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May 4th, 2024

Saturday Movies: RCBS Tool Videos (Hodgdon Now Owns RCBS)

RCBS Vista Outdoor Hodgdon powder video showcase press powder measure tools

There was huge news in the reloading world this week. Hodgdon Powder Company (Hodgdon) has acquired RCBS from Revelyst, a division of of Vista Outdoor (VSTO). Most operations of RCBS will remain in Oroville, California for now, and the full product line will stay in production — presses, dies, powder measures, case prep tools, priming tools, scales and more. But this is still big news, with a leading reloading gear maker being acquired by a leading powder maker/distributor.

Today’s Saturday Showcase feature some of the most popular and noteworthy RCBS products including single-stage, turret, and progressive presses, plus powder dispensers and other tools.

RCBS ChargeMaster Link Scale/Dispenser with Bluetooth

Having a modern, electronic powder scale/dispenser makes the hand-loading process vastly more efficient. The latest generation of powder dispensers are very accurate, and they can store charge settings for multiple cartridge types. The latest RCBS ChargeMaster Link dispenser has a modern interface, plus Bluetooth technology that “talks” to a handy App on your mobile device. This is available now for $299.99 at Cabelas.com.

RCBS Combo Kit — Good Choice for Getting Started in Reloading

RCBS Vista Outdoor Hodgdon powder video showcase press powder measure toolsYou can definitely save money by buying multiple reloading gear items in one combo package. RCBS offers a variety of Reloading Combo Kits which feature reloading press, powder measure, scale, priming tool, and other items. These range in price from $265-$620 on Amazon. This video reviews an RCBS Rebel Master Kit. This is a very complete starter set-up, sold for $499.99 at Midsouth.

Along with the press, we like many of the components in the Rebel Master combo kit. The powder measure works well as does the trickler, and the hand primer tool is reliable, with good feeding and plenty of leverage.

RCBS Partner Press

We think all serious reloaders should have a small, secondary single-stage press for repetitive tasks such as decapping primers. In addition, a small, compact press can be transported easily to the range. Load development can be done more efficiently when loading at the range, as you can easily modify seating depth and other variables. The RCBS Partner Press (#ad) is a great choice for a secondary press. This UltimateReloader video shows the key features of the Partner Press.

RCBS 6-Station Turret Press — Operation Tips

This editor has owned and used an RCBS Turret Press for over two decades. While certainly not as versatile/sophisticated as the Area 419 XERO turret press, this six-station RCBS press does its job handily. It is a good choice if you load multiple pistol cartridges. With six stations, you can install both a sizing and a seating die for three different cartridge types, such as 9mm Luger, .357 Magnum, and .45 ACP.

RCBS Brass Boss Case Prep Center

The RCBS Boss is a powered case prep center that performs multiple tasks efficiently. Priced at $198.99 on Amazon (#ad), the RCBS Boss boasts six variable, high-speed rotating stations (four at <350 RPM; two at <550 RPM). This unit is great for initial case prep (chamfering/deburring) and regular brass maintenance.

RCBS Summit — Set-UP and Field installation on Vehicle


The RCBS Summit Press (#ad) is a very unique, small footprint press that operates differently than most reloading presses. The cast-iron Summit has a large-diameter center column and die moves up and down to meet the cartridge. With this small footprint, the Summit can be used in the field. As you can see in the second video, one of our testers actually mounted a Summit Press on his vehicle (with a special pedestal) so he could load anywhere.

RCBS Bench-mount Priming Tool (Two Short Videos)

If you need to prime large numbers of cases, the RCBS bench-mount Auto Priming Tool can do so efficiently at a modest cost (currently $155.09 on Amazon #ad). It attaches to your bench so it is secure and stable. A vertical tube holds dozens of primers that feed into the pusher as you can see in these videos. Older guys who experience pain when gripping hand primer tools have praised this bench-mounted RCBS unit.

Choosing a Case Cleaning System

Here Kent Sakamoto of RCBS looks at the three main types of brass cleaning systems: Vibratory Tumbler, Wet Tumbler (with media), and Ultrasonic Cleaning Machine. Kent reviews the pros and cons of each system. Most gun owners can benefit by having an ultrasonic machine for parts cleaning as well as a tumbler for cleaning fired brass.

As an Amazon affiliate, this site can earn revenues through sales commissions.

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May 2nd, 2024

Major News — Hodgdon Acquires RCBS from Vista Outdoor

hodgdon powder company buys acquired RCBS from Vista Outdoor Revelyst

Here is big news for reloaders. RCBS, one of the leading producers of dies, reloading gear, case prep tools, powder dispensers, and reloading presses, has been acquired by Hodgdon Powder Company. RCBS has been operated by Revelyst, a division of of Vista Outdoor (VSTO). (SEE Revelyst Report on Yahoo Finance.) Here is the text from the official press release announcing the acquisition:

Hodgdon Powder Company Acquires RCBS Reloading
May 02, 2024
Hodgdon Powder Company is pleased to announce the acquisition of RCBS Reloading from Revelyst, a segment of Vista Outdoor (NYSE: VSTO). This acquisition is effective May 2, 2024, with Hodgdon prepared to immediately continue shipping RCBS products to wholesale and retail customers.

