Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

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Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby JamesInTheWorld » Thu Dec 21, 2006 1:00 pm

A friend of mine bought a 7.62 x39 and 12 gauge revolver from this area, fucking cool guns. Its amazing that someone can make a handgun, UZI or M-16 by hand. I have to do a visa run from Indonesia next month, Adam Air has a 200 dollar ticket special to Cebu so I’m thinking about going there on my run and check out that area, it should be cool. Plus some of the most beautiful gals in the world are from Cebu so I can satisfy both of my favorite vices, Guns and Gals.


Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing
http://www.theprofessionaladventurer.co ... AZINE.html

BOOMING BUSINESS: Although illegal, homemade firearms are ignored by police and used by political officials in an industry more lucrative than farming or fishing

Ronberto Garcia picks up a freshly-made, well-oiled automatic sub-machine gun from a formica table under a huge gazebo and screws on a long silencer.

"We sell these guns to anyone, provided they have money," Garcia says, proudly showing the weapon to a group gathered in his heavily secured concrete home.

The gun is his top-selling product and helps him make a killing, financially, in a nation where weapons sales are big business.

Garcia is the leading arms broker in Danao, a sprawling town of 100,000 people in the central Philippine province of Cebu and the center of the lucrative arms trade.

It is here in workshops tucked away in tiny back streets of Danao that self-taught gunsmiths churn out faithful replicas of arms from Israeli Uzis to 45-caliber handguns and KG-9 assault rifles used by American Navy Seals.

The illegal trade has become so large that it has surpassed the more traditional and legal methods of earning a living such as farming and fishing, according to townsfolk.

Many of the gunsmiths are former coconut farmers who have found that making guns is a more lucrative way of making a living than hanging from a tree harvesting coconuts for a few hundred pesos a day.

While there are no official statistics, thousands of people probably rely on gunmaking for money to send their children to school and to build modest cinder-block homes in Danao.

According to the Philippine National Police there are some 900,000 registered firearms in the Philippines and possibly as many as 450,000 unregistered. And that does not include the 150,000 firearms estimated to be in the hands of criminal gangs, warlords, communist and Muslim insurgents.

The local gunsmiths use thick sheets of metal salvaged or bought from ship-breaking yards in Cebu City, the bustling main port city some 35km to the south.

They used to churn out dozens of six and eight-shot revolvers called "paltiks," but as Garcia says "times have changed, and people want more powerful firearms."

Garcia is actually a fictitious name used by Danao's leading arms dealer whose family is among the pioneers of the illegal trade that dates back to the early 1970s.

"We are just plain businessmen who sell something people want," the portly 53-year-old Garcia said in his home, which is hidden from the main road and accessible only by a dirt road. You enter the heavy metal gates after passing several houses and a latrine guarded by dogs.

The copy KG-9 in Garcia's range looks exactly like the original, down to the insignia on its barrel that says: "Scorpion. Navy Seals Logistics. US government property."

Well-crafted high caliber guns are sold for up to 20,000 pesos while handguns fetch as much as 4,000 pesos a piece -- far better than the several hundred pesos typically earned by farmers on a good day of toiling in the fields.

While gunmaking is illegal, authorities have for decades turned a blind eye because it provides an alternative livelihood for the people than relying on subsistence farming and fishing.

"The sound of gunshots echoing in the air are welcomed by the townsfolk because it means money," Garcia says.

"The only time you see a lot of people in the market is when gun sales here are up. People cannot just rely on fishing and farming all the time," Garcia says. "Here, people are happy when they hear gunshots."

Sales are mostly up during election season when rival politicians beef up their private armies or security forces and during Christmas, when people have extra money to spend for guns as gifts, he said.

Guns made in Danao have become so famous that Japanese Yakuzas were known in the past to fly to the central Philippines to collect them, townsfolk say. Military officials as well as local politicians also buy them for their own purposes.

"Everyone buys from us. The military officials, some foreigners too, and civilians for their protection," Garcia says, but stops short when asked if he has ever sold firearms to communist guerrillas who proliferate in the countryside.

Danao guns are bought on a cash basis, and deals are done without any papers changing hands. Word of honor is important between buyer and seller and anyone seeking to buy is screened thoroughly.

Tension is high around Garcia's compound, and his men are on alert because recently a special police task force swooped down on his neighbor's home and confiscated 160 pieces of "bakal," the local slang for guns.

