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I suppose a film or series focusing highly on authenticity could bother equipping a few main characters with guns built in the actual period, and kept operational to this day. But usually, and with a premise like Westworld's, a replica can do the job as an inanimate prop or a reenactment gun just fine. Using replica guns would make in-universe sense too, given that Westworld and the other parks are newly built places. Don't take my word for it, though. It's just my impression from the visuals we see.
 
I suppose a film or series focusing highly on authenticity could bother equipping a few main characters with guns built in the actual period, and kept operational to this day. But usually, and with a premise like Westworld's, a replica can do the job as an inanimate prop or a reenactment gun just fine. Using replica guns would make in-universe sense too, given that Westworld and the other parks are newly built places. Don't take my word for it, though. It's just my impression from the visuals we see.
   
Interestingly enough, Teddy's Colt revolver looks quite weathered on the surface in late season two. But whenever I saw his gun, it looked rather clearly like a piece manufactured nowadays, based on schematics of the original model. So, even if a gun shows plenty of use on its surface, but otherwise seems mechanically almost brand new, isn't a guarantee it's a historical gun. It's more likely a replica.
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Interestingly enough, Teddy's Colt revolver [https://vignette.wikia.nocookie.net/westworld/images/1/1a/Ww_teddy_colt_saa.png/revision/latest?cb=20180624114537 looks quite weathered] on the surface in late season two. But whenever I saw his gun, it looked rather clearly like a piece manufactured nowadays, based on schematics of the original model. So, even if a gun shows plenty of use on its surface, but otherwise seems mechanically almost brand new, isn't a guarantee it's a historical gun. It's more likely a replica.
   
 
I wouldn't be surprised if the production crew for the WW series uses the same sort of dummy ammunition as you see used by American Civil War, World War I and World War II reenactment groups. Those make convincing firing noises and flashes when fired from real or replica guns, but are even more harmless than blanks (a sort of reenactment equivalent to the "firecracker rounds" that were once popular for toy guns). When Lawrence is seen firing his rifle from the freight car, the effect looked practical to me, though the flash could have been slightly enhanced with CGI. Who knows.
 
I wouldn't be surprised if the production crew for the WW series uses the same sort of dummy ammunition as you see used by American Civil War, World War I and World War II reenactment groups. Those make convincing firing noises and flashes when fired from real or replica guns, but are even more harmless than blanks (a sort of reenactment equivalent to the "firecracker rounds" that were once popular for toy guns). When Lawrence is seen firing his rifle from the freight car, the effect looked practical to me, though the flash could have been slightly enhanced with CGI. Who knows.

Latest revision as of 22:46, June 26, 2018

ReginaldDrax wrote: The extra pic is of a later model, the '88, hope that's ok.

Can you tell if the prop used in the show is a modern replica like MiB's Le Mat?

Sorry about the late reply. To tell you the truth, my impression has always been that most of the guns in the series are modern day replicas of the historical guns. Some more overtly (MiB's LeMat has a cylinder and firing system accomodating modern cartridges), others subtly, simply replicating the original weapon (without major mechanical changes).

There are certainly plenty of well-preserved weapons from the 19th century and earlier, even firearms. But most would be showing their age on the surface, even with good maintenance. Given that even very popular historical weapons (at least ones produced along a mass-produced pattern, e.g. specific gun models) were only built in limited numbers, even if those numbers reached a million, it is a lot cheaper for film crews and production designers to just buy a convincing replica of the thing.

I suppose a film or series focusing highly on authenticity could bother equipping a few main characters with guns built in the actual period, and kept operational to this day. But usually, and with a premise like Westworld's, a replica can do the job as an inanimate prop or a reenactment gun just fine. Using replica guns would make in-universe sense too, given that Westworld and the other parks are newly built places. Don't take my word for it, though. It's just my impression from the visuals we see.

Interestingly enough, Teddy's Colt revolver looks quite weathered on the surface in late season two. But whenever I saw his gun, it looked rather clearly like a piece manufactured nowadays, based on schematics of the original model. So, even if a gun shows plenty of use on its surface, but otherwise seems mechanically almost brand new, isn't a guarantee it's a historical gun. It's more likely a replica.

I wouldn't be surprised if the production crew for the WW series uses the same sort of dummy ammunition as you see used by American Civil War, World War I and World War II reenactment groups. Those make convincing firing noises and flashes when fired from real or replica guns, but are even more harmless than blanks (a sort of reenactment equivalent to the "firecracker rounds" that were once popular for toy guns). When Lawrence is seen firing his rifle from the freight car, the effect looked practical to me, though the flash could have been slightly enhanced with CGI. Who knows.

We could only really be sure about the details surrounding the series' guns if we asked the Westworld production team. Whoever works as the armorer, I suppose.

One bit that is clearly anachronistic on some of the lever rifles, but in line with newer live-action Western fiction, are the big loop levers. There seems to be little precedent for those during the rifles' actual use in the 19th century, but the idea caught on in plenty of 1950s TV Westerns and beyond. Those modified levers can be seen on Armistice's Winchester or on Hector's Mare's Leg. The original television prop for the latter was designed with such a modified reloading lever from the get-go.

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