May 5th, 2021

Smith & Wesson Will Sell Off Thompson/Center Arms Business

smith wesson thompson center arms T/C sale divest divestiture Massachusetts

Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc. (NASDAQ: SWBI) plans to divest (sell off) its Thompson/Center Arms (T/C) brand. This T/C divestiture as part of a “broader strategic plan” by Smith & Wesson to focus on its core S&W brands. So soon Thompson/Center rifles, muzzleloaders, and single-shot pistols will no longer be produced by Smith and Wesson. Accordingly, if you’ve been thinking about getting a T/C gun, now may be a good time to buy. We predict inventories will be sold off at discounted prices. NOTE: S&W remains committed to providing customer service to current T/C gun owners.

Smith & Wesson President/CEO Mark Smith declared: “Thompson/Center is a beloved hunting brand with a longstanding heritage, and we are committed to ensuring a smooth transition. Thompson/Center Arms’ loyal consumers should rest assured that they will continue to receive the world-class firearms, accessories, and customer service support that the brand has been known for since its founding in 1965. We remain fully committed to the hunting and long-range shooting market, and with this divestiture we will be able to now focus on these categories under our iconic Smith & Wesson brand. Additionally, this will allow us to immediately redirect manufacturing capacity to increase overall production volumes, allowing us to gain additional market share[.]”

No Buyer Currently for Thompson/Center Arms
At this time, a buyer for the Thompson/Center Arms brand has not been identified. However, the divestiture is not expected to have a material financial impact on S&W’s first quarter fiscal year 2022 results. S&W expects the divestiture “to be accretive to the Company’s full year fiscal 2022 through higher overall production levels, increased margins, and lower marketing costs”. The Company states that this decision will NOT result in a workforce reduction as it will “repurpose capacity immediately” to other areas.

Thompson/Center Arms — Types of Firearms Currently Produced

Thompson/Center Arms produces a wide range of firearms including bolt-action rifles, semi-auto rimfire rifles, muzzle-loaders, plus T/C Encore rifles and pistols. Expect all these firearms to be discounted heavily in the months ahead. CLICK HERE to see the full line-up of T/C firearms at TCArms.com.

smith wesson thompson center arms T/C sale divest divestiture Massachusetts

About Smith & Wesson Brands
Smith & Wesson Brands is a leader in firearm manufacturing and design, delivering a broad portfolio of handgun, long gun, and suppressor products to the global consumer and professional markets under the iconic Smith & Wesson, M&P, and Gemtech brands. The Company also provides manufacturing services, including forging, machining, and precision plastic injection molding services.

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January 27th, 2021

Gunsmarts Video Series from S&W — Safety and Gun Handling

Smith Wesson gunsmarts safety pistol shooting sights grip stance training videos

Do you know someone getting started in the shooting sports? Or perhaps you know shotgun or rifle shooters who want to improve their handgun skills because they have obtained CCW pistol permits? Then here is a good resource for those shooters-in-training. Smith & Wesson GUNSMARTS is a new video series that covers the key points of firearm ownership, from purchasing a pistol, to shooting techniques, gun safety, and storage. While this 38-part series does include some rifle-centric videos, it is mostly focused on handgun training, as you might expect from Smith & Wesson.

CLICK HERE to Watch All 38 S&W Gunsmarts Videos »

The GUNSMARTS series has 38 different videos covering gun safety, gun operation, marksmanship, maintenance, and secure storage. There are both general videos about gun handling and very specific videos about topics such as sight alignment, magazine loading, optics and more. Here are six of the best videos in the series. You will find 32 more on the Smith & Wesson Gunsmarts Playlist Page.

10 Tips for Your First Visit to the Range

Shooting Fundamentals — Sight Picture and Sight Alignment

Handgun Skills — Grip Pressure

Concealed Carry Positions and Holster/Belt Options

Considerations When Purchasing Your First Firearm

Smith Wesson gunsmarts safety pistol shooting sights grip stance training videos

Smith Wesson gunsmarts safety pistol shooting sights grip stance training videos

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December 8th, 2020

Smith & Wesson Will Donate $500,000 to NSSF

Smith Wesson Brands NSSF national shooting sports foundation $500,000 donation

Now this is definitely “putting your money where your mouth is”. Kudos to Smith & Wesson for helping fund the NSSF at a time when our gun rights are being seriously challenged at Federal, State, and local levels.

Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc. announced today that it will donate $500,000 to the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) to help fund the Foundation’s continued efforts to advocate gun rights and support the firearms industry. SW declared that “The work that the NSSF performs on behalf of the firearms industry is unparalleled and [it] been instrumental to ensuring the success of the industry for almost 60 years.” This $500K donation adds to another half-million dollars S&W has given to the NSSF over the past 11 months.

“When the NSSF decided to cancel the 2021 SHOT Show, we felt it was important to show them that we stand behind them during these challenging times. Smith & Wesson fully supports the NSSF and the work that they continue to do on behalf of our industry”, said Mark Smith, S&W President and CEO. “The National Shooting Sports Foundation is a strong advocate for the Second Amendment and helps promote hunting and the shooting sports. Smith & Wesson is proud to have donated over $1 million in 2020 to support [NSSF] efforts.”

Smith Wesson Brands NSSF national shooting sports foundation $500,000 donation

About Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc.
Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc. (NASDAQ Global Select: SWBI) is a U.S.-based leader in firearm manufacturing, delivering a broad portfolio of quality handgun, long gun, and suppressor products to the global consumer and professional markets under the iconic Smith & Wesson®, M&P, Thompson/Center Arms, and Gemtech brands. The company also provides manufacturing services including forging, machining, and precision plastic injection molding services.

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November 11th, 2020

Revolver Showdown — Miculek Shoots S&W, Colt, & Ruger

Jerry Miculek smith wesson colt python wheelgun ruger revolver showdown
Hornady sponsored shooter Jerry Miculek — Yamil Sued Photo.

