DoubleTap Defense filed a $6 million lawsuit against the company it previously contracted to manufacture its much anticipated design, a new tactical derringer. The company sued Heizer Defense on Jan. 3 to prevent further development and manufacturing of products based on the inventor of the DoubleTap’s, Ray Kohout, intellectual property.
The companies, both located in the St. Louis, Missouri, area, split up in November and both have blamed the other for the break up. DoubleTap said it called it quits when it saw Heizer’s “inability to fulfill its manufacturing obligations.” And Heizer said (in a press release dated Nov. 7) that it was unable to complete the order because it would not distribute a product until it met its own safety and quality standards.
The focus of the lawsuit, as far as Guns.com can tell, is currently both companies market a similar — damn near identical — product: a two-barreled concealed carry pistol made out of lightweight material, like aluminum or titanium, and has an interchangeable barrel. As long as it has the appropriate barrel, the gun is capable of firing either 9mm or .45 ACP cartridges.
The DoubleTap design was revealed at the National Association of Sporting Goods Wholesalers show in November 2011. Although it was a hit at all the following trade shows like the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s 2012 Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show and the 2012 National Rifle Association convention, only one review (by Guns & Ammo, which touted “a million would be sold”), and one actual video of it in action was released. In addition to that, the then “Heizer DoubleTap” was later marketed in a new color, despite it never hitting store shelves.
Heizer suggests that the failure to produce was not entirely its fault. “The final experimental models, which Heizer Defense has actually produced, were much smaller and lighter than originally proposed. The efforts to achieve this caused delays in production,” Founder and President of Heizer Defense Charles Heizer said. “Since Heizer Defense was responsible for the final engineering and manufacturing of the pistol, we would not allow the commercial distribution of the pistol until we were 100 percent certain that it was absolutely safe and free from defects.”
Since the relationship ended, DoubleTap Defense began working with Azimuth Technologies, a Florida company, to manufacture its “new and improved” tactical pocket pistol and anticipates shipping units to distributors in the first quarter of 2013.
In addition, Heizer Defense has announced that it will be revealing a new product during the upcoming SHOT Show in Las Vegas Jan. 14 to 18.
Stay tuned to Guns.com for coverage of SHOT and more on this story as it develops.