January 26th, 2019

SHOT Show 2019 — Video Showcase

Shot show 2019 video product show demo

There is so much to see at SHOT Show, with nearly 2000 exhibitors showcasing tens of thousands of products. SHOT Show is the largest trade show of its kind in the world, attracting 60,000+ attendees from more than 100 countries.

Thankfully there are many teams of reporters who covered SHOT Show this year, and they’ve now posted a wide selection of video reports. In today’s SHOT Show video showcase, we post our “pick of the litter” — ten of our favorite video reports from SHOT Show 2019, plus one great video “blast from the past”.

High-Tech Hunter — Modular Strasser Rifle

The Strasser rifle from Austria has many interesting design features including an interchangeable bolt head and an easy, rapid barrel-swap system. MORE INFO HERE.

Media Day Mini-Gun Mania — 25 and 50 Rounds per Second!

This full-auto, multi-barrel Mini-Gun has two speeds — 25 and 50 Rounds per Second!

CLICK HERE to SEE NINE More Videos »

Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Gear Review, Handguns, News, Optics, Tactical No Comments »
January 22nd, 2019

Industry Day at the Range 2019 — Highlights

SHOT Show Industry Day at the Range

For folks in the gun industry, the third Monday in January is the best day of the year. Held in conjunction with SHOT Show, Industry Day at the Range lets us try out dozens of new rifles and pistols, as well as meet top gun designers and friends in the shooting sports. We saw some very great new products this year. Here are some of the most interesting “take-aways” from Industry Day at the Range, held in Bolder City, Nevada on January 21, 2019.

New Guns + Old Friends
Meeting old friends, and shooting new guns. That’s what Monday was all about at the annual Industry Day at the Range, a “hands-on” preview the day before SHOT Show opens in Las Vegas. Your Editor met with old buddy Jason Baney and Hunting Editor Colton Reid at the crack of dawn and headed out to the Boulder City (NV) range.

We were not disappointed — there was plenty to see this year. On display were a bunch of new precision rifles, a slew of new handguns, and some very exotic optics (including a turretless digital camera/riflesight).

Cool New Rifles and Chassis Systems

Savage MSR 10 Precision rifle new Stan Pate

Our friend Stan Pate let us try out Savage’s latest, greatest Modern Sporting Rifle, the MSR 10 Precision. Offered in 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5 Creedmoor, and .308 Win, this quality rig has many distinctive features, including side-charging handle, adjustable gas system, and convertible dual-angle pistol grip. This rifle proved exceptionally accurate on steel out to 400 yards. It is certainly one of the best AR10-class rifles we’ve tried.

Report from 6.5 Guys
Our good friends the 6.5 Guys (www.65guys.com) kicked off their 5th year of SHOT Show coverage at the Industry Day at the Range. At this event one can check out the latest firearms, putting guns through their paces with live fire demos. Here are two items that caught the eyes of the 6.5 Guys:

PGW Defense Timberwolf
Timberwolf rifle .338 Lapua Magnum Mag 6.5 Guys Ed Mobley

The PGW Defense Timberwolf rifle in .338 Lapua Magnum proved to be a relatively light-recoiling rifle considering the cartridge and overall rifle weight of 14.5 pounds. Even with gusting 7:00 o’clock side winds (with 20+ mph peaks), hitting targets at 1,000 yards was very doable — a reminder of what the .338 Lapua can deliver. Impressive rifle.

Oryx Chassis for Howa, Rem, Tikka, Ruger, and Savage
Oryx tactical hunting chassis Remington savage tikka Howa 6.5 Guys Ed Mobley

Oryx (an MDT brand) has introduced a chassis system for Howa, Remington, Tikka, Ruger and Savage actions that retails for $399. While it comes with a grip, the user can bolt on standard AR-15 grips. This affordable system comes with an adjustable cheek piece and length of pull.

Media Industry Day at Range SHOT 2019
Industry Day file photo courtesy CMG Marketing & Events.

