs around £80 (~$135) according to my pal staghounds.

While the world is unlikely to miss a few extra Mosin Nagant 91/30s or Arminius revolvers, .455 Hand Ejectors don't exactly grow on trees...

For a good look at the carnage, go to Bonham's auction site and plug "deactivated" into the search engine. (The Luger was also especially painful...)

BONUS: An entire business dedicated to selling deactivated guns! There's something immensely sad about an adult human being actually paying money for a deactivated GSG-5 .22. That's only half a step above a deactivated Red Ryder.


Anonymous said...

I suspect there will come a day, in the very near future, where the Queen's subjects will come to regret turning all those pefectly good firearms into paperweights and wallhangers.

I expect a lot of Britons are already there...

--Wes S.

staghounds said...

The whole de-act thing is strange, not least the economics.

Quite a few of the guns will make far less at auction- and remember, the owner only gets 2/3- than they would if they had shipped them to the U. S.

Which could have been done very easily with the antiques. I mean, a .476 Enfield, a Colt lightning, and a Webley Kaufman?

Anonymous said...

I have a WW-II bringback of my father's: An old Schutzen single-shot .22 target rifle which dates from the late 1800s or early 1900s.

My son lives in Germany. He can't have that rifle, there, unless it's welded. Here, it's worth somewhere in the neighborhood of $1,500. Welded? What, fifty bucks?

Government does not exist for the benefit of the governed. Or, more accurately, "ruled".


Peripatetic Engineer said...

What's the point? Why not just buy a replica?

og said...

I felt the same way about the way they treated the "Cash for Clunkers" cars. Obscene.

BobG said...

Sad state of affairs.

Word verification: uncest


Ed Foster said...

Hey Og. The latest on "Cash for Clunkers" is that the vehicle most traded for with the turn-in of a Ford F-150 pickup was an F-150 pickup.

As for the Brits, they've been a collection of mice since Passchendale at least.

Their empire was established by a mercenary army composed of conquered peoples, and World War One was the first time since the Wars of the Roses that the common Britisher had to stand up and get shot down.

Scotland was drained of it's manpower in the 18th century. The tiny little island of Lewis, in the Hebrides, sent 10,000 men to the military between 1700 and 1800, and they were typical.

India was conquered by a Scot, leading Irish farm boys, and the local allies Britain hired or threatened into alliance.

During the Napolionic wars, 30% of the British army was recruited in Ireland, another 10% recruited in the Irish slums and stews of Britain's cities. Among the nominally English and Welsh regiments, 30% were Irish born, another 10% British born of Irish parents.

In the Scottish units, the figure was 60% Irish, and Scottish birth was not a requirement for enlistment in a Highland regiment until the 20th century. A recruit only had to be at least 6 feet tall and speak Gaelic.

C.S. Forrester puts the number of Irish in the Royal Navy in the 1790's as one in three. Add in the Scots, Welsh, and Cornish, and it's probable Englishmen were a minority even in the senior service.

Add in all the Sikhs and Gurkas, Canadians, New Zealanders, and Australians used and used up in the last few centuries, and a picture emerges of a people who have been defenseless sheep since at least the English Civil War.

Earlier than that actually. The Spanish Armada was defeated by bad weather and Celtic speaking freebooters from Cornwall, Devon, and Dorset.

The English thought so little of this very un-British rabble that after the war, Elizabeth sold the ships freely volunteered for the national defense, and left the crippled veterans to beg in the streets of Bristol and Swansea.

Do you wonder that the First World War was such a shock to a people so far removed from reality?

Or that they've elected a collection of Socialist/Pacifist loonies to "protect" them ever since they whimpered back from the trenches of France in 1918?

Wolfwood said...

Eh, it's better than this atrocity. (SIR)

ajdshootist said...

Tam if you are intrested have a look at Holts Auctioneers Dec 17th Dec sale Lot no 1011 that my Triple lock up for sale as i cant use it i thought i would sell it as its hurts me to even look at it now that we are not allowed to use them.AJD

Anonymous said...

"Their empire was established by a mercenary army composed of conquered peoples"

Small population base, wealthy, massive emmigration for about 200 years, of course they'd use mercenaries.

If they'd been smart they'd would not have lost North america either - that was a huge bungle.

That being said they lined up bravely enough in 1914+ in the "War that Destroyed the Western World".

Mike W. said...

I felt the same way about the way they treated the "Cash for Clunkers" cars. Obscene.

Yeah, watching a perfectly good Vette get destroyed was disgusting.

Ruzhyo said...

Mr. Foster,

Thank you for the awesome history lesson. It puts many of the themes of British military history in context.

Revolver Rob said...

How do they deactivate these guns? I'm curious to know, because most can be field stripped, and dry fired. Do they weld up the firing pin channel?


James family outpost, Iowa. said...

Wow, never have I held more dear the words of wisdom from the late, great Mr. Heston, "... when you pry them from my cold, dead hands."
God bless my ancestors for abandoning that god forsaken cold, wet, island for the comforts of Kentucky 150 years ago.

Anonymous said...

The problem with Ed Foster's British 'history lesson' is that has yet to learn what the word 'British' means.


Back to the point, if you think it's sad from the outside looking in; imagine how sad it is to be on the inside looking out.