The AutoMag Returns: The New Kodiak .44 AMP

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I always like to see old gun designs put back into production. The original Model 180 AutoMag pistol is going back into production after being discontinued about twenty years ago (please correct me if I am wrong). An Alaskan firm called Auto Mag Company, not in anyway connected with the original now defunct Arcadia Machine & Tool (AMT), will be manufacturing 1350 Automag pistols in 2011.

Kodiak .44 AMP

Of the 1350 pistols to be produced, 350 will be collectors “Classic” model that will be made using original Automag frames and 1000 will be the 100% new Kodiak model.

The cost of the pistol will be $5600 for Kodiak model in stainless and $3100 with a parkerized finish. At these prices only hardcore devotees will be buying them. They company has now released pricing for the Classic model.

The original AutoMag in .44 AMP

The Automag Company plans only to offer the pistols chambered in the .44 Auto Mag (AMP) round. Cor-Bon still manufactures this round which sells for just under $40 per box of 20.

[ Many thanks to Andy for emailing me the link. ]




Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


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  • Vak

    This is absolutely awesome. Expensive as hell, but awesome. The automag always seemed to be a much more interesting magnum autoloader than the desert eagle.

    Now I will just hope I will be able to buy one someday. As for the ammo, I guess reloading it isn’t much different than reloading “classical” .44 magnum.

  • MrMaigo

    At least there’s good ammo for it

  • Raymond

    I loved how the .44 automag cases were originally made from cut down .308 cases, does anyone know if you can cut down a .30-06 case for it as well?

  • SoulTown

    Are you listening, Vltor?

  • Warmworm

    @ Raymond
    found this on Wikipedia: The .44 Auto Mag Pistol (AMP) cartridge was introduced in 1971.[1] Its rimless, straight wall case was originally formed by trimming the .308 Winchester or .30-06 case to 1.30 inches (33 mm).[1] Loaded ammunition was once available from the Mexican firm of Cartuchos Deportivos Mexico and from Norma (a Swedish firm), which also produced empty cases.[1] Today loaded ammunition is available from Cor-Bon, and new .44 AMP brass is available from Starline Brass. The dedicated handloader can also form AMP cases from .30-06 or .308 Winchester brass, using a series of forming dies and an inside neck reamer.[1]

  • Freiheit

    @Raymond – Wikipedia says “Yes” but like all wiki articles, verify it yourself before you trust it. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AutoMag_(pistol)#Ammunition

  • Aaron

    Raymond, you can cut down 30-06, 308, .243, 7mm-08, .358, 270, 280, 25-06, 8×57 and 7×57 etc…anything with the .473 base dimension and enough case length to make the case. if you dont reload, loaded ammunition is available from Cor-Bon and for the reloader, new .44 AMP brass is available from Starline Brass. The dedicated handloader can also form AMP cases from .30-06 or .308 Winchester brass, using a series of forming dies and an inside neck reamer.

  • Andy

    I haven’t perused their forum so maybe they’ve already done this but they need to get another ammo munafacturer on board. The guy who is making my upper receiver ordered a bunch in November from Cor Bon. He cancelled it in June. Over seven months and no ammo. Perhaps with this new Automag they’ll decide to keep some in stock? A DPX load wouldn’t hurt either.

    Same goes for Starline. They need to recieve a sufficient backorder until they make some. Which is rare.

    Getting Hornady to offer a load or two would be awesome. It would definitely help legitimize the pistol. But I don’t see it happening. I’d be happy if Grizzly Cartridge Co offered some. I love their “Punch” bullet. And their copper bullets are pretty sick too. I actually like them better than DPX.

    But this is all speculation on my part. The price point hurts. And I can’t see anyone who has to save up for a “Classic” ever shooting it. Probably put it in a bank vault unfired.

    Heck, I’m going to be in the red for a Kodiak as it is. IMO the gun should be $2,100/$2,200 not $3,100. The price is going to turn off too many people. Couple that with hard to get ammo and I can’t help but be pessimistic about the longevity of this company.

    I’m REALLY hoping I’m wrong. I love the Automag and have longed for one for many years. But these guns need to work and work well. I guess we’ll know next year if they do or not.

