THE RISKS AND REWARDS OF PURCHASEORDER FINANCING Pg. 20
THE FABLED 1911, A DESIGN MORE THAN A CENTURY OLD, REMAINS A MARKET FORCE. DEMAND FOR PRECISION RIFLES AND TACTICAL SHOTGUNS WILL CONTINUE TO GROW Pg. 27
ALSO IN THIS ISSUE FIRING LINE
The Steyr Scout RFR takes rimямБres to a new level Pg. 22
Final Approach improves the waterfowling experience Pg. 48
“Ready to Build” Semi-Custom • “Design to Build” Full-Custom Wide Range of Products • Smaller Unit Requirements U.S. Based Support Team • Quick Turn Around
M AKE IT HA PP EN 8 55 -5 6 5 - 6 7 8 7 • i n f o @ ja p a n o p ti c s.c o. j p w w w. j ap a no p t i c s.c o. j p
Come visit us at the Supplier’s Showcase at SHOT Show Jan. 22 - 23, 2018 5th ﬂoor of the Convention Center Booth #S2423, 9am - 5pm
SHOT BUSINESS JANUARY 2018 VOLUME 26, ISSUE 1
28 36 40
FROM THE NSSF Challenges and opportunities await us in 2018.
NSSF UPDATE House Fix NICS Bill advances; “Don’t Lie” campaign targets illegal gun purchases.
FROM THE COUNTER Dedicated service is a Tennessee retailer’s key to keeping registers ringing.
RETAILER TOOLBOX How to spot—and avoid—email scams.
YOU SHOULD KNOW A seminar you won’t want to miss at the SHOT Show.
RIFLES 2018 Long-range precision sport and hunting rifles are set to make a big run this year. BY RICHARD MANN SHOTGUNS 2018 Tactical models may grab the attention, but there’s still lots of new shotguns for hunters. BY RICHARD MANN HANDGUNS 2018 Though the 1911 platform still rules the roost, wheel guns remain in the game. BY RICHARD MANN
EDITOR’S NOTE The roadblock you may not be able see.
NEWS BRIEFS Savage Arms gives the venerable Model 110 a serious upgrade; press manufacturer Bliss Munitions Equipment is alive and very well; W.R. Case crafts a 9/11 knife memorial; and Safariland SAVES Club adds its 2,000th member.
FYI The risks and rewards of purchase-order financing.
FIRING LINE The Steyr Scout RFR takes the rimfire platform to a new level.
UNDERCOVER SHOPPER Checking the pulse of the MSR market in Detroit.
WHAT’S SELLING WHERE
GOOD STUFF Final Approach is no stick in the mud. NEW PRODUCTS The Oxx CoffeeBoxx; Gerber’s Empower Automatic Series of tactical knives; and Browning’s Skyway USB rechargeable flashlight.
Table Talk Impediments to success can be hiding in plain sight
oad blocks can come in many forms, and sometimes we don’t recognize them even if they’re right there in front of us. But as a manager or owner of a retail operation, you need to recognize them and understand that sometimes these road blocks are of our own doing. That was just one of the takeaways I gleaned from a remarkable book, Creativity, Inc., written by Ed Catmull, president of Pixar Animation and Disney Animation, that details the success of Pixar, the computer-animation powerhouse. Early on he discusses a road block entirely of his own making— a long table in a conference room. Though he admitted the table was elegant, he ultimately came to loathe it. “We’d hold regular meetings about our movies around that table—30 of us facing off in two long lines, often with more people seated along the walls—and everyone was so spread out that it was difficult to communicate.” The “power people” had seats at the center of the table, and the farther from that spot you sat, the less important you seemed to be, and the less likely you were to contribute ideas. I related to that anecdote instantly. Many years ago, I worked for a manager who loved to conduct meetings at a custombuilt conference table. It, too, was long and elegant, and he sat at the head, like King Arthur, where he held court. There was a pecking order, and those of us at the far end of that table—which we, too, came to loathe—were made to feel our lack of status in countless ways. It was a real barrier to solving the many problems we faced
as a publishing company in a very competitive environment. Catmull admits that it took years for him to realize that the table was impeding the creative process of his team. Why did it take so long? Because the seating arrangements were “designed for the convenience of the leaders, including me. Sincerely believing that we were in an inclusive meeting, we saw nothing amiss because we didn’t feel excluded.” The solution was simple. The long, elegant table was carted out and replaced with a smaller, square table. Place cards, formal indicators of hierarchy, also were done away with. The result? Better interaction among the team, and a better flow of ideas. Creating an atmosphere that encourages contributions from every member of your team is vital to your continued success. You want that extra brainpower fully on board to help you solve the ongoing challenges that retailers face on a daily basis. Your particular road block may not be a long, elegant table. You may not even see it. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t there. Take a look around; it could be hiding right in front you, in plain sight.
Slaton L. White, Editor
SLATON L. WHITE, Editor James A. Walsh, Art Director Margaret M. Nussey, Managing Editor David E. Petzal, Shooting Editor David Maccar, Special Projects Editor Judith Weber, Digital Content Producer Hilary Ribons, Editorial Assistant CONTRIBUTING EDITORS Larry Ahlman, Barbara Baird, Scott Bestul, Philip Bourjaily, Christopher Cogley, Jock Elliott, Tim Irwin, William F. Kendy, Richard Mann, Peter B. Mathiesen, Brian McCombie, Tom Mohrhauser, Robert Sadowski, Robert F. Staeger, Peter Suciu, Wayne Van Zwoll ADVERTISING: 212-779-5316 Gregory D. Gatto, Senior Vice President, Managing Director Jeff Roberge, Advertising Director Brian Peterson, Western Sporting Goods Sales Katie Logan, Southern Sporting Goods Sales David Hawkey, Northeast Sporting Goods Sales Amanda Gastelum, Integrated Marketing Director Ingrid Reslmaier, Marketing Design Director BUSINESS OPERATIONS Tara Bisciello, Business Manager MANUFACTURING Michelle Doster, Group Production Director Kelly Kramer Weekley, Senior Production Manager BONNIER Chairman, Tomas Franzén Head of Business Area, Magazines, Lars Dahmén Chief Executive Officer, Eric Zinczenko Chief Financial Officer, Joachim Jaginder Chief Operating Officer, David Ritchie Chief Marketing Officer, Elizabeth Burnham Murphy Chief Digital Revenue Officer, Sean Holzman Vice President, Integrated Sales, John Graney Vice President, Digital Operations, David Butler Vice President, Public Relations, Perri Dorset General Counsel, Jeremy Thompson
SHOT Business (ISSN 1081-8618) is published 7 times a year in 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 26, issue 1, Copyright © 2018 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 064702359. SHOT Business accepts no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts and photographs. All correspondence should be accompanied by a stamped, self-addressed 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. 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 email SBZcustserv@cdsfulfllment.com, in the U.S. call toll-free 866-6154345, outside the U.S. call 515-237-3697, 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 REPRINTS: E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. POSTMASTER: Please send address changes to SHOT Business, P.O. Box 6364 Harlan, IA 51593.
NSSF’s mock OSHA and ATF “ The audits are valuable tools that have helped us build a repertoire of business best practices. And the NSSF’s research and reporting has made us a smarter competitor for new shooters in our market.
Jared Sloane, Operations Director Shoot Smart Indoor Range & Training Center Fort Worth | Grand Prairie | Benbrook Texas
NSSF Members like Jared receive benefits such as: Representation in Washington and State Capitals Compliance Support Industry Research SHOT Show Benefits
...and much more
Visit us at booth L231
Go to nssf.org or call 203-426-1320 ext. 209 for more information on membership categories and find out how NSSF can work for you.
NEWS BRIEFS NEWS
Bits & Pieces Rise Armament Expands
PR O M OT I O N S
AWAR D S
O UT R E AC H
The Next Level Savage unveils the new Model 110
Rise Armament, a manufacturer and supplier of AR components and firearms, recently executed a major facility expansion in an effort to support the rapid growth of the company. The company was able to reallocate space within its current facility to streamline daily operations, ultimately improving operating efficiency. “It’s exciting to be in a position that demands facility expansion,” says president Matt Torres. “This advancement will undoubtedly help us take the next step in meeting the needs of our valued customers.” Located in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, the Rise Armament facility now encompasses more than 55,000 square feet of manufacturing, shipping, product design, and operations space.
S&W Announces Promotion Sue Cupero has been promoted to the newly created position of senior director of sales for Smith & Wesson. In her new role, Cupero will be responsible for all sporting goods distributor and independent retail sales for Smith & Wesson, M&P, and Thompson/Center brands, as well as law enforcement wholesale and reseller sales.
This product is from sustainably managed forests and controlled sources.
Savage’s upgrade of the Model 110 is designed to take it to the next plateau in fit, form, and function.
he Savage Model 110 first saw light in 1958, making it the oldest continuously manufactured boltaction rifle in North America. But 60 years on, it was time for an overhaul. The new Model 110, which debuts at the 2018 SHOT Show, is a fullfledged redesign that takes the rifle to the next plateau in fit, form, and function. JANUARY 2018
NEW S BRIEFS
The AccuFit stock allows a hunter to achieve a custom fit without having to buy a custom rifle.
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Raising the Bar “The conversation started with style and aesthetics,” says senior marketing manager Beth Shimanski. “Everyone agreed we needed to freshen up the Model 110. As we got further into the process, however, we started thinking a lot more about the individual shooter—what their unique needs are and what drives them to ultimately go to a gunsmith. That’s when we decided to really raise the bar and make the gun fit better. That’s how the AccuFit system was born.” As serious target shooters can attest, proper fit is paramount to consistent accuracy. “Competitive shooters wouldn’t dream of shooting a rifle that doesn’t fit them properly,” says Shimanski. “In contrast, most hunters are content with a onesize-fits-all philosophy— which explains why fit remains one of the major obstacles standing in the way of their
enjoying more consistent shooting.” A form-fitting rifle offers more benefits than just feeling good when you throw it up to your shoulder. The right length of pull and comb height give you a solid cheek-to-stock connection, proper eye relief and a comfortable, personalized fit—which collectively add up to improved, repeatable shooting form. “There’s nothing magical about fit that mechanically makes a rifle shoot any more accurately,” says Shimanski. “But proper fit allows you to shoulder the gun and align your eye with the sights in a consistent manner, without having to move your head around to compensate for being the wrong height and distance from the scope. And better shooting form boosts accuracy.” She also notes that the dynamics of hunting often demand quick shots taken from a variety of positions. “The
ability to quickly shoulder the rifle and confidently take the shot, versus struggling to find your anchor point and line up the scope, can mean the difference between punching your tag and missing,” she says. “Savage’s AccuFit system lets you dial in the perfect fit, so there’s less room for error at the moment of truth.” AccuFit features adjustable components that allow hunters to custom-fit both comb height and length of pull without taking the rifle to a gunsmith. The only tool needed is a Phillipshead screwdriver. Comb height is controlled by five riser settings. Length of pull is likewise fully adaptable to the shooter’s stature by using up to four inserts included with the rifle. No matter which combination of adjustments you make, the Model 110 won’t become unbalanced. For a rundown of the new models, turn to page 27.
