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NSSF

VOLUME 20, NUMBER 2 FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012

SHOOTING, HUNTING & OUTDOOR TRADE

OPTICS

2012

Optics manufacturers are rolling out a wealth of new products designed to meet the needs of a wide range of shooting sports enthusiasts, including scenario shooters, crossbow converts, and, of course, big-game hunters of all stripes. Pg.30

ALSO IN THIS ISSUE  FIRING LINE: T/C’s new switch-barrel Dimension rifle delivers versatility and accuracy at a very affordable price. Pg. 26  GOOD STUFF: SCARPA mountaineering boots also happen to be a great choice for hunting elk in tough terrain. Pg. 48

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PERFORMANCE ENHANCEMENT

How do you make a Savage rifle even more accurate? Well, as the adage goes, you can’t kill what you can’t see, so you include a Nikon 3-9x40 BDC reticle scope, mounted and bore sighted. This unique reticle can be ballistically matched to your exact cartridge using Nikon “Spot On” Software. Coincidentally, the price of the New package is “Spot On” too. See your favorite Savage dealer for details. SAVAGEARMS.COM

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S H OT B U S I N ES S

F E B R U A R Y/ M A R C H 2 0 1 2

CONTENTS

VOL. 20, ISSUE 2

Departments 26

30

40

Features

30

OPTICS 2012 Expect an interesting year as manufacturers ramp up to meet emerging markets. In particular, retailers will see a focus on crossbow optics as well as compact scopes ideal for use on the modern sporting rifle platform. BY ROBERT SADOWSKI

40

THE .375 MYSTIQUE This British magnum, which first saw the light of day 100 years ago, remains a surprisingly versatile cartridge. There are also a number of modern rifles chambered for it, many of which do not cost a king’s ransom. BY WAYNE VAN ZWOLL

NSSF Update 17 18

FROM THE NSSF Fighting

for your rights

STATS PROVE HUNTING IS SAFE It ranks third in safety

compared with 28 other recreational pursuits

19

2011 WAS A RECORD YEAR FOR NSSF MEMBERSHIP

The number of members now exceeds 7,000

2 5

21 22

YOU SHOULD KNOW

NSSF’s First Shots program is a proven winner FROM MY SIDE OF THE COUNTER This new column

reports from the retailer’s point of view

into my crystal ball

NEWS BRIEFS Vanguard moving to include outdoors industry; ATK expands digital arsenal; Timney offers handsfree trigger

24

FYI Retailers from across the country tell us what sold in 2011 and their outlook for 2012

26

FIRING LINE T/C’s new Dimension delivers affordable accuracy

28

UNDERCOVER SHOPPER A young

46 48 52

20

EDITOR’S NOTE Gazing

mother looks for a concealed-carry pistol in Charlotte, North Carolina WHAT’S SELLING WHERE GOOD STUFF Tough

terrain requires a tough boot, and SCARPA is up to the challenge NEW PRODUCTS MKS Supply’s Chiappa Little Sharps Rifle in .17-caliber Hornady Hornet; Browning’s Tactical Hunter Control Point flashlight; and more

52

NSSF DELIVERS VALUE

FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012 ❚ SHOT BUSINESS ❚ 1

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eDitor’S note nSSf

Crystal Ball Can you see the silver lining?

F

irst off this month, I’d like to direct your attention to “Optics 2012” (page 30), our annual look at new riflescopes, binoculars, spotting scopes, and other optical equipment. We see an interesting trend this year. Well, two actually. Although the staff of SHOT Business focuses its efforts on the shooting-sports industry rather than archery, crossbows have been getting a lot of attention in the past couple of years. States are liberalizing crossbow regulations (in an attempt to get more hunters into the field), and as a result crossbow

manufacturers are seeing increased interest—and sales—particularly from older hunters who may no longer be able to use a heavy compound bow. Because of this, optics manufacturers are beginning to ramp up production of scopes designed specifically for crossbows. The other trend is the continuing development of optics specifically for use on the modern sporting rifle platform, especially for shooters who wish to pursue 3-Gun competition and other scenario games. All in all, this is good news for retailers. Second, I’d like you to take a look at “Vital Signs” (FYI, page 24), by Scott Bestul. Bestul decided to check the vital signs of six retailers to see how things went for them last year—and how they feel about 2012. The results, given the dismal

state of the general U.S. economy, are surprisingly heartening. For example, Richard Sprague, of Sprague’s Sporting Goods in Yuma, Arizona, told Bestul that he expected the wheels to fall off the MSR craze. But he was dead wrong, and sales of these rifles, along with other tactical and self-defense models, surged at his shop. However, he added an important proviso: Sales went to quality guns at a good price point and with a strong warranty. That echoes something Peter B. Mathiesen, who reports our What’s Selling Where survey, heard all year long—products that are priced right will move. Most customers really don’t want cheap stuff, but given the hard times we face, they do expect value, and they expect a retailer (as well as the manufacturer) to meet them halfway. Glenn Duncan, who owns Duncan’s Outdoor Shop in Bay City, Michigan, noted that traffic in highend rifles was off last year, “but anything that was a good product” with a reasonable price—he cited Marlin as an example—sold very well. Two retailers with ranges saw strong growth and expect more of the same. Our sample group also agreed that concealed-carry will continue to experience strong growth. As I gaze into my crystal ball, I still see clouds on the horizon. But, as noted above, there are bright spots that savvy retailers can use to their advantage. We also have a presidential election in the fall. As Duncan said, “It’s going to be an interesting and potentially strange year.” You bet.

Slaton l. White, Editor

shooting, hunting & outdoor trade

Slaton l. White, editor

Margaret M. nussey, Managing Editor David e. Petzal, Shooting Editor John Burgman, Assistant Editor Maribel Martin, Senior Administrative Assistant James a. Walsh, Art Director Shayna Marchese, Associate Art Director Judith Weber, Production Manager ContriButing eDitorS

Larry Ahlman, Barbara Baird, Scott Bestul, Philip Bourjaily, Chris Christian, Christopher Cogley, David Draper, Jock Elliott, Doug Howlett, William F. Kendy, Mark Kayser, Peter B. Mathiesen, Brian McCombie, Tom Mohrhauser, Robert Sadowski, Robert F. Staeger, Marilyn Stone, Wayne Van Zwoll

eriC ZinCZenko, Vice President, group Publisher aDVertiSing: 212-779-5316

gregory D. gatto, Advertising Director Paula iwanski, National Sporting Goods Director Brian Peterson, West Stephen Mitchell, Southeast elizabeth a. Burnham, Associate Publisher, Marketing & Online Services ingrid reslmaier, Marketing Design Director

BuSineSS oPerationS

tara Bisciello, Business Manager

ConSuMer Marketing

robert M. Cohn, Consumer Marketing Director raymond Ward, Senior Planning Manager Barbara Brooker, Fulfillment Manager

ManufaCturing

laurel kurnides, Group Production Director Barbara taffuri, Production Director

Bonnier

Chairman, Jonas Bonnier Chief executive officer, Terry Snow Chief financial officer, Randall Koubek Senior Vice President, Corporate Sales, Gregg Hano Vice President, Consumer Marketing, Bruce Miller Vice President, Production, Lisa Earlywine Vice President, information technology, Shawn Larson Vice President, Corporate Communications, Dean Turcol Brand Director, John Miller Publishing Consultant, Martin S. Walker general Counsel, Jeremy Thompson

SHOT Business (ISSN 1081-8618) is published January, February/March, April/ May, June/July, August/September, October/November and December by Bonnier Corporation, 2 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10016-5695, and is the official publication of the National Shooting Sports Foundation, Flintlock Ridge Office Center, 11 Mile Hill Road, Newtown, CT 06470 (203-426-1320). Volume 20, issue 2. Copyright © 2012 by the National Shooting Sports Foundation. All rights reserved. Editorial, circulation, production and advertising offices are located at 2 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10016-5695 (212-779-5000). Free to qualified subscribers; available to non-qualified subscribers for $25 per year. Single-copy issues are available for $5 each. Send check, payable to NSSF, to: SHOT Business, c/o NSSF, 11 Mile Hill Road, Newtown, CT 06470-2359. SHOT Business accepts no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts and photographs. All correspondence should be accompanied by a stamped, selfaddressed envelope. Requests for media kits and advertising information should be directed to Katy Marinaro, Bonnier Corporation, 625 N. Michigan Ave., Ste. 1270, Chicago, IL 60611. Periodicals postage paid at New York, NY, and at additional mailing offices. REPRINTS: Wrights Reprints, 877-652-5295. POSTMASTER: Please send address changes to SHOT Business, P.O. Box 422494, Palm Coast, FL 32142-2494. Printed in the USA. For Customer Service and Subscription questions, such as Renewals, Address Changes, Email Preferences, Billing and Account Status, go to: shotbusiness. com/cs. You can also call 386-246-0188 or write to SHOT Business, 2 Park Ave., New York, NY 10016 For editorial inquiries, write to Slaton L. White, SHOT Business, 2 Park Ave., New York, NY 10016

2 ❚ Shot BuSineSS ❚ FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012

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edited by john burgman

Bits & Pieces

Aimpoint Partners with Southern African Wildlife College

aimpoint recently announced that the company has established a sponsor relationship with the southern african wildlife college in the limpopo province of south africa. the school offers formal training programs for regional wildlife and conservation officers, and has trained more than 5,200 students since its inception. the support that aimpoint is providing will help to facilitate the establishment of a newly created professional hunters (ph) training and certification course. the new program will accept its first group of students in june 2012.

justin appenzeller

Sokol Associates to Rep Otis in the Great Lakes Region

otis technology announced a new partnership with sokol associates to provide sales support for dealers, catalog customers, and distributors in the upper midwest and Great lakes regions. Based in oakdale, minnesota, sokol has represented a number of sporting goods brands for more than 30 years. the sokol team includes an active field sales staff to represent the brand within the territory, and will also represent otis at the store level. “we are excited to take our customer focus to the next level in this area of the country,” said otis’ vice president of sales & marketing, len nelson. “this partnership will allow us to best deliver the sales excellence that our customers expect from otis.”

news briefs news

promotions

awards

outreach

Vanguard’s Big Move In 1986, an entrepreneur by the name of Anne Lee hit upon the notion of creating a company that would supply camera buffs with high-quality tripods. She secured a manufacturing facility in China, and by 1992 had established a Vanguard office in the United States and expanded the line to include monopods and ball heads. So, how did this photo-video accessory manufacturer end up in the hunting business? “In 1997, an American rep who was an avid hunter suggested that we get into the outdoors industry,” said Vanguard marketing executive Jody Lamb. “He told the company, ‘You do such a great job with these tripods you really should be making shooting sticks. You could do a great job with that. The same goes for your hard cases for photo gear. You should be making bow and gun cases.’” Lamb said the company did some market research and decided the outdoors industry would be a good fit; the following year, Vanguard began marketing private-label shooting sticks, tripods, and hard cases. A few years later, the company invested in a multi-million-dollar state-of-the-art opticaldesign facility and brought in an expert optical-engineering design team. “I think the most important thing we did was to put together a sales team of hunters—North American hunters—who are involved in product development. I think that gives us a competitive advantage, because these are lifelong hunters who know what works and what doesn’t.” Lee and her team also understood that Vanguard’s long-term success rested on its hard-won reputation for quality. The last thing the manufacturer wanted was to be perceived as just another low-cost, lowquality Asian import. “We spent several years determining what kind of glass and technology were needed to meet the needs of hunters,” said Lamb. “We knew that our products This product is from sustainably managed forests and controlled sources.

The top-of-the-line Endeavor 825 spotting scope sits on an Alta 263AT tripod fitted with the innovative GH-100 GPR (Grip, Position, Release) tripod head.

needed to perform well in low-light conditions and in foul weather.” As just one example of the built-in quality that resulted from the company’s research, Lamb cites the top-of-the line Endeavor ED 1042, which was introduced last year. “This product features an ergonomic, open-bridge design for comfortable use, a wide-angle view, BAK-4 roof prisms, an anti-reflection coating, a large focus adjustment wheel, and long eye relief. The magic behind its performance lies in the premium ED glass, which reduces color dispersion to provide highresolution colors and clarity. And its waterproof and fogproof.” All for a suggested retail of $569. Even better, the street price is more like $399. One big concern for independent retailers has for a long time been the extensive delivery time for imports. Lamb said that because Vanguard is the manufacturer, they are able to control quality and ensure reasonable delivery times, typically within 60 days, to their Michigan office. Vanguard maintains stocks of many of its products— especially its optics—so delivery to dealers is fast. “We know it’s important to get our products to the dealers as quickly as possible,” she said. february/march 2012 ❚ SHot BuSineSS ❚ 5

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news briefs

ATK Expands Its Digital Arsenal CATALOG #64

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Put down that game controller and switch off Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. Even without first-person shooters, there’s plenty of arms and ammunition in the digital space, and forward-thinking companies like ATK are only getting started. “We’re doing a lot of different things in the digital space,” said Reed Stoven, ATK’s digital marketing manager. He’s laid out a comprehensive digital marketing plan, engaging consumers in stores, on their mobile devices—and even their online hangouts. “On the social media side, we’ve got a presence on Facebook, on Twitter, on YouTube. You’re going to see some additional presence coming up with Google+,” he said. “We’re always keeping an eye out for the next big thing.” This, of course, is in addition to ATK’s own social media, Federal Premium’s Stormchasers Network, and Alliant Power and RCBS’s Reloader Hub, two popular sites for waterfowlers and reloading enthusiasts. The sites reach 8,000 and 3,000 members, respectively. “With our digital program, we want to try not just something digital that stands on its own,” said Stoven. “We want to try to weave it in with our other marketing tactics. The QR code is a great example of that.” The QR code is that odd black-andwhite square you sometimes see in the corner of advertisements. Scan it with a smartphone, and it’ll take you to extra content, enhancing the adverting experience. “It’s where the offline and the online world meet,” said Stoven. “What we’re doing is, we’ve employed QR codes on several of the Federal Premium ads, and it takes them to videos that are exclusive to the QR codes and gives them a reason to scan it. It doesn’t bring them to a random landing page, or anything like that. It’s a very specific experience for that QR code.” One such experience is the video clips Fusion Ammunition produced with UFC star Brock Lesnar. “We wanted to create videos that were exclusive for the online space,” said Stoven. “We partnered with Brock in the past, and this year we wanted him to go on the prairie dog hunt. That’s our most successful video to date.” ATK is also reaching customers through their mobile devices. For example, there’s

the Reloader Hub app, a reloading calculator that lets reloaders see the money they’re saving when they compare their supplies to ammo prices. “Our philosophy with apps is that we want to make sure it’s an exclusive experience as well,” said Stoven. “If someone’s taking the time to download that app, we want to make sure it’s really fantastic.” But apps aren’t the whole story. “In the mobile space, we’re looking for new apps for 2012, but we’re also looking to make sure our websites are mobile-enabled,” said Stoven. “So wherever you’re accessing FederalPremium.com, as an example— whether it’s through your desktop computer, your iPhone, your iPad, or an Android tablet—you’ll have an experience that is built for that device, so you’ll never get stuck on anything that’s a bad experience.” Other digital marketing takes the form of in-store kiosks, like Blackhawk’s holster selector. It’s a web tool built for Blackhawk. com, that lets customers find the perfect holster for their handgun. “It’s something that the community was very excited about and wanted us to build,” said Stoven. It’s on the main Blackhawk site, of course, and was ported over to Blackhawk’s Facebook page as well. But with the in-store kiosks, the company also makes it easy for consumers to decide on the right holster when they’re ready to buy. “That’s kind of one of our defining philosophies,” said Stoven. “We’re not trying to build these separate experiences dotted across the online landscape. No matter where that customer goes— whether it’s our Facebook page, online, or in the store—they’re going to be able to have this experience. “I think we’re seeing consumers becoming a lot more savvy,” he said. “Consumers are armed with a whole lot more information, and we want to be right there providing that information for them. “We’re always trying to touch our consumer where they’re going to be,” said Stoven. “Whether that’s in-store, whether it’s in print advertising, or, increasingly, online. We just want to make sure the online experience matches what the consumer experiences instore, or what they experience with print or television advertising.”

