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Multi-Caliber Firearms

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posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 04:17 AM
There are a number of multi-caliber firearms on the market. I've always liked convertible firearms. When I am gun window shopping, this is always a feature I am on the lookout for. I thought I would start this thread, then, on multi-caliber or convertible firearms. We should discuss and compare these interesting and versatile guns.

Some notable examples:

The Contender and Encore single shot systems. The Contender is a single shot pistol frame on which a barrel and breech for practically any pistol caliber (up to .223!) can be mounted. .22, .380, .45LC, whatever. The Encore is a more robust version of the Contender which takes the concept a step further by including most rifle rounds in it's capability. Thompson Centerfire also manufactures the Dimension line of rifles, a convertible bolt-action system.

The AR-15 can be joined to a different upper receiver and thereby modified to fire a number of different calibers. 7.62x39, 9mm, and .22lr to name a few. I think there's a 5.45x39 upper available too, among others.

Tanfoglio makes the Witness, a convertible handgun. It's an Italian gun imported by European American Armory, so you'll often see the Witness listed as an EAA product. Replacing the upper slide and barrel assembly to the frame, you can convert the handgun to a number of different calibers, including: .22lr, 9mm, 10mm, .40S&W, .45acp, .357sig, and.38Super. Not all frames and slides are compatible so be sure and research before you buy. Also kits will work best if fitted by a gunsmith, so be aware that if you add a conversion kit to your collection, some time with a gunsmith is in order.

Ruger makes a number of multi-caliber revolvers. The Single Six is a .22 caliber pistol that has exchangeable cylinders, allowing the owner to fire either .22short, .22long, and.22lr from one, or .22mag from the other. Ruger's Blackhawk Convertible pistols are available in .357, .45, and sometimes .32. The .45 model will shoot .45lc or .45acp, the .357 will shoot not only .357 or .38 but also almost everything in the 9mm family if I remember correctly, and the .32 model shoots almost everything in the .32 family. These Rugers are all very reliable firearms, with very good accuracy for a handgun.

I could go on and on, but this should be enough to get us started. Discuss.

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 05:24 AM
I have an old Colt target pistol, that goes from 22 lr to 22 mag, just by changing the cylinder. Since my Mom is 74 and can't control the recoil of anything bigger, she keeps it for self protection. I keep it loaded with the magnums and while 22 is not the ideal caliber, it's better than throwing rocks.

Chiappa makes a rifle I really want. Just by changing barrels, you get an assortment of calibers and the change out is very quick and easy. I'd love to have one, but it's out of my price range right now.

edit on 31-8-2016 by DAVID64 because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 05:39 AM
a reply to: DAVID64

The Chiappa looks good and I like the sense it makes of being adaptable to a range of calibres. I suppose it's dependent on the situation? A genuine survivalist/SHTF dystopia would suit a weapon like this. It'd be a good choice to add to the armoury of bunker owners.

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 06:37 AM
a reply to: Kandinsky

The Chiappa is a double barrel/double trigger system. The lower barrel is .22, that can't be changed, but the upper can be, to fire .45, .357, 9 mm, etc, on up to 12 gauge.
edit on 31-8-2016 by DAVID64 because: spelling. it counts

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 06:40 AM
I have a Sig Sauer P250 which is a pistol that allows you to only buy a single action (serial numbered) and mate it to different frames and barrel assemblies.

You can make it a .357, 9mm, .45acp or .40S&W

I actually quite enjoy it even though it is DAO.

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 06:50 AM
a reply to: TheBadCabbie

Interesting topic. Ive considered another handgun....Ive seen a few with one shotgun load below and a normal round above...and a few other combinations. Will be following this thread. Thanks for starting it!

*Daily CPL/CCW Holder
45 ACP

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 06:51 AM
I have a glock 31 .357 that I also have a .40 barrel for that drops right in.

Had for about 10 years now, I like it.

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 07:12 AM
Unique is a French manufacturer from the 60's. I have the Model L, which converts to a rifle, to a pistol and interchanges barrels for different calibers:;_ylt=A0LEVwnMx8ZXcV4AgChXNyoA;_ylu=X3o'___'EyMWRnMjI1BGNvbG8DYmYxBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDQjI1NDBfMQRzZWMDc2M-?p= Unique+Model+L&fr=mcafee
I received this from my Marine Gunny uncle when he passed.

