The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), the trade association for the shooting industry, is severing its ties with British-based Reed Exhibitions. On May 9th, NSSF announced that it has reached an agreement with Reed Exhibitions to terminate the contract the parties had for the management of the SHOT Show. Accordingly, effective immediately, Reed Exhibitions will no longer be manager and producer of the SHOT Show. NSSF is now actively engaged in the process of identifying a new show management company to manage and produce the SHOT Show beginning with the 2014 SHOT Show in Las Vegas.
The NSSF stated: “Reed Exhibitions provided excellent service to NSSF and the customers of the SHOT Show for more than three decades, however, the company’s decision to restrict the sale of certain types of firearms this year at its consumer hunting and fishing show — an event unrelated to NSSF and the SHOT Show — was in conflict with NSSF’s mission to serve the shooting sports industry. As a result, both organizations decided it was in the best interest of the SHOT Show to end their relationship.”
Reed Exhibitions had banned AR-platform rifles and other semi-automatic, mag-fed firearms from the 2013 Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show (ESOS) in Pennsylvania. As a result, consumers complained and many exhibitors boycotted the show. Ultimately, the ESOS was postponed. (Related ESOS Story)
The SHOT Show — the Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show — is owned and sponsored by NSSF. It is the largest and most comprehensive trade show for all professionals involved with the shooting sports, hunting and law enforcement industries. The 2014 SHOT Show will be held January 14-17 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas.
For gun-writers, the highlight of SHOT Show each year is Media Day, when we can shoot and evaluate new firearms (and ammo) on a live shooting range. Now this annual event has been expanded to include distributors, dealers, and retailers. SHOT Show Media Day at the Range is expanding to include the first SHOT Show Buyer Day at the Range in 2014. The event will give buyers in the hunting and shooting industry a chance to test and learn about new products. This combined Media/Buyer event will now be referred to as SHOT Show® Industry Day at the Range™.
The first SHOT Show Buyer Day at the Range will take place on Tuesday, January 14, 2014 from 8:00 am to 12:00 pm. The event will be open to 700 invited distributors, dealers, and retailers. “Increasing interest from retail and wholesale buyers to try out new products makes SHOT Show Buyer Day at the Range a natural fit,” said Chris Dolnack, Senior VP and Chief Marketing Officer. “Providing key buyers with a hands-on experience while attending the SHOT Show gives retailers an opportunity to sell new products through first-hand personal experience.”
Regular Media Day Will Precede Buyer Day at the Range
The 9th Annual SHOT Show Media Day at the Range will take place on Monday, January 13, 2014. Media Day will continue to be split into two sessions. The first session will be open to 700 invited media members, while the afternoon session will be open to 700 at-large registered media. With over 140 exhibiting manufactures, Media Day continues to be the largest hands-on media event in the hunting and shooting industry.
Today’s the day — Shooting USA airs its annual one-hour SHOT Show Special today, Wednesday, March 20th, starting at 3:00 pm Eastern (12:00 pm Pacific). Other broadcast times are listed below. You won’t want to miss this hour-long show filmed at the Sands Convention Center in Las Vegas where thousands of exhibitors had their wares on display. Jim Scoutten and his team of reporters feature new products introduced at SHOT Show.
You’ll see new pistols, new rifles, new optics, and other shooting accessories introduced this year. Featured products will include Bergara Barrels, Bushnell Scopes, Les Baer pistols and rifles, Ruger rifles, Savage’s new B.Mag in 17 WSM rimfire, beautiful new handguns from Smith & Wesson’s Performance Center, and many other products.
Here are broadcast schedules for all time zones. If you can’t watch Shooting USA’s SHOT Show Special today, the hour-long show will be re-broadcast early Saturday Morning (Friday Night Pacific Time).
