Estes- yes, the Model Rocket Guys- save the only Black Powder works in the U.S.
Goex, a name in black powder that goes back to the 19th Century, is set to return to the market with a little help from Estes.
Estes Energetics on Monday announced it had acquired the assets of the Goex brand from the Hodgdon Powder Company, including the only remaining commercial scale black powder factory in the United States. A sister company of the famed model rocket brand, Estes Energetics plans to restart production of black powder at the Goex plant in Minden, Louisiana. Estes had previously used Goex products in its rockets.
“We are extremely excited to extend the relationship with our loyal customers as we ramp up production to satisfy pent-up demand later this year,” said Karl Kulling, CEO of Estes Energetics.
Goex traces its roots back to 1802 when E.I. Du Pont de Nemours broke ground on his original black powder plant along the Brandywine River in Delaware.
Expanding to Belin, Pennsylvania in 1912, the Du Pont works provided military-grade black powder during World Wars I and II, as well as the Korean and Vietnam conflicts. Rebranded as Goex in the early 1970s, the plant was moved to Louisiana in 1997.
Purchased by the Hodgdon Powder Company in 2009, the plant’s processes and equipment were modernized and sold powder under not only the Goex brand but also in the Olde Eynsford and Reenactor labels.
However, Hogdon announced last September that it would cease production and wind down the Goex facility “while an evaluation process on the future of the black powder business takes place.”
Aaron Oelger, the Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Hodgdon Powder Company, talked about the announcement that Hodgdon was closing and selling GOEX Blackpowder, in the below interview last year.