I have a raging Judge magnum, .454 cassul, .410 shotgun and 45lc, frankly the LC and .454 are wasted on this pistol, I solely load the .410 and consider it more of a blunderbuss.

My Super Redhaw .454 cassul/45lc 7.5 inch barrel is my favorite as I can plunk with .45lc fiochi rounds (dont foul the bore too terribly) for alot less money than running 49$ boxes of 300 grain cassul through it for target shooting.

Smith and Wesson .357 is also nice for the same reason, .38 special for plunking, .357 for, well other stuff.

Generally If there are more than 2 calibers without a barrel change, they are not going to be as effective as a solo caliber gun. I have changed to purchasing for specific arms, for specific tasks...just my experience.

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 07:18 AM
I have been a fan of Ruger handguns for a long time. Very good guns, well made, accurate, and comfortable to hold and fire. I had a blackhawk and a redhawk and I love them both.

One of the best, most cost efficient, solutions to the caliber issue is the single shot multi-caliber platform. There is a reason they are the choice of many competitive shooters.

One that I have now is a S&W .357. It is great for target shooting, .380, and for home defense, .357. Using .380 range loads for practice is very inexpensive. I usually slip a .357 or two in the mix just to remind me what it is like to fire them and it keeps me on my toes not knowing when that round will chamber. It makes me focus on the basics for every shot, not the flash and bang of the bigger round. Let the other guy be amazed by that...
edit on 31-8-2016 by Vroomfondel because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 07:33 AM
A bit expensive and a bit heavy but Drillings rifles are pretty cool. Double shotgun with rifle in the middle. One shot gun with two rifle barrels or just three different rifle barrels on one gun
a reply to: TheBadCabbie

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 08:00 AM
a reply to: Athetos

Well, I'll be, now that is something new on me. I cannot imagine carrying it in the field, but oddly enough the goof ball part of me wants one with all the barrels. I bet thats a pretty spendy proposition. Star for showing us something super curious.

reply to Vroomfondel:
Yes I love everyone of my Rugers. Even the ol classic 10/22, their barrels are impeccable. My Super Redhawk is my favorite gun all around, chambered in .454 with 7.5" barrel I can hit at ungodly ranges and take down any quarry in this hemisphere and the other except an elephant, which I cant imagine ever wanting or needing to do that.

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 08:15 AM
a reply to: TheBadCabbie

HK made a multi caliber semi auto HK4 that came with barrels, slides, and springs in a kit in the late 1960's. It was a blowback design and came in .22, .25, .32, and .380

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 09:48 AM
Ruger super redhawk,can fire .44 mag,44 special,and .44 Russian[IIRC],versatile caliber,the .44 Rem mag,thanks Elmer Kieth and the others who brought it about.Building another AR15 in 6.5 Graendal,probably get a .50 Beowulf upper and use it on the same lower.Good thread.

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 10:00 AM
a reply to: DAVID64

The Chiappa looks nifty but I would imagine toting around 8 extra pistol barrels would put the weight factor too high up to be practical. If SHTF .22, .223, 7.62 x 39, 9mm will be still be easy to find along with 12 and 20 ga. Give me a good rifle and a lightweight backup pistol for that scenario - AR15 and a Ruger PC9. Forget about hunting as any shots will give your position away, trapping will be your easiest source for protein.

I have a TC Contender with .44 mag and 3x scope. It's far and away the easiest deer hunting rig I have.

edit on 31-8-2016 by Asktheanimals because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 02:54 PM
I have a number of the Contender frames and barrels and the larger Encore with the 209x.50 cal muzzleloading barrel (shot my moose with it
). The scarriest one of the bunch is a 10" .45-70 Gov't barrel for one of the Contenders. What. A. Beast. The noise is just fantastic. The first time I shot it, and I only shot it three times, about 30 minutes after I stopped I passed out and when I woke up I couldn't stand on my own. This was with ear protection. It just rattles you.

One of my other favorites is my Smith & Wesson 686+ .357 Mag/.38 Spl. with a 6" barrel. I can't speak highly enough of this firearm, so I won't. Just get one if you can.

That Chiappa reminds me of a rifle by Springfield Armory called the M6 Scout, which they made in .22 LR/.410 Ga. or .22 Hornet/410 Ga. These were awfully neat guns. I even had some special .410 shells that went with it that were aluminum for cold weather.

