5.56 Timeline

Calico M950

Last week I talked about the Goncz auto pistol. This time we will take a peak at the Calico. This one was one of the more radical ideas for the 1980s and one I handled quite a bit back in the day. The pistol fed from a helical mag attached to the top and ejected from the bottom. You could get them in 50 or 100 rounds. I didn’t find it to be very handy or easy to use and not at all reliable. But it looked cool to a lot of people.

They made some variants in .22 long rifle. I handled one of those as well but never shot it. Other offerings were some carbines and submachine guns. You don’t hear much about them anymore but they actually still exist and make products.

American Made Calico firearms incorporate the Helical Feed System with the option of using a 50 or 100 round drum magazine. Even fully loaded with the 100 round capacity, in the 9mm versions, they are lighter than the UZI or MP-5. The Helical feed magazine can be loaded and stored indefinitely without spring fatigue, and with the Calico speed loader, the 50 round magazine can be loaded from an open box of ammo in less than 15 seconds and 30 seconds for 100 rounds

Both the pistol and carbine have virtually no muzzle climb, even with rapid firing. Spent cases are ejected straight down in front of the trigger guard for close quarter operation. This is very important in a combat or law enforcement tactical operation as shells ejecting to the right give away your position. A fully ambidextrous safety, a static charging handle with no external moving parts, and a comfortable nylon web sling offer superior handling of the Liberty III pistol and the Liberty series. All models field strip in a few seconds without tools and feature an adjusted front sight for windage and elevation. The Liberty III pistol is comparable in weight to a big bore pistol, except the Liberty III pistol has 50 rounds of ammunition.

The Liberty I and II carbines have a comfortable sliding steel butt stock that locks solidly into position for added accuracy. A full length, glass filled polymer butt stock is available.

The bolt is a delayed blowback type similar to the ones used on the MP-5 sub machine gun, except ours was specifically designed for the 9mm cartridge and is significantly smaller and lighter. It is manufactured from high strength, heat treated, S-7 tool steel that easily withstands shock, wear and corrosive fouling. The bolt, striker, springs, and buffer drop out of the receiver as a single unit with no loose parts.

As exciting as the 9mm Calico firearms are, don’t forget about our line of .22 firearms! All models feature a lightweight aluminum alloy frame and helical feed magazine, which are available in 50 round and 100 round capacities and can be stored fully loaded indefinitely without spring fatigue. The magazines are constructed of space age, high impact, fiber reinforced, and thermoplastic – the same material used in the 9mm series. The M-100 carbine has perfect balance… The placement of the magazine puts the center of gravity above the recoil, which counteracts muzzle lift and improves accuracy.

If you liked plinking with a semi-auto .22 when you were a kid, then you’ll love taking one of our M-100 series .22s on your next camping trip or weekend at the range! TIN CANS BEWARE!! All our products are Made in America

Since it was a unique looking gun and anti-gun Hollywood loves them some cool looking guns, it showed up in several action movies.

Like the Goncz, the Calico is in Total Recoil. In perhaps the saddest point of the film, it kills the hooker with three tits.

My favorite film to feature the Calico is the Sci-Fi action classic, I Come In Peace. A fun action film about an alien drug dealer.

The Goncz Auto Pistol

Goncz GA-9 pistol, with 30-round magazine, left side view

Goncz GA-9 pistol less magazine, right side view

The Goncz pistol is one of those oddballs that is all but forgotten. Produced during a time when more than a few companies popped up with The Next Big Thing. A time when Calicos and Streetsweepers could be seen hanging on the gunshop wall.

The Goncz GA-9 High Tech pistol was developed by the Goncz Armament Inc (North Hollywood, California, USA), and manufactured in very limited numbers between circa 1984 and 1990. The Goncz GA-9 pistol belonged to the almost useless class of “assault pistols” which, while having the size and weight of a submachine gun, offered the same firepower as a much more compact and comfortable “standard” pistols, used by various military and police forces, as well as by civilians (where allowed by law). The Goncz GA-9 pistol, for example, had the size of Mini-UZI submachine gun, but lacked the folding shoulder stock and full automatic firepower. The simple blowback operation, also borrowed from submachine gun world, resulted in increased felt recoil, and compromised rapid-fire accuracy. In general, GA-9, like many other “assault pistols” (such as Intratec DC-9 or Wilkinson Linda), was some sort of a “poor man’s submachine gun”, and, like others, did not succeed in this field. Unlike some other “assault pistols” the Goncz was apparently well made, but this, maybe, was one of its failing points, as the assault pistols were most attractive for marginal public, which was not ready to spend a lot on weapons.”