Alive and Well
ast summer when I toured a new ammo factory, I marveled at the old Bliss presses, behemoths from another era, that had been retrofitted with modern software in order to fit seamlessly into the ammo line. I wrongly assumed that the press manufacturer was long out of business (and said so in print) until Patrick Tully, director of defense sales at Bliss Munitions Equipment, contacted me. He said, “To paraphrase Mark Twain, the reports of Bliss’ death are greatly exaggerated. Bliss Munitions Equipment is alive and well and better than ever.” Indeed it is. Tully tells me Bliss was founded by E.W. Bliss, who built his first press in 1857. He quickly grew his small enterprise into the world’s leading press-manufacturing company. “Bliss presses were the first choice for various enterprises, including ammunition, minting, canning, automotive, rail, aerospace, and general metal stamping,” Tully says. “Thousands of Bliss presses are still in use around the globe. More ammunition has been built on Bliss presses than on any other manufacturer’s equipment. Today, Bliss Munitions Equipment is a division of Schuler, the world’s largest press-manufacturing company.” BME manufactures a wide range of ammunition production equipment, including de-coiler machines, deepdraw presses, and transfer presses. BME also supplies full production lines that include all of the other ancillary production machinery to provide a complete ammunition solution. In all, Bliss equipment produces ammunition from 5.56mm through 12.7mm. Tully says one of the benefits of being part of Schuler is its global reach. “We have more than 500 technical service technicians located in more than 36 countries. We manufacture over 90 percent of all components and assemblies in our machines, which enables us to control the quality of our machines. BME is also a technology leader that produces innovative multi-functional machines, including a
combination loader/bullet assembly machine, draw presses with the ability to produce two different draws simultaneously, and a machine that performs high-speed head turning and mouth trimming in one machine.” The company also rebuilds vintage Bliss presses, like the ones I saw, with modern lubrication and control systems. “When we’re done, it looks like a brand-new model,” Tully says. “And none of this work is outsourced. We do it all in our facilities in Michigan. We like to say, ‘Bliss presses don’t die—they just get rebuilt.’ “Most important, though, the best example of our livelihood can be seen in our new line of innovative draw presses, transfer presses, and bulletassembly presses, which will be highlighted at the 2018 SHOT Show.” (blissmunitions.com)
—Slaton L. White
Bliss Munitions Equipment builds a wide variety of machinery used by ammo manufacturers.
NEW S BRIEFS
Firearms Business Insurance Wholesalers & Distributors Retail Sales Manufacturers & Importers Ammunition & Bullet Manufacturers Indoor & Outdoor Ranges Gunsmiths Firearms Instructors
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BUSHNELL ADDS TO ELITE TACTICAL LINE Precise delivery of rounds at extreme distances requires skills honed through rigorous practice. It also demands optics that are crafted to be precision tools. The XRS II is crafted to the most exacting standards to lead the Elite Tactical line of precision optics and perform at distances that were once unimaginable. Offering edge-toedge clarity in any condition with ED Prime glass, plus an
impressive 4.5–30X zoom and wide 50mm objective lens, the XRS II is designed to easily acquire targets more than 1,000 yards away. Water, fog, dust, and
debris are no match for the exclusive, patented, EXO Barrier protective lens coating.
The XRS II comes with a removable throw lever for quick magnification changes, and features a locking diopter that won’t budge. In addition, the locking windage turret and an elevation turret feature the RevLimiter Zero Stop. Available in gray, black, or flat dark earth with the G3 reticle, the XRS II can also be had with the Horus H59 and TRMR3 reticles. SRP: starts at $3,149.95. (bushnell.com)
W.R. Case Crafts Knife Memorial September 11, 2001, is now a date firmly etched in the consciousness of all Americans. W.R. Case & Sons Cutlery Co. unveiled the September 11 Memorial V-42, a limitedproduction World War II–era military knife featuring donated steel recovered from the World Trade Center, at a special event held last November at the National September 11 Memorial & Museum in New York City. The three commemorative V-42s—which will never be made available for sale to the public—were crafted to uniquely honor and recognize three specific groups of Americans whose stories are forever embedded in the his-
tory of that tragic day: the citizens who were the innocent victims of the attacks, the first responders who heroically rushed into action, and the men and women of Combined Joint Special Operations Task Force-North (aka Task Force Dagger), who served as our nation’s military response. Lieutenant General John F. Mulholland Jr., a senior officer in the United States Army and former associate director of the Central Intelligence Agency for Military Affairs, coordinated the delivery of the recovered steel to the Case factory in Bradford, Pennsylvania, and commissioned the development of the knives.
“W.R. Case has been a longtime supporter of the U.S. Armed Forces,” says Mulholland. “As we set out to create this tribute to the men and women who have
fought bravely to defend our freedom since that fateful day, we knew that Case was the right partner to help forge a symbol of American strength and resilience.”
INNOVATION LIVES HERE. This is where innovation lives. Where American ingenuity drives a thriving, global brand. We’re bringing real-world advancements to the industry like never before. This is our uncompromising vision. This is what makes us Taurus USA. Always Bring It.ª TaurusUSA.com
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The SAVES Club
om, medic, survivor. Those are the three badges of honor Dani Kamenar wears with pride. Her six-month-old daughter, Brooklyn, is also a survivor. She claimed that title before she was born.
“My daughter is tiny. At six months, she’s only 11 pounds 15 ounces,” says Kamenar, a paramedic from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. “We’re happy she’s here and she’s safe, but it’s bittersweet.”
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A volatile patient in the back of an ambulance hit Kamenar in the abdomen when she was 32 weeks pregnant. Kamenar’s body armor, issued six months earlier, absorbed most of the blow, but not all of it, resulting in Brooklyn’s premature birth four weeks later. “It would have been one thing if it was just me who got hurt, but me and my baby in harm’s way means my family would have had two less members without that vest.” Brooklyn is SAVES Club member #1988. Her mom is #1989. The Safariland Group’s SAVES Club, started in 1976, reached its 2000th save in 2017. Brooklyn and Dani are Safariland’s first dual save with one vest. “The SAVES Club is the heart of Safariland,” says Ed Hinchey, The Safariland Group senior armor technical specialist and director of SAVES Club. “It reminds everyone under the Safariland umbrella that what we do counts. Doing it right matters every time. There’s no better way to keep that on the front burner than to put a face in front of them.” Hinchey is SAVE #941. A bulletproof vest saved his life while he was on duty as a police officer 12 years ago. When he retired he accepted an offer from Safariland. “I went from the best job on the planet to the second-best job,” he says. “From taking care of bad guys to taking care of good guys.” —Kris Millgate
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SAVES Club member Dani Kamenar and her daughter, Brooklyn.
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* Prices are subject to change. ** Also available in CAR, Standard, and XL Handguard Configurations.
» » » »
BY STEVE SANETTI , NSSF PRESIDENT AND CEO
Welcome to 2018! Challenges and opportunities await
t’s pretty obvious to all of us in the industry that 2017 was a tumultuous year. We had the highs of a friendly new administration, with a Congress and a new Supreme Court judge who respect the rights of law-abiding citizens to purchase, own, and use firearms safely and responsibly. Yet we also had the lows of a slower sales year and the unspeakable horrors caused by deranged killers of innocent people, in one instance highlighting a failure of the National Instant Background Check System (NICS) to obtain and furnish the very records that licensed retailers must rely upon by law when making or denying the sale of a firearm to a prospective purchaser.
While overall sales in 2017 seemed to be somewhat lower that the extraordinarily high sales of 2016, this “new normal” is still considerably higher than that of just a few years ago. Indeed, the long-term trend is inescapable: More people from a variety of backgrounds are coming to the shooting sports than we ever would have thought possible, even as recently as 2007. Fatal firearms accidents have continued to decline in this period to now represent only 1.7 percent of all accidental deaths nationwide. Our industry continues to work tirelessly to lower that extraordinarily low
figure even further through programs such as Project ChildSafe, recognized by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) in 2017 as the most successful nationwide program in helping to decrease accidents involving firearms. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the SHOT Show, our industry’s singular event that begins the new year. It will be a year of challenges and opportunities as we all try to navigate the uncertainties of politics and the marketplace. It falls upon us to put our best foot forward during these uncertain
times, when the gun-control lobby and an often hostile media seek to portray us falsely, either through ignorance or to advance their agenda by sensationalizing and clouding a highly emotional issue. But we know that a common bond unites our industry and our customers. The enjoyment of a day afield with family and friends, the respect for the great outdoors, the American traditions of hunting and the shooting sports, and the rights of lawabiding Americans bring together all generations and segments of our great, diverse
The enjoyment of a day afield with family and friends is one of the most important long-term benefits of America’s hunting tradition.
nation. There is perhaps nothing more exasperating than to be blamed for a crime that we did not commit, to watch the genuinely guilty go unpunished—and turn to be faced with demands that the lawabiding must submit to ever more governmental controls in the name of controlling the lawless, something experience shows is the wrong approach. We hope that in the coming year, which includes a mid-term election, our business climate will stabilize and that the aberrant misuse of our industry’s products will continue to decrease, as it has during the last 25 years. With the vast array of products on display at the SHOT Show, hunters, recreational shooters, and those seeking personal protection have a wide variety from which to choose. We will continue to welcome new participants to the shooting sports, and we will continue to represent our industry, to all who will listen, as a responsible driver of wholesome outdoor recreation and personal security for those who choose to accept the serious responsibilities that come with the lawful ownership of our products. Working together, our industry will continue to promote, protect, and preserve hunting and the shooting
Steve Sanetti NSSF President and CEO
by steve sanetti , nssf president and ceo
House Fix NICS Bill Advances
n November, by a vote of 17 to 6, the U.S. House Judiciary Committee passed H.R. 4477, one of the NSSF-supported measures that have been introduced in both houses and are intended to ensure federal and state authorities comply with existing law and accurately report relevant criminal history and mental health records to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). NSSF praised U.S. Reps. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) and John Culberson (R-Texas) for their leadership on introducing bipartisan Fix NICS legislation in the House. NSSF was awaiting word on a floor vote as this issue of SHOT Business went to press.
“We are deeply appreciative of both Congressmen Cuellar and Culberson for demonstrating leadership in the House of Representatives to encourage state and federal agencies to enter all applicable records in the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System,” said Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF senior vice president and general counsel. “This legislation will fix NICS so that background checks are accurate and reliable.” The bill penalizes federal agencies that fail to properly report relevant records, incentivizes states to improve their overall reporting, and directs more federal funding to the
accurate reporting of domestic violence records. The Fix NICS campaign was launched by the firearms industry in 2013. NSSF’s work on Fix NICS has resulted in reforms being adopted in 16 states and a 170 percent increase in records submission to 4.5 million in 2014, up from only from 1.7 million in 2013. Several states, and as tragically learned through recent events some federal agencies, still are not fully participating in submitting records to keep firearms from those prohibited from purchasing them. Congressman Cuellar praised the bipartisan effort
that offers promise to strengthen existing laws. “Following the horrific shooting that occurred in my district, in Sutherland Springs, Texas, there is a call to action to prevent this kind of tragedy from happening again. The Fix NICS Act is an example of both parties in both chambers of Congress working together to set aside partisan politics and offer real solutions to the American people.” Congressman Culberson pointed to the fact this legislation is intended to bolster existing law, saying, “Had existing law been enforced, the horrific tragedy in Sutherland Springs would have never occurred. I urge my fellow colleagues in Congress to support this critical, lifesaving piece of legislation.”
