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In 1956 a gentleman named Rudolph Koppe, who had immigrated from Germany, took on a couple new firearm lines: Baikal & Vostok Firearms from Russia.These firearms were from Tula and Tzhevsk in the Soviet Union, both of which had been gunsmithing centers for over five centuries.To the best of my knowledge this was the first quantity of firearms in North America from the communist country and I believe Ruko had exclusive rights to North America but because the U.S. would not allow Russian imports, it was basically Canada.For the next 25 years +, Ruko imported shotguns, 22 rifles and 22 target rifles and pistols from Baikal & from Vostok.
I’ve talked about Cooey firearms before but I’m not sure whether I have really driven home how much the Cooey firearm, especially the 22 rifle, dominated the Canadian Firearms landscape.Many shooters now find room in our budget for a new Browning T Bolt or a Ruger 10/22 or something in a CZ 457 series or Anschutz Target Rifle, but my question is this: will you ever find the excitement or early murmurs of adulthood that came with your first outing with Dad, Grandad or your big brother and a Cooey?
Sometimes nostalgia can be used as an excuse for being lazy and not wanting to investigate new products or ideas and admittedly my age group tend to be some of the worst offenders. But old is not necessarily better and to prove my point, here are a few examples of times when, in a sport steeped in history and nostalgia, looking forward is better than looking back.