Buffalo Arms made a name for themselves manufacturing machine guns for WWII. Then later, someone in the company decided to find out how small they could make a .357 magnum pistol. The resulting firearm, was the Buffalo Arms Model 1, a .357 magnum derringer.
The manufactured about 10,000 of them before they closed up shop. The firearm itself is a two shot, single action, over/under design. Each time you pull back the hammer, it automatically alternates between the barrels.
I picked mine up the other day at a sheriffs auction, and went over to Anthony Arms and gave it a try.
The guy that decided it was a good idea to make this pistol? That guy was an asshole.
Now, first off, derringers are small, while the .357 magnum is a rather large round. Usually, when you fire a larger round, you have a larger gun. The size and weight of the firearm help to reduce the recoil. That’s not the case with a derringer. Where as most .357 firearms come in close to 30 ounces, the Model 1 weighs just 19. Likewise, on a larger pistol with a higher barrel, the recoil tends to move the gun up and back, not so with this one. The full force seems to be driven directly back into your hand.
I’m fairly certain that the phrase, “This is going to hurt me more that it hurts you,” was coined by a man before shooting someone with one of these things. The next time I shoot this thing, it will be to kill someone. I’m not saying that out of any kind of bravado, but because if I pull this thing out, it’s because the world is ending, and the mutants are already inside my safe house. This is not a gun that I will be taking to the range unless I’m going with someone I hate, and I want to play a cruel prank on.
On the way out, I saw a Coonan .357 1911 in the rental case. I had a box of .357 at home, and had to buy another at the range since you can’t bring your own ammo. This means I now had 90 rounds. This is 88 more than I plan on firing out of this thing, so I figured why the hell not.
The Coonan was an absolute pleasure to shoot. The only difference between it and a regular 1911 is the size of the grip, and the fact that it’s about twice as loud. If you are in the market for a good .357 magnum, I’d highly recommend you pick up one of these.