If you are considering acquiring a revolver for fun shooting, self-defense, or competition, you should definitely watch this YouTube video. In this 23-minute presentation, legendary shooter Jerry Miculek puts three .357/.38 SPL wheelguns through their paces. Jerry, one of the greatest revolver shooters in history, hosts a “Revolver Showdown” with three popular wheelguns: 1) S&W L frame (3″ bbl); 2) Colt Python (6″ bbl); and 3) Ruger Speed Six (2.75″ bbl).

Smith & Wesson Model 686 Plus, L-Frame, 7-rd .357 Magnum/38 SPL, 3″ Barrel.
Jerry Miculek Revolver showdown comparison S&W Colt Ruger

Colt Python (Nickel), 6-rd .357 Magnum/38 SPL, 6″ Barrel.
Jerry Miculek Revolver showdown comparison S&W Colt Ruger

Ruger Speed Six, 6-rd .357 Magnum/38 SPL, 3″ Barrel.
Jerry Miculek Revolver showdown comparison S&W Colt Ruger

Jerry Miculek Revolver showdown comparison S&W Colt RugerTesting at 10 Yards and 50 Yards
In the video, Jerry shoots all three revolvers rapid-fire, double-action at 10 yards. Then he shoots the three guns single-action, slow-fire at 50 yards (starting at time mark 7:19).

After his range session, Jerry examines nine medium frame revolvers, comparing and contrasting design features. Jerry considers these factors:

1. Accuracy
2. Balance and Handling
3. Speed and Sureness of Trigger Return (watch video at 3:45″ re Colt.)
4. Reliability
5. Barrel Twist Rate
6. Strength of Construction/Durability

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October 12th, 2020

Bargain Finder 264: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

AccurateShooter Deals of the Week Weekly Bargain Finder Sale Discount Savings

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Sportsman’s Warehouse — Tikka T3x SS Superlite, $699.99

tikka rifle sale
Very good choice for hunting rifle — light, accurate, good action

We are fans of Tikka rifles for hunting. Build quality is good, and Tikkas have nice triggers and smooth-running actions. The Tikka T3x SS Superlite Rifle, a Sportsman’s Warehouse exclusive, is now on sale for $699.99 — a $100 savings off the regular price. Offered in numerous chamberings, this rifle features stainless action and barrel, light overall weight, and nice, 2-4 lb. adjustable trigger. Weight (without scope) is just 5.9 pounds. The T3x has a “noise reduction” synthetic stock.

2. Amazon — Tipton Ultra Gun Vise, $129.95

tipton gun vise
Very strong and versatile — use for all kinds of firearms

You need a solid, secure platform to clean and work on your guns. Most gun cleaning stands aren’t adjustable enough or are too flimsy. Not so with the Tipton Ultra Gun Vise. Weighing-in at about 10 pounds, this beefy gun vise provides a steady base. The frame is metal for strength. This Ultra Vise boasts stout adjustable jaws, specialized AR holder, and several accessory trays. Threaded feet allow the vise to be leveled on your bench. With this system you can work on just about anything including bolt-action rifles, AR-platform rifles, shotguns, pistols, and even compound bows. To fit wide forearms, you may have to remove or modify the front pads. Our Deals Editor, who owns this gun vise, reports this is an outstanding product, well worth the $129.95.

3. Sportsman’s Warehouse — Leupold Scope Sale with Gift Cards

leupold scope sale
Great prices on Leupold scopes — cash gift cards too

Hunting season is upon us. If you’re looking for a tough, “go anywhere and never lose its zero” hunting scope, think Leupold. Sportsman’s Warehouse is running a Leupold Gold Event Sale right now. You’ll find riflescopes, binoculars and more at very good prices. PLUS you’ll earn free gift cards worth $10, $25, $50, or $75 depending on how much you spend.

4. Midsouth — SAE/Metric/Hex/Torx P-Handle Driver Set, $43.99

wheeler tool hit

Nearly every firearm, press, ring set, or other gun accessory relies on hex or torx wrenches. You need the right tools for the job. Check out this SAE/Metric/Hex/Torx P-Handle Driver Set 30 Piece tool kit at Midsouth. It features popular driver types/sizes you’ll need, held in a convenient stand. These special “P-handle” drivers provide two different lengths and leverages ensuring you’re always in control of any threaded fastener.

5. CDNN — S&W SW22 Victory Pistol + Range Kit, $389.88

smith wesson range kit
Everyone needs a good .22 LR pistol — this is complete kit

Everyone should own a good .22 LR pistol. Rimfire pistols are fun and great for training. Plus .22 LR ammo is cheap! If you’ve been looking for a nice, yet affordable .22 LR pistol, the Smith & Wesson SW22 Victory is a good option. And right now you can get a complete SW22 Victory Pistol plus STS RANGE KIT for just $389.88. Not only do you get a great stainless .22 LR handgun (with fiber optic sights and included Picatinny rail), but you also get a range bag, ear muffs, safety eyewear, a bore snake, and a 10-pack of Caldwell Orange Peel bullseye targets.

6. Creedmoor — Konus 20-60x80mm Spotting Scope, $299.95

konuspot spotting scope
Good spotter for price that includes tripod and carry case

Spotting scopes are vital tools for shooters. But they can be pricey, especially those with large front objective lenses. Enter the Konuspot 80 20-60x80mm Spotting Scope from Creedmoor Sports. The big 80mm objective gathers plenty of light —- good for low-light shooting and observing. For the money, this is a surprisingly good spotter (though don’t expect it to compare with a high-end Kowa, Swaro, or Zeiss). And if you order now you get a small tripod, protective case, camera adapter, and smartphone adapter at no extra charge. Very good package deal.

7. Graf & Sons — Alternatives for Hodgdon H4350 & H1000

vihtavuori imr powder
Can’t find H4350 or H1000? Try these powders instead

Powder shelves are empty in stores, and popular powders like H4350 and H1000 are even out of stock at online vendors. Did you know there are some great alternatives out there That ARE in stock? If you’re looking for a great alternative to H4350 that shoots cooler and is temp-stable, consider Vihtavuori N165. If you’re searching for H1000, we recommend IMR 7977 Enduron as a fine substitute. Both of these choices are in stock now at Graf’s, which has very reasonable shipping and HazMat fees.

