pawn stars forum

Soviet Launch Keys

launch keys
  • ICBM stands for Intercontinental Ballistic Missile
  • Deliver multiple warheads at a range over 3500 miles

Rick is really excited!! Where did this guy get these? Is this legal?

He got them from a Russian “Friend” hehe 😉

The guy has paper work, but… he is getting them… they are being sent to him.

This guy is looking for 10k for the keys.

Rick needs to call in an expert.

Mark comes in to see what we got here! He knows they are Russian launch keys right off the bat.

Hmm so this is made of Titanium? Ha so these keys were used for launching space craft. Mark knows his stuff!!

So they are not ICBM keys, but they are soviet shuttle launch keys which is still cool!

Guy wants $10,000… but Rick says $1500… He is gonna keep it.

NO DEAL! I would have kept them too. Pretty cool!


35 Responses to Soviet Launch Keys

  1. Scott says:


    I am the person that originally acquired the launch keys from an active, one star general in the Russian space program. I got the idea while watching a news cast about the dismantling of medium range nuke missiles. My wife was a translator at NASA and I had her translate for me while I asked for them.

    It took a while to get them, but in the end, I had five sets of keys.

    They indeed are ICBM launch keys, I used to own the key used to launch the general into space on his one mission. There is a difference between a space key and a nuke, the space key was longer with a smaller handle.

    I am not knocking their expert, but until I got the keys, no one here had ever seen a Soviet ICBM launch key before. He had nothing to compare it too, and assumed it was a shuttle key.

    Their expert is wrong, but it is easy to see why. Unless you have held both of the keys at once, their differences would not be noticed.

    Just the same, I am glad to see them back in the news again, it was a pinch me moment when the General unwrapped those keys in my dining room that night. I still get chills, knowing that I held the keys to the very gates of hell in my hands.

    Lastly, I can account for four of the five sets of keys. Two are in Texas, one in England and the museum has the other. The first set was sold via a bulletin board back in 1996 before e-bay was around. Some guy bought them sight unseen, relying only on the written description. I have long ago lost his contact information.


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  8. GT says:

    American Pickers could have gotten them for five bucks a piece and sold them and told us about it 😉

    Paid $10.00
    Sold for $10,000.00
    Profit $9,990.00

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  10. Pawn Star says:

    dang so it really was for the ICBM.
    Ha I think RIck would have paid more for them no?

  11. Steve Ririe says:

    My name is Steve and I’m the guy who took the keys to the Pawn Stars show. Above you will read a post from Scott. He is the guy I got the keys from. I believe Scott is 100 percent honest and I have verified his story about the keys being ICBM launch keys in several ways. I am Chairman of the Silent Heroes of the Cold War National Memorial and that is why I purchased the keys from Scott. They will go in an exhibit at the Las Vegas Atomic Testing Musuem (an affiliate museum of the Smithsonian). I have posted more about the keys on my organizations website. Google Silent Heroes of the Cold War.

  12. R Scott says:


    I am the one who purchased the set of Russian Launch keys sight unseen back in 1996 :)from the dealer!my wife said i was NUTS well maybe? i may be putting my set on ebay soon Scott I have been trying to track you down to speak with you i called “JOE”
    that had the set on the show hoping he would have your phone #
    please contact me ASAP need to speak to you or you can email me .. im still on the fence on selling my set i would throw in some KGB and NKVD items to sweeten the deal if i put on EBAY

    many thanks!


  13. R Scott says:

    Rick or chumley,
    my son and i watched the pawn stars show after the missle key show and we saw the dood who tryed to sell the 1800s statue and he started to cause a scene and “Antwone” came from out of nowhere my son howled with laughter and said dad i want that guys autograph!!!! would it be possible to get a pic and autograph of your body guard???? please email me if you can
    love your show!!!

  14. MC Cucchi says:

    I make identical copy’s of these out of 6al4v Titanium. If anyone wants a pair let me know. They will clearly be marked so that they will not be confused with originals, probably with my makers mark on them. They are hand made with NO CNC or other computer controlled lathe or machinery.

