From collectors to hunters, these monsters of the gun world will blow you away – literally and figuratively. Check out these handguns from all over the world. Classics, old standbys, and a few rookies are all collected here in one spot for your viewing pleasure.
33. WTS .50 BMG (Browning Machine gun Cartridge) Pistol
Huge and impressive, this German monster is designed to fire against tanks, airplanes, and armored personnel carriers.
NEXT: AN OLD WEST CLASSIC
32. Colt 45-70 Peacemaker
The power and accuracy of the Single Action Army (SAA) made it a popular sidearm right from the beginning, well into the 20th century. These are usually associated with the Old West and remain popular with shooters and collectors.
NEXT: A MONSTROUS HYBRID
31. Desert Eagle .45 Long Colt
Marrying the characteristics of a shotgun and a pistol, this piece is a monstrous hybrid that could hold a .410 shotgun shell or a .45 long Colt pistol round.
NEXT: THIS ONE WILL HAVE YOU ASKING, “HOW DAH SHOOT THAT?”
30. Howdah Pistol
Originally used in Africa and India, it was typically used for defense against tigers, lions, and other dangerous animals encountered in remote areas. The name “howdah pistol” comes from the howdah, which is a large platform mounted on the back of an elephant. Safari hunters used howdahs as a platform for hunting wild animals and needed large-caliber side-arms for protection from animal attacks.
NEXT: A RUSSIAN GEM
29. Tokarev TT Pistol
The TT-30 is a Russian semi-automatic pistol developed in the 1930s as a service pistol for the Soviet military. The Tokarev is popular with pistol collectors and shooters in the West because of its ruggedness and reliability.
NEXT: THE ONE THAT DIDN’T LIVE UP TO ITS HYPE
28. Smith & Wesson Model 57 in .41 Magnum
In April 1964, Remington introduced the .41 Magnum cartridge, prompting Smith & Wesson to launch the Model 57 revolver chambered for the new ammunition. Due to a number of factors, the .41 Magnum never became the “next great police loading” that its developers and supporters envisioned.
NEXT: FEARED BY BEAR AND MOOSE
27. Taurus Tracker Model 627 in .357 Magnum
Designed for wilderness survival, this rugged revolver, when aimed correctly, can take down a bear or moose.
NEXT: BEAR PROTECTION
26. Linebaugh .500
Favored in Alaska, the .500 Linebaugh was designed as a hunting cartridge or backup firearm in areas where large bears roam.
NEXT: THE ONE YOU NEED FOR ONE SHOT, ONE KILL.
25. Thompson Center Contender G2
Claim to fame: One shot, one kill.
The Thompson Center Contender G2 has interchangeable parts with the larger Thompson Center hunting rifle.
NEXT: A CZECH FAVORITE
24. CZ 75 SP-01
Introduced in 1975, it is the most common handgun in the Czech Republic.
NEXT: ONE FOR BIG HANDS
23. Tanfoglio T95/ EAA Witness Elite Match
Because of its larger magazine width, the Tanfoglio Combat/Standard pistol can be somewhat uncomfortable for shooters with smaller hands. Aftermarket grips can be made to be as thin as the M1911 while carrying an extra 3 rounds in .45 ACP.
NEXT: THE NO NONSENSE CHOICE
22. Kahr P9
P series pistols are known for being very no-nonsense and utilitarian in appearance, having very smooth and consistent DAO trigger pulls of approximately six pounds, large and easy to see sights in various configurations, and having a fully enclosed trigger transfer bar.
NEXT: THAT BABY THAT IS ANYTHING BUT
21. Baby Eagle II BE9915R
Right now, the Baby Eagle name is used on a new series of striker-fired polymer-framed pistols.
NEXT: THE ALL DAY, EVERY DAY
20. CZ SP-01 Phantom
The CZ 75 SP-01 Phantom, the newest member of the CZ 75 family, is 1/3 lighter than the steel framed models, making it ideal for all day carry.
NEXT: THE SMOOTH CRIMINAL
19. Beretta 92FS (M9)
This design ensures smooth feeding and ejection of ammunition, allows easy clearing of obstructions, has good accuracy, and increased corrosion resistance.
NEXT: A BRAZILIAN GEM
18. Taurus PT92
Less expensive than the Beretta 92, the Taurus PT92 was originally made by Beretta in Brazil – specifically for the Brazilian army. It has since been adopted by Brazilian gunmaker Taurus.
NEXT: BEST KEPT HIDDEN
17. Springfield XD
The Springfield XD is a semi-automatic pistol particularly suitable for concealed carry. The highly chloride-resistant finish allows the pistol to withstand the effects of perspiration.
