Weapons as Political Protest: P.A. Luty’s Submachine Gun

Armament Research Services (ARES) is a specialist technical intelligence consultancy, offering expertise and analysis to a range of government and non-government entities in the arms and munitions field. For detailed photos of the guns in this video, don’t miss the ARES companion blog post:

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Phillip A. Luty was a Briton who took a hard philosophical line against gun control legislation in the UK in the 1990s. In response to more restrictive gun control laws, he set out to prove that all such laws were ultimately futile by showing that one could manufacture a functional firearm from hardware store goods, without using any purpose-made firearms parts.

Luty succeeded in this task, designing a 9mm submachine gun made completely from scratch with a minimum of tools. In 1998, he published the plans for his gun as the book “Expedient Homemade Firearms”. Luty was not particularly discreet about his activities (actually, he was quite outspoken…) and was eventually caught by the police while out to test fire one of his guns, and arrested. He was convicted, and spent several years in prison. He continued to pursue a gun rights agenda after being released, and was facing legal trouble again when he passed away from cancer in 2011.

Several of Luty’s submachine guns are still held in the collection of the Royal Armouries’ National Firearms Centre, including the one that led to his original conviction. Many thanks to the NFC for allowing me to bring that weapon to you!

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