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"I'm strictly an ivory-tower person. I can explain things but I can't do things."
- Isaac Asimov

Wire Gun  
  Shoots a length of constricting wire.  

In Taro's hand was a small cylinder. A coiled wire sprang, from it, struck Johnny's chest, and, uncoiling, wrapped itself around him, pinning his arms. And in another second Taro fired again. Another wire struck his knees. Lashed them. And Taro, pouncing, lifted and flung him. Helpless, all in those few seconds, bound by the tightening wire into an inert bundle, Johnny's body sailed backward across the grotto.
From Shadow Gold, by Ray Cummings.
Published by Thrilling Wonder Stories in 1936
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