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Small Arms of WWI Primer 020: German Dreyse 1907 Pistol

Good old Johnny B had started a revolution
with his pocket pistol in 1899. Manufacturers around the world wanted a piece of this growing
market, but they’d have to avoid his patent somehow… Hi, I’m Othais and this is the German Dreyse
1907 pistol. Let’s take a look in the lightbox. Weighing in at only 1 and a half pounds and
at 6.3” long, this is actually a handy little pocket pistol, definitely in that class with
the FN1900. It has a magazine capacity of 7 rounds. They feed from a detached single
stack box with a heel release. As usual, I have to put this gun down for
a second and we have to talk about someone else. This handsome gentleman is Johann Nicolaus
von Dreyse. Now, he was born in 1787; we would live until 1867, so a lot sooner than this
gun came out, so as you can tell, he didn’t actually design it. Instead he is famous for
his 1841 needle rifle. Now, this is a big deal and it launches his company, Waffenfabrik
von Dreyse. Dreyse’s name was a household one at this point and that’s really important
because it’s going to get bought. You see, the Mauser 1871 rifle, which we’re semi-familiar
with in this series, well, it displaces the needle gun and so the family factory falls
on hard times and by 1901 it’s struggling. So it’s bought out by… a lot of German words.
Let’s try this together and I don’t want any complaints from you guys: Rheinische Metallwaren
und Maschinenfabrik of Sömmerda. Now, this company, RM&M from now on, because I’m not
trying that again, they buy up the, you know, Waffenfabrik von Dreyse, but they’re really
buying the name, and they start slapping it on their best products for marketability.
After that though, we’re done with Dreyse, so… yes, it’s the Dreyse 1907 pistol, but
it’s just branding, okay? The real inventor was actually Louis Schmeisser.
Now Schmeisser, you guys should know him: born 1848, he’s pretty famous in pistol
and rifle design; machine gun design. His sons are also famous: Hugo and Hans, they’re
going to go on to do great things. But, for now, let’s turn back the clock to 1891: he’s
working underneath the big name that we know as Theodore Bergmann. Now, for Bergmann, he’s
working on the first blowback pistols, really. As a matter of fact, it’s sort of debatable
whether he came up with the first blowback at all. He certainly had a patent for it;
we’ll get there in just a second. But, he was beaten just barely by the Dormus. Actually let’s mention that patent now it’s
real quick. You see, Schmeisser had already patented the blowback, he sent in the application…
Bergmann didn’t really remember to pay the fees, so they missed out on a very lucrative
patent, because next thing we know, in 1899 John Browning rolls out his pocket pistol.
Regardless, Schmeisser would help his employer develop the Bergmann 1896 series of pistols,
including the 5mm pocket model, a first in concept, which also preceded Browning’s 1899.
He also likely had a strong hand in both the Bergmann Simplex and Mars pistols, which appeared
after the 1896 proved to be too much for a civilian, and a little too little for the
military. Now around 1905-1906, Louis Schmeisser is going to leave Bergmann and head over to
RM&M. Remember: they’ve already bought the Dreyse name. So, now they have a famous name,
they have an excellent semi-automatic handgun designer, and they’re going to turn their
attention together to pocket pistols because, like we said with the FN1900 episode, that’s
the growing market. That is the boomtown for handgun development. This early patent shows a Simplex-like pistol
with a hinge frame and an inset breach block retained by a mass at the front. Also, a cocking
indicator pin. Below we can see the same idea applied to
a handgun with a magazine in the grip. One that in profile looks very familiar to people
watching this episode. It also sports a separate bolt face which will carry over into our gun
that we’re talking about today. This patent in Schmeisser’s name provides
for a couple of things if you read the text. The number one thing is that he seems to be
concerned about safety. And so what he’s done is that mass that’s on the front end of the
breach block, it’s tilted into the top of the action and the action breaks open, yes
for cleaning, yes for clearing jams, but also there’s really just an element of “this is
the easiest way to get this new breach block in and out of the action”, okay? So, he’s got
a breach block that tilts in, turns up and then locks in, and the reason for that is
so that that mass at the front of the patent will prevent the breach block from coming
all the way out the rear bodily. It will set into the frame; it’s very containable; it’s
very strong. It’s not like those cross screws on the FN1900, or the yoke on the Langenhan
that we’ve seen before. Okay? So that’s his big focus though: safety and
then, yes, some convenience. Now, the next two patents we’re gonna see are both under
the name of RM&M, but they’re obviously done by Schmeisser. As a matter of fact, the American
versions have Schmeisser’s name all over them. Filed in February 1908, many people think
of this as the first Dreyse pistol patent, but if we look closely, yes, it uses a concentric
recoil spring and what will be a familiar trigger and sear mechanism, but it also has
an actual full slide and attached breach block, just like the 1900. Instead of being set by
two screws, it is affixed by a bayonet-style push-and-turn arrangement. Note the separate
bolt face is gone, but the cocking indicator from the previous patent remains. Now, while that patent was granted in Germany,
unlike just about all the Schmeisser and RM&M patents, I can’t find a record of it in any
other country, which means it probably wasn’t granted in other countries, mostly likely
