The great thing about being a know-it-all on the intertubes is that you can’t be — regardless of what you think you know, somebody out there knows more. Here are two examples where posts of ours brought out very relevant information in the comments.
- We posted on April 16th about an M-16 Maintenance Report from Vietnam troop surveys, that we obtained from a private, subscription-only website, Small Arms of the World. Daniel E. Watters wrote in to tell us where we could find that report online for free on a government server — along with most of the rest of an enormous, 12-volume report on the history of the M16 rifle to 1968. You can wait to see the insights we extract from all of that, or you can go here and get the reports for yourself, courtesy of Mr Watters and the United States taxpayers. For an overview of M16 development with lots of good links, you can’t really beat his page at The Gun Zone.
And on the 11tth, we posted about our puzzlement with the lack of good gun-design books. There are dozens of aeronautical design books, a solid handful of rocket design books, a massive literature of books on bridge design, naval architecture, you name it, even excellent works on parachute design. But bupkus on designing firearms (which makes us even more suspicious that some designers are doing it entirely by eyeball). Ah, but the gang at Forgotten Weapons shares a vintage Rock Island Arsenal set of design notes, by John G.Rocha, which is the nearest thing we’ve seen to a weaponry version or Raymer or Roskam’s aero engineering conceptual-design books. The document is labeled “NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION: For use at Rock Island Arsenal only,” but is now released into the public domain.