8. Brownells — MagPul 30rd PMAG Gen M2 10-pack, $119.99

pmag magazine
Insanely good deal on quality MagPul PMAG® AR magazines

In today’s world, AR owners can use plenty of high-quality, reliable “full-capacity” magazines. Right now Brownells is running a great sale on MagPul PMAGS — some of the best you can buy. MagPul’s TEN-Packs of AR-15 PMAG Gen M2 30-round MOE Magazines are on sale now for just $119.99. But it gets better — on checkout use Brownells CODE PTT to save another $10, for a net cost of $109.99. This is a killer deal on excellent AR PMAGs.

9. Amazon — Silicone Gun Socks with Multiple Sizes, From $3.79

silicone gun sock
Long guns should be in gun socks or borestores when in gunsafes

Most people think that once you put a gun in the vault it’s safe from corrosion but that couldn’t be further from the truth. We can’t count the number of people who have left guns in a safe for years only to pull them out and find rust all over them. Avoid future surprise and disappointment by using these affordable silicone treated socks. Offered in assorted sizes for pistols, rifles, and shotguns, prices range from $3.79 (pistol) to $7.39 (tactical rifle). We also recommend using Eezox or other good corrosion inhibitor on metal parts. With that and a good treated gun sock and a Goldenrod, rust should not be a worry anymore.

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November 18th, 2019

Smith & Wesson Parent AOBC Splits into Two Companies

American Outdoor Brands Smith Wesson spin-off industry

American Outdoor Brands Corporation (NASDAQ: AOBC), one of the world’s leading providers of firearms and products for shooting, hunting, and outdoor enthusiasts, is splitting into two separate companies, with the Smith & Wesson gun business becoming a stand-alone enterprise again. Last week American Outdoor Brands’ Board of Directors unanimously approved a plan to spin-off its outdoor products and accessories business as a tax-free stock dividend to its stockholders. The proposed transaction, which is expected to be completed in the second half of calendar 2020, would create two independent, publicly-traded companies: Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc. (encompassing the firearm business) and American Outdoor Brands, Inc. (encompassing the outdoor products and accessories business).

READ More about Smith & Wesson Spin-Off HERE »

American Outdoor Brands Smith & Wesson spin-off industry

According to AOBC: “The purpose of the spin-off is to enable the management team of each company to focus on its specific strategies, including (1) structuring its business to take advantage of growth opportunities in its specific markets; (2) tailoring its business operation and financial model to its specific long-term strategies; and, (3) aligning its external financial resources, such as stock, access to markets, credit, and insurance factors, with its particular type of business.”

Barry M. Monheit, Chairman of the Board, said, “There have been significant changes in the political climate as well as the economic, investing, and insurance markets since we embarked upon what we believe have been our very successful diversification efforts. We believe that separating into two independent public companies will allow each company to better align its strategic objectives with its capital allocation priorities. From the standpoint of our stockholders, at the time of the spin-off, the AOBC stockholders will own 100% of each company, thereby maintaining their pre-spin interest in both companies, and will thereafter have the ability to make distinct investment decisions tailored to their particular investment profile.”

Mark Smith Will Lead Smith & Wesson After Spin-Off
Upon successful completion of the spin-off, Mark Smith will become CEO of Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc.; Smith is currently the President of the Manufacturing Services Division of AOBC and supports all of its businesses. James Debney, current AOBC President and CEO, will lead the outdoor products and accessories company as CEO after the spin-off.

The Future of Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc. (Projections)
Headquartered in Springfield, Massachusetts, Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc. will continue its 167-year-old heritage of producing firearms. This business’s handgun, long gun, and suppressor products are marketed under the Smith & Wesson®, M&P®, Performance Center®, Thompson/Center Arms™, and Gemtech® brands. The company’s financial profile is expected to yield strong cash flows and profitability with a plan to eventually return capital to stockholders in the form of dividends and stock repurchases. Assuming a spin-off in eight to ten months, Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc. is expected to generate revenue between $450 million and $500 million and adjusted EBITDAS between $90 million and $105 million in its first 12 months as an independent company.

News Tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.

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November 6th, 2019

Smith & Wesson 9mm Shield Pistol $199.99 with Factory Rebate

Smith Wesson M&P 9mm pistol handguns rebate cash-back Palmetto state armory

If you are looking for a compact carry pistol, consider the Smith & Wesson 9mm M&P Shield. This is a comfortable, well-built gun with a better trigger (in our opinion) than a Glock. S&W products display excellent machining and good fit and finish. Moreover S&W offers a rock-solid warranty. To add extra incentive, Smith and Wesson is now offering a $50 Cash-Back Rebate for purchases of the 9mm M&P Shield through 12/8/2019. This offer also applies to the .380 ACP Shield EZ.

Smith Wesson M&P 9mm pistol handguns rebate cash-back Palmetto state armory

With the $50 Rebate you can get the 9mm M&P Shield for just $199.99 net cost at Palmetto State Armory. Palmetto’s price before rebate is $209.99. Once you receive your $50 pre-paid Credit Card from the manufacturer, that reduces the effective price to just $199.99.

Smith Wesson M&P 9mm pistol handguns rebate cash-back Palmetto state armory

Smith & Wesson 9mm Shield Pistol Evaluations
Is the 9mm M&P Shield 2.0 a good pistol? Here are three helpful video reviews. We think this little pistol offers a very good combination of reliability, concealability, and affordability.

S&W 9mm M&P Shield 1000-Round Review

Jerry Miculek and Julie Golob Demo the Smith & Wesson Shield

S&W 9mm M&P Shield Long-Term (2 Year) Review

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August 14th, 2019

Smith & Wesson Revives Model 648 .22 WMR Revolver

smith wesson S&W model 648 revolver wheelgun .22 WMR Winchester magnum rimfire 6

We love Smith & Wesson rimfire revolvers. We have put thousands of rounds through S&W Model 617 revolvers, with 4″ and 6″ barrels. These stainless .22 LR handguns are accurate, superbly reliable, and they hold their value. In general we’ve found that Smith & Wesson rimfire revolvers may be less fussy with ammo, and more trouble-free than typical semi-auto rimfires. Bottom line, we feel that everyone should have an S&W rimfire wheelgun in their collection.

