Troubleshooter Berlin, TFB’s favorite German-based amateur small arms designer, has been experimenting out in the Arizona desert with a blowback-operated design based on a Taurus 92 compact. He demonstrates that, strictly speaking, the locking mechanism on the Beretta 92 pattern of handguns isn’t necessary for the gun to work:
He had this to say about the project:
My small project over here is finally done. Took them terribly long to ship the parts I needed. The gun shops over here don’t carry spare parts, recoil springs etc.!Taurus Compact (no Beretta at hand) with locking block disengaged (cut off), 18lb recoil spring (vs. the normal 14lb) and one or two other small mods.Frame assy. stays unmodified.First rounds fired from a bench vice. I believe in what I’m doing but I’m not crazy.
A few rounds fired from the hand – could find only one shell (the one on the pistol) kicks them all over the place.
A bit more smoky than those from my unmodified reference Taurus 92 but that’s normal for blowback.
Otherwise no bulged shells – brass/aluminum or NATO +P ammo. No damage to the frame or elsewhere.
With such modifications made to the pistol, I too would be hesitant to shoot the first rounds myself:
Troubleshooter is a tinkerer, and it’s experiments like these that can be the beginning of something great. Certainly, he has proven that locking lug failures with the Beretta may not be totally catastrophic – the gun may continue to function.