Curious Relics #037: Is It Too Sleek? – The FN Model 1910
Welcome, if you are a newcomer to this fun bi-weekly segment of AllOutdoor.com! The last time around I covered the history, its variations, and how to date your personal FN Model 1910. Today we are jumping back into the FN Model 1910 and closing it out with some specifications, aftermarket parts/accessories, and a range trip. This was the first time I took my own personal FN Model 1910 to the range so I am happy to finally talk about the experience. Let’s dive right into the rabbit hole!
Welcome to our recurring series of “Curious Relics.” Here, we want to share all of our experiences, knowledge, misadventures, and passion for older firearms that one might categorize as a Curio & Relic – any firearm that is at least 50 years old according to the ATF. Hopefully along the way you can garner a greater appreciation for older firearms like we do, and simultaneously you can teach us things as well through sharing your own expertise and thoughts in the Comments. Understanding the firearms of old, their importance, and their development which lead to many of the arms we now cherish today is incredibly fascinating and we hope you enjoy what we have to share, too!
Specifications: FN Model 1910
The FN 1910 is a straight blowback operating pistol with a uniquely low bore axis. Field stripping is something we can cover in a different article but a quick breakdown involves releasing the recoil spring via the knurled front cap, locking the slide to the rear, and rotating the barrel to allow the slide to be removed, from there the striker and spring can also be removed and cleaned. These pistols were designed to have interchangeable parts between two different cartridges and all it requires is a simple barrel change (also recoil spring if the current one is old).
- Years Produced: From late 1911 to early 1912 until 1983
- MSRP In 1912: Roughly $15 (about $$444.59 in 2022)
- Number Manufactured: 701,266
- Operating System: Straight Blowback
- Chambering: 32 ACP or 380 ACP
- Barrel Length: 3 7/16 Inches
- Overall Length: 6.02 inches from heel to crown
- Weight: Roughly 1.5 Pounds
- Action: Single Action
- Safety: Manual Right Handed Thumb Safety, Grip Safety
- Capacity: 7 round box magazine (6 rounds in 380 acp)
- Front Sight: Fixed Short Front Ramp
- Rear Sight: Rear Shallow Gutter
- Grip: Black Plastic, Black Horn
After Market Parts & Accessories: FN Model 1910
Aftermarket parts are not completely extinct for the good old FN 1910. There are plenty of resources for springs like eBay, Wolf Gun Springs, and buymilsurp.com. There are also brand new manufactured striker/firing pins out there on both eBay and Sarco Inc. Beyond those integral pieces the rest is a pretty scattered bunch. Numrich is definitely the most organized rundown out there. The grips can be found all over but are almost always reproductions. Barrels are hard to find and I myself have been trying to locate a 380 ACP. Barrel to no avail. Magazines are fairly easy to track down but expect to pay around $60 at the minimum for them. There are a few miscellaneous generic leather holsters out there as well but more so for the 1922 variation given it was an accepted military and police pistol.
Range Time: FN Model 1910
This trip to the range with the FN 1910 was the first-ever. I had held these guns, taken apart these guns, and cleaned these guns but never fired them. I have found that removing the magazine on my personal FN 1910 can be kind of cumbersome. It is in pretty good shape for its age and the heel release is very stiff. Loading the magazine is just as easy as any other.
My first ever shots with the FN 1910 are as you see below. Nothing to write home about but at 15 yards I would say it is completely adequate for a self-defense scenario like this gun was designed for. The sights are extremely hard to pick up even with a slow rhythm of firing. The rear sight is a shallow notch and the front sight is an almost nonexistent peg. I am sure with any real use in a holster the front sight would be worn down to nothing in under a decade. All of that being said about the sights I am perfectly happy with the group it gave although I would say I am also not surprised the Archduke was assassinated at around five feet away.
The feel while firing was surprisingly pleasant. This gun can fit in the palm of my hand yet the grip is comfortable and full enough to mitigate any snap that the 32 ACP cartridge might lend. The cycling was smooth and ejection was precise. I did not have a single jam or malfunction in the three magazines worth of ammunition I put through it.
Alas, now I must report one small unfortunate happening while at the range. After firing the first magazine of ammunition I noticed that the right-hand grip panel had formed a crack going through the grip screw hole. This is most likely because of the age of the original horn grips, the extent that which the previous owner tightened the screw and the introduction of turbulence via straight blowback recoil. A bit of patiently applied acraglass fixed it right up and it is barely noticeable but at the very least this leaves a last-minute teaching moment; when you get a new old gun and go through and clean it make sure that you check under the grips for rust (none on this beauty) and also torque the grips down to an adequate amount of tension and not a severe amount.
Final Thoughts: FN Model 1910
Well, this closes out the last of the FN 1910 for now. If I ever get my hands on its variations or have anything to add I will be pleased to return to it. It was an absolute pleasure to take out to the range and dissect it closely so we could all talk about it. It is a piece of history in a big way and I highly recommend everyone who has a love for history look into the factors that kicked off World War One. Until next time please make sure to be safe out there and let me know if there are any topics you want to be touched on in the future!
In closing, I hope our Curious Relics segment informed as well as entertained. This all was written in hopes of continued firearm appreciation and preservation. We did not just realize how guns were supposed to look and function. It was a long and tedious process that has shaped the world we live in. So, I put it to you! Is there a firearm out there that you feel does not get much notoriety? What should our next Curious Relics topic cover? As always, let us know all of your thoughts in the Comments below! We always appreciate your feedback.