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Old July 29, 2012, 05:07 PM   #28
mje
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Join Date: February 11, 2012
Location: Southeast Michigan
Posts: 16
The first semiautos were based on existing designs. Browning's first semiautomatic was a modified lever action rifle that used gas to work the action, and that required smokeless powder. A gas operated BP weapon would require complete cleaning after very few shots.

The idea of a simple blowback action may seem obvious in retrospect, but it really required very original thinking. Who would have thought to design a rifle in which the bolt was held in battery by a spring?
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