because it very clearly infringed on Browning’s 1899 slide. So, instead, by summer of that
same year, we’re gonna see a new patent, one that when you look at it, is very obviously
the gun that is in my hand. We’ve kept the basic shape and trigger group,
but now the safety breach block is back, along with the bolt face. This apparently also skirts
Browning’s patent on a slide, because, well honestly it’s not a slide. It’s much more
of a cocking arm. And with that, we now have the model 1907
Dreyse. I suppose Schmeisser was working on it the year beforehand. Alright let’s go ahead
and get a closer look at just what makes up this gun though. First thing’s first, let’s talk about this
“slide”. In reality, this is something more along the lines of a cocking bar, because
it’s directly affixed to the breach block, and it’s not really wrapping around the action
of the gun; it skirts that Browning patent, okay? It also has some more utility to it
beyond just being able to operate the gun. Remember: the first patent, and let me get
this oriented, was to have just a short one of these so that it could impact the frame,
back in here, in order to be safer for the shooter. So when this comes back, it’s stopped
bodily by the frame. Well, this is great, and it’s extremely safe, and if you notice,
it’s been rounded out to give even more surface area to really distribute that impact. It’s
really thoughtful, it’s a really good idea and it does its job very well. Also though,
by throwing this up over the top, the original versions of these, they weren’t even milled
out, they were just a solid bar right across the top, lots of extra weight, and the reason
for that is because being a blowback pistol, we only have two things we can really rely
on in order to keep the action sealed up until all the gases vent out the correct hole: now
that’s gonna be the spring pressure and the mass of the breach block. Well, if you have
a massive breach block at the rear of the gun, it’s gonna throw off your balance on
the gun, and it’s going to mean that you have a lot of breach block coming out the back
of the gun. In order to keep this compact and handy, Schmeisser put the weight at the
front. He just went ahead and ran an extension up over the top. So, it’s safer, and it adds
more mass, and by lengthening it and everything and getting it in this position and setting
groves in it, we now have something to grip to operate the breach block easily. So, point
three: this is a great and efficient system. It’s beautiful. And we’ll actually see this
mass forward of the breach block on other guns, like the Winchester 1905, all the way
up until a more recent Ruger police carbine that does this. Alright so, we should probably look at the
disassembly on this gun. So if we look at this lever back here, the first thing you
need to know – right now you can see that it’s de-cocked, because we’re on take two
– sorry guys, I can’t always get everything right the first time, but we’re going to have
to pull the trigger on this gun. So, I’m gonna look inside that chamber – I know you guys
can’t see it all that well, but I can and that’s what’s important – it’s clear. Then
we have to drop the trigger. Well, the reason we have to do this, is because, when this
firing pin is back, the tab below it that sets up against the sear in there, also interrupts
the path of this lever. So you can’t actually unlock the action on one of these without
firing it. So… that’s out our way, and now I can release the lever: we’ll hinge her open.
Alright, if we look inside, I’ve already removed the magazine. We have our disconnector here;
this is a later addition to these guns – we’ll get to that in a moment. We have our sear;
all that good stuff. To further disassemble the gun, it gets a
little bit tricky, because we have to get a hold of this bayonet ring. Now, you can
take a punch or another tool and use this tab here to push that down, and then release
the slide. However, I find that to be incredibly hard and you’d better watch your own eyes
– wear eye protect when disassembling this gun: this spring really wants to go. What
I’ve done is I’ve gone over to the hardware store and just grabbed a little brass coupler.
That way we’re not marring it up and it’s a lot easier to use. Still, technically a
challenge. I’m gonna line it up with the ring and shove it. You’re not going to get to see
a lot of this on camera because I gotta get my palm in there so that I don’t send a spring
flying. But, let me just get her aligned, push, and then I’m going to lift the cocking
arm out of the way – I’ll show you in just one second because I’m desperately controlling
that stiff, stiff spring. There we go. So, what I did, just to review, is I pushed in
on this guy, and I lifted up – oop let me get – I lifted away with that arm. Make sense
guys? Good. So, if I give myself some room, you can see
– and I’m sorry I’m trying to keep this in camera – we can just twist this guy out, and
with a little tugging we’re free to go. So, I think we understand this part well enough
so I’mma set it aside. Let’s get a look at that breach block. Just
like I said: short, compact handy breach block, lots of extra weight across the front, very
firmly attached to each other: milled from the same piece essentially. This is a great
setup. Very safe, lots of weight, the weight is forward to keep that weight up on the barrel,
to keep the gun balanced. Genius. Alright, so, while I’m this far in, I’d like
to point out one other thing that’s kind of interesting if you think about it with this
gun: we now have a two-piece hinged frame, in which our bolt group is in the upper, and
our trigger group and magazine is in the lower. For a lot of you at home that probably just
clicked home, so, I just thought you guys might enjoy that. Getting back to the history, the first buyer
for this pistol is going to be the Royal Sachsen Gendarmerie. The first 700 or so pistols will