“This acquisition of RCBS, the leading brand in metallic reloading tools, is a perfect complement to our portfolio of smokeless powder brands for our handloading customers,” said Steve Kehrwald, president and CEO of Hodgdon Powder Company. With our world-class ballistics labs, we look forward to providing even more load data to our new RCBS customers.”

Hodgdon is thrilled to add the RCBS facility in Oroville, CA to our company-owned facilities in Shawnee, KS, Herington, KS and Miles City, MT. The addition of the RCBS team will more than double the headcount at the Hodgdon Powder Company and greatly expands the company’s manufacturing capabilities.

“For years, our friends have referred to the Hodgdon family and company as ‘The Gunpowder People’ and this acquisition further demonstrates our dedication to the handloader,” said J.B. Hodgdon, co-owner with his late brother Bob, of the Hodgdon Powder Company. “Our dad Bruce partnered with Fred Huntington from RCBS to conduct Reloading Roadshow events in the 1950s and 1960s. I believe they both are looking down today, proud to have our two great brands together in 2024.”

Comment from Vista Outdoor/Revelyst
“For more than 80 years, RCBS has demonstrated their manufacturing, innovation and operational excellence,” Said Eric Nyman, Co-CEO of Vista Outdoor and CEO of Revelyst. “We are thrilled for RCBS and their new ownership with Hodgdon Powder. This transaction joins two iconic brands, and it ensures that RCBS is positioned for success in the next chapter of its history.”

hodgdon powder company buys acquired RCBS from Vista Outdoor Revelyst

Hodgdon sent a letter today to its customers. In the letter, Hodgdon Sales V.P. Shawn Kelley states: “Hodgon Powder Company announced earlier this morning that we acquired RCBS from Vista Outdoor, effective immediately.” Shown above is the letter sent to customers.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Gear Review, News, Reloading 2 Comments »
December 9th, 2023

Vista Outdoor Announces Ammo, Powder, Primers Price Hikes

Vista outdoor alliant remington cci federal speer ammo ammunition primers price increase inflation hike

Vista Outdoor has announced that it will be raising prices on ammunition, primers, and powder starting January 1, 2024. Last week, the Minnesota-based company sent a letter to commercial customers revealing across-the-board cost increases for ammunition, primers, and powder starting the first of the year. The price increases will range from one percent to ten percent, with projected 5% price hikes for primers. CCI/Federal/Remington .22 LR rimfire ammo will rise 1-5% while rifle ammo goes up 1-7%.

“Due to world events our suppliers have notified us of unprecedented demand for and an anticipated global shortage of gunpowder, and thus has increased our prices substantially,” Vice President of Sales, Sporting Products Brett Nelson said in the letter. “We must therefore raise our pricing to help offset those increases.”

Vista Outdoor Sporting Group entities that will increase prices include Alliant Powder, CCI, Federal, Remington, Speer, and HEVI-Shot. The projected increases are shown at right.

Projected Price Increases:

Primers: 5%
Alliant Powder: 10%
.22 LR/.22 Short: 1-5%
.22 WMR/HMR: 1-7%
Rifle Ammo: 1-7%
Handgun Ammo: 1-5%
Shotshells: 1-7%

Vista outdoor alliant remington cci federal speer ammo ammunition primers price increase inflation hike

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October 17th, 2023

Czech Group Plans to Acquire Federal, CCI, Remington Ammo, Speer, HEVI-Shot from Vista Outdoor

vista outdoor remington speer federal cci factory ammunition business sale csg Czechoslovak group acquisition

Big news for the shooting world — Vista Outdoor (NYSE:VSTO) is planning on selling its outdoor sporting products business to Czechoslovak Group A.S. (“CSG”) for $1.91 billion. This will involve transfer of some of the biggest names in the shooting/reloading world including: Federal, CCI, Remington Ammo, Speer, and Hevi-Shot. The sale and take-over is expected to be completed in 2024. We believe Alliant Powder will also be sold but that was not mentioned in the news release.

This represents a big change for the United States. Soon America’s largest commercial powder and ammunition manufacturer will be controlled by a European enterprise. CSG had previously acquired Fiocchi in 2022, and soon it will hold a very large segment of the total global ammunition market with the $1.91 billion deal to take over Vista Outdoor’s ammunition enterprises. READ Official Transaction Report.

vista outdoor remington speer federal cci factory ammunition business sale csg Czechoslovak group acquisition

Vista Outdoor’s current Sporting Products CEO Jason Vanderbrink will continue to lead the Sporting Products business and the U.S. headquarters will remain in Anoka, Minnesota. Vanderbrink stated: “We are confident that CSG is a great home for our leading ammunition brands. The company is fully committed to our iconic American brands and expanding our legacy of U.S. manufacturing, support for military and law enforcement customers, and investments in conservation and our hunting and shooting heritage.”

