It seems wrong to call a gun 'cute'...
February 15, 2008 11:21 AM   Subscribe

Minature gunsmithing is an amazing art form.

The firearms are exact replicas of their full sized counterparts, down to the smallest details, and the creation of one was often a requirement to be considered a master gunsmith.

Though if you want to collect them, they are not inexpensive.
posted by quin (20 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Looks impressive but maybe it's a clever hoax and really he's making big coins. But to be on the safe side, I'll start frisking the gnomes before letting them fish in my garden pond.
posted by Abiezer at 11:26 AM on February 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

Ow, ow, ow, tiny bullets!
posted by Artw at 11:27 AM on February 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

These people terrify me, because they are far far far more driven than I will ever be. Just thinking about it makes me want to take a nice nap in the sun somewhere.
posted by aramaic at 11:32 AM on February 15, 2008

At first I thought this was doing to be a double of this post. But no! Different tiny guns!
posted by hattifattener at 11:36 AM on February 15, 2008

I don't see any reference to actually shooting them. These guns, they shoot?
posted by R. Mutt at 11:49 AM on February 15, 2008

Fantastic stuff, thanks -- but yes, do they shoot? I'd imagine not, but...
posted by Pantengliopoli at 11:57 AM on February 15, 2008

Reminds me of that working replica Ferrari 312, but much lower down on the obsessive scale.
posted by jaimev at 12:09 PM on February 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

Now, can they fit that technology in a pocket watch, or… a ring?!
posted by JBennett at 12:12 PM on February 15, 2008

Amazing until the Lilliputians get hold of this. Then it shall be chaos.
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:14 PM on February 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

Those are really big in Malaysia, I hear.

Or... uhh... errr... small. Whatever.
posted by miss lynnster at 12:15 PM on February 15, 2008

A 1/3 scale revolver with scale sized bullets to show that it loads and functions just like the real thing. (image)

Colt .25 Automat in 1/3 scale. Completely functional. Nickle plated finish and mother-of-pearl grips with the rampant Colt logo. (image)

So I guess at least some of them work.
posted by rtha at 12:16 PM on February 15, 2008

I see the phrase, "fully functional," and a couple of the photos show miniature bullets, so yes, they shoot.

Is it Machinist Day at MeFi? About time.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 12:17 PM on February 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

If you want a mini on the cheap, you can get a North American Arms mini-revolver for a couple hundred. I've heard that some undercover cops carry the smallest model stashed in a cigarette pack.
posted by 445supermag at 12:22 PM on February 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

Very cool. Thanks for the post. I concur, I'd love to see some shooting going on...hopefully at miniature mechanical ducks on a moving rope.
posted by Atreides at 12:45 PM on February 15, 2008

I'd love love love to have one of these in 1/3 (or so) scale, but I bet it'd be even more expensive than the real thing. (Even an airsoft one (albeit a fullsize replica) is over $1600.)
posted by pax digita at 12:45 PM on February 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

Back in the early 80's Tippmann Arms Company built working 1/2 scale versions of the M2HB, Model 1917 Water Cooled and the 1919a4 machine guns that fired belted .22 ammunition.
posted by Tenuki at 12:49 PM on February 15, 2008

The author Steven Millhauser --Martin Dressler (Pulitzer 1997) and Edwin Millhouse -- wrote a good essay on the hypnotic spell that miniaturization weaves for some (raises hand high.) You can read the full text of it at Harper's Mag (Sub. needed) or find it on Jstor or some other such online college library journals database. It's worth the read.

I'm looking at 4 keychain type cheapo's from where I sit that fire red plastic caps, also a couple of cars (one from the 30s and one from the 40s) or planes (a p-51 and Mig 17). It's weird I've never outgrown them, but it makes it easy for people to buy me gifts.

BTW the minitures this gun smith makes and the Ferrari builder put together are on a whole unique level of obsession. Seems it's even better to live inside a miniature replica, than it is to live in something that's real sized. Cheaper and less dangerous that's for certain, but it seems that perhaps, in ways, these replicas are more real . The Millhauser essay talks about that.
posted by Skygazer at 1:09 PM on February 15, 2008

I forgot to mention that the name of the above Millhauser essay is: The Fascination of the Miniature.

Sorry about that...
posted by Skygazer at 1:16 PM on February 15, 2008

There's something that utterly fascinates me about the idea of "bootstrapping" especially when it's in regards to the manufacture of complex objects or products. I love how many of this guy's tools are of his own design and construction, or appropriated for use despite being designed for other purposes.

Like the FPP a few weeks ago about the guy who manufactures his own vacuum tubes practically from raw materials, when you look at the workshop of someone like this, it's clear that they could probably make just about anything they put their minds to.
posted by Kadin2048 at 1:34 PM on February 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

BTW the minitures this gun smith makes and the Ferrari builder put together are on a whole unique level of obsession.

Exactly. I was impressed by the overall efforts when I first came across the guy's work, but this blew me away:

A miniature firearm, by definition, is identical to the larger weapon it is modeled on in every way except size. The metal is the same alloy, hardness and color. The hardwood grips are checkered in the same patterns. The interiors of the barrels duplicate the rifling. In short, every aspect of the original is re-created,

The idea that in these little tiny 1/3rd scale works, that the barrels were rifled was just too much awesome for my head to contain.

His descriptions of how he went about building his own tools was pretty nifty as well.
posted by quin at 1:46 PM on February 15, 2008

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