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Winchester offers Hunters a Robust Lineup for the new Year Winchester Ammunition has kicked off 2012 with the launch of several new products for sportsmen, and it has also expanded many of its most trusted lines with new offerings. Razorback XT, the world’s first line of cartridges designed specifically for wild hog hunting, headlines its 2012 new hunting products from Winchester. Razorback XT will be offered in two popular sporting calibers—.223 Rem. and .308 Win. “Razorback XT is creating a buzz because of rising wild hog populations in North America and the growing popularity of hog hunting,” said Brett Flaugher, Winchester Ammunition’s vice president of marketing and sales.

Blind Side waterfowl ammunition hit store shelves in 2011 and immediately became the most innovative steel waterfowl load in Winchester history. HEX Shot pellets and the Diamond Cut Wad were popular among waterfowlers, and in 2012, the Blind Side line will expand to include new shot sizes, a 2 3/4-inch shell for 12-gauges, and for the first time, a 20-gauge offering. Big game hunters can be on the lookout for expanded offerings in centerfire rifle product lines. Power Core 95/5 is now available in several new calibers for sportsmen who need a lead-free bullet at an economical price point. Winchester also adds two new calibers to Power Max

Bonded for whitetail hunters, and is adding .204 Ruger in Ballistic Silvertip Lead-Free—a lead-free cartridge for varmint hunters. Winchester is also

adding a cowboy-action cartridge, .45-70 Govt, to its Super-Z line.

Winchester’s new products for 2012 will appeal to all segments of its consumer base.

A New Predator Stalks the Woods Your senses detect movement in the distance, but all you see are trees, brush and cover. Until you look through your Steiner Predator Xtreme riflescope. You scan the cover and….there! Steiner’s unique CAT (Color Adjusted Transmission) lens coating technology increases the level and contrast and definition between game and their surroundings. Browns and grays pop out of background foliage and shade making your target easier to spot. Features include the new Steiner Plex S1 reticle, interchangeable windage/ elevation dials and rugged 30mm tubes. Available in 2.5x-10x-42mm, 3x-12x-56mm and 4x-16x-50mm models.

4x-16x-50mm

A NEW ERA OF INNOVATION www.steiner-binoculars.com

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NEWS BRIEFS

Champion Double-Taps the Zombie Market You know the rules: Get your cardio. Limber up. And most important: Aim for the head, and double-tap. When the zombie apocalypse comes, you want to be ready. No sense in wasting ammo on body shots when the walkers come shambling your way. If your customers are looking to get some practice in before the dead rise, Champion Traps and Targets’ new VisiColor Zombie Targets feature proprietary printing techniques for vivid, highresolution imagery and realism. These large paper targets with eight different shooting scenarios deliver engaging practice options for all ages, and offer a new twist on the zombie craze that has been sweeping the nation. The targets also provide instant feedback. VisiColor technology indicates different shot zones with different colors. Bright radiation green indicates hits to

The VisiColor Zombie targets feature special technology that indicates different shot zones with different colors—a bright green indicates a hit to the vitals, while body shots appear as yellow.

zombie vital zones. Body shots deliver fluorescent yellow reactions. Misses and accidental hits to hostages and background areas appear white. Shooters can blast these creepy characters back to the grave—engaging practice in the backyard or at the range.

The targets are available in two 6-count (“Attack” and “Hostage,” $10.95) and 50-count (“Door Breech” and “Street Attack,” $66.95) packs. The targets are perfect for competitive shooting fun— and, like the undead, customers will keep coming back for more.

New MTAC™ Riflescopes

Burris offers an MTAC scope for any competitive stage, combat situation or hunting application. With an advanced optical system that is virtually identical to ultra-premium scopes, MTAC riflescope offer precision ground optical glass that is index-matched and fully multi-coated with HiLume™ for clear, sharp, high-resolution images. In addition they offer: • Rugged 30mm Tubes • Up to 4 inches of Eye Relief • Rubber-Coated Eyepiece • Deep Relief, Ergonomic Power Ring Available models: • 1x-4x-24mm • 1.5x-6x-40mm • 3.5x-10x-42mm • 4.5x-14-42mm • 6.5x-20x-50mm

burrisoptics.com

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Ballistic CQ 5.56/7.62

G2B Mil-Dot with matching 1/10 Mil Adjustments

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Timney Offers Hands-Free Trigger As an aftermarket trigger manufacturer, Timney Triggers has a reputation for responding to customers’ requests when it comes time to develop and market a new replacement trigger. But for the company’s newest product—a hands-free device that allows physically challenged shooters to engage their rifle’s trigger— Timney president John Vehr made it personal. “A close friend’s father ended up in a wheelchair after a serious accident years ago,” said Vehr. “He was always super-outdoorsy, and even after the accident found a way to keep hunting. I helped him put Timney triggers in his

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guns, and continued to lighten them up for him as the years have gone by and his hand muscles have deteriorated. Today, he barely has the ability to pull a one-pound trigger.” With his friend’s triggers set as light as possible, Vehr started thinking about other ways to fire a rifle without the use of one’s finger or hands. A chance meeting at a local gun range with another disabled shooter fanned the spark into a flame. “I was sighting in a rifle and the guy next to me asked me to go downrange to pick up his target,” said Vehr. “Until then, I hadn’t noticed his crutches. We got to talking about

shooting, and he mentioned how the limited mobility in his fingers was affecting his accuracy. When I told him I was in the trigger business, it was like a light when off in both our heads.” The man, Mike Amboy, described coming up with a trigger activated by the mouth rather than your fingers. Vehr brought Amboy into the Timney Trigger shop and introduced him to Calvin Motley, Timney’s director of product development. After a lengthy product development cycle, Vehr, Amboy, and Motley came up with a product that not only worked, but could be easily installed by people

with mobility issues. The Timney HandsFree Trigger, which was launched at the 2012 SHOT Show, bolts to the trigger guard of a Ruger 10/22 and utilizes a bitedevice to engage an actuator lever that pulls the rifle’s trigger. A Universal Adapter Kit is available to fit rifles of any model and caliber, offering disabled shooters the versatility of moving the Hands-Free Trigger among all their firearms. For Vehr, the HandsFree Trigger is a way for Timney to deliver on its mission to enhance performance for shooters of all abilities. “Everyone should have a good trigger,” said Vehr. —David Draper

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NEWS BRIEFS

Zeiss Optics Announces High-End Binocular Promotion for 2012 Carl Zeiss Sports Optics kicked off the new became an industry standard in the superyear with a promotion that gives consumers premium category. Over the years, the an opportunity to save hundreds of dollars Victory FL binoculars have received Field on the company’s Victory binocular line. & Stream magazine’s Best of the Best The promotion began on January 1, award and Outdoor Life magazine’s and will run until June 1, 2012. Zeiss is Editor’s Choice, among other honors. offering a $300 mail-in-rebate to consum“We will continue to offer our cusers who purchase any Victory RF laser tomers exceptional value and quality,” rangefinding binocular, available in said Michael A. Jensen, president of 8x45, 10x45, 8x56, and 10x56 models. Carl Zeiss Sports Optics. “Special proThe Zeiss Victory RF has won Outdoor motions like these on our top-of-theLife magazine’s Editor’s Choice award, line products are a way to say ‘thank and has received high marks from a you’ to the outdoors community, and number of other media outlets as well. they also give many more hunters The binocular features a Ballistic and outdoors enthusiasts a chance to Information System (BIS) that provides own Zeiss’ award-winning, super-precorrect holdover information for the mium optics.” shooter’s particular load. All rebate submissions must be comZeiss is also offering a $200 mail-inpleted and postmarked within 30 days rebate on its 7x42, 8x42, and 10x42 of the purchase date in order for cusVictory FL binoculars during the same tomers to receive their rebate, which The 8x42 Victory FL binocular is just one time frame. The Victory FL binoculars will be issued via an American Express of the models that is eligible for a $200 were the first sporting binoculars with Gift Card. Full promotion details are mail-in rebate until June 1, 2012. fluoride glass, which subsequently available at zeiss.com/sports.

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1/13/12 12:50 PM


On the Move

New and noteworthy hirings and promotions in the industry

Terry Snider

Clothing-maker 180s recently hired Terry Snider as vice president of sales. Snider, a sales veteran of 20 years, previously served as director of sales for Kozy Shack Enterprises, and senior vice president of sales for the OneCare Company, supporting brands including Clorox, Febreze, and Downy.

Robin Leong

In December, Columbia River Knife & Tool named Robin Leong to the position of vice president of engineering and product development. In his new position, Leong will monitor quality levels and cost controls, as well as help to ensure that the company’s overall product line continues its course of growth and innovation.

Jason Schmaderer

Swanson Russell recently promoted Jason Schmaderer to vice president/ account supervisor. Schmaderer began his career with Swanson Russell in 1998 as a public relations writer, and was quickly promoted to public relations associate and later to public relations counsel.

Chiappa Releases S&W Revolver Chiappa Firearms debuted its new Rhino Revolver—a .40 S&W caliber handgun—at the 2012 SHOT Show in Las Vegas. The Rhino Revolver is designed to fire from the bottom chamber of the cylinder, which results in less recoil and affords accurate, quick firing if so desired by the shooter. The new .40-caliber Chiappa Revolver utilizes full-moon clips to hold the rimless

.40-caliber rounds. In addition to the handgun, Chiappa also showcased a number of new and forthcoming firearms at its SHOT Show booth, including a number of .45-70 Series rifles, M9-22, Hi-Points Firearms, and the Tuff1 Slip On Grip covers, which utilize a proprietary formula for a gun grip that fits on nearly every polymerhandled firearm on the market.

HUNTING GETS TACTICAL

RECON™ Series With VAC™

��� Rugged, Military-inspired construction in a light weight, compact design • 1,000+ yard ranging ability • Uses Opti-Logic’s patented VAC™ Ballistic Compensating Technology • Exceptional optical quality • Affordably priced

.40-Caliber Specifications

CALIBER: .40 S&W semi-auto round; five moon clips come with each revolver BARREL LENGTHS: 2-, 4-, 5-, and 6-inch BASIC WEIGHT: 25 ounces, with the 4-inch barrel

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FRAME: Ergal (aluminum alloy), cylinder, barrel, and internal parts 4140 alloy steel METAL FINISH: Blued STOCKS: Composite rubber or wood SRP: 2-inch, $839; 4-inch, $929; 5-inch, $949; 6-inch, $989

Made In the USA

OPTI-LOGIC.com 1-888-OPTILOG

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news briefs

HPR Ammunition Storms the Firearms and Hunting Industry in 2012 with High Performance Ammo Payson, Arizona–based HPR (High Precision Range) has been distributing ammunition regionally for the last 18 months, but recently decided to step out on the national scene. The company has officially opened its doors to national distribution, although production will continue to be based in Arizona. As has been the case in its regional past, HPR’s factory will meet SAAMI Specs, and all production will continue to be directly handled by ammunition technicians and quality control inspectors led by the company’s own engineering staff. With a team of design engineers, HPR recently built a manufacturing plant that

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includes an art test lab per SAAMI specifications, utilizing testing equipment from Oehler Research and PCB Piezontronics. The company also handinspects and hand-packages all its ammunition, and aims to be one of the major players in the commercially produced ammunition game in the coming year and beyond. HPR currently produces ammunition in a number of calibers, including .223 Remington, .223 V-Max, 10mm Auto, 10mm Auto XTP, .380 Auto, .380 Auto XTP, .38 Special, .38 Special XTP .40 S&W, .40 S&W XTP, .45 Auto, .45 Auto XTP, 9mm Luger, and 9mm XTP.

HPR ammunition that will now be distributed nationally include .223 Remington, .223 V-Max, .380 Auto, and .38 Special.

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Bushnell Expands Its No-Risk, Money-Back Guarantee Bushnell Outdoor Products recently expanded its Bulletproof Guarantee to include several leading lines of binoculars, riflescopes, and spotting scopes, as well as the company’s entire line of hunting laser rangefinders. Originally introduced with the Legend Ultra HD binocular product line in 2011, Bushnell guaranteed that if customers were not completely satisfied with the product, the company would buy it back— no questions asked—for up to one year

from the original date of purchase. For 2012, Bushnell has expanded the Bulletproof Guarantee to cover the Elite, Excursion EX, Legacy WP, Legend Ultra HD, and Trophy XLT families of binoculars; Elite, Legend Ultra HD, and Trophy XLT families of riflescopes and spotting scopes; and all hunting laser rangefinders. “At Bushnell, performance is everything, and our new Bulletproof Guarantee lets consumers validate that firsthand,” said Phil Gyori, Bushnell Outdoor Products executive vice president of marketing. “Consumers have trusted Bushnell to deliver quality and dependable products for more than 60 years. Now they can try Bushnell risk-free, knowing that we are so confident in our products we stand behind them 100 percent.”

With Bushnell’s no-risk, money-back guarantee, consumers are free to return binoculars that don’t meet their performance needs.

Taurus Announces Availability of 22/25 PLY Pocket Pistol Taurus recently released two new handguns designed primarily for concealed-carry. The 22PLY and 25PLY, in polymer frames, make already light guns into super-light firearms that weigh 10.8 ounces. Both models feature a blowback action and tip-up barrel design for the added convenience of not having to rack the gun before shooting. Reverse fish-scale serrations on the slide add to the sleek look of the gun,

22/25 PLY SPECS

while an extended magazine base and full-body contouring provides a larger, improved, and more comfortable grip. The trigger guard is designed for added finger purchases. Both models’ magazine releases are located on the trigger guard for quick changes. For safety, Taurus has incorporated the magazine disconnect and a manual safety on both the 22PLY and 25PLY.

CALiber: .22 LR or .25 ACP ACTiOn: DAO frAMe: Polymer with steel inserts bArreL: Tip-up barrel (for convenience and safety) finisH: Matte black or stainless steel siGHTs: Front/rear; fixed weiGHT: 10.8 ounces CAPACiTY: 8+1 (.22 LR) or 9+1 (.25 ACP) OVerALL LenGTH: 4.8 inches GriPs: Polymer

Parabellum Signs With Laura Burgess

Parabellum Armament Company recently announced that it has signed Laura Burgess Marketing to promote its brand, market new products, and provide writer support. Parabellum designed and patented the AK Adaptive Rail System (AKARS), a riflemounted upgraded rail system that replaced the traditional rear sight and receiver bolt cover on the Kalashnikov rifle, 1947 model (AK-47), and its variants. The AKARS upgrade eliminates traditional AK limitations and provides better accuracy by allowing the user to mount weapon optics and lasers using the 1913 Picatinny rail design. The AKARS 3-finger hinge system provides a solid foundation that eliminates any side-to-side movement and guarantees a return to zero, even after extensive firing. The AKARS can be disengaged by the release button located on the system’s top cover mount, allowing for regular maintenance without the use of tools. Even when disengaged, the optic can remain mounted. The patented hinge system has two safety tabs that prevent the optic-mounted rail system from hitting the handguard in front of the mount. Laura Burgess Marketing will be providing Parabellum with public relations, marketing, advertising, social media, and writer relations. Parabellum, which is based in Cincinnati, Ohio, and focuses exclusively on USA-made tactical gear and accessories, is owned and operated by combat veterans. The company was in attendance at the 2012 SHOT Show in January.

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news briefs

Flextone Gets Electronic with Echo HD 80 Call Flextone Game Calls recently introduced its new Echo HD 80 electronic call. The Echo HD 80 is a more advanced electronic call than other models, with features designed to make more realistic animal sounds. True to its name, the Echo HD 80 comes pre-loaded with 80 high-definition calls and is programmable to give the user multiple hunting scenarios. Pre-loaded categories include bear, bird distress, bobcat, cougar, coyote, crow, elk, fox, hog, moose, owl, prairie dog, rabbit, raccoon, snow goose, squirrel, turkey, whitetail deer, and wolf. The Echo HD 80 features a large backlit LCD screen with two non-distortion speakers that spin 360 degrees, giving a natural sound. The handheld remote activation is included for ease of setup, and can be activated up to 300 yards away. The handheld remote comes with a docking station in the base unit for recharging. Like the original Echo HD and the handheld trigger-activated Mimic HD, the Echo HD 80 is water-resistant and rubber-coated to increase practicality in a number of weather conditions.