We are told that the approximately 4,000 Vista Outdoor employees now employed at four American factories will continue to work at those facilities to produce CCI, Federal, HEVI-Shot, Remington, and Speer products. According to SGB Media: “To effect the transaction, Vista Outdoor will separate its Outdoor Products business from its Sporting Products business, and CSG will merge one of its subsidiaries with Vista Outdoor (holding only the Sporting Products business), with current public stockholders of Vista Outdoor receiving shares of Outdoor Products … and approximately $750 million in cash in the aggregate. The transaction will be treated as a taxable sale of a stockholder’s Vista Outdoor shares for the Outdoor Products shares and cash consideration they receive in the merger, allowing stockholders to recover tax basis and recognize built-in gain and loss in their Vista Outdoor shares.”

David Štěpán, Member of the CSG Board and Investment Director for CSG International Projects, stated: “Vista Outdoor’s Sporting Products business is vertically integrated, has excellent financial results and is well invested. Thanks to this acquisition, CSG will become one of the most important ammunition manufacturers in the world with a comprehensive portfolio across all calibers.”

According to the Business Wire: “The proposed transaction would be CSG’s largest acquisition to date after a long series of smaller acquisitions focused on the European market, including the acquisition of Fiocchi Munizioni in 2022. It also represents the largest acquisition in the history of the Czech defense industry. The transaction is expected to close in calendar year 2024, subject to shareholder approval, receipt of necessary regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. Upon closing, Sporting Products will become a wholly owned subsidiary of CSG, operating as a private company. Jason Vanderbrink will remain CEO of the Sporting Products business and the U.S. headquarters will remain in Anoka, Minnesota.”

About Czechoslovak Group
Czechoslovak Group (CSG) is an international industrial technology holding company building on the tradition of the Czech and Slovak industry, owned by Michal Strnad. CSG supports the development of Czech and Slovak companies engaged in defense and civil industrial production and trade. More than 10,000 people are employed by CSG companies and affiliates. In 2022, the holding’s consolidated revenues reached 25 billion CZK. CSG operates across five strategic business segments covering aerospace, ammunition, defense, mobility and business projects.

About Vista Outdoor Inc.
Vista Outdoor (NYSE: VSTO) is the parent company of more than three dozen renowned brands that design, manufacture and market sporting and outdoor products. Brands include Bushnell, CamelBak, Bushnell Golf, Foresight Sports, Fox Racing, Bell Helmets, Camp Chef, Giro, Simms Fishing, QuietKat, Stone Glacier, Federal Ammunition, Remington Ammunition and more. Our reporting segments, Outdoor Products and Sporting Products, provide consumers with a wide range of performance-driven, high-quality and innovative outdoor and sporting products. For more information, visit www.VistaOutdoor.com.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, News, Reloading 3 Comments »
September 23rd, 2023

Saturday Movies: Bullets, Powder, and Ammo Made at Berger, Vihtavuori, Remington, Norma, Federal, and Hornady Factories

ammunition ammo production video movies berger norma vihtavuori federal hornady bullet

Ever wondered how factory ammunition is produced, from start to finish? How are brass cases made, how are bullets created, and how are finished cartridges produced on automated assembly lines? Today’s video showcase features six major factories that, collectively, produce bullets, powder, and finished ammo. We start with the Berger Bullet plant, follow by Vihtavuori powder production in Europe. Then we show the Remington (now Vista Outdoor) ammo plant in Utah, along with a Federal plant that produces rimfire ammunition. Last but not least, there’s an excellent, very informative video from the Norma ammo factory, plus a Hornady ammo plant video.

hornady factory video tour
Bullets being seating at Hornady ammo factory.

Berger Bullets Factory Tour — Made in USA

In this video, Recoil TV takes a behind-the-scenes look at Berger Bullets, and how the outstanding, match-winning Berger bullets are created. The video covers the entire process — from raw materials, to the placement of bullet cores inside jackets, to the final ultra-consistent and uniform projectiles. To see the complete line of Berger Bullets, with full Ballistic data, visit BergerBullets.com

Vihtavuori Powder Production in Europe

ammunition ammo production video movies berger norma vihtavuori federal hornady bullet Vihtavuori produces some of the most consistent, high-quality powder on the planet. Vihtavuori powders have been used to set world records and win countless championships in multiple disciplines. This excellent video goes inside Vihtavuori’s European production centers. It is really fascinating — you see how extruded powder starts with long spaghetti-like strings, before being finalized into the tiny sticks that we load.

Along with the powder production process, this video includes the entire VV production line, so you see how powder bottles are filled with powder and the tops of the bottles are secured by automated machines.