be marked “K.S.Gend.” They have a solid operating block; not milled into a trough like the one
we’ve been showing. Likely, this added more weight, and helped with recoil. It also meant
it needed taller sights. The serrations on that cocking bar were raised up off the bar. Now there’s gonna be numerous changes over
the lifecycle of the Dreyse. Honestly, a lot of them overlap each other; they come and
go in weird little fits and spurts. We’re gonna cover most of them by taking some snapshots,
just, of particular number ranges. Don’t count this as gold standard, because, like with
everything, there’s little exceptions. If you want to know more about your Dreyse – you
have one – you should talk to Ed Buffaloe over at the Unblinking Eye. He’s been doing
some great survey work with them, and is working on really honing in on when each change occurred.
So, go ahead and follow the link that’s down in our description and let him know what gun
you have, what features it has, and its serial number. Moving on, by serial 55,000 that trough will
have appeared, although that appeared after the first 700. The Dreyse will be branded
on the side: “Dreyse”. The serrations will be raised and overlap the frame some. Also
by this point we still don’t have an internal disconnector or a lanyard ring. By serial
number 180,000, the serrations are back on the rod alone, not overlapping, and they’re
now milled down into the metal. This disconnector has appeared, along with the lanyard loop.
And we have grip screws! By serial 230,000 the Dreyse has a new teardrop
contour to the rear sight; the serrations are now diagonal and milled into the rod. Also, the takedown notch under the barrel has been omitted. By serial 245,000, we have raised diagonal
serrations; everything else is mostly the same. Alright, that’s a lot to digest, so let’s
go ahead and get a look at the action before getting any deeper into this gun. I’ll take
the time to reassemble the pistol. This is a fairly simple single action striker-fired
pistol, so there isn’t a lot for me to point out. I will say though, if you notice that
as we pull the trigger through, it drives that firing pin a little bit further back
before releasing it. This was not always a feature. It was added at some point, and much
later taken away. It seems to have been done to deal with military hard primers. While
we’re here, we might as well note the cocking indicator is just a pin sticking out of the
back of the striker. The safety for this gun simply blocks the
sear from tipping back, preventing fire. Take note of the positive disconnector: this
was a later addition. It meets up with a milled spot in the breach block. You know, these
two features: not always included on every Dreyse, so if you have an early one you might
not have them in your gun. Alright let’s get this over to Mae. We’ll load up the magazine, and work the bar. The safety is extremely stiff to switch on. But light to switch off. All right, let’s slow this down. Nice! Back to Othais. You know we always thank Mae for shooting,
but this time around I think she actually enjoyed herself. The Dreyse is weirdly fun
to play with. I wouldn’t say it’s the most comfortable gun, but it’s fun. We need to
cover, though, some problems with the design. So we already talked in the animation about
the fact that we were getting some light strikes, so they went ahead and modified the sear to
push that striker just a little bit further back and then release it. Well, that’s not
the only problem. That was resolved, obviously, nice and easy. Another issue that came up with that it really
needed a disconnector. As a matter of fact, I’ve been scratching my head over the diagrams
because I don’t have one without a disconnector. I can’t figure out mechanically how they reset
the trigger on that thing without a positive disconnector in this gun. If you own one that’s
pre-disconnector, and you can explain it to us, great, make a video we’ll link you out.
But, as for me, I imagine it was just a matter of “you had to release the trigger or else
it was just gonna slam back forward again”. Anyway, they added a positive disconnector;
that cleaned things up pretty quickly. Good, +1! We’ve seen that in the animation. Another issue is a little bit harder to explain,
so let’s get ahead and get a closer look. Now, remember: we’re not supposed to be able
to throw this latch if the firing pin is back, okay? I’m sorry, I have big fingers, it ruins
everything. But, we’ve got our firing pin back; we have our latch here. The fear is
that you’ll somehow thumb-stroke this, or it’ll get caught in the holster or fabric,
and you’ll have one in the chamber, if the latch is allowed to open, it’s going to disconnect
the sear from that striker and we’re going to have it discharge. Well, there’s a tab
in there that is meant to line up with the striker. You can see it if you go back to
animation; it’s pretty clear that it sticks up and over. The problem is it seems to be
a wearable part, because in our example here, just for an instance, boom! Now, that is probably one of the biggest explanations
for why this gun would eventually be dropped, because I feel like, with that part, it’s
going to wear out, it’s going to become a problem, and it’s going to happen at some point
that you end up with a truly accidental discharge. That little nastiness aside, we know that
the gun served with Saxony, but who else used it? Well, civilian sales were good: the gun
was produced from 1908 to 1918 with 250000 made. That’s a fairly big number, especially
for a pocket pistol out of Europe. But, as good and popular as it was with the people,
realistically a large number of them went to military and police contracts, with probably
close to half being consumed by the German Army in World War One. These were offered
for sale internally at 34 Marks. Austria-Hungary also used the Dreyse, and
