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Why pistol grips

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by MrTuffPaws, Aug 22, 2005.

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  1. MrTuffPaws

    MrTuffPaws Member

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    Looking at the evolution of military weapons, all of the modern designs of the "Assult Weapon" that I know of have pistol grips. Is there a reason for it? Is say an M14 less stable that an AR-10?
     
  2. nextjoe

    nextjoe Member

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    Not really a direct answer to your question, but I actually find conventionally-stocked guns to be MORE stable than pistol-gripped guns.

    I think the reason is because the gun's center of gravity is usually right between your hands with a regular stock, rather than being above your hands.
     
  3. Harry Paget Flashman

    Harry Paget Flashman Member

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    Might make them point better when fired from the hip or off-handed. Could also grip it one handed and be ready to bring it into action quickly. The low recoil of AR's and AK's would permit this.
     
  4. Eightball

    Eightball Member

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    Mayhaps it's a nod to the fact that it would be easier to train the troops using the weapon? Most everyone in the US has seen firearms in movies, and generally understands how to use a pistol grip (firearm safety, on the other hand...... :uhoh: ). Compare the amount of time it takes to train a spotter with his M24 (designation?) in a sniper squad, and the amount of time it takes to train a regular "rank-and-file" infantryman (don't get me wrong, I definitely respect both equally, I'm just making a point). That, and an M16 without a pistol grip would......be kinda uncomfortable, IMHO.
     
  5. Baba Louie

    Baba Louie Member

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    From a design point of view, the M16/AR15 buffer tube extension would make for a weird pistol grip regular stock design doncha think?

    As for the AK47, Saiga has several semi-auto models sans pistol grip... but firing full auto must have felt better to M. Kalashniakov (or had somewhat better control) with the pistol grip
    http://www.ak-47.us/Saiga_SAR-1.php

    But other than that, I would not have a clue
     
  6. Kaylee

    Kaylee Moderator

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    putting the grip below the action allows the firearm's bore axis to be dramatically lowered -- at shoulder level rather than eye level basically.

    Hence, in rapid firing the recoil impulse isn't quite so "jumpy."
     
  7. fistful

    fistful member

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    First off, most modern long-arms have pistol grips, but not necessarily the "portruding pistol grip" of the assault rifle. If I understand correctly, it became popular because assault rifles were designed for full-auto fire, and the pistol grip is thought to make the gun easier to control. I learned to shoot with the M16, and I consider the portruding pistol grip to be easier to use, all-around. Even so, I hate 'em, cause they so ugly.
     
  8. MachIVshooter

    MachIVshooter Member

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    As simply as it can be stated, a slightly angled pistol grip is the most natural position for your hand. Just hold your hands out straight in front of you and you'll understand why.
     
  9. MrTuffPaws

    MrTuffPaws Member

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    If grip angle was it, then spears would have handles.
     
  10. Husker1911

    Husker1911 Member

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    I believe, among many other reasons, the main reason is that the pistol-gripped firearm is much more easily managed and fired one handed, or one armed. Try using a sporting, conventional stocked shotgun with one hand (arm). I've an aftermarket pistol-grip stocked Beretta 1201 semi-auto riot shotgun. I feel damm well armed with that firearm, much better armed than with the original, factory stock, which did not have a pistol grip. The same logic goes for fighting firearms in general. Should one have a bum wing, one can still carry on taking the fight to the enemy with a pistol-gripped rifle or shotgun. My humble opinion!
     
  11. MacPelto

    MacPelto Member

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    It looks meaner. :p


    Mac
     
  12. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Member

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    Ergonomics.

    Look at target rifles. Although they rarely have pistol grips, they all have a stock arrangement that puts the hand in basically the same position a pistol grip would.
     
  13. DT Guy

    DT Guy Member

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    "Ergonomics"...you mean they're cheaper? :D


    Perhaps it's because the synthetic materials we use now for stocks allows us to do it? Perhaps because it allows for easier conversion to folding stocks?

    I'm going with 'looks tougher', myself. 'Cause it does.


    Larry
     
  14. VARifleman

    VARifleman Member

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    Yes they do, a lot of them. Just about every one with an aluminum stock does.
     
