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GUNS Magazine July 2010 - Page 48

Clones, Copies & Reproductions. The Uberti/Cimarron Model 1876 lever gun is a replica Duke once predicted would never happen. That’s not the only time he has been wrong about such things. f any of you gun guys or gals are 60-years old or I younger, then you have grown up in the firearms era I call “clones, copies and reproductions.” Mike “duke” Venturino Photos: yvonne Venturino That alone should say something about the American gun industry—namely many of us want the firearms available 50 years—and more—ago. First, let’s look more closely at those terms “clones, copies and reproductions.” By my standards, a firearm clone is a precise copy of one produced before—meaning all parts will interchange right down to the screws. That is probably the rarest of the three types. For examples pro and con, let’s look towards Colt. Their current Single Action Army is not a clone of the original SAAs of the late 1800s. Why? The barrel’s threads are different in current ones as opposed to those made before 1974. The same is true with the hand revolving the cylinder and its mating ratchet at the rear of the cylinder. Otherwise, the parts do interchange. Conversely, those Colt 1873-1973 Peacemaker Centennials were indeed clones because all parts could be used in original Colt SAAs. Again, by my standards, copies are just that. They resemble the originals but are made differently, parts don’t interchange, and they may not even function in the same manner as the originals. In my book, the word “replica” could be interchanged with “copy” in regards to firearms. I would Duke considers the Colt Model 1911A1 (left) made early in this century as a perfect clone of the original ones (right) made during WWII. use Ruger Vaqueros as examples here. They are intended to look like a Colt SAA but, other than resembling them, they are totally different revolvers. A good rifle example would be the current Marlin Model 1895s. They are no where close to original Marlin Model 1895s except both rifles were lever actuated big bores. The new Marlin Model 1895s are actually remodeled Model 336s. As for reproductions, I say such guns are close to the originals but not exact. They function in the same manner, are mostly reproduced in the same calibers and their parts may even interchange to a degree with the originals. A good example here would be the new classics coming from Smith & Wesson. In the last few years S&W has redone many of their WWW.GUNSMAGAZINE.COM • JULY 2010 48

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