  • El Duderino

    Kinda small trigger guard for a pistol made in Alaska! I know it’s intended for folks everywhere, just saying…

    Definitely have to be a devotee when there are good .44 Magnum Desert Eagles out there for less than $1k. Some even come with most of their first box of ammo. :)

    There is a Buy It Now on Gunbroker for a custom .44 AutoMag for $4500, gun looks nicer than the new one. Something tells me those prices from the new company will have to come down a lot to generate sales.

  • Martin (M)

    @ Raymond

    While it’s true that the 308 is sort of a cut down 30.06, the rim is actually a little beefier on the 308. While using 30.06 stock may feed and fire just fine, you may run the risk of extraction failures.

    BTW, thumbs up for Kodiak for bringing the Automag back.

  • Ladyfox

    I’ve always craved to have one of these but every time reality comes calling when I look at the cost of the ammo. Nowadays there are rounds that one of these could be chambered for and still have the same ummph for a lower price like .455 Webley, .50 AE, or even .50 GI which I think the design should be able to handle and all of them cheaper per round to boot.

    *sigh* Still, nice to dream…

  • moose777

    yeah!!!!!!!!!!! its been so long i dont care about the price this is on the top of my list my wallet just suffered a stroke

  • Ken

    Want! Now!

  • Tom

    I have always felt that the AutoMag Pistol was one of the finest looking pistol designs ever made..

  • Warmworm

    If I want a .44 AMP, I’ll get a Wildey for half the price this is being offered and use some of the other $1500 for ammo.

  • Tom

    Warmworm.. i believe the Wildey company went out of business some time ago.. But i do believe this new AutoMag is priced way, way to high.. Why is there such a large difference in price between the stainless model and the chrome-moly steel model.. doesnt make sense to me.. It shouldn`t be more than a couple hundred dollars at most.. Modern machining centers should bring production costs way down.. if they use them.. i think this re-introduction will fail because its to costly.. especially in this economy.. There is a nice used AutoMag for sale at my local gun shop for $1800.. its been sitting there for months.. Brass should be available if you search the web for it..

  • HerbG

    Back in days of yore, Auto Mag appeared on the cover of Guns and Ammo and I, along with a lot of others, sent in a deposit for this new wonder gun. Two years later, still no gun but I finally did get my deposit back. That set the stage for my general mistrust of start-up gun companies and Auto Mag in particular. The last AM I saw was a .357 some buy was shooting in a silhouette match years ago. It jammed, and jammed, and well, he never finished the match. To say the least, I’m not excited to see AM return, and I expect to see tons of excuses and very few, if any, guns.

  • Bryan S

    Part of the price is going to be the premium on items that come from the far north state… shipping of raw materials and equipment is killer up there.

  • http://www.nitroexpress.com Mehul Kamdar

    The original Automag pistols were also extremely expensive when they came out. That was a part of the reason why they did not sell. There is a market for a premium product, though, and always will be. The new business probably plans to cater to this market. I hope that they succeed.

  • Andy

    Well, I’ve always liked the fact that this pistol is single action with the safety in the right place.

    Most will think that it’s not important as how many will actually CCW one of these?

    Well, I know of at least one. ;)

  • 44 automag

    Take it for what it’s worth. I’ve had several automags over the years. If making money is the goal, then I feel the best way is to just make 8 1/2″ vent rib barrels. That’s what most people want.
    44 automag

  • http://automagcompany.com Alex

    New forum!

    AutoMagForum.com

    Visit us!

  • chip baker

    FOR PEOPLE THAT THINK THEY ARE GOING TO BUY A WILDEY, WEBLEY 455, OR A DESERT EAGLE, JUST DON’T UNDERSTAND THE AUTO MAG CONCEPT. THEY DON’T UNDERSTAND WHAT THEY’RE MISSING.

  • Andrew

    Hey Tom,

    Do you have contact details for your local gunshop with the 44 AutoMag?

    Please post them if you can – I think I want to buy it!

  • http://google iceman

    Starline Brass company makes great .44 AMP brass. Try that when you get the new Automag. Should be able to find some reloading dies as well.