ECHO HD 80 FEATURES:

▶ Large backlit programming LCD ▶ 2 multi-directional speakers ▶ Remote-control activation ▶ Rubber coating ▶ Unit- and remote-activated calls ▶ Pre-loaded with 80 animal calls ▶ Weighs 3 pounds

Safariland’s Online Holsters Safariland has come up with an easy way for consumers to select the proper holster fit from among the wide selection of Safariland and Bianchi holsters. With the company’s new online Holster Finder application, website users select the firearm type, choose the firearm manufacturer, and then select the gun model. Once the gun is selected, users can scroll through all holsters offered, or further narrow down the selection by choosing a type (tactical, concealment, etc.). Once the desired holster is found, users click on the Details tab to see more information about the base holster model, including the various configurations in which it can be purchased. The Finder can be used via safariland.com, safariland.com/ dutygear, holsters.com, and bianchi-intl.com.

Leupold Offers Customized Dials with Riflescope Purchase Leupold has launched a program to give back to customers who purchase their riflescopes in the new year. In a program that began in January and continues until April 1, 2012, the company is offering consumers two customized adjustment dials ($100 value) with the purchase of VX-2, VX-3, VX-3L, VX-R, or VX-6 riflescopes. Leupold has significantly increased the number of riflescope models available with the VX customized dials system (CDS) in 2012, responding to demand from hunters and shooters seeking to maximize accuracy at longer ranges. The CDS system helps users get on target at ranges out to 600 yards, with any load, by matching their riflescope to the ballistics of their

ammunition. Matched to specific ballistics information provided by the user, the custom adjustment allows a shooter to quickly dial the elevation to different sight-in ranges. The dials change out easily, allowing flexibility with different loads and calibers. CDS has precision ¼-MOA click

increment finger adjustments, and there are no adjustment covers to lose. More details on the CDS system can be found at leupold.com/VX-3CDS. Visitors to this microsite will find educational graphics, as well as an overview of how the system works and its benefits. Leupold VX CDS riflescopes can be found at more than 2,000 certified Golden Ring dealers, and at major retail outlets, including Cabela’s, Gander Mountain, Bass Pro Shops, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Academy Sports + Outdoors, and Scheels. Leupold’s customized dials coincide with the industry trend of increased accuracy at greater distances.

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The New Fiocchi of America Cowboy Ammo is here. Distinctively packaged in aged boxes, the SASS approved Cowboy Loads are now available in 32 S&W Long, 38 S&W Short, 38 Special, 357 Magnum, 44 Special, 44-40 & 45 Colt. More calibers to come in 2012.

Cowboy Loads Since 1876

For the Fiocchi dealer near you, Call 417.449.1043 / visit www.ďŹ occhiusa.com

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B Y L A W R E N C E G . K E A N E , N S S F S R . V. P. A N D G E N E R A L C O U N S E L

U P D AT E

FROM THE NSSF

Fighting for Your Rights NSSF is ever vigilant on the governmental front

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he National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) has had an extremely busy year fighting for the rights of industry members. NSSF has thwarted attacks on traditional ammunition— that is, ammunition with a lead component—championed legislation to protect and preserve hunting and shooting sports, and has been involved in several lawsuits challenging government regulations attempting to restrict NSSF members from freely engaging in the lawful commerce of firearms, which is their business and livelihood. Thanks to NSSF, efforts by the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) and other anti-hunting groups to ban the use of traditional ammunition were rejected with a one-two punch, first by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and then by a federal court. Congress spoke loud and clear 35 years ago when it passed the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), which specifically exempted ammunition from regulation by the EPA. Unable to convince EPA officials that the agency had authority to regulate lead components of ammunition, the CBD sued the EPA in federal court to force its hand (Center for Biological Diversity v. Jackson). NSSF quickly intervened in the lawsuit and wasted no time in successfully persuading the court to dismiss CBD’s case. To prevent future attacks on the rights of sportsmen to use the ammunition of their choice, NSSF is championing a federal bill to clarify the longstanding exemption of ammunition and ammunition components under TSCA. Known as the Hunting, Fishing, and Recreational Shooting Sports Protection Act (S. 838 and H.R.1558), the bill has tremendous bipartisan support in both the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate, with 159 House and 27 Senate co-sponsors. Last July, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) sent a “demand letter” to 8,700 federal firearms licensees (FFLs), including law-abiding NSSF members, located in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California demanding them to record and report multiple sales of certain semi-automatic rifles. Because the ATF exceeded the authority Congress has granted it, NSSF filed a federal lawsuit (NSSF v. Jones) to block the ATF

from imposing this new regulation because it was the proverbial “slippery slope.” As of press time, the court has yet to rule on the NSSF lawsuit. NSSF filed this lawsuit because if ATF can require this information from these dealers, then ATF would be able to require reporting of any information it wants from any licensee simply by sending a letter demanding the information. Congressional leaders agreed with NSSF and in April offered an amendment that passed the House by a wide bi-partisan margin that would restrain ATF from exceeding its authority. Unfortunately, the Senate failed to move the bill. Several bills aimed at restraining ATF’s overreach were introduced. In November, the mainstream media reported that internal ATF e-mails from 2010 showed that some officials planned to use rifles sold by retailers cooperating with the ATF in its flawed “Fast and Furious” operation to justify ATF’s new multiple-sales reporting requirements. NSSF has also filed numerous amicus curiae, or “friend of the court,” briefs in federal and state appellate courts this past year to protect the industry’s commercial interests. In a case before the Ohio Supreme Court in late 2011 (Cleveland v. Ohio), NSSF successfully fought to uphold Ohio’s firearms pre-emption statute. If Ohio’s preemption statute were not upheld, firearms ordinances adopted by the City of Cleveland and other Ohio municipalities would have resulted in a complex patchwork of different restrictions that would have been unevenly enforced from one jurisdiction to another. In a case pending before the Illinois Supreme Court (Wilson v. Cook County),

NSSF is supporting a challenge to Cook County’s broad and sweeping “assault-weapons” ordinance banning the manufacture, sale, and possession of several popular classes of semi-automatic firearms, including commonly owned and used modern sporting rifles (MSRs), simply because of their cosmetic features. In its amicus brief, NSSF provided information from its MSR Comprehensive Consumer Report to educate the court about MSRs and their owners and the lawful purposes for which MSRs are commonly and widely used—hunting, target shooting, collecting, and self defense. In a case pending before the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals (Jennings v. BATFE), NSSF is supporting a lawsuit seeking to overturn federal restrictions on the purchase of handguns by 18- to 20-yearolds. Individuals of this age are considered adults for virtually every other purpose, so they should also be able to purchase handguns from licensed firearms retailers. NSSF members provide lawful commerce in firearms that makes the exercise of an individual’s constitutional right to keep and bear arms possible. Whenever the rights of its members to engage in their business and livelihood are threatened, NSSF will take action to defend these rights. Editor’s Note: NSSF associate general counsel Jeff Yue and manager, government relations, Ryan Cleckner contributed to the preparation of this article.

Lawrence G. Keane

Senior Vice President & General Counsel, NSSF FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012 ❚ SHOT BUSINESS ❚ 17

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u p d at e

from the nssf

Hunting Statistics Bear Out The Safety of Hunting The National Shooting Sports Foundation has compiled data that shows hunting ranks third in safety when compared to 28 other recreational pursuits, ranging from baseball to wrestling. Hunting with firearms has an injury rate of 0.05 percent, which equates to about 1 injury per 2,000 participants, a safety level bettered only by camping (.01 percent) and billiards (.02 percent). For comparison, golf has an injury rate of 0.16 percent (1 injury per 622 participants), while tackle football topped the list of activities, with an injury rate of 5.27 percent (1 injury per 19 participants). “Many people have the misconception that hunting is unsafe, but the data tells a different story,” said Jim Curcuruto, NSSF’s director of industry research and analysis. “Hunter education classes that

emphasize the basic rules of firearms safety and a culture of hunters helping fellow hunters practice safe firearms handling in the field are responsible for this good record.” The number of hunters who went afield last year is estimated at 16.3 million. Of that total, approximately 8,122 sustained injuries, or 50 per 100,000 participants. The vast majority of hunting accidents—more than 6,600—were treestand-related. Though recent accurate figures on fatalities related to hunting are

not available, statistics from 2002 show 99 fatal hunting accidents. The injury data NSSF used to compile this hunter-safety report comes from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System of the Consumer Products Safety Commission 2010 and the International Hunter Education Association’s Hunter Incident Clearinghouse. Activity participation figures are from the National Sporting Goods Association Sports Participation in 2010 report.

Hunting ranks third in safety when compared to 28 other recreational pursuits.

TO puT HunTing’S SafeTy STanding in perSpecTive, cOmpared TO wHile HunTing, a perSOn iS… ▶ 11 times more likely to be injured playing volleyball ▶ 19 times more likely to be injured snowboarding ▶ 25 times more likely to be injured

cheerleading or bicycle riding ▶ 34 times more likely to be injured playing soccer or skateboarding ▶ 105 more times likely to be injured playing tackle football

Firearms industry, nation Celebrate A Conservation Milestone Following the 50th anniversary in 2011 of the National Shooting Sports Foundation comes another highly significant milestone in 2012: the 75th anniversary of what is arguably the most important event in the preservation and conservation of American wildlife and the ability to sustain hunting as part of the nation’s heritage. In 1937, the passage of historic legislation—the Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration Act (P-R Act)— fostered partnerships among the sporting arms industry, federal and state wildlife and fisheries agencies, conservation groups, and sportsmen to benefit wildlife. It has been

key to implementing the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation. In 1950, the Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Act

(now the Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration Act) was enacted, and, together, the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program has contributed more than $12 billion to wildlife and fisheries conservation

in the U.S.—more than any other single conservation effort. The P-R Act alone, which requires an excise tax on firearms and ammunition—a concept that was suggested and self-imposed by the industry—has provided more than $7.2 billion to wildlife management. NSSF, which provided space in the NSSF Press Room at the SHOT Show to promote this anniversary, urges members to incorporate the special Pittman-Robertson logo along with a note of appreciation for the program on their websites and in their communications and other materials.

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nSSF Website, Literature 2011 Record Are in Demand Year for The value of NSSF’s communications vehicles was reflected in 2011 by the demand from industry, media, and hunting and shooting sports community. NSSF’s website—nssf .org—received more than 5 million visits in 2011. Requests for nine publications and DVDs, which addressed conservation, hunting ethics, and firearms safety, averaged more than 186,000 per month, or nearly 2.25 million for the year. The quality of communications vehicles was recognized with several awards in 2011. NSSF’s 50th anniversary video received the Apex Award of Excellence and a Bronze Telly. Its Annual Review, which included a DVD of the 50th anniversary

video, earned the PR News Nonprofit PR Awards’ top prize for in the annual brochure or publication category. The electronic weekly Bullet Points captured an APEX Grand Award of Excellence, and the NSSF was a finalist in several other PR News Nonprofit categories. Among those receiving honorable mentions were NSSF’s Hunting Works for America initiative (“Advocacy Campaign” and “Public Affairs/Issues Management” categories) and Bullet Points (Digital PR & Marketing). Mark Thomas (pictured), NSSF managing director of marketing communications, was runner-up in PR News Nonprofit Publication category for PR Marketing Communicator of the Year.

pull the Trigger Hits its mark In its first full year of development, Pull the Trigger was distributed to more than 1 million readers.

In 2011, in its the first full year of developmen, the electronic newsletter Pull the Trigger was distributed to more than 1 million readers, including a mailing list of more than 900,000 provided by GunBroker.com. NSSF aims this monthly communication at getting new and lapsed shooters and hunters to do just what the name

says: pull the trigger. Most of the helpful items are linked to videos that bring the words and concepts of the shooting sports to life. “Pull the Trigger is an innovative NSSF program designed to motivate new and existing shooters to go afield or to the range,” said Steve Sanetti, NSSF president and chief executive officer. “From what we are seeing in terms of readers and their comments, it is accomplishing its mission, and we encourage you to not only read it but also help distribute its content.” For a free subscription, go to nssf.org/ enewsletters/. Members and others who disseminate information on hunting and the shooting sports are encouraged to reproduce content from Pull the Trigger in their own communications vehicles.

nSSF Membership

In 2011, membership in the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the trade association of the firearms, ammunition, hunting, and shooting sports industry, rose to an all-time high, nearing 7,000. That means NSSF’s membership has doubled in less than five years. Voting Membership, made up of the NSSF’s most financially supportive members, was bolstered with the addition of more than a dozen new companies that stepped up to assume that highly respected and appreciated status. Membership is made up of manufacturers, distributors, firearms retailers, shooting ranges, sportsmen’s organizations, and publishers. “With every member adding a key building block to the industry’s foundation, NSSF has assumed a position of strength perhaps unparalleled in its 50-year history,” said Steve Sanetti, NSSF president and chief executive officer.

The number of NSSF members in 2012 now exceeds 7,000, meaning its membership has doubled in less than five years.

© 2012 National Shooting Sports Foundation, Inc. All Rights Reserved. SHOT Business®, SHOT Show® and all other trade names, trademarks and service marks of the National Shooting Sports Foundation appearing in this publication are the sole property of the Foundation and may not be used without the Foundation’s prior express written permission. All other company and product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.

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u p d at e

B Y T I S M A J U E T T, M A N A G E R , F I R S T S H O T S

Yo u S h o u l d K n o w

Take Your Initial Shot at First Shots NSSF’s introductory program is a proven winner

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he time is approximately 8:38 a.m., and people are starting to roll in for a 9:00 class. They wonder if they are in the right place as they check in. They are assured they are. The silence is deafening. Why so tense? At 9 a.m., the instructor stands at the front of the room and states, “Welcome to First Shots!” For someone unfamiliar with the shooting sports, a firearm can be a mysterious tool—like any other tool for which the user doesn’t have proper education and training. First Shots was designed as a way for member ranges to create opportunities for new shooters to visit their facilities, learn about firearm safety and fundamentals, safe storage and use, and ownership regulations, and then shoot in a closely

someone to try the shooting sports without making a financial commitment. Customer participation is free. The classes are short, taking only three hours out of their day. What might have been apprehension becomes fun. After they take their first shots at your range, you will have created loyalty in these new shooters. They will want to come back to your range to shoot with you, because you will become their mentor, and they will seek you out for advice, classes, equipment, and supplies.