Optics — New 7-35x56mm Leupold + Radical Israeli Sensight

Leupold showcased an impressive new scope that should interest F-Class and PRS shooters. Leupold’s new 7-35x56mm Mark 5HD optic had very good glass, and positive controls. At 33 ounces, it is quite a bit lighter than other scopes in this class. We don’t have exact pricing yet, but it should be much less expensive than a Nightforce ATACR scope with the same magnification range.

New Leupold 7-35x56mm Mark 5HD
sensight digital camera scope israeli SSR400

The new 7-35X Leupold models will be available with either milrad or MOA adjustments and advanced reticles. The milliradian models will be available in six reticle options: H-59, CCH, TMR, Tremor 3, and Tremor 3 Illuminated. The MOA version will be available with an Impact 60 MOA reticle.

Sensight SSR400 digital Riflesight
sensight digital camera scope israeli SSR400

A big step forward in digital optics is Sensight’s new SSR400 Digital Riflesight, basically a high-resolution digital camera with a microprocessor-controlled reticle. The system is self-contained in a lightweight, compact display that allows the firearm to be held and used as if it held a traditional rifle scope. The digital interface allows users to customize the display, record video, and even livestream the image. The display eliminates eye relief issues, making it easy to acquire targets at distances up to 400 yards. Beyond 400 yards the image becomes noticeably pixelated, but still allowed us to easily hit targets at that distance. The price is moderate.

Read Detailed Sensight SSR400 REVIEW on GunsAmerica.com »

Handguns — Rimfire and Centerfire

Industry day range january 2019

We viewed hundreds of pistols, shot a dozen or so, and came away with four we really liked. Two were suppressed rimfire pistols, and two were centerfire “Race guns”.

Ruger .22 LR MARK IV 22/25 Gold With Suppressor
Industry day range january 2019

We had fun trying out the Ruger MARK IV™ 22/45™ LITE fitted with a factory suppressor. Ruger had a new “bling” version on hand for test shooting. This was the Model 43926, with gold anodized aluminum upper receiver. This is ported for lightness — this pistol weighs just 25 ounces (without suppressor).

KelTec CP33 Suppressed Rimfire Pistol
keltec cmr-30 pistol .22 WMR

We shot a very impressive KelTec pistol derived from the KelTec CMR-30 .22 WMR carbine. This new CP33 pistol is mostly the same as the CMR-30, but with no stock and a different front section. The 33 in the name refers to the fact that the clear magazine holds 33 rounds of .22 LR ammo. The version we shot was suppressed, and it was a pleasure to shoot. The trigger is excellent — noticeably better than most other 22s on the market. With virtually no recoil, it was ultra-quiet and surprisingly accurate. This Editor was surprised that a KelTec was one of his favorite new handguns at Industry Day. KelTec says the first production run should start shipping in March, 2019.

Walther PPQ Q5 Match SF (Steel Frame)
SAS Bul Armory race gun 1911

Walther’s PPQ Q5 has been popular with action pistol competitors. Now Walther offers an enhanced SF (“Steel Frame”) version. We like how the pistol balances with the heavier, beefier steel frame. We expect the extra mass of the steel frame will also reduce muzzle flip and perceived recoil. This is available from Walther with iron sights or a Red Dot.

Bul Armory SAS 1911-Type Race Gun
SAS Bul Armory race gun 1911

Israel’s Bul Armory offers a wide range of defensive handguns and target pistols, including the SAS series of competition pistols. These impressive “Race Guns” feature compensators, relieved slides, flared magwells, and excellent match triggers. Needless to say these comp pistols are a hoot to shot — with superfast cycle rates for fast shot transitions.

Media Industry Day at Range SHOT 2019
Industry Day file photo courtesy CMG Marketing & Events.

Ammunition — Big News from Sierra and More

Sierra Will Offer Loaded Ammunition
The big news in the world of commercial ammunitions come from Sierra bullets. For the first time, Sierra will be offering Sierra-branded loaded ammo. Our good friend (and multi-time Nat’l Long Range Champion) Michelle Gallagher revealed that Sierra will offer a selection of high-quality factory ammunition in 2019.