  15. The Anomaly says:

    I am interested in buying the set of keys, it seems to be an interesting story, how much are you selling them for?

  16. MC Cucchi says:

    If your interested in a repro pair or a single key go to my sebsite and use the link t the bottom of the front page.

    Website is

  17. chuck says:

    the key show was one of the better ones, not sure how many takes it took to get thru it but I loved it when Ricks Eye browse went up when the expert said launch keys (-:

    next time Im in Vegas I need to stop by znd meet these guys.

  18. ryan says:

    I am interested in purchasing the keys if anyone will contact me. Thanks, Ryan

  19. ryan says:

    Here is my email address since it didn’t show up.

  20. keys says:

    First, Russia never had a functional shuttle, so it’s impossible these are “Russian shuttle keys”. They had the Buran which was sort of a copy of NASA’s shuttle, but it was only “drop-tested” to verify it would glide, it was never launched. Also, despite what Rick’s friend said, titanium isn’t as hard to machine as he wanted to believe (obviously as someone in the comments is selling machined titanium copies). There are fakes of these keys out there, Rick was right to be cautious. Lastly, Rick’s spidey sense was right on when it came to price though. There is a USSR space “artifact” dealer that has one of these keys for $600. The last question though is the kicker. Real keys where reportedly made of steel, 25 year commemorative souvenir keys where supposedly aluminum. So which keys are real?

  21. boxermachine says:

    I hesitate to believe ANYTHING that comes out out Russia.

  22. kyle says:

    you guys are a bunch of con-artists those keys are made out of titanium

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  25. Anthony says:

    And why should we believe you? What is your credibility?

  26. Federico Saggini says:

    I have one of this keys!!!!… It is in a single wooden kit with red velvet; I bought it years and years ago in a show here in my town, Bologna, in Italy. The show was named “Conversia” and was for promote from the soviets for selling of product of military industry converted for civil uses. I bought one of this and can confirm that russian employee tell me that it was the key of an ICBM rocket and NOT of a spaceship from Baikonur. I also bought a pin made with the aluminium of the SS20 dismantled and a military folding canoe. Many other items shows in this appointments was very naive: I remember tanks transformed in snowplow, glass nails and other veeery strange things… going home, the russians lets a gift to our city: a sputnik thet is still in a corner in out exibition pavilion. Some yeas after CCCP collapsed. I saw now the episode on tv and went to serch for the key: it’s still here!!!

  27. he should have took the cash thay have them on ebay now as low as 45$ and there real, due to the fall the keys have flood the market now. none are used anymore the new launch keys are gold in color and hafe the size

  28. Derek says:

    In Soviet Russia, space key pawns you!

  29. Vicki says:

    This is to Scott ….The one flight that the russian space shuttle took was unmanned yet you stated that you used the key to launch the general on his one mission. I am thinking this translates into a lot of disbelief.

  30. eddavid says:

    The keys were used for both shuttle’s and ICBM’s….. R-7 rocket launch key used for all major Soviet/Russian launch vehicles witch includes Space shuttle and ICBM’s who know’s what these keys were actually used for you would have to get a letter from the person you got them from stating what they were used for!!

  31. Ed says:

    I am watching this episode on the history channel right now in the UK

  32. Michael says:

    You may be right yet the shuttle, also known as the orbiter, is simply a part of the entire system which includes the facility for launching it.

    I found a number of articles online about the Russian “Buran” which was their orbiter. The “Buran” did launch on one unmanned flight in 1988 and, according to Wikipedia, was destroyed in 2002 after a hangar collapse. On November 15, 1988, it launched and completed two orbits spending three hours in space.

    We’re watching a television show trying to determine the authenticity of objects none of us can see firsthand, let alone touch or examine. Let’s keep that in mind and remember it’s entertainment.

  33. larry says:

    Thanks for the post and the info.

  34. Russell brown says:

    Hi there I have a set on eBay at the moment
    I machined them,

    COLD WAR Doomsday Soviet ICBM Nuclear Launch Keys
    Look at this on eBay:

    COLD WAR Doomsday Soviet ICBM Nuclear Launch Keys

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