  • Rob

    Recently I was fortunate to find a TDE 44 automag in a local pawn & gun shop at a price that I thought was too high until I started researching other available 44 automags for sale. I consider myself to be very lucky to have negotiated a price of $1,ooo.oo. I have found a shop that loads ammo with
    starline brass at a decent price and have learned a few things that a good gunsmith has helped me with, including chrome plating the bolt and guide rods, polishing, and good lubrication which has eliminated a great deal of the friction and the jamming experienced when I first fired the gun. I am interested in learning more and the availability of any components for sale. I am also considering customizing, including the fitting of a laser, light, and compensator.
    I really like shooting this gun!

  • Chuck Hotze III

    I’ve got a couple of the aforementioned Norma & CDM Headstamped boxes of .44 AMP ammo in my collection.

    What are they worth?

  • Schwammy

    Rob, you got that for an amazing price! That’s about the price a barrel alone goes for. They are a hoot to shoot! Take a look at http://www.glossover.co.uk/bruce/page.asp?id=36 to keep your Auto Mag working. (Bolt-slam will destroy the extractor quickly and that part alone is over $100 when you can find it.) There is also some great info to be found at http://www.amtguns.info. Parts are very expensive and scarce so take the time to treat it right. Hard core collectors would be in hospital on oxygen to hear of modifications, but as a regular shooter (that alone is enough to give shakes to some collectors) I say go for anything that enhances your enjoyment of it.

    BTW, Auto Mag Company has been “considering a new business arrangement” for a few months now, Many doubt they, like others who have tried to revive the Auto Mag, will ever get off the ground.

    • Rob

      Schwammy,
      Thanks for the comments and the info. I will not make any other changes to my 44 auto mag other than the chrome plating mentioned in my earlier comments, and I would recommend the plating to anyone who has a regular shooter. It will enchance the opperation and cut down on some of the wear for the long term.
      I have a standard model 6-1/2 in. ribbed barrel
      and I can get good ammo for about $1.00/round.
      I am now searching for the 357 and 41 barrels.

  • Andy from CT

    So much for that. The website isn’t there anymore.

  • Mark

    I have been a machinist for 25 years, owned my own{cnc} shop for 16 years now. I own a TDE/El Monte/High Standard stamped 44 amp Automag for 25 years.
    I just don’t get the $5600 price tag, not even a little bit.
    I could build this gun in my shop with my eyes closed!!! I have purschased investment castings & had them forged to boot. Amortized over 1000 pieces, it’s just not that expensive. Let along already having a whole slough of original castings!
    I for one will not be waiting for it’s return. just buy an original for less than half the price, and be done with it.
    Mark

  • Cubbug

    Well, I bought one at the old ‘Gun and Ammo’ shop in Anchorage when they first came out in 1974. Fooled around and sold it. I was at a shop in Anchorage last week and found one that had just came in on consignment the day before. It’s the TDE made in El Monte. Made an offer of $1500 and got it. Original case, Allen wrenches and 2 boxes of ammo. Never was looking for one or really expected to find one, but sure glad to have one back in the case!

  • Sharpshooter

    I’m selling my .44 Automag , never been fired and fully gone thru just resently , lubed and cleaned from sitting for 34 years in its original box…never removed …just recieved my Cor-Bon box of 20 ammo for it which took 5.5 months of waiting…if your a collector this is for you
    Email me if interested

  • Lawrence

    I purchased my Auto Mag when they first came out (#814). I have been shooting 30-06 cut offs in the gun for its total life. It shoots like a B###h compared to my 357 or the 455. In all respects it is a fine handgun but does require some work to handle it.
    The originally suggested loads do not live up to the velocities specified but they are very good and the accuracy is spectacular. From a machine rest, the gun shoots a 3 to 5 in group at 50 yards depending on the powder, bullets etc. It shoots far better than I do.

    It will not properly elevate soft nose bullets and does require a full or at least copper jacket where the bullet contacts the ramp.

    It will drop a Kodiak bear if the shot is slightly high between the eyes. Not a kill but a serious knock down. You can then finish him off with the 7 MM Remington Mag.

    From the side of a 6 cylinder Chevrolet, it will take out 1/2 the two center cylinders and blow the remains out through the fender on the far side of the car.

    The original case had a problem with the plastic foam. It started to break down releasing chlorine which has left several small etch marks on the gun but the gun is absolutely sound after all these years.

    I don’t know why anyone would ever sell one if they actually became well acquainted with it.

  • Alex

    Looking for recoil rods for an AMT 44 Auto Mag