Gun in Baby's hands ...

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Re: Gun in Baby's hands ...

Postby Madmaxing » Wed Oct 10, 2007 2:43 am

I was too busy yesterday to get back here. I'll try today to post links to the screencaps I made from the DVD to identify the gun. This is something I am used to doing in order to replicate Star Wars props.

On this particular gun the front sight is significant because it has such a long ramp that differentiates it from a lot of other guns. Then there is the wood grips. There are many shaped like them but are not exact to the Model 53, though the Model 53 did share grips with a couple other guns so that alone is not a determining factor. The length of the barrel along with the front sight also helps to identify it, along with the length of the cylinder pin.

I'll be back when I have all my resources.

Steve
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Re: Gun in Baby's hands ...

Postby Madmaxing » Fri Oct 12, 2007 6:52 pm

Here's one of the screencaps. It's about the only time you see the barrel end of the gun.

Here's another pic of a model 53. Evidently it was available in different barrel lengths as you have to search around for the longer one like Sprog has.

Another reason the guns could have been bought cheap for the movie is because at the time the movie was being filmed production of the guns had already ceased because of it's own reputation. Very few people that were enthusiasts wanted to keep them.

Steve

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Re: Gun in Baby's hands ...

Postby Foxtrot X-Ray » Fri Oct 12, 2007 8:24 pm

The (prop) gun could have been Borrowed for the movie too.

Hmm.. The rather unusual ammunition for that model might be why they chose to not use it onscreen. No Blanks available?

Just a thought.
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Re: Gun in Baby's hands ...

Postby the armourer » Sat Oct 13, 2007 1:05 pm

The problem with the Model 53 was not the .22rimfire chamber inserts, but trying to use a tapered round in a revolver. Upon firing the case would setback against the breechface and the expansion from the chamber pressures would lock the case in that position. In a normal straight-sided case this wouldn't be a problem because the case would be free to slide back into it's pre-ignition position. But with the tapered case, it remains in it's setback position and causes much friction when the shooter tries to cock the weapon again. Smith & Wesson discovered this and suggested that the chambers and the cartridges needed to be absolutely clean with no oil on the surfaces whatsoever. This worked pretty well but a lot of shooters never got the word and by that time the gun had a bad reputation. My experience with the .22 Jet Mag is limited to firing just 24 rounds, but if the ammo was clean and the chambers swabbed out with alcohol after each firing the gun functioned just fine. As for blank ammo, the chambering is a bit exotic as movie firearms go. Most film work revolvers are adapted to use a commonly loaded blank round. It wouldn't be too difficult to form the brass for a blank .22 Jet round but it would be costly. I'd charge at minimum $1 per round. This compares to the .25-.30 cents per round for my .38 Special blanks.
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Re: Gun in Baby's hands ...

Postby gunslinger2006 » Sat Oct 13, 2007 4:04 pm

I don't recall that they ever fired the gun in the movie, so blank availability might not have been an issue. I mainly think that it was not a 53 based on the the gun being comparatively rare. I'm not saying it absolutely wasn't a 53, just that it was not a likely choice. I personally believe that it was a S&W model 28. The 28 was their large framed .357, identical to the mod. 27 but not as nicely finished. Quite a few police agencies here in the US used them until the .38/.357 revolver began to be displaced by the 9mm semi-auto in the early 80s. I don't know if this was also true in Australia. It makes sense to me that they would have used a fairly common and available gun for the movie. Of course all of this is just supposition on my part. I've looked at the parts of the film where you see the revolver several times and I just can't tell for sure.
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Re: Gun in Baby's hands ...

Postby Madmaxing » Tue Oct 16, 2007 8:28 am

gunslinger2006, I was onto that hunch as well but the tops of the grips on the 28 frame do not match up with the ones in the movie. Again I will have to wait until I get home, and hopefully remember, to post screencaps of the pistol grips. In my research I have found that it is the grips on the 53 that match the movie gun grips both in the shape at the tops and also the knurling with the diamond shape in the middle of the grip on the left side of the gun.

I thought that it was odd that while Max was lying in the road with his shotgun out of reach that he didn't just pull out his trusty pistol that was slung over his shoulder to shoot Bubba and the Toecutter. BTW, Bubba knows what he is doing. ;)

I don't know 100% positive that I am right on the gun, and I always pay attention to thoughts and findings that other people have, but so far based on everything that I have found I still believe it is a model 53. As for the thought that they would have used a 38 Special or 357 because they were police officers, refer to the on/off blower that engine enthusiasts would know would not work, but it WAS cool!

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Re: Gun in Baby's hands ...

Postby Foxtrot X-Ray » Tue Oct 16, 2007 8:50 am

.38 Specials & .357 magnums are pretty cool.
(My first choice handgun can do both)

Basically, the whole of what I'm saying is that the gun that MAX carried doesn't necessarily have to be the same as the gun that Mel carried.

Same as with the car..

We know that the real car had a fake blower and was a regular 351 Cleveland, but the car it represented was a D.O.H.C. Phase IV, etcetera, etcetera..
(We also know that the Phase IV was NOT a D.O.H.C.)

The 58 is certainly consistant in appearance to the movie prop.
The gun may have been something the prop guy had available & chose it because it Looked intimidating.
Just because the 58 is a rare model doesn't mean it's impossible that the prop gun could be one.

I always did wonder why max never used his sidearm. (the SxS 12Ga Pistol wouldn't be MY first choice.. for anything)
The rarity of the model would limit the availability of blanks for it.. and the low budget of a movie that paid some of their labor in Flats of Beer would most certainly have made it prohibitively expensive to have custom blanks made.
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Re: Gun in Baby's hands ...

Postby gunslinger2006 » Thu Oct 18, 2007 12:08 am

Yall are right, it could easily be the model 53. I don't have any way of making good screen captures so I can look closely at his gun. I too always wondered why he never used it. It may well have been the lack of suitable blanks. I'm sure that Max would have used a gun of suitable caliber for police work. I doubt that in making this movie they thought that some 20 odd years after the fact people would be debating the minutia. :D
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