Blow Forward
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Blow Forward
Blow forward (left) vs. blowback (right) operation.
The Mannlicher M1894 pistol, the first blow-forward firearm.

Blow-forward is a firearm operation type where the friction and pressure of the bullet traveling down the bore drag the barrel forward.[1] This forward barrel motion provides most of the energy required to eject a spent cartridge case and chamber a fresh round. This mechanism contains a minimum of moving parts and is more compact than other operating mechanism of equal barrel length.


In blow-forward, the frame incorporates a fixed breech face and the barrel moves away from the breech (frame) during the cycle of operation. In contrast, blowback firearms have the frame fixed to the barrel and the breech face moves in relation to the frame. The breech face is a part of the moving slide or bolt, depending on the layout of the blowback firearm.

Due to the reduced mass of rearward-traveling parts coupled with the increased mass of the forward moving parts (barrel in addition to bullet and propellant gasses), recoil energy is significantly greater than other operating mechanisms. The barrel and spring are generally the only moving parts. Most blow-forward guns rely partially on the inertia of the barrel as the rest of the firearm recoil away from it.[2][3]


The first blow-forward firearm was the Mannlicher M1894 pistol and protected under U.S. Patent 581,296 . The principle has been used in a few other weapons, including:

For an extensive list, see List of blow-forward firearms

See also


  1. ^ Hammerfell, Richard (7 March 2015). Firearms Illustrated - Pistol Edition. Digital Services. p. 166. GGKEY:PKJGL3K97WH.[ISBN missing][dead link]
  2. ^ Smith, B. (7 March 2015). History of the Handgun. Digital Services. p. 1896. GGKEY:5F3APLD7J8C.[ISBN missing][dead link]
  3. ^ Cunningham, Grant (2012). Gun Digest Shooter's Guide to Handguns. Iola, Wisconsin: Gun Digest Books. p. 22. ISBN 978-1-4402-3276-3.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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