CAMPAIGN TARGETS ILLEGAL GUN PURCHASES
s part of an ongoing national effort to help prevent illegal “straw” purchases of firearms, NSSF and ATF in November reminded the Boston-area public that stiff penalties are in place for individuals convicted of such purchases. Billboard advertisements for the “Don’t Lie for the Other Guy” program were purchased by NSSF in key locations throughout the region with the message, “Buy a Gun for Someone Who Can’t and Buy Yourself 10 Years in Jail. Don’t Lie for the Other Guy.” The month-long publicawareness campaign was officially launched with a short program at the Bass Pro
Shops in Foxborough, Massachusetts. Present at the event were representatives of the ATF Boston Field Division, Massachusetts State Police, the Norfolk County Sheriff ’s Office, the Foxborough Police Department, and NSSF. The Boston campaign delivered a total of 12.9 million impressions through billboards and social media. The message could be seen by commuters on all the MBTA lines in and out of Boston. Additionally, “Don’t Lie for the Other Guy” messages were displayed on digital billboards along key road-
ways and arteries, including but not limited to Interstates 93, 495, and 290, as well as Routes 9 and 146. “Don’t Lie for the Other Guy” radio advertising reached across Boston airwaves in several local stations, delivering more than 1.2 million impressions, while the social media component was highly targeted both demographically and geographically through Facebook and Instagram, as well as in apps. Boston was chosen for this special campaign by ATF. No taxpayer dollars were used. The program is funded in full by the firearms industry.
“Don’t Lie” is a cooperative program of ATF and NSSF. The effort was developed more than a decade ago to raise public awareness about the seriousness of the crime of purchasing a firearm for someone who cannot legally do so. To legally purchase a firearm, a person must be able to pass an FBI National Instant Criminal Background Check and fully comply with state and local laws. When a criminal knows he cannot pass this check, he may try to induce a friend or other person to make the purchase on his behalf, which is known as a straw purchase and is a felony.
© 2018 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.
BY AUTHOR UPD ATETH E COUNT FROM ER HERE
FINAL FLIGHT OUTFITTERS , UNION CITY , TENNESSEE
Dedicated Service Offering to install accessories in-store for free helps drive sales
esting on the eastern edge of the Mississippi Flyway, this western Tennessee retailer is located 50 miles south of Paducah, Kentucky, and 110 miles north of Memphis, Tennessee. With more than 25,000 square feet of floor space, the store stocks an average of 4,500 firearms. This number includes up to 1,200 shotguns at any given time. There is a 35-yard outdoor shooting range used by patrons, as well as a gunsmithing department.
Final Flight employs an average of 45 full- and parttime staffers, including two full-time gunsmiths. Winter hours are 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Sundays. RINGING THE REGISTER WITH HARD-HUNTING CUSTOMERS
While many stores focus these day on specialty homedefense markets, Final Fight is a hunter’s retailer. Its inventory of hunting guns and hunting accessories significantly surpasses large big-box stores. In addition to being one of the most notable purveyors of shotguns in the country, the store is renowned in the industry for its high-traffic turns on steel shot and
decoys. On average, the store turns more than 1 million pounds of steel shotgun shells annually. Although the elections last year were a concern, this store was ready. “We had a significant reserve of both MSRs [modern sporting rifles] and handguns in inventory, and were confident we could acquire more quickly. With the election of Trump, it has turned out that our sales haven’t dropped much after the election,” says Billy Hazelwood, firearms manager and gunsmith. Final Flight’s customers hunt and hunt hard. While other stores have seen a decline in hunting-gun sales, this retailer’s register has
remained active for long guns, shotguns, handguns, and MSRs. SELLING WITH PASSION AND EXPERIENCE AT THE COUNTER
Hazelwood notes that the MSR rifle counter is still a busy section of the store. Although it is not setting records, it is attracting plenty of consistent attention. “We have always managed to keep exceptionally knowledgeable staff at our counters, and MSRs are no different. Our MSR manager is absolutely consumed by semi-auto rifle performance. His enthusiasm for distance shooting and hunting with an autoloading rifle is infectious. It’s as if he wills the customer into a sale,” says Hazelwood.
Another reason MSR sales are steady is the store’s accessories program. “No other product in the store has the number of accessories that MSRs have. They are profitable SKUs for us and extremely motivating to the customer. For that reason, we install them for free, often while the customer waits. Few customers can modify their guns in a practical manner; oftentimes they damage the rifle in the process. By doing the installations ourselves, it makes the accessory sale efficient and more frequent,” he says. As a bonus, once the custom modifications are complete on one gun, it can be easy to sell the customer another rifle with the goal of
by author here
a different performance spec. In turn, this retailer is selling an additional rifle with more accessories. Another installation service includes the “scope counter.” If a customer buys a scope, the store mounts it and bore-sights it for free while the customer watches. During the holiday season, this counter will often turn nearly a dozen scopes a day. UNPACKING THE HOLIDAYS— GIFT CARDS DRIVE SALES
In western Tennessee, waterfowl season, deer season, Thanksgiving, and Christmas condense into a three-month period. It continues until the closing waterfowl season during the first week of February. The store knows this is a time to staff up and offer promotional sales. Final Flight has found gift cards are an efficient way to make a customer happy and to support multiple return trips to the store. “We live to sell gift cards. They are the best way for a loved one to buy a gift for an active hunter or shooter who probably already has more gear than can be stored in a garage. There is no practical way for the friend or spouse
to know what they need,” says Hazelwood. He adds that typically the cards will be redeemed in February and March, often with customers walking out of the store spending significantly more than the face value on the card. “After the season ends, our waterfowlers know what needs to be replaced or changed. It’s the best time to move inventory out of the store and capture another purchase,” he says. Hazelwood also notes that 10 to 15 percent of the cards are never redeemed. MOVING PRODUCT QUICKLY—CONNECTING WITH CUSTOMERS ON SOCIAL MEDIA
While radio and print once ruled the media mix of this store’s marketing budget, Final Flight is now adapting its approach. This store has recognized that the cell phone dictates how to communicate and connect with customers. “The only way our customer is going hear our radio spot is in the car. Any other time it’s all about the phone,” says Hazelwood. Final Flight has dedicated a full-time employee to social media. At just seven months
out of college, this employee adds multiple posts to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat daily. “We quickly found out just how effective these posts are. If we post a sale item or a product-use video, the product moves immediately—I mean within hours,” he says. Hazelwood states that he sees the program as a priority, so much so he has added another part-time staffer to the program. ADOPTING HIGH STANDARDS TO VET EMPLOYEES
Hazelwood takes his hiring seriously. From his perspective, it is one of the most important management aspects as a retailer. “We vet our employees. They are backgroundchecked and rechecked. We contact every reference and then some. We sell firearms. It is critical that our employees are honest, diligent, and meet the strictest legal requirements,” he says. Once the right employee is found, their job is simple. Be friendly, ask to help, and stay with the customer until they leave. “Our employees know this backwards and forwards. Believe me, they do not want to see the grumpy old-school gunsmith come out!” says Hazelwood, referring to himself and adding, “And they will if they just let a customer wander through the store without an instant greeting or a sincere offer of help. I understand some customers just like to look. If that’s the case, the staff member needs to give them room. However, Final Flight often hires college students as parttimers; Billy Hazelwood (right) is a store gunsmith.
by peter b . UPDATE
the purchaser always has a question.” The store has learned to train and foster loyal employees. It has a long-standing history of hiring part-time college students and then offering them full-time positions after they graduate. LESSON LEARNED FROM THE COUNTER
This retailer is using a valuable matrix to drive sales. MOVING MSRs Investing in an enthusiastic counter-sales employee consumed with auto-loading rifle performance results in measurable MSR sales. INSTALLING ACCESSORIES
Offering custom modifications and installing them for free as the customer waits engages customers and increases the bottom line. SELLING GIFT CARDS For moving inventory after the holidays, gift cards capture repeat and increased sales. ADOPTING SOCIAL MEDIA
Committing resources and staff members to social media promotions drives customers to your store. FOSTERING CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIPS Hiring friendly
sales staff to address customers’ questions in the store leads directly to sales at the counter. Remember, the members of your sales staff are the profit center of your store. Choose wisely.
RETAILER T OOLBOX
by john clark , nssf security consultant team member
Scamming 2.0 Email scams are no longer a cinch to spot
t started with an email from a “Nigerian Prince.” The email was riddled with misspelled words, unintelligible sentences, and, wait, what’s this? If I just cash a check I’ll be rewarded with how much? Sign me up! This early example of “phishing” is one with which most of us are familiar. Phishing is the criminal or otherwise illicit solicitation of personal information, usually via email or by posing as legitimate, trustworthy websites or organizations.
Most phishing is initially carried out by email spoofing or instant messaging. The message will give some urgent reason why the recipient needs to enter their personal information on a fake website that will look identical to a legitimate site with which the recipient is likely familiar. Phishing communications may appear to be from a social media website, auction site, bank, retailer, online payment processor, your company’s IT administrator, or even, believe it or not, from your company’s executives. Another serious threat are emails that contain links to websites infected with malware or ransomware. Now, you may be saying to yourself, “How could someone fall for a scam like this?” I’m here to tell you that even IT experts have fallen victim. What creates an even greater challenge is the fact that so many of us put nearly everything about ourselves out in the public domain. Favorite sports teams, children’s names, the college you attended, and “Happy Birthday” messages are all out there— and how much of that information is connected to your passwords or your “secret” account-access answers? Two new techniques—aptly named “angler phishing” and “smishing”—have emerged, and their use is proving to be a
significant threat. Social media is a great way for people to contact companies about products or services. But cyber-criminals have found this to be a useful means to gain your trust and make you feel safe about sharing sensitive personal information as well. Enter angler phishing. Accomplished through social media platforms, cybercriminals create fake brandsupport pages to solicit user interest. The criminals behind these pages use subtle modifications to domain names; for example, “App1e” versus “Apple.” Did you catch the lowercase “l” being replaced by the numeral “1” (one)? Angler phishers may also add words to domain names, such as “mobile-paypal.com.” Another facet of angler
phishing entails cyber-criminals monitoring social media for product complaints or service requests. Cybercriminals impersonate the contacts for the business, such as managers or customer service agents, then offer support, asking the victim for personal information and often providing a link to a fake website. Once you’re “hooked,” you’re redirected to the phishing website. How do you prevent getting hooked? Always go to the company’s known website and follow the links to its customer support. Or a quick phone call to the legitimate business can do the trick. Now let’s talk about smishing. Also known as “SMS phishing,” this scam sends fake ads, contests, and offers to your mobile devices, with
the intention of tricking you into downloading malware, viruses, etc. The context-specific messages, barrage of alerts, and the constant distraction inherent with smartphones make it significantly likely that one of these messages will get your attention. One common scheme sends an SMS message asking for an urgent response. For example: “We’re contacting you about the promotional offer you signed up for. You’ll be charged $1.50 a day unless you cancel your subscription. To cancel, please visit sucker. com.” Fearing a daily charge, you visit the website. There you’re prompted to download a program, which will be malware that allows your mobile device to be accessed and controlled by the cyber-criminals. The best way to protect yourself from smishing scams is to delete any text message that you didn’t initiate or isn’t from someone you know. If it seems too good to be true, it usually is! You as an FFL retailer want to keep your company secure from these attacks as well. Educate your staff about these scams, remain vigilant with your company’s email accounts, and be prepared to respond to a hack that potentially affects your customers. With a dedicated effort, your sensitive information will remain secure.
