January 24, 2004, 08:00 AM
One of my most beloved and used firearms reference books is Edward Clinton Ezell's 1983 12th edition (rvsd) of the Small Arms of the World. I remember what a big deal it was for my mom to buy a 15 year old kid a $50 book twenty years ago! That book has all but fallen apart over the years of constant page-flipping, which brings me to my question. Is there a more recent and updated editon of this book that I have somehow overlooked? If not, is there any other single reference source (BOOK!) out there that contains as much data and info on military small arms as this book did? These days the web has everything at the click of a button, but to me it's just not quite as satisfying as flipping through the pages of some massive gun book looking for something.
January 24, 2004, 10:49 AM
I'm holding Craig Philip's "The World's Greatest Small Arms", ISBN 1-5661-9205-6. Almost certainly not a direct replacement, but readily available at B&N, etc.
January 24, 2004, 01:26 PM
One of the great Classics was "International Armament" by Johnson & Lockhoven, with the aid of InterArms. This was a two volume set.
This book covered all military arms, including pistols, rifles, SMG's, and light and heavy machine guns, from around the mid 1800's to the early days of the M16.
This has a complete history, all markings, how to field strip, and where and who produced each arm.
This was published back in the 1960's, and is a sought-after collector's item.
Fortunately, it's been re-printed as a one volume book.
Other than "Small Arms of the World", this is the best book on military arms I've seen.
If you can find them, the W.H.B. Smith books, "Rifles and Shotguns", and "Pistols and Revolvers" are THE classic books, covering ALL firearms, military and commercial up to about the 1950's.
Smith is the man who actually first wrote "Small Arms of the World". Etzell took over and updated it after Smith's death.
If you're looking on info on how to strip or ID an obscure hand gun, rifle, or shotgun, these are worth their weight in gold.
January 24, 2004, 05:15 PM
The 12th is it and we have a member here at THR who helped Ezell write it. Unfortunately, W. H. B. Smith's family has not authorized anyone to update it and it can sure use updating today.