they will be marked with the “W-n” dash date acceptance mark. But, more than the military powers, realistically
the German police just snapped these things up. I mean, they loved them! And they’re gonna
stay in police and some military use into the 1940s. By then they’re starting to be
displaced though; we’ve got other designs coming out from Walther and things like that.
They’re going into storage, and they’d stay in storage realistically until the latter
days of World War Two, when you have things like the Volksturm kicking up, and guns are
sort of being turned out wherever they can be found. And so, a lot of these guys end
up in Germany proper right at the closing of the war, right when Allied troops are rolling
in, and if you haven’t noticed, they’re fairly easy to pocket. And so they became a favourite
souvenir of Americans returning home. And that’s why, realistically, despite never really
being imported to the United States, they’re really common in the United States collector
market to this day. Because they were all just carried over in huge numbers. It’s like the Arisaka of Europe. Anyway, we should probably talk about one
other model, which is the same standard Dreyse, that was sold over to the Pope’s Swiss Guards,
way back in 1912. The reason I bring it up though, even though there were only 30 of
them, is because, frankly their fantastic service life. They weren’t retired until 1990. Before we bring in Mae, I’ll also briefly
mention that there was a 9mm version. Now, this was produced in very small numbers with
an eye for military contracts. It was still a blowback action, and so that requisite spring
was so strong they had to add a cocking lever, which still didn’t help much with actually
operating the gun. We’ll leave it at that though because hopefully we’ll turn one of
these up for more detail later. For now, let’s go ahead and drag Mae in here to talk about
this .32 version. Alright we made some room, rearranged the
furniture, yadda yadda yadda, I put on pants and now we have Mae to give her opinion on
actually shooting the Dreyse pistol. So let’s start where we always start: how did you feel
about the ergonomics, the handling? Thanks. So first impressions of this gun is
that it is incredibly top heavy; it feels like all the way to the up here and none is
down here in the grip. I mean you can even look at it and just tell that all the mass
is up here while none is at the bottom. Now when shooting this gun, the bar slams back
up here into the top of the gun itself right above my grip, which I feel doesn’t really
help the recoil. Don’t get me wrong, on this gun the recoil, I found, was manageable. They
added a low bore axis, the breech block is big, they tried to make it easy to manage.
However I just feel like they could have done one step… gone a little step further with
it, if just maybe they considered redistributing the weight so that when this bar came back,
it didn’t cause as much of a whip in the gun for the recoil itself. Adding to that I would also say that the grip
itself is a little bit short, so it feels like it just doesn’t want to fit all the way
into the palm of my hand. It doesn’t come quite far enough down, I feel, to help me
get that little bit a leverage to help manage the whip itself. So it’s… it kind of feels
like with the low bore axis and the big breach block they went two steps forward and then
one step back in terms of recoil, in terms of weight distribution and the shorter grip.
That’s how I feel. Next I’d probably talk about the magazine
itself. Not a big fan of heel releases. This one in particular was the most difficult one
for me to date. I would say because this little tab in here that you’re supposed to pinch
for the mag release… It’s really short and fairly thin. Kind of feels like you wanna
pinch your thumb with it. The toe of the mag itself… it barely protrudes out from the
gun so it’s hard to get a good grip on it and this mag itself, it’s just… we thought
it was fairly stiff to operate on the range, so when pulling it out it just didn’t want
to give it… it was a real buzzkill in my opinion. Next I’ll talk about was the bar. The bar
itself, like don’t get me wrong, these serrations right here are fairly deep and there are enough
of them that it feels like I’m able to get a good grip on it. The bar is a little stiff,
but, again, the serrations help with that. However I do not like the fact that I have
to come up here towards the muzzle of the gun. This is the danger zone. I don’t want
to go anywhere near it, but yet they’ve… they’ve made me have to go near it to actually
operate it. So it’s… it’s not my favorite, but it was manageable. The last thing I’ll probably talk about is
the safety on this gun. It’s really stiff, which made it incredibly difficult to one-hand
on. However, one-handing off? Not too bad. But, yeah, overall ergonomics of this gun: it’s
a little bit awkward; I feel like they could have done a few things better. Yeah, if you’re at home and you haven’t handled
the Dreyse and you’re looking at it, and you think “God that looks awkward”, you’re right!
It’s awkward. May I? I agree with Mae. It’s top heavy, it feels – especially in my hand –
I mean, good Lord, I can’t… my whole pinky’s done for and that’s okay. There’s pocket pistols
are small, I have to roll the pinky, but those small pocket pistols don’t put all that mass
the top like this gun, so she’s dead on in my opinion on this. The trouble with that is that you think “Okay,
then it must be a terrible shooter!” It feels like it wants to worm out of your hand. I
mean the only benefit is just how deeply set your hand is, that really does help eat up
some of it. However, let’s go ahead and get Mae to explain
to us how she did shooting it, and on this one several of us decided to play with this
gun on the range and you would be surprised. Here. Thanks. So shooting this gun: let’s actually
