What is the difference between a clone and a replica?

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My understanding is that a clone is either a complete copy or nearly a complete copy, either authorized or not authorized, with most of the parts being interchangeable. A good example of a clone would be the new Springfield SA35 Highpower. Where as a replica can be something that looks like the original, whether functioning or non- functioning. An example would be the Ruger Vaqueros, where they look like a Colt S/A but no parts are interchangeable and are not meant to be a copy, they only replicate the appearance. What say you?
Good answer no more explanation needed.
 

Rclark

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I too like the above definiton of clone vs replica. Clone means to me parts interchange. I have replicas (not clones) of the Colt SAA... It looks good, but... oh look it has a floating firing pin, and missing the safety notch on the hammer, and etc .... We all have our way of looking at things :) .
 

noahmercy

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I use the term "exact copy" when discussing something that is indistinguishable from an original and has parts interchangeability, and "modern version" if it is similar to an original, but lacks parts reciprocity or has new features. However, if someone uses "clone" or "replica", I can often infer what they are saying by context or by simply asking a question or two. While I get uptight about a few mangled terms ("bullet heads" is a personal peeve), I generally don't get too bent out of shape when someone uses a word that can be properly employed in several ways.
 

Ruger 10/22

Bearcat
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My Taurus 85 is a Replica of a J Frame S&W = Not a Clone even though? NOT a RUGER...
HaHaHa 🎸
Taurus 85CH Ammo

Admire the Brazilian Snubby & all its $300 worth of protection in todays marketplace, At least it's blued & not painted
 

nvbirdman

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Clone has five letters, replica has seven, otherwise there's very little difference.
 

Dillon Justice

Bearcat
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My Taurus 85 is a Replica of a J Frame S&W = Not a Clone even though? NOT a RUGER...
HaHaHa 🎸View attachment 2585
Admire the Brazilian Snubby & all its $300 worth of protection in todays marketplace, At least it's blued & not painted
It looks like it has a very nice blued finish. I had a Taurus 85 Poly that I gifted to someone that couldn't afford to buy herself a pistol. I was surprised that for a budget gun, it was of descent quality. I also inherited a Rossi 357 that was Taurus owned. Also a nice gun for the price. My sister wanted it, so I gave it to her.
 

Dillon Justice

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Merriam-Webster Thesaurus

Synonyms of clone

something that is made to look exactly like something else
  • the car is a clone under a different brand name—it's even manufactured in the same plant as its cousin
Synonyms for clone

There are, of course, biological clones

Clone:
noun
  • 1. an organism or cell, or group of organisms or cells, produced asexually from one ancestor or stock, to which they are genetically identical.
verb
  • 1. propagate (an organism or cell) as a clone: "of the hundreds of new plants cloned the best ones are selected"


rep·li·ca
/ˈrepləkə/

noun
  • 1. an exact copy or model of something, especially one on a smaller scale: "a replica of the Empire State Building"
Webster's dictionary defines clip as:

clip
noun (1)
Definition of clip (Entry 2 of 4)
1:
any of various devices that grip, clasp, or hook
2: a device to hold cartridges for charging the magazines of some riflesalso : a magazine from which ammunition is fed into the chamber of a firearm
3: something (such as a piece of jewelry) that is worn as an ornament or fastener and that is held in position by a clip

Most gun people would probably disagree that a clip is a magazine ,even though the dictionary says it is. However I don't care when people use them incorrectly, I know what they meant from the context.
 
Last edited:

larry1096

Bearcat
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In the guitar world, the difference is fairly well defined:
Clone: A guitar with the basic shape and features of a model made famous by another manufacturer, but branded with the name and logo of the company making the clone
Replica: A guitar made to replicate a model by another manufacturer *exactly*, including using the name, trade dress and other IP of the original manufacturer.

As a general rule, clones are not particularly frowned upon, where replicas (also called 'counterfeits') definitely are.

Larry
 

Bob Wright

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Word definitions also differ with the realm in which they are used. In my field, column was called a "colyum", and steel angles were "angle irons." The original meaning of clone was of biological/medical usage. And, calling a firearm a "clone" just seems too "preppy" to me. Same as "wheelgun, bottom feeder, bang switch," and similar terms.

So, I'm an old stick-in the-mud.

Bob Wright
 

Bob Wright

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As to the word "clip," when I was in the Army, the 30 round magazine for the M-2 Carbine was referred to as a "banana clip." And the pouch worn on the pistol belt was a "clip pouch."

Bob Wright
 

Dillon Justice

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As to the word "clip," when I was in the Army, the 30 round magazine for the M-2 Carbine was referred to as a "banana clip." And the pouch worn on the pistol belt was a "clip pouch."

Bob Wright
I've always wondered why gun gurus balk when the word clip was used referring to a magazine, but Banana Clip was an acceptable term? Also, I've heard the term clone used for decades referring to guns, cars, etc. Never thought that it was first used originally for a biological/medical meaning. Learn something new every day. Also I'm in my 60's, but I try to keep my stick out of the mud. LOL
 

Biggfoot44

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There was some overlap of ownership groups in the Bangor Punta era , and no doubt some flowing of technical/ manufacturing advice . But Taraus has always had different internals than S&W despite external similarity .

Perhaps you were thinking of the relationship between Taraus and Beretta ?

Taraus had Beretta supplied machinery , building exact licensed 1st gen M92 . After the end of the Brazilian Mil contract , Taraus ended up with the machinery .

Subsequently the M92 evolved both in Italy and Brazil , in slightly different directions .
 

Dillon Justice

Bearcat
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There was some overlap of ownership groups in the Bangor Punta era , and no doubt some flowing of technical/ manufacturing advice . But Taraus has always had different internals than S&W despite external similarity .

Perhaps you were thinking of the relationship between Taraus and Beretta ?

Taraus had Beretta supplied machinery , building exact licensed 1st gen M92 . After the end of the Brazilian Mil contract , Taraus ended up with the machinery .

Subsequently the M92 evolved both in Italy and Brazil , in slightly different directions .
Didn't know that.
 

Ruger 10/22

Bearcat
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Mar 23, 2022
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Arn't Taurus's made on old S & W machines in South America?
S&W & Taurus were once owned by the same Mother company Bangor Punta & some of the designs were shared BUT there isn't one part of the Model 85 that is the same as the J frame S&W, even though they share the same holster & speed loader that's about it, = Same Size Too!!
Mine is a fine revolver but they aren't made to the same quality as the J Frame S&W
Mine is a $300 revolver were as the M36 would sell for $600+ in todays market
 

Ride1949

Single-Sixer
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Dec 4, 2021
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186
My wife has carried a Taurus 85CH for over 16 years. I bought my 850CIA 10 years ago. Never a problem of any kind with either gun. Still tight and as accurate as can be expected for a 2 inch snubby.
 

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