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Old 07-23-2019, 09:29 PM
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Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft  
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Default Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft

This post is made primarily to leave searchable info for anyone looking to explain paperwork that shows Smith & Wesson having shipped a gun directly to Piper Aircraft, Inc. Also, it is to pass along an interesting story.

Many of us collect guns. Some like new in the box...I like a verifiable story. It does not need to be Elvis's gun or anything of the sort. For example, I have a ragged Model 37 that rode in a tow truck drivers pants or coat pocket for 24 years and looks the part. Also, have 3" Model 64 stolen from its owner and used to rob a Salisbury, NC Waffle House and corresponding court paperwork. A good story and opportunity to talk to prior owners can make a gun irresistible.

So, stumbled across a Smith Model 469 on a big auction sight last night. The auction includes the original box and paperwork reflecting shipment from Smith & Wesson directly to Piper Aircraft in 1985. Also included, is a handwritten receipt showing that Harry [Last Name Omitted] purchased the pistol in 1985. Google search lead me to a simple website for an small aviation company owned by a Harry having the same last name. So, I sent him an email with questions and he called this morning. Here is what I learned...

He said that Bangor Punta owned Smith & Wesson and Piper Aircraft at the time and Smith & Wesson regularly shipped guns to Piper Aircraft as a distributor. Piper employees could purchase up to 3 guns per year from Piper. Harry bought the pistol as a gift for his friend and attorney (Name Omitted) in 1985. The attorney had received work-related threats and wanted a CCW piece. The friend / attorney who received the Model 469 died in a fiery plane crash in Florida in December 2017. Not sure if friend / attorney sold the pistol before death or it went to auction from his estate. Harry had not seen the pistol in decades. Interesting story and nice guy.

So, leaving this bread crumb if anyone else wants to know why Smith shipped guns directly to Piper Aircraft. Bangor Punta owned both companies. Some of you may have known that already. It was news to me. EDIT: Not likely going to purchase the pistol because DA/SA does not work for me.

Last edited by NCBeagle; 07-23-2019 at 09:39 PM.
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Old 07-23-2019, 09:45 PM
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Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft  
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An attorney receiving work related threats! Say it isn't so!

Fascinating story behind the gun. Thanks for doing the leg work and sharing it here, with us. Best regards, 18DAI
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Old 07-24-2019, 06:55 AM
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Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft  
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Interesting bit of S&W trivia! My immediate thought was that it must have something to do with security at its production facility, so the Bangor Punta connection came out of left field. Thanks for a good story, Ryan!

Hmmmm...wonder what else BP owned at the time that might have had guns shipped directly to it as a distributor?
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Old 07-25-2019, 06:11 AM
MJK-MOD-547 MJK-MOD-547 is offline
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Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft  
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Smith and Wesson also shipped weapons to the companies that Bangor Punta owned. Cal Boats, O'Day Corp., Ranger Yachts, Piper Aircraft, Starcraft boats to name a few.

I worked for Piper for 25 years and purchased a few what turned out to be classics during those years. We got a great employee discount!

I worked in tooling and was surrounded by excellent tool makers many who were retired military vets from WW2's "GREATEST GENERATION". I was schooled by one vet on which ones to buy. He said that these will be classics...
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I regret I didn't purchase any of the SS autos.

That vet (God rest his soul) was a soothsayer!!!

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Old 07-25-2019, 06:54 AM
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Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MJK-MOD-547 View Post
Smith and Wesson also shipped weapons to the companies that Bangor Punta owned. Cal Boats, O'Day Corp., Ranger Yachts, Piper Aircraft, Starcraft boats to name a few.

I worked for Piper for 25 years and purchased a few what turned out to be classics during those years. We got a great employee discount!

I worked in tooling and was surrounded by excellent tool makers many who were retired military vets from WW2's "GREATEST GENERATION". I was schooled by one vet on which ones to buy. He said that these will be classics...
Mod 41
Mod 547
Mod 29
Mod 586
Mod 650
Mod 651
Mod 48
I regret I didn't purchase any of the SS autos.

