Cooper Firearms of Montana
|Key people||Dan Cooper, Founder|
Cooper Firearms of Montana was founded in 1990 by Dan Cooper and two other former Kimber of Oregon employees.
Cooper was created to build affordable custom-quality accurate rifles. As they put it "Rifles should shoot as well as they look and vice versa". All Cooper rifles carry an accuracy guarantee. The guarantee for rimfires is 5 shots in .25 in (6.4 mm) at 50 yards (46 m), while for centerfires it is 3 shots in .5 in (13 mm) at 100 yards (91 m).
In 1993 Cooper created their first single-shot rifle in .223 Remington. This rifle later became their Model 21. In 2005 They made their first rifles that had synthetic stocks. Previously all rifles had wood in a variety of grades. In 2007 the first Cooper repeater (non single-shot) rifle was created - the Model 52.
- Model 16 (discontinued) - single shot action for cartridges based on the WSSM family, as well as 6 mm BR and 6 mm PPC.
- Model 21 - single shot bolt action for cartridges in the .223 Rem family.
- Model 22 - single shot bolt action for cartridges in the 308 Win and family and similar.
- Model 38 - single shot bolt action for cartridges based on the .22 Hornet and similar.
- Model 40 (discontinued) - repeating bolt action for cartridges based on the .22 Hornet and similar.
- Model 52 - repeating bolt action for cartridges in the .30-06 Springfield family.
- Model 54 - repeating bolt action for cartridges in the .308 Win family.
- Model 56 - repeating bolt action for cartridges in the .300 Win Mag family.
- Model 57-M - repeating bolt action for rimfire cartridges.
- Model 51 - repeating bolt action for cartridges in the .223 Rem family.
Political donation controversy
On October 27, 2008 a USA Today article featuring executives supporting Barack Obama for president was published naming Dan Cooper as a financial supporter of the campaign. Scandal soon erupted across gun-related web forums and blogs when it was made public that Dan Cooper supported a pro-gun control Presidential candidate and had donated several thousand dollars to his campaign. Gun owners and blogs reacted to the news calling for a boycott of his company.
By October 28, 2008 Cooper Firearms released a message on their website, noting that the company itself had not contributed in any fashion, and clarifying Cooper's contributions.
On October 29, 2008 Cooper Firearms updated the message on their website indicating the board of directors asked Dan Cooper to step down as CEO of the company.
In an October 30, 2008 article from USA Today Dan Cooper confirmed that he did indeed resign as CEO. In the same article the governor of Montana, Brian Schweitzer said he was disturbed by the backlash. Bob Ricker, executive director of the pro-gun control American Hunters and Shooters Association, called it "McCarthyism at its worst" noting that "If you're a gun owner, but you have a contrary view to some of these wackos, they will go out and try to destroy you."
- Dilanian, Ken (30 October 2008). "Rifle maker bounces boss who supports Obama". USA Today. Retrieved 9 September 2010.
- "Cooper arms of Montana - History". Retrieved 22 September 2007.
- House, James E (2005). The Gun Digest Book of .22 Rimfire: Rifles·Pistols·Ammunition. Gun Digest Books. p. 288. ISBN 978-0-87349-908-8. "Rimfire rifles produced by Cooper Firearms of Montana must produce extremely small groups before being declared ready for shipment."
- Shideler, Dan (2010). Guns Illustrated 2011: The Latest Guns, Specs & Prices. Gun Digest Books. p. 9. ISBN 978-1-4402-1392-2. Retrieved 27 May 2014. "They have earned a reputation for making rifles of exceptional high quality that possess unsurpassed tact-driving [sic] accuracy."
- "Touring Cooper Firearms". Guns Magazine. April 1, 2003. Retrieved 20 October 2008.
- Petty, Charles E. (April 2003). "Romance on the range: when a rifle looks and shoots like this, love is inevitable". Guns Magazine. Retrieved 9 September 2010. "It was truly handsome, and contrary to its nice appearance, I subsequently learned it was the least expensive offering in their entire catalog...One of the Cooper rifle's claims to fame is, superior accuracy"
- Andersen, Dave (March 2004). "Cooper Arms Varminter - Rifleman". Guns Magazine. Retrieved 9 September 2010. "Not only does it deliver outstanding accuracy, it does so with refinement, elegance and distinction."
- "Our History". Cooper Firearms web site. Retrieved 9 September 2010.
- "Our Rifles". Cooper Firearms web site. Retrieved 9 September 2010.
- "Specifications". Cooper Firearms web site. Retrieved 9 September 2010.
- Dilanian, Ken (28 October 2008). "More executives sold on Obama". USA Today. Retrieved 9 September 2010.
- "Cooper Firearms of Montana's public response". Cooper Firearms web site as archived by WebCite. Archived from the original on 29 October 2008. Retrieved 27 May 2014. "Regarding the USA Today Article. Cooper Firearms of Montana, Inc. did not contribute and does not support in any fashion the campaign of Senator Obama. Nine months ago Dan Cooper (personally) made an online donation to the campaign in an effort to help defeat Hillary Clinton and in protest of American plant closures and the shipping of jobs overseas. Three months ago he made yet another donation to the McCain campaign and the Republican National Committee totaling over twice that given to Obama campaign."
- "Cooper Firearms of Montana Statement". Cooper Firearms web site as archived by WebCite. Archived from the original on 29 October 2008. Retrieved 27 May 2014. "The employees, shareholders and board of directors of Cooper Firearms of Montana do not share the personal political views of Dan Cooper. ... The board of directors has asked Mr. Cooper to resign as President of Cooper Firearms of Montana, Inc."