Making Sectioned Cartridges


I note the warnings posted herein of the “Don’t Try This At Home” nature regarding making sectioned cartridges. However, I have no idea how those nice examples shown in the IAA Journal are done. I would guess they are “Demilled”, reassembled and put into a milling machine fixture (mainly because that’s how I would go about it, not knowing any better). So how do the experts do it? I’ve made several cutaway guns by milling, so I probably have the skill to make a sectioned cartridge without maiming myself.


Dennis–Sorry, but you have hit upon one of the “No-No” topics of this Forum. People are welcome, even encouraged, to show their results of sectioning, but the methodology of how to do it is prohibited.


Sectioning cartridges is right to be a no-no. Do it to the wrong cartridge and you could easily end up with less fingers or eyes than you started out with. leave it to the experts. Saying that, some of the sections we see are fantastic.

I for one would like to see sectioned guns on here as well though, I don’t think its too far off the strict cartridge only principle enforced by the management. If it shows how the ammunition fits into the gun and causes it to function.


[quote]People are welcome, even encouraged, to show their results of sectioning, but the methodology of how to do it is prohibited.

That’s sure asking for trouble. Perhaps a listing of known cartridges to avoid might be helpful, at the very least.


Guy, surely that would be too general a requirement to be safe. Its a complex subject as you know. Too many variables in that. I love the sections but respect greatly the people who do them.


Vince, I have been doing some of these recently. I’ll bring them to Bisley next month for you to have a look at.


Falcon, are you definitely going to Bisley next month? sent me an email to arrange a time to meet. I’d like to see them



For the best article with pics on cutaway handguns see the twelve page article in the 2001 Gun Digest annual. titled “The Cutaway Collection of the Century” it features a large part of my collection.
Vince, I have sent a jpeg pic to you by email.



Can cutaway handguns be owned easily in the UK. Even though they cannot be fired, I know they don’t like anything that is not “deactivated” to the set rules.


Yes if the right bits are cut away and there wouldn’t be a conflict there. A reasonable cutaway would exceed the requirements of deactivation.

Two problems one big and one small. the small one is they would have to go to the proof house to have a deactivation certificate issued.

The big problem is there are no pistols here to section. So you couldn’t do it yourself even though I know you would be capable. You could get a section 5 dealer to do it for you but the cost would be prohibitive.

Or you could apply for a section 5 dealers licence yourself, which is possible but they would put a lot of obstacles in your way.

You could start out sectioning shotguns fairly easily and rifles wouldn’t be too hard. Maybe once you had a track record with them you could use your credentials to move up to pistols.

The other problem with rifles is that a lot of the old ex military clunkers that would have been ideal candidates for sectioning a few years ago are now highly prized “classics” with prices to match. Twenty years ago and old SMLE was worth £5. Now they are worth hundreds. Same really with pistols, the few dealers that are licenced to still sell them have a monopoly and prices are sky high. Exempt calibre pistols also go for silly prices and you would devalue them by sectioning.

Lots of old shotguns still available for peanuts.


I doubt there would be much of a market for sectioned shotguns. I would also have to set up a workshop at home as I’m sure work wouldn’t like me taking them in to work on.

As for obtaining a section 5 license, I hear that the cost of the security is prohibitive. I remember you telling me that Bernie Ecclestone has a pistol range in his basement. Obviously cost is no issue for him.