First Shots was designed as a way for member ranges to create opportunities for new shooters to learn about the shooting sports and take a step toward lifelong participation. supervised, unintimidating atmosphere. They learn about the shooting sports and, hopefully, take their first step toward lifelong participation. Currently First Shots is on a nationwide city tour. What we learned from our first stop in Chicago, Illinois, and Madison, Wisconsin, is that people want to be educated about firearms and the shooting sports. The problem is that they don’t know where to go or how to get started. All five of the Chicago area ranges were full by the second week registration was opened. The three ranges in Madison were full not long after. We are anticipating the same as we move next to Sacramento, California, and Miami, Florida, on March 3. You, however, can plan a First Shots anytime. First Shots provides an opportunity for

Six-month follow-up surveys of First Shots participants show that 43 percent have returned to the host range an average of six times, 56 percent have met local requirements for handgun ownership, and 49 percent have purchased an average of $560 of equipment. NSSF offers a great deal of assistance in planning and hosting a First Shots event. The easy-to-use reference guide helps in every step of the planning phase of the event. A PowerPoint presentation is available to assist with the classroom portion. NSSF provides targets, ammunition, and safety brochures, as well as funding for cooperative advertising. NSSF will reimburse 50 percent of a shooting facility’s advertising costs, up to $3,000. The NSSF graphics team will create camera-ready ads

for print publications. We have television and radio spots designed to get the attention of prospective participants and direct them to your range. And if questions come up, as manager of First Shots, I am just a phone call or e-mail away. Hosting a First Shots event will take less time to plan and execute than trying to pack for a hunting trip. Each class is approximately three hours long. That is 90 minutes in the classroom and another 90 minutes on the range. This short time period allows you to host multiple events in one day to maximize your time, preparation, and advertising costs. By hosting a First Shots event you are not only providing an opportunity for someone to give the shooting sports a try, but you are also helping to influence newcomers who may not have had an opinion on gun control. When new shooters see a program like First Shots and us as an industry promoting safe and responsible firearms ownership and usage, they are able to view the firearms industry in a different light from what is shown on television and in mass media. It is not an overstatement to say participation as a host of a First Shots event can help secure our Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms. By the end of the First Shots event, the room is no longer quiet. Folks have been high-fiving at the range, and once back in the classroom, smiles are beaming and eyes are brighter. The tension is gone. The apprehension has been replaced with laughter, camaraderie, and confidence. They will be back to shoot again. Learn more about hosting a First Shots event at nssf.org/FirstShots.

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BY GEORGE ROMANOFF, PRESIDENT, ACE SPORTING GOODS, WASHINGTON, PA

U P D AT E

FROM MY SIDE OF THE COUNTER

Retailer Education Seminars

A free program that, in many ways, helps an FFL do business

E

ditor’s Note: With this article, SHOT Business begins a new series, “From My Side of the Counter,” which will feature articles on services and issues of importance to the firearms retailer. The articles will be written by members of the NSSF Retailer Advisory Committee and other guest authors. I’d read several articles about the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s Retailer Education Seminars. NSSF would post the results in its Bullet Points e-newsletter about where the seminars were held and the subject matter that was covered. At last, I received an invitation to one of these seminars in the mail. As I read the invitation, it became very clear to me that this was one seminar I could not afford to miss. One of the reasons that I couldn’t afford to miss it was that it was free! The

were all there to meet the NSSF, ATF, and NICS. The half-day seminar began promptly at 1 p.m. Introductions of the presenters was the first thing on the agenda, and from there the seminar was in high gear. The first speaker, a representative of the local ATF office, spoke to the group about the top 10 instances where firearms retailers struggle with compliance. Some of the reasons listed were improperly filling out the 4473 form and making recording errors in the A&D book.

More than 110 other firearms retailers were at the seminar for the very same reasons I was. I was greeted at the door, and as I entered the room, my competitive side of the business went out the door. Today, we were all there to meet the NSSF, ATF, and NICS. seminar was being held about 50 minutes away from my store in Pittsburgh. The hotel that they had chosen was perfect as it was very easy to find and there was ample parking for the event. When I got there that day, I was very surprised. More than 110 other firearms retailers were there for the very same reasons I was. I was greeted at the door and signed the registration form. As I entered the room, my competitive side of the business went out the door. Today we

The seminar presenters also covered other subject areas. For example, one speaker emphasized that proper inventory procedure at the store level is critical to your business. Multiple-gun sales forms and lost or stolen firearms procedures were also covered in great detail. I did a lot of note-taking throughout the day. One of the other speakers was from NICS. The presentation was very informative for the retailers. I learned in

detail the background check procedure and the E-Check process. In addition, the NICS presenter provided information on how to deal with customers who are denied due to the background check and how to work through the appeal process. NICS also went into detail about the “Non-U.S. Citizens” background check process and what the stores must do in these situations. A representative from the National Shooting Sports Foundation was there, too. The NSSF representative spoke to the retail group about the accomplishments of NSSF over the past year. In addition, he outlined all of the benefits of being a member of NSSF. The benefits that NSSF has set up for the retailers are incredible. My membership dues are only $150. One of the many benefits for retailers is NSSF’s ATF consultant program. NSSF has contracted with a former ATF deputy assistant director to come to your store and train the store personnel for compliance. Based on the testimonials from the other retailers who have taken advantage of this training, if I availed myself of this consultation, I’d be well prepared for the ATF if I were ever to receive an audit. At the end of the day I left the seminar with a pad full of notes, answers to what had been, up to then, nagging questions, and a renewed motivation to get back to my store and implement many of the things I had learned. I scheduled a store meeting with all of my employees the very next day after the seminar. It got them excited to execute the ideas that I had brought home with me. FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012 ❚ SHOT BUSINESS ❚ 21

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NSSF DELIVERS VALUE FIRST SHOTS CREATES NEW SHOOTERS—AND CUSTOMERS NSSF’s First Shots seminar is a proven means of introducing firsttime shooters to firearms safety and the shooting sports. This combination of classroom discussion on firearms fundamentals, safety, and ownership laws, along with a closely supervised live-firing opportunity, brought 5,000 new shooters to partner ranges in 2011—and studies show that many returned for more instruction and shooting opportunities. The NSSF provides tremendous support to member ranges wishing to host a First Shots. For more information, visit firstshots.org, or contact Tisma Juett, NSSF First Shots manager, at tjuett@nssf.org.

N

ONE MEMBER’S EXPERIENCE Member: Michael Barbour, president Business: Top Gun Shooting Sports Inc. Taylor, Michigan Description of Business: “Top Gun Shooting Sports Inc. is a successful shooting range and retail store in the heart of southeastern Michigan. We supply everything from tactical to practical for beginners to First Responders. One of our continuing goals is to Michael Barbour provide top-rate customer service to all that enter our doors. We treat every customer equally and with the utmost respect. Top Gun Shooting Sports provides its customers with the tools and accessories they need. For more information please visit tgssinc.com.” Experience with First Shots: “We hold First Shots at least once a month, with a maximum of 20 students. Our First Shots classes are always full and booked two months in advance. That means 20 guaranteed new shooters in our store every month. We give them an additional hour of free range time, which turns into new customers buying ammunition and renting guns. We see approximately 25 percent of the students who take First Shots continuing on with a basic handgun course and a concealed-carry course and then buying an annual membership. The First Shots program is unique in that it turns non-shooters into shooters and, with a minimum of effort, expands my customer base. All ranges should take advantage of this ‘no-brainer’ opportunity to grow both the shooting sports and their customer base.” Value of NSSF Membership: “The NSSF provides us with a great many tools that help our facility sell, promote, and protect the shooting sports. Many of these tools simply make doing our jobs easier. The NSSF helps keep us informed on new products through the wonderful opportunity that the SHOT Show offers as well as what is happening in the global industry of firearms. Support like this is very valuable and appreciated by Top Gun Shooting Sports Inc.”

Interested in NSSF Membership? Promoting the great American tradition of hunting and shooting is what the National Shooting Sports Foundation is all about. For our members, it’s more than a sport; it’s a way of life. Join the more than 7,000 companies and individuals who have already discovered that NSSF Delivers Value! To learn more, visit www.nssf.org/join or contact Bettyjane Swann, NSSF director of member services, at 203-426-1320 or bswann@nssf.org.

WWW.NSSF.ORG 22 • SHOT BUSINESS • MONTH 2010

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1/6/12 2:17 PM


FYI

by scoTT besTul

Vital Signs

Retailers from across the country tell us what sold in 2011 and their outlook for 2012

I

t’s tough to sugarcoat the general state of the U.S. economy, but retailers in the shooting sports are reporting a stellar year in 2011. I called the owners of six shops around the country and asked them what their strong sellers were from last season and the hot-ticket items they were anticipating for the coming months. Here are their responses. Self-defense, especially concealed-carry, was one of the big trends in 2011, and this area should see even more growth in 2012. Retailers also noted that quality products that were priced right also moved.

□ RIchaRd SpRague, SpRague SpoRtIng goodS, Yuma, aZ: “I

expected the wheels to fall off the MSR craze in ’09, and I was just dead wrong. The Smith & Wesson Sport 15 was a great seller for us last year—it was a quality gun at a good price point with a strong warranty. We also saw a big surge in other tactical and self-defense lines, and we sold a bunch of suppressors and silencers. Most important for us, we enjoyed double-digit growth in our range use, which in turn drove gun and ammo sales. The two go hand-in-hand.” □ JaSon gIlbeRt, gIlbeRt’S gunS, FRankFoRt, kY: “We had two days in

December when we broke single-day sales records, and those were high-volume marks

to crack. Our handgun sales have grown every year for the last 20 years. We had a great run on the anniversary of the 1911 and on self-defense guns like the S&W Bodyguard. We also sold a lot of bolt guns in the $300 to $400 price range—models like the Marlin XL7, the Ruger America, and the Savage Axis. I think 2012 will be another great year for tactical guns.” □ glenn duncan, duncan’S outdooR Shop, baY cItY, mI: “We

just ended a fantastic year, and our December was the best ever. We stuck a 15-percent-off coupon in a flier and it just brought a huge response. We sold 130 used handguns in one month, and any time I get a bunch of used guns off the shelf I’m happy. We saw very little traffic

in the high-end-rifle market. That said, anything that was a good product but economical—like the Marlins—sold very well. That trend carried over into safes; people wanted a sturdy, fire-lined safe at a reasonable price. We sold a bunch of them.” □ laRRY hYatt, hYatt’S gun Shop, chaRlotte, nc: “An exceptional year

here; we broke one-day and one-week sales records in December. Oddly, the .308-caliber rifle was a big hit for us this season— didn’t matter if it was a high-end tactical/ sniper rifle or a low-end hunting model. In handguns, anything in 9mm was a hot seller. Handgun accessories just keep getting bigger, and holsters are just driving us crazy. We sell ’em constantly, but they’re our most returned/exchanged item, too. There are so many options out there! I expect strong sales in all handgun/self-defense categories to continue into next year.” □ laRRY andeRSon, Shoot StRaIght, apopka, Fl: “We were up

across the board in most categories in all six of our stores, and finished with a very strong Christmas season. MSRs and all their widgets and optics remain very strong. The self-defense category will only grow, and people are using our ranges more and more. Buying ammo is a constant challenge; we want to have enough on hand, but not get overextended. We’re learning to deal with it by expanding our dealer base. We’re on a roll that we want to maintain.” □ eRIc gRabowSkI, the ShooteRS Shop, weSt allIS, wI:

“We passed concealed-carry legislation here last spring, so our handgun sales are just awesome, and it’s only going to grow. Our best sellers were the Sig 238, the Ruger LCR, and Glocks. Our biggest challenges have been referring new customers to legitimate C/C training classes. We’re fortunate to have a quality operation just a mile down the road.”

the WaShington Factor

V

irtually every retailer I talked to mentioned the upcoming election as a potential game-changer for the coming retail year. As recent history has proven, the election (or in this case, re-election) of a Democratic president can boost gun and ammo sales. “Even if there’s just a perception that gun owners can’t have what they want, they’re more inclined to buy—that’s just human nature,” says Larry Anderson of Shoot Straight. “It’s going to be an interesting and potentially strange year,” says Glenn Duncan of Duncan’s Outdoor Shop. “People are still worried about the economy and careful about disposable income. An election year will always stir things up.”

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1/12/12 10:19 AM


firing line

b y W ay n e Va n Z W o l l

The New Switcheroo

T/C’s Dimension delivers affordable versatility

Y

ou can pick from 10 chamberings this year—not that you must stick to one. Choose all 10, if you like. T/C’s newest, most innovative rifle gives a shooter a broad choice of barrels he can change at will. The 7075 alloy receiver is really just a shell for the bolt, magazine, and trigger group. The fluted bolt locks directly to a barrel extension. Two guard screws, in alloy sleeves and torqued by a supplied wrench, hold the injection-molded polymer stock to barrel and tang. Bedding? There’s an alloy block up front, a pillar in the rear. To maintain zero during barrel changes, the scope becomes part of the rifle’s barrel unit with an optional cantilever mount. A rear set screw affords added stability through a wedge on the receiver’s bridge.

Okay. It’s different. But what does all that engineering mean? In sum: versatility at a modest cost. Takedown rifles date back a century. Switch-barrel bolt-actions came later, but they’re far dearer. If your customer is keeping Junior in college or feeding him at home until he finds a job, he might well prefer the Dimension at $649. Additional barrels are just $199, with magazine group (box and housing). That’s all the change needed within cartridge families. Of course, you’ll swap more than the barrel when you switch from .223 to .300 Winchester. To give you that sweep of chamberings, T/C designed the Dimension in four lengths. The length here is not the receiver (there’s only one!); it’s the bolt throw. Choose .223-length, short (.308), long (.30/06), and magnum. Bolts to fit different cartridge head diameters cost just $129, complete. There’s no danger of mismatching bolt and barrel. If that happens, the bolt won’t close. The Dimension wears a user-friendly trigger that adjusts from 3 ½ to 5 pounds. The safety is a two-position side-mounted lever. Barrels are chrome-moly with 5-R rifling, 22- and 24-inch, depending on chambering. The stock, with ventilated recoil pad and Armorsoft coating, includes colored spacers to change length. Its wide barrel channel accepts a range of barrel diameters. T/C packages each Dimension with a couple of simple tools. One has a gear wheel that matches up with a knurled ring on the barrel. Use it in tandem with the other tool (which also fits guard and mount screws) to torque the ring. The forward guard screw goes through the receiv-

Sealing the Deal

Sitting vertically in your rack, the T/C Dimension looks much like other black-synthetic-stocked bolt rifles. The important difference is its switch-barrel capability. Show that with a display of several barrels—on ammo boxes to spark interest. A series of targets from different barrels on one receiver should convince accuracy buffs. A scope on the cantilever mount answers many questions—and gives customers a proper look when cheeking this high-combed rifle. Don’t hide the price! It may be the Dimension’s most compelling feature.

Detachable magazine groups, with bolt and barrel, can be changed to accommodate different calibers in T/C’s new switch-barrel Dimension.

er and threads into the barrel itself. With a .308 barrel, I put three 150-grain Hornadys into a quarter-inch knot. To see the effect of switching barrels on group centers, I changed out a .223 barrel three times. Groups fired after each swap stayed in the same place (centers were less than a minute apart). The biggest measured an inch, the smallest not much over half that.

T/C won’t guarantee such repeatability; it does set a 1-minute accuracy standard. Although the Dimension’s futuristic look might nettle curmudgeons who cut their teeth on Griffin & Howe sporters, this rifle promises better accuracy at a fraction of the price of classic rifles—even those without switch-barrel capability. (866-730-1614; tcarms.com)

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undercover shopper

Pistol-Packing Mama! or this assignment, we pulled out all the stops in our search for a store that caters to a new mother’s desire to protect herself and her child. In fact, a new mom and her three-week-old daughter, accompanied by the grandma (me), visited four gun stores in the Charlotte, North Carolina, area searching for a small concealed-carry pistol. I carried the baby in her little detachable car seat and the new mom went undercover as a woman who wanted to find a small pistol for self defense. Store A What was that smell? We tried to figure it out because not only could we smell it inside the shop, but also outside the shop. Turns out, it was the boys in the tire shop next door frying chicken in the back bay. Located on a busy strip in a rundown building, the store also bought gold. The salesperson showed our new mom a Ruger .380 semi-auto, then just quit offering guns for her perusal. She had to take the initiative and ask to see the revolvers. He then showed her a few Smith & Wesson models, including the new Bodyguard with a laser. When she recoiled after the fifth time he covered her with a muzzle,

he said, “Don’t worry. It’s not loaded.” He did inquire as to whether she had training, but did not recommend a course of instruction. She noticed that he only picked up the more expensive revolvers, complete with laser grips. As we walked out the door, the salesman (an admitted grandpa) said, “Do you wanna trade that little boy for a gun?” Uh, no. And, thank you—the baby had a pink blanket tucked in around her.