talk about the trigger first, let’s start there. The trigger on this gun, I thought was…
it wasn’t really clean, it wasn’t muddy, it was… it was middle of the road; it was average.
There was nothing really exceptional about it. However, I can kind of feel in there a
little bit of resistance when I’m pushing against that striker in here. I would love
to try one of the earlier models to see if there is any sort difference. See if the early
ones are little bit cleaner. But… there’s was nothing really exceptional about it. Now the sights on this gun I thought were
very easy to read. I didn’t have any misalignment problems. I thought I shot really well with
these sights. I was able to realign quickly. However, I could see how someone would accidentally
realign with one of the tops of these troughs on the bar, and maybe mis-shoot; I could see
how that would be an option. That being said, I will say that not just me
but everyone else on range with us that day drilled a hole with this gun. Everyone
was accurate with it. It was a pleasant shooter. Like… it was it was magical honestly. I can’t lie… you grab this gun and you think
“eh, let’s see what’s gonna happen”. There’s no confidence in it from the first pick up, at
least not for me or anybody else that was playing with it before we got there. But there’s nobody, not the worst shooter in the
crew, couldn’t just nail the O-ring with this thing. I mean it’s… May I? Yeah. Awkward. Lumpy. You instantly feel like it’s
too short. You instantly feel like it’s too top-heavy. You instantly feel uncomfortable.
And yet, just blam-blam-blam, all under control, all nice and tight, and you still aren’t really
sure why that works. It’s a confluence of things that shouldn’t
and yet do. But I can’t say that there’s any of us don’t kind of love the Dreyse after
shooting it. Maybe it was lucky day, maybe it was good
weather, maybe we were in good spirits or maybe this gun just… I don’t know. It just
functions. So I guess with that praise, with all the
faults and with all the pros, we gotta get you to that classic question: how would you
feel in the trenches of World War One if you were issued the Dreyse? So if were actually handed the Dreyse on the
battlefield, I think I would do okay with it. Honestly like, I feel like on range I
was accurate with it, all the negatives we missed it aside… or listed aside, it shot
well. I shot well with it. Everyone did. Now, granted, at that time, I do know now,
of course, that there are better options available for me and also being .32… it’s not my preferred
gun in war. However, I would take it to battle with me if I were given it because I know
that I would be ok with it, that I will be able to rely on it and, of course it didn’t
show in the video, but the gun didn’t have any malfunctions on range. It was perfect. So there you have it. This might be the worst
gun to get a solid yes out of Mae. Well, I guess, you know, this isn’t the longest episode,
I understand but I hope you guys enjoyed it. There’s plenty of these things out there so
I’m sure more than a few of them… a few of you have encountered them. But, as always,
updates are after the credits. We thank you all for being here and we’ll see you again in
two weeks, plus whatever little updates we managed to get out in the meantime. Thanks everyone! Just a quick update this time. Number one,
for those of you who wanted t-shirts, I’m sorry to say they’re unavailable temporarily. We just weren’t really getting we needed done with
our current provider, so we’re looking for a new one if you make t-shirts and wanna help out,
by all means pop us an email with, you know, your details. Also I’m sure everyone’s excited about the
T-Gewehr still. Our range, as I’ll remind you, was under water for some time. It’s back
in operation. We’re going to try again this week to get some filming done. We are going
to be limited by the weather to some degree, though, so fingers crossed. With only five
rounds I can’t afford to do this wrong, and go back and re-shoot it the next week like
we have with some other guns. So it’s gotta be right and it’s gotta be right the first time. Let’s see… thank all of you, because our
Patreon level is at $1131. That’s twenty bucks up from last time around. That will deflate
a little bit, at the beginning of the month, so it might even start deflating by the time
you guys see the video. Usually some supporters come in every month and sort of re-inflate
it, so it’s just a constant growth thing, against the sort of… cash outs. Also I should probably thank Drake specifically
because he’s been a real big help behind the scenes, when we were trying to coordinate
with The Great War and everything, and he’s been rushing me ammo photos and getting us
anti-tank rifle cartridges into, you know, editable state and things like that. So thank
you Drake, you’re a big help, we really appreciate you. And not that we don’t appreciate everybody
else, but just, that’s… today’s his nod, everybody thank Drake! Otherwise, things are running pretty smoothly.
I’m a little busy but that’s how it goes. I hope you guys are enjoying the animations
every other week. I’m going to try to keep brushing those up and rolling back them back
out. There may be a bit of a slow-down, because
some of them aren’t built the same as others because of time requirements back when we
were working on them at that time. Basically not all of them are looped and I’ll have to
go in and sort of reconstruct what I was doing at the time to get ’em to loop. The other thing is for those you don’t have us
on Facebook. You can also follow us on Imgur. I’ll try to post it there, but
we’ve been doing some little throwback photos if you care about those. It’s just showing
some, you know, some of these firearms in their place in the war. Alright, that’s really it, so thank you all
and we hope to see you in two weeks!

