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 ATk - Parent to Federal Premium ammunition article 
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 Post subject: ATk - Parent to Federal Premium ammunition article
PostPosted: Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:08 am 
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I thought this was an interesting article, that is about a month old now. Then I looked into ATK a little further and found a very detailed and interesting website showing all kinds of ammunition and weapons they build. The article is 2 pages, so I won't embed the whole thing here.

Article: http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/08_38/b4100000266991.htm?chan=top+news_top+news+index+-+temp_top+story

Website for curious types: http://www.atk.com/customer_solutions_armamentsystems/cs_as_cammo_default.asp

I sent one of the guys there a friendly email, further inquiring on a tour/limited tour of the factory. I know there isn't a big chance for success but I think it would be great to see some of the production.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 08, 2008 2:28 pm 
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...and to follow up and likely simaltaneously kill the thread...

Here is the email I got:

Quote:
Mr. Smith,

Thank you for your interest in our company and support of our products. Unfortunately we do not do plant tours for the general public.

Best of luck this hunting season.

Sincerely,

Federal Communications Team


Can't say I don't understand their logic, given what they produce, but it was worth a shot. At least they were friendly in there letdown. Cool website regardless. Learned a few things myself.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 08, 2008 2:36 pm 
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the article makes it seem like ATK is only five years old. In fact it is the old honeywell military division which was split off a numberof years ago as alliant tech systems. Its now owner of several ammo plants with their purchase of the Outers/Speer/RCBS group as well as the lake city plant

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 08, 2008 2:40 pm 
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1911fan wrote:
the article makes it seem like ATK is only five years old. In fact it is the old honeywell military division which was split off a numberof years ago as alliant tech systems. Its now owner of several ammo plants with their purchase of the Outers/Speer/RCBS group as well as the lake city plant


I was surprised to find how many brands ATK was in possession of myself. I had no idea Speer and Federal were held by the same company. The way they are marketed you would never guess.

Makes me wonder if HST or Gold Dot is better. Same company technically sells them. I'm sure they share ballistic information. Marketing ploy?

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 09, 2008 7:14 pm 
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Hint : If you know an employee of ATK, they get discounts on merchandise made by any of their sister companies.

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 7:37 am 
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I'm not surprised ATK does not provide tours. They are frequently picketed (one group holds a die-in every week at one of their facilities) and I suspect they extremely concerned about security.

It definitely would have been interesting though!


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 10:40 am 
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I got a walk thru of the old hopkins torpedo plant several years ago, when it was still honeywell. they had an underground test tank that was blocks long. They also had a really cool display of older mechanisms and the progressions from mechanical to electronic, to solid state, and finally chip based guidance, really cool

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 10:57 am 
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When I was in engineering school, the chair of our department (also one of my profs) was a former engineer for Honeywell. He worked on weapons systems - mainly guidance and trigger systems. Some of the stories he told us about the facility were fascinating! He said testing out new products was the most fun - and he mentioned the water tank at the Hopkins facility. It cost a LOT of $$$ to build and it was very secret at the time.

I would love to get a glimpse of some of the test labs at ATK!

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 3:34 pm 
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Fubar wrote:
I'm not surprised ATK does not provide tours. They are frequently picketed (one group holds a die-in every week at one of their facilities) and I suspect they extremely concerned about security.

It definitely would have been interesting though!


I work for another major defense contractor. Since some of the more extreme examples at ATK, my location has invested quite a bit in "landscaping".

Which looks pretty but slightly awkward to the casual viewer. Anyone looking at it with a security angle in mind definitely appreciates the subtle addition of vehicle barriers, distance=security force multipliers and other additions.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 4:29 pm 
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Fubar wrote:
I'm not surprised ATK does not provide tours. They are frequently picketed (one group holds a die-in every week at one of their facilities) and I suspect they extremely concerned about security.


I used to work at the Army High Performance Computing Research Center. As you might guess it is a bunch of geeks playing with computers. Specifically everything we worked on was defensive. Things like vaccines for various neuro-toxins and diseases (like SARS, I worked on this), armor for tanks, network security (worked on that too), tools to help do CFD calculations (helps the computer model various things). All in all pretty helpful stuff for keeping people alive, and *no* research for killing people.

Yup we got protested. A friend ended up missing a test because he couldn't safely leave the building. Some people just don't like the military I guess.

edit: I forgot to add when the center moved to Stanford, same research, they got protested too.


Last edited by someone1980 on Mon Oct 13, 2008 5:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 5:06 pm 
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Remind me of a couple years ago a bunch of damn dirty hippies were blockading a military base to prevent the military from shipping out some vehicles to Iraq. They were yelling at the soldiers and pleading with them to stop the killing and abandon their posts. Claimed they were representing all the poor troops and wouldn't let the military send more to die.

What they didn't realize is the very troops and vehicles they were blockading was a medical unit. Those vehicles were basically armored ambulances.

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 17, 2008 9:56 pm 
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kecker wrote:
...What they didn't realize is the very troops and vehicles they were blockading was a medical unit. Those vehicles were basically armored ambulances.

Back in college, in Grand Forks, we would regularly hear about groups protesting out at the air base. One Martin Luther King day they were protesting against nuclear weapons or something, and some of the protesters decided to try and climb the base fence. Base security blew them off the fence with a water cannon... remember this was in ND... in January... Anyway, I thought it was an elegant solution.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 2:16 pm 
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ironbear wrote:
kecker wrote:
...What they didn't realize is the very troops and vehicles they were blockading was a medical unit. Those vehicles were basically armored ambulances.

Back in college, in Grand Forks, we would regularly hear about groups protesting out at the air base. One Martin Luther King day they were protesting against nuclear weapons or something, and some of the protesters decided to try and climb the base fence. Base security blew them off the fence with a water cannon... remember this was in ND... in January... Anyway, I thought it was an elegant solution.


Surprised the protesters didn't sue them for endangering their lives or some such BS.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 5:09 pm 
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kecker wrote:
Surprised the protesters didn't sue them for endangering their lives or some such BS.

The letters to the editor afterward were interesting. One protester wrote that they sprained an ankle in the incident and commented on the professionalism of base security and the quality of aid they got. The next letter basically accused security of being fascist thugs engaging in wanton violence...

I wonder what they expected. It is a nuke base after all. I knew a Sargent in base security. He said there were places on the base with shoot-first-ask-questions-later rules. These were just past the kiss-the-concrete-and-ask-questions areas.

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