And now there’s a great additional Rimfire Revolver option from Smith & Wesson — the “revived” Model 648 in .22 WMR. This stainless Model 648 brings a more powerful cartridge to S&W rimfire revolver fans.

smith wesson S&W model 648 revolver wheelgun .22 WMR Winchester magnum rimfire 6Built on S&W’s medium K-frame, the 8-round Model 648 is designed for small game hunting and target shooting. The .22 WMR is definitely a much more potent varmint cartridge than the .22 LR. You have more downrange energy plus a flatter trajectory. While the 648 does not come with an integral scope rail, it is not difficult to mount red dot or optical sights to this wheelgun.

The Model 648 revolver is built on a stainless steel medium K-frame and includes black synthetic finger groove grips, a black patridge front sight, and adjustable rear sight. This impressive revolver features a full underlug six-inch barrel, eight-round capacity, and is available with an MSRP of $749.

Model 648 History and Features

According to Guns.com: “The K-frame .22 WMR-caliber Model 648 first appeared in Big Blue’s lineup in 1989 sporting a full-lug barrel and stainless steel construction. Retired since 2005, the newest generation of the Model still brings a 6-inch barrel to the party, which translates to a very commanding 11.1-inch overall length. Weight is 46.2-ounces in the eight-shot .22 Mag, making the gun attractive for both those looking to fill pots and smoke targets.” Shown below is a vintage Model 648.

smith wesson S&W model 648 revolver wheelgun .22 WMR Winchester magnum rimfire 6

Jan Mladek, General Manager of Smith & Wesson General Manager Jan Mladek reports: “The Model 648 is back in production to satisfy the needs of handgun owners who are looking to achieve greater distance while hunting or target shooting. With a full underlug, six-inch barrel and a patridge front sight, the Model 648 has been designed … to boost accuracy at longer distances. While we currently offer .22 Magnum revolvers in both our J-frame and Classics line, we are excited to add this new .22 Magnum revolver to the modern K-frame lineup.”

Permalink Handguns, Hunting/Varminting, New Product, News 5 Comments »
April 30th, 2019

Pistol Instructor Offers Critic A Slice of Humble Pie

Smith Wesson pistol accuracy Grutter M&P 45 .45 ACP Winchester ammo
Shown is the Smith & Wesson M&P 9mm model. The M&P 45 is the same except for chambering.

You’ll hear some shooters complain loudly about the (perceived) lack of accuracy of their handguns. Well, sometimes the problem IS the gun, but other times the problem is “driver error”. At the range, we often hear guys blame their gun for poor accuracy, when in fact the real problem is lack of operator skill. This saga, posted recently on Facebook, is a case in point.

Here’s the story. A gentleman attending an armorer’s course at Smith & Wesson was loudly dissing a S&W M&P 45, claiming it could not shoot. Very loudly he tells the instructor, “the M&P 45 one of our officers is carrying is sh*t”. He then trash-talks the gun, saying that both he and his officer couldn’t get the gun to shoot decent groups, either with FMJ or duty ammo.

Well it seems that Gregory Grutter, S&W’s Chief Firearms Instructor, happened to overhear these vociferous complaints, so Grutter asked to test-fire the M&P 45 pistol. Grutter put a couple of his business cards up at 15 yards, then shot one with Winchester Ranger SXT and the other with Winchester White Box ammo. Grutter’s best group was about half an inch, measured with OnTarget. Check it out:

Smith Wesson pistol accuracy Grutter M&P 45 .45 ACP Winchester ammo

We’re told that, after hearing the litany of complaints, Grutter walked over to the loud-mouthed grumbler and asked: “Hey Sir, can I shoot it?

“Have at it, I don’t want that POS back!” said Mr. Negative.

Kharma time baby… In Grutter’s hands the M&P performed superbly. Here are Grutter’s two 5-shot groups, each shot at 15 yards with the .45 ACP Smith & Wesson pistol. Pretty darn impressive:

Smith Wesson pistol accuracy Grutter M&P 45 .45 ACP Winchester ammo

After seeing this, the complainer asked: “Why did you shoot your cards — Ain’t got no targets?”

Grutter smiled and replied: “Nah… in case you or your officer want to learn how to shoot [this way] you will have the numbers to call.” Badda Bing!

Permalink Handguns, Shooting Skills 5 Comments »
July 8th, 2017

Rebate Mania — Save Money with Eight Great Rebates

pistol rifle remington marlin smith wesson rebate hornady walther taurus nra membership

Many gun-makers and gear manufacturers have excess inventory. To move product they are offering a variety of incentives — discount coupons, free accessories/upgrades, and cash-back rebates. Here are some of the best gun industry rebates we’ve found. Some of these offers can save you hundreds of dollars on a new firearm. Other deals can deliver free bullets, free magazines, free batteries, or even a free NRA membership.

Remington Live Ready Rebates
Save $60-$160 on select Remington Rifles and Shotguns. Save $50-$100 on select Remington pistols. Mail-in Rebate.
Expires: July 30, 2017

Hornady Get Loaded 2017
Get 500 free bullets with the purchase of select Hornady Lock-N-Load reloading products, with Mail-in Coupon.
Expires: December 31, 2017

Bushmaster Rifle Rebate Days
Purchase any select qualifying Bushmaster rifle and receive $150 cash back (except QRC). Receive $75 cash back on QRC models.
Expires: July 30, 2017

Marlin Firearms Rifle Rebates
Cash back on qualifying Marlin rifles: $50 on select Marlin 336W, $75 on Marlin 336 and 1894 Models, and $100 on Marlin 1895.
Expires: July 30, 2017

Smith & Wesson Summer Rebates
Purchase any NEW qualifying M&P Full Size, Compact, or M&P Shield Pistol and receive 2 magazines, 2 boxes of ammo, and a Caldwell Mag Charger via Mail-In Rebate.
Expires: September 30, 2017

