The Ultimate FN Book
"The" Book on Fabrique Nationale d'Herstal
10 lbs., 10" x 13.75", 576 pages, 1500 photos (most in color), and published in 2008
Title: Ars Mechanica
Subtitle: The Ultimate FN Book
Author: Auguste Francotte - Claude Gaier - Robert Karlshausen
Publisher: Herstal Group
U.S. distribution: Wet Dog Publications
Pages: 576 pages, quality coated paper
Cover: Hardbound cover with color dust-jacket
Size: 10" x 13.75" (25.5x35 cm.)
Photographs: Over 1500 quality Color and B&W photographs
Printed and bound in Belgium
Price: Retail $89.95
More than seven years have passed since this book project, Ars Mechanica, a history of Fabrique Nationale (FN), began. Many assumed that Ars Mechanica was to be an update to Auguste Francotte and Claude Gaier’s work, FN 100 Years. Any resemblance to previous FN history books is at best superficial, however. Ars Mechanica is by far the most detailed and comprehensive work on the subject.
FN and Browning collectors have eagerly awaited the book’s release, and their patience will be richly rewarded. Ars Mechanica will come as a pleasant surprise to many, and will exceed all expectations. The book recounts FN’s rich history like no other. Its title, “The Ultimate FN Book” is no mere marketing ploy. Ars Mechanica is illustrated with over a thousand photographs, many previously unpublished, and is a visual feast for any FN and Browning collector. For many it will introduce FN not only as the ultimate arms maker, but reveal its rich history in bicycle, motorcycle, and automobile manufacturing among many other successful product lines. These products, like the arms that bear the FN logo, were examples of technical excellence. FN’s vehicle products held a number of world speed records and continue to fuel the passions of motorcycle and automobile collectors.
Years of painstaking work are reflected in this massive all-color volume. We reviewed one of the working drafts several months ago. At the time, Ars Mechanica accounted for approximately 510 color pages. Since then, several additions have been made and it is certain to grow again before going to press. Ars Mechanica is oversized, so we estimate that the printed book will be at least 10” x 14”. Published and funded by the Herstal Group (FN Herstal), the book will be released in two editions, a French and English version.
The authors, Auguste Francotte, Claude Gaier, and Robert Karlshausen, have done a magnificent job representing all facets of FN's history, including its factories and affiliates such as Winchester and Browning. Many will recognize Mr. Claude Gaier, the well-known arms expert and curator of the Liège Arms Museum. His excellent book, Five Centuries of Liège Gunmaking, is still in high demand today, but sadly is out of print and no longer available in English.
There has been a limited printing of the English language version. FN has not indicated whether it will entertain follow-up orders in the future. Thus, the English language edition may be available for a limited time and in limited quantities.
Ars Mechanica, The Ultimate FN Book, will be the pride of one's firearms reference library. It certainly is for this avid weapon's book collector.
This product was added to our catalog on Tuesday 09 June, 2015.