The Shooting USA Hour on Wednesdays:
Eastern Time 3:00 PM, 8:00 PM, 1:00 AM
Central Time 2:00 PM, 7:00 PM, 12:00 AM
Mountain Time 1:00 PM, 6:00 PM, 11:00 PM
Pacific Time 12:00 PM, 5:00 PM, 10:00 PM
The Shooting USA Hour on Saturday Morning/Friday Night
Eastern Time 2:30 AM Sat
Central Time 1:30 AM Sat
Mountain Time 12:30 AM Sat
Pacific Time 11:30 PM Fri
At SHOT Show we checked out the all-new, side-focus 15-55x52mm Competition™ Scope from Nightforce Optics. This comes in both Silver finish and Matte Black. The black version looks like an NXS. The silver looks good but the finish is pretty shiny and contrasts with the black controls (some folks will like that, others won’t). We worked the knobs and side-parallax controls. The clicks are positive and the dial resistance seems just about right (very similar to an NXS). The ED (low-dispersion) glass in the new 15-55X provides high contrast, low chromatic aberration, and 92% light transmission. And this scope is a LOT lighter than the current 12-42x56mm — nearly half a pound less! The new 15-55x52mm sells for $2231.00.
Watch Video to See NF 15-55x52mm Competition Scope (and B.E.A.S.T. sneak preview.)
The big news is that, with a weight of just 27.8 ounces, the new 15-55X Nightforce Competition Scope is 24% lighter than the NF 12-42×56 Benchrest model, and 20% lighter than the NF 12-42×56 NXS. Like the NXS series, the new Competition scope offers side parallax adjustment; and, it will focus from 25 yards to infinity, making it suitable for rimfire and airgun shooting as well as centerfire competition. The turrets provide positive and repeatable .125 MOA (eighth-minute-of-angle) clicks. Each rotation provides 5 MOA of adjustment. And we’re pleased to see that the Competition Scope offers a full 60 MOA of travel — for both windage and elevation. That’s impressive. We’re pleased to see the new scope offers a fast-focus, European-style diopter eyepiece (photo below right). Two reticles will be offered initially: the CTR-1 (fine crosshair with target dot) and DDR (double dot with hold markers). You can see the reticles in the video above.
Thankfully, you won’t have to wait long to get a 15-55x52mm Comp Scope. Nightforce says it will start shipping in mid-February. CLICK HERE for more information.
Story by Lars Dalseide forNRABlog
There were many European exhibitors at the 2013 SHOT Show, including Kruger Premium Targets from Germany. After a successful first run at the 2012 NRA National Rifle & Pistol Championships in Camp Perry, Ohio, the call for Kruger targets has been picking up steam.
“We are always surprised by how many people come to the show,” said Kruger Sales Manager Joachim Seibold. “For us it is a big advantage because so many people stop by our booth. So many orders.” Now with a state side warehouse located in Oregon, their ability to fill those orders promises to be even quicker than before.
Photo by NRABlog
After agreeing to provide the National Rifle Association with targets for the National Championships back in 2010, Kruger has experienced a rise in demand for their product. Especially from the pistol competitions. “I asked many pistol shooters at Camp Perry what they thought about the targets,” explained Seibold. “There were no complaints. Everyone said how pleased they were with the quality. They had no problems seeing the holes, easily scored the targets, and everyone was happy. That’s why the NRA asked us to be their manufacturer.”
That success has created a new demand in the American marketplace. Venturing into the archery industry has been keeping Kruger busy. And a competition target contract with USA Shooting has things humming too. Busy as it is, Kruger has even managed adjust to the strict standards surrounding NRA’s move to the Orion Scoring System. “Yes, we also print targets for the company Orion. Those are in our new Oregon warehouse too,” he concluded with a laugh.
Kruger targets can be ordered online through Kruger-US-Targets.com or you can call Kruger’s USA distributor, MK Tactical, at (503) 746-6816. MK Tactical is located in Hillsborough, OR.
There were many semi-auto “tactical” rifles on display at MEDIA Day 2013, but one that caught our eye was the new MR762A1 LRP from Heckler & Koch (HK). The HK MR762A1 LRP (“Long Range Package”) looks similar to the H&K G28 rifle, Germany’s new Designated Marksman Rifle. But the G28 has a steel upper receiver, unlike the MR762A1, which evolved from the HK 417.
