SHOT Show 2013 was a little different from most years in that almost everything was sold out for the next 6-9 months out and some manufacturers even decided to not unveil new products because of the legal environment, but that doesn’t mean the show was a bust. There were still a lot of great products, people and discussions to be found!
Top 3 Legal/Political Discussions from SHOT
#3. Of course the new draconian legislation was a major topic of conversation, but at the new media lunch sponsored by Brownells, 27 new media attendees had an opportunity to talk about our impact in the debate and what we could do to move the message forward and control the narrative.
#2. 80% lower parties have been deemed illegal by the BATFE and they are ACTIVELY raiding.
It has been deemed that if the seller calls it a receiver, it is a receiver and that the intent is the important thing, so a 50%, 80%, 95% receiver is a receiver and needs to be stamped and it is the gun.
#1. Ruger is still thought of by some in the community in terms of Bill Ruger’s famous interview with Tom Brokaw where he said…
- “No honest man needs more than 10 rounds in any gun.”
- “I never meant for simple civilians to have my 20 or 30 round magazines or my folding stock.”
- “I see nothing wrong with waiting periods.”
Well… as Michael Bane recently remarked in the comments on his blog…
Mr. Ruger is long gone. If you want to discuss this with him, you’ll need a psychic.
Ruger has come a long way since 1994, and had terminals in the booth to allow visitor to contact their representatives from the floor of the show.
You can use the same app on their website here… http://www.ruger.com/micros/advocacy/
Most Interesting Firearms
One of the exciting things about the SHOT show is that it is so big that you can spend 4 days looking at only things that interest you and you still can’t see everything you had on your list.
This year we want to explore a few topics further including, long-guns for defense, 1x optics, stealth gun bags, holster reviews, CCW pistols and more.
Among the most discussed weapons of the show were 3 guns that used the AR-15 magazine in 3 different platforms.
Daniel Defense ISR Integrally Suppressed Rifle – At the Media day, Daniel Defense showed an integrally suppressed AR-15 rifle chambered in 300 blackout.At this show I spent a lot of time speaking with EAR Inc, AAC and a person formally tied to Silencerco about the damage to hearing that could be caused by touching off a 5.56 round in a small hallway, for both the shooter and those he is protecting,The ISR combines a subsonic round with sound suppression, and creates a great home defense weapon, that is familiar to most, with a single tax stamp.
Israel Weapon Industries’ Tavor – The Tavor is a bull-pup design (the action is behind the trigger) and this usually results in a very compact package, but is plagued by a poor trigger due to its long linkage, poor ergonomics due to the mag well placement and difficulty shooting from the opposite side.It appears that the issues with the trigger might have been fixed, the ergonomics have been figured out and many war fighters have abandoned the technique of switching sides due to the time.
There are few US trainers that currently advocate full-time string side shooting, but the Israeli military and many marines have! Looks interesting!
Mossburg MVP Patrol in .223 – So this rifle wasn’t talked about as much as I thought it should have been. Maybe because it was in .223, maybe because it was Mossburg, or maybe it was because there is little legal risk to the bolt gun currently, but this is the gun I thought the Ruger Scout Rifle should have been.
This rifle has the flash hider that is becoming extremely on all rifles. While the do reduce the visible flash to the shooter, their real genius isn’t obvious to most… they provide a threaded barrel for easy installation of a suppressor! It also has a reasonable set of sights and should be at least as accurate as an AK, but it has too attributes not found on other guns of this style…
1) It has a standard rifle scope position. I sort of like the scout rifle scope position, but there are limited sights with the long eye relief and I believe that their value is diminished with the introduction of good 1-4,6,8x optics.
2) IT TAKES AR MAGS!!! and when the 7.62 is released it will take common mags as well!
There were also a couple of non-5.56 guns that made a splash too. Sig MPX for example, is a pistol caliber carbine designed to feel like an AR for anyone used to the platform, but it is easily convertible from 9mm (cheap) to 40S&W (common in law enforcement) to .357 Sig (which should defeat most body armor out of a longer barrel). This should be a great assault rifle for SWAT teams… yeah I used the term, but I used it correctly (full-auto).
The really interesting thing for the civilian interested in home defense though is that the carbine variant has a 6.5′ barrel with 9.5″ muzzle brake permanently attached…
You: Huh? The muzzle break is 3″ longer than the barrel?
Yep! The “Muzzle Break” is actually a permanently attached silencer core, so you could pay your money for the tax stamp, slide the tube over the core and cap it and you have another suppressed SBR with a single tax stamp.
Rumor Alert – While I was at the Remington booth talking about the new 783 (which by the way had a 1 MOA design goal and could easily be made into a real shooter with the Shilen barrels in development) I asked about the possibility of a factory “Liberty Training Rifle” for use with Project Appleseed. I was told they were working together and that there would be one based on the 597.
The undeniable star of the show was the Glock 30s with its thinner slide and hi-capacity.
Ok I am lying, Glock and the 30s were likely the joke of the show (followed closely by a single shot, .410 pistol). There are plenty of rumors that they have factory slide mounted optics guns like the M&P CORE’s in development, they weren’t there. There is a ton of demand for a .22lr trainer and a single stack 9mm, they weren’t built…
Springfield did listen though and finally released the 9mm single stack XDs. I felt it and I have to admit I didn’t hate it. (Shhhh, I actually liked it, but I am still not a fan of the grip safety or the box of cheap accessories or the fact they are made in Croatia under the name of our military’s most famous armory.) If that doesn’t matter to you, it is worth a look, if it does buy a M&P Shield.
Ruger zigged again when others were zagging and introduced the Ruger LC380. This is a .380ACP version of the popular LC9. This could be a good choice for the shooter comfortable with .380 and either has large hands or is really recoil sensitive. I don’t really get it, but I’m not hte target market either.
The Walther PPX is priced to compete in the $500 polymer 9mm market with Glock and Smith & Wesson.
The trigger on this gun is great and they have gone to a more traditional style mag release which is good for skill portability and it fits in the hand nicely.
However I’m not a big fan of 1913 style rails on a hand gun because of the opportunity to snag and the grip looks like it was designed by Kathy Bates. Not my favorite… and I shot Glocks.
Even though it seems like it, the SHOT Show isn’t all about guns and there were 3 other trends that I noticed and thought were interesting…
1. 3 companies were showing new bags for low-key carry of long guns. Comp-tac had their new Trojan Horse long gun case which allows for a carbine to be carried assembled in an over-sized tennis racquet case. BLACKHAWK! gives up a little in accessibly but gains a little in stealth with their new tennis racquet themes bag, which requires the gun to be disassembled.
2. Many companies were offering new holster products in new materials. For example, Blade-tech was showing its long-awaited appendix carry holster and new injection moulded models. BLACKHAWK! was showing a level 2 holster that didn’t require pressing towards the trigger. HT Holsters were showing a nylon filled injection molded holsters with new level 2 and 3 locks. And N8^2 Tactical’s Pro Series use acrylic and a twist to unlock the holster.
3. Woodland is out, Multi-cam seems to be exiting with he zombies, and A-tacs and Kryptex camos seem to be everywhere.
What have you seen from the SHOT Show that you were excited about or just made you shake your head?
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