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US Test Trials .45 Caliber Knoble Pistol

Sold for $25,875.

One of the domestic American pistols entered in the US 1907 pistol trials was this short recoil, toggle locked design by W.E. Knoble of Tacoma Washington. Knoble submitted two experimental pistols to the trial, one with a single action trigger and one with a double action trigger – although he was unable to attend the trial himself. Unfortunately for Knoble, the trials board found his guns crude and unsatisfactory upon examination, and they were dropped from competition without having fired a single shot. The Luger, Colt/Browning, and Savage would go on the be the winners of the initial trials, with the 1911 ultimately winning.

Knoble’s .45 caliber pistol here does certainly lack the finesse of many other pistols, but it did not appear to me to be dangerously crude, and I am a bit surprised that it was not at least test-fired by the trials board. At any rate, Knoble did make a few other guns of a similar style in .30 Luger and .22 Long Rifle, but never had a design reach a production stage.

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