100 thoughts on “Small Arms of WWI Primer 020: German Dreyse 1907 Pistol

  1. Great video. Looked like the best group yet. With a pistol, anyway. So, what are you guys going to shoot the T-Gewehr at? A stack of AR500 plates? A safe? The tax code? I've got my lawn chair and cooler ready to go!

  2. Great video as usual, hope you guys get to some more of the blackpowder/conversion rifles/carbines
    Gras m74 or m80/14Mauser m80/07 (dreaming)Mannlicher 1888 or 88/90Vetterli m70/87 or m70/87/15Or any of the French Kropatscheks

  3. I had a Dreyse 1907 marked with the SN 2948 on the lower frame forward of the safety, I remember it was a fun shooter, though friends would tease me about bringing a staple gun to the range.

  4. just a point on the Dryse; instead of using the magazine toe as a take-down tool there is a better one: keep a fired 45-70 brass around. as a take down tool it works a champ

  5. Do you know why it took so long for large capacity magazines to catch on? You've got the thirteen round high-power in the 1930s, (and various c96s if I want to be all inclusive) and then its really the 1970's to get common 15 or 17 round capacities in Berettas and Glocks. I would have thought designers and consumers would really jump on the quantum leap over six rounds of a revolver when magazine fed pistols first appear. Yet all these WWI pistols seem to be six or seven just like a wheelgun.

  6. Honestly, have you thought about a T-Gewer Calendar for 2016-17? Those photos had me entertained beyond all good reason. Keep up the good work.

    P.S. I can't wait for the trench shotgun episode…. Nothing like incensed Germans (in the early part of the 20th century) to get me excited.

  7. Question, what size was the copper coupler you used for disassembly? I've had some near disasters with punches and screwdrivers taking my Dreyse apart.

  8. Holy Dreyse, Othais! I didn't realize how much bigger you are than Mae until I saw that pistol in your hands. Dang!

    Good work as always!

  9. Interesting video. I guess even 100 years ago, gun manufacturers were ripping off famous names to drive sales.

    I think the practice has gotten out of hand in recent years:
    -Springfield Armory
    -Rock Island Armory
    -Sharps Rifle Company
    -Inland Manufacturing (I recently heard about this company making M1 Carbine repros)
    -I'm sure there's more

  10. Oh what memories, I had one of these pistols 40 years ago I purchased it for $50 it's one of the few firearms ever regret having sold also it looks like it's time for the Mae calendar when you guys get it all together let me know so I can buy a few as those pictures of Mae were tasteful and outstanding

  11. I can add something here, the base plate finger tip protrusion of the magazine is meant to be used to disassemble the forward recoil spring lug. You'll note the interesting step on that baseplate finger? You use that on the bottom of the muzzle where there is a half ovular recess in the shroud of the frame to depress the lug far enough for the internal capture lug to disengage. Once you understand, you'll have no need for your cut copper pipe connector solution, Othias, though that was a very cool solution. The germans always make sure you have all you need within the design of a firearm itself. At least this has been my experience. Note the Kar98's steel circle in the butt for taking down the bolt. I may have to do a video to better illustrate the operation above mentioned. I wish i could just link a picture in the comment section here!