The Goncz GA-9 is a semi-automatic, blowback operated weapon. The tubular receiver, reminiscent of a submachine gun, was machined from steel and was integral with barrel jacket. Cylindrical bolt was located within the receiver, with charging handle attached to the left side of the bolt. The grip frame, integral with the trigger guard, was also made from steel. The Goncz GA-9 pistol featured no bolt hold-open device. Manual safety was located at the left side of the grip. Standard magazine capacity was 19 rounds; extended magazines held 30 rounds. The Goncz weapons were also available in carbine form, with longer barrel (about 16″ / 40cm long) and with permanently attached wooden buttstock.”

Type: Single Action
Caliber: 9x19mm Luger/Parabellum
Weight unloaded: not known
Length: 381 mm (15″)
Barrel length: 229 mm (9″)
Capacity: 19 or 30 rounds

One of the few things I didn’t at least handle back in the 1980s but always wanted to. I have no idea why now, but I guess because it looked cool to me back then.

The gun has a bit of a complex history to not be many made , with another company making pistols that were basically the same. Claridge Arms being the name. The gun made by them known as the Claridge Hi-Tec. All gone now once Kommiefornia banned them in 1993. Most people, if they do recall. remember it from the film Total Recall.

Ugh, I messed up

Here I am looking at the large pile of full size Recee’s Cups, I bought to give out on Halloween, hoping no kids show up so I can have all of them.

But that isn’t my mistake.

Some time back I had a Glock 19C cut for a RMR and I used it for a while. It had many merits, but I wasn’t completely sold on the setup, so I ended up getting rid of it. Later I picked up a Gen 5 G19 MOS so I would have the option to run what ever optic I would later decide to use. I wanted to try options other than the RMR.

I bought a Leupold Deltapoint PRO and a pair of Trijicon “suppressor height” sights. Got them in yesterday and installed them to use at the range today.

Mistake #1: Long ago I had read that the Leupold Deltapoint uses the same mounting footprint as the Doctor mini red dots. Nope. It uses the J-Point pattern. I should have doubled checked. Part of the reason I bought the Deltapoint is that I have many items that can take a Doctor pattern red dot, and I figured if I didn’t like it on the pistol, I could use it elsewhere.

I may still have a J-Point mount or two laying around, I’ll check.

Mistake #2: I had assumed (wrongly) that the taller “Suppressor Height” would co-witness with the Deltapoint PRO. No, it is way too tall. Now a few groups do make horribly tall Glock sights for use with the Deltapoint, but I am not going to go that route.

I’m just going to shoot with the Deltapoint for a while, then trade it for a RMR or figure out some other use for it.

I did a little bit of pistol shooting today. First I removed the Deltapoint and checked the iron sights. They were fine. The Deltapoint needed a litte of adjustment for zeroing. Initially my impacts were about 2 inches low and a inch left at about 5 yards. I made an adjustment easily using the 1 MOA clicks on the optic, and brought the group centered, but about half an inch low.

Here is where I got a little frustrated. I made an adjustment up, and was still half an inch low. So I made another adjustment up, and found my self about an inch high and an inch right.

Shooting with the dot was easy, my shots on the target tended to be touching, so I wasn’t pulling shots. It looked to me like my elevation adjustment caused the windage to shift moving the impacts right.

I dialed an adjustment down for 1 inch, and didn’t touch windage. That bought my impacts right to my point of aim.

It sure seemed to me that moving the adjustment up also shifted the impacts right. I don’t like that.

But at this point, I only put about 50 rounds though the gun with the Deltapoint. So I want to shoot with it a little more before I made a decision. Time will tell.