Crimson Trace Battery Promo
This unique program allows (1) set of batteries per calendar year, per product and is valid for most Crimson Trace products and battery types. Free Batteries for Life.
Expires: Not Listed

Walther $100 Cash Back
Get $100 cash back when you purchase any qualifying Walther model PPS or PPQ handgun. Mail-In Rebate.
Expires: September 15, 2017

Taurus — Free NRA Membership
Receive a Free NRA Membership with purchase of new Taurus Firearm.
Expires: December 30, 2017

Sale/Rebate Tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions
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January 19th, 2017

SHOT Show Pistol Parade — Bling Is the Thing

SHOT show pistol Desert Eagle 2017
Bring the Bling, Baby! This Desert Eagle Mark XIX features a highly polished Gold-Tone Titanium Tiger Stripe finish. Conspicuous Consumption, SHOT Show Style.

There were literally thousands of handguns on display at SHOT Show, most of which you could hold, cycle, and test the trigger pull. Among the hordes of handguns, we found some very eye-catching examples, such as the Gold-tone Titanium plated “Tiger Stripe” Desert Eagle above. Just what a Rap Star or Tin-Pot Dictator needs. Below are some other interesting handguns we saw at SHOT Show 2017

Ed Brown Signature Edition Engraved 1911
This Ed Brown Signature Edition Model 1911 boasts elaborate engraving over the entire slide and frame. The blueing is rich and deep (the photo does not do it justice). This is not an “entry-level” handgun, that’s for sure — the wholesale “dealer price” is a whopping $6,156.00. Expect to pay well over $7000.00 at retail. Beauty ain’t cheap.

Ed Brown 1911 Engraved Signature Edition

Smith & Wesson Performance Center 9mm Revolver with Hogue Mods
This handsome S&W Performance Center 9mm revolver features a beautiful Cocobolo and Walnut grip along with a special speed lever for the cylinder release. That speed lever assists rapid reloading of the pistol with moon clips. This kind of revolver is used in action shooting matches, such as the Bianchi Cup.

9mm Revolver S&W Hogue

Best of the Old West — A Slew of Schofields
At the Taylor & Company booth, there were hundreds of single action revolvers on display. Here is a brace of top-break Schofields. This design features a hinge at the front of the frame which allows rapid unloading. Based on the original S&W Model 3, the “Schofield” model was named after Major George W. Schofield, who modified the original Model 3 to better serve the needs of Cavalrymen. Smith & Wesson incorporated the Major’s mods into an 1875 design that now bears Major Schofield’s name. S&W Model 3 Schofield revolvers saw service in the Indian Wars, and they were popular with legendary lawmen and outlaws in the American West (including Jesse James).

S&W Model 3 Schofield Revolver Wild West

9mm 1911 — Havoc Dan Wesson Elite with Angled Reflex Sight
We like 1911s, and we like the 9mm Luger cartridge for its affordability and low recoil. Put the two together and you have a very accurate, shootable package, with a superb trigger. This bad-ass 9mm 1911 is a Dan Wesson Elite Series Havoc. It caught our eye because it boasts a C-MORE SlideRide red dot Reflex Sight mounted at an angle on the left side of the slide. Clever design — that gives you the advantage of the Red Dot Sight, with a lower profile. The Havoc, which sells for $4,299.00, is also offered in .38 Super.

Dan Wesson Havoc Elite 9mm Luger 1911 pistol

dan wesson 9mm elite havoc pistol

Taurus Spectrum — A Pastel Pistol Fashion Statement
Apparently small carry guns have become fashion items. Tauras displayed its new .380 ACP Spectrum pistol in a rainbow of frame/grip color combinations. Along with white frame and blue grip, there were gray/tan, gray/green, gray/red, and gray/blue versions. Taurus really does deliver a spectrum of colors…

taurus spectrum colored pistol .380 acp carry gun

Double Trouble — Two Super-Sized Revolvers
At the Smith & Wesson booth, one visitor showed off two mega-sized S&W Performance Center hunting revolvers. These jumbo S&W500™ wheelguns, chambered for the mighty 500 S&W Magnum cartridge, feature massive 10.5″ barrels plus muzzle brakes. Overall length is 18″. Size counts right?

S&W 500 hunting revolver pistol shot show

smith wesson 500 revolver shot show

Permalink Handguns, New Product No Comments »
July 27th, 2016

Smith & Wesson Acquires Crimson Trace for $95 Million

Crimson Trace CTC Smith & Wesson Holding Company S&W acquisition Oregon Wilsonville

Here’s big news in the gun industry. In a $95 million cash deal, Smith & Wesson Holding Company (Nasdaq: SWHC) will acquire Crimson Trace Corporation (CTC), the industry leader in firearms laser sights and tactical lighting. Once the acquisition is finalized, CTC will operate as Smith & Wesson’s new Electro-Optics Division, headed by Lane Tobiassen, CTC’s current President and CEO. Jeffrey Buchanan, Executive VP and CFO of Smith & Wesson, stated, “We intend to complete the purchase of Crimson Trace with cash on hand and we expect the transaction to close in three to six weeks.”

Lane Tobiassen Crimson Trace CTC Smith & Wesson Holding Company S&W acquisition Oregon WilsonvilleThis deal makes sense for both parties. In the past 12 months, CTC earned $44 million, with a quarter of that coming from Smith & Wesson. CTC President/CEO Lane Tobiassen will serve as President of S&W’s new Electro-Optics Division. The Crimson Trace management team and workforce, as well as its base of operations, will remain in Wilsonville, Oregon after the acquisition. Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (SWHC) will purchase all of the outstanding stock of Crimson Trace for $95.0 million in cash.

Two Decades of Innovation and Growth for CTC
Founded 22 years ago, Crimson Trace is now the firearms industry leader in laser sighting system and tactical lighting. CTC currently offers more than 225 products, including: Lasergrips®, Laserguard®, Rail Master® platforms, Defender Series®, Lightguard®, and the new LiNQ™ wireless activation system. With its ever-expanding product line, CTC has generated a 10-year compound annual revenue growth rate in excess of 10%.