That Colt looks like a Frontier Scout. I have sold a few of those that were gold plated for my home state of Maine that comes with a tacky gold plated Lobster. I guess a bunch of states, if not all of them, have their own edition. I think I remember seeing a CRMP edition once.

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 07:33 PM
a reply to: TheBadCabbie

Glocks are also somewhat multi caliber capable though usually it's easier and cheaper to just find a used glock in the new caliber you want.

I also own an MGI military hydra (umm OK so more like 3 of them, but this is another story) which can run everything from .22 caliber conversion kits to 5.45 5.56 7.62x39 & 7.62x51 along with several pistol calibers each with their own magazine well specifically designed to let them use magazines actually designed for the round. Stupidly I sold my 5.45x39 magazine well and very much regret it. Buying the whole rifle also nets you their quick change barrel upper receiver which makes swaps to things like Grendel 6.8 spc and 300 blackout seriously convenient. Also of note on the quick change barrel situation, it makes caliber swaps MUCH cheaper because you can swap in any barrel with a standard specification barrel extension installed. Technically with blackout the ONLY part you need to swap is the barrel which can be done in under 15 seconds. If I seem to be a bit of a fan boy for this system it's because I really am.

Colt makes their .308 rifle that you can convert to 5.56 or any other caliber you can stuff in a magazine capable of using a STANAG magazine well. It uses a magazine well adapter block and a clever take down pin adapter. This system requires you to swap complete upper receivers, and I believe uses a proprietary buffer.

Then there's the Olympic arms setup that uses a proprietary .308 upper a proprietary but cool buffer system and a proprietary lower with a slide out front take down pin interface. It will take standard 5.56 uppers. I see some potential in all of this to do really cool stuff, and hope to pick one up soon. It takes 5 round single stack magazines when being used in 308, but for many users I can see that being no problem.

These systems all have their own unique plus annd minuses.

Also there's my obscure unicorn wish gun the Medusa revolver... PS don't buy colt because they killed my beloved Medusa, bastards.

posted on Aug, 31 2016 @ 09:55 PM
yea those rifles are pretty crazy I think I Would go for double 12 gauge with a 308 in the middle or as you said 3 rifles. .22 mag.308 and .444 maby for some shock value

In the hand gun realm the Taurus Judge is pretty crazy my dad has one it can fire .45 colt .454 casull and .410 shot gun shells. It's a beast and feels like your holding a barbell horizontal. It's hard to shoot accurately due to its weight but it's still a really fun gun on the range draws a lot of looks.

a reply to: BlueJacket

edit on 31-8-2016 by Athetos because: (no reason given)

posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 12:05 AM
a reply to: Athetos

The S&W governor can fire all the rounds the judge can while also being compatible with .45 acp. Really the price isn't much different between the two either. When it comes to build quality though, the governor is definitely worth the price difference.

If I was a revolver guy I'd totally own one.

Since I'm not one though, they all seem kinda silly to me. Though who am I to judge? A friend of mine and I were discussing a p90 style bush carbine in 460 Rowland 38 casull or 40 super awhile back. These are equally punchy rounds, but at least with that you'd have a hell of a lot more per magazine and a stock to let your shoulder take some of the recoil.

posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 12:41 AM
i do love the reliability of a good revolver assuming you keep it cleaned and maintained. A stock is always a pro for handling and aiming as any one using a hand gun knows it's no where near as easy as on TV.

For me personally I like revolvers but as you stated it usually just 6 shots and your out/reloading hopfully with a speed reloader. We can't carry here so that option is out. Shotguns on the other had can be kept in a vehicle and are great for home defence.

SKS is another great cheap gun readily available.

a reply to: roguetechie

posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:06 PM
a reply to: Athetos

The SKS is also a phenomenally good gun within it's limits.

Part of the reason I'm not a revolver fan is that I'm a home builder. The difference in capabilities, tools, and outright near Vulcan mind meld you need to have with a revolver platform to really do class A work on them versus semiautomatic stuff is truly phenomenal.

It's why most good to great revolver gunsmiths specialize in at most a handful of models while a good to mid tier gunsmith who works on semiautos is only really limited by what platforms he can get solid information on.

So for a tinkerer and home builder like me whose joy comes almost more from doing the work myself semiautos are where it's at.

Though one day I very much hope to be skilled enough to build a copy of Maurice the frankenruger but in a version of the old bullpup hold out revolver. Something about a 12-16 round capacity before reloading pocket revolver is just too cool for me to not want.

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