Home History Kes Kessler and National Gun Sports

Kes Kessler and National Gun Sports

Interesting article I came across when looking up NAPRA:

The article focuses on G.M. Kessler (Kes Kessler?) and his company “National Gun Sports Corp” and is dated August 06, 1990.

The patch for National Gun Sports, owned by Kes Kessler out of Virginia.
The patch for National Gun Sports, owned by Kes Kessler out of Virginia (?).

NGS’s (not NSG), most widely used product is likely their unique trigger shoe that many early WGP markers (Sniper 1s and Commandos) and other late 80s pumps used.

But National Gun Sports might be better known for their not so common pump the Savage. I posted this video on the Savage a couple months back.

According to the article link to above, Kessler exported his pumps all over the world and his company was thriving in the several years it existed. Possibly Kesler made more off exports than domestic sales of his Savage since I have only seen a few examples.

One interesting portion of this article even describes Kessler playing paintball in the late 1970’s:
“Kessler first played it in 1977 while he was a civilian worker with the Army in Orlando, Fla.
He and a bunch of other engineers donned cheap overalls and cavorted in a woods, blasting at each other with Nel-Spot CO2 guns, which were designed to mark trees and cattle.
The pellets were filled with oil-based paint, virtually impossible to wash out of the overalls.
For their skin, “You had to take a turpentine bath,” he recalls.”

Last month, Jeff “THE-SHOOTIST” Brooks had messaged me asking about NGS’s Mantis, an undercocking pump that Kessler created and Jeff’s team, The New England Grim Reapers, tested.
Jeff wrote me:
“Somewhere, in some forgotten APG issue of the early 90’s is a very small ad on the left-hand page with a small picture of the Mantis. It ran exactly one issue, maybe two, then it was announced suddenly that the owner of National Gun Sports passed on. Too bad, I saw some awesome potential in that gun.”

Jeff also posted on mcb a while back about the Mantis:
“[National Gun Sports] were really great people, that made some really great products, and were poised to do some real competition with Line SI, Carter and CCI.
In addition to their ‘Savage’ of which I did a T&E for them, but sadly had to give the gun back, they offered me a T&E job on a gun called the ‘Mantis’ which was a bore-drop version, but totally enclosed cocking like a Phantom. That gun was really sweet, and again went back to NGS after I was done. “
Find Jeff’s post at:

If anyone comes across an add they can scan of the Mantis or even has one in their collection please send some photos, I would love to see and share them.

Any memories anyone might have about Kessler or National Gun Sports please post.

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  1. I am the son of Kes, I remember all these things you wrote about in this article. I was surprised to find it. You can contact me if you like.


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