Bedecked with quad rails up front, this black and tan rifle screams “tactical”, yet it is surprisingly comfortable to shoot. The grip is comfortable in the hand and the thick rubber buttpad on the adjustable buttstock did a good job of mitigating recoil. Jason said the trigger was crisp and the gun was very accurate. With a gas-piston system (rather than direct gas impingement), this rifle runs very clean. The proprietary, polymer HK magazine worked perfectly with zero feeding issues. We liked these better than the metal mags we’ve tried on other makers’ AR10-type systems.
The MR762A1 is a direct descendent of the HK416/417 series, only in a semi-automatic rifle configuration developed for civilian users. The MR762A1 LRP employs the same HK proprietary gas piston operating system found on current HK rifles and carbines, using a “pusher” rod in place of the gas tube in the original M16/AR15/AR10 design. According to HK, the op-rod design “virtually eliminates malfunctions common to direct impingement gas systems since hot carbon fouling and waste gases do not enter the receiver area. The MR762A1 stays cleaner, reducing heat transfer to the bolt and bolt carrier, and drastically reducing wear and tear on other critical components.”
The MR762A1 uses the same 10- and 20-round translucent polymer box magazines made for the HK417; a 5-round magazine is also under development. Additional accessories and add-ons for the LRP variant of the MR762A1 include an ERGO Pistol Grip from Falcon Industries, the same Blue Force Gear sling used on the HK M27 IAR supplied to the USMC, and an OTIS cleaning kit. The rifle package, complete with one 20-rd mag and one 10-rd mag, is shipped ready to use with the scope attached in a 42″-long Model 1720 Pelican case.
After a massive boycott by dozens of exhibitors and sponsors, including the NRA and Cabela’s, British-owned Reed Exhibitions has “postponed” 2013 Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show (ESOS). The Show, one of the largest Outdoor Expos on the East Coast, was originally slated to open February 2, 2013 at the Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
The reason for the mass boycott was Reed’s decision to ban the display of AR-platform and similar semi-automatic, magazine-fed rifle systems at ESOS. The announced ban was confusing to many exhibitors because Reed also runs the SHOT Show (for the NSSF) and there was no such ban on ARs in Las Vegas last week. In fact, at SHOT Show, you couldn’t turn your head in the Sands Expo Center without seeing ARs and AR-related hardware on display.
The NSSF stated that it: “is in no way affiliated with, nor does it participate in or exhibit at this show in any way. Reed Exhibitions does, however, manage the NSSF-owned SHOT Show.” Because of Reed’s actions, “NSSF is considering all options regarding the management of future SHOT Shows.”
The NRA declared: “Due to Reed Exhibitions’ refusal to reconsider their decision to ban Modern Sporting Rifles from the February 2-10 Eastern Sports Show in Harrisburg, PA, the National Rifle Association has decided to withdraw from the show. The NRA’s future participation in the Eastern Sports & Outdoor Show will be determined by Reed Exhibitions’ actions in response to the concerns raised by the NRA, the outdoor industry, and America’s law-abiding gun owners.”
At SHOT Show 2013, Lapua announced it was expanding its line-up of Scenar L projectiles to include two new 6.5mm bullets and three new .30-caliber Scenar Ls. We applaud this news. This Editor has tested 6mm Scenar L bullets in his own rifles, and they have proven to be some of the most consistent bullets we have ever measured. The Scenar Ls also shot great in 8-twist barrels from Brux, Krieger, and PacNor.
Two New 6.5mm Scenar Ls
Guys with .260 Rem, 6.5×47, 6.5 Creedmoor, and 6.5-284 rifles have been eagerly awaiting the new 6.5mm Scenar Ls. These will be offered in two weights: 120 grains and 136 grains.
Scenar Ls in .30 Caliber
Lapua will release three new .30-Caliber Scenar L bullets. Along with a new 155gr Palma bullet (GB 552), Lapua will offer a 175gr Scenar L (GB 550), plus a 220gr heavy-weight Scenar L (GB 551). In magnum and short magnum chamberings, the 220-grainers should prove very effective in Long Range comps.