Store B We went upscale a bit, as the second store was in a much nicer (and safer-looking) shopping area. Again, the customer

in this case received immediate attention at the gun counter and, I should add, so did the baby. My daughter-in-law appreciated that, and we highly recommend that sales associates compliment children who accompany their parents. With several guns in stock at his immediate disposal, the sales associate started by recommending revolvers because of their simplicity in high-pressure situations. She liked the Smith & Wesson Models 637 ($889) and 642 ($549). He asked all the right questions, and then took a wrong turn—launching into a basic pistol course, leaning across the counter and turning my daughter-in-law around by the

shoulders so he could instruct her in how to hold the gun. She felt quite uncomfortable as he encouraged her to take aim at the wall across the store, because it was quite busy in there. Also, he never asked if he could touch her, turn her, or wrap his hands around her hands on a gun. Then, the salesman encouraged my daughter-in-law to take his shooting classes offered nearby and to remember to state that she “feared for her life and the life of her child,” should she be called into question for using deadly force.

Store C Located in a posher neighborhood than the others, in a modern building with clean lines and good lighting, this store’s website touts “exceptional customer service and quality firearms at unbeatable prices.” It also states that the store trains its staff to provide

pixel pushers

F

A young mother looks for a concealed-carry pistol in Charlotte, North Carolina

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undercover shopper

how’d they Do? Customer Service

Product Knowledge

Product Availability

 he acknowledged us fairly quickly and paid attention to requests.

 The sales associate repeatedly pointed the muzzle at the customer. he also did not know where the magazine release was located on a semi-auto that he brought out of the case.

 Very nice lineup from budget to expensive, but we were shown only the more expensive models.

 Very good. Top marks for “promptness.” Most of the time, she had two sales associates attending to her.

 The sales associate was knowledgeable about guns, but overly zealous about steering her to “his” gun training. Also, some of his shooting tips were questionable.

 A lot to choose from, including some versions with pink and purple grips.

 Courteous and respectful. immediately offered to assist and was the most thorough at providing information about concealedcarry courses.

 This sales associate tailored the guns he chose from the case to the shopper’s needs. he also handled the guns safely and answered questions correctly. And, he engaged the customer while doing all of the above.

 Nice selection. Competitive prices. Of stores B and C, all things being equal, my daughter-in-law said she would buy a gun here because of lower prices.

 he backed away from the counter instead of engaging with the customer. he acted like he wanted to go on vacation instead of being on the floor.

 “he just wasn’t into it,” said my daughter-in-law about this sales associate. That made it difficult to ascertain his level of expertise.

 Very nice, large selection of guns. Too bad he didn’t want to sell any of them to this customer.

store

A

store

B

store

C

store

D

SCoring SySteM: Outstanding: 

personalized attention. This turned out to be a case of truth-in-advertising. The sales associate not only showed my daughter-in-law a wide range of revolvers and semi-autos, but he also inquired as to when and where she would take her concealedcarry class. She liked the Smith & Wesson Models 442 ($420) and 638 (also $420). She said later, “He didn’t treat me like a girl that didn’t know anything,

Very Good: 

like the other ones did.” He also handled all the guns safely and never once pointed a muzzle at her. But as a proud grandmother, I wish he had paid a little bit of attention to my granddaughter.

Store D In an effort to leave no stone unturned, we included one big-box store. If body language could talk, it would have

Winner: store

Average: 

screamed that this guy did not want to sell a gun to a lady with a baby and a grandma in tow. He actually stepped back from the counter when she stepped up to it. When she told him, “I’d like to look at your guns for concealed-carry,” his response was, “Really?” Really? Then, he mentioned that he would show her a revolver because, since she was a woman, it should be “easy and simple” to operate. Ooh,

C

This was a very close call between store B and store C. The deciding factor was the lower prices found at store C. Carolina Sporting Arms 8055 south Blvd. Charlotte, NC 28273 704-554-9511 csa.guns

Fair: 

poor: 

bad choice of words. She had to point at guns and ask him to take them out of the case. She asked if he had any other revolvers without hammers, and his response was a disinterested, “Yeah, we got a couple others.” He did not bring them out of the case for her to see. When she led him to the semiautos, he pulled out a Glock and a SIG. She had to ask to hold the guns.

february/march 2012 ❚ Shot BuSineSS ❚ 29

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1/13/12 11:15 AM


Vol. 20

1

2

ING

3

I N TO

4

VIEW

5

6

C OM

OPTICS 2012

02 12

20 200

20 100

20 70

20 50

20 40

20 30

Getting your customers into new glass is easy. Here’s a road map from A to Z to the newest optics with the latest high-tech features. By Robert Sadowski TWO TRENDS THIS YEAR ARE OPTICS FOR CROSSBOWS AND COMPACT RIFLESCOPES WITH SHORT TUBES, SMALL OBJECTIVES, AND ILLUMINATED RETICLES. THE COMPACT SCOPES ARE DESIGNED FOR MSR PLATFORMS, WHICH MAKES THEM IDEAL FOR TAC-

TICAL SCENARIOS, SHORT-RANGE HUNTING, AND 3-GUN COMPETITION. SOME OF THE NEW CROSSBOW MODELS ARE EVEN CALIBRATED TO THE ARROW’S VELOCITY. HERE’S A LOOK AT THESE AND OTHER OPTICS NEW FOR THIS YEAR.

30 ❚ SHOT BUSINESS ❚ FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012

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FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012 ❚ SHOT BUSINESS ❚ 31

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ALPEN Top-of-the-line Apex XP (Xtreme Performance) riflescopes feature multi-coated lenses, fast-focus eyepieces, and generous eye relief. Models with BDC reticles include a 1.5–6x42 (SRP: $499), 3–9x40 (SRP: $499), 4–16x44 (SRP: $499), and 6–24x50. Illuminated-dotreticle models include a 1.5– 6x42 (SRP: $499), 2.5–10x50 (SRP: $499), and 4–16x56 (SRP: $499). The newest models to the Rainier binocular line include Model 75 and 77 HDED (High Definition, Extra Low Dispersion) lens. They feature a magnesium body with a textured coating for a sure, comfortable grip. (909-9878370; alpenoutdoor.com)

BRUNTON Eterna Rifle Scopes are available in three reticle types: BDC, Duplex, or Mil-Dot. The Eterna BDC Reticle uses a bullet drop compensating, glass-etched reticle with a series of aiming points for long-range shooting. Models include a 4.5– 14x50mm (SRP: $965), 3–9x40mm (SRP: $620), and 6.5–20x50mm (SRP: $945). The Eterna Duplex Reticle offers a more traditional reti-

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cle and is available in 1.5– 5x20mm (SRP: $425). The Eterna Mil-Dot Reticle is designed to help shooters calculate and translate the distance and spacing of the reticle to the actual distance to the target. It is available in 6–24x40mm (SRP: $870). Designed for use with pistols, shotguns, rifles, and crossbows, the Eterna Reddot Scope (SRP: $435) features adjustable brightness and a 6 MOA dot for quick target acquisition. It has 1X magnification, a 24mm objective lens, and has ¼-inch-click MOA

adjustments. ICON binoculars use SK Glass paired with SHR nano-coating technology for clarity, contrast, true color, and light transmission. Two models are available: an 8x44 (SRP: $2,375) and an 11x44 (SRP: $2,375). Both feature fast focusing and an interchangeable-eyecup system, and the short-bridge design uses a lightweight magnesium frame. The ICON spotting scope (SRP: $3,900) comes with either a straight or angled eyepiece. They feature SD lenses with super-flat light multi-coatings for clarity and consis-

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tent viewing. Both come with an extendable sun shade, lockable center ring, twist-up eyecups, a gun-sight alignment system, and a carry case. They are tripodadaptable, and the frame is polymer with ergonomic body armor. Weight is 70 ounces. (307-857-4700; bruntonhunting.com)

BSA The Gold Star riflescope line offers 6X magnification zoom, an EZ Hunter reticle, low-profile adjustment turrets, and fully multi-coated lenses with 94 percent light transmission. Four models include a 1–6x20mm (SRP: $249.95), 2–12x44mm (SRP: $269.95), 3–18x44mm SP (SRP: $289.95), and 4–24x50mm SP. The two SP models feature Side Parallax adjustment. The Majestic DX scope line is redesigned with a one-piece tube, fully multi-coated optics, and a ballistic compensating EZ Hunter reticle. Five models include a 3–9x40mm (SRP: $124.95), 3.5–10x44mm (SRP: $169.95), 3.5– 10x50mm (SRP: $179.95), 4–16x44mm SP (SRP: $209.95), and 6–24x44mm SP (SRP: $219.95). SP models feature Side Parallax adjustment. The Majestic Binoculars line is built using a magnesium BAK-4 prism housing system that offers shock resistance and a nitrogen-purging process to ensure fog- and waterproofing. Three models include an 8x42mm (SRP: $109.95), 10x42mm (SRP: $129.95), and 12x42mm (SRP: $139.95). All feature fully multi-coated optics, a BAK-4 prism, a wide-angle eyepiece, lightweight rubber armor housing, twist-out eyecups, and a large centerfocus knob. (954-581-5822; bsaoptics.com)

32 ❚ SHOT BUSINESS ❚ FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012

SHB0212_OPT.indd 32

1/13/12 4:25 PM


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BURRIS The AR-132 (SRP: $279) and AR-536 (SRP: $399) scopes are specifically designed for use on AR rifle platforms. The AR-132 model offers quick target acquisition and close-quarters shooting with 1X magnification and a 4 MOA red dot. The AR-536 model with 5X magnification is for long-range targeting and features the Ballistic/CQ lighted reticle in three colors—black, red, and green—and five different illumination settings to match light conditions. Both feature a Picatinny rail mount. The Fullfield E1 riflescope line has expanded with three models—a 3–9x40mm (SRP: $299) and 4.5–14x42mm (SRP: $449), both with 30mm tubes. The 3–9x40mm is available with an illuminated reticle. The 6.5–20x50mm model with 1-inch tube (SRP: $590) is designed for varmint hunting. The E1MV reticle is calibrated to the .22/250 car-

tridge. All feature a sleek profile, upgraded turrets, an integrated power ring, and eyepieces that accept flip-up lens caps. (970-356-1670;

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burrisoptics.com)

BUSHNELL The Legend Ultra HD (High Definition) line has expanded with scopes, binoculars, and a monocular. Legend Ultra HD riflescopes have nine models. DOA reticle models include a 1.75– 5x32mm DOA 200 (SRP: $249.99) and Crossbow DOA (SRP: $249.99), a 3–9x40mm DOA 600 (SRP: $299.99) and 3–5x50mm DOA 600 (SRP: $299.99). Multi-X reticle models include a 1.75– 5x32mm (SRP: $199.99), 3–9x40mm (SRP: $199.99), and 4.5–14x44mm Multi-X (SRP: $299.99). Also new this year is a mil-dot reticle model, a 4.5–14x44mm Multi-X (SRP: $299.99). The 10x25mm Legend UHD folding compact binocular (SRP: $199.99) fea-

BRUNTON: Top to bottom

Ete na f escope CON spott ng scope Ete na eddot scope and CON b nocu a The ed-dot scope can be used w th p sto s f es and shotguns

FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012 ❚ SHOT BUSINESS ❚ 33

SHB0212_OPT ndd 33

1 13 12 11 50 AM


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tures wide-angle BAK-4 roof prisms for sharpness and detail; the magnesium chassis is wrapped in a non-slip rubber-armored housing. The 10x42mm compact Legend UHD monocular (SRP: $199.99) features ED Prime Glass, which is an extra-low-dispersion glass that aligns colors to deliver resolution, color fidelity, and clarity in low-light conditions. It is waterproof and fogproof. The G-Force 1300 ARC

laser rangefinder (SRP: $399.99) features a turbo processor to deliver range distances up to 1,300 yards with half-yard accuracy, and 1 /10 -yard display precision from 5 to 125 yards. The unit includes Angle Range Compensation (ARC) for uphill/downhill angles and Variable Sight-in Distance (VSI), which allows rifle shooters to set bullet trajectory between 100, 150, 200, and 300 yards. (913-7523400; bushnell.com)

C-MORE SYSTEMS The RTS (SRP: $395) is a small reflex sight with headsup display using an illuminated red dot that is parallax-free. It runs on a CR2032 lithium battery and is waterproof. A three-position switch provides an automatic intensity adjustment, a high brightness setting, and an off position. Available in black or desert tan. (540347-4683; cmore.com)

CARSON OPTICAL The economical VP series binoculars feature fully multi-coated and phase-corrected BAK-4 prisms that are nitrogen-filled and sealed to prevent fogging. Five models are available: 8x32mm (SRP: $210), 8x42mm (SRP: $230), 10x25mm (SRP: $165), 10x42mm (SRP: $240), and 12x50mm (SRP: $270). (631-963-5000; carson optical.com)

50mm objective lens. The scopes feature glass-etched dual-color-illuminated reticles (red for evening, blue for day) as well as the EV (Extreme View) optical system, which delivers a 20 percent wider field of view. (877-429-5347; hawke optics.com)

HI-LUX The Wm. Malcolm 8X USMC-SNIPER scope (SRP: $549) captures the look and functionality of vintage Unertl scopes used by the Marine Corps on sniper rifles during WWII, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War. Legendary shooter Carlos Hathcock employed an original Unertl scope on a Winchester Model 70. The 8X USMC-SNIPER scope features micrometer-click external adjustments combined with modern multicoated lenses. (888-4458912; hi-luxoptics.com)

HAWKE SPORT OPTICS The Panorama riflescope line gets a new 10X ½ mildot with an adjustable objective to go with its 10X ½ mil-dot non-AO models and MAP 6A AO models. In addition, the L4 Dot illuminated reticle will be available in 3–9X and 4–12X with a

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KONUS Designed for use on muzzleloaders, the KonusPro 275 ballistic riflescopes in 3–9x40mm (SRP: $149.99) and 3–10x44mm (SRP: $199.99) employ a reticle calibrated from 75 to 275 yards for popular blackpowder loads with several aiming points, including lateral reference marks to compensate for wind. The 3–10x44mm features a dual-illuminated center dot in blue and red. Both are waterproof, fogproof, and shockproof. Upgraded M30 scopes with mil-dot reticle in 4.5–16x40 (SRP: $549.99), 6.5–25x44 (SRP: $584.99), and 8.5– 32x52 ($624.99) now feature a 1/10 MIL windage and elevation adjustment. (305262-5668; konususa.com)

KOWA OPTIMED The SV binocular series offers six models: 8x32mm,

34 ❚ SHOT BUSINESS ❚ FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012

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10x32mm, 8x42mm, 10x42mm, 10x50mm, and 12x50mm. All feature multicoated lenses and prisms for clear and sharp images. The lightweight design makes the SV easy to carry and hold during extended viewing. Even the large 50mm objective lens models are lightweight, weighing similar to most 42mm-class binoculars. The economical YF series binocular in 6x30mm and 8x30mm features multicoated lenses and prisms in a lightweight rubber-armored body. They are waterproof and nitrogen-filled to prevent fogging. (800-9665692; kowa-usa.com)

LEUPOLD & STEVENS The VX-R Patrol riflescope is available in a 1.25– 4x20mm (SRP: $579.99) with the FireDot Special Purpose Reticle and a 3–9x40mm (SRP: $599.99) with the

FireDot Tactical Milling Reticle (TMR). Designed for tactical shooters, the VX-R offers fast target acquisition in bright and low light. One button illuminates the dot within the reticle, which has eight intensity settings. The Motion Sensor Technology (MST) puts the reticle in standby mode after five minutes of inactivity, but reactivates at the same intensity setting whenever the rifle is moved. The VX-R features a 30mm tube, second generation argon/krypton waterproofing and defogging, and runs on one CR-2032 battery. The classic and affordable golden ring VX-1 line (SRP: $210–$320) offers scopes suitable for rifles, muzzleloaders, rimfire rifles, and crossbows. The 1–4x20mm is designed for close-range hunting and features specialized reticles: Heavy Duplex for dangerous game and