Remington Ammo Factory (Now Operated by Vista Outdoor)

This SHWATteam video visits the Remington ammunition plant in Arkansas. Vista Outdoor, the company that produces Federal, Speer and CCI ammo, purchased Remington’s ammunition business in Lonoke, Arkansas. Including the new high-tech plant in the back, this facility has the equivalent of 13+ football fields (1200 acres) under roof at its ammo plant, with over 1100 employees. Production capacity is impressive. When running at maximum output, this Remington ammo plant can crank out a staggering 7,000,000+ rounds every day. To produce that volume of ammunition, the facility needs a huge amount of resources: one million pounds of copper per month and 124,000 pounds of lead per day. Remington started manufacturing ammunition at this Lonoke facility in 1970, but some of the machines have been churning out ammo since long before.

Norma Factory Tour

Guys — honestly, if you do anything today on this site, watch this video. You won’t be disappointed. Guaranteed. This is a very informative (and surprisingly entertaining) video. Every serious hand-loader should watch this video to see how cartridge cases are made. The camera work and editing are excellent — there are many close-ups revealing key processes such as annealing and head-stamping.

VERY Informative Video Show Cartridge Brass and Ammunition Production:

Norma has released a fascinating video showing how bullets, brass, and ammunition are produced at the Norma Precision AB factory which opened in 1902. You can see how cartridges are made starting with brass disks, then formed into shape through a series of processes, including “hitting [the cup] with a 30-ton hammer”. After annealing (shown at 0:08″), samples from every batch of brass are analyzed to check metal grain structure and hardness. Before packing, each case is visually inspected by a human being (3:27″ time-mark).

Federal Rimfire Ammunition Production

Field & Stream Tours Federal Ammo Plant in Minnesota
A reporter for Field & Stream recently got a chance to tour the Federal ammunition production facility in Anoka, Minnesota. This large plant produces both rimfire and centerfire ammunition. While touring the plant, the reporter was allowed to capture video showing the creation of .22 LR rounds from start to finish. This is a fascinating video, well worth watching. Watch and learn how rimfire ammo is made.

Note to Viewers — After Starting Video, Click Speaker Icon to HEAR audio!

This revealing video shows all phases of .22 LR ammo production including cupping, drawing, annealing, washing, drying, head-stamping, priming, powder charging, bullet seating, crimping, waxing, inspection, and final packaging. We recommend you watch the video from start to finish. You’ll definitely learn some new things about rimfire ammo.

Hornady Ammunition Factory

Hornady ManufacturingIf you wonder how ammo is made, starting with raw metal, check out this video from Hornady. It shows how bullet jackets are formed from copper, followed by insertion of a lead core. The jacket is then closed up over the core with the bullet taking its final shape in a die (a cannelure is applied on some bullet types). Next the video shows how cartridge brass is formed, starting with small cups of brass. The last part of the video shows how cases are primed and filled with powder, and how bullets are seated into the cases, using an automated process on a giant assembly-line.

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August 11th, 2023

Vista Outdoor Sporting Products Will Become The Kinetic Group

The kinetic group cci speer remington federal ammo ammunition primers

The ammunition and reloading component producing divisions of Vista Outdoor will become a new separate company under the name “The Kenetic Group” with NYSE ticker symbol “HUNT”. The Kinetic Group enterprise will make and sell CCI, Federal, Remington (ammunition), Speer, and Hevi-Shot products. The establishment of The Kinetic Group will follow the planned spin-off of Vista Outdoor’s Outdoor Products operations. The Kinetic Group will continue Vista Outdoor’s Sporting Products sales and manufacturing.

Vista Outdoor Inc. (NYSE: VSTO), the parent company of 41 brands that design, manufacture and market sporting and outdoor lifestyle products worldwide, has announced its new name and identity that will be effective following the planned spinoff of Vista Outdoor’s Outdoor Products business.

“The Kinetic Group will be our name moving forward after the separation…” stated Sporting Products President and CEO Jason Vanderbrink. “To hunters and shooters, their favorite brand of ammunition will take center stage as it always has — they’ll look for CCI, Federal, HEVI-Shot, Remington, and Speer on the shelf, at events and online.”

Vista Outdoor will become The Kinetic Group, a name that represents the energy behind the company and its leading ammunition brands. The Kinetic Group will trade on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSO) under the stock ticker “HUNT”, and the brand will feature a North American ram logo. Sporting Products leaders unveiled The Kinetic Group’s branding this week at the CCI-Speer ammunition factory in Lewiston, Idaho.

The kinetic group cci speer remington federal ammo ammunition primers
The kinetic group cci speer remington federal ammo ammunition primers

“The performance of our products is so often measured in energy on target. Kinetic energy is the force behind our world-class brands and exhibits the spirit of the 4,500 American workers who represent our company,” said Vanderbrink, who will be a director on The Kinetic Group’s board of directors post-spin. Joining Vanderbrink on The Kinetic Group’s leadership team are Andy Keegan (CFO) and Jeff Ehrich (General Counsel and Corporate Secretary). Gary McArthur will continue as interim CEO of Vista Outdoor until the completion of the spinoff.