What Makes the Scenar Ls So Good
While all Lapua Scenar bullets are made to exacting standards, Lapua “raised the bar” with its Scanar L series. Scenar L bullets feature closer weight tolerances, tighter jacket wall concentricity standards, and greater uniformity in every dimension. Building bullets this good isn’t easy — you have to get everything right — from the gilding metal cup, to the lead wire and jacket forming, core-jacket assembly, and finally boat-tail pressing and nose-tipping. To build L-series bullets to such high standards, Lapua had to adopt new manufacturing procedures, and install proprietary new machines and advanced instrumentation never seen before in bullet production. Lapua also took its already high quality control standards and kicked them up a notch.
New 6.5mm Scenar Ls — First Look
At SHOT Show, Lapua unveiled its much-awaited new 6.5mm (.264 caliber) Lapua Scenar L bullets. There are two (2) new 6.5mm Scenar Ls: a 120gr tangent ogive design and a 136gr multi-ogive design. These are both all-new bullets, though the new 120gr Scenar L bears a “family resemblance” to the current (and very accurate) 123gr standard Scenar. One look at the new 136-grainer, and you can see that this is NOT just a “tweak” of the popular 139gr standard Scenar. The new 136gr Scenar L has a streamlined secant-ogive shape that blends into a more conventional tangent ogive as the bullet approaches full diameter. This dual-ogive design enhances the bullet’s BC, making it more slippery. That should translate to less drop and less drift at long range.
These new 6.5-caliber Scenar Ls should hit the market very soon. Check with Grafs.com for availability. As soon as we can get our hands on Lapua’s new 120s and 136s we will test them in a 6.5×47 Lapua bench gun and see how they perform. The .30-Cal 175gr and 220gr Scenar-Ls should arrive by late spring according to Kevin Thomas of Lapua. Kevin is a member of our Forum and he can answer your questions about the entire line-up of Lapua projectiles, along with Lapua cartridge brass.
A “pimped-out” Turnbull Manufacturing TAR-10 (AR 10-platform) rifle shattered the all-time SHOT Show Auction record with a high bid of $136,024.00. Proceeds from the auction conducted last week will go to support the NSSF’s Hunting Heritage Trust. This unique Turnbull TAR-10, chambered in .308 Winchester, has features rarely seen on an AR-style rifle: color case-hardening, hand engraving, gold inlay, and select walnut “furniture”. The upper and lower are made from 8620 carbon steel that has been color case-hardened with the Turnbull bone charcoal process.
The gun has been elaborately engraved by Adams and Adams, with extensive gold inlay. The butt-stock, fore-end, and pistol grip are select fancy walnut.
“We did our best to make this a very special rifle and we had hopes of beating the all-time record of $83,025.00, but we never imagined the bidding would surpass $100,000 and then soar to more than $136,000.00,” commented Doug Turnbull.
“Our objective in creating the TAR-10 was to show that the AR platform is more than just a military rifle. We wanted to emphasize that these types of rifles can be made to look like any other custom rifle in terms of appeal,” commented Turnbull. The rifle, as sold, was equipped with a Zeiss 1.5-6x42mm Victory HT scope. Regular production Turnbull TAR-10 rifles will be the same as this special SHOT Show rifle minus the elaborate engraving and presentation-grade wood.
The new RCBS Summit Press attracted a lot of attention when we first revealed it in the Daily Bulletin earlier this month. Readers wanted to know how well this radical new design really worked. To answer that question, we headed to the RCBS booth at SHOT Show 2013. There our buddy Kent Sakamoto gave us complete run-down on the new Summit. With the Summit, unlike other presses, the case does not move. As you can see in the video, the reloading die comes DOWN to the case.
