History and types of weapon – most important information
History of firearms begins in 11th century, when gunpowder was invented in China. People quickly found out that this invention will truly revolutionize the art of war. Chinese would design the prototypes for items used until know in armies. That’s where first bombs, mines and grenades were created. They also began to develop firearms. First trials were not very successful, because fire lane was throwing bullets with low velocity, and therefore it’s firepower was not too large. Rocks and pieces of metal in boxes full of gunpowder were typically used as a bullets in those times.
The true revolution came with mechanism based on barrel and bullet launcher. It was used for the first time in so-called eruptors, which, compared to older inventions, had a greatly increased firepower. What’s most interesting, if we skip all that technical differentiation, emergent firearms are working still on the same principals. However, there are many types of firearms, as many of the have completely different details. What classification was developed and can be utilized?
The basic way to divide firearm is to differentiate whether of nor it is automatic or non-automatic weapon. In the latter case, to take a shot, one has to prepare his gun manually. Single-shot weapon occurs then weapon has no magazine and bullet has to loaded manually into the barrel by user. Such type of weapon is represented by double-barrelled shotguns or sniper rifles of large calibre. If weapon possess magazines, the whole procedure of taking another shot is much shorter. We are talking in such case of repeatable gun. This kind of firearms is represented for example by Mauser-system rifles.
In case of automatic weapons, shooter does not have to take any special preparation to take another shot. We can highlight three different subgroups of weapons here.
Burst weapons are designed to operate in continuous fire. It means that shooting bullets is taking place until the whole ammunition is gone, or when shooter is loosing the trigger. Theoretically it is possible to take one shot with such weapon, when shooter would take his finger off the trigger very fast. It however requires great proficiency in using that types of firearms. The examples of such guns are most of known machine rifles.
Repeatable weapons are allowing to take only singular shots. Every shot has to be triggered. Such principles are the basis for most pistols.
Self-repeating weapons are the combination of the two above. Those weapon allow for switching between burst and repeatable fire. It also possible to changing the length of series, and therefore for example shoot with exactly five bullets in one moment. Thanks to that features, self-repeating weapons allow for great personalization and calibration, according to conditions and battle plans. This type of weaponry is widely represented, mainly in submachine guns and assault rifles.
Of course the above groups are only one of many when it comes to shooting. Firearms can be, for example, divided by their utility, application, energy etc. There are also special types of weaponry, such as artillery or rocket weaponry, which follow many different procedures, strongly diversified from the classical meaning of shooting.