In honor of Stefan Weihrauch…

Monday, October 26, 2015

Weihrauch LogoAs you may have read in an earlier blog post of mine the joy that was brought to me with the return of my beloved HW35L model rifle that was stolen and then recovered some 25 plus years later. The maker of my childhood sweetheart is of course the firm HW, short for Hans Weihrauch. Weihrauch in German translation means ‘smoke house’, an appropriate name for a gun company. Many thousands of satisfied air gunners take pride in their HW rifle and/or pistol the world over, so it is safe to say that Weihrauch has and continues to be the stalwart of airgun manufacturing, design, and production.

I not only admire and appreciate the products produced by this family-run factory, but I have also been blessed to be able to spend personal and professional time with the owner brothers Hans and Stefan Weihrauch.  These men are both honorable, honest family-first human beings that have a passion for bringing us the best in quality and performance at a fair price. I look forward each year to meeting with  these men at the IWA show in Nuremberg. I can tell you that the customer and quality-first attitude is always present in any of our discussions. The last three years at IWA myself, my wife Staci, Marcus Gehmann, Volker Friedrich and Stefan Weihrauch have shared an evening meal together, laughing about who knows what while dinning on fine German fair and quaffing a local brew. This year’s topic was our favorite rock and roll bands with the Eagles and Lynyrd Skynyrd getting most of the play. Free Bird was of course at the top of the list for all!

Stefan Weihrauch

Stefan Weihrauch

Funny how life brings to each and every one of us opportunities. Lord knows I have been blessed with many opportunities. Also with joy, sadness, fear and bravery. Every time a big event in life happens it seems to come from out of the blue and it makes getting up in the morning exciting. As J.R.R. Tolkien’s Bilbo Baggins said,

“Its a dangerous business… going out of your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.”

A few months ago I received an email that hit me up side my head like a baseball bat. My friend, Stefan Weihrauch had unexpectedly passed away. Stefan leaves behind  family and friends that will miss him with hurting hearts and multitudes of people that will continue to  love him every time they send a pellet down range with their treasured HW airgun. Fly away Stefan, you are indeed a Free Bird.

With respect,

Robert Buchanan

President, Airguns of Arizona


  1. Bob Hopfner says:

    I bought an HW77 in Germany in 1985. It was stolen from my Dad’s house in 2005. I really hope that I am as fortunate as you to one day be reunited with that gun. My grandmother purchased it for me when I was 16. I am 46 now and not a day goes by I don’t miss shooting that fine, fine gun. Mr. Weihrauch was a way too young to pass away and that is a far greater loss than even the nicest air rifle.

  2. Dennis J. Aitken says:

    It is always hard to hear that someone of his skills and integrity has passed away.
    Be it known that he has earned his wings being down here 56 years but his passion will live on forever with the quality that was produced during his time.
    I am only back into air rifles just 1 year after being out for some time. I have heard many good things about the HW line and after reading this short eulogy I find that there was a great family behind the products also.
    Our thoughts will be with the family each time I see a post mentioning the HW.

  3. RidgeRunner says:

    I am saddened to hear of your personal loss and also of the loss to the world of airguns.

  4. Dan D says:

    I am sad to hear of the loss of this good man. I only know him through his integrity which I experience every time I handle an HW product. It is wonderful that you had the opportunity to share good times with him.
    I am sorry for your loss.

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