An article I did for Last Movie Outpost. If you will forgive me, it was written for a different audience. I know all of you know the history of these things and will minge in the comments about it. Just keep in mind the : gun guy ” audience was not the intended readers for this over at the other website. Enjoy looking at Stu’s pictures though and you can follow Stewart on instagram as ” thevintage1911″

When I was young, Miami Vice was a BIG deal. Especially for shooters. The show was an endless display of new, old and cutting edge firearms of the time. To add to that, real attention to detail was paid to how use them properly in the show. This is a pretty big deal if you are interested in firearms and how to use them. It’s still rare to see today.

Don Johnson’s character in Miami Vice, Sonny Crockett, used the coolest sidearms on the show without doubt. His main weapon being his Dornaus & Dixon Bren 10.  It’s hard to explain why this handgun was and is so special to non-gun people.

It fired a very powerful round for a semi-auto pistol at the time. A special round cooked up by a famous gun writer and trainer. The company made these to fire the new round, the 10mm Auto. Once people like me and my friends saw it on the show, sales went through the roof.


Unfortunately the company that made the handguns had trouble with supplying magazines for the guns. A semi-auto without a magazine is a single shot. Things got away from Dornaus & Dixon, and the company went tits up. It’s a long story that most of you won’t care about. Even today, the magazines for a Bren 10 are harder to find than the already super rare handgun itself.

Once again, my friend Stewart provides pictures of his Bren 10s. The kind carried by Sonny, along with the should holster used by Don Johnson. The shoulder holster is still made by Galco and it is known as the “Miami Classic” because of Sonny’s use of it in the show.


Sonny also famously carried a back up pistol on his ankle.


The small Detonics Combat Master in .45 ACP. My friend Jason was also a big fan of the show. He offers up pictures of his Detonics for you enjoyment. If you want one of these two pistols I got some bad news. Both companies are long gone and neither is still made. As you can imagine, the price for both on the used market reflects that.  But you can always live vicariously through the collection of me and my friends!


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  1. LSWCHP says:

    A great show.That scene where Zubiena Mozambique’s the Muppet (after blowing up the car with the shotgun) is an all time favourite. I’ve watched it hundreds of times.


    1. Shawn says:

      yeah i think that may be the best part of the entire series


  2. Mark Winkler says:

    I love my Detonics (Detonics USA version). It has one of the best triggers on my 1911s – as good as my 1986 Colt Gold Cup, and I shoot it better than anything I own. I got a Miami Vice ankle holster from vintage gun leather, and while it works, a Detonics is way too heavy for ankle carry. However it works fine with a Walther PPK – thanks for the article


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