Calico Light Weapons System: Roller Delay and Helical Drums

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The Calico family of firearms was developed in the late 1980s, and put on the market just in time to be squashed by the 1994 Omnibus Crime Act. The heart of the Calico system was a design for a double-stack helical magazine, which was made in 50- and 100-round versions in both ,22 rimfire and 9mm Parabellum. Both pistols and rifles were made in both calibers, and I am looking at the 9mm type today. Where the ,22s were simple blowback, the 9mm Calicos used the roller delayed blowbacks system developed by H&K. The company was hoping for military or law enforcement, but suffered from a poor reputation for reliability and never got a significant military contract. They also pursued civilian sales, but manufacture of magazines holding more than 10 rounds was prohibited in 1994. Without its large magazine, there was really no reason to choose Calico, and the company basically went into a coma until the ban expired in 2004. It was sold in 2006 and still appears to exist, although I suspect they are simply working from old stocks of guns and parts.

(Disclaimer: both of these Calicos were purchased by me on the secondary market; the Calico company has no connection to this video)

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