On the new TheKineticGroup.com website, the company explained its company mission:

“Energy is what propels us and inspires us. It defines our products, drives our purpose, and champions our freedoms. Our brands and products give us the ability to unlock freedom, harvest game, protect us, and unite us. Our thirst and our passion to capture and build upon this energy is never extinguished. We are America’s ammunition. We are The Kinetic Group.”

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June 11th, 2022

Saturday at the Movies: Inside Berger, Vihtavuori, Remington, Norma, Federal, and Hornady Factories

ammunition ammo production video movies berger norma vihtavuori federal hornady bullet

Ever wondered how factory ammunition is produced, from start to finish? How are brass cases made, how are bullets created, and how are finished cartridges produced on automated assembly lines? Today’s video showcase features six major factories that, collectively, produce bullets, powder, and finished ammo. We start with the Berger Bullet plant, follow by Vihtavuori powder production in Europe. Then we show the Remington (now Vista Outdoor) ammo plant in Utah, along with a Federal plant that produces rimfire ammunition. Last but not least, there’s an excellent, very informative video from the Norma ammo factory, plus a Hornady ammo plant video.

hornady factory video tour
Bullets being seating at Hornady ammo factory.

Berger Bullets Factory Tour — Made in USA

In this video, Recoil TV takes a behind-the-scenes look at Berger Bullets, and how the outstanding, match-winning Berger bullets are created. The video covers the entire process — from raw materials, to the placement of bullet cores inside jackets, to the final ultra-consistent and uniform projectiles. To see the complete line of Berger Bullets, with full Ballistic data, visit BergerBullets.com

Vihtavuori Powder Production in Europe

ammunition ammo production video movies berger norma vihtavuori federal hornady bullet Vihtavuori produces some of the most consistent, high-quality powder on the planet. Vihtavuori powders have been used to set world records and win countless championships in multiple disciplines. This excellent video goes inside Vihtavuori’s European production centers. It is really fascinating — you see how extruded powder starts with long spaghetti-like strings, before being finalized into the tiny sticks that we load.

Along with the powder production process, this video includes the entire VV production line, so you see how powder bottles are filled with powder and the tops of the bottles are secured by automated machines.

Remington Ammo Factory (Now Operated by Vista Outdoor)

This SHWATteam video visits the Remington ammunition plant in Arkansas. Vista Outdoor, the company that produces Federal, Speer and CCI ammo, purchased Remington’s ammunition business in Lonoke, Arkansas. Including the new high-tech plant in the back, this facility has the equivalent of 13+ football fields (1200 acres) under roof at its ammo plant, with over 1100 employees. Production capacity is impressive. When running at maximum output, this Remington ammo plant can crank out a staggering 7,000,000+ rounds every day. To produce that volume of ammunition, the facility needs a huge amount of resources: one million pounds of copper per month and 124,000 pounds of lead per day. Remington started manufacturing ammunition at this Lonoke facility in 1970, but some of the machines have been churning out ammo since long before.

Norma Factory Tour

Guys — honestly, if you do anything today on this site, watch this video. You won’t be disappointed. Guaranteed. This is a very informative (and surprisingly entertaining) video. Every serious hand-loader should watch this video to see how cartridge cases are made. The camera work and editing are excellent — there are many close-ups revealing key processes such as annealing and head-stamping.

VERY Informative Video Show Cartridge Brass and Ammunition Production:

Norma has released a fascinating video showing how bullets, brass, and ammunition are produced at the Norma Precision AB factory which opened in 1902. You can see how cartridges are made starting with brass disks, then formed into shape through a series of processes, including “hitting [the cup] with a 30-ton hammer”. After annealing (shown at 0:08″), samples from every batch of brass are analyzed to check metal grain structure and hardness. Before packing, each case is visually inspected by a human being (3:27″ time-mark).

Federal Rimfire Ammunition Production

Field & Stream Tours Federal Ammo Plant in Minnesota
A reporter for Field & Stream recently got a chance to tour the Federal ammunition production facility in Anoka, Minnesota. This large plant produces both rimfire and centerfire ammunition. While touring the plant, the reporter was allowed to capture video showing the creation of .22 LR rounds from start to finish. This is a fascinating video, well worth watching. Watch and learn how rimfire ammo is made.

Note to Viewers — After Starting Video, Click Speaker Icon to HEAR audio!

This revealing video shows all phases of .22 LR ammo production including cupping, drawing, annealing, washing, drying, head-stamping, priming, powder charging, bullet seating, crimping, waxing, inspection, and final packaging. We recommend you watch the video from start to finish. You’ll definitely learn some new things about rimfire ammo.

Hornady Ammunition Factory

Hornady ManufacturingIf you wonder how ammo is made, starting with raw metal, check out this video from Hornady. It shows how bullet jackets are formed from copper, followed by insertion of a lead core. The jacket is then closed up over the core with the bullet taking its final shape in a die (a cannelure is applied on some bullet types). Next the video shows how cartridge brass is formed, starting with small cups of brass. The last part of the video shows how cases are primed and filled with powder, and how bullets are seated into the cases, using an automated process on a giant assembly-line.

