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Lakeside Vindicator BF1: A Belt-Fed .22 Plinker

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In 1983, Dennis Tippmann started a company making beautiful half-scale Browning machine guns, fully functional and chambered for the .22LR cartridge. This was a pretty cool idea, and the guns remain popular today because of their mechanics and easy transportation and cheap shooting cost – but the passage of the Hughes Amendment in 1986 cut off registration of new transferrable machine guns. Tippmann sold the company shortly thereafter (moving into paintball markers), and it was owned by Vollmer until 2001 when it was bought by Eric Graetz of Lakeside Machine.

The BF1 Vindicator was designed by Graetz as a way to make a fun recreational plinking machine gun using the tooling he already had for the Tippmann Brownings. The BF1 handles like a Mini-14, but is fed via a miniature Browning belt-fed system. A total of 61 were made, 50 in .22LR and 11 in .17 HM2 caliber – some as post-sample machine guns and some (including this one) as semi autos. They are long out of production now, but are a fun gun for the belt-fed enthusiast who wants something with less infrastructure and overhead than an M1919A4 or the like.

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