Wilkinson Arms Linda Carbine
If you’ve ever read any of my previous articles, or seen any of the videos I’ve produced, you know that I have an obsession with pistol-caliber carbines. Fast-shooting with very little felt recoil, the idea of a little semiautomatic carbine chambered in an affordable, yet potent little cartridge has always fascinated me (and caused irreparable damage to my bank account).
The other firearms that are ruinous to my bank account are Cold War-era carbines and pistols whose designs seems torn between eras. From the wood-stocked Armalite AR-180 SCS and the integrally-suppressed Sterling Mk. V, to original UZI carbines with wooden stocks, Ruger’s AC556, and guns from around the time of the Vietnam War, I appreciate guns that have a unique feel and look to them, which is often lacking in modern firearms.
In the early 1980s, the original Wilkinson Arms offered the Linda in a pistol version. The current Wilkinson Arms will also produce these via special order.
It’s hard to pinpoint exactly, but these firearms share a design philosophy that is equal parts WWII-stamped subgun, atomic-age rocketry and 50s chic interior design. By this, I mean the designs are still functionally utilitarian, like war-time production guns, but feature blended, aerodynamic aesthetics featuring wooden accents, in an attempt to reduce weight and appear modern and streamlined, but also familiar.
I’ve always believed this was because engineers at the time were hitting the first real wall in terms of performance gains in small-arms tech. Firearms are a mature technology; the quantum leaps in accuracy, reliability and effective range seen during the First World War aren’t possible with today’s designs.
One glance at the internals of the Linda, and shooters will immediately know it’s not lightweight. The receiver is milled from a single piece of steel—it’s more Thompson