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March 17th, 2022

Vista Outdoor Donates 1 Million Ammo Rounds to Ukraine Military

vista outdoor remington federal ukraine ammo ammunition donation one million rounds

To provide support for Ukraine during the current crisis, Vista Outdoor, through its brands Remington, CCI, Speer and Federal Ammunition, will donate one million rounds of ammunition to the Ukraine Armed Forces.

“The war in Ukraine has displaced millions of citizens and exposed average people to the horrors of war”, said Jason Vanderbrink, President of Remington, CCI, Speer and Federal Ammunition. “Supporting the relief effort is a crucial element of the global response and we are proud to do our part. It underscores how critical the Second Amendment is in America and highlights the importance of the ability of American Manufacturers to supply our allies with ammunition. We have long supported Ukrainian armed forces and we will continue to do so in this global cause to unite for democracy.”

Ukraine’s military has been a customer of Federal, CCI and Speer for years and this donation is meant to meet the call from President Zelenskyy for more ammunition.

Special Edition T-Shirts
vista outdoor remington federal ukraine ammo ammunition donation one million roundsField & Stream notes: “On top of the ammo donation, Remington and Federal will sell special edition t-shirts… emblazoned with the Ukrainian colors and President Zelensky’s now-famous quote: ‘I need ammo, not a ride’. The company has pledged all profits from the shirt sales to refugees involved in the crisis through the Ukraine Crisis Relief Fund.” The revenue from the shirts will supplement Vista Outdoor’s ammunition donation.

Even with this large ammunition donation, Vista Outdoor says it will continue to run maximum production to provide other types of loaded ammunition to U.S. shooters and hunters.

Proceeds from the sale of the t-shirts sold on www.remington.com and www.federalpremium.com will go to Ukraine Crisis Relief Fund through the Global Giving program.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, News 1 Comment »
December 14th, 2020

Ammo and Primer Shortage Will Continue into 2021

CCI Vista Outdoor ammunition primer ammo shortage NSSF
Gander Outdoors in Kenosha, WI — reader-submitted photo on GMToday.com

The ammo and primer shortage is real, and it’s here to stay — well into 2021. That’s what industry experts tell us: “With [ammunition] demand far outstripping supply and inventory levels in the channel at all-time lows, we see strong demand continuing[.]” — Christopher Metz, CEO of Vista Outdoor

Certain types of ammunition, 9mm Luger for example, are very difficult to find these days. And what IS available is often marked up 300-400% over 2019 prices. Demand has far exceeded supply. And the ammo shortage won’t end any time soon. Vista Outdoor’s CEO Metz added: “Despite us producing flat-out for six months, there is no buildup of inventory at any of our customers. In fact, every one of them would like significantly more. Simply put, consumer demand continues to outpace our ability to supply.”

2020 2021 ammunition ammo shortage

Ammunition Shortage Impacts Primer Supply
Rifle and pistol primers are nearly sold out everywhere, with some less-than-reputable vendors now charging 4-5 times the normal price. So what’s going on here — why can’t you find primers? One reason is that primer producers such as Federal and CCI are using the vast majority of the primers they make to complete their loaded ammunition, which is flying off the shelves.

CCI Vista Outdoor ammunition primer ammo shortage NSSF

What is causing the ammo panic buying and primer shortage?
There are a number of key reasons:

1. Concerns over the recent election and potential Democratic Party control of U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate, and the White House;
2. General worry and paranoia caused by the COVID-19 pandemic;
3. Fear of new legislation banning guns and restricting ammunition purchases;
4. Social unrest and rioting led by BLM and left-wing activists and tolerated/encouraged by Blue State government officials; and perhaps most importantly,
5. The vast increase in the number of new gun buyers.

Huge Increase in Gun Purchasing in 2020
2020 will probably set an all-time record for gun purchasing in the USA. This spike in gun buying has been propelled by the greatest annual increase in gun ownership in U.S. history. According to data from the NSSF, roughly 6.2 million Americans purchased their first firearm in 2020. A NSSF dealer survey estimates that 40% of all gun sales were conducted to purchasers who have never previously owned a firearm. And women accounted for 40.2% of first-time gun purchases. We’ve never seen that kind of spike in gun ownership in a single year. This is unprecedented.

CCI Vista Outdoor ammunition primer ammo shortage NSSF

Ammo Shortage Will Continue for Many Months, Well into 2021
What are the prospects for greater availabilty of loaded ammo in the months ahead? Not so good according to Vista Outdoor CEO Christopher Metz whose company operates Federal, CCI, RCBS, Alliant, Blazer and many other shooting industry brands. Metz declared: “We currently have over a year’s worth of orders for ammunition.” That value of those back-orders exceeds ONE BILLION dollars. “This is unprecedented for our company. With demand far outstripping supply and inventory levels in the channel at all-time lows, we see strong demand continuing[.]”