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deer, Turkey Plex for turkey hunters, and Pig Plex for hogs. The 2–7x33mm is available in several configurations, including five duplex reticle variations designed to specific needs such as longrange hunting or turkey hunting. The 4–12x40mm is designed to provide the proper magnification and field of view at medium to long ranges for hunting deer, antelope, elk, and varmints. Three reticles are available: Duplex, Wide Duplex, and Long Range Duplex. The rimfire version of the 2–7x28mm Ultralight is parallax-adjusted at 60 yards to match the modern rimfire rifle and uses a Fine Duplex reticle for easier aiming at smaller targets. The crossbow-ready Crossbones 2–7x33mm scope provides crossbow hunters with a power-selector ring calibrated in velocity rather than magnification, which allows the shooter to adjust to arrow velocity and calibrate the reticle for the projectile

at the same time. Help squeeze all the potential out of a blackpowder hunting customer’s modern muzzleloader with the 2–7x33mm UltimateSlam that uses the SA.B.R. (SAbot Ballistics Reticle) system to help deliver pinpoint accuracy at long range. The next generation of the VX-2 line (SRP: $300– $600) offers Leupold’s indexmatched lens system for brightness, clarity, contrast, and resolution. The line also features a redesigned tube, tactile power indicator, an easy-to-read-numbers power selector, and finger-adjustable windage and elevation adjustments. Rifle models include a 1–4x20mm, 2–7x33mm, the classic 3–9x40mm, and the 4–12x40mm, which specifically provides a wide field of view on low power suitable for open-country big-game hunting or as an all-around optic on a multi-use rifle. Large, light-sucking 50mm objective lenses are built into the 3–9x50mm and 4–12x50mm. The 4–12x40mm AO has an adjustable objective and is designed for medium game and varmints. It is suited for calibers such as .243, 25/06, and various 6.5s. The 6–18x40mm AO is specifically designed for long-range varmint hunting. VX-2 lightweight scopes feature an Ultralight 2–7x28mm, Ultralight 3–9x33mm, and Ultralight EFR 3–9x33mm. Rimfire shooters may take interest in the 3–9x33mm Rimfire EFR designed for .17 HMR and .22 WMR rifles. The CDS reticle model can be calibrated specifically to these cartridges’ trajectory. (503-526-1400; leupold.com)

MEOPTA USA The patent-pending and

36 ❚ SHOT BUSINESS ❚ FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012

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Apple-approved MeoPix iScoping adapter attaches securely to the iPhone and allows the iPhone 4 to interface with any binocular or spotting scope eyepiece, turning the smartphone into the ultimate long-range photo- and movie-capturing tool. Its proprietary technology guarantees a secure fit, precise alignment, and incredible image quality. Hunters and guides should like the new platform, as it allows them, when paired with premium spotting scopes and binoculars, to send an image (still or movie) to a family member or client almost immediately. It also lets them carry one less piece of gear (a bulky cameras) and still be able to create a spellbinding record of their hunt. SRP: $69.99. (631-436-5900; meopta sportsoptics.com)

NIGHTFORCE OPTICS Nightforce is adding the MOAR reticle to its rifle-

scope line. The MOAR features one-MOA increments for both elevation and windage with thicker line subtensions. MOA elevation indicators are numbered for fast and easy adjustments. The MOAR will be available in 2.5–10x32mm NXS Compact models, 5.5–22x32mm, 3.5– 15x32mm, and 8–32x32mm NXS models. (208-4769814; nightforceoptics.com)

NIKON The Monarch 3 binocular series in 8x42mm (SRP: $229.95) and 10x42mm (SRP: $249.95) offers bright, high-resolution images. It also offers long eye relief and a lightweight and rugged body. (800-248-6846; nikonsportoptics.com)

NIKKO-STIRLING The Targetmaster riflescope series was designed with tactical and competitive target shooters in mind. Features include an aluminum 30mm tube, lenses coated with Microlux ETE for maximum

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light transmission, easy set turrets, and side parallax adjustments. Models include a 4–16x44mm (SRP: $374), 5–20x50mm (SRP: $397), 6–24x56mm (SRP: $436), and 10–50x60mm (SRP: $514). A mil-dot reticle is standard. (775-575-6186; legacysports.com)

SIGHTMARK The Triple Duty 1–6x24 (SRP: $275) riflescope is designed for close-range tactical shooting, mediumrange large-game hunting, or 3-Gun competition. It features an illuminated red or green reticle, 1X magnification, and ½-inch MOA

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adjustments. Three reticles are available: Circle Dot, Circle Dot Duplex based on the World War II German Sniper Rifle, and a Duplex.

and offers five brightness levels. Models include a 8x42 and 10x42. (800-426-3089;

(877-431-3579; sightmark. com)

TRIJICON

STEINER The Merlin Pro line of lightweight, compact binoculars is improved with high-contrast optical coatings for brightness and color fidelity, twist-up eyepieces with contoured eyecups, and Nitrile Butadiene Rubber (NBR) armoring to withstand rough weather and handling. Four models are available: 8x42 (SRP: $499), 10x32 (SRP: $499), 10x42 (SRP: $599), and 10x50 (SRP: $699). All come with a padded case, removable neoprene rainguards, and a padded neck strap. (970-3561670; steiner-binoculars.com)

SWAROVSKI The EL Range line of binoculars is integrated with a SWARO-AIM rangefinder. Designed on the EL binocular body, the EL Range is lightweight and ergonomic. The SWARO-AIM technology features an integrated gradometer to show the precise shooting distance and angle. The LCD readout ranges in yards or meters

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The SRS (Sealed Reflex Sight) is a compact reflextype sight with a body length of 3.75 inches, resulting in an unobstructed field of view. It is adaptable to many firearms platforms, including MSRs and shotguns. The LED-lighted 1.75 MOA aiming point includes 10 brightness settings and it is powered by a solar panel and one AA battery. It is also waterproof. (248-960-7700; trijicon.com)

VANGUARD USA The Endeavor Series consists of four spotting scopes (two with a straight eyepiece and two with an angled eyepiece), each of which features BAK-4 prisms and fully multi-coated lenses. The scopes are waterproof and fogproof, and their durableyet-lightweight magnesium construction is rubberarmored for shock resistance. A dual focus wheel system enables fast and finetuning focus adjustment. Also included is a rain coat and soft carrying bag. SRP: 16–48x65mm, $619; 20–60x85mm, $749. Also new is the waterproof and fogproof Spirit XF binocular, which utilizes an open-bridge body design to keep it lightweight and compact. It boasts textured rubber armor for a secure grip and shock resistance as well as BAK-4 prisms and fully multi-coated lenses that help it deliver edge-to-edge clarity and high-contrast images. Two models will be available: an 8x42 (SRP: $249) and 10x42 (SRP: $249). (800-875-3322; vanguardworld.com)

38 ❚ SHOT BUSINESS ❚ FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012

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VORTEX The Ranger 1000 laser rangefinder is capable of ranging targets to 1,000 yards. Display modes include an angle-compensated distance-reading mode, a scan mode that ranges a moving animal, and an advanced mode that offers an option for shooters who want to calculate long-distance/high-angle shots. It is waterproof and runs on one CR2 battery. (800-4260048; vortexoptics.com)

WEAVER The 1/10 Mil Tactical scope models in 4–20x50 (SRP: $1,247.95) and 3–15x50 (SRP: $1,117.95) were purpose-built for 3-Gun competition or defense. They feature 1/10 mil windage and elevation adjustments, 5X magnification, mil-dot reticles in the first focal plane, and side-focus parallax adjustment. The exposed turrets easily reset to zero. The economical KASPA series features hunting and tactical scopes, binoculars, and a rangefinder. The riflescopes are one-piece construction, nitrogen-purged to eliminate fogging, and have ¼-inch MOA adjustments. The Dual-X reticle models include a 2–7x32mm (SRP: $120.95), 1x20mm (SRP: $127.49), 3–9x40mm ($144.49), 3–12x50mm (SRP: $185.49), and 4–16x44mm ($228.95). Ballistic reticle models include a 3–9x40mm (SRP: $144.49), 3–12x50mm (SRP: $185.49), and 4–16x44mm ($228.95). The KASPA Extreme Tactical scopes have the same features as the riflescopes plus external turrets, illuminated reticles, and flipup lens caps. The 1.5– 6x32mm (SRP: $282.95) and 3–12x44mm (SRP: $324.95) models also have side focus

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•• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• ••ZEISS: •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• ••The •• •• •• ••Conquest •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• HD •• •• 8x42 binocular delivers sharp••• images • • • • • • • • •• •• •• matter ••••••••••••••• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• •••no •• •• •• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• what time of day or how foul the weather. The Conquest Duralyt riflescope •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• ••line •• •• •• ••offers •• •• •• •• •• •• ••value •• •• •• •• •• and •• •• •• •• ••performance. •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• ••(top), ••••••••••••••••• The line includes a 2–8x42mm •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• 3–12x50mm (left), and a 2–8x42mm (right). All feature 30mm tubes. •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• ••••••••••••••••••••••••••• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• •• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• •••

and feature an Illuminated Tactical Ballistic-X reticle. Illuminated Mil Dot reticle models are on the 2.5– 10x44mm (SRP: $314.95) and 2.5–10x50mm (SRP: $319.99). The KASPA binoculars are an open-hinge design and come in two models: 8x42mm (SRP: $118.49) and 10x50mm (SRP: $130.95). The KASPA 8x28mm 1,000-Yard Laser Rangefinder (SRP: $375.49) features 8X power and horizontal design for extended viewing. The Buck Commander 8x28mm 1,000-Yard Laser Rangefinder (SRP: $375.49) ranges deer-sized animals out to 600 yards and reflective targets to 1,000 yards. It operates on one CR2 battery, is waterproof, ranges moving targets in scan

mode, and measures distance in feet, yards, and meters. The aluminum-constructed Scope Mounted Picatinny Rail Adaptor (SRP: $58.99) in 1 inch or 30mm allows shooters to mount a mini red dot, flashlight, or laser directly on the scope. Bases (SRP: $8.49–$15.49) are now available for the Mossberg 935 Magnum, Savage’s Axis rifle, and H&R’s Partner pump shotgun. (608-8360922; weaveroptics.com)

ZEISS The Conquest Duralyt Riflescope line offers value and performance with 30mm tubes and are either an illuminated No. 60 or non-illuminated No. 6 reticle. Models include a 1.2– 5x36mm (SRP: $1,055.54/ No. 6 reticle; $1,388.88/No.

60 illuminated), 2–8x42mm (SRP: $1,111.10/No. 6 reticle, $1,444.43/No. 60 illuminated), and 3–12x50mm (SRP: $1,166.66/No. 6 reticle, $1,499.99/No. 60 illuminated). The finish is a dark gray, anodized surface with black rubber operating controls. The Conquest HD 8x42mm (SRP: $1,055.54) and 10x42mm (SRP: $1,111.10) binoculars with an HD lens system provides value and performance in a compact, lightweight, and ergonomic design. Lens coatings provide 90 percent light transmission with a sharp image at any time of day and in any weather. The ergonomically designed grip area and large focus wheel are designed for prolonged glassing. (800-441-3005; zeiss.com)

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photos by the author

The author’s leopard was taken with a quick shot at 11 steps with a .375 Montana Summit Alaskan.

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The .375 Mystique This briTish magnum, which FirsT saw The lighT oF day 100 years ago, remains a surprisingly versaTile carTridge In 1912, the English gun-making firm of Holland and Holland announced the .375 Belted Rimless Nitro Express. Western Cartridge Company loaded it as the .375 H&H Magnum beginning in 1925, when the hull was necked down to form, in the .300 H&H Magnum. By Wayne van Zwoll addition, New York’s prestigious gun-builder Griffin & Howe earned many shekels barreling Magnum Mausers to .375. In 1937, the round shouldered its way into the charter list of chamberings for Winchester’s new Model 70. In that day, it was considered an immensely powerful cartridge, with far more horsepower than hunters needed stateside. Beginning in the 1940s, however, Roy Weatherby began making “magnum” a household word. He took an occasional order for a .375 H&H rifle as he hawked his own .375, a blown-out version of the cartridge. Remington briefly offered the .375 H&H in its 725 Kodiak. Fewer than 60 were built, all during the last year of 725 production. But the Model 700 that replaced it took up the .375. Left: Kimber’s elegant Caprivi, which features a Model 70-style controlled-feed action, delivers sub-minute groups. Right: The original .375 (left) and Hornady’s .375 Ruger, a modern variant. february/march 2012 ❚ Shot BuSineSS ❚ 41

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Remington’s Model 700 XCR II in .375 H&H may not look like a traditional “African” rifle, but don’t let its looks fool you. It features a 24-inch barrel, and the stainless-steel receiver and barrel are coated with a matte black TriNyte corrosioncontrol system for improved scratch- and corrosion-resistance.

Because its hull measures 2.85 inches and factory-loaded cartridges 3.60, the .375 requires a long bolt and magazine. Steep case taper with a shoulder angle shy of 13 degrees are said to have prompted the belt to ensure positive headspacing. Holland & Holland introduced a flanged (rimmed) version of the .375 for double rifles. This option has faded, as belted hulls work fine in hingedbreech mechanisms. Long in the tooth, the .375 has hardly lost its appeal. That’s mainly because it is still a truly useful cartridge—more useful, in fact, than ever. Modern powders and bullets have added muscle and versatility. With some exceptions, African countries have declared .375 as the minimum legal bore diameter for the hunting of dangerous game. There are other .375s, but the Holland & Holland is the most common and most revered, and the ammo is sold just about every place you’ll find The .375 works best with easy-to-load top-feeding rifles (here, a Sako). Ruger Number 1 comes in .375 H&H and .375 Ruger. Blaser’s R93 boasts straight-pull bolts. 42 ❚ Shot BuSineSS ❚ february/march 2012

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SELLING THE MYSTIQUE the .375 h&h Magnum has been chambered in the loveliest rifles, custom-built and from iconic commercial firms. Because best-quality doubles cost as much as hollywood weddings and bongo hunts, most of the .375s in gun shops are bolt-actions. it’s no trick persuading hunters to pick up a .375 that looks as if it belongs on safari. especially if it wears iron sights and a barrel-band swivel stud. As shoppers can imagine themselves astride a galloping horse when they flick the lever of a Winchester carbine, so they become “Pondoro” when they hoist a .375 with a quarter-rib. tugging customers from the dream onto a 4473 is easier if you pave the path. Maintain that link to history, with ammunition and accoutrements that

animals big enough to test it. Most load development of late has targeted dangerous game, with 300-grain softpoints and solids. Norma loads a 350-grain Woodleigh, which I used once to clobber an elephant. Centering the skull at 16 yards, the bullet drove nearly the full length of the beast, lodging in a hip. Several tons of elephant hit the ground instantly and did not twitch. The lightest bullet in original loadings, a 235-grain softnose at 2,800 fps, is long dead, replaced by more efficient spitzers of 270 grains or so. Nosler’s 260-grain AccuBond flies as flat as a 150-grain TSX bullet from a .308 and delivers more punch at 200 yards than most 7mm Magnum loads muster at the muzzle. Despite a proliferation of potent .30 and .33 magnums, midweight softpoints in the .375 H&H have much to recommend them. They excel for Alaskan brown bears, which must sometimes be stopped, not just killed. In Africa, carrying solids in one pocket and softs in another is easier than toting two rifles. With a .375, you can reach far to anchor plains game or halt at spitwad range the hostilities of creatures with feet the size of manhole covers.

