ARMAMEX Standard Auto

One of the rarest and certainly one of the most mysterious of the Standard Automatic pistols is the fables ARMAMEX, S.A. model.

We were most fortunate during the N.R.A. Annual Meetings in Salt Lake City to have a chance to talk to Col. Rex Applegate.

Col. Applegate is a world renowned authority on both Military and Police Armament as well as the author of several standard texts on Civil Disturbance Containment proceedures, etc.

Col. Applegate was the found and President of Armamex, S.A. which was a Mexican Company headquartered in the State of Chihuahua. Armamex, S.A. was established to serve the Mexican Market with firearms produced and/or assembled within Mexico. Assembly of American firearms from components supplied by American Manufactures qualified the guns so produced to be exempt from the very heavy import duties then imposed on complete imported firearms.

Armamex, S.A. was in operation during the period 1955-1958. A total of approximately 200 4" Standard Automatic Pistols wwere assembled by Armamex, S.A. and marked as Armamex guns. The company also assembled various models of the guns made by the following manufacturers: MARLIN, HIGH STANDARD, and HARRINGTON AND RICHARDSON (Single Barrel Shotguns). All production was sold with Mexico.

We have been able to examine one Armamex Ruger Standard Automatic Pistol and from the information given to us by Col. Applegate believe that only one model was produced.

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The Armamex pistol we have inspected is a typical 4" Ruger Standard Auto Pistol of the period 1955-58 in all respects--with the very important exception of the markings. The blueing, polish, fit, finish, and funtion are excellent. The markings differ from standard Ruger Markings of the period in several important particulars. On the right side of the receiver just below the rear sight appear the words "HECHO EN MEXICO" (Made in Mexico). The serial number (right side of the receiver forward of ejector port) is a 4 digit numer with a letter prefix (R 1054). On the left side of the receiver is the company identification, "RUGER CAL. 22 L.R. - ARMAMEX, MEXICO".

Col Applegate advises that these guns were snapped up by the Mexican gun dealers as soon as they were produced and that demand was very strong for more guns after the pilor run was completed. Unfortunately, the Government changed and it suddenly proved impossible to obtain the necessary Government permit to continue production or to import the necessary component parts. Armamex, S.A. continued to exist until the company was finally disolved in mid 1960's.

We would like to thank col Rex. Applegate for his kindness in providing the information given above. Possibly some of these guns did find their way into the United States and one or more may be in Members' collections. If anyone does have an Armamex marked Standard Automatic Pistol, we would very much appreciate a letter giving details of the markings and the serial number. The source of any suck information will be kept confidential.

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