There is some good news however — the former Remington ammo factory will start cranking out ammunition again. The American Rifleman reports: “Vista Outdoor has purchased the [Remington Outdoor] ammunition factory in Lonoke, Arkansas [and will resume] production at or near full capacity. The Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette reports 300 employees furloughed by the former owner of the plant will soon be recalled to join nearly 400 still working at the facility.”

Permalink - Articles, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, News 47 Comments »
September 28th, 2020

Remington Assets to Be Divided Among Multiple Companies

Remington Factory Bankruptcy chapter 11

This is a sad story. Remington, America’s oldest continuously-operated gunmaker, has collapsed due to debts and litigation. Through a bankruptcy proceeding, Remington’s product lines and other assets are being acquired by a variety of companies, including Ruger, Vista Outdoor, Sierra, and other large shooting/outdoor industry enterprises. Notably, Ruger will pay $30 million to get the Marlin brand, and Sierra will take over Barnes bullets/ammo business, paying $30.5 million.

The sell-off of Remington assets, specifically product brands, will be going forward through Federal Bankruptcy court, with an order expected Tuesday September 29, 2020. The Shooting Wire reported on 9/28/2020:

Although it won’t be formalized until approved at a hearing scheduled tomorrow (Tuesday, September 29, 2020) in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Alabama, the breakup plan for Remington was filed yesterday. Barring something unforeseen, Remington and its associated companies will be divided among Ruger, Vista Outdoor, Roundhill Group, LLC, Sierra Bullets, Sportsman’s Warehouse, Franklin Armory, and JJE Capital [Palmetto State Armory]. Remington’s Lonoke, Arkansas, ammunition business will go to Vista Outdoor (with SIG Sauer as a backup bid), Sierra Bullets will acquire the Barnes Ammunition interests, Ruger will acquire Marlin, Franklin Armory will assume the Bushmaster brand (and related assets), JJE Capital Holdings will assume DPMS, H&R, Stormlake, AAC, and Parker brands, and Sportsman’s Warehouse will acquire the Tapco brand.

Remington assets will be divided among: Franklin Armory, JJE Capital, Ruger, Roundhill Group, Sierra Bullets, Sportsman’s Warehouse, Vista Outdoor. Roundhill will take over production of Remington firearms which will continue in Ilion, New York.

Remington Factory Bankruptcy chapter 11
Remington-owned brands displayed at Remington booth at SHOT Show. Photo by Remington.

Even with surging firearms sales in 2020, Remington Arms Company (Remington) found itself in financial trouble — with overwhelming obligations to creditors and investors. Accordingly, on July 27, 2020, Remington filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy — the second time in recent years.

Remington Factory Bankruptcy chapter 11

Remington, based in Madison, North Carolina, previously filed for Chapter 11 in March 2018. With major loan reorganizations, Remington “emerged nearly two months later, having converted more than $775 million in debt into equity for its lenders.” (Source: Syracuse.com.) However, despite this debt-restructuring, the company struggled with high interest costs and litigation related to the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting. The perpetrator had a Bushmaster XM15-E2S rifle sold by Remington.

Remington Factory Bankruptcy chapter 11

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July 9th, 2019

Big News — Savage Arms Sold Off by Vista Outdoor

Savage Arms Management Sale Vista Outdoor divestiture sell-off buy-out

Big news for the shooting community! Just six years after it acquired Savage Arms, outdoor industry mega-corp Vista Outdoor is selling off Savage Arms. The firearms-maker will be acquired by a private investment group led by Savage’s current management. When the sale is complete, Vista Outdoor, parent company of dozens of outdoor brands such as Bushnell, Bell Helmets, CCI, Camelback, Federal, RCBS, and Weaver, will no longer produce firearms of any kind. The sell-back to the Savage management group will include Stevens Arms*, which primarily produces shotguns.

There were multiple reasons given for the sale, which include:
1. Cutting costs, reducing corporate debt, and consolidating operations at Vista Outdoor.
2. Focusing more on the ammunition brands Alliant, CCI, Speer, and Federal.
3. Giving Vista Outdoor’s “ammunition brands flexibility to work with any industry partner”.

In addition, we suspect that, given the current political climate and media antagonism towards gun-makers, Vista Outdoor’s leadership deemed that owning Savage was bad for the company’s overall image. The potential profits from Savage were simply not worth the negative press as well as the potential liabilities from gun-related lawsuits.

By the Numbers: Vista Outdoor acquired Savage Arms (and Stevens) in July 2013 for $315 million. The July 2019 sell-off of Savage Arms (and Stevens) for $170 million represents a $145 million loss for Vista Outdoor. That’s not a good business model.