  12. Are you planning on selling a sexy time gallery of Mae and some sexy weapons? If so, I have a feeling it will sell. Not sure if your prints will sell as well though…no offense.

  13. still kick myself for not buying one of these for $200 a few years ago.

    so many .32's ,so little free cash or decent examples left.

  14. When you point out that the upper and lower are separate pieces, I asked myself, Why do we not do this today?You could have a pistol that fired .22LR, .32 ACP, .380ACP, 9mm Mak,  or possibly even larger caliber, all by just changing the 'Upper' and changing the mag a bit. That seems like something people might like today.

  15. Enfield 303 please, you might as well get to the best sooner, Keep up the great channel, by the way Im here from The Great War channel.

  16. excellent as always!!!! why was it the little deyse that could? teutonic pagan magik (wow! thatd be a brilliant death metal band name). i think if i owned one of these id rig up a "takedown glove" and permanently affix the copper coupling to the palm of old work glove (rocking cut off fingers of course). that way all youd have to do is align the lug bushing to the coupling and push without having to try to align and hold the bushing as well. maybe im overthinking it but, what the hell teutonic pagan magik!

    ps nice pics of may with the t gewehr! i sense a poster in the future ? and yes, nice pic of othias with the t gewehr as well. it made me laugh.

  17. Another beautiful .32 that I'd love to collect.  Loved the vid–Mae, you are an expert shooter.  Guys, this is another top-notch production.

  18. Othais; your attention to detail on these video's is fantastic. Mae; nice glamour shots with that beast of a rifle. Cool history on a gun I had no experience with. I feel lucky I was able to buy 3 shirts; I should have bought them all. Good luck on finding a replacement vendor.

  19. Rheinische Metallwaaren und Maschinenfabrik also used the abriviated mane Rheinmetall. Much easier to pronounce.

  20. if i could get that last pic and hang it in my office cubicle, the confusion and awkward glances would be an endless source of amusement. i'd never get another workplace date again, but …………

  21. Since you guys are doing quite a few handguns that chambered the .32 ACP, will you guys also be doing one for the Colt M1903 pocket hammerless?

  22. I love your channel! It took me 3 weeks from discovery to catching up! Now I start waiting for the next ones 😉

    There seems to be a lot of pattents involved, could you explain that a bit? How they were obtained, cost, enforcement, how long they last, country of validity, how it differs from current pattents,… I do not know if it is feasible without turning it into a legalese video though…

    Regards from Canada!

  23. Another great quality video, thanks guys! The history and explanation are great but the diagrams and animation really puts it through the roof!
    A guy is selling one locally for 250, is this a good price? I thought there was a catch but it seems to be all working, bluing is excellent. The only thing is it has aftermarket wood grips.

  24. I noticed it is often mentioned the cost of the gun during the time. is there any way to translate that so we can get really understand how expensive these things were.

  25. I don't schpeak Germaan, but I'd todt Otias mey like to know zat any-zing  vish a 'W' ish pronounzed vish a 'V'. I ope zis helps to betta zin reading out zin Germaan. Zuffysh to shay, I very mush engjoy ze zhow. Aufwiedersen! 😉

  26. Excellent!  Thanks for the in-depth description and background.  I have one and just took to the gunsmith yesterday to have thoroughly cleaned for display.  Amazingly enough my S# is only 100 spots different than yours in the video.  And it's in excellent shape too.

  27. just snagged a late first variant s/n 107073. grips are creaked so I got it for next to nothing. thanks for the great video because of your work I knew instantly what I was looking at.

  28. did you see that target !!. real experiments that show what works and what doesn't. Whooa. Dammit; I wish I could work on a short run production of these. It can be improved, too. what a little hummer.

  29. Mae; look at your own video; never mind what you "felt" about yadda-yadda, the hard data is in the video. the recoil behaviour is beautiful. Surely you don't think it's a mysterious accident that this thing shoots such tight groups ? it's not an accident, it's physics. somebody pretty thoughtful designed this.

  30. Mae, in a floppy hat and stripped dress caressing a T-Gewehr: sexy! Othais, in an orange hoodie slumped over a T-Gewehr in a drunken stupor: YEECCH!