There are no actual figures as to how many guns are produced in Danao at any given time, but Garcia estimates up to 500 units of various gun models are smuggled out of the area every month.
Last edited by JamesInTheWorld on Thu Dec 21, 2006 1:33 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby lorennzo » Thu Apr 29, 2010 5:29 pm

This is what usually happens when political campaign begin.
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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby Kurt » Thu Apr 29, 2010 5:32 pm

How is the quality? Or are they more suited to be conversation pieces?
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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby mapandcompass » Thu Apr 29, 2010 5:46 pm

Hm... I'm kinda with Kurt. Are these a Khyber-pass sort of deal, where they're manufactured from sub-par components with a high risk of failure? No offense intended, but these guys are former coconut collectors... I'm not sure I trust their quality control with my face, eyesight, life, etc. But hell, for 4,000 pesos (about $90 USD as of today) it would be hard to pass up a shiny 1911.
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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby ktrout » Thu Apr 29, 2010 8:38 pm

There are people around here who make their own AK receivers from sheet steel then get the rest from boxes of parts. I've considered the idea myself. Making barrels would seem to be the toughest part, but it isn't rocket surgery.
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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby bearfood » Fri Apr 30, 2010 4:46 am

You know, I just got into reloading my own ammo, and I'm inclined to believe that if these Phillipiño fellows have the right equipment they could probably make a relatively safe and functional firearm.

I would be more suspect of the ammo you get wit yo gun yo.
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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby Woodsman » Fri Apr 30, 2010 1:43 pm

If you know what you are doing and have the right tools and metals, you can make anything you want. The only limit is your imagination and your wallet.

Any truly skilled machinist could make a rifle with equal precision to the best long range small arms available. They could make the barrels, receivers, triggers, bullets, brass, the primers - even the powder - but the machinery is not cheap (especially pro bullet swaging equipment) for that sort of work and it may be difficult making a great deal of NG + NC for the powder + R&D takes a lot of time and money.

A fully auto AK47 would be easy to make - a minigun, not so much.
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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby redfax » Sat May 01, 2010 8:56 am

Funny that they have KG-9s with "Property of US GOVERNMENT" on them.

Of course you can make anything with equipment. That's how designs are prototyped to begin with. The hard part in weapons production is making sure all the parts are interchangeable with all the other, that every single one coming out of the production line is just as good as it should be, that the process is as efficient as possible, etc

Series production is the technologically complicated step. Artisanship just takes love and time.
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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby JamesInTheWorld » Tue May 04, 2010 7:26 am

The Flips are still punching em out, my buddy went to Danao just last month

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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby Kurt » Wed May 05, 2010 5:05 pm

Lorenzo the Philipino Spammer revived this topic.

What I have been doing out of curiousity is PM the Flip spammers to see if they can offer me mail order guns.

I would not actualy have them delivered ( I am not stupid) but since they are manual spammers I figured they would look at their pms.

Nothing.

So I guess you gotta show up there...my experiment is over now.
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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby Hitoru » Wed May 05, 2010 10:10 pm

I was was wondering if anything came of your experiment.
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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby JamesInTheWorld » Wed May 19, 2010 8:39 am

Kurt wrote:How is the quality? Or are they more suited to be conversation pieces?


You wont win a match with em - but they shoot

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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby tonelar » Mon Jun 21, 2010 6:30 pm

Navy SEALS are using KG9s? You'd think they'd be outfitted with MP5ks before relying on a Tech9 variant. Every Tech9 I've encountered was a jam-o-matic.
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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby JamesInTheWorld » Mon Jun 21, 2010 10:08 pm

tonelar wrote:Navy SEALS are using KG9s? You'd think they'd be outfitted with MP5ks before relying on a Tech9 variant. Every Tech9 I've encountered was a jam-o-matic.


I was thinking the same thing, I think the info is wrong – some reporter probably saw a movie where SEALS had Tech-9’s


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Re: Filipino gunsmiths are making a killing

Postby tonelar » Mon Jun 21, 2010 11:04 pm

or rather, the reporter believed what he read on the home made KG9 clone. Filipino gun culture parrots the US on many accounts. The 1911 used to be THE HANDGUN among Filipino shooters. However, as soon as the M9 was adopted by the US Military, everyone and their cousin was trying to buy a 92 Beretta.

So, the gunmaker is being clever engraving "US Navy Property" on his product, but you'd think making an MP5 clone wouldn't be that much harder.
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