Savage Arms Management Sale Vista Outdoor divestiture sell-off buy-out

Founded in 1894, Massachusetts-based Savage Arms is one of America’s oldest gun-makers. While it has produced a wide variety of firearms over the past 125 years, Savage is now best known for its affordable bolt-action hunting rifles that feature barrels attached by a barrel-nut. In recent years, Savage has also moved aggressively into the “black rifle” market producing its MSR series of AR-platform rifles in a variety of chamberings. Savage also produces a popular semi-auto Rimfire rifle, the Savage A17/A22 series.

Savage Arms Management Sale Vista Outdoor divestiture sell-off buy-out

Here is the official Press Release covering Vista Outdoor’s sale of Savage Arms to a group of investors headed by Al Kasper, Savage’s President and CEO (emphasis added):

Vista Outdoor Announces Sale of Savage Brand
Vista Outdoor Inc. (“Vista Outdoor”) (NYSE: VSTO) announced today that it has completed the sale of the legal entity operating its Savage Arms and Stevens firearms brands to a financial buyer for a total purchase price of $170 million, comprised of $158 million paid at closing and $12 million to be paid upon maturity of a five-year seller note issued by the buyer to Vista Outdoor in connection with the transaction.

The sale is part of Vista Outdoor’s previously announced transformation plan, which outlined the intent to reshape the company’s portfolio by cutting costs, consolidating leadership, paying down debt, and divesting certain brands, including both its eyewear brands and firearms brands, in order to pursue growth in product categories where the company believes it can be market leaders. As the company now looks forward, the focus is on ammunition, hunting and shooting accessories, hydration bottles and packs, outdoor cooking products, and cycling/ski helmets and accessories.

“Divesting our Savage brand was a key aspect of our transformation plan,” said Chris Metz, CEO of Vista Outdoor. “While it was a difficult decision to sell such an iconic brand, I remain confident that this was the correct choice to help Vista Outdoor grow in those categories where we can have leadership positions. Savage is a fantastic business, and it deserves to continue to evolve into other firearms categories. At this time, however, we simply do not have the resources to transform Savage into the full-service firearms company that it deserves to be and, therefore, we determined the brand would be better off with a different owner. We’re excited to see Savage reach its full potential under new ownership.”

Savage was acquired by Vista Outdoor’s predecessor, ATK, in 2013. ATK’s sporting business – which included Savage, Bushnell, Federal and CCI Ammunition, and dozens of other hunt/shoot accessories brands, spun off in 2015 to become Vista Outdoor.

“The Savage acquisition helped create Vista Outdoor, and we’re grateful for all the success the brand brought to our company over the past six years,” said Metz. “However, this divestiture now gives our ammunition brands flexibility to work with any industry partner to create the best products and meet our consumers’ needs.”

At closing, Vista Outdoor received gross proceeds from the divestiture of $158 million. Vista Outdoor will use the net after-tax proceeds of the sale to repay outstanding indebtedness.

“Reducing our debt is a key part of turning around our business,” said Metz. “Selling Savage and further reducing our overall leverage will improve our financial flexibility and better position the company for long-term growth. We’ve now rebuilt the company’s foundation to provide a more stable base upon which to grow. We have a portfolio of brands that all have the potential to be strong, market leaders in their respective categories and I’m proud of my team’s efforts in reshaping the portfolio over the course of the past year.”


*American firearms manufacturer J. Stevens Arms & Tool Company, now part of Savage Arms, introduced the .22 Long Rifle cartridge in 1887. Savage Arms was founded in 1894 by Arthur Savage in Utica, New York. Within 20 years Savage was producing rifles, handguns, and ammunition. Savage introduced the first hammerless lever-action rifle, the Model 1895, derived from Arthur Savage’s Model 1892 rifle that he had designed for Colt.

Story tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.

Permalink Gunsmithing, Hunting/Varminting, News 6 Comments »
February 9th, 2019

Get Rebates on Pistol Ammunition — Five Popular Brands

Federal Speer American Eagle Blazer ammunition pistol ammo rebate Vista Outdoor 2019

Need pistol ammo? Want to save money? Then check out the latest promotion from Federal and other Vista Outdoor ammo brands. With this rebate you get $2.00 back for every 50-round box of centerfire ammo you buy, except for 9mm Luger (9x19mm) — that qualifies for a $1.00/box rebate. Now through March 31, 2019, rebates are offered for all these participating brands: Federal, Speer, Blazer, American Eagle, and Independence. You must buy at least 250 rounds (5 boxes) to qualify. CLICK HERE for qualifying ammo.

NOTE: Qualifying purchases must be made December 3, 2018 through March 31, 2019. The DEADLINE for mail-in or online submissions is April 30, 2019. To redeem online, visit Promotions.vistaoutdoor.com.

Federal Speer American Eagle Blazer ammunition pistol ammo rebate Vista Outdoor 2019

CLICK HERE for Federal Ammo Rebate Form »

Check out the Slow-Motion Footage of a 1911-type pistol shooting .45 ACP rounds. Bullet flights were captured at 73,000 frames per second:

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