Sierra Bullets Ammunition gamechanger

Sierra will be releasing its own brand of hunting ammunition. Sierra “Gamechanger” will debut in five popular hunting calibers: .243 Win, 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5 Creedmoor, .270 Win, and .308 Win. The rounds use a new tipped GameKing bullet for match grade accuracy in a hunting round. No details yet on brass, primer, and powder components for this ammo, but if the quality of the bullets is any indication these rounds will serve hunters well.

Norma Bullet monolithic solid hollowpoint

New Norma Monolithic Hollow Point Ammo
Norma unveiled some impressive new pistol ammunition. The new MHP (Monolithic Hollow Point) offers extreme expansion with major energy transfer. This MHP bullet features a lead-free solid core. This new MHP ammo offers serious performance for regions where lead-core bullets are prohibited. Accuracy is also very good with these new Norma bullets.

Great Products for Hunters and Varminters

We saw some impressive gear for game hunters and varminters. Swagger bipods has introduced a new kind of rifle support that combines the best qualities of both a field bipod and shooting sticks. And we saw a nice swivel field bench that offered very good stability.

Swagger Bipod hunting shooting sticks

Swagger demonstrated its new Stalker QD42 (quick detach) and Stalker Lite bipods. The QD42 is a lighter, more compact design of the already-established hunter series that allows for fast attach and removal via the push of a button. The quick attach/detach is a great feature that allows hunters to carry the bipod in their pack until it’s time to shoot. The Stalker Lite offers similar advantages in that it is extremely light and folds up like tent poles so it can be carried in a pack or side pocket. Both systems demonstrate the maneuverability swagger is known for and are reasonably priced.

Swagger Bipod hunting shooting sticks

Many Industry Day exhibitors were using the well-made and versatile DOA Shooting Bench. These benches feature a strong steel base supporting a very stable top that rotates to change rifle aim points in seconds. In addition, the DOA bench features a swivel seat. We liked the build quality on these DOA benches. Varmint hunters would like this bench — it would work well in a prairie dog field.

About Industry Day and the Range

With two dozen shooting bays, plus an elevated shooting station with targets out to 400 yards, there is plenty of action. Here’s the layout:
Media Industry Day at Range SHOT 2019

We definitely need to remember why we are able to continue to own and shoot firearms in this nation…
dog with ear muffs lens

Next best thing to being there — this 5-minute video, produced last year, shows Industry Day highlights. It’s a great overview featuring a wide variety of rifles, pistols and shotguns. The biggest commercial, hands-on “live fire” gun demonstration in the world, Industry Day at the Range is attended by over 1700 journalists and buyers.

keltec cmr-30 pistol .22 WMR

Media Industry day at range shot show 2019 Boulder City Nevada

Permalink Gear Review, Handguns, New Product, News, Optics 2 Comments »
January 23rd, 2018

Industry Day at the Range 2018 — Highlights

SHOT Show Industry Day at the Range

For folks in the gun industry, the third Monday in January is the best day of the year. Held in conjunction with SHOT Show, Industry Day at the Range lets us try out dozens of new rifles and pistols, as well as meet top gun designers and friends in the shooting sports. We saw some very great new products this year. Here are some of the most interesting “take-aways” from Industry Day at the Range, held in Bolder City, Nevada on January 22, 2018.

New Guns + Old Friends
Meeting old friends, and shooting new guns. That’s what Monday was all about at the annual Industry Day at the Range, a “hands-on” preview the day before SHOT Show opens in Las Vegas. Your Editor met with old buddy Jason Baney at the crack of dawn and headed out to the Boulder City (NV) range.

We were not disappointed — there was plenty to see this year. On display were a bunch of new precision rifles, a slew of new handguns, and some very exotic optics.

