Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

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Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby dirtybenny » Tue Dec 25, 2018 12:01 am

I believe there are a couple of firearms enthusiasts such as myself among the membership here. I thought creating this thread would give us the chance to discuss the finer points of Bond’s arsenal as well as give those not as well versed guns a place to ask any firearm related questions.

My inaugural topic will be:

The PPK, how does it stand up in the modern era?

First some background on how Bond came to carry the pistol he has become most associated with. Fleming, whom I doubt was much of a firearms aficionado, initially had Bond carrying the miniscule Beretta 418 in .25 caliber, the absolute definition of pop gun. You see caliber is measured in fractions of an inch so a .25 caliber bullet is ¼ of an inch in diameter, by contrast in Europe using the metric system a 9mm bullet is obviously 9mm in diameter. To confuse matters, the unit of measure gets swapped back and forth, just remember the number is the bullet’s diameter.

Back on track, as Maj. Boothroyd said of the Beretta in Dr. No: “Nice and light, in a lady’s handbag, no stopping power.” Rather ironically he replaces it with the .32 Walther stating it “Has a delivery like a brick through a plate glass window.” I would contend this was not much of an improvement, but more on that in another topic.

Fleming was contacted by one Geoffrey Boothroyd (yes, Q’s namesake) an actual firearms expert who chastised Ian over his choice of weaponry for his literary creation. Boothroyd suggested a small arsenal to Fleming, proposing Bond carry two guns, the infamous PPK and a revolver chambered in .38 special which was the predominant police bullet at the time. The PPK would be for “deep cover” and “close in work” i.e. short range. The revolver was meant to be the “hammer” the hard hitting piece to carry the bulk of the work. Fleming however was adamant Bond should carry a semi-automatic as his primary side arm because he felt they were sleek and modern. Fleming did issue Bond Boothroyd’s preferred firearm choices in the novel Dr. No, however Bond gave the revolver to Quarrel who had it in his possession when he met his untimely demise, thus ending Bond’s foray in to revolver ownership. I intend to cover more on this exchange between Fleming and Boothroyd in future topics.

Ok, after all that rambling we’re back to the question asked at the beginning of the essay: how does the PPK stack up today?

I would like to take a moment and differentiate between calibers, Bond’s traditional .32 cal and the slightly more powerful .380 cal or as it’s called in zee fatherland 9mm kurtz (or short in English). Discussion concerning the two calibers as well as the .25 will be saved for another time, let’s just concede for the moment the .380 is the stronger round and a PPK chambered in that caliber is the better and more competent gun.

I can speak from experience as I’ve carried a PPK for some time; it is a very comfortable gun to conceal, easy shooting for its size and has a sense of style about it, which I suppose is important for film. If you have large hands it has been known to “bite” which is to say the slide or the top portion of the gun can cut the back of your hand as it slides back and forth as it’s fired. I wouldn’t choose it while storming a castle but for how Bond was envisioned in the novels and early films it certainly fits the bill.

You see Bond wasn’t intended as the well-dressed commando he has become over the last quarter century, he’s an agent who generally uses his gun as a last resort. Since Brosnan however, Bond has become that dapper commando I mention a moment ago, making the PPK obsolete. I always get a bit of a chuckle watching the opening of Goldeneye as Bond infiltrates the Soviet chemical base wielding his pea shooter, especially when held next to Trevelyan’s full sized pistol. The PPK is great to have “just in case” but if I knew there were a high probability of gun play ahead I’d definitely choose a bigger gun!

So what do you think, is this tread a good idea? How do you feel about the PPK? What firearm questions do you have? What topics would you like to discuss?
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Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Omega » Tue Dec 25, 2018 2:31 pm

Ppk was weak sauce in 1953 today it’s just embarrassing. Bond should probably carry the FN. it’s cool and was cutting edge.
the whole reason the revolver was added to Fleming’s bond is he got a letter from a fan/gun expert pointing out the short comings of the guns Fleming was using which as a chocolate sailor riding a desk the whole war it makes sense he’d go for the cool looking firearm over proven in the field. I’m sure he and his office buddies had tiny handguns concealed in their formal uniform and were like “ look old man I’m packing heat!”