BY JIM CURCURUTO , NSSF DIRECTOR , RESEARCH AND MARKET DEVELOPMENT
YOU SHOULD KNOW
Career Advice The Executive Management Seminar at SHOT Show can help keep any executive’s career on track
fter a sold-out inaugural 2017 Executive Management Seminar, the National Shooting Sports Foundation will once again be offering this specialized training as one of the premier education offerings of the 2018 SHOT Show. Designed to specifically address the needs of industry professionals, from up-and-coming managers to presidents and CEOs, the Executive Management Seminar takes place Monday, January 22, the day before the show opens.
This powerful seminar will cover the hottest management techniques and business practices taking place today. Attendees will first hear from Steven Rinella, author and host of the top-rated MeatEater podcast and the MeatEater TV show. After starting out as a magazine writer during the ad-heavy days preceding the dot-com crash, Rinella went on to publish five books on hunting and fishing with major publishing houses. He also hosted The Wild Within, the first and only hunting show to ever appear on the Travel Channel; it went up in flames after just eight episodes. Turning failure into opportunity, he created MeatEater, the first ever hunting TV show carried by Netflix. After five successful seasons, he also launched the MeatEater podcast, which is routinely ranked by iTunes as the leading podcast in the outdoor space. His presentation, “Lessons from the Field: Thriving in a Changing Marketplace,” will discuss the failures, successes, and luck— both good and bad—of an outdoor media career. You’ll learn what determines whether a leader prospers or fails in our second
keynote address, “Impact: Great Leadership Changes Everything,” delivered by best-selling author Dr. Tim Irwin. Dr. Irwin is a leading organizational psychologist and management consultant who has helped executives at some of America’s most wellknown companies, such as IBM, Coca-Cola, Chick-fil-A, Corning, and Turner Broadcasting Systems. He is a frequent speaker on leadership development and organizational effectiveness, and guides executives to continued success while helping them avoid derailment. He is the author of three critically acclaimed books, including his latest, Impact: Great Leadership Changes Everything. His earlier books include Run with the Bulls Without Getting Trampled and Derailed: Five Lessons Learned from Catastrophic Failures of Leadership. After our networking luncheon, you’ll hear from award-winning author, international speaker, and communications expert Marsha Petrie Sue, MBA. Known as the “Muhammad Ali of senior leadership development, conflict resolution, communications, and managing change,”
Sue will deliver the presentation “Decontaminate Difficult Situations and Prepare for Change: Without Weapons or Duct Tape.” During this address, you’ll discover how to deal with toxic behaviors, situations, and attitudes; how to deliver and receive tough messages with ease; how to establish a plan to keep your best talent and reduce turnover; the stages of change and how to help employees understand these stages; and other best communication practices. Next up is the presentation “Relentless Solution Focus and Executive Toughness,” delivered by Dr. Jason Selk. Dr. Selk is one of the premier performance coaches in the United States. He utilizes his in-depth knowledge and experience of working with the world’s finest athletes, coaches, and business leaders to help individuals and organizations outperform their competition. Dr. Selk works with such clients as professional athletes in the NFL, NHL, NBA, PGA, LPGA, MLB, and NASCAR. While serving as the director of mental training for the St. Louis Cardinals, Dr. Selk helped the team win its first World Series in more than 20 years.
In our final keynote of this year’s event, you’ll hear from none other than former congressman Allen B. West, when he delivers his presentation “Workforce Development.” Lieutenant Colonel West is the third of four generations of military servicemen in his family. During his 22-year career in the United States Army, West served in several combat zones and received many honors. In November 2010, he was elected to the United States Congress, representing Florida’s 22nd District. As a member of the 112th Congress, he sat on the Small Business and Armed Services Committees and was instrumental in passage of the 2011 and 2012 National Defense Authorization Acts. He is a Fox News contributor, contributing columnist for Townhall.com, and author of Guardian of the Republic: An American Ronin’s Journey to Faith, Family and Freedom. Limited seating for the Executive Management Seminar is still available as this issue of Shot Business goes to press, so we encourage anyone interested in attending to reserve their seat now. NSSF Members may attend for $275; nonmembers can attend for $375. (SHOTShow.org)
BY ROBERT F . STAEGER
Booster Shot The risks and rewards of purchase-order financing
t’s a moment of crisis: After years of developing and marketing your product, you’ve landed a big fish—a retail giant wants to bring your product to its shelves. But it’s way more than you have on hand.
Nice as that problem is to have, it’s still a problem. You need a lot of product to fill that massive order, and you need money to manufacture it. That’s where a guy like Ned Post comes in. He’s the business development manager for outdoor markets at Gateway Trade Funding, a financial group that specializes in purchase-order financing. “A better way to say it is production financing,” says Post, since the funds Gateway provides are intended to pay for production of a specific product. Say, for example, that you’re manufacturing turkey calls. You’ve been gaining in popularity, and have a few accounts at independent stores. If Cabela’s presents
you with an order worth half a million dollars, where will you get the money to make all those calls? Every solution has a downside. Your friends and family are probably already tapped out, or nearly so. Bank loans have gotten much harder to get in recent years. And another round of fundraising will result in your selling off equity (along with your control, which is why you became an entrepreneur in the first place). Purchase-order financing isn’t for everybody. “This will only work if your margins are right,” Post says. A 20 margin is way too tight; a 50 margin, on the other hand, gives you the leeway to shave your profits to retain ownership.
“This kind of purchasing allows you to grow,” says Post. But, he cautions, it’s also not cheap. “We can take that purchase order from Cabela’s and pay for the product to be built. We will, in fact, own the product, and will turn it over to you at the time Cabela’s is ready to receive it,” says Post. So, in the turkey call example, you’ll pay your manufacturer $250,000 to produce the goods. Gateway will charge around three points on the loan for the month (as Post says, doing this isn’t cheap), so you’ll owe them $7,500 on top of that. When the product comes in, you ship it to Cabela’s with an invoice for $500,000. Then you can sell that invoice to a factor—another financial
Done correctly, a purchase-order loan allows you to raise cash quickly.
partner who will buy receivables for slightly under invoice value, depending on when payment is due—who buys it for one point (for simplicity’s sake), giving you $495,000 of the $500,000 Cabela’s owes you. Then you immediately pay off the purchase-order financing loan, leaving you $237,500 from the Cabela’s deal—money you can use to continue to grow your business. “One of the places it can work best is with military sales,” says Post. “Those contracts can be for three or four million bucks. And if you don’t want to sell your company, you’ve got to find some solution for it.” Post knows this world well; he was president of Smith Optics before the company was bought by Oakley, and he had military contracts for a variety of goggles and eyewear. It’s also an effective tool for seasonal products, where interest in a product varies depending on the time of year. Purchase-order financing helps you meet the demands of the coming season. “You’ve got to think of it as a cost of the product,” says Post. “Add it to the cost, and see if it makes sense. And the only way to do that is to stick to the timeline.” Because if you look at the purchaseorder financing as an openended loan, it’s a big mistake. “Some people start spending the money. Instead of remembering that they have to pay back this loan, they decide they need to buy just one more thing,” says Post. Suddenly that three-percent one-month loan has ballooned into 36 percent for the year. Which is why it’s crucial to keep the window of the loan as tight as possible.
THE M2.0 FAMILY JUST GOT SLIM...
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BY RICHARD MANN
Right out of the box, the Steyr Scout RFR can accept a scout or traditional riflescope or a red-dot sight, bringing a new level of versatility to the rimfire.
Totally Cool The Steyr Scout RFR takes the rimfire platform to a new level
he Scout rifle as originally conceived by Jeff Cooper was intended to be a generalpurpose rifle. In other words, a firearm not specialized for a specific pursuit, but capable of successfully tackling any problem a rifle might be asked to solve. We can all fantasize about needing such a rifle for big-game hunting and fighting bad guys, but for most of us a .22 rifle truly fits the bill. Steyr has recognized this reality and has put together what could possibly be the ideal, do-it-all rimfire rifle. It’s called the Steyr Scout RFR.
Admittedly, I was first drawn to the RFR because of my infatuation with Scout Rifles. Partly due to its similarities with the Steyr Scout Rifle, and partly due to its affordable rimfire chambering, I felt it would be the ideal understudy gun. Once I got the RFR in hand, I realized it was ideally configured to do anything a rimfire rifle could be asked to do, and do it very well. If for no other reason, that general-purpose suitability earns the rifle the Scout name. At the most basic level, Cooper felt a Scout Rifle should be a repeating rifle that’s light, compact, outfitted with a long-eye-relief scope, and chambered for a cartridge capable of handling anything short of dangerous game. The straight-pull, 10-round-magazine-fed Steyr RFR weighs 6 pounds, 4 ounces, is only 38 inches long, will accept a scout scope, and is available in .22 LR, .22 Magnum, or .17 HMR. With those cartridges, you can plink, hunt small game, or take out pests.
The straight-pull action on the Steyr Scout RFR can be operated with your fingertips. It is very fast to cycle.
The RFR has two striking features. First, the stock, which is similar in shape and configuration to the Steyr Scout Rifle, is very comfortable, with a high comb to permit an excellent cheek weld with proper eye alignment behind the optic. Second, the straight-pull action—which is manufactured by Austriabased ISSC and is known as the Biathlon or SPA (straightpull action)—is elegantly simple and twice as fast as a conventional bolt action.
The synthetic stock of the RFR shrouds the barrel forward of the receiver and has an integral Picatinny rail to allow for the mounting of an extended-eye-relief scope or a red-dot sight. However, integral to the upper receiver is a rail compatible with common rimfire scope rings. Standard Weaver bases that can be attached to this rail are shipped with the rifle. This gives the user the unmatched versatility of utilizing a combination of various sighting sys-
tems as needs dictate. Steyr wisely threaded the muzzle on this rifle, but did so at the ½-20 pitch, which is a European specification. However, ½-20 to ½-28 adaptors can be had. Another wise inclusion by Steyr was a good trigger that, even though it has somewhat of a Glock feel, breaks crisply at 2.75 pounds, with minimal overtravel. The detachable polymer magazine weighs less than 2 ounces, holds 10 rounds, and is released by depressing a lever located just forward of the trigger guard. As a point of fact, the Steyr Scout RFR is not a Scout Rifle. However, it brings true general-purpose application to the important rimfire platform. The rifle is undeniably versatile and will serve well in a wide range of applications. It also looks cool, because, well, it is cool. That will not help you shoot any better, but never underestimate the allure of coolness. SRP: $599. (steyrarms.com)
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Bushmasters, Daniel Defense, and Colt. The clerk who helped me was quick to offer me a chance to hold each rifle–-after doing due diligence in checking that the chamber was clear. He offered his thoughts on what would be good for me and offered, without my asking, what might be good for my wife as well. That was a nice touch. STORE B
LIMITED OPTIONS The next stop was on another main drag in a more upscale suburb. The layout was a bit odd, forcing customers to head to the back of the store past numerous accessories and even some empty display cases to get to the guns. The shop was clean and neat, albeit not well stocked. I saw some customers using the indoor range, but I was the only one looking at firearms for sale. The selection of ARs was small. The few offerings were primarily at the extreme high or low end. Despite the appearance and limited options, the manager was friendly and explained the differences in the various rifles that were in stock. When asked about what might be good for a female shooter, he readily offered some suggestions.
