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Dane Piper Spencers

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Starting maybe 10 years ago Dane Piper was trying to make Spencers.  Ken Howell designed
 the gun but never bothered to finish it.  Dane has been trying ever since.  One of his carbines
 use to be advertised on Dixie's web page.  Anyone know the status of these guns?

Steel-eye Steve:
I think you are referring to the Fletcher-Bidwell Spencers from Viroqua WI. I understand a few were produced to satisfy pre-orders. I heard a rumor that they went bankrupt but have not been able to confirm that.

Fletcher-Bidwell was the second name they used.  Don't remember the first.  The name changed after Ken Howell lost interest.  Piper is a vetenarian and I think the money behind this effort.  Originally Ken Howell was the gunsmith.  Developed a prototype.  Never got the magazine to work properly I think.  Why Ken dropped out I don't know but I do know that it left Dane holding the bag.  A lot of money invested and nothing to show for it.

Grizzle Bear:
After they had my $500 deposit for about 6 years, I finally got a Fletcher-Bidwell "Spencer."

I wrote a review of it for the NCOWS magazine, "The Shootist", but George wouldn't publish it, as he was afraid we would get sued.

The F-B "Spencer" was an unbelieveable piece of junk.  The one I got had just about everything wrong with it that a gun could have.  The worst part of it was I thought the forearm was loose, and took it off to tighten it.  Found out the barrel was loose, it was only held in place with a small set screw!

Never fired it, I was afraid to.  Sent it back, and they did give me my money back.  Only good thing I can say about the entire affair.

Grizzle Bear

Now that is really useful information.  Thanks!

Counting your gun I know of three.  One was advertised at Dixie's web site forever.  They must have finally sold it.  The third is owned by a NSSA shooter who didn't dislike it. 

I always felt sorry for Dane.  He clearly could not finish this once Ken Howell dropped out but he didn't, unfortunately, give up.  I'll bet he lost a fortune and got a LOT of grief.

I'd love to know who Ken Howell didn't finish this.



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