Crimson Trace CTC Smith & Wesson Holding Company S&W acquisition Oregon Wilsonville
CTC offers cutting-edge technology, including LiNQ™, the world’s first wirelessly-controlled laser + white light system. LiNQ™ combines a green laser sight and 300-Lumen LED white light for AR-Type Modern Sporting Rifles. The laser and light are controlled wirelessly via handgrip buttons.

Top Crimson Trace and S&W Executives Speak Out:
CTC President/CEO Lane Tobiassen said: “It is a great honor to lead Crimson Trace into this exciting new chapter in our history by joining the Smith & Wesson team. Since 1994, we have designed and brought to market more than 225 products[.] As the new Electro-Optics Division of Smith & Wesson, we believe that our capabilities, combined with inorganic opportunities to acquire related technologies, will expand the reach of our existing market footprint. This makes us a great fit for Smith & Wesson, a legendary company with an iconic brand[.]”

James Debney, Smith & Wesson President and CEO said, “Crimson Trace provides us with an exceptional opportunity to acquire a thriving company that is completely aligned with our strategy to become a leader in the market for shooting, hunting, and rugged outdoor enthusiasts. As the undisputed leader in the market for laser sighting products, Crimson Trace serves as an ideal platform for our new Electro-Optics Division.”

Permalink News, Optics No Comments »
September 28th, 2014

Smith & Wesson Performance Center Ported M&P Pistols

M&P smith wesson ported pistol 9mm .40sw

Smith & Wesson is introducing a new series of ported M&P pistols. Chambered in 9mm and .40 S&W, the Performance Center M&P Ported pistols offer a factory-ported barrel and slide. Both 4.25″ and 5″ barrel configurations are offered in each caliber. A special Performance Center sear provides a crisp 4.5-pound trigger pull with faster reset. The 9mm pistol has a 17+1 round capacity while the .40 S&W variant features a 15+1 round capacity. Both handguns (9mm and 40 S&W) have an MSRP of $812 with two magazines.

The ported design should help competitors, says pistol ace Jerry Miculek: “The two biggest advantages of running a ported gun in competition involve reduced muzzle rise and less perceived recoil. This [will] help with shorter split times and more rounds on target — two things every competitor wants.”

M&P smith wesson ported pistol 9mm .40sw

The new ported M&P pistols feature a slide-top platform for easy mounting of red-dot optics. These guns also have high-profile iron sights that can be used in conjunction with the optics. The M&P Performance Center Ported models also feature a textured interchangeable back strap. Three palmswell grips are supplied with each pistol, allowing shooters to custom-tailor grip size to their preference.

M&P smith wesson ported pistol 9mm .40swVideo Shows Ported Pistol Features and 3D CAD Views:

Permalink Handguns, New Product 1 Comment »
May 8th, 2014

Julie Says ‘Take a Moment’ for Gun Safety This Mother’s Day

julie golob child safetyTeam Smith & Wesson shooter Julie Golob has a message for this Mother’s Day (Sunday, May 11th). Julie writes: “While some are using Mother’s Day week to push a gun control agenda, I’d like to encourage moms to ‘Take a Moment’. Talk to your kids about firearms safety. Help them learn what to do around firearms and have an open, honest discussion about guns and gun safety.

I truly believe that, no matter if you are pro-gun or anti-gun, everyone should know and understand the basic rules of firearm safety. It is equally important for parents to have the discussion about guns and what to do if your child finds one. Both the NSSF’s Project ChildSafe and the NRA’s Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program are excellent. They offer resources for parents, educators, and child care providers to help ensure kids stay safe.

Julie encourages all who read this to share the message. So far, on Facebook, the “Take a Moment” image has been shared 639 times, and seen by 66,112 people. That’s the power of the internet. Julie says: “Thank you all so much for helping me spread the importance of firearms safety.”

julie golob child safety

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April 25th, 2014

Miculek Makes 16 Shots in 4.01 Seconds with 9mm Revolver

How fast can a human shoot a revolver? The legendary Jerry Miculek answers that question in this video. Using his new, 9mm model 929 revolver, Jerry shoots 16 shots in 4.01 seconds, with a reload*. His splits between shots were running 0.16-0.17 seconds. That works out to a peak rate of fire of 353 rounds per minute, faster than some early-era machine guns. Even counting his reloads, his sustained rate of fire would be 239 rounds per minute, faster than a 19th-century Gatling gun. Note: If you are attending the NRA Annual Meetings in Indianapolis this weekend, you can meet Jerry Miculek at the Hornady booth (#6361) on Friday or Saturday at 4:00 PM.

16 shots w reload Split Times Peak Rate of Fire Sustained Rate of Fire
4.01 seconds 0.16-0.17 seconds 353 rds per min 239 rds per min

Smith & Wesson 929 Eight-shot Revolver, Jerry Miculek Edition

Jerry really likes his JM Signature Edition model 629 revolver. Produced by the S&W Custom Shop, this 9mm handgun features a ported, broach-cut barrel plus a titanium cylinder. Jerry says the low-mass titanium cylinder reciprocates very fast, making for a responsive rapid-fire revolver.

Jerry Miculek 929 Smith Wesson S&W revolver titanium

*This was time on target. Total time including initial reaction time was 4.88 seconds.

Permalink - Videos, Shooting Skills 5 Comments »
November 16th, 2011

Championship .38 Spl Revolver — 11 Years Old and Still Winning

Editor’s Note: Sometimes proven old designs are just as good as the latest technology. In the capable hands of Robert Vadasz, the scratched and well-used 11-year-old Smith & Wesson revolver shown below has won three PPC National Championships and the 2011 National Police Shooting Championship (multiple guns used). Here’s a profile of a great shooter and his trusty old wheelgun.

