How it all began…
It was a rainy Thursday afternoon more than ten years ago. I was heading home from my work thinking about my life, what I had achieved, what I planned to reach at the age of 27. I was working for a multinational company by that time as a business developement manager, earning enough that I did not have to worry about my future. However I was anything but happy. I graduated as a history teacher at the Teacher Training Faculty of Eötvös Lóránd University, but I immediately left the road I had chosen when I was 18 to earn money and make a living. That was a tough decision, but a useful one. Although I was not happy, I learned a lot from embarking on that short but successful career in the business world.
The raindrops were dripping from my hair straight in my eyes. I knew I had to change something. That year was the second that I had been a member of the Hungarian National Muzzleloading Team. Blackpowder shooting was always the escape route from the money world, and this was the only tie that connected me to history and the dream I had when I chose too become a teacher.
“Our vision is simple: to serve the blackpowder shooters, reloaders, collectors and hunters with the best available knowledge and products. That’s it, no more.”
Sometimes the most difficult questions turn to simplicity in moments – and this happened to me that rainy day as well. I decided to connect my business knowledge with history and blackpowder shooting. The idea was followed by plans, the plans were followed by actions, and our company, established together with my brother Viktor, took its first steps ahead.
Our key partners
I already knew Pierangelo Pedersoli. We met several times on international blackpowder shooting matches and I have already written many articles about his fine reproduction guns and their history for Hungarian firearms magazines. I wanted to start with the best available repros on the market, so it was an obvious decision to contact him. It was a risky decision for him to start business with us as we were complete beginners in the gun market. But he trusted us from the first moment we met and this was the key in making our business successful. Just two years later we received the respected „Blackpowder No. 1” title from the Pedersoli company, marking those dealers who serve well and care about their customers at the highest possible levels.
We needed a partner on the percussion revolver market as well, so we started a fruitful partnership with Uberti. We grew together with the Hungarian blackpowder shooting sports, and we turned in all the profit we made to develop the historical firearms sports and market. This was the time when we started supporting the Hungarian Blackpowder Shoooting and Hunting Association, and we are especially proud that we were part of the success of the Hungarian shooters winning medals at international matches.
When the great economic crisis hit the markets all around the world in 2008, all the players of the business went into defence – but not us. I went back to university to get a second degree. I learned military history plus defence and security sciences at the Officer Training Faculty of the National Public Service University. We invested in the future in the meantime. Before 2012 reloading was illegal in Hungary but we were working hard to push it through the legislation process. Nobody believed in its success except for us. We walked forward blind. We established fruitful partnerships with key players of the market like Lyman Products, Lee Precision and Sierra – and we were right. Our company is the first and only company to offer a/the full line of quality reloading equipment in Hungary, and one of the very few companies organizing reloading courses teamed up with the Hungarian CIP office.
How we work
We were always a market-driven company focusing on the most modern state of the art advertising techniques while offering a tremendous amount of free content to our readers, customers. Our webpages – both the Hungarian kapszli.hu and the English www.capanball.eu – are already loaded with a huge amount of information, articles, and videos about military history, blackpowder shooting, muzzleloading and other historical guns and reloading. We continue to publish minimum one or two articles per week to satiate our readers’, visitors’ and customers’ hunger for knowledge.
“Pedersoli, Uberti, Lee, Lyman, Sierra, Nosler. Quality brands with affordable prices.”
An important part of our on-line activities is the management of our YouTube channel. This little military history channel is maybe not as great as other firearms related TVs, but we surely aim to offer the highest level of scientific value we are capable of.
Servicing our customers
The story of our company is connected to national and international blackpowder shooting organizations with a thousand ties. In 2005, I was elected chairman of the Hungarian association and later I became a member of the board of the Hungarian Sportshooting Federation. Another great responsibility is being a member of the MLAIC Comission, that I have been for five years now – and the community we serve deserves great respect. There is not a day when I don’t learn something important from the shooters and hunters we serve.
My public service – working for the shooters, hunters – is an important part of everday work and I try to do the best I can. I try to behave like the old Indian chiefs did, who were riding in front of their army in battle leading by example. That’s why I’ve been a member of the Hungarian National Muzzleloading Team for 10 years now. Great friendships evolved from blackpowder shooting that I will cherish all my life. Standing together with a friend on the podium and seeing the national tricolor being raised is a experience one can never forget. Winning a medal is a great joy, but representing a nation with fair sportsmanship is the greatest achievement possible.
Throughout these years, I published many hundreds of pages of articles and what began as gun reviews evolved into military history research projects. Silently my work started to be recognized by the highest level military historians. Now, reloading, blackpowder target shooting, military history and hunting with muzzleloaders are evenly important parts of my life.
The marketing mastermind behind the company are my wife Brigitte and my brother Viktor. They are both experts of online media. They know much more about Internet and the digital world than I will ever know. They are the ones who help me lift the dreams from the ground.
I am especially proud of the people I work with. My shopkeeper and editor is Gábor Szabó, a young sociologist and PhD candidate. His enthusiasm, empathy with people moved our company to a higher level. We are lucky guys. Our job is our hobby, therefore we do not work a moment in our lives. The joy of working for the blackpowder shooters, hunters, collectors and reloaders provides us with great energies we can take home to our families even at the hardest times.
I have a great family. The strong woman behind me – my wife Brigitte – supports the way I chose to live just as I support her. She is a Pilates conductor working with women recovering from breast cancer. We have two children, a beautiful princess and a little chevalier. I really hope one day one of them will take over the family business, but our most important role is to teach them the values we learned throughout all these years.
Today I am still living my childhood dream. While running the company I am doing my PhD in military sciences, while I am honoured to teach military history at the Public Service University Officer Training Faculty.
Our company is basically an online business, but we also have our little sanctuary in central Budapest. Our small showroom is the frequent meeting point of all the people involved in historical shooting, traditional hunting, collecting and reloading. With a gentle atmosphere, small coffee- shop beside the store, we are happy to invite every fellow enthusiast to stop the rush of everyday life for a second. If you are in Budapest, please stop by our store and have a coffee with us.
It’s ten years ago today that we started our company and it is raining again. But we are happy people here today and if we can share some of this joywith you through our webpage , we will be happy. It does not matter if you spend money in our store or not. It is enough if you enjoy what we do. So please register on our page, share your opinion about our articles, webpage, activities. Help us to improve.
So what can I say? Step into the world of historical shooting and hunting. You will never regret it.
owner, general manager