A bit of Guns and Ammo History

The guns we going to talk about in here are handheld guns. Handguns that can be used with only one or two hands and long guns made to use with both hands.. From the start, gunmetal and old-time technology made guns very heavy and cumbersome. As technology evolved and new metals were discovered, guns started to take the form of today’s modern appearance.. The gunpowder was what triggered the gun evolution and was originally from Kina where
they used it some 1000 years BC.. To begin with, for only peaceful purposes but then it come to Europe. :)
In the 12 century the first "cannons" came to life and in the beginning shooting arrows only just as a "turbocharged" bow.

One of the first handheld guns

Potassium nitrate, Sulphur and Charcoal was what gunpowder was made of; the burn intensity was controlled by the form and weight of the powder grains. When powder burns it transform to gas, gas that’s needs 400 times the same space as the powder. And that in 0 Celsius temperatures, when the temp arise so will also the volume of the gas. The pressure that builds up from the gas pushes the bullet out of the barrel in an increasing velocity.
In the 18nth century the primer was developed and in the beginning was used to ignite the powder from the side of the barrel.

One of the best from the 1800 something

When blackpowder burns it generates a lot of smoke, that will after a few shots turn the visibility to zero for the shooter. Alfred Nobel, one of Sweden most famous innovators in the end of the 18nth century invents the ballistit."Smoke free" gunpowder with all the advantages of the former blackpowder but without the disadvantages of it

Alfred Nobel 1833-1896

AlfredNobel 1833-1896

In the last years of 1800, all the technology both in chemistry and metalworking produced "our" cartridge of today.

A cartridge case with the primer in it, a bullet in the front and in between the smokeless powder

Most cartridge cases had almost straight lines in the beginning, just like the most of all handgun cartridge cases

of today but today's high pressure and small calibers cartridges have a bottleneck case just as the two above.

Paul and Wilhelm Mauser

Paul Mauser 1838-1914 and his brother, Wilhelm Mauser 1834-1882,are two of the fathers of today's modern rifle .

Theirs patents and designs can be seen today in almost all the hunting and competition rifles. Paul's last and most

famous gun, the M98 is still one of the top guns thanks to the inbuilt strength of its design and foolproof functionality.

For handguns, enter Samuel Colt

Samuel Colt

1814-1862 with a lot of patents for revolver handguns and


Moses Browning

John Moses Browning 1855-1926 with pistol designs. Those two gentlemen's designs can still be found on today handguns.

ake a look at this evolution of today. We are back at cartridges without a case just like in the beginning of our story.

G11 H&K and the 4,73x33 mm caseless cartridge.



Let us take a closer loook at the different years of importance for the guns, powders and cartridges.

1247 First time ever gunpowder was used in Europe, (The Siege of Seville)
1350 Edward the third uses cannons against the Scott’s, hand cannons appeared around those years
1397 The word Pistol comes from Pistola in Italy, crude handguns where known at that time.
1430 Bullets fired by guns in combat can penetrate the armour of that time
1498 Those last years before 1500, rifling is invented.
1550 Rifled arms are made and innovations like “hair trigger” are in use in Germany.
1630 The flintlock gun is born and a few years later the French introduced the bayonet.

1690 The English army was equipped with the flintlock gun.
1730 The first hammerless sport guns where made in Prague at that time.
1760 Duelling pistols take the place of rapiers and swords when time to settle the quarrels between

gents in Europe.
1789 This is the first patent for single trigger locks for double-barrelled arms.
1800 At that time the duelling pistols are truly masterpieces of gun and art.
1795 Springfield Armory established that year.
1807 Alexander Forsyth patented the percussion cap.


1825 The percussion cap took the place of the flint principle.
1835 Flobert from Paris started to made rimfire cartridges.Rimfire
1835 Colt reinvented parts of the revolving mechanism used in Europe years before :).
1840 Breech-loading guns with the needle type of cartridges are patented this year.

1850 The Minie service rifle is introduced in GB.
1852 C. Lancaster made one of the first under lever guns with centerfire cartridges.
1859 The first patented revolver with central fire cartridges.
1860 The year of the Spencer and Henry rifles.
1863 Alfred Nobel patented the Nitroglycerin
1865 After the Civil war metallic cartridges were introduced.
1866 Winchester was founded that year.
1870 The first European magazine rifle, the Swiss Vetterli.

1873 The Singel Action Army Colt in .45 Colt caliber is born.Peacemaker

1875 The year of the first bolt action military guns.
1887 The Maxim machine gun was adopted by the U.S. arm and Alfred Nobel patented Ballistit, the gunpowder

that replaced blackpowder.
1893 The Borchardt pistol, first to go auto, It was based on Hiram Maxim’s 1884 machine gun patent and on

Winchester’s toggle action on their lever-action carbine. Later on George Luger redesigned that gun to the

Luger P08 pistol and introduced the 9mm Parabellum ( 9mm Luger, 9X19mm)cartridge to it.


1898 Paul Mauser makes his -98 Bolt action gun still made today for civilian use.

The years after 1900 and now..well, iv been on the shooting range with a Mauser rifle made in 1896 for the old 6.5x55 Swedish army ctg and it outperformed a brand new rifle cartridge combination made just a few years ago :)
Most innovations the last 100 years are on the metal that guns and cartridges are made from, bullet and gun powder technology. Thank God thou that are still companies out there who actually employ real humans to make guns and not only C.N.C. computer operated machinery.