sHArp stInG, Gentle pUsH A mighty blow to the target often means clavicle-cracking recoil. It’s that way with my 7½-pound .458. Even heavy rifles can’t easily rein in the violence of a .505 Gibbs. But the .375 is a civil round, not unpleasant in rifles as light as 8 pounds. Shooters of modest experience and slight build need not fear. In fact, the .375 can seem gentler than lesser cartridges. Stiff loads in the .338 Winchester and heavy-bullet recipes in the .300 Weatherby hammer you harder—at least, it feels that way to me. The claim that a .375 administers a push, not a kick, may be an overstatement, but this is surely the best dangerous-game round for the recoil-shy. Unlike its big-bore brethren, a .375 that’s comfortable to carry can also be comfortable to shoot. Part of the .375’s enduring popularity has to do with the people who have used it. John “Pondoro” Taylor praised it in his 1948 book, African Rifles and Cartridges. Describing a buffalo hunt, he wrote, “I gave him the left barrel fairly in the center of his great chest… [the effect being] as though there had been a steel hawser stretched across his path just the right height above the

match the .375’s mystique. You needn’t sell lots of norma African Ph ammunition to stock a few boxes. they’re expensive, but the packaging is a fitting tribute to the cartridge’s rich past. hornady and other companies also package ammo to emphasize the African connection. Leather cartridge belts and pouches, and clothing suitable for sundowners by the mopani fire, also work their magic. the .375 and its rifles are special largely because they evoke another time, distant places, and men of legendary hunting prowess. ignore that, and you might as well stick to MSRs. Lastly, invoke the recoil card: “You can fire this elephant gun without splitting your lip or losing your third molar.”

ground to whip the forelegs from under him. He crashed on his nose…dead.” Jack O’Connor called the .375 H&H the queen of the medium-bores, “and probably the best all-around cartridge ever designed.” He noted that a .375 zeroed with 270-grain bullets to strike 3 inches high at 100 yards will plant those bullets “on the nose at or around 225.” O’Connor wrote that were he to hunt all over the world with only one rifle, it would be a .375. He used the round for brown bears, lions, and “one very large tiger.” By many accounts, this cartridge kills more effectively than the numbers indicate. It has certainly served me well. An early Winchester 70 with a split wrist and a Redfield receiver sight dropped my best bushbuck at some distance, through a tiny shot alley. It rolled my best warthog from 175 yards off. It killed my first buffalo as well, at slingshot range in heavy cover. I’ve since taken up with a Montana 1999 rifle, a Summit Alaskan in .375. Scoped with a low-power Leupold, it has claimed buffalo and assorted other heavies, including an eland at 200 yards that collected two Federal Trophy Bonded bullets half an inch apart. This Montana, an

uncommonly agile rifle, killed a leopard at 11 yards in tall grass as I raced to the alarm yell from my tracker. It tumbled my last buffalo like a shot hare as the fatally hit bull raced past me in gathering dusk. It is a go-to rifle, utterly reliable and uncanny in the way it sends bullets where I look.

rIFles, dIstIlled You can lump bolt-action .375s into three price categories. I call them cheap, costly, and divorce. Actually, there are no cheap rifles chambered in .375 H&H. The most affordable are still good rifles, and they still will set your customers back about a grand. These include the stainless, synthetic-stocked Remington Model 700 XRC II, with iron sights and an adjustable X-Mark Pro trigger. Its TriNyte metal corrosion shield is a bonus. Browning’s A-Bolt Medallion and Stainless Stalker come in .375 (the latter also with left-hand action), as does the X-Bolt Stainless Stalker. Priced from $990 to $1,240, they’re the lightest commercial .375s I’ve found; the X-Bolt scales just 6¾ pounds. On the heavy end, CZ lists a 9¼-pound .375 Safari Magnum at $1,179, with Kevlar-synthetic and laminate versions at $1,660 and

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$1,391, a left-hand model at $1,799. Not long ago, on my range, a CZ shot the smallest groups of four .375s. Thank the hammer-forged barrel—and the 2¾-pound trigger. Setting it with a nudge forward reduced the break to just 1 pound. Winchester’s Model 70, with its long receiver, Mauser extractor, and mechanical ejector, is still a natural for the .375. The new Safari Express has handsome, classic lines. It lists for $1,350. Ruger and Hornady have given the .375 H&H some competition with the shorter, rimless .375 Ruger cartridge. The trim Model 77 Hawkeye African (walnut stock) and burly Alaskan (in overmolded polymer) are bored for Ruger’s .375. Both list at $1,095. The 9¼-pound, Farquharson-based Ruger No. 1 dropping-block Tropical Rifle comes in .375 H&H for $1,242. Or pick the 7½-pound Medium Sporter in .375 Ruger. Same price. A couple of Weatherby Mark Vs chamber Holland’s .375: the Fibermark ($1,469) and Synthetic ($1,305). Not long ago you could find a flock of .375s in the $2,000– $3,500 range. Not so now. They’ve been hijacked by the next category up. But Kimber’s synthetic-stocked Talkeetna, at $2,108, still qualifies. One of my favorite .375s is the Sako 85 Kodiak, retailing for $1,975. Its profile combines an easy flow of line with subtle brawn. It is a gym rat in a tailored suit. Its 8-pound heft seems to me ideal for a .375, and Sako got the balance perfect. The 21-inch barrel wears a barrel band swivel stud ahead of the laminated gray stock. The shallow V-notch rear sight is windage-adjustable, the sightline just high enough to match that of a low-mounted scope. A hooded front bead—big, white, and concave—won’t reflect light off-center, but it’s quickly visible even to tired eyes. Sako’s 85 action has a three-

lug bolt, a short but stout extractor, and a mechanical ejector. A forward magazine release drops the box into your hand. But the magazine must be pressed upward to release the tab, preventing accidental magazine drops. The magazine fits flush. Still, it holds four .375 cartridges, and it can be loaded in the rifle. The trigger on my 85 breaks at a crisp 3 pounds, an aid to field accuracy. One series of Federalloaded 260-grain AccuBonds from the bench left a single hole. A close look showed that all three bullets had threaded it. No, I cannot shoot that well.

scratch, sells a safari-style rifle called the PHR. It costs $3,045 and incorporates a mercury recoil reducer. For an extra $200, you can get a left-hand bolt.

For deep pockets only Divorce-level pricing puts you into lovely hardware indeed. You get not only figured French, but features like integral quarter ribs, flip-up front sights, and those mercury kick-tamers. Dakota’s 76 ranks among my favorites. It’s essentially a Winchester M70 with refinements, fit, and finish New

The .375 H&H continues to be a very versatile cartridge. The author took this gemsbok with a Blaser R93.

Evidently the Sako Kodiak can. Toward the upper end of middle pricing, you’ll find Kimber’s Caprivi, in fetching French walnut for $3,196. An upgraded version with fancier wood and a case-colored receiver costs more. The Caprivi’s slight tilt to the muzzle helps tame recoil, and there’s plenty of checkered wood up front to grasp. This rifle has controlledround feed and an excellent trigger. It shoots under an inch for me. Similar in many ways is the Model 97 Dakota Deluxe Hunter. This round-action bolt rifle is uncommonly svelte. At $3,295, it’s entry-level by company standards. All-Weather and Outfitter Take-Down versions cost $3,595 and $4,595, respectively. H-S Precision, known for super-accurate rifles built from

Haven could never afford. The Safari lists for $7,195, the African for $800 more. Both come in takedown (Traveler) versions, for $8,395 and $9,495. I’ve used the Traveler and am impressed by its strong, simple design as well as its reliable return to zero. Dakota also lists two single shots in .375. The Model 10 is the very definition of sleek. ($4,695). Miller’s exquisite dropping-block costs about $300 more. A Miller in .375 once gave me a ¾-inch group with open sights. That’s as much a tribute to Lady Luck as to rifle or load. One group is surely no proof of keen vision. Still, good rifles have a way of making mediocre marksmen look better. A rifle I’ve come to like a great deal is the Blaser R8, progeny of the R93 (named for

the years of introduction). These German engineering marvels, from about $3,500, have telescoping straight-pull bolts that trim overall length by a couple of inches. The virtually weightless, compact magazine assemblies are cleverly nested with the trigger groups. (R8 innards can be removed as a unit without tools.) A Blaser bolt head locks with a collet engaging a circumferential groove in the barrel shank. The bolt-barrel union can endure a thrust of 120,000 psi. Blaser’s R93 and R8 cycle very fast. You run the bolt with a flick of your hand. A thumbpiece cocks the mechanism. Shove it up and forward, and you’re ready to fire. To de-cock, push ahead and let it return. The R93 and R8 are the only bolt rifles you can carry safely at the ready. They’re not cocked until you’re set to fire. Plasma nitriding hikes the surface hardness of Blaser’s hammer-forged, interchangeable barrels (in myriad chamberings, from .223 to .500 Jeffery). Straddle-style scope rings fit so precisely, you can remove and replace a scope without losing zero. As for stocks, choose from several grades of Turkish walnut. Or go for durability, with polymer. Some costly .375s wear only synthetic stocks—the $5,200 Pro Hunter from Brown Precision, for instance. It’s on a Remington 700 action. The Pro Hunter Elite, with a Winchester Model 70 core, lists for $6,800. McMillan builds its superb Prestige rifle to order as well, for $6,325. If your customers are of a traditional bent, the Johannsen Express Rifle is sure to seduce. Built around a double-square bridge magnum Mauser action, it features a three-detent sideswing safety, a two-leaf folding express sight in the rear, and a 4mm hinged bead paired with a fixed 2mm silver bead up front. The walnut is conservatively sculpted and oil-finished. The $11,600 tag is just for starters.

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! W NE HEVI•Shot®’s HEVI•METAL® gives you

knockdown power you just can’t get with “straight steel”! Steel shot is steel shot, no matter what you do to it Steel shot became the shot of choice because it’s non-toxic and relatively inexpensive. Not because it performs. Shotshell makers continue to try to make steel work. But, no matter what you do to steel, no matter how fast it travels, it still lacks mass and that means compromised KNOCKDOWN POWER, especially at long range.

Call ’em in close and hammer ’em with new HEVI•METAL® Turkey from HEVI•Shot®! HEVI•METAL® Turkey is a layered load that combines premium steel shot with HEVI•Shot® pellets. The combination is deadly for called-in toms! Just like it’s waterfowl counterpart, HEVI•METAL® Turkey is the result of timeless testing of various shot load methods which found layering to provide the most pellets on target and the best knockdown performance. And that’s exactly what you need for a big old longbeard!

Combining HEVI•Shot® with steel dramatically increases KNOCKDOWN POWER

HEVI•Shot® is the ultimate high performance shot substrate. But, for the waterfowler, who typically goes through a lot of shells, it can be expensive. So, we’ve developed a layered load that combines premium steel and HEVI•Shot®. This layered load, which we call HEVI-METAL®, dramatically outperforms straight steel. For just a few more bucks, you’ll kill a lot more ducks with HEVI•METAL®!

Shot is layered, not mixed, for ultimate performance

We tested countless methods of loading HEVI•METAL® and, for the ultimate performance, found that layering HEVI•Shot® pellets over premium steel offered maximum knockdown performance and the absolute most lethal pellets on target. And, the shells are custom loaded on proprietary equipment to assure unmatched consistency, shell after shell!

HEVI•METAL® Turkey is available in both 12 and 20 gauge shells. GAUGE 12 12 20

INCHES 3 1/2 3 3

OZ. SHOT 1 1/2 1 1/4 1

SHOT SIZE 4 4 4

FPS 1450 1450 1250

P.O. Box 779 / 1307 Clark Mill Road Sweet Home, Oregon 97386 541-367-3522

w w w.h e v ish ot.com

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W H AT ’ S S E L L I N G W H E R E

West

County CALake Gun, Lakeport

About 100 miles north of San Francisco, this small-town California shop stays busy with 220 firearms stocked into less than 900 square feet of floor space. Modern sporting rifles are especially hot this winter; sales have tripled in little more than a year. “We have always had the demand for MSRs, but there were few models that were California-compliant. Since that’s changed, sales are way, way up,” said owner Cliff Rakic. Most MSR sales are split between Smith M&Ps, DPMSs, and Franklin Armory’s V series. All things .22 are moving briskly. Ruger 10-22s, Savage Model 64 BTVs, and Marlin XT-22ROs are all posting excellent numbers. At the

handgun counter, Glock 19s, M&P P9s, and Smith Bodyguard .380s are seeing the most attention.

Nevada NV Western Firearms, Stateline

Specializing in original Colt firearms, this Lake Tahoe–area dealer keeps an average of 250 guns in stock. “We inventory both new and vintage Colt single-action revolvers. When the economy hit the skids three years ago, we moved to stocking more home-defense guns, and it’s been a good move. Our average invoice is still above $1,000,” said owner Scott Myer. In addition to single-action handguns, Colt 1911 Anniversary Models are doing better than expected. Kimber 1911s are just behind, and Smith M&P 45s are also seeing turns.

Midwest Gun & MIBob’s Tackle, Hastings

Bob’s sports 15,000 square feet of floor space, with an average of 30 employees and more than 2,000 firearms in stock. Predator hunting is nearing its peak; as a result, Marlin X7s in .22/250, Smith M&Ps in .223, and Remington R-15 VTRs in .30 Rem. AR are selling well. Handguns continue to have steady sales. “We’re starting to plan for election season. Our reps are predicting shortages and high demand for MSRs and pistols by fall,” said buyer-manager Steve Hayes. At the handgun counter, Ruger LCPs and LCRs are topping the list, with strong numbers on Smith Bodyguards and Model 642 revolvers. On the accessories side, Redfield Rebel Series binoculars have been selling well.

& Feather, IAFin Iowa City

This general hunting and fishing shop keeps 300 guns in stock with three employees working the hunting department. After Christmas, the hottest seller has been anything in .22 caliber. “Rimfire gear has just gone crazy this year, with exceptional demand on .22 pistols and rifles. Our customers see it as a new, fun, and cheap way to play,” said manager Clint Hartsock. As for .22s, Sig Mosquitos and tactical .22s from M&P are moving well. Due to the mild January weather, predator hunting is down. Customers have been very pricesensitive about MSR purchases; the Smith M&P Sporter has garnered the most attention. Handgun sales are steady, with the best turns coming from Sig 9238s and Smith M&P 9s.

Several Uberti 1860 Henry Rifles also are selling this month. On the used side, Myer is seeing high demand for 12- and 20-gauge Winchester 101 over/unders.

Smallest IDWorld’s Pawn, Fruitland

Selling a mix of saddles, jewelry, and musical instruments, this pawn shop manages more than 400 guns in stock and boasts to be “the friendliest pawn shop in Idaho.” Handguns continue to move quickly, with Ruger SR9s and LC9s at the top of the list. Taurus Judges and Model 257s in .40 bring up the rear. Sales of MSRs have slowed to about one a month, with Stag Arms seeing the majority of traffic. Savage Model 12FV in .22/250 have sold well since January, even with the mild winter weather.

Hawks, INLittle Warsaw

Located between Fort Wayne and South Bend, this retailer is a general shooting supply store, with 350 guns in inventory and two full-time employees. Handguns continue to swell in sales, with strong numbers on Ruger LCRs and LCPs. Smith Bodyguards are a strong second. “Our handgun business is still growing even in a difficult economy, and we haven’t even started with election season,” said manager Dave Shirley. A few Remington Model 700 Varmint series are still selling from predator season, and the store is doing steady numbers on Rock Rivers and DPMS in .223. Due to a recent change in the deer regulations, the store did large numbers of H&R single-shot .44 Magnums, and they continue to move.

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B Y P E T E R B . M AT H I E S E N

East

Bullseye RI Shooting Supplies, Woonsocket

Located just south of the Massachusetts line, this retailer specializes in ammo, handloading, and handguns. New shipments of Mosin-Nagent Russian surplus rifles are flying out the door with a retail price below $140. “We really try to keep something in stock that any customer can buy. The goal is to keep them coming by to see what we have specials on. It creates a lot of traffic and ancillary sales,” said owner Paul Conley. Handgun sales are steady. Big sellers are Glock 19s, Smith M&P 22s, and Taurus Model 605s in .357 Mag. Reloading supply sales for handgun shooters continue to rise. However, Conley expects to see higher ammo prices in response to coming presidential election.