The Motor City has always been a strong market for the modern sporting riﬂe platform. Is it still?
cloudy, late-summer Saturday morning in Michigan seemed like a good day to do some firearms shopping with my wife. Given the slowdown in sales as a result of the presidential election, it was also time to see how some local outlets were doing with the modern sporting rifle platform. Detroit and the surrounding suburbs embrace the MSR for both the range and home defense. So, in a way, I was checking the pulse of this important market, as I was curious to see what was in stock and how the firearms were priced.
NICE TOUCH ➤ Located
on the somewhatinfamous “8 Mile Road,” this retailer was literally just across the street from Detroit. The
neighborhood may have seen better days, but the store was located in a new building with more than ample parking. The interior was clean and well lit, with plenty of room
to browse. The staff greeted me as I entered and were quick to see that my questions were answered. The selection of MSRs was good and included
IMMEDIATE HELP This medium-sized shop is off another high-traffic road near some light industry and automotive suppliers. Given its more remote location, it was by far the most crowded of the stores visited. And despite the fact that more than a dozen customers were browsing or getting ready to use the indoor range, I was helped immediately when I reached the counter.
Checking the Pulse in Detroit
The clerk shared his opinions right out of the gate and said that for most uses— including getting my wife more interested in the AR— most models were pretty comparable. He said that for many sport shooters, the higher-ticket offerings won’t provide a noticeable step up in performance. When asked about budget, he came in well below the prices at the other stores, and made it clear that spending a lot of money wasn’t necessary to get a quality firearm today.
He suggested a Ruger, but said the Smith & Wesson would be good as well for both my wife and me. The shop had Colts and LWRCs in stock, but again I was reminded that the money could be better spent on ammo than on brand. The shop wasn’t overly stocked with accessories, but the clerk said he could get pretty much anything I might need. In addition, this shop had a few pre-owned ARs for sale. It was also clean and well laid out, had plenty of park-
ing, and the sounds from the indoor range were minimal and not overly distracting. STORE D
RELAXED VIBE This independent, located in an industrial park, was hard to find. It was also the smallest store and the only one of the four that didn’t have an indoor range. The shop’s vibe was more relaxed than at the others, and I was actually distracted by some of the vintage used guns that were offered for
sale. However, I quickly noted that the shop had a few preowed ARs along with plenty of new merchandise. Stock included Anderson, Ruger, and Colt. The shop had a good selection of accessories, and one clerk said other items could be ordered, too. The staff was very friendly and helpful; they were also knowledgeable on a wide variety of firearms. This was the only shop of the four to also suggest AR-10s as well as AR-15s as another option.
How’d They Do? Customer Service STORE
����� The clerk greeted me promptly and was quick to help as soon as I entered the door.
���� The clerk offered opinions on each and every gun he showed me.
���� The selection was good, but there were no used firearms.
����� The staff at this store was also quick to help me as soon as I walked in.
���� The clerk knows his ARs and much more.
��� The selection was really limited to the very highend and one lower-end option, and no used ARs.
����� The clerk knew his stuff and explained options with various ARs.
���� The store had a great selection and even a couple of used ARs.
This shop was
crowded, yet the clerk was able to give me plenty of attention. ����� Two clerks actually helped me with both the ARs and other firearms that caught my eye.
����� The clerks clearly loved to talk guns, and made suggestions before I could ask the question.
��� This shop had a good selection that included some used guns, but did lack a mid-priced offering.
Very Good: ����
The clerk understood what I was seeking in an AR for both my wife and myself, and was able to direct me to what he thought could work well. He also was happy to chat and not the least bit pushy about trying to make a sale. I felt his advice was solid and honestly given.
Double Action Indoor Shooting Center & Gun shop 32411 Dequindre Rd. Madison Heights, MI 48071 248-588-4488 doubleaction.com
the fabled 1911, a design thatâ€™s more than 100 years old, remains a vital market driver. Precision rifles and tactical shotguns will also continue to attract interest. by Richard Mann
remington A lightweight 1911 Commander is a coveted carry pistol, and now Remington has a new take on this classic.
For what seems like a long time now, new rifle introductions at the SHOT Show have been dominated by variations on the AR15/ AR10 platform. But times are changing, to paraphrase one of Bob Dylan’s most famous lines. For 2018, we continue to see line extensions to accommodate the 6.5 Creedmoor, but we’re also seeing the emergence of a new trend— dedicated long-range precision sport and hunting rifles. Yes, there are still a few new MSR S that will draw intense interest, but for the first time in a decade, the new rifles at SHOT are a balanced lot.
auto-ordnance The Deluxe model Thompson in 9mm comes with one 20-round stick magazine and a 16.5-inch barrel.
model Thompson in 9mm. It comes with one 20-round stick magazine and a 16.5inch barrel. SRP: $1,364. (auto-ordnance.com)
Auto Ordnance History was made in 1915 when John T. Thompson introduced the first portable handheld automatic weapon, commonly referred to as the Tommy Gun. Kahr is proud to introduce the Deluxe
Bergara The HMR Pro builds on the legacy of the 2017 HMR. It provides a multitude of upgrades to include a Cerakote stainless-steel action and barrel with a threaded
muzzle and a TriggerTech primary trigger. The HMR Pro is also shipped with an accuracy-qualified sub-MOA target. Weights range from 9.2 to 10.10 pounds, and it is available in .223 Remington with a 1:8 twist, .22/250 Remington with a 1:9 twist, 6mm and 6.5mm Creedmoor with a 1:8 twist, and .308 Winchester with a 1:10 twist. SRP: $1,695. (bergarausa. com)
Browning The new X-Bolt Pro and X-Bolt Pro Long Range models feature an exclusive Generation 2 carbon-fiber stock with a palm swell. Barrels and receivers are stainless-steel-coated in Cerakote burnt bronze, and the bolt body and handle have spiral fluting. Rifles are hand-chambered and come standard with a target crown and threaded muzzle. The rifles can be had with either a 22or 26-inch barrel (the outlier is the .300 WSM, which comes with a 23-inch barrel) in 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5 Creedmoor, .308 Winchester, .300 WSM, 26 Nosler, .270 Winchester, .30/06 Springfield, 7mm Remington Magnum, 28 Nosler, and .300 Winchester Magnum. SRP: $2,069.99-$2,129.99, X-Bolt Pro; $2,099.99-$2,179.99, X-Bolt Pro Long Range. The X-Bolt Hell’s Canyon Speed Long Range McMillan
bergara The HMR Pro options include a Cerakoted stainless-steel action and a barrel with a threaded muzzle.
rifle features a McMillan Game Scout stock with aluminum pillars, a vertical pistol grip, and a medium-width forend. It has a Cerakote burnt bronze finish and a 26-inch, fluted, free-floating, hand-chambered barrel with a muzzle brake. The stock sports an A-TACS AU Camo, Dura-Touch Armor Coat finish. A 20-MOA Picatinny rail is standard. Available in 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5 Creedmoor, .300 WSM, 26 Nosler, 7mm Remington Magnum, 28 Nosler, and .300 Winchester Magnum. SRP: $2,129.99-$2,199.99. The X-Bolt Micro Composite will give smallerstature shooters the option of a rifle with a shorter length of pull. It features a receiver and barrel in matte blue and is available in .243 Winchester, 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5 Creedmoor, 7mm-08 Remington, and .308 Winchester. SRP: $939.99. (browning.com)
Bushmaster The new 450 Bushmaster SD Rifle has a 20-inch barrel,
an R25-styled stock with a Hogue grip, an ALG Defense trigger, an AAS Square Drop Handguard, and a muzzle brake. It comes with a fiveround magazine and is chambered for the 450 Bushmaster, a cartridge seeing renewed interest in 2018. SRP: $1,299. The ACR SBR, chambered for the 5.56 NATO, comes with a 10.5-inch, 4150 FNCtreated, 1:7 twist barrel. Other features include an AAC Blackout flash-hider, a collapsible folding stock, and a tri-rail handguard. SRP: $2,249. The Bushmaster Minimalist SD Carbine will be offered in 5.56 NATO and 300 AAC Blackout. It has a mil-spec upper and lower receiver, an AAC Square Drop Handguard, a lightweight FNC 1:8 twist barrel, a milspec mission-first minimalist stock and grip, and an ALG Defense fire control group. SRP: $1,169. Now, how about something really big? The BA50 is chambered for the .50 BMG and has a Lothar-Walther 30-inch barrel. The bolt is on
the left side of the action, and cartridges eject from the right, after feeding from a 10-round box magazine. It’s fitted with a Magpul PRS stock and an AAC Cyclops brake. It’s not cheap—big guns never are. SRP: $5,657. (bushmaster.com)
CMMG CMMG’s MkW Anvil is a mid-sized AR rifle platform uniquely engineered to easily handle cartridges with large case diameters and high bolt thrust. Each new MkW Anvil ships with one 10-round magazine, and barrels have a 1:8 twist. CMMG also is offering 6.5 Grendel upper receiver groups for Anvils in .458 SOCOM. SRP: $1,049.95, uppers; $1,999.95, rifles. The MkG45 Guard is an MSR chambered for the .45 Auto. It’s offered in five configurations, with either 8- or 16-inch barrels. All operate on
browning The X-Bolt Micro Composite gives smaller-stature shooters the option of a rifle with a shorter length of pull.
cmmg The MkW Anvil handles cartridges with large case diameters. This year the 6.5 Grendel joins the lineup.
CMMGâ€™s patent-pending Radial Delayed Blowback system and feed from Glock magazines. SRP: $1,299.95$1,399.95. (cmmginc.com)
CVA With the new Optima V2 LR, CVA brings long-range performance to a more affordable price point. The gun employs the same longrange-oriented concepts as the top-selling Accura V2LR, combining a velocity-enhancing longer barrel with the superior stability of a thumbhole stock. It features a 28-inch barrel, and like all CVA muzzleloaders, it has the exclusive Quick Release Breech Plug. The thumbhole stock is also 100 percent ambidextrous. The V2 LR is 43 inches long and weighs 7.65 pounds. (cva.com)
CZ USA For 2018, CZ is introducing a left-hand 557. It will be available in .30/06 Springfield (standard action) and .308 Winchester (short action). The .30/06 version has a hinged floorplate, and the .308 feeds from a detachable box magazine. Both have 24-inch, cold-hammer-forged
and lapped barrels. SRP: $865. (cz-usa.com)
DPMS DPMS now has the GII Hunter in .243 Winchester and .260 Remington. Both feature 20-inch Teflon-coated barrels, threaded muzzles, carbon-fiber free-floating handguards, twostage triggers, Magpul MOE stocks, Hogue grips, and an enhanced shell deflector. The GII Compact Hunter is chambered for the .243 Winchester. This minimalized semi-auto rifle features a 16-inch Teflon-coated barrel, a threaded muzzle, a carbonfiber, free-floating handguard, a two-stage trigger, a B5 Sopmod Stock, a Hogue grip, and an enhanced shell deflector. Another addition to the GII line is the AP4 OR (Optics Ready). This GII has an improved upper receiver optimized for left-hand shooters, and a standard, plain-steel single-rail gas block. SRP: $1,249. DPMS did not forget it makes AR15s. The new MOE SL Carbine is available with black or flat dark earth Magpul MOE SL furniture. Itâ€™s chambered in 5.56 NATO and comes with a 16-inch chrome-lined barrel with a
cva The Optima V2 LR features a 28-inch barrel and a thumbhole stock designed to enhance long-range performance.
