Skip to comments.The Ruby Pistol
Posted on 12/10/2018 5:06:16 AM PST by w1n1
The "Ruby" pistol is the result of France's desperate need for arms in the early days of the Great War. By 1915, much of the French industrial heartland was under German control, and what remained under allied control was producing critically needed material such as riﬂes, machine guns, and artillery.
As the conﬂict grew beyond even the most pessimistic expectations, the sheer volume of troops sent into battle literally exhausted the meager stores of small arms.
To meet this rising demand for pistols for the trenches, the French contracted with the Spanish ﬁrm of Gabilondo y Urresti-Eibar for their Ruby semi-auto pistol.
The Ruby made use of a prewar design largely copied (without license) from the Browning Model 1903. Among the changes are the deletion of the grip safety and a relocation of the manual safety closer to the trigger guard.
The resulting Ruby is a direct blowback pistol chambered in 7.65 (.32 ACP). The pistol features an internal hammer and a frame-mounted safety that goes down for FIRE. The original magazine capacity was nine rounds.
The original contract called for the ﬁrm to produce 10,000 pistols a month, but the insatiable French demand for handguns saw the production numbers increased in stages until the incredible target of 50,000 pistols a month was set.
THIS IS WHERE THE STORY of the Ruby gets messy. Since Gabilondo y Urresti-Eibar could not hope to meet that production quota, they licensed out manufacture of the pistol to other companies. Read the rest of Ruby pistol.
That insatiable French demand for handguns produced a burgeoning Spanish shade-tree firearms industry with many variants, with markings (of makers, instructions, calibers, proofmarks) tending towards the inscrutable.
That was the first thing I thought of when I saw this thread.
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