Vasdasz 38spl Revolver

Story by Lars Dalseide, for The NRA Blog
When I first approached U.S. Border Patrol Agent Robert Vadasz about profiling the guns he used to win the 2011 National Police Shooting Championship — his third in four years — he had just completed the final stage of the Revolver 1500 Match. A match that he won with a score of 1490-117X. A match in which he used his Bob Jones PPC revolver.

“It’s a .38 Special Smith & Wesson,” said Vadasz. “My Bob Jones PPC revolver. The very first competition gun that I ever had built … probably back in 2000″. Fitted with Hogue Monogrip, the .38 hasn’t been tinkered with since the day it arrived. “Exact same gun,” said Vadasz. “It’s never been worked on. It’s never been changed. I won all three of my PPC National Championships with this gun. It’s real special to me.”

In a 2001 NRA Law Enforcement Division Newsletter, gunsmith Bob Jones talked about his work on PPC pistols: “I started working on pistols in the Navy, and it kind of stuck — it was something I really enjoyed doing,” said Bob, thinking back to his days as a Naval armorer who tinkered with .45s.

Vasdasz 38spl Revolver

Bob’s typical modifications to a Smith & Wesson revolver include fitting a Shilen barrel, bobbing the hammer (cutting off the cocking spur), adding an Aristocrat Sight Rib, tuning and smoothing the trigger, and installing a trigger stop. The Shilen barrel increases accuracy, adds some additional weight for stability, and its increased size (and surface area) helps with heat dissipation.

Vasdasz 38spl Revolver

Permalink Competition, Gunsmithing 2 Comments »
November 14th, 2011

S&W Expands Thompson Center Venture Rifle Recall

Last week we reported that Smith & Wesson was recalling certain Thompson/Center (T/C) Venture rifles because of potential defects in the sear mechanism. Well it looks like the problem is worse than first thought. As a result, Smith & Wesson has expanded its recall to include ALL T/C Venture Rifles manufactured prior to October 28, 2011. The sear issue could possibly cause a Venture rifle to fire without the trigger being pulled. READ Recall Notice.

Expanded Recall of Thompson/Center (T/C) Venture Rifles
This broadens the recall announced by Smith & Wesson on November 8, 2011. This recall applies to ALL Venture rifles manufactured prior to October 28, 2011. To determine if your rifle is affected, please reference the serial number list located at www.smith-wesson.com/venturerecall or by calling Smith & Wesson directly at 1-800-713-0356. If your serial number does not fall within the list of affected serial numbers, your rifle is not part of this recall.

REMEDY/ACTION TO BE TAKEN: STOP USING YOUR RIFLE. Any unintended discharge of a firearm has the potential to cause injury or death, and we ask that you stop using your rifle until we have an opportunity to inspect the sear to make certain that there is no condition which will allow the rifle to fire without the trigger being pulled. To facilitate the inspection and, if necessary, repair of your rifle, please contact Smith & Wesson’s customer service department to receive instructions and a prepaid return label for the return of your rifle to Smith & Wesson. When you return your rifle to Smith & Wesson, be sure to attach the completed information card received from Smith & Wesson, so that your rifle can be returned to you as quickly and efficiently as possible.

CONSUMER CONTACT: Please contact Smith & Wesson directly at 1-800-713-0356, or at venturerecall@smith-wesson.com to arrange for the inspection and repair of your rifle.

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November 5th, 2011

Smith & Wesson Rolls Out .300 Whisper AR-Platform Rifle

Smith & Wesson is going to produce an AR15-type rifle chambered for the .300 Whisper cartridge. This will be an addition to S&W’s Military & Police (M&P) Rifle series. As the first production rifle in the AR platform to be chambered in .300 Whisper (and .300 AAC Blackout), the new rifle offers both sub-sonic and supersonic capabilities. Originally developed and pioneered by J.D. Jones of SSK Industries, the 300 Whisper is based on the .221 Rem Fireball case necked up to .308. Notably, S&W says its M&P15 .300 Whisper is compatible with both the .300 Whisper and the .300 AAC Blackout (BLK) cartridges. The latter is a SAAMI-standardized, trademark-free variant of the .300 Whisper.

Smith Wesson M&P15 .300 Whisper .300 AAC blackout

Smith Wesson M&P15 .300 Whisper .300 AAC blackout

Manufactured on the M&P15 (AR-clone) platform, S&W’s new semi-automatic .300 Whisper rifle features an 1 in 7.5” twist, 16″ chrome-moly barrel. Both the forged 7075 aluminum upper and lower receivers have been coated with a Realtree APG camo finish. Standard features include forward assist and a six-position, collapsible CAR stock. MSRP for the complete rifle is $1,119. A separate .300 Whisper AR flat-top upper will also be offered, with an $819.00 MSRP.

“As the popularity of the modern sporting rifle continues to grow, more hunters are seeing the advantages of taking these firearms into the field,” said Mario Pasantes, S&W Senior Vice President of Marketing. “The M&P15 300 Whisper gives consumers the ability to use either lightweight or heavy cartridges during hunting or recreational applications without changing rifles or barrels.”

Is Hunting the Real Market for S&W’s .300 Whisper M&P15?

Editor’s Comment: If this gun is intended for hunting, we’re not sure Smith & Wesson got this one right. While the .300 Whisper is an interesting cartridge, it was originally designed to run sub-sonic, or be used with a suppressor. At sub-sonic velocities, the cartridge doesn’t pack much punch — not much more than a heavy pistol round. So you’re carrying around an 8-lb rifle (with optics) that only hits like a pistol. On the other hand, it can be loaded up to supersonic velocities, yielding ballistics similar to the .30-30.

But if you run it supersonic, why mess with this oddball cartridge at all? There are many other proven, game-killing chamberings for which a huge variety of inexpensive hunting ammo is widely available. (In fairness, .300 Whisper factory ammunition does exist. Hornady now offers both 1200 fps sub-sonic and 2375 fps supersonic .300 Whisper Ammo.)

Now the use of a .300 Whisper with a suppressor is intriguing. But, realistically, how many American hunters are going to get fingerprinted and pay the $200 tax for a suppressor, not to mention the hefty cost of the suppressor itself? As for the rifle configuration, a 16″ barrel is quite short for a hunting gun, and a wobbly first-gen collapsible stock that rattles is the last thing we’d want to take hunting.

