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Chris collects pre M-S Steyr hunting rifles, the M1892-1895 rifles
     
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2016 Annual Convention

MCA Annual Convention 2016

7/7 to 7/10/2016

We had a great gathering this year and are sorry that many of you missed it.  Rob Blank and I made a run to a fantastic motorcycle and motor sports museum outside of Birmingham called the Baker museum to warm things up.  As you know we started the official activities with a trip to the Steyr location in Bessemer.  They treated us like kings and queens.  We had a great tour of the AUG assembly line, distribution center, had wonderful refreshments and best of all were able to hold and delight a very large number of Steyr and Merkel firearms.  The guys were about to have a big sale so gave us a presale pick of their entire inventory.  I wanted to get one of Merkel’s new introductory rifles called an R-15.  I was able to look through a number of .30-06 boxes to find the wood I liked and was pleased to find the serial # was 13.  This rifle we were told is already changing its name because of a conflict with a much bigger firearms company that begins with R.  I really wanted to find a 6.5 x 55 so they showed me a beautiful SM12 in that caliber.  When they told me the sale price it was sold.  Several other guys also helped them to reduce their inventory and are also extremely happy with the firearms, clothing etc. they purchased.  The MCA wants to thank Scott O’Brian (manager), Eric Wood (sales) and everyone involved at SAI for being gracious and generous hosts.  I will get to a special member of the staff later.

On Friday we made an early start to the CMP’s (Civilian Marksmanship Program) facility outside of Talladega.  Driving up the grounds were immaculate and the building looked like a modern hotel.  Inside we had a safety lesson and then it was off to the 100 yd. range.  All the shooting points were stylishly covered, had bench rest tables and even some rifle rests if you did not have one.  Best of all was the electronic scoring system (6 ring to X with 10.1, 10.2, 10.3 type scoring for all the rings).  We shared rifles, took our practice shots and then shot for record.  With the electronic scoring we easily found that Dale Erlandson won the M-S Open Sight Match with me in second and Steve Shultz in third.  For the M-S Optical Sight Match the winner was Dale again, our newest member Harold    took second and Chris Ebert and I tied for third.  The last match was the any Steyr Open (but we did not allow the sniper rifle that SAI brought out since it was not owned by a member and it was just too good).  Leading the pack was Steve with his .22 RF Zephyr (even with the wind), followed by myself and our Chief Editor Lynn in third.  We would have done more shooting but the temperature and humidity were combining to make us want to go have a cool drink and some lunch.  I want to say thanks to Lynn for making an early departure from the range to get our booth setup at the show.

Before our meeting we had a very good “German” dinner at the hotel.  As per the minutes we had our raffle and a successful auction.  Thank you to all that purchased tickets, bought items and made the event a success through their work.  We than gave a special thanks to Einer Hoff from SAI.  He was there for all the events, brought firearms for events and was at the show both days.  How he put up with us I do not know but think he actually had a great time with us and got to meet some old friends along the way. I want to also thank all the officers and members that attended as well as those that helped to make the convention a success.  We need to also give a special thanks to our former President, Rob Blank, for his service and dedication.  I am glad that he will be continuing to serve as our Master at Arms.

Please feel free to contact me before then to say hi or discuss your ideas to make the MCA better.  Let’s have a GREAT YEAR.

John Ludwig 

President

2015 Annual Convention Events

The President, Rob Blank, called the meeting to order.

This was done after all attendee’s enjoyed a meal at Siegis' Restaurant in Tulsa, where the meeting was held.

Introductions of all present around the room occurred, with members and wives present giving their name and a brief description of their background. Thanks were offered to Tiny Tomsen for hosting the event.  Mr. Tomsen stated that he had also paid for the meal, including drinks, and requested all present donate $25 each to The Mannlicher Collectors Association in lieu of paying individual checks.  Tiny was thanked for his generosity.

A Mannlicher Shoot had been held Friday morning at the Red Castle range in Tulsa.  John Ludwig made prize presentation.  He presented the target used in the shoot to the winner, Steve Schultz, along with a Mannlicher Knife.  Tom Seefeldt had been second in the competition, with Rob Blank finishing third.  John Ludwig was announced as the open sight champion, but was the only entrant in that division.

It was noted the Presidents Reception has been held Friday evening in Jenks, Oklahoma at Tiny Tomsen’s building, called The Annex.  Refreshments and snacks had been provided through the generosity of Tiny Tomsen and his wife, Barbara.

Location of the meeting in 2016 will not be Tulsa, but a different location in order to mine new members.  It has been proposed to use Birmingham, Alabama, the location of the Mannlicher factory, as the next meeting location.  The Alabama Gun Collectors has a large show, but the dates of the show for 2016 have not been published. 

Rob Blank indicated that the raffle of the gun purchased last year would occur at next years meeting.  There was some discussion of the type of tickets to prepare.  The issue was not settled.