1:7 twist. Backup sights and an AAC Blackout flash-hider are standard. SRP: $1,099.
nickel-boron-coated bolt. It weighs 9.5 pounds. SRP: $995.95. (ershawbarrels.
America’s largest independent manufacturer of gun barrels is now offering the new Mark X bolt-action rifle. Consumers can order online and choose between barrel lengths from 16.25 to 26 inches. They can also select one of 90 chamberings in calibers from .17 through .458. The highly acclaimed AccuTrigger is standard, but a Timney is an option. This is a custom, madeto-order rifle. SRP: $1,399. The company now also offers a smaller, lighter, and more affordable AR-10. The ERS-10’s upper and lower receivers are machined from 7075-T6 aluminum forgings. It comes standard with a Shaw muzzle brake, a 15-inch floating handguard, and a
With what seems like an unbridled effort to take over the rifle world, Mossberg has introduced another variation of the MVP. The MVP Precision is a tactical rifle sporting an all-new chassis and a LUTH-AR MBA-3 adjustable stock. Every rifle comes with an LBA trigger, and 24- or 20-inch threaded and freefloated medium bull barrels are standard. A Picatinny rail, an oversize bolt handle, and a Magpul MOE grip are included. Vortex combo packages will include the Viper HS-T riflescope, and available chamberings include the 6.5 Creedmoor and 7.62 NATO. The Patriot line continues to expand. For 2018, you’ll see it in 6.5 Creedmoor in the
top-of-the-line model—the Revere. This rifle features a 2.0 Grade European walnut stock and a rosewood forend tip and grip cap. SRP: $823. The Patriot Cerakote is also new. Cerakote is a polymer-ceramic coating that protects metal surfaces, and this Cerakoted Patriot will be offered with a synthetic black stock in six popular chamberings, including .243 Winchester, 6.5 Creedmoor, .270 Winchester, 7mm-08 Remington, .308 Winchester, and .30/06 Springfield. To keep things on the cool side, Mossberg is offering three new rifles specifically intended to visually please; all are finished in Muddy Girl Serenity camo. This new camo has a dynamic combination of colors and natural elements for a sharp look that will likely appeal to anyone wanting some additional, eye-catching flair from their rifle. The list includes a Patriot Super
e.r. shaw The Mark X bolt-action rifle has 28 chamberings, ranging from .17 through .458.
Bantam in .243 Winchester, a Blaze autoloading rifle in .22 LR, and an International 715T semi-auto rifle in .22 LR. (mossberg.com)
Proof Research The new Switch is easily user-modified to accommodate many cartridges. It comes standard with a freefloating, cut-rifled Proof Research carbon-fiber barrel in either .223 Remington, 6mm and 6.5mm Creedmoor, .260 Remington, or .308 Winchester. It incorporates a Savage-style barrel to allow for user-conversion to virtually any short-action caliber. SRP: $3,995. (proofresearch.com)
Remington The new 700 MTD Tactical Chassis rifle is available with a 24- or 26-inch barrel and is chambered for the .308 Winchester, .300 Winchester Magnum, or .338 Lapua Magnum. It has a stainlesssteel-barreled action, a Magpul PRS II adjustable stock, an oversize bolt handle, and an AAC muzzle brake, and ships in a hard case. SRP: $3,500. The SS 5R Black Cerakote is built on an HS Precision stock. It has a stainless-steel-
barreled action, and the 5R rifled barrel has the distinctive LTR-style fluting with a black Cerakote finish. A threaded muzzle and X Mark Pro adjustable trigger are standard. Available in .308 Winchester with a 20- or 24-inch barrel, .300 Winchester Magnum with a 24-inch barrel, and 6.5 Creedmoor with a 24-inch barrel. SRP: $1,250. There is also a non-Cerakote version in .223 Remington. SRP: $1,150. (remington.com)
Rise Armament The 1121XR rifle in .308 Winchester was designed for shooters seeking more out of a heavy-caliber, gas-driven gun. It features the RA-535 trigger, guaranteed sub-MOA precision, a 20-inch 416R stainless-steel barrel, precision-machined 7075 aluminum billet receivers, a Magpul PRS stock, and a smooth Cerakote finish. It weighs 9.5 pounds and ships in a hard case with two magazines. SRP: $2,449. (risearmament.com)
Savage Since its introduction in 1958, the Savage Model 110 has served hunters and shoot-
ers well as an economical, hard-hitting, accurate rifle. Now itâ€™s even better with the new Model 110 Big Game and Specialty series. These revamped rifles have received a fresh look and a full complement of new and improved features. Customized performance is the hallmark of the redesign, and these new rifles solve the three main issues shooters usually pay a gunsmith to address: fit, trigger pull, and bedding. The all-new user-adjustable AccuFit system/stock is the key. It allows shooters to customize length of pull and comb height. Inserts included with the rifle can be installed in seconds with a Phillips screwdriver. The new AccuStock also has a rigid chassis embedded in the stock. Combine these customlike features with the standard adjustable AccuTrigger, and the 110s become affordable custom rifles, right out of the box. To help bring all this wonderfulness to the consumer, Savage has a full line of revamped 110s to choose from, covering everything from general-purpose to niche offerings. The Savage 110 Storm features a detachable-box magazine, a stainless-steel barrel, and a gray synthetic stock. It is available in a plethora of
mossberg The MVP Precision tactical rifle sports an all-new chassis and a LUTH-AR MBA-3 adjustable stock.
cartridges, from .223 Remington to .338 Winchester Magnum. SRP: $849. The 110 Engage Hunter comes out of the box with a mounted and bore-sighted Bushnell Engage riflescope. SRP: $629. The 110 Predator is a Realtree Max 1 camo version chambered for six coyote-killing cartridges. All feature 24-inch barrels and a four-round detachable magazine. SRP: $799. For long-range 110 Savage excitement, there’s the Long Range Hunter. It comes with a 26-inch barrel and is chambered for the 6.5 Creedmoor, .260 Remington, .308 Winchester, .300 WSM, .338 Federal, 6.5x284 Norma, 7mm Remington Magnum, .300 Winchester Magnum, and the .338 Lapua Magnum. SRP: $1,099; $1,298, Lapua. If you want the ideal general-purpose 110, there’s the 110 Scout. Configured to emulate Jeff Cooper’s concept, this 110 has a 16.5-inch barrel, a 10-shot detachable magazine, open sights, and an extended eye-relief scope rail. Chambered for the .223 Remington, .308 Winchester, .338 Federal, or 450 Bushmaster. SRP: $815. Other specific-purpose new 110s include the 23-inch-barreled 110 Bear Hunter ($999), the
26-inch-barreled 110 Varmint ($638), the 20-inch-barreled 110 Hog Hunter ($594), and the wicked 110 Wolverine in 450 Bushmaster ($899). The 10/110 Stealth Evolution chassis rifle is chambered for six distance-delivering cartridges, including the 6mm Creedmoor. The rifle blends pinpoint precision with torture-tested toughness, and pairs a heavy fluted barrel, blueprinted 10/110 action, 5R rifling, and an AccuTrigger, with a monolithic aluminum chassis finished in rugged bronze Cerakote. SRP: $1,799$2,149. (savagearms.com)
Steyr The Zephyr II is Steyr’s new smallbore rifle. It features a classic European walnut stock with a Bavarian cheekpiece and fish-scale-pattern checkering, and the Steyr Mannlicher bolt handle and tang safety. Available in .17 HMR, .22 LR, and .22 WMR, the Zephyr II has a cold-hammer-forged 19.7inch barrel, with an overall length of 35.2 inches. The rifle weighs 5.8 pounds. SRP: $995. The Pro THB (Tactical Heavy Barrel) offers extreme accuracy at an extremely affordable price, and it’s a complement to Steyr’s traditional platforms. It has a dura-
savage The 110 Storm features a detachable box magazine and a stainless-steel barrel in a wide variety of calibers.
weatherby The Mark V line features five new rifles, including the Camilla Deluxe in five chamberings.
ble synthetic stock with removable spacers in the buttstock to adjust length of pull. It also has a cold-hammerforged, 16-, 20-, or 26-inch threaded heavy barrel, finished with Steyr’s durable Mannox coating. Chambered for the .308 Winchester, the magazine is the standard two-position five-round detachable box, with a 10-round conversion kit available. SRP: $1,265. (steyrarms.com)
Weatherby The Mark V line includes five new rifles. The Camilla Deluxe has been designed for female hunters with input from the Women of Weatherby team. It weighs 6.5 pounds and has an AA-grade Claro walnut stock. A slim forearm, a narrow-radius pistol grip, and a high comb contribute to the fit a woman wants. Five chamberings are available: .240 Weatherby Magnum, .270 Winchester, 6.5 Creedmoor, .308 Winchester, and .30/06 Springfield. The Mark V KCR features a 26-inch, No. 3 contour custom masterpiece barrel from Krieger. It is available in .257, 6.5-300, .300, and .30-378 Weatherby Magnum cartridges, and includes an Accubrake to reduce felt recoil by up to 50 percent. An LXX trigger, oversize bolt knob, composite Monte Carlo stock, and flat dark earth and graphite black Cerakote finish round out the features on this rifle. The Altitude weighs 5.75
pounds with the six-lug action, 6.75 pounds with the nine-lug magnum version. It features a lightweight Monte Carlo stock with an aluminum bedded block, a fluted stainless-steel barrel, Kryptek Altitude camo, and a Tungsten Cerakote finish. The Altitude is available in .240, .257, .270, 7mm, and .300 Weatherby Magnums, as well as 6.5 Creedmoor, .270 Winchester, .308 Winchester, and .30/06 Springfield. The new Outfitter Mark V rifles have a flat dark earth Cerakote finish and boast a carbon-fiber Monte Carlo stock. The FDE RC model is Range Certified, and Adam Weatherby signs each range certificate. It is available in .240, .257, 6.5-300, .270, 7mm, and .300 Weatherby Magnums and in 6.5 Creedmoor, .270 Winchester, .308 Winchester, and .30/06 Springfield. Weatherby has also expanded the Vanguard line to include the 6.5-300 Weatherby Magnum cartridge and the Safari, which is offered in .30/06 Springfield and .375 H&H. (weatherby.com)
Winchester The new XPC is a chassis rifle with a quick-cycling 60-degree bolt with plenty of clearance for large scopes. The XPC comes with an optic rail, a button-rifled free-floating chrome-moly barrel, a target crown, a threaded muzzle, and a nickel-Teflon and
Perma-Cote black finish. It has a MagPul buttstock and grip, and is available in .243 Winchester and 6.5 Creedmoor with a 24-inch barrel, and in .308 Winchester with a 20-inch barrel. SRP: $1,599.99. The new XPR Sporter features a Grade I walnut stock and an Inflex Technology recoil pad. Other features include the MOA trigger, Perma-Cote matte black metal surfaces, a detachablebox magazine, a steel recoil lug, and a two-position thumb safety. It’s available in a variety of cartridges, from .243 Winchester to .338 Winchester Magnum, with barrel lengths from 22 to 26 inches. SRP: $599.99. A new 1873 Carbine model will feature a classic carbinestyle forearm with a blued barrel band, a blued carbine strap buttplate, and a blued saddle ring. The stock and forearm are satin-finished walnut, and this lever gun comes standard with a ladderstyle rear sight. It’s available in .357 Magnum/.38 Special, .44/40 Winchester, and .45 Colt, with a 20-inch barrel. SRP: $1,299.99. The Model 1892 Carbine has the same features as the old 1873 Carbine, but with a semi-buckhorn rear sight and Marble Arms gold-bead front sight. It is available in .357 Magnum, .44 Remington Magnum, .44/40 Winchester, and .45 Colt, with a 20-inch barrel. SRP: $1,069.99. (winchesterguns.com)
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Precision rifles and compact handguns seem to be all anyone wants to talk about these days. Although all the hustle and bustle is happening in holsters and at 1,000 yards, there are still shooters quietly going about their business, shouldering shotguns and knocking things out of the sky. Those folks can enter 2018 with eager anticipation because manufacturers have not forgotten them. And, for those who think of a shotgun only as a fighting firearm, you have some new tactical scatterguns to consider.