Our guess is that most purchasers of this rifle will simply use it for plinking or tactical games, where the low recoil and long barrel life associated with the .300 Whisper will be welcome. One source suggests that the .300 Whisper has become popular with metallic silhouette shooters due to its low recoil and high accuracy. However we doubt you’ll be seeing many M&P15s on the silhouette course, given the funky, collapsible buttstock and short sight radius. (Under NRA Rules, AR15-type rifles are eligible for metallic silhouette competition under rule 3.1.2, but they must use “standard type stock[s]”.)

Story Tip by EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink Hunting/Varminting, New Product 13 Comments »
October 24th, 2011

Babes With Bullets Announces 2012 Women’s Shooting Camps

Babes with BulletsBabes with Bullets™ is a three-day “immersion” camp program, led by a professional all-female staff, teaching novice women how to shoot handguns and some camps also offer rifle training. The head instructor is Kay Miculek, who has won multiple “action pistol” and multi-gun World and National championships. The camps also accommodate women who want to move up in competitions such as U.S. Practical Shooting Association (USPSA) or IDPA.

“This is an unusual training opportunity” stated Miculek “with all-female handgun champions picked for their abilities to work with novice women in a way that is empowering without being over-powering.” According to Miculek, many of the campers will shoot a gun for the first time and after completing the 3-day program they will have shot hundreds of rounds from various calibers of handguns. Miculek added, “Each woman will leave from this camp with a new life skill. Our emphasis is to show the ladies that shooting is a safe, enjoyable, and rewarding sport for women of all ages.”

According to Camp Director Deb Ferns, there are over 2,100 camper alumnae, ages 18 to 78, the majority having very little experience with a gun prior to camp. Ferns explained: “Think of this camp as part firearms training, part adventure camp and part pajama party”. Deb Ferns provides an introduction to the program in the video below.

Watch Babes With Bullets on the Outdoor Channel
Babes with Bullets has been a popular feature on the Outdoor Channel. Videos of Camp training sessions can be previewed at www.outdoorchannel.com/babeswithbullets. Camp registration forms and additional information are found at www.BabeswithBullets.com. If you have questions, contact Deb Ferns at (520) 331-3400 or e-mail Deb [at] BabeswithBullets.com

Smith & Wesson Supplies Guns for Camp Participants
The cost of camp is $675, which includes housing, food, range fees, instructor costs and use of complimentary firearms, provided by Smith & Wesson. Campers also qualify for discounts on Smith & Wesson handguns and rifles.

Babes with Bullets

2012 Babes with Bullets Camp Locations

March 16th to 18th, 2012
Rocky Creek Ranch near Sarasota, Florida. Handgun camp for both novice and intermediate women.

April 13th to 15th, 2012
Bang-Inc.com, home range of Kay Miculek, located outside Shreveport, Louisiana. “Combo Camp” for novice and intermediates, offering two days of handgun work and one day of AR-15 rifle training. Three full range days.

May 18th to 20th, 2012
Willow Lake Sportman’s Club near Kalamazoo, Michigan. Three-day camp for novice and intermediate women. Campers stay at deluxe Willow Lake SC Lodge.

June 29th to July 1st, 2012
Routt County Rifle (and Pistol) Club near Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Novice and intermediate camp with lodging located near the range.

September 7th to 10th, 2012
Rockcastle Shooting Center in Rockcastle, Kentucky. New “Combo Camp” offering beginner and intermediate handgun and rifle training.

October 12th to 14th, 2012
Tucson Rifle Club in Tucson, Arizona. Novice and intermediate camp at home range of camp director Deb Ferns.

November 2nd to 4th, 2012
Babes with Bullets is planning a Texas “Combo Camp” of handgun and rifle training first weekend of November. Site TBA.

Permalink News, Shooting Skills No Comments »
May 27th, 2010

Jessie Abbate Joins Team Smith & Wesson

Among female action shooters, Jessie Abbate, 2009 USPSA Ladies Back-to-Back National Champion, may be the most marketable talent in America right now. Jessie has been featured on several TV shows, including Shooting USA, Cowboys, Shooting Gallery, and American Hunter. After Abbate left Team Glock in a contract dispute, the shooting world has been wondering which sponsor would secure Jessie’s services for its team. Well, now we have an answer — Jessie Abbate will shoot for Team Smith & Wesson. Jim Shepherd’s Shooting Wire reports that “Abbate has signed with Team Smith & Wesson”, as confirmed by Abbate’s agent Russell Stott.

Jessie Abbate S&W

This now gives Team S&W a powerful threesome of female shooters as Abbate joins Womens’ Team Captain Julie Goloski Golob and Kay Clark Miculek. While 9-time USPSA Champion Golob is primarily a pistol shooter, both Kay Miculek and Jessie Abbate are top-flight multi-gun shooters as well. Abbate developed her rifle and shotgun skills in Cowboy Action shooting, and Kay is a 13-Time USPSA Multi-Gun Open Champion. Having Kay AND Jessie under contract is a big coup for Smith & Wesson, as multi-gun matches afford Smith & Wesson a chance to showcase its handguns AND its rifle products.

Jessie Abbate S&W

The Rise of Multi-Gun Competition
Multi-Gun and 3-Gun matches become more popular every season. One top 3-gun shooter who originally came up through the pistol ranks told us: “Multi-Gun is the future — it’s what TV viewers want and what sponsors want”. The major multi-gun matches are drawing 30% more competitors each year. And now 3-Gun Nation has brought multi-gun shooting to prime-time television with a compelling nationwide series with a huge cash payout in the end. That’s smart, NASCAR-style marketing. We predict that, within a few years, multi-gun events will eclipse the handgun-only events in popularity, prize money, and sponsorship interest. With Abbate added to the S&W team, along with long-time multi-gun ace Kay Miculek, S&W is positioned to dominate womens’ multi-gun competition for years to come.

Photos courtesy JessieAbbate.com

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