ASP 2000 Tribute to Paris Theodore The perfect 9mm concealable combat pistol

ASP 2000 Tribute to Paris Theodore The perfect 9mm concealable combat pistol
ASP 2000 Tribute to Paris Theodore The perfect 9mm concealable combat pistol
ASP 2000 Tribute to Paris Theodore The perfect 9mm concealable combat pistol
ASP 2000 Tribute to Paris Theodore The perfect 9mm concealable combat pistol
ASP 2000 Tribute to Paris Theodore The perfect 9mm concealable combat pistol
ASP 2000 Tribute to Paris Theodore The perfect 9mm concealable combat pistol

ASP 2000 Tribute to Paris Theodore The perfect 9mm concealable combat pistol The principles behind the ASP 2000 handgun are not at all new. It doesn't have a polymer frame, it doesn't carry 17+ rounds, it isn't a "tac" gun offering dedicated suppressors, mounting rails for lasers and flashlights, or conversion to automatic fire, etc. But it brings together a unique collection of assets that make it the premiere covert carry, combat pistol in the world. The ASP is a narrow focus handgun for a person who knowingly goes in harm's way, and the ASP 2000 is an update on that theme. Although the original ASP pistol was developed in the late 1960's, it is still a revolutionary gun today. It is an exclusive, fully dedicated, single purpose combat handgun with a fascinating origin and history. In fact it was so unique and successful in it's designated role, that John Gardner dropped the iconic Walther PPK and armed James Bond with the ASP in his 007 novels during the 80's and 90's. A man named Paris Theodore ran a highly respected custom gunleather business called Seventrees, Ltd. on West 39th St. in New York City. One day the U.S. government approached him to design and custom manufacture a pistol for use by covert operatives worldwide. He was given a set of criteria no one else had yet managed to meet; concealability, eight round capacity, function with all known brands and types of bullet in a given caliber, instant target acquisition, and although the gun had to fire a major caliber round, the design had to somehow reduce felt recoil to the equivalent of firing a tiny .22 caliber round. He took bold aggressive steps, many of which flew in the face or orthodoxy. Some of his ideas have become the new orthodoxy. Others have yet to find general acceptance. But they all came together in this one handgun; the ASP. Holster maker by day. Behind the scenes after hours, he would close the blind and open the top secret safe that housed his prototypes, Paris Theodore would go to work on this less public sideline. He started with a Smith & Wesson Model 39 semi-auto pistol, a highly popular pistol that would eventually lead to the decline of the revolver. Over 25% of the original gun was discarded. Paris Theodore's design called for 286 changes, done by hand. So extensive were these changes he didn't call this a "conversion," but rather a "remanufacture". He began by chopping down the size of the slide, barrel butt and grip of the larger gun to create a concealment sized version. He made use of a computer(unusual in those days)designed for aviation developement to properly calculate the lightening cuts in the slide that gave the pistol perfect balance in the hand and helped tame 9mm recoil and move it closer to the .22 requirement. It was Theodore who first come up with the idea of adding a forefinger hook at the front of the trigger guard that allows the index finger of the supporting hand to get a better grip, further forward on the gun to better control muzzle flip and keep the pistol on target faster during recoil. Of course then, most shooters still shot one handed. Theodore was radical for the time in designing features specifically for a two handed grip that would later develope into his patented 'Quell' system. That trigger guard spur became standard on the plethora of new gun designs that came along in the 1980's. Next he smoothed and radiused all the curves, dehorned any sharp edges and angles to make a pistol that positively would not snag on clothing during a speed draw. He cut off the spur of the hammer completely. Although 9mm is common in the U.S. today, at that time in America .45 caliber was practically a religion. But in the rest of the world it was 9mm that was the most commonly available caliber, and using it let the shooter tap into the worldwide ammo availability and unequaled variety of bullet types, weights and strengths, the ASP could feed all of these rounds, and even empty cases. It also allowed the ASP to have a slimmer grip and a higher magazine capacity. If you look at the pictures of the ASP 2000. You will notice that the front sight blade is missing. Look at the rear sight. Looks very strange? It is a Guttersnipe sight (an Advanced Sighting Plane sight). The tapering bottom and two sides of the gutter appear fore-shortened to the shooter as three triangles. When the gun is aimed straight at a target the three triangles all appear the symmetrical. The eye and the brain achieve this instinctively. Armed Forces all over the world rely on a similar principle with the rear peep sight and tall front sight post on the M-16. The eye and brain line things up without conscious effort, allowing you to sight with both eyes open. No need to match up a front sight post within a V notch rear sight while also adjusting for height. And the lack of front sight let's you view what you are trying to hit, which is excellent if the target is a moving one. The 'Quell'system that Paris Theodore developed focused on the dominant use of the left eye, which gave a more accurate and faster acquisition on target. This has been proven