Browning Browningâ€™s High Grade Program is moving into its sixth year with limited-production Citori 725 Grade VI Field Model 12- and 20-gauge shotguns. The gold-enhanced receiver engravings and Grade V/VI walnut stocks exude class and workmanship. The receiver has a silver-nitride finish and a Fire Lite Mechanical trigger system. Offered with 26- or 28-inch barrels, these new models are supplied with a canvas/distressed leather fitted case. SRP: $5,999.99. The new Citori 725 Golden Clays Trap 12-gauge over/ under features gold-accented engraving on the right, left, and bottom of the receiver, and a silver-nitride finish. The stock and forearm are grade V/VI walnut with a gloss-oil finish, close-radius pistol grip, and palm swell. A Pro Fit Adjustable Monte Carlo comb and adjustable GraCoil Recoil Reduction System, with a Graco buttpad plate that
CZ-usa The Reaper Magnum lets a hunter choose a tight choke for long shots and an open choke for closer shots.
browning The 12-gauge Citori 725 Golden Clays Trap has an adjustable comb and a buttpad plate.
adjusts for angle and location, are standard. Available with 30or 32-inch barrels, Browning has introduced precision-rifle adjustability into the shotgun world. SRP: $5,739.99, The Citori CXS and Citori CXT Adjustable Comb models are multipurpose over/under 12-gauge shotguns for various target-shooting endeavors. The CXS features a blued finish receiver with gold-accented engravings. The ported barrels are topped with a floating rib, and the stock and forearm are gloss-finished Grade II American walnut, with an adjustable comb and Schnabelstyle forearm. The CSX is intended as a crossover shotgun for hunting, sporting clays, and skeet. SRP: $2,539.99. The new CXT has a blued receiver with gold-accented engravings. The barrels feature a high-post floating rib and ventilated side and top ribs. The stock and forearm are gloss-finished Grade II American walnut, with an adjustable comb and semibeavertail forearm with finger grooves. Intended for trap, the CXT is supplied with three Midas Grade choke tubes with 30- or 32-inch barrels. SRP: $2,599.99. Also new is the Silver Field Mossy Oak Shadow Grass Blades 12-gauge semi-auto
shotgun. It has an aluminumalloy receiver and a black/charcoal bi-tone finish. This 3½-inch gas-operated autoloader also features a stock and forearm in Mossy Oak Shadow Grass Blades camo. Available with either a 26- or 28-inch barrel. SRP: $1,139.99. (browning.com)
CZ USA One of CZ-USA’s fanciest over/under shotguns, the Supreme Field, features Grade III wood and copious amounts of hand-engraved scrollwork. Its polished-nickel receiver features auto ejectors and a mechanical single-selectable trigger. Five extended chokes are included. SRP: $1,699. CZ-USA’s most affordable over/under shotgun gains two sub-gauge variants for 2018. Identical to the larger shotguns, but in 28-gauge and .410-bore, these diminutive shotguns are built on steel CNC actions, have a mid-rib, and are clad in Turkish walnut stocks. SRP: $679. CZ’s 3½-inch Swamp Magnum might make a rifleman want to become a shotgunner. It looks mean and serious, and now with shorter 26-inch barrels and extended choke options, the Reaper Magnum gives the turkey
mossberg The affordable Maverick line is offering three new models this year.
tristar The Viper 410 has a Turkish walnut stock, a fiber-optic front sight, and a bronze finish.
hunter the ability to choose a tight choke for long shots and an open choke for closer shots. With a drilled-andtapped top Picatinny-style rail, mounting an optic is easy. The polymer stocks are clad in Realtree Xtra Green to help them blend in the world of the turkey. SRP: $959. Given the huge popularity of its Hammer Coach, CZ-USA thought it time to introduce a hammerless version. Built on the Sharp-Tail platform, the Sharp-Tail Coach is a single-trigger coach gun with 20-inch cylinder bore barrels. It is available in 12- or 20-gauge. SRP: $959. (cz-usa. com)
Mossberg When the BATFE confirmed the 590 Shockwave does not fall under NFA restrictions and requires no tax stamp, the world of shotguns changed and a floodgate of interest
opened. The Shockwave comes with a 14-inch heavywalled barrel and has a 5+1 capacity. New options include a 20-gauge version and a flat dark earth Cerakote finish, and a 12-gauge JIC (Just In Case) model that comes with a water-resistant storage/carry tube. SRP: $455. Standard features of the Mossberg 930 shotgun include a smooth-operating dual-gasvent system, a drilled-andtapped receiver, an ambidextrous safety, and a stock-drop spacer system. The 930 handles 2 ¾- and 3-inch shotshells with ease, and the new versatile 26-inch-barreled Bottomland model comes with an expanded choke tube set for both turkey and waterfowl. SRP: $560. The 28-inch-barreled black synthetic stock version makes a great choice for upland and waterfowl hunting. SRP: $560. The 835 Ulti-Mag’s standard features include dual extractors, positive steel-to-steel lock-
up, twin action bars, an ambidextrous safety, and a clean-out magazine tube cap. The 835 Ulti-Mag shotguns handle all shotshells, including powerful magnum loads, and the overbored 26-inch barrels provide reduced recoil and uniform, dense patterns. New for 2018 are a standard matte blue with a black synthetic stock version and a Bottomland-finished model. SRP: $604. All SA-20 and SA-28 International Bantam shotguns come with a 12.5-inch length of pull and are popular with young and small-statured shooters. For 2018, Mossberg has three new offerings. The Walnut Youth comes in 28- and 20-gauge and has a 28-inch barrel with a ventilated rib. It weighs only 6.25 pounds. SRP: $570. The Black Synthetic Youth is now available in 28-gauge and also has a 24-inch ventilated rib barrel. It weighs only 5.5 pounds. SRP: $674. Known as the workingman’s
shotgun, Mossberg has three new Mavericks from which to choose. First is the six-shot Cylinder-bore 18.5-inch-barreled standard model with a flat dark earth stock. Next is a similar eight-shot version, but with a 20-inch barrel. And finally, there’s the six-shot, 18.5inch model that comes with an ATI ShotForce folding stock, and weighs only 6 pounds. SRP: $296. Mossberg is treating those who like a little flair in their firearms with several shotguns finished in the newest Muddy Girl camo pattern. There’s the Model 500 20-gauge Super Bantam, with its adjustable length-of-pull system and 22-inch ventilated-rib barrel. And there’s the 510 Mini-Super Bantam, with the same length of pull adjustability, but with an 18.5-inch .410-bore or 20-gauge barrel. (mossberg. com)
Rock Island Armory Rock Island Armory is rolling out 20 new shotguns this year. They include one pumpaction, four break-actions, and 15 semi-auto variants. The pump is an 18.6-inch-barreled smoothbore slug gun with a synthetic stock. It weighs 6.39
pounds and has a 5+1 capacity. Break-actions include a 20-inch-barreled single-shot at 6.18 pounds, an over/under 28-inch-barreled 12-gauge at 7.18 pounds, a similar over/ under Plus with a handengraved receiver, and an over/under Competition. All 12-gauge models accept 3-inch shells. The semi-auto magazinefed VR-60 is now offered in a plethora of colors, from tactical black and sand to rosy red and combinations. This wicked-looking shotgun resembles the AR in profile and weighs about 8 pounds, depending on variation. It will handle 3-inch shells and has an overall length of 39 inches. (armscor.com)
TriStar Notable features on the new Viper 410 shotgun include a beautiful Turkish walnut stock, a fiber-optic front sight, and a bronze finish. Out of the box, it weighs only 5.7 pounds. (tristararms.com)
Winchester Winchester expanded the Super X4 semi-auto shotgun line to include the SX4 NWTF Cantilever Turkey model. It
comes with a 24-inch barrel and a Weaver-style cantilever rail that makes it easy to attach an electronic sight or scope. This 3½-inch model features a synthetic stock and forearm with full coverage in the non-glare Mossy Oak Obsession. A Truglo fiberoptic front sight and adjustable rear sight are standard, as is an Extra-Full turkey choke tube. SRP: $1,069.99. Along those same lines is the new SX4 Cantilever Buck 12-gauge 3-inch semi-auto. It has a synthetic stock and forearm in a non-glare matte black finish. The 22-inch rifled barrel also features a Weaverstyle cantilever rail, and a Truglo fiber-optic front sight and adjustable rear are standard. The receiver and barrel are finished in matte black. SRP: $959.99. The new SX4 Universal Hunter 12-gauge 3 ½-inch semi-auto will also feature a synthetic stock and forearm, but with full coverage in Mossy Oak Break-Up Country. The receiver is drilled and tapped to accept scope bases, and it is available with a 24-, 26-, or 28-inch barrel and a Truglo Long Beard fiber-optic front sight. SRP: $1,069.99. (winchesterguns.com)
winchester The Super X4 semi-auto shotgun line now includes the sX4 NWTF Cantilever Turkey model.
In an age when everything plastic rules, a handgun made of steel with a design more than 100 years old still drives the market. We are talking, of course, of the fabled 1911, and a third of the new guns that follow are based on this legendary platform. That’s not to say that there is no interest in itty-bitty pocket pistols, and it’s clear the revolver is not the antiquated firearm many assume. In fact, when it comes to handguns, 2018 is a good mix of old, new, plastic, and steel, with a wheel or two thrown in for good measure.
Browning browning The Buck Mark Plus Lite Fluted UFX is a suppressor-ready model.
Browning continues to add appealing variations to its reduced-size 1911 lineup. The Black Label 1911-380 Pro Stainless is available in full-size and compact versions, with an accessory rail option. They feature a matte-black composite frame with a machined 7075 aluminum subframe and slide rails. The slide is stainless steel, and the barrel has a rust-resistant satin-silver finish. Grips are G-10 composite, and the sights are threedot combat or night sights dovetailed into the slide. Supplied with two 8-round magazines, the full-size model has a 4¼-inch barrel. The barrel on the compact model is 3 ⅝ inches. SRP: $799.99 to $909.99.