  15. zahc

    zahc Member

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    Have you ever held one?

    To me the superior ergonomics of a pistol grip on rifles is very obvious. I'd prefer a full pistol grip on the majority of my long guns, sans non-turkey shotguns.

    It might have something to do with my semi-bad wrists.
     
  16. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Member

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    Well, that's certainly not why target rifles are made the way they are. If you look at the way the hand and wrist are placed on a target rifle when in the firing position, you'll see it's identical to how they would be placed when firing a pistol-gripped gun.
     
  17. perception

    perception Member

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    --Well, that probably would make them easier to handle, but they wouldn't fly very well.
     
  18. Crosshair

    Crosshair Member

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    I own a 7.62x39 20" Saiga. It is not hard to shoot. I have modified it to take slightly modified (Paper clip and 5 min mag mod) AK-47 magazines. Can't wait to add the POSP scope to it.
     
  19. iapetus

    iapetus Member

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    I thought it was so you could accurately spray-fire from the hip :D
     
  20. Monkeyleg

    Monkeyleg Member

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    iapetus has it. It's so homicidal maniacs who buy their guns illegally at gun shows (where, if they're rich enough, they can even buy shoulder-fired missiles) can mow down every last citizen in the country without suffering wrist pain.
     
  21. MudPuppy

    MudPuppy Member

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    What are some of the earliest examples of true/modern pistol gripped rifles or carbines (or smgs)? That may shed some light. Maybe?
     
  22. GunnySkox

    GunnySkox Member

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    The earliest ones I can think of (which isn't a particularly good source) are.. lessee... The STG-44, the MP40 (was the 38 the same?) the M1928/M1A1, the "Paratrooper" M1 Carbine.

    I think it's a matter of ergonomics. Hold your thumb out so you're doing the "thumbs up" thing. Turn your hand so you're holding your thumb parallell to your forearm and hold it there for a couple of minutes. That's about how you arrange your hand and forearm when you're holding a "Traditional" stock, right? Now, rotate your hand so your thumb is perpindicular to your forearm, the way you'd hold a vertical or pistol grip and do that for a minute or two. I think the latter is supremely more comfortable.

    Of course, those of you with the.. ahem, resources could just grab a traditional stocked rifle and a pistol gripped rifle and hold them both for comparison.

    That said, I might be an idiot, so don't take my word for anything.

    ~Slam_Fire
     
  23. IronLance

    IronLance Member

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    Ergonomics. The "pistol" grip angle is more comfortable to shoot with in all positions because it places the hand in a more natural position.

    You might want to think about what you mean by modern assault weapons. The Chauchat, introduced in 1905, may or may not have been the first production military arm to have a "pistol" grip under the action, as opposed to behind it as in the Colt in 1895 or Browning design introduced just after WW1. The Lewis Gun was invented in 1911.

    The idea of the "pistol" grip on long arms is not a new one. However, if you'll note, those are all military weapons. Weapons built with function and utility in mind. If you look back over a lot of the posts in this thread, you'll note that the word ugly pops up. Asthetics played an important part in how weapon stocks were designed, especially for civilian consumers. Yes, you had warpage and the wrist angle was something you had to get used to, but damn, it looked great!
     
  24. Correia

    Correia Moderator Emeritus

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    The first pistol grips were to help control recoil during rapid fire. A pistol grip allows a stock that is in a straighter line to the shoulder, causing less muzzle rise.

    This isn't conjecture, read the Black Rifle by Edward Ezell. It was a design parameter. Designers started to figure it out as there was more experimentation with automatic weapons.
     
  25. Monkeyleg

    Monkeyleg Member

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    Correia (and others): doesn't the point that pistol-grip stocks validate the anti's claims that such grips faciliate "rapid-fire bullet hoses?"

    Of course we all know the difference between full-auto and semi-auto and that the anti's have been blurring that distinction.

    But how do we say that a pistol-grip stock is no different in function than a straight stock, but then explain that the PG stocks' origins were to make full-auto fire more controllable?

    Give the anti's an inch, and they'll take 25,000 miles to lie or distort the truth.
     
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