The Summit’s open-front design is definitely a plus, and we really like the fact that all press operations take place ABOVE the benchtop. There are no linkages running below the bench, which lets you use the Summit on a bench with cabinet-style drawers. The Summit press is definitely beefy. With its massive center column, the design operates smoothly with no flexing issues. RCBS says the Summit has no more head flex than the classic “O”-design RockChucker.
The new Summit Press features a rugged cast-iron frame with all-steel linkages. The handle can be switched from right to left side (good for southpaws), and the open-front design provides good access, facilitating quick die changes. The 4.5-inch opening allows you to work with tall cases. Beneath the shell-holder is a spent primer catcher. The press will accept larger bushings for oversize 1-inch dies. Street Price in the new Summit Press is about $220.00 (optional Short Handle is another $19.95).
RCBS Summit Press Features:
• Bench-top operation
• Massive 2-inch diameter ram
• Ambidextrous handle
• Compound leverage
• 4.50-inch operating window
• Spent primer catcher
• Full frontal access
• Accepts bushings for 1″ die bodies
• Press adapter bushing
• Zerk lubrication fitting
• Made in USA
At SHOT Show 2013 we had the chance to chat with legendary barrel-maker John Kreiger of Krieger Barrels. In this wide-ranging interview, John addressed a number of questions our readers often pose…. What is better for a 6mm, 0.236″ land or 0.237″ land? What are the pros/cons of various barrel types: 3-groove, 4-groove, 6-groove, 8-groove, and 5R? What types of land/groove configurations clean up more easily? (John says the 5R might be the winner there).
John also discusses barrel cleaning and he explains why it’s unwise to pull a dirty brush back across your delicate crown: “The problem comes from the fact that abrasive materials — powder and primer residues in particular — get embedded in the brush. Essentially that is how a lap works.”
When we suggested that Krieger Barrels might want to offer three-groove barrels in the future, John surprised us by revealing that he has been considering putting a 3-groove design into production. John says that, in theory at least, a canted-land 3-groove holds a lot of promise. John hopes to build some prototype 3-grooves to test. Krieger Barrels has a 300-yard underground tunnel where barrels with various land/groove configurations and calibers can be tested using a return-to-battery fixture. John admits that tunnel testing of barrels is “on the back burner” as his company focuses on filling orders. But he says that he has a strong personal interest in testing different land/groove configurations, different amounts of choke, and different internal dimensions. We hope we’ll be able to share some results from the Krieger Barrels test tunnel in the near future.
SHOT Show 2013 has been underway since Monday. This show seems bigger than ever, and the sheer number of noteworthy products on display is mind-boggling. We’ve seen some remarkable new scopes from Nightforce, Kahles, and IOR-Valdada. Dave Kiff at PT&G has some “game-changing” new products. Winchester’s new 17 Win Super Mag rimfire cartridge has generated lots of interest, and Savage showed off its new B.MAG bolt action chambered for the new cartridge.
Here’s a quick sample of some cool or interesting products we saw in action on Media Day or on display inside the Sands Convention Center. We’ll do more complete write-ups/reviews once we “back to the office” and have a change to digest spec sheets and edit video. But please enjoy this photo “sampler” from SHOT Show 2013.
New Kahles 10-50X Competition Scope, with Central (big wheel) Parallax Adjustment
New Savage B.MAG Rifle Chambered in 17 Win Super Mag Rimfire
Prototype “Tinkertoy” Benchrest Rifle from McMillan Built on “Alias” Action
New Datum Dial Ammunition Measurement System from Forster Products
New .338 Lapua Magnum Action and Complete .338 LM Rifles from Kelbly’s
New Savage Bolt from PT&G with User-Adjustable Spring Tension
Futuristic $22K Tracking-Point Rifle System with Automatic Ranging, Ballistic Calculation, and Aiming Solution
New .375 Caliber, 350 grain, ultra-high-BC Match-King Bullet from Sierra
Vectronix Laser Rangefinder Units ($1995.00 – $8510.00)
Air Arms S400 Multi-Purpose Rifles (Regular and Biathlon Models)
Accuracy Int’l PSR Multi-Caliber Rifle System — ‘Takedown Edition’ in .338 LM