Any Historians out there?

Any Historians out there?

This is a discussion on Any Historians out there? within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I recently received my dad's old BUG from when we was a reserve LEO, and am trying to find some history on it. It's a ...

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  1. #1
    New Member Array Penguin's Avatar
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    Any Historians out there?

    I recently received my dad's old BUG from when we was a reserve LEO, and am trying to find some history on it. It's a small .380 semiauto. It's better crafted than most of the "saturday night specials" that I've seen, but I'm not familiar with the company and Google came up empty. Markings on the gun consist of "FI Ind Wash DC" on the left side of the slide, and "FI Mod D Cal 380" on the right side of the slide. The serial number is just above the trigger on the right side of the body. The rifling is a little worn, it needs some cleaning up and I've yet to fire it, but it would make a nice carry gun for the wife if it pans out.

    Oops, forgot to mention...I'm guessing (from when my dad was a reserve) that it's probably 1960's-1970's vintage.

    Thanks in advance!
    Last edited by Penguin; February 4th, 2007 at 01:22 PM. Reason: forgot something


  2. #2
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    If we had pic posting functional I'd say let's see a pic - maybe later on you might be able to.

    No conclusions from here right now but always interested in old pieces. Trying to deduce the ''FI'' bit, with no luck as of now.
    Chris - P95
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  3. #3
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    http://www.e-gunparts.com/productsch...1390zMODEL%20D

    Firearms Intl. Inds. (F. I. Industries) US Subsidiary of Garcia Corp.

    The link will take you to a diagram of the pistol. It would seem it was a fairly common pistol and I found a couple links to trigger shoes for it and an auction site that had one in good condition that sold for $330.

    Gunbroker has a manual up for auction:

    http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/Vie...?Item=65149575

    It is a start!
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  4. #4
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    Kudos Chorizo

    Looks from diagram like a locked breech design too.
    Chris - P95
    NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.

    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


    http://www.rkba-2a.com/ - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.

  5. #5
    Distinguished Member Array lowflyer's Avatar
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    Previous importer and assembler located in Washington, D.C.
    F.I. manufactured and imported various pistols, rifles, and shotguns, including AYA, Astra (mostly Star D models), Bronco (.22 LR cal. single shot rifles and .410 bore single shot shotguns), FN Supreme Mauser bolt action rifles, Iver Johnson Pony handguns, Rossi .22 cal. rifles, Sako rifles, Star pistols, and Unique pistols and rifles.
    F.I. sold less than 100 Pony .380 ACPs that were marked Colt before the Mustang was introduced - these are rare. While some models are relatively rare, collectability to date has been minimal and most models sell in the $125-$250 range.

    Source: https://store.bluebookinc.com/Downlo...uct=GUN&id=370

    I bet it looks like this:



    And here is the rest of the story...

    In the middle 1970s, Colt decided to offer a .380 auto, and chose to partner with Star instead of making their very own gun. The gun (to be called the Pony) was to be assembled in the US, presumably by Colt, from a Star DK slide & associated internals, with a U.S. made frame. Some reports specify steel, but if this is a DK, the frame should be alloy. Part of the US manufacture and frame was due to the 1968 Gun Control Act, which placed restrictions on importation of small handguns.

    For some reason, after this product was announced, the Colt/Star partnership was dissolved and very few Colt-branded guns seem to have been sold. Iver Johnson bought the U.S. manufacturing rights to the gun, and sold a number of them. Apparently quite a few frames were made in anticipation of the Colt deal, as all the early Johnson serial numbers start with "CPA" (Colt Pony Automatic). It is also possible that some slides were made in the U.S. by Iver Johnson (some manufacturing marks and methods vary), but all the small parts were Spanish imports by Star.
    Colt model Pony with original box and warranty card

    This gun was also sold under the Starfire name, though I am unclear if this was a pure Star pistol with the requisite modifications to be allowed under CGA '68 or was simply another brand under the Iver Johnson banner. All of these guns are identical to the DK models discussed above. FIE also sold the model D as an FIE-made gun, with the model D designation. No Star branding or importation marks appear, so this may also be a related endeavour where an essentially Star pistol is sold under another name entirely.

    Source: http://www.star-firearms.com/firearm.../d/index.shtml
    Last edited by lowflyer; February 3rd, 2007 at 11:16 PM.
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  6. #6
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    There are several threads about this particular pistol. I started at least two of them myself. Here are some links for you to check out.

    Help w/380 Auto identification

    New Pony in the Stable

    F.I. Model D range report w/ new mags

    Reports on FI Model D and Pre-War S&W .38

    Schematic and parts list

    I hope they help.
    Last edited by dr_cmg; February 4th, 2007 at 12:13 AM.
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  7. #7
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    That is a good looking gun, just one more thing I'll have to keep my eyes open for.
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  8. #8
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    MNBurl

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  9. #9
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    WOW!!!!!! You guys are amazing!! That picture is almost exactly like my gun except my grips don't have any insignia/logos or places for them. It is a CPA serial number. I can't wait to clean this one up and get it to the range! Thanks for all your input. I guess I'll have to make my next question a little more difficult! lol

    Thanks again!

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