Embattled Importer AWA closes


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Josey
July 6, 2004, 10:11 PM
After much speculation and rumours, American Western Arms is out of business. Russell Simpson says his company R&R will seek to produce AWA products under a new name. He says that he will provide free labour ONLY on repairs and warranty work. NO SHIPPING OR PARTS. If you have questions, the phone is already disconnected. AWA produced the CAS Peacekeeper, Longhorn and Lightning pump action rifles. I have sources who say that refunds will be forthcoming on unfulfilled orders. No timeline on when.

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Wildalaska
July 6, 2004, 10:31 PM
Gol darn I thought it was Colt, with their high priced SAAa and their inability to read the market place that was gonna close :)

Anyway, anybody one one or two fo the guns before I raise prices

WildgetemwhjiletheyarestillavailableAlaska

mainmech48
July 7, 2004, 04:23 PM
Very sorry to hear that, Josey. Looks as if the Euro Trash at FN took a page from Social Nazis' Playbook: If you can't beat 'em with merit, strangle 'em with lawyers. At least they used the depth of their own pockets to do it, instead of siphoning the money out of the public trough like the other "antis". It'll be interesting to see if they'll try and use the same sort of tactics to squeeze "royalties" and "licensing fees" out of the makers of GM and AR clones now. Patents on those have expired too, but they still have that "proprietary look" that the AWA SAAs had.

Hope that somebody else picks up the rights to the "Lightning" replicas. I was deep into the process of saving up for one :-((

Owen
July 7, 2004, 04:25 PM
what's FN have to do with it?

Owen

Josey
July 7, 2004, 06:47 PM
Taurus is bringing out their version of the Lightning at +/- $450.00. USFA has produced a Lightning. AWA just couldn't get a quality product to their customers. Colt did sue them. AWA had a 1911, a SAA and a pump action rifle clone on the market when the suit was filed. The suit has been settled. That didn't have much to do with the closing. The settlement was on AWAs terms. I haven't the slightest clue as to where FN might figure in.

mainmech48
July 8, 2004, 04:23 PM
My bad; Apologies! Due to a massive brain fart, and knee-jerk indignation, I seem to have confused USFM with USRA, which IS owned by FN/Herstal-GIAT.

I still find the tactics repulsive, no matter who's applying them. Once a patent expires it's pretty tacky to try and fall back on a claim of "proprietary appearance" in an attempt to force your competition to be less competitive.

IIRC, the essential claim made by Colt was that, due to AWA's c $695 product having closely comparable levels of fit, finish, and function to their $1200 product consumers would ignore all of the markings to the contrary and think it was "their" product. An extremely specious argument and basically an admission that all that the consumer was getting for the extra cash was a trademark.

IMO, the additional resources that AWA had to allocate to defend itself from this bogus litigation had to be some large factor in their collapse, even though they eventually "won". Colt's deeper pockets allowed the plaintiff to accomplish their true objective of eliminating a competitor, regardless of the judge's decision.

While it may all be as technically "legal" as church on Sunday, it still stinks enough to gag a vulture.

Again IMO, Colt lost whatever "magic" their trademark may once have had through their own arrogant refusal to maintain and refine the quality of manufacturing which originally built it. Even when it had become obvious that the Colt name alone no longer held enough panache for consumers to rationalize paying more for lesser quality just to have it, they merely stuck their heads further into the sand and kept churning out expensive mediocrity. As long as they could rely on their exclusive military contracts to generate their bread and butter, they couldn't be bothered to commit any capital to upgrading the manufacturing facilities for their civilian products.

I'm sorry, but the mystique is long gone. I have reason to doubt that Colt's management "gets" that, even now. Not long ago, John Taffin did a piece on a couple of the "new" Colts one of which was a repro of a "Flattop" target in 32/20 from their Custom Shop. No offense to Mr. Taffin, but blythely glossing over a crumby trigger and a front sight several degrees past vertical on a "custom" product costing upwards of two grand because it's so "authentic" and pretty isn't something that you'd excuse so easily from Linebaugh or Hamilton Bowen. Cutting Colt that much slack smacks of the kind of pandering we see entirely too much of in the magazine trade.

Wildalaska
July 8, 2004, 04:43 PM
Again IMO, Colt lost whatever "magic" their trademark may once have had through their own arrogant refusal to maintain and refine the quality of manufacturing which originally built it. Even when it had become obvious that the Colt name alone no longer held enough panache for consumers to rationalize paying more for lesser quality just to have it, they merely stuck their heads further into the sand and kept churning out expensive mediocrity. .

Bwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahahahahahahahahaha:D

WildanotherguywhocantaffordoneAlaska

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