Eon tried updating the gun in tomorrow never dies with the Walther rip off of the glock.

Ppk is cool looking and in a pinch and most importantly in the hands of a expert marksman it’ll do.
Personally I’d say .40 cal as a minimum the 9mm just pisses people off instead of keeping them down. .45 is a beast and always has been, just for me it’s a tough round to shoot all day.




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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby dirtybenny » Wed Dec 26, 2018 4:45 pm

Good point O, concerning Fleming's firearms perception. It's not hard to imagine Fleming walking about in wartime London with his pop gun tucked in his pocket "playing at Red Indians" as he called it in Casino Royale, giddy with the added exoticism of having a pistol in post gun prohibition England.

As I said, that expert who contacted Fleming was Geoffrey Boothroyd, I question his recommendation of the .32 but the .380 has its place especially when coupled with modern defense ammo. That being said I've move to a snub nosed .357 which couples the small size of the PPK with actual stopping power.

I also own a P99 as seen in TND, a decent gun but it's big.

To your point .40 and .45 are fine rounds but as the bullet size goes up so too must the package that holds it, meaning those guns are large and hard to conceal. If I were expecting gun play such as infiltrating an enemy base such a in GE I'd take the bigger gun, but if I'm wearing a tux/business suit where something may or may not go wrong and needed deep concealment the PPK fits the bill.
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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Omega » Thu Dec 27, 2018 4:00 am

Well going by the standard of concealment with effective I’d agree the .380 isn’t bad, and off on another point what had become fashionable during prohibition with mobsters were these light weight purse handguns, .25 was popular and carried over to other areas of life including fiction.

I guess what the point is more important than the virtue of the round or design, because a solider is concerned about suppressing a enemy wave, every bullet has to count.
where let’s say a gentleman spy only wants one shot at the right moment. If we are being totally honest in a realistic sense any time bond might be called to kill, his enemy would supply him with higher caliber fire power.




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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby dirtybenny » Fri Dec 28, 2018 12:08 am

Indeed Big O, it seems you and I are the only ones interested in this topic, of course I didn't do it any justice by muddying the waters with a history lesson, course on ballistics and then follow it up with an invitation to argue over the PPK especially when most folks on here could care less.

My question to every one else: would this thread be of any value to anyone if perhaps I for lack of a better term "dumbed it down" and wrote on one topic at a time and made sure not to get too intricate? Maybe I could take questions anyone has about guns seen in Bond, or the use there of?
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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Capt. Sir Dominic Flandry » Fri Dec 28, 2018 1:15 pm

Of course there are strict gun controls in the UK so I'm not an expert on them. But discussion of them is interesting.. Also I remember John P. Drake did a Bond gun elimination game.
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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Kristatos » Sat Dec 29, 2018 5:10 pm

Not Bond-related, but I do have a question for the knowledgeable folks in this thread. My wife was watching a cop show on TV, and a plot point involved the murderer putting two types of bullet into the same gun in order to make different report sounds and fool any witnesses into thinking that two guns were fired instead of one (don't ask me why, I wasn't really watching). I just wondered whether this was possible.
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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Omega » Sat Dec 29, 2018 5:43 pm

I’m not sure, what do they mean by bullet? Caliber of round (different sizes)?


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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Kristatos » Sat Dec 29, 2018 5:49 pm

Omega wrote:I’m not sure, what do they mean by bullet? Caliber of round (different sizes)?

