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The Calico Light Weapons System
A gun for the new millennium

    This is the most advanced firearm that I am aware of, and is likely the most advanced weapons system which still fires a projectile, rather than some sort of death ray. Compared to the Calico, most other firearms seem like throwbacks to the last century. In referring to throwbacks from the last century, it is unfortunate that for the first four years of this millennium, until the expiration of the dreadful crime bill of 1994 on September 13, 2004, new Calico firearms, and new magazines will only be available to the military, and law enforcement. Those fortunate enough to have acquired them while they could still be had should consider themselves lucky. Here is a summary of how many of these innovative weapons were produced for the civilian market: ( I could get no breakdown on carbines as to how many were in 9mm, and how many were in .22)
Year 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 Totals
Pistol 9mm 349 900 495 676 2569 - 4989
Pistol .22 532 1800 675 688 625 - 4320
Carbine(9mm/22) 2136 1900 0 1743 5058 668 11505
As is readily apparent, there are not very many of them. Just over twenty thousand  of all types were produced before the new gun bill legislated them out of existence. Certainly, there is still the foreign market along with the domestic police and military, but the scarcity of guns, and particularly of the hundred round magazines, has done terrible things to prices. Note that production of pistols ceased in 1995 after the passage of the so called crime bill. I assume that the carbines produced after the ban were all in .22, which may be exempt under the crime bill. The 1996 add for Calico would seem to confirm this, as no mention of a 9mm model, nor of any pistol model is made. Adding to the scarcity of the guns is the matter of attrition. Though guns are built ruggedly, things break, get lost, are improperly maintained, and accidents do happen. The newest of these weapons in 9mm is six years old. The plastic bodied magazines can be somewhat fragile, and were never abundant (particularly the 100 round models).
    My personal collection contains the pistol, the carbine, three 50 round magazines, and one hundred round magazine. I am still kicking myself for not getting an extra pair of hundred rounders while they were available at a reasonable cost. I was a gun dealer back when I purchased these weapons, and could have had the hundred round magazines for about $60 apiece. Presently the magazines, when they can be found at all, sell for hundreds of dollars each. I can only hope that production of .22 rifles will keep Calico in business until the ban expires; their life has not been an easy one. On top of the ban, passed four years after they began production, equally foolish (and equally unconstitutional) laws have been passed in California which made it impossible to continue production there. They have moved from a plant in Bakersfield California to a new one in Sparks Nevada. Here they will hopefully be left alone to pursue their business and provide an honest living for their employees. There is a web site at  which presently gives little information except the company name, address, and the promise of more to come.
      There is somewhat more information about the mechanics of the gun on the individual pages for the firearms themselves, along with a passing reference to them on my pistol/carbine combo page. This gun has been used in one movie of which I am aware. This was the James Bond movie "Tomorrow Never Dies", unfortunately these weapons were carried by the bad guys. There is so little information on the Calicos, because of their short history, and stunted market, that even as the owner of a set, I have little knowledge of them, and little is available. I do expect that there will be a resurection of sorts when the ban expires.
  I have a more complete section, dedicated to the Calico series of firearms, located here