NEXT: USER-FRIENDLY MODEL
16. Glock 17 Gen 4
The Glock has a lot of unique features, such as a strong, lightweight frame, resistance to oil and water, and minimal maintenance. Its trigger action does not require extensive training.
NEXT: NO TOOLS NECESSARY
15. Walter PPQ
The Walther PPQ is a short recoil-operated, locked breech semi-automatic pistol that can be broken down into its main parts or field stripped with a take down catch without the help of tools.
NEXT: SUPER ACCURATE
14. BERETTA 96A1
The cold-hammer forged barrel on the 96A1 is designed to deliver great accuracy out of the box, while the dovetail-mounted front sight is easy to adjust to always keep you on target.
NEXT: A U.S. FAVORITE
13. COLT 1911 (.45 ACP)
The COLT 1911 is a favorite among the U.S. general public for practical and recreational purposes. It is commonly used for concealed carry, thanks in part to the single-stack magazine that makes for a thinner pistol more easily concealed. It is favored for personal defense, target shooting, and competition.
NEXT: DEVELOPED FOR THE FBI
12. GLOCK 20 – 10MM AUTO
Selected for service by the FBI in 1989 from the aftermath of the 1986 FBI Miami shootout, the cartridge was later decommissioned after their Firearms Training Unit concluded that its recoil was excessive in terms of training for average agents’ and police officers’ competency of use and qualification, and that the pistols chambered for the cartridge were too large for some small-handed individuals.
NEXT: LIMITED EDITION
11. SMITH & WESSON MODEL 686
The Smith & Wesson Performance Center only made a limited number of 686 in .38 Super for competitive shooters.
NEXT: BEATING OUT THE COMPETITION IN PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
10. RUGER BLACKHAWK .41 MAGNUM
Ruger achieved wide popularity with this firearm in a hotly anticipated new cartridge, which was both cheaper and more readily available than the Smith & Wesson Model 29 revolver. Legend has it, Ruger was able to field a .44 Magnum revolver at the same time as Smith & Wesson due to a Ruger employee finding expended .44 Magnum cartridge cases at a scrapyard and inducing that Smith & Wesson was about to launch a new cartridge.
NEXT: DIRTY HARRY’S WEAPON OF CHOICE
9. SMITH & WESSON MODEL 629 .44 MAGNUM
This Smith & Wesson masterpiece was made famous by Clint Eastwood’s portrayal of the fictional character “Dirty Harry” Callahan in the Dirty Harry movies.
NEXT: STRONGEST REVOLVER IN PRODUCTION
8. RUGER SUPER REDHAWK .454 CASULL
Introduced in 1987, the Super Redhawk is still considered the strongest revolver in production. It also beats out Smith & Wesson in accuracy and price.
NEXT: BIG GAME HUNTER
7. SMITH & WESSON 460 XVR
The Smith & Wesson 460 XVR is most powerful .45 caliber production revolver in the world, and was designed as a hunting and dangerous game defensive revolver for use in Africa and Alaska.
NEXT: THE STAR OF FILM AND VIDEO GAMES
6. DESERT EAGLE .50 AE
The Desert Eagle has been featured in hundreds of movies and TV shows, along with several video games such as Resident Evil series, Counter-Strike series and Grand Theft Auto series. This has helped to spread its popularity and general knowledge of the weapon.
NEXT: AN EASTWOOD CLASSIC
5. SMITH & WESSON MODEL 29
Another model made famous by and associated with Clint Eastwood’s Dirty Harry.
NEXT: A HUNTER’S FAVORITE
4. SMITH & WESSON 500 MAGNUM
Smith & Wesson’s Model 500 is most widely used for sport and hunting. The high energy of these rounds makes it possible to take down extremely large African game with relative ease.
NEXT: A LITTLE GUN WITH A BIG BANG
3. OPTIMA .50
The Optima Pistol is a great little gun for hunting and very accurate at ranges out to 50 yards. In a pinch, you can stretch it to 100 yards, if you have a good rest and a lot of practice at that distance with a pistol.
NEXT: BFR: CALL IT WHAT YOU WANT
2. MAGNUM RESEARCH .50 BIG FRAME REVOLVER
The name “BFR” officially is an acronym for “Big Frame Revolver”, however, collectors and large-caliber enthusiasts have been known to interpret it as “Big F*#!-ing Revolver”, due to its size and power.
NEXT: THE MOST POWERFUL HANDGUN IN THE WORLD
1. NITRO EXPRESS ZELISKA REVOLVER .600
Hailing from Austria, the Zeliska revolver is one of the most powerful handguns in the world. She produces a muzzle energy of 7,591 foot pounds. The weight of this hand cannon helps control the recoil, aiding in controlled shooting.