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Why has no one remade the liberator?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Mooseman, Feb 11, 2010.

  1. Mooseman

    Mooseman Well-Known Member

    Granted this gun would only be of interest to those in the hobby or maybe military collectors but it seems it could be produced cheaply enough to offset the cost of producing it.

    Would a company be able to reproduce and sell it as originally designed or are there safety regulations that would prevent it?

    Could this gun be sold as a kit with a flat receiver to be completed at a home shop?

    Just some thoughts, what do you folks think?
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2010
  2. tank mechanic

    tank mechanic Well-Known Member

    Take it for what its worth, but Wikipedia had a mention of company producing them recently. Made about a thousand I think. Said they were retailing for about $650.
  3. icecold

    icecold Member

    www.VintageOrdnance.com sells reproductions for $599.

    If it were $100 I'd be interested but not for $599.

    **edit** - tank mechanic beat me to it. The site I linked to is the one mentioned in the Wikipedia article.
  4. tank mechanic

    tank mechanic Well-Known Member

    ice cold beat me to it...
  5. essayons21

    essayons21 Well-Known Member

    $600 for a stamped steel pistol!? :O

    I see that they use real steel, not pot-metal like the original, and they rifle the barrel, but still, that seems rather ridiculous. And they recommend against shooting them.

    The originals could be manufactured faster than they could be fired, definitely not a $600 piece of weaponry.
  6. Mooseman

    Mooseman Well-Known Member

    agreed, thats cool but overpriced.
  7. mordechaianiliewicz

    mordechaianiliewicz Well-Known Member

    That's just absurd. It can't cost more than $50 to make that thing. (and that's stretching it).
  8. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    In todays legal climate, I doubt anyone would take the risk of getting sued for injury.

    Those things are just barely safe to shoot due to a poor design.
    Were it not for the over-size smooth-bore barrel relieving pressure, they most likely would blow up. A modern repro would have to have a rifled barrel.

    And you will bleed after you shoot one.
    Primer set-back re-cocks the striker part way, where it promptly slams back forward under spring pressure & recoil.
    And takes a large chunk of meat out of your hand every shot!

  9. WardenWolf

    WardenWolf member

    The primary reason why nobody has made a true Liberator reproduction is because it would be a very small market and it would be illegal to own without having it registered as an AOW due to the unrifled barrel. Very few people want to go through the paperwork and be on a government registry just for the sake of owning a reproduction of a piece of trash.
  10. Mooseman

    Mooseman Well-Known Member

    could you put a rifled barrel on one or would that increase the pressure too much?
  11. hirundo82

    hirundo82 Well-Known Member

    Is there any reason the rifled bore couldn't be oversized? To avoid being an NFA item the bore has to be rifled, but there's nothing that says the rifling has to be effective.
  12. essayons21

    essayons21 Well-Known Member

    The reproductions are rifled.

    It would be neat to have a reproduction to put in a case as a collectors piece. Shooting one, as rcmodel mentioned, would be painful and ill-advised.

    They were designed for one purpose... to be made in mass quantities on the cheap. A single-use, throwaway weapon intended for point blank attacks on lone Nazi occupiers to steal their Mauser or MP.
  13. funkychinaman

    funkychinaman Well-Known Member

    There is no way I'd spend $600 for a *reproduction* of a pistol that only cost $26 (today's dollars) to be begin with.

    Now if someone made a NON-FIRING replica for say, less than a hundred, maybe. (Making it non-firing would make things so much easier.
  14. Occam's Razor

    Occam's Razor Well-Known Member

    The Vintage Ordnance guns aren't even shootable as shipped. I assume this is to avoid lawsuits

    From their website:

    These are not shootable as shipped. The firing pin hole has to be drilled out.

    Though our reproduction is sold as a firearm and exceeds the mechanical strength of the original through the use of superior materials and vastly tighter chamber and headspace tolerances, WE STRONGLY ADVISE CUSTOMERS NOT TO FIRE THE PISTOL. During production in 1942, several examples were taken from the assembly line to test under repetitive fire. Reports indicated that after 50 rounds of service ball ammunition the testers felt the weapons were no longer safe to fire. They were simply never designed handle a steady diet of powerful .45 ACP. They were made to fire ten rounds. They are what they are.

    The original FP-45 is a clever and efficiently designed weapon but it has never received any accolades for operational safety. Once it is loaded, the only safe way to handle it is with the zinc cocking piece turned fully 90% to the right or left so that the rear corner of the pistol’s grip frame will prevent it from rotating into firing position. If the cocking piece is re-aligned and the guide pin inserted through the hole in the cover slide as illustrated in the original instructions, THE PISTOL IS COCKED AND READY TO FIRE. IF DROPPED IN THIS STATE, IT COULD EASILY DISCHARGE CAUSING INJURY OR DEATH. Some worn original guns will have no mechanical means to hold the zinc cocking piece securely in the safe 90 degree position because the bottom of the firing pin boss is worn off from repetitive careless scrapping across the steel frame. There is no safe way to handle these pistols. A loaded pistol should never be un-cocked by lowering the zinc cocking piece when it is aligned in firing position. To do so would place the firing pin, under spring pressure, directly on top of the primer of the chambered cartridge. IF THE PISTOL WAS JARRED OR DROPPED IT IS HIGHLY LIKELY TO DISCHARGE.

    In light of the above mentioned facts relating to the relative safety of the FP-45 in general, we will not drill the firing pin hole completely through the cover slide. Therefore, our reproduction as shipped is technically incapable of firing and significantly safer than the original pistol. WE STRONGLY ADVISE OUR CUSTOMERS NOT TO TAKE THEIR DREMEL TOOL AND A 1/16” BIT AND DRILL THE FIRING PIN HOLE THE REST OF WAY THROUGH BECAUSE THIS WILL RENDER THE PISTOL FULLY OPERATIONAL. VINTAGE ORDNANCE IS NOT LIABLE FOR INJURY OR DEATH RESULTING FROM PURCHASERS MODIFYING OUR PRODUCT IN THIS UNAPPROVED MANNER.
  15. rondog

    rondog Well-Known Member

    I'd love to have a real one!
  16. Mooseman

    Mooseman Well-Known Member

    That made me chuckle

    I strongly advise the neighborhood hooligans not to push a potato into someone's exhaust pipe because this will render the car fully nonoperational.
  17. WardenWolf

    WardenWolf member

    Bwahahaha! They made it non-operational to cover their own butts, but told customers EXACTLY how to make it operational. I love that company, just for that.
  18. Carl N. Brown

    Carl N. Brown Well-Known Member

    My guess as to why the reproductions were priced at $600 is this: Sheet metal stamping equipment is not cheap, nor is setting up the stamping dies. The first gun would easily cost thousands of dollars just in setting up the equipment, even if the individual guns made after that cost less than $10 each, the cost of set-up would have to averaged out over the production run. Plus there are hidden costs mandated by government taxes and regulations.

    You're buying a collectors item, not a utilitarian firearm.
  19. IIRC, the rifled barrel would cause a great increase in recoil over the smoothbore. A point of consideration for shooting the repro. Shell out the $1200-$1700 and buy a piece of history!:D
  20. Joe Demko

    Joe Demko Well-Known Member

    A non-firing replica or one that fires those odd caliber (8mm?) theatrical blanks for under $100 would have more interest to me. It'd be a cheap way to get into WWII re-enacting. Street clothes + Liberator reproduction = I'm a partisan!

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