  31. I hate to ask, but any chance we are going to get a 1911 episode soon? it had a hell of a development process behind it, plus that J Browning flare.

  32. i got one of these as a hand me down from my grandfather. Got the papers for it too saying its his personal property. s/n 14168 with 9 X's carved in the side. mine tends to jam as the bullet come up the from magazine and the bullet doesnt make it into the barrel. i have only tried a hollow point tho. would love it see if thats the cause of it. if anyone can confirm that is the reason id love to know.

  33. There is one of these at a LGS I frequent (too often). It's been rubbed down with a Scotchbrite pad, not bad otherwise. It's "different". Thanks for this vid!

  34. I was thinking that you could add a round in the mag to make the grip longer, but this was being sold as what we would call a sub-compact. As a pocket pistol you need it to fit in you… Pocket. In the days when all men wore suits you wouldn't worry about priniting so as long as it fits comfortably in a trouser or coat pocket it fulfils the desired niche.

    As for being a popular polezi sidearm, the shootability and small groups might well be the very reason for its long service life.

  35. A quick question but it's something I've been wondering while watching this series, when did it became standard (or at least so it seems to me) to have the recoil spring under the barrel instead of on top of it?EDIT:for pistols that is

  36. yesterday we saw the film "The Testament of Dr. Mabuse " 1933.

    the dreyse 1907 plays a not unimportant visible and "talk about" role as an assassin-pistol, one of the Gangsters used.

    even in this old film it was already described as "out of style for a long time" by the police-officer after they got the pistol+criminal person.

    (perhaps cause the weak 7,65cal.).

  37. Two-piece hinged on the front, with the trigger group in the bottom and barrel and bolt assembly on the top? Yep, sounds just like the Armalite Rifle series.

  38. A gun for Battlefield 1? I think so! Along with the Jaeger Pistole, FN Model 1900, Colt New Service, Colt Model 1892 and the Colt Single Action Army Artillery Model from 1902, which may've seen limited service in WW1.

  39. I know it is mean, but I always have to chuckle when he tries to speak German. 😂
    Keep up the good work, I love your series! 😊

  40. Great video and very informative. Just recently posted a video on this pistol that my grandfather had brought back from WW2. He picked this up when the P38 he had taken off a German officer was confiscated by his CO.

  41. I have one of this from my grand grand dad, he was an important military man, close to the king Alfonso XIII, and this gun is all I have from him. I'm very proud to keep his, living history of Spanish 20th century army. Thank you for sharing.

  42. Looking at the 3D animation, the question that came to my mind was: Would the safety still work if the gun was inverted?

  43. For a moment I shocked and in dismay. by slip of tongue, I thought by Mae. – 'Me, being 32…'- no, surely not your age, you are making fun, – Of course you meant Caliber of Dreyse Gun!! Great video and grouping. I learned a lot, thanks. Vor Sprung Dunk Tecknik.

  44. Hypothesis: "… But they'd have to find some way of avoiding the patent" is a serviceable capsule summary of the reasons behind a huge proportion of firearms development, particularly between, say, 1850 and… well, let's say now. 🙂

  45. Is this the same gun that's featured as the police issue side arm for the Berlin police on the Netflix series Babylon Berlin?

  46. I still have a small scar on my forehead from a Dreyse barrel bushing. A couple of inches lower and I'd be one-eyed.

  47. There are a few of these on a table in a scene in Fritz Lang's movie M, from 1931. Always wondered what they were! it's generally somewhere after the 26 minute mark, on this version on YouTube, it's at 27:57 There are also some other interesting vintage hand guns and items on the table…

  48. I bet those sweet front cocking serrations let you do some sick press checks, you know, to see who could be the best Trench Operator.

  49. Dad had one that a German prisoner of war created almost identical wooden replacement hand grips for, with HIS initials instead of the "RMF", that I can make out on published images!

  50. I googled this, and the company that bought Dreise is still around. As the Rheinmetall AG. Building among other things, a certain type of 120mm tank gun.

  51. Been watching this channel for a while now. After my father-in-law found out that I'll be starting gunsmithing classes in August, he gave me one of the two that he had to use as a project gun. Was stoked to see that you guys had a video talking about it! Thanks for the info you provide in these videos.

  52. There is currently one of these in my local gun shop which is very cool! Unfortunately, because I am in Canada, its classified as prohibited (due to barrel length), so I can't buy it 🙁

  53. Interesting vid, glad I stumbled across it. I have one of these pistols – s/n 235455. When it's cocked the pin sticks out about 1/8" in the back. I agree, it's fun to shoot.

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