Tag Archives: welrod

Z Man Loadout

The “Z Special Unit” or “Z Force” detachments, immortalized in the early Sam Neil/Mel Gibson action film Attack Force Z (which included some great suppressed M3 Grease Guns and folbot action from an Oberon-class SSK) ripped up Japanese held islands throughout WWII. There is a really fascinating history behind these units and the redoubtable men who served in them.

Check out this loadout, showing a Webley/Enfield revolver, M1 Carbine, the wicked Welrod suppressed .32 “special purpose” gun, a machete (or possibly one of William E. Fairbairn’s Smatchets), and pack, courtesy of A Secret War.

Now, that looks fun. (Photo: A Secret War)

Welrod Redux

If you are a fan of guns, you know what this bad boy is:

Yup, the almost totally suppressed .32 ACP Welrod pistol, designed at Station IX by the SOE’s Inter-Services Research Bureau during WWII.

In 2014, Swiss gun maker Brugger & Thomet introduced the VP-9, or Veterinary Pistol 9, a gun that was designed much along the Welrod’s lines and intended for limited use for humane field euthanasia in extremis.

The BT VP9. Can you say, “polymer Welrod?”

Fast forward to this week and the company, now rebranded over here as B&T USA– and with Army and USAF sub-gun contracts under their belt— has come clean that the VP9 was created back in the day for a “special user” then marketed to cow and horse docs since the R&D was already done.

Better yet, they have a new and improved version they intend to offer to the consumer market in 2021, NFA rules apply.

The name? Station 6. Get it (Station IX)?

Boom

More in my column at Guns.com.

Some things never go out of style

Exotic Swiss arms maker Brügger & Thomet is probably best known for their MP9 series firearms, but have you “heard” of their VP9?

The manually-operated VP9 (veterinary pistol, 9mm) is meant for humane euthanasia by large animal vets in the field and has an integrated suppressor that they bill as the “most quiet pistol in this calibre on the market.”

With a five-shot magazine, it only has two moving parts and at 11.25-inches overall length with its largest can, is about the size of an M1911, though is much quieter. Like classic Welrod (a British WWII design it favors that also used internal wipes) quiet. It sucks that rubber wipes are considered by ATF to be “silencer parts” over here, which makes it rough for U.S. suppressor makers to come up with comparable designs as its impractical to repack these old-school cans on a regular basis.

In the above video by 5.11, they visit B&T AG and talk with Reto Flutsch (that name, tho) and go loud quiet with a VP9.

For more on it’s grandpa, check out the video from Ian with Forgotten Weapons, below.

Sometimes you have to break a few eggs

Bjorn Sibbern was born May 18, 1916 in Soro, Denmark and by 1940 was a Danish police officer. When the Germans invaded he remained at his day job– which he as a cover to investigate those suspected of being Nazi informers– while at night he helped manufacture false papers for the underground.

And he also liked scrapbooking.

Bjorn Sibbern danish cop and underground welrod used to assasinate ID card of a female member of the Danish Nazi party photo via holocuast museum

As noted by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum about this page from his scrapbook donated to the museum:

The Danish police played a major role in support of the Danish resistance movement, and some documents relate directly to Mr. Sibbern’s work in the underground. He was in charge of the printing and issuance of false identification cards. There are several examples in the scrapbooks. The albums contain both real and forged cards as well as his forgery stamps. The scrapbooks also contain leaflets dropped over Denmark of Nazi propaganda, anti-Nazi cartoons and photographs of German officials, Danish collaborators, sabotage and demonstrations. Every page is fully annotated in English.

Pictured is a British Welrod, which Sibbern explains was used by Resistance “Liquidation” groups for rubbing out informers and high value targets. Chambered for .32ACP (7.65x17mm), the same caliber as many popular Italian, German, and Japanese pistols, the gun was stated to be able to fire a 72-grain Kynoch leadhead at 920fps.

The firearm developed by the SOE was not a traditional pistol fitted to a silencer—it was a pistol built around a silencer. To keep gas from escaping from a cylinder like on a revolver or a cycling action like on a semi-automatic, the Welrod was bolt action. The simple and effective bolt action could be worked rapidly for a follow-up shot if needed, and doubled as a safety device. The integral suppressor built around the barrel was made up of 12 thin metal washer baffles separated in groups by three leather wipes.

The baffles would start to deteriorate with use and typically was no longer suppressed after about 15-20 rounds, though could still be used as a rather funky pistol. The nose cap of the suppressor was hollowed out to allow it to be pressed into an intended target without undue back blast. The magazine itself, encased in a rubber sleeve like a bicycle handle, formed the pistol grip. With few moving parts, it could be broken down and stored in pieces that did not resemble a firearm. In fact when disassembled it rather looks like a bicycle pump, of which thousands were in common use in occupied Europe.

It was made in two varieties, the MkI and MkII.

“This pistol, only 11.5-inches long, gave off less noise than a pop-gun and was well-suited for ‘attic executions'” notes Sibbern.

Not your typical scrapbook.

The Welrod Assassin Gun: WWII’s Phantom Plinker Supressed Pistol

In the dark days of World War II, the British SOE and American OSS ran a myriad of operations behind the lines in both Nazi occupied Europe and Japanese occupied Asia. They set up resistance groups of local insurgents and supplied them with weapons, training, and equipment to help set the Axis rear aflame. One of the weapons they supplied was meant especially for assassination. This mysterious suppressed pistol was known (we think) as the Welrod.

The firearm developed by the SOE was not a traditional pistol fitted to a silencer—it was a pistol built around a silencer. To keep gas from escaping from a cylinder like on a revolver or a cycling action like on a semi-automatic, the Welrod was bolt action. The simple and effective bolt action could be worked rapidly for a follow-up shot if needed, and doubled as a safety device. The integral suppressor built around the barrel was made up of 12 thin metal washer baffles separated in groups by three leather wipes.

The baffles would start to deteriorate with use and typically was no longer suppressed after about 15-20 rounds. The nose cap of the suppressor was hollowed out to allow it to be pressed into an intended target without undue back blast. The magazine itself, encased in a rubber sleeve like a bicycle handle, formed the pistol grip. With few moving parts, it could be broken down and stored in pieces that did not resemble a firearm. In fact when disassembled it rather looks like a bicycle pump…

Read the rest in my column at GUNS.com

Welrod mk 1 pic