Most Interesting New Rifles

Tikka T1x — Tikka’s New Rimfire Rifle is a Winner

SHOT Show Industry Day at the Range

The new Tikka T1x doesn’t disappoint. The bolt operates smoothly. The action feels solid and refined — like a good centerfire action. The trigger is excellent — it breaks cleanly with no creep or grittiness, and we’re told it can be easily adjusted below 2 pounds pull weight. The stock has a good feel in the hand and doesn’t flex — unlike some cheap Tupperware stocks you’ll find on some domestic rimfires. In addition, the action has the same footprint as the Tikka T3, so you can swap this .22 LR action into any stock that fits a T3. Overall this was the single rifle this Editor shot on Industry Day that I would really want to own.

Ruger Precision Rimfire — Baby Brother to the Ruger Precision Rifle

Ruger Precision Rifle

We test-fired the new Ruger Precision Rimfire. Unfortunately, with the wobbly setup and no paper targets, we could not really evaluate accuracy. Function is good, but we couldn’t call the bolt movement smooth. The trigger is not bad. Most of the chassis from the handguard rearward is reinforced polymer so the gun is pretty light. The + 30 MOA Picatinny rail is nice.

Ruger Precision Rifle

Above you can see the Ruger Precision Rimfire with its big centerfire brother, the Ruger Precision Rifle. Initial reports say that Ruger’s new rimfire rifle shoots well with affordable .22 LR ammo. Here’s a report from Forum Member RICHK: “Took mine to the range today, and ran eight (8) brands of ammo through it. Three worked really well. The best, Federal Match 22, shot .145 inch groups at 50 yards. Fine rifle.”

SAKO TRG 42 A-1 in .338 Lapua Magnum

Ritter Stark Rifle

Here is a handsome, beautifully-machined big-bore tactical rifle with all the bells and whistles. Firing from a high-tech tripod with Crux Ordnance rifle mount, our buddy Jason drilled steel at 500+ yards with the big .338 Lapua Magnum Sako. It’s awfully nice when you don’t have to pay for the ammo and they don’t mind if you take home the superb Lapua brass. This is a high end rig for serious engagements.

Savage Model 110 Line with AccuFit Comb and Buttpad Inserts

Savage Accufit Accustock

Savage Accufit 110 Stock

Savage Accustock 2018Savage showed off its new-for-2018 Model 110 Line-Up with the new Accufit system of cheekpiece/buttpad extensions that allow shooters to customize comb height and LOP. But, we were more interested in what you can’t see — the new internal aluminum chassis.

As part of Savage’s new Accustock system, a long aluminum sub-chassis serves as a bedding block for the action and provides general stiffening for the stock. That’s smart engineering. This video shows how the Savage internal chassis works. We highly recommend you watch this video:

Ritter & Stark SX-1 Modular Tactical Rifle

Ritter Stark Rifle

We liked the new Ritter and Stark Rifle SX-1 Modular Tactical Rifle from Germany. Fit and finish is very good. This is an honest competitor to the Accuracy International rifles. This rig is designed to allow rapid barrel changes for three chamberings: .308 Winchester, .300 Winchester Magnum, and .338 Lapua Magnum. Ergonomics were good — the grip was comfortable and we like the fact that the butt adjusts for vertical position. Notably, the scope rail is mounted on the barrel itself, and the bolt locks directly into the barrel. This patented system allows scope, rail, and barrel to be swapped out as one integrated assembly, which should definitely help maintain zero when barrels are exchanged.

Kriss Vector SBR — Full-Auto Fun and Firepower

Kriss Vector SBR Gen II 9mm carbine selective machine gun

We got a chance to shoot the 9x19mm version of the Kriss Vector Gen II SBR (Short Barrel Rifle) in FDE (Flat Dark Earth). This is a full-auto, pistol cartridge short-barrel rifle that uses Glock mags. It has a handy fire control selector so you can shoot it in single-shot, two-shot, or full-auto modes. This was a hoot to shoot. We’ve shot full-auto 9mm Uzi subguns in the past and this Kriss was easier to hold on target (and more accurate). Recoil was negligible. This is offered in four calibers: .357 Sig, 9x19mm, 10mm, and .45 ACP. MSRP is $1569.00, but civilians can’t buy this.