Lynn Levengood acted as auctioneer, assisted by Rob Blank, for the items that had been donated during the year.  Donors were Lynn Levengood, Tom & Mae Seefeldt, Steyr Arms, Tiny Tomsen & Barbara, Dale Erlandson, John Gowans, Aardvark Labs, Steve Schultz and The Mannlicher Collectors.

The meeting was adjorned.


2014 Annual Convention

For those of you who did not have the opportunity to attend our 2014 Annual Meeting, below is a portion of the minutes from the meeting so you have an idea of what goes on.  Much more fun was had during the weekend by the members.  We had a rifle match at Red Castle Gun Club; social gathering and opportunity to view the collection of one of our members; outstanding dinner and auction; and two days of the show to wander around as well as help out in our booth.

Make room in your schedule to attend in 2015.  If you are not a member yet, please join so you don’t miss the fun.

May 3, 2014

The Mannlicher Collectors Association

April 4, 2014

 

The President, Rob Blank, after enjoying a meal at Siegis' Restaurant in Tulsa, called the meeting to order.

 Introductions of all present around the room occurred, with members and wives present giving their name and a brief description of their background.  The owner of Steyr Mannlicher, Dr. Ernst Reichmayr, was introduced.  Thanks were offered to Tiny Tomsen for hosting the event. 

 The Vice President, Dr. Andrew Tadie, offered a toast to the departed founders of the Mannlicher Collectors Association (MCA), Mr. Roy Leopard, Don Henry, and to Charter Members Norman and Inga Tonn.

 Dr. Reichmayr spoke to the assembly of the history of Steyr Mannlicher, starting from 1370, making arms of the times.  In 1864, Josef Werndl took over the factory in Steyr, Austria, upon the death of his father and began the production of Mannlicher firearms.  In 1894 the factory began making bicycles, because they needed extra business.  Due to WW I military orders went up, resulting in the hiring of 6000 employees producing 8000 arms a week at the peak.  In 1903 Steyr started exporting to the United States through Abercrombie & Fitch.

 After the enforcement of treaties in the aftermath of WW I Steyr stayed in business with the manufacture of automobiles and bicycles.  Some arms were also manufactured.  Between the end of WWI and the German occupation, there were many mergers, so thus the company made tanks, tractors, autos, bicycles and bearings until 1984, when the conglomerate was broken apart.  After the breakup Steyr was reduced to making guns with 600 employees.  In 2007 there were 80 employees when Dr. Reichmayr acquired the company. 

 Dr. Reichmayr is from Steyr, having been born there.  His Grandfather was supervisor over stock making at Steyr.  Both his Father and Grandfather were hunters, and at the time, Steyr was the only rifle made in Austria. 

 He purchased the Steyr Mannlicher factory mainly through emotional attachment.  The company was in an awkward situation at the time.  $25 million was invested in the venture and the company now employs 200 people.  Its production is as high now as it was in the 1970's when 600 people were employed.

 The United States operations had moved a few times.  One of the changes made was to start importing Merkel and Anschutz rifles.  The merger was necessary to consolidate the sales force and provide an expanded product line.

 The office and facilities are now located in a new facility in Bessemer, Alabama.  The official opening of the new facility was April 4, 2014.  It has a very large display of current production guns.  The sales of Law Enforcement/Military and Hunting/Sporting equipment are currently split 50-50 between the types.  Their wish is to concentrate on quality of product.

 In answer to questions from the assembled members Dr. Reichmayr noted that Steyr Mannlicher is not related to Steyr Motors (now a Chinese firm); they are not importing Mauser arms to the U.S.; the trademark of Steyr is shared by all companies that split in 1984; Anschutz owns the air rifle portion of the former Steyr production; and Steyr is still making handguns.

 Dr. Reichmayr was presented with a Steyr Mannlicher target that was used at the 2014 Mannlicher shoot conducted the previous Thursday at the Red Castle range in Tulsa.  The target had been signed by the all the participants in the shoot.

 After Dr. Reichmayr finished his speech the floor was opened for nomination of officers for TMCA.

 It was determined that, due to the need to publish the meeting location for next year as soon as possible, the meeting be held during the Wannemacher show in Tulsa in April 11 & 12, 2015.  In order to handle the discussion and business of the annual meeting it was determined that the meeting should be held during the day on Friday, early enough to handle all of the business at hand, which includes electing officers to positions that are vacant and determining the location of the meeting in 2016.  Location of the meeting in 2016 should not be Tulsa, but a different location in order to mine new members.

 Rob Blank indicated that the raffle of the gun purchased last year would occur at next year’s meeting.

 Lynn Levengood acted as auctioneer for the club items that had been donated during the year.  Many interesting and unusual items were auctioned off over a wide range of bids.