That vet (God rest his soul) was a soothsayer!!!
I had no idea anyone would know about any of the other companies! Thanks!

And you are absolutely right: you got some great advice about what would become classics. Impressive group right there!
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Old 07-27-2019, 11:13 PM
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Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft  
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I know a lot of the problems within the general aviation industry stemmed from product liability, but I can't help but wonder if the woes which beset Piper can be traced to BP. It seems those weren't great years for S&W, either.
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Old 07-28-2019, 12:29 AM
MJK-MOD-547 MJK-MOD-547 is offline
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Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom 1951 View Post
I know a lot of the problems within the general aviation industry stemmed from product liability, but I can't help but wonder if the woes which beset Piper can be traced to BP. It seems those weren't great years for S&W, either.
You have to remember that this is an investment company selling to another investment company that sold to another investment company that sold to an individual (Steward Milar) that filed for bankruptcy. Who also wanted to sell the certs and bust it up. Bankruptcy saved them and at the same time they went to court and had the liability law changed to 20 years instead of from day one. Everybody sucked money from that place before Bankruptcy. When Milar had it he took all the money that was in the bank as soon as he arrived.


When the bankruptcy judge was approving the money to be spent things started to turn around. Then it was sold to another investment company after bankruptcy that DOWNSIZED it's workforce (30, 25,15,and some 10 year employees to raise capitol for the big boondoggle PIPER JET. A business jet with ONE ENGINE made from the Malibu Mirage.
HA!! Nobody in his right mind would buy a business jet with one engine!! They also wasted time and money helping Honda with the jet they wanted to produce.
The Embraer Phenom 100 came out about the same time too!
That one has 2 engines and that one took off! (pun intended)
Piper had a chance to buy Gulfstream at one point but choose Ted Smith Aerostar instead and got hit with a 400 million dollar class action lawsuit. There were bad business decisions made by everyone who had control except Old man Piper when it was a family business. Much of Piper's problems came after Bangor Punta. They got in, made money and got out.

I think Piper is are doing ok now. They have about a thousand people working there.

Last edited by MJK-MOD-547; 07-28-2019 at 12:33 AM.
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Old 08-03-2019, 10:52 AM
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Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft Pistols shipped from Smith and Wesson to Piper Aircraft  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MJK-MOD-547 View Post
You have to remember that this is an investment company selling to another investment company that sold to another investment company that sold to an individual (Steward Milar) that filed for bankruptcy. Who also wanted to sell the certs and bust it up. Bankruptcy saved them and at the same time they went to court and had the liability law changed to 20 years instead of from day one. Everybody sucked money from that place before Bankruptcy. When Milar had it he took all the money that was in the bank as soon as he arrived.


When the bankruptcy judge was approving the money to be spent things started to turn around. Then it was sold to another investment company after bankruptcy that DOWNSIZED it's workforce (30, 25,15,and some 10 year employees to raise capitol for the big boondoggle PIPER JET. A business jet with ONE ENGINE made from the Malibu Mirage.
HA!! Nobody in his right mind would buy a business jet with one engine!! They also wasted time and money helping Honda with the jet they wanted to produce.
The Embraer Phenom 100 came out about the same time too!
That one has 2 engines and that one took off! (pun intended)
Piper had a chance to buy Gulfstream at one point but choose Ted Smith Aerostar instead and got hit with a 400 million dollar class action lawsuit. There were bad business decisions made by everyone who had control except Old man Piper when it was a family business. Much of Piper's problems came after Bangor Punta. They got in, made money and got out.

I think Piper is are doing ok now. They have about a thousand people working there.
I remember reading in the aviation press at the time that great things were hoped for when Milar arrived on the scene. Alas, not so.
The PiperJet? OMG.
I understand the Malibu's a great plane, although, quite frankly, the Aztec was OK by me, unless IIRC, you lost the left engine on take-off.
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