Best New Handguns

We viewed hundreds of pistols, shot a dozen or so, and came away with three we really liked. Here is a stunningly expensive 1911-type STI race gun, a handsome new 9mm Kimber, and a very innovative new polymer pistol from Europe, the Archon Type B.

STI 2011 DVC Open Race Gun — Four Grand Worth of Zing and Bling

STI 2011 1911 race competition pistol

At $3999.00, this is probably the most expensive comp pistol we’ve ever seen. This STI 2011 DVC Open features a host of “go-fast” features including relieved slide, gold-tone TiN barrel with extended compensator, over-size Dawson Precision Magwell, mounted C-More 8-MOA optic, and a special lever for fast slide racking. If you want to win, this might be a good investment, but this Editor kept thinking “this pistol costs more than my car is worth…”

Kimber Aegis Pro 9mm with 4″ Barrel

Kimber Aegis Pro 9mm 1911 pistol red dot

This is a 1911-style pistol with some interesting features. It combines a full-size bobtail frame with a shorter 4″ barrel. This makes the gun balance very nicely and it’s a bit more compact for carry. The trigger pull was outstanding, and recoil was mild with the 9mm Luger chambering, so this gun was a pleasure to shoot. This Editor would like to have one of these. The slide is machined to fit a Red Dot sight. For gun games and action pistol comps, the Red Dot really speeds up the aiming process.

Archon Firearms Type B with Ultra-Low Bore Axis

Archon 9mm Luger 9x19mm type B RUAG low bore axis pistol

Developed in Italy, Made in Germany, and backed by the big RUAG company, the new Archon Type B 9mm pistol is one of the most innovative semi-auto handguns we’ve seen in years. The Type B boasts a patented barrel system. It is not the classic Browning tilting barrel. The Type B’s barrel is not fixed; however, it moves only a few millimeters up and back as the slide retracts. That barrel geometry allows the slide to be exceptionally low. And the frame design puts the web of your hand up high. Those design features really do help tame perceived muzzle lift. This gun was easy to shoot, and the sights came back on target very quickly.

Trends in Ammunition

On Industry Day at the Range, all ammo is free. So you can shoot to your heart’s content without worrying about cost (or picking up your brass). This year we noted that many gun-makers supplied Federal Syntec ammo with distinctive red, polymer-encapsulated bullets. The polymer coating cuts barrel fouling, and also reduces ricochets and “splashback” on steel targets:

SHOT Show Industry Day at the Range

Winchester also unveiled an interesting line of Hybrid-X ammunition. This has a dual-element bullet. The rear section of the bullet is jacketed with a heavy element core. The front half of the bullet has a shaped, polymer matrix cone. This hybrid design offers improved penetration PLUS greater energy delivery inside the target as the bullet separates into multiple elements. You can see how this works in the Ballistic Gelatin photo below.

SHOT Show Industry Day at the Range

SHOT Show Industry Day at the Range

Suppressor Tech: Integrally Suppressed Rifle Barrels

SHOT Show Industry Day at the Range suppressor can silencer SWS Suppressed Weapon systems

Suppressed Weapon Systems (SWS) had a rack of rifles with very fat barrels — barrels that served double duty. These barrels are, effectively, extremely long suppressors. The conventional barrel unit is combined with a full-length sound moderator, offering exceptional noise reduction. In the photo above, every rifle in the front side of the rack has an SWS integral suppressor/barrel system. This is interesting technology.

With two dozen shooting bays, plus an elevated shooting station with targets out to 400 yards, there is plenty of action. Here’s the layout:
Media Day at Range SHOT 2018

Next best thing to being there — this 5-minute video, filmed in 2015-16, shows all the activities on Media Day at the Boulder Rifle and Pistol Club. It’s a great overview of the event where over 1700 media members and buyers gather to test and evaluate the latest (and greatest) guns and shooting accessories introductions from over 200 manufacturers.

Media day at range shot show 2018

Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, New Product, News, Tactical 3 Comments »
April 3rd, 2013

SHOT Show Expands Day at the Range to Include Dealers

Industry Media Day at RangeFor 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.”

Industry Media Day at Range

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.

Permalink News No Comments »