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Invented by someone French.
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A mechanical pencil in blued steel with a mahogany grip (checkered, 30 lines
per inch, skipline); on the end is a recoil-absorbing eraser.
Sliding the grip through its cycle (admittedly a longer stroke than most pencils
require) produces the distinctive sound of a Remington 870 pump action shotgun
(the action, not the shot) (yes, it's quieter than the real thing, but it works well
held up to a microphone or cell phone).
A 1911 model might also be possible.
1880. I bet it's a muzzle loader...
[2 fries shy of a happy meal, Jun 23 2012]
Gas powered microrifle. [rcarty, Jun 24 2012, last modified Jun 25 2012]
||I have no idea what a Remington 870 sound is (I
thought they just made electric razors), but I will
buy one of these if only for the grip.
||We do; and this is a charming idea.
||Is this an idea for a bic lighter / bic pencil zip gun? How fast and how far can a standard mechanical pencil lead be fired from chambered butane?
||Use lighter for buttstock, use loading end of mechanical pencil for chamber. Use mechnical action of penicl to pump lead. Gas detonates in same chamber as the pencil lead is stored, but is muzzle fired. A muzzle from a depleted bic pen tube will carry the round the rest of the way, once being pumped all the way out. Keep pumping mechanism compressed to fire.
||Q's got nuthin on you [rcarty].
||You might like this one [lurch].
||I would just like to have a blued steel pencil.
||If that fails the spring loaded flint in the bic lighter shoots pretty far on its own.
||// I have no idea what a Remington 870 sound is //
||If you've ever watched a movie in which a character uses
any brand or model of pump-action shotgun, you know
what a Rem 870 sounds like. It has the classic 'clackety-
clack' pump sound, as opposed to the smooth triple-click
of the superb Binelli Nova or the excessively harsh
racheting of the monstrous and utterly useless Franchi
12 (which is the pump shotgun you most often _see_ in
movies, because it looks ridiculously bad-ass).
||Foley artists and firearms enthusiasts alike love the sound
of the venerable 870. Actually, we love everything about
it. When my Mom asked me to buy her
a shotgun for home defense, I bought her an 870/Tac-20
and made a slight modification
that tightened up the action, making it extra-clackety as a
bonus. The sound of it alone should be enough to make all
but the most
hardened home intruders immediately void their bowels.
||<An aside to [8th of 7], [21 Quest], [MikeD], [2fries],
[Flying Toaster], and any other gun nuts who want to
correct me: yes, I know the SPAS-12 is technically a dual-
action, but it's so bloody complicated that nobody can
figure out how to put into semi-auto, so in reality it's a
pump-action, and not a very good one. So put your hands
down, the teacher is _not_ going to call on you.>
||//a bic lighter / bic pencil zip gun? //
||In 1942, the British developed an apparently
innocuous Zippo-style cigarette lighter which was
intended to help PoWs. The lighters looked
perfectly normal, but contained about an ounce
of RDX explosive. They were included in Red
||The lighters had a normal-looking wick and were
lit in the usual way. The wick could be allowed to
burn harmlessly for about ten seconds at a time
(in case guards were suspicious). After that, the
heat would ignite a fuse (concealed inside the
wick) and, about five seconds later, the explosive
would be detonated.
||About 2000 of these lighters were produced, and
they were all sent out at around the same time
(since once they had been used, the Germans
would no doubt be alerted to their existence in
||The only oversight was that nobody had thought
to notify the PoWs that these "lighters" were
being sent. Apparently most of the casualties
were pipe smokers. After the war, there was
actually a "Zippo Club" of men who had lost
variable numbers of fingers and facial
accoutrements to these devices.
||, it may surprise you to learn that I've _never_ posted
an idea about firearms, though I've dabbled in light
||[Max] - on the offchance that you're not pulling our collective legs, did these little bundles of joy have a common name by which one could search, and then source further reading?
||Being an ounce payload, I surmise they were intended to be used for 1) distraction or 2) for demolition of fuel tanks, munitions, etc, or maybe 3) very light demolition, possibly cutting through a steel bar, etc, although 1 ounce probably wouldn't do the latter. I doubt that they could be expected to be effective antipersonnel or assassination devices.
||It does raise the idea of the utility of something similar, but with an inbuilt shaped charge, such that it could be employed in cutting or penetration. If it were plastique not straight RDX they could be dissasembled, the paylload combined, the fuses appended and a useful device could be concocted.
||The lighter bombs were real; the OSS and its Allied
counterparts came up with a number of surprises to slip
into Red Cross packages over the course of the war, most
simply intended to cause general havoc in and around the
POW camps, drawing enemy resources away from the
front. The lighters were a spectacular failure both for the
reason [Max] mentioned and because many of them were
defective, but other devices smuggled in were more
effective, such as cigarette flashbombs and sealed cans of
powdered milk that also contained a pair of miniature wire
||//did these little bundles of joy have a common
name// The project was given the code name
"Popeye", but I don't know if the lighters
themselves had a special name. Most often they
were referred to simply as Zippos - this was OK,
because British servicemen didn't usually have
genuine (American) Zippo lighters, so the meaning
||As for their intended use, this was never
stipulated - it was just thought to be a Jolly Good
Idea to give PoWs handy explosive devices. It's
not known how many were used to good effect,
but it is known that the prisoners who built the
Colditz glider planned to use six of them - two to
distract the guards and draw them over to the far
side of the camp, and then four more to break
away the supports which held the wooden fascia
that concealed the glider, allowing it to be
||It is recorded, however, that four British aircrew
were compassionately repatriated from various
German PoW camps following accidents with the
"Zippos", so the project was not a complete
failure. Also, two German guards were maimed
after confiscating and attempting to use the
lighters. The only known Zippo casualty on British
soil occurred when the Red Cross (who had to be
informed of the plan) asked for a demonstration
to prove that the lighters would not detonate
||Incidentally, regarding the //sealed cans of
powdered milk that also contained a pair of
miniature wire cutters//, these were also not a
complete success (although, as the [Alterother]
points out, they were quite effective).
||The wire-cutters had to be sealed into the tins at
the factory, since it was difficult to replicate the
seal without the canning machinery. For secrecy
(since careless talk costs lives), the "dodgers and
wheezers" erected a
sort of tent over part of the production line and,
as the tins went past, dropped a pair of wire-
cutters into each one, the tins having already
been filled with powdered milk. The wire cutters
were taped to cardboard to stop them rattling
against the sides of the tin. A batch of five
hundred tins were thus filled on the first day.
||Unfortunately, the factory produced about 30,000
tins of powdered milk per day. Moreover, the
same powdered milk was sent not only to PoWs
via Red Cross parcels, but also to the Great British
Public, where it was a mainstay of wartime
||By the end of the day, it became apparent that
nobody had thought to track these "special" tins,
all of which had gone through the sealing and
labelling process and now sat scattered amongst
several hundred cases of powdered milk in the
factory's store room.
||It was decided that it was not possible to find the
five hundred lucky winners without alerting many
of the factory's staff to their contents, which
would have risked the story leaking out.
Accordingly, over the next few weeks, many
housewives up and down the land were surprised
to find a pair of wire cutters, neatly taped to a
blank piece of stiff card, inside their tins of
||Subsequent batches were properly tracked and
earmarked for Red Cross parcels, and a great many
of them found their way to PoWs before the
Germans got wise.
||I didn't know that part of the story. Fun!
||It would have been easier to weigh the tins and put
aside the heavy ones.