A Nurse with a Gun

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Ugly Gun Sunday

This Sunday we present one of the finest photographs of one of the ugliest pistols ever produced. The FP-45 Liberator is proof that ugly is truly in the eye of the beholder. With just 23 stamped steel parts, the FP-45 was a firearm designed to be mass produced during wartime. FP-45 Liberator, Click to enlargeIt's primary purpose was that of a cheap weapon to be inserted to resistance forces in occupied territories. A one shot assassination weapon, it fired a .45ACP round through a unrifled steel pipe, and was easily concealed to allow the assassin to get close enough to do the bloody deed. If the shooter lived through the killing, he could twist open the breech, and poke the spent shell out of the chamber with a stick. Then reload. Extra rounds could be stored in the grip.

The original delivered cost for the Liberator, with original box and ammunition was $2.40 per pistol. A FP-45 in good condition today will command around $2500-$3000 with the correct climate and collectors in the room. The original box will bump the price up an additional $1500. A comic strip instruction insert was included with the pistol as well as a wooden dowel for reloading. If these are present (original as shown by a hard to fake watermark), it would take $5000-$5500 for the entire package to change hands. But it is still ugly.

The FP-45 is proof that an ugly gun is not necessarily inexpensive, or undesirable. It's just ugly. I want one.

I cannot remember where I stole this beautiful photo from several years back, but if it belongs to to you, thank you for taking and publishing it.

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Blogger Bruce said...

If the shooter lived through the killing, he could twist open the breech, and poke the spent shell out of the chamber with a stick. Then reload.

More likely, I would imagine, the shooter would then take the bigger gun belonging to the dead guy.

Use the little gun to get to the big one.

Reload the sardine can and hand it to your unarmed friend.

1:07 PM  
Anonymous Alex said...

I saw two Liberators on a table at the last gunshow I went to. There was only one dowel and one comic strip between the two of them. The asking price was $3,000 each with either the dowel or the strip. I'd have given $300 for one...

2:22 PM  
Blogger Mulliga said...

I've always thought the Liberators had kind of a brutish, simple beauty. In an age where pistols were still built the old-fashioned way (M1911 and the Luger), something like this must have been pretty crazy.

I wonder how useful these things were, though. If you have to get within spitting distance to hit anybody with it, wouldn't a knife be just as effective?

2:23 PM  
Anonymous Ditto said...

That, is a beautiful piece of engineering.
I want one too.

6:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

a psychological weapon as much as anything.....

12:34 AM  
Anonymous Mark in AZ said...

I got to see one at the Robins AFB museum two weeks ago. Was nice to see one in person.

Perfect example of a "get me a better gun, gun"

10:57 AM  
Anonymous zoom said...

Some of the guys over at the weaponeer board are working on a parts kit to build repros:


8:18 AM  
Blogger UNHchabo said...

When I see the Liberator, I think of the article that Mr. Oleg Volk linked to off of A Human Right:

What Good Can a Handgun Do Against an Army.....?

6:13 PM  

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