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Cobray History

Ingram M-10

By Duncan Long

Gordon Ingram returned from his duties in the US Army during WWII with an eye toward producing a sub-machine gun that was both more reliable and more efficient than those he'd seen during the war. He created a series of models that resembled the Thompson Sub-machine Gun outwardly; unlike the Thompson, however, these new guns required a minimum of machining and were simple to operate.

Of the Ingram series, the Model 6 enjoyed a very few sales, mostly to South American governments. Unfortunately Ingram's timing was bad; there wasn't much of a market for sub-machine guns and what little market there was, was being filled with surplus arms from WWII.

In 1964 Ingram set out to rethink the basic sub-machine gun design. The end of his efforts was the Model 10 or M-10. This gun is little larger than a conventional pistol but has a telescoping/folding metal stock and a front strap for aid in controlling the gun. The bolt telescopes around the barrel which extends back into the gun to just in front and above the magazine well.

Two chamberings of the M-10 were offered, one in 9mm Luger and the other in .45 ACP. Later Ingram created an even more compact version of the gun, the M-11, chambered for .380 ACP. All fire with extremely high cyclic rates; this may very well have been the factor that kept these guns from being accepted by potential buyers.

In 1967 Ingram joined forces with Mitchell Livingston WerBell III, a silencer designer. Soon the two had formed a business alliance with the WerBell suppressors being mounted on the M-10 pistols as a complete weapons system that was both compact and quiet. The two inventors spent much time trying to secure contracts from the US government (which was embroiled in the Vietnam War). But there efforts never produced any results. Military personnel were very interested in the new arms, but the orders never followed.

In the early 1970s, the rights to the gun/suppressor combination were purchased by MAC (Military Armament Corporation) and the guns became known as the MAC-10 and MAC-11. Unfortunately WerBell and Ingram lost control of the company at this point and the new owners practically booted both of them out of the operation.

A number of other variants of the M-10 have since been produced including the M-11/9 (a compact 9mm version of the M-11) and semi-auto "assault pistol" versions of the gun. All of these have met with varying success. But the original goal of Ingram, to create a viable military sub-machine gun, has never really been realized. The military just never seemed to become more than mildly curious about the inventor's super-compact sub-machine guns and has instead opted for "chopped" rifles like the AR-15 variant, the M4 Carbine, or the Heckler & Koch MP5 sub-machine gun.

For a more detailed look at the M-10 and its many variants as well as the TEC-9 and Uzi series of guns along with accessories for these firearms, see Duncan Long's lavishly illustrated book, The Terrifying Three, available for Paladin Press P. O. Box 1307, Boulder, CO 80306-1307 Phone: 800-392-2400.

Duncan Long's Home Page