U.S. Military use of the Glock

In 1985 the US Military adopted the Beretta 92FS as the M9 pistol, which lead to much weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Despite the adopting of the M9 and it’s wide service, a handful of other pistols were used. For example the M45 MEUSOC M1911, H&K MK23MOD0, etc.

Some time back, some of the high speed low drag guys (Delta) were seen running around with .40 caliber Glock model 22 pistols with tan “dark earth” magazines. Around that time a longer and larger 22 round dark earth Glock magazine started to be produced. Glock fans went nuts drooling over blurry photos and when a used dark earth Glock magazine showed up they sold for ridiculous prices.

Turns out they were not the only group in the military that wanted Glock pistols. But how to get them was an issue. We already had the full size M9 in inventory, there had to be a reason to buy something else. But special mission requirements can get special equipment. So a request for a compact pistol that could be concealable was made, and that is how the G19 made it’s way the US Military.

Some ask, “It is the military, why would they need a concealable pistol?” There are plenty of time when our troops are in non-permissible environments, meeting with people where they can’t in with full gear, or working in civilian attire. Being able to conceal a handgun is a good thing. Below is a video showing MARSOC training with Glock pistols in civilian attire.

A tangential example, the USMC adopted the Glock 19M as the “M007 Concealed Carry Weapon” in 2016. (Same 19M as the FBI) The M007 was adopted for Marines that would need to conceal a pistol, such as criminal investigation units and the crew of the HMX-1 helicopter squadron.

So our military adopted the Glock 19 twice as a concealable pistol.

Glock G19MM007
G26 Gen 3 with Glock Night SightsMK 26 MOD 0
G26 Gen 4 with Glock Night SightsMK 26 MOD 1
G19 Gen 3 with Glock Night SightsMK 27 MOD 0
G19 Gen 3 MOS with Glock Night SightsMK 27 MOD 1
G19 Gen 4 w/ Night SightsMK 27 MOD 2

Yes, a generation 3 Glock with the MOS cut.

Glock won’t sell these to us. At least they haven’t yet.

What I find interesting is all the discussion about the MOS slots on various gun forums tends to be negative. Many of these internet expect say that the MOS cut is terrible and doesn’t work worth a damn, and that you should have your gun milled for the mini red dot of your choice. But oddly enough we have these high speed/low drag military folk working with them just fine.

Also, oddly enough, the military is not using the taller “suppressor height” sights. So the individuals running a Trijicon RMR, Insight MRDS, or other optic can not co-witness with their iron sights.

It is going to be interesting to see if, after the fielding of the SIG M17/M18, we will still see Glock pistols in service. After only 2 years of use, in 2018, the M007 has been scheduled to be replaced by the M18. Rumor mill is that the units fielding Glock 19s are replacing their M9 with the M17s, and holding on to the Glocks.

Dan Wesson X – CZ & 1911 Hybrid

I just want to know, who asked for this?


It started as an experiment — a grand melding of Dan Wesson and CZ pistols. Borrowing the crisp single action fire control group of a DW 1911 and combining it with the ergonomics and capacity of a CZ, the resulting pistol emerged as something great.

Designed initially for competition use, the DWX has evolved into much more than that, with both full-size and compact variants. Its locked breech barrel system is simple, ditching the standard 1911 link system and using CZ-style takedown via the slide stop. The easier take-down will be familiar to any hammer-fired CZ owner, as is removing the Match-grade barrel due to the bushing-less barrel system that resembles a P-10 or P-09/P-07.

Double-stack magazines boost the capacity of the full-size to 19+1 with flush bases, and many standard 1911 parts enable gunsmiths and competitive shooters to tune the X just the way they like it. Sights are easily customized, using a 1911-style dovetailed sight in the front and a CZ Shadow 2 style sight cut in the rear.

With the grip angle and contours that have made the CZ 75 a stand-out in the realm of pistol ergonomics, the DWX is a natural fit to most hands. The full-size DWX uses standard CZ 75 grips, while the compact DWX uses those from a 75 Compact. Corresponding magwells for the 75 series are compatible as well.
With so many ways to tune and customize, the DWX is sure to shine in USPSA Limited Division!

Full-size DWX pistols use a magazine based on the P-09/P-10 F, while compact variants use that of a 75 Compact.