Ask Ian: Tractors to Typewriters, Non-Gun Companies Making Guns?79
From Brian on Patreon:
"Would you give your thoughts and comments on non-gun companies making guns? For example Baldwin Locomotive/Eddystone 1917s, IH Garands, GM M-16s, most M-1 carbines, maybe even TRW M-14s. How did the experiment work out?"
I would say that the experiment worked very well. Springfield Armory was tasked with developing production tooling for various US military production items, with the express purpose of aiding private industry in tolling up for mass production. This was an essential element in the US being able to exploit its industrial dominance during World War Two, with dozens of non-gun companies able to come online making munitions quickly and with relatively few problems. Nothing is going to go perfectly, but the track record of American non-gun companies during the war was no worse than the firms like Winchester, Colt, and H&R.
By the way, if you ARE interested in modern defense production logistics, I would highly recommend the channel Perun:
About Forgotten Weapons
At Forgotten Weapons I think the most interesting guns out there are the most obscure ones. I try to search out experimental and prototype weapons and show you how they work.