ARTV: The European American Armory Story

posted on February 17, 2021
European American Armory, based in Cocoa, Fla., is an importer that brings in firearms and accessories from numerous different manufacturers in Europe, as well as Indonesia. The company was started in 1990 by Keith Bernkrant and Paul Richter, at first importing pistols from Tanfoglio and Weihrauch before gradually expanding to rifles and other foreign manufacturers.

A Tanfoglio Witness completion handgun.
A Tanfoglio Witness completion handgun.

As an importer, EAA started as a "boxes in, boxes out" company in the early years, selling stock items from the select manufacturers without any input into the product production. Now, EAA works with its manufacturers to develop new products, with the bulk of its business being geared for competition handguns. The handguns offered by EAA have several tiers available, from baseline models to pricey fully customized and tuned race guns.

The Tanfoglio Witness P polymer-framed handgun.
The Tanfoglio Witness P polymer-framed handgun.

Most all of these competition handguns offered by EAA are produced by Tanfoglio, an Italian company. Tanfoglio started by producing smaller handguns and has since moved up into the production of high-end competition pistols. In 1983, it developed the TZ75 handgun that later evolved into the TZ75 Series 88, which was called the "Witness" model by EAA in 1990 with it started importing the pistols.

The Tanfoglio 1911 Witness P polymer-framed handgun.
The Tanfoglio 1911 Witness P polymer-framed handgun.

One of the new Tanfoglio handguns offered by EAA is a polymer-frame version of the Witness Stock 3 series at a more economic price point, the Witness P series. This new polymer-framed Witness series shares all the same control and layout features of the full metal-framed Witness series, without the higher price point. The Witness P was developed by Tanfoglio at the request of EAA, and accepts caliber-conversion kits for 9 mm, .40 S&W, .45 ACP, 10 mm, and even .22 LR that all fit onto the same frame. 

The EAA Abdo opened with pistol ready to draw.
The EAA Abdo opened with pistol ready to draw.

Another Tanfoglio pistol offered by EAA is a polymer-framed 1911, the 1911 Witness P. The change from the traditional metal frame used in standard 1911s results in a more comfortable grip as well as a smoother recoil impulse. The grip size itself is allowed to be more compact then what is found on normal 1911s, due to the polymer construction as well. 

The EAA "Smart" Abdo.
The EAA "Smart" Abdo.

EAA is not only in the firearms business today, but the accessory and secure storage side of the firearms market as well. One such product is the Abdo lockable, fully-enclosed holster for handguns. The Abdo is a storage box that secures and conceals the user's handgun until activated, when the side panel opens to allow the user to draw their pistol. There is another version called the "Smart" Abdo that can be locked remotely, tracked and set up electronically to where only the user can open the side banner to get access to the pistol inside. 

The vehicle version of the EAA Abdo.
The vehicle version of the EAA Abdo.

EAA also offers a Abdo option for vehicles that does not compromise the speed of a draw within the tight confines inside a vehicle. This version of the Abdo features a opening gate at the top of the box, which when activated slides open. After the gate opens, the pistol is sprung out of the container upward, grip first, into the user's hand. This Abdo variation has electronic safety features as well, and includes a fob that can be pressed to lock the Abdo when the user leaves the vehicle, or unlocked when needed.

For more information on European American Armory as well as the firearms and accessories it offers, visit eaacorp.comTo watch complete segments of past episodes of American Rifleman TV, go to americanrifleman.org/artv. For all-new episodes of ARTV, tune in Wednesday nights to Outdoor Channel 8:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. EST. 

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