I think so.
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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby dirtybenny » Sat Dec 29, 2018 11:46 pm

If I understand the scenario correctly it sounds like they're saying 2 different calibers which would make slightly different sounds were used, the only possible way would be a revolver chambered in .357 which will also take the .38 round which is the same size but less powder. In a semi auto though impossible.
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Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Omega » Sun Dec 30, 2018 2:04 am

I can’t think of any practical way to do it. There are close calibers but besides a revolver (like a 357 as DB said) , just about anything else would blow up or possibly fail in some other catastrophic way. That would be hard to explain as the person they just tried to murder has to administer first aid because the gun blew up. “Don’t know what happened officer he walked in here with a strange look in his eye fumbles about with a hi-point handgun, there were two sharp pops like a firecracker in the distance and he fell to the ground begging I call 911”

Reminds me. There was some jackass around here gotta be 15 years ago who while “cleaning” his glock slipped a 9mm round into the chamber of I want to say .40 cal (kris think 10mm bullet for size comparison) of course it it didn’t feed correctly the action became jammed. he kept trying to open it eventually somehow pulling the trigger shooting himself in the leg. Gun was all kinds of messed up too.

Personally I think he was trying to shoot on the cheap because .40 cal at one point was a lot more expensive than 9mm which was soo cheap it didn’t pay to reload it. Maybe it still is the case I haven’t priced it out in some time.




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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Count_Lippe » Tue Jan 01, 2019 3:57 pm

Travis Bickle also used the Walther PPK.

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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Kristatos » Tue Jan 01, 2019 4:00 pm

Count_Lippe wrote:Travis Bickle also used the Walther PPK.

I wonder if that was a deliberate Bond reference? Martin Scorsese lives and breathes movies, so it wouldn't surprise me.

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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Count_Lippe » Tue Jan 01, 2019 4:43 pm

Kristatos wrote:I wonder if that was a deliberate Bond reference? Martin Scorsese lives and breathes movies, so it wouldn't surprise me.

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Could very well be a reference, and he used the Magnum .44 as well which of course is another well known movie gun, the Dirty Harry revolver.
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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Kristatos » Tue Jan 01, 2019 4:44 pm

Count_Lippe wrote:
Kristatos wrote:I wonder if that was a deliberate Bond reference? Martin Scorsese lives and breathes movies, so it wouldn't surprise me.

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Could very well be a reference, and he used the Magnum .44 as well which of course is another well known movie gun, the Dirty Harry revolver.
In movies written by his friend John Milius.

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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Count_Lippe » Tue Jan 01, 2019 4:50 pm

And speaking of Walther pistols, Bond also used the longer barrel 9mm Walther P38 in Goldfinger.

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Both the Walther PPK and P38 are good looking vintage secret agent pistols, and not modern more powerful but chunky looking handguns.
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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby carl stromberg » Wed Jan 09, 2019 8:27 pm

This is the iconic Bond gun image for me. :wink:

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How about the golden gun:

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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Count_Lippe » Wed Jan 09, 2019 10:02 pm

As a matter of fact even Bond used the .44 Magnum, in Live and Let Die.

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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby Count_Lippe » Wed Jan 09, 2019 10:09 pm

carl stromberg wrote:How about the golden gun:
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I think that was just a movie prop.

This thread is about real life guns.
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Re: Dirty Benny's Firearm Thread

Postby dirtybenny » Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:06 am

Count_Lippe wrote:
carl stromberg wrote:How about the golden gun:
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I think that was just a movie prop.

This thread is about real life guns.



I'm more than happy to discuss "prop" or "make believe" guns, anything to help further firearms understanding and add to a fellow classic fan's enjoyment of Bond! The Golden Gun is an interesting concept. A collection of everyday innocuous items which can be put together to make a lethal weapon. It would definitely come in handy when dealing with high security. The small 4mm caliber however would render it useless for the long distance feats of marksmanship Scaramanga was supposedly pulling off, unless the casing was very large and packed with gun powder which would be way too much for the small barrel to handle especially as it is just screwed on to the lighter "bullet chamber."
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