POTD: A Magazine Ejecting Pistol – Grant-Hammond Prototype 32 ACP
Welcome to today’s Photo of the Day! Here we have a really neat and very rare Grant-Hammond handgun. This particular one is a prototype that operates on a blow-forward mechanism. The way it works is the barrel shroud is a hollow tube and the barrel itself ends about an inch away from the muzzle. After the barrel ends there is a small gap and then a smooth barrel. The trapped gas sends the slide moving forward until the gas pressures become safe and the slide will recoil to the rear causing the old cartridge to be ejected, the hammer cocked, and a new round picked up. As mentioned in the title the magazine literally ejects itself after the final round is fired. The magazine has a spring clip on the side which switches orientation and basically tells the gun wether it is loaded or not.
“This is an extremely rare early Grant-Hammond prototype/tool room “blow-forward” model test pistol. The Grant-Hammond Manufacturing Co. of Hartford, Conn. is best know for it earlier large frame 45ACP semi-automatic pistols that were submitted to the U.S. Ordnance Dept. for Army testing circa 1915/16. However, prior to that time the Grant-Hammond also experimented with several earlier patents for a small frame blow-forward design in Oct 1912 and July 1913 that were similar to those manufactured in Europe. The company was actually granted patents on those designs in 1915, which would probably indicate this pistol was manufactured circa 1913-1915 time frame. It has a round barrel, fixed/mounted to the frame with recoil spring mounted around the outside of the barrel. It is recoil actuated which allows the slide and barrel jacket to blow forward, to start the cycling actions. The breech bolt remains in a stationary/locked position (forward) during firing and then is pushed backward when the barrel jacket and slide housing recoil to the rear. It has a fixed front and rear sights and is fitted with a set of smooth walnut grip panels. The pistol has no proofmarks or serial number and remains totally in the white. This is probably the only Grant-Hammond small frame prototype in the white ever produced.”
Lot 3641: Extremely Rare Early Grant-Hammond Small Frame Prototype/Test 32. (n.d.). Rock Island Auction Company. photograph. Retrieved December 7, 2022, from https://www.rockislandauction.com/detail/72/3641/extremely-rare-early-granthammond-small-frame-prototypetest-32.