Bailing out with the rarely seen Bushmaster Arm Pistol (VIDEO)

Hank Strange visits with the Matt Gwinn-designed “Arm Pistol” an oddball produced by Bushmaster back in the 1980s for an Air Force contract that never got off the ground.

There were several variants of the Arm Pistol that popped up from the mid-1970s until Bushmaster ended the line in 1988 but the basic concept was a .223 Rem chambered handgun with an 11.75-inch barrel and STANAG mag well but using an AK-47 style piston system. Offered to the military for use as a lightweight and compact survival piece for aircrew lost behind the lines, the company reportedly closed a deal in 1985 with the USAF for 2,100 guns which was later rescinded, leaving Bushmaster to sell them commercially.

Hank’s is provided by Walter Keller at Safety Harbor Firearms, who has an early model variant with the charging handle on the top of the receiver. Later models used a side-mounted handle.