as being effective by many psychologists since. Notice the grips on the gun. They have a transparent Lexan (stronger than Plexiglas and will never yellow, but also much more expensive) window. Through the grip you can see the side of the magazine has been cut away. You can actually SEE how much ammo you've got left. FBI tests have proven that in a firefight no one can really count how many rounds have been fired. The brain doesn't work that way. Study after study shows that to be true. So how can you tell if you're about to run dry? Conventional wisdom says you can't. The FBI advises their agents that at the first lull in a shooting engagement they should dump the magazine and load another. That advice means you could be throwing away a considerable portion of your ammunition; ammunition that you may need later to save your life. Wouldn't it be nice to tell at a glance how much ammo you've got left? Paris Theodore made it possible when nobody else had. Today the Austrian Main Battle Rifle, the Steyr AUG, comes standard with translucent polycarbonate magazines that allow the shooter to see the amount of ammo left. Nice that someone else finally followed Paris Theodore's simple, elegant solution he'd come up with decades earlier. The magazine safety has also been removed, creating an advantage when changing magazines. Those revolutionary grips are also smooth. Most guns boast about all the checkering they offer to keep the gun from sliding around in the hand. Paris Theodore knew better. This is why. When drawing the gun quickly in a stress situation it is important not to waste time fumbling for a proper and correct grip. It has to be right the first time. You don't have time to waste adjusting your grip. You could be dead. But that first grab on the gun as you draw it is rarely exactly right. All that checkering really does keep the gun from sliding, just as it s designed to do. But that mean's that wrong grip stays wrong. Now that checkering is working against you. Theodore knew that a well designed gun naturally fits properly in the hand. With smooth grips all you have to do to get the gun to slide into just the right hold is simply squeeze your hand. With no checkering to keep it from moving, a proper grip comes easily. All edges have been removed from the pistol creating a smooth and snag free design that has a similar feel to a bar of soap. If you look at the triggerguard you will notice a relief has been cut out on the right hand side, this reduces acquisition time for the trigger finger. Paris Theodore covered the frame and slide, inside and out, with low-reflection, black Teflon-S. It's very expensive stuff, but it's more corrosion resistant that Stainless Steel, wears better than gun-blueing, makes the gun self-lubricating, cleans easily and skin simply will not stick to it even in the coldest weather. Although this is a highly effective medium, it was not thought necessary on the ASP 2000 due to the innovations in the maufacturing processes of stainless steel now, and because of the Teflon-S finishes propensity to rub off quicker than most other finishes and exposing the metal beneath. The original ASP was hand made to very high standards in extremely small numbers exclusively for men who live the dangerous side, and it went by the slogan "Unseen in the best places"! It was discontinued from manufacture in the late 1980's, due in the main to the influx of cut-down S&W 39's flooding the market, and eventually Smith and Wessons own version of the ASP, the venerable and much under-rated 3913. It was upon this design, after numerous makes and models were tested then neglected, that we finally decided would be the perfect 'base' gun to modify for the ASP 2000 project. Using Paris Theodores original blue prints, we stuck close to the original concepts that he patented. It was truly a remarkable innovative combat firearm in the past, and improving on this design was very difficult and very near impossible. This project was more of an update than anything else. Ken Null designed all of the holsters for this weapon, he still makes these designs, and they are superb, he also obtained the rights to the slogan and he uses it to this day. The UNS model is the best of these holsters, and offers the shooter with an ASP, the best and fastest combination. It has been 20 years since the 9mm ASP pistol ceased production, Yet still it's design is at the forefront of peoples imagination, even over the Atlantic far away from the old New York office, Paris Theodore is remembered and will continue to be. Thanks to James McMahon for the majority of this text The trigger hook was not a shortsight, the one pictured on my site was a prototype that was designed for me by me. I did have the chance to put the hook on the guard, but opted not to as the knurled grip was an admirable and controllable option as it was. Since the interest in the ASP 2000 took off and the conversion taken up by various MOD units, who have to date ordered fifty units, the trigger guard has been made with various option - straight, hooked, polished, angled and without the cut out. I do agree with you that the original Asp had an excellent guard though. What people fail to realize that the ASP 2000 was more than a cosmetic makeover and that the internals have been radically changed too. To accommodate various and all 9mm ammo, and to reduce sound and recoil, increase accuracy and reduce operational faults. The 3913 on it's own is a fabulous pistol, these conversions elevated the performance and accuracy way above anything we would have thought possible. J. Deval

Submitted by: Jonathan Deval