South

Fair LTD, TNGame Nashville

With more than 250 fine guns in stock, this metro store caters primarily to used hunting and collectible gun owners. “We have no trouble selling high-grade double guns in good condition. Our problem is that it’s been difficult to find them. With the market down, many owners are holding tight to fine guns,” said owner John Allen. For shotguns, the market for Belgium Brownings is as hot as ever. Other high-demand items include American-made, British, and Italian guns in 20- and 28-gauge. Caesar Guerini Summits and Beretta Silver Hawks have been the most popular 12-gauges sold this winter. Pre-’64 Winchester rifles continue to see increased demand, while new and original Army Colts ranging in price from $1,200 to $9,400 have

Casco’s Gun-ANJ Rama, Jersey City

The Village NH Gun Store, Whitefield

moved exceptionally well. Allen said that he expects the retail price of heavily used 12-gauge field-grade doubles to continue to decline.

Ruger LCRs and LCPs are in the top spot, with Smith Bodyguards just behind. Hog guns are starting to cross the counter. Popular choices here are .30/30 Henrys and Marlins.

Located across the Hudson River in the shadow of lower Manhattan, this retailer has been in business for more than 42 years, selling handguns, rifles, and shotguns. The family-run store always has fresh, hot coffee on hand. Handguns are hotter than they were at Christmas. Sig 226s, Springfield XDMs, and Smith Bodyguards are selling well. “Our sales remain consistent because we make every effort to know our customers’ names and show a sincere interest in their shooting habits,” said owner Frank Casco. Bushmasters in .223 are selling moderately well, along with some Remington 770 package guns in .243. Shotguns are starting to pick up, with a few Stoeger 3500s and Benelli M4 guns seeing turns.

King’s River AR New and Used Guns, Berryville

This rural gun dealer packs 400 firearms into a building that measures just 16 by 20 feet. Specializing in home defense and hunting guns, late winter sales are steady for this retailer. However, hunting shotguns are slow. “I’m not sure why, but we can barely sell a classic hunting shotgun,” said owner Charles Hambay. Shotgun sales may be off, but .22 calibers have been moving fast. Savage BTCSs in .22/250 and Henry Golden Boys in .22 hold the top spots. Several Ruger 10-22s have continued to sell since Christmas. Handgun sales are brisk, and

This small-town gun shop keeps three staff members busy with 2,000 square feet of retail space and 700 guns on the floor. The shop has seen a surge in handgun sales that started during the October hunting season. “Our handgun sales continue to rise and are well above last year. The increase has come from many first-time lady shooters,” said owner Stan Holz. All things .38 and .380 have held the leading sales position, and Ruger LCPs and Smith Bodyguards are at the top of the list. Youth guns are especially strong, ranging from Mossberg 500 youth models, Thompson/Center Hot Shots, and Rossi Trifecta 20-gauge in .243 and .22 combos. MSR sales are steady, with most turns going to DPMS and Olympic Arms.

Monty’s TX Shooters Supply, Graham

This smalltown retailer specializes in reloading supplies and gun parts. With deer season over and local rifle competitions starting up, the store’s customers have turned to reloading supplies. “Our inventory of bullets, primers, and brass is the best it has been in a long time. Although availability is good, prices are almost as high as last year,” said owner Monty Seymour. Target rifles from Anschutz in Model 64 BRs and 1517 BRs are selling, with a few Steyr LG 110 High Power 5.0s crossing the counter. FEBRUARY/MARCH 2012 ❚ SHOT BUSINESS ❚ 47

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Good stuff

b y S l at o n l . W h i t e

Up to the Challenge Tough terrain requires a tough boot

F

or the past few years hunting boots have been on a serious diet, shedding pounds faster than some of the contestants on The Biggest Loser. That’s because many of these boots are modeled on athletic shoes, where bulk is to be avoided at all costs.

SCARPA’s Liskamm GTX mountaineering boots are stiff enough to handle all sorts of tough terrain, but flexible enough to wear in comfort all day long.

If you cater to warm-weather stalking bowhunters, who want to feel a twig underneath as they slip cautiously through the woods, light is right. But what about a rifle hunter trailing elk in the mountains? There, a light boot will kill his feet—and the hunt. That was my dilemma last summer as I prepared for my first elk hunt in the Blue Mountains of eastern Oregon. Since I was hunting in late October and wasn’t concerned about snow and ultra-cold weather, I figured I didn’t need a heavy insulated boot. But I would be walking all day and climbing steep, rocky slopes, so sturdy boots were a must. What I was looking for was a heavy-duty model capable of giving me a lot of ankle and foot support, but also flexible enough so I didn’t feel I was wearing Herman Munster boots. I surprised myself by opting (at the urging of a hunting buddy who said the boots would be up to the challenge) for a

Selling tip

pair of 9-inch-high SCARPA Liskamm GTX mountaineering boots. SCARPA is an acronym for a very long name in Italian that translates into Associated Shoe Manufacturing Company of the Asolo Mountain area of Italy. It’s a family-owned business that has been building performance footwear in northern Italy for more than 70 years. It specializes, obviously, in mountaineering boots, and my pair (which weighed 5 pounds) reflected that heritage. When I first laced them up, I felt I had passed through a time portal into a different era, one in which canvas rucksacks, tweed breeches, and Borsalino hats were de rigueur. Or maybe it was just the loden

These boots are not cheap, but they’re built to last for years. It’s like buying a pair of quality binoculars. In that case the argument is, “You can’t hit what

green rather than the camo I wear so often. But I quickly grew to understand the build quality of these boots. The solid construction gives the foot unparalleled support when sidehilling. Hunters often consider build quality when moving uphill, but going downhill is often the more difficult task. The Liskamm GTX uses an EVA midsole that provides a good deal of cushioning and shock-absorbing ability. (That last item was key for me, as I’ve been dealing with a heel spur for months.) The boot also features a Gore-Tex liner and a full rubber rand (both of which help keep it waterproof ), as well as a full-length shank (which helps make the boot stiff enough for sidehilling in relative comfort). The ankle is flexible (again, for comfort) and the fully gusseted double tongue helps keep out annoying debris. The Vibram sole is robust and can handle just about anything elk country will throw at them. In my experience, stiff boots such as these require break-in time. I wore mine on a short antelope hunt where they broke in quickly, with no hotspots. One morning, in particular, summed up the boot’s overall performance. My guide and I had climbed up to a high meadow at first light to intercept some elk that he knew would be moving through a draw. But when we got to the top and glassed the area, we saw that the elk were about to flank us. We had to move quickly downhill and across a boulder field to get ahead of them. The uneven ground was studded with rocks, and I felt as if I were running over duckpin bowling balls. I was sure I would end up turning an ankle. And yet, the boots were up to the task. We got into position just in time, only to have a lone cow wind us and alert the herd. They fled into another drainage, where we heard a shot. Well, that’s elk hunting, and this is one tough pair of boots. SRP: $369. (303998-2895; scarpa.com)

you can’t see.” Here, the equivalent message is, “You can’t get what you can’t get to.” If your customer is going to hunt tough country, he needs a tough boot. And that kind of quality doesn’t come cheap.

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new products (Continued from page 52)

the smallest laser diode ever offered, with full windage and elevation adjustability and a master on/off switch. The new units fit seamlessly over the Glock’s backstrap and require no gunsmithing to install. Because the laser utilizes Crimson Trace’s patented instinctive activation system, the user simply picks up the gun in a normal firing grip and the pressure sensor in the grip module instantly activates the laser to project a bright dot on the target. SRP: $279. (800-442-2406; crimsontrace.com)

EOTech

Zippo Outdoors is introducing black and camo versions of its famous hand warmers. Each model can provide warmth for as long as 12 hours.

Zippo Outdoors Zippo Outdoors, maker of the worldfamous windproof lighter with the lifetime guarantee, is introducing black and camo versions of its hand warmer. The new versions are the same size as the existing high-polished-chrome hand warmer and will function at the same level. The black hand warmer is available in a matte finish; the camo version wears Realtree AP. Each warmer features a platinum-catalyzed glass fiber burner that lights quickly and burns reliably. The result is radiant heat without a flame, and each unit is capable of producing up to 10 times as much heat as most disposable warmers for up to 12 hours, using just 0.4 ounces of fuel (lighter fluid). SRP: $19.95, black; $29.95, camo. Both are backed by a one-year guarantee. (814-368-2700;

Last year, EOTech and Insight Technology pooled their resources to create the L-3 Commercial Products Group. The group’s mission is to offer the commercial market a single source that delivers products such as holographic sighting systems, tactical lasers, illuminators, thermal imaging equipment, and firearms-training devices. The first product to roll off the new assembly line—the Tactical Shotgun Forend with an Integrated LED Light (TSFL)—just made its debut at the 2012 SHOT Show. In the past, LE operators would have to source a light as well as an attachment point, typically a Picatinny rail—all of which added weight. But by combining the light into a replacement forend the TSFL makes the process easier and reduces weight. The TSFL features ambidextrous on/ off pressure pads. Settings include constant on, momentary, strobe, and off. In high-pressure situations, simply tap the

Browning’s aluminum Tactical Hunter Control Point flashlight benefits from a longer runtime as well as a brighter LED light.

pressure pads for activation; the operator never has to adjust his or her grip to do so. The offhand is always on the forend, at the ready, making this new integrated forend light ideal for law enforcement and even home defense. The integrated lights will be available in either 125- or 200-lumen outputs and will run on one CR123 Lithium battery for at least 90 minutes. Each light is waterproof to 1 meter and features a custom texture, so you won’t lose contact or grip in high-pressure situations. Designed to fit Mossberg 500 and 590 and the Remington 870 pump shotguns, the TSFL will be available under the EOTech brand. SRP: $350. (888-368-4656; eotech-inc.com)

Browning New in Browning’s diverse line of flashlights for the avid outdoorsman is the updated Tactical Hunter Control Point model, which now has a 20 percent The Crimson Trace Glock Gen 4 Lasergrip (four-hour battery life) fits full-size, compact, and subcompact 9mm and .40-caliber pistols.

zippo.com)

Crimson Trace Corp. The new Glock Gen 4 Lasergrips (fits full-size, compact, and subcompact 9mm and .40-caliber pistols) are zeroed at the factory and offer a four-hour battery life as well as the most powerful laser permitted by law. The low-profile Lasergrip is fully compatible with the recently launched Lightguard tactical light, turning any Glock into the ultimate in low-light defensive handguns. These Lasergrips feature february/march 2012 ❚ SHot BuSineSS ❚ 49

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new products

Utility Flame

Sinclair International’s new and improved F-Class bipod can be easily adjusted from 5.5 inches high to more than 10 inches.

brighter Luxeon Rebel LED light. The light also benefits from a longer runtime of up to 60 hours. It features all-aluminum construction with O-ring seal for water-resistance, advanced digital circuitry for maximum power, and a Control Point Rotating Selector Switch on the tail cap. It also offers five brightness levels and three flashing modes (fast strobe, normal strobe, and S.O.S.). Available in black or Mossy Oak New Break-Up camo. SRP: $74.99 to $84.99. (801-876-2711; Go to: www.ShotBusiness.com for free info.

browning.com)

Previously available only to the military, Utility Flame is a lightweight gel that provides a safe, non-toxic flame that burns at up to 1,358 degrees F. It has a shelf life of at least six years, produces no smoke or odor, and is non-explosive. In addition, it is FAA-approved for airline travel so it can be transported globally by airplane, and will burn at high elevations (more than 10,000 feet) and at temperatures as low as -23 degrees F. A single 1.25-ounce package can burn by itself for more than 20 minutes, giving outdoorsmen ample time to build a roaring fire. All the user needs to do is tear open the package, squeeze out the gel, and light it with a match. Utility Flame will be available to retailers this spring. SRP: $5.99. (877-773-5774; utilityflame)

Sinclair International The third-generation F-Class bipod includes many new features that longdistance shooters have requested. The major enhancement is a precise elevationcontrol system. In addition, the new bipod weighs nearly a full pound less than its predecessor because the arched one-piece frame is now made of 7075 T6 aluminum. Adjustable legs with new laser-etched graduations allow a shooter to easily return to a favorite height setting. Vertical height adjusts from 5.5 inches to 10.25 inches, and the leg heights are indepenThe easy-to-pack FogKlear from LensPen isn’t your average lenscleaning handkerchief. The soft cloth can deliver more than 200 anti-fog applications, with no additional liquids or sprays required.

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dently adjustable—an important feature when shooting on uneven ground. (800717-8211; sinclairintl.com)

Sentry Solutions The Armorer’s Kit builds on the concept that the right lube, rather than how you clean, is what boosts the performance and reliability of firearms. The kit contains a complete range of Sentry Solutions oil-free products, including Smooth-Kote (a selfcleaning, dry lubricant and bore treatment), BP2000 powder, Hi-Slip Grease, Tuf-Cloth, Tuf-Glide, Marine Tuf-Cloth, and Marine Tuf-Glide, along with lint-free application tools, patches, swabs, gloves, and instructions for the care of 30 or more firearms. Sentry Solutions’ products use several forms of molybdenum disulphide and proprietary lubricants to smooth and protect metal surfaces at the molecular level, thus preventing gear from becoming dust magnets. SRP: $64.95. (800-546-

ance; it can cost a hunter the shot of a lifetime. FogKlear from LensPen gives lenses strong anti-fog protection in a natural fiber cloth. Each FogKlear cloth offers more than 200 anti-fog applications. And FogKlear does all the work itself—no liquids, sprays, or tissues. FogKlear is also a key component of the OutDoorPro Kit, and is environment-friendly. SRP: $8.95. (877-608-0868; lenspen.com)

Battenfeld Technologies Keeping a scope perfectly aligned is critical to long-range accuracy, especially when using a bullet-drop-compensating model.

That’s because a scope that’s off the vertical by only a couple of degrees can cause a significant decrease in accuracy, especially on longer shots. The Wheeler Engineering Anti-Cant Indicator ensures that the rifle is always held nearly perfectly vertical, helping to assure maximum accuracy. The Wheeler Engineering Anti-Cant Indicator, crafted from anodized, machined aluminum, is available in both 1-inch and 30mm models. It easily attaches to a scope tube in the same fashion as a ring. The Anti-Cant Indicator is easy to view from all shooting positions, and when not in use it folds in for protection. (573-445-9200; battenfeldtechnologies.com)

The Anti-Cant Indicator from Battenfeld Technologies helps a shooter make sure the riflescope is properly installed on the vertical axis. That’s important, as a scope that’s canted slightly right or left cannot deliver maximum accuracy.

8049; sentrysolutions.com)

LensPen-Parkside Optical Foggy lenses on glasses, binoculars, and riflescopes is more than a mere annoy-

Crystal clear in every lighting condition, nothing gives you faster acquisition than our holographic weapon sights.

transform your arsenal.

512 HWS mossy oak

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Visit L-3com.com /eotech

1/13/12 12:17 PM


new products

MKS Supply

The Chiappa Little Sharps Rifle in the new hot centerfire .17-caliber Hornady Hornet (3,650 fps) made its debut at the SHOT Show. The elegant and beautiful rifle is faithfully patterned after the original full-size 1874 Sharps design, right through to the octagonal barrel. The falling block action is reduced in size by 20 percent, and the overall weight is about half of the original Sharps. SRP: $1,399. (877-4274867; mkssupply) (Continued on page 49)

52 â?š SHot BuSineSS â?š february/march 2012

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LIGHTWEIGHT, SLIM, HIGH PRECISION Z3 AND Z5. THE 1 INCH RIFLESCOPES

A wide field of view or high magnification for precise long range shots: The slender profile provide both of these and its light weight, the perfect companion for demanding hunting trips.

Z5 66 % GREATER FIELD OF VIEW* 66% GREATER MAGNIFICATION RANGE* Percentages relate to a unit with 3x zoom

Z5 3.5-18X44 Z5 5-25X52

Z3 COMPACT, RUGGED, RELIABLE Z3 3-9X36 Z3 3-10X42 Z3 4-12X50

SEE THE UNSEEN

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MODEL 700 BDL 50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION CHAMBERED IN 7MM REMINGTON MAGNUM

MODEL 700 XCR II AVAILABLE IN A WIDE RANGE OF CHAMBERINGS

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SHOT Business -- February/March 2012