Here’s a cool take on a .22LR trail gun. It’s called the Buck Mark Camper UFX Suppressor Ready, and it features a 6-inch matte-finished tapered bull barrel that’s threaded for a suppressor. Additional features include Ultra FX ambidextrous grips, a Pro-Target rear sight, a Truglo/Marble Arms fiberoptic front sight, and a Picatinny rail for optics. SRP: $499.99. Another suppressor-ready Buck Mark is the Plus Lite Fluted UFX Suppressor Ready model. It has a 5 ½-inch steel barrel, with an alloy sleeve and fluting in a matte blue finish. The Lite UFX comes with a threadprotector, Pro-Target rear sights, and a Truglo/Marble Arms fiber-optic front sight. The grips are Ultragrip FX ambidextrous. SRP: $619.99. (browning.com)
Bushmaster Just when you thought interest in the AR platform had subsided, there are AR pistols to keep it going. For 2018, Bushmaster has the SD Pistol, which is chambered for the 5.56 NATO or 300 Blackout. It has a mil-spec upper and lower, an AAC square-drop handguard, an AAC Blackout flash hider, an SB Tactical Arms brace, a Hogue Overmold grip, and an ALG Defense fire-control group. SRP: $1,399. (bushmaster.com)
Cimarron The Cimarron Bad Boy is a .44 Magnum revolver built on a pre-war frame, with an Army-style grip and an octagonal barrel. It’s ideal for hunting or hitting steel, or for backwoods trapping, or living off the grid.
browning The Black Label 1911-380 Pro Stainless is available in full-size and compact versions, with an accessory rail option.
Features include a blue finish with smooth walnut grips and a flattop frame with adjustable sights. Available with a 6- or 8-inch octagonal barrel. SRP: $687.70 Also new from Cimarron is the 1851 Navy cap-and-ball sixshooter replica known as the Percussion Peacemaker. This revolver brings you back to the mythic West, with beautiful laser engraving on a case-hardened frame. It’s available in .44 or .36 caliber with a 7½-inch octagonal barrel. SRP: $422.50. (cimarron-firearms. com)
CZ USA CZ has added two new variants to the P10C line of polymer-framed pistols. Joining the Urban Grey series of pistols, one new variant wears a mix of flat dark earth and light gray colors. It also has suppressor-height night sights, a suppressor-ready barrel
threaded ½x28, and an extended base pad that boosts capacity to 17+1. The CZ P-10 Urban Grey Suppressor Ready is available in 9mm Luger. SRP: $549. The other variant is the CZ P-10 C FDE White Nitride 9mm pistol. The white nitride used on this slide offers the same hardy surface protection as the standard black nitride. Combined with a flat dark earth frame, this two-toned pistol is affordable and classy. SRP: $539. Now available with an OD green frame and a set of metal night sights, the new CZ P-09 full-size and compact variants carry all the features that make the P-09/P-07 series pistols desirable. SRP: $539. For those wanting a braced pistol package out of the box, CZ-USA has added the SB Tactical folding arm brace to the Scorpion pistol. This pistol is ideal for those who
cimarron The 1851 Navy cap-andball six-shooter replica comes in .44 or .36 caliber.
CZ-USA For those wanting a braced pistol package out of the box, CZ-USA has added the SB Tactical folding arm brace to the Scorpion pistol. This pistol is ideal for those who own a 9mm suppressor because most 9mm cans fit inside the carbine forend. already own a 9mm suppressor because most 9mm cans fit inside the carbine forend. SRP: $999. A blue/gray and OD green color variant was also added to the Scorpion EVO 3 S1 9mm line. SRP: $899. The Cadet kit, which allows a 9mm pistol to fire .22LR ammo, is an overlooked item in the CZ line. These conversion kits are amazingly accurate and easy to install. Now CZ has two that are new. One is for the longer frame of the Shadow 2, the other is for SP-01 models with a full-length frame.
magnum research The Desert Eagle series gets a classic case-hardened finish on .44 Magnum, .50 AE, and .357 Magnum models.
Both come with two 10-round magazines. SRP: $431. (cz-usa.com)
Dan Wesson For 2018, Dan Wesson increased its line of 1911 handguns by 10. The most exceptional is the 50th Anniversary Limited Edition. This glorious 1911, chambered for the .45 Auto, is adorned with engravings on the frame and slide and has a set of ivory-looking G10 grips embossed with Dan Wesson logo medallions. Produced in limited numbers, this is an all-stainless gun, finished in a high-polish nitride. SRP: $2,999. The new Vigil series of 1911s are built on checkered aluminum frames with stainless-steel slides. They offer an affordable entry into the Dan Wesson line of handguns. With four variants, the Vigil can be had in sizes from CCO to government, and in suppressor-ready form. A tritium front sight, serrated rear, rounded butt, and Shadow cocobolo grips are standard. SRP: $1,298.99-
$1,397. Suppressor-ready pistols are an industry trendâ€”one that Dan Wesson has fully embraced. The Wraith is a threaded-barrel governmentsize 1911 available in .45 Auto, 10mm, or 9mm and clad in a distressed version of the Duty finish. High night sights are standard. SRP: $2,077-$2,375. The distinctive Discretion 1911 gets a commander-sized little brother for 2018. The Discretion is a purpose-built suppressor host, and the lightening cuts in the slide help negate some of the weight of the can. SRP: $2,142. The bull-barreled officersized 1911 known as the ECO now can be had in an OD green variant. SRP: $1,662. There is also a parkerized variant of both the Government and Commander DW A2 pistols (SRP: $1,363), and a distressed 9mm and .45 version of the Specialist (SRP: $2,012). (danwessonfirearms. com)
Magnum Research Since 1985, Magnum Research has diligently worked to introduce new products to its iconic popculture Desert Eagle series. New for 2018 is a classic case-hardened finish on the .44 Magnum, .50 AE, and .357 Magnum Desert Eagles. Each features a 6-inch barrel, and the case-hardened finish is protected with a clear coat. SRP: $2,278. (magnum research.com)
Nighthawk Custom Firearms The new 6-inch Echelon 1911 is touted as the pinnacle of modern manufacturing technology. Guns in this plat-
form with 6-inch slides are notoriously heavy and difficult to make run consistently using lighter-recoiling 9mm ammunition, but Nighthawk engineers worked for two years to find the perfect balance that will allow 115-grain round ball and +P ammo to function perfectly. The Echelon has a single side safety and 10+1 capacity. It weighs 43.8 ounces and has an overall length of 9.65 inches. (nighthawkcustom. com)
Remington It appears Remington is after the lion’s share of the 1911 market, as it is introducing nine new models. The R1 1911 Limited 9/40/45 Double Stack, which has a capacity of 19, 18, and 16, respectively, is a 41-ounce 1911 with a 5-inch barrel, wide cocking serrations, an LPA adjustable rear sight, a fiber-optic front sight, an extended beavertail, and VZ G10 grips. It comes with two stainless-steel magazines. SRP: $1,399. For those who really like the features of the Limited Double Stack but do not like the wide grip, there’s the 38-ounce R1 1911 Limited 9/40/45 Single Stack. The features are the same, but the capacity and price are less. SRP: $1,250. If you have a little more change in your pocket going jing-a-ling-a-ling, and if you want something a bit more refined for racing, there’s the R1 1911 Limited 9/40/45 Tomasie Custom. These pistols have 5-inch barrels, wide cocking serrations, an LPA adjustable rear sight, an extended beavertail, an adjustable skeletonized trigger, VZ G10 grips, and a stainless-steel slide and frame. Weight is 41 ounces. Each is also inspected
and test-fired by action-pistol champion Travis Tomasie. SRP: $1,650. In the fighting-pistol category, Remington is offering the R1 1911 Tactical .45 ACP Double Stack. It has a 5-inch barrel, wide slide serrations, Trijicon sights, an extended beavertail, a PVD DLC finish, VZ G10 grips, an accessory rail, and a capacity of 15+1 rounds. SRP: $1,275. It’s also available with a threaded muzzle, and a single-stack version retails for $25 less. The R1 1911 Enhanced Double Stack 15 .45 features a 15-round double-stack magazine, a 5-inch stainless match barrel, adjustable rear sights, a fiber-optic front sight, VZ G10 grips, an adjustable trigger, an extended beavertail grip safety, a skeletonized hammer, and front and rear cocking serrations. SRP: $999. A lightweight 1911 Commander is a coveted carry pistol, and now Remington has introduced its take on this classic. The R1 1911 Ultralight Commander has an aluminum frame, weighs 31 ounces, and has a 4.25-inch stainless-steel match barrel, an adjustable rear sight, a fiber-optic front sight, laminate grips, an adjustable trigger, an extended beavertail, front and rear cocking serrations, and a skeletonized hammer. SRP: $849. For those seeking a bit more refinement, the R1 1911 Executive Commander just might be for you. It has an aluminum frame, a 3 ½-inch stainless-steel match bull barrel, Trijicon front and rear sights, a bobtail frame and mainspring housing, G10 grips, an adjustable trigger, an extended-grip safety, and a skeletonized hammer. It weighs 28 ounces. SRP: $1,250.
dan wesson The 50th Anniversary Limited Edition 1911 in .45 Auto (top). the Vigil series (below) is built on checkered aluminum frames with stainless slides, and offers an affordable entry point to the line in several popular variants.
Nighthawk The Echelon 1911 has been designed to function with lighter-recoiling 9mm ammunition.
Remington is also offering the 41-ounce R1 1911 10mm Hunter FDE. It has a 6-inch stainless-steel match-grade barrel, a Cerakote flat dark earth finish, an accessory rail, wide front and rear cocking serrations, LPA adjustable rear sights, an extended beavertail grip safety, an adjustable trigger, and VZ G10 grips. SRP: $1,340. For little-gun lovers, Remington has added the
remington The RP45 pistol has the smallest full-size grip circumference of any pistol in its class.
RM380 Micro Carry Blue. This all-steel semi-auto is chambered for the .380 Auto and has a smooth DAO trigger, an ambidextrous mag release, interchangeable grip panels, an optimized grip angle, and an easy-to-rack slide. As for the color, it’s blue—Robin’s Egg Blue, to be exact. SRP: $348. The R51 is still with us because it is an excellent protection pistol. The R51 Subcompact Smoke has a smoke-colored frame and weighs only 22 ounces. This +P-compatible pistol utilizes the Pedersen block design, has an ambidextrous mag release, and comes with two 7-round magazines. SRP: $408. The striker-fired Remington RP45 pistol (15+1 capacity) has the smallest fullsize grip circumference of any pistol in its class. Other features include an ambidextrous slide release, a smooth, light, and crisp trigger, an accessory rail, an optimized grip angle, and a loadedchamber indicator. Ten-round
versions are also available. SRP: $418. (remington. com)
Ruger Ruger tends to launch new products anytime it feels like it, but here are a few notable mid-year introductions you might have missed. The 3-inch-barreled LCR in .22 WMR should be a great trail or kit gun for the camper. It weighs only 17.8 ounces and holds six .22 Magnum cartridges. The same revolver is also available with a more compact 1.87-inch barrel. SRP: $579. If you’d like a bit more punch to your compact revolver, Ruger has you covered there, too, with the six-shot .327 Federal Magnum LCR. It has a 1.87-inch barrel and is chambered for one of the most versatile revolver cartridges of all time; it can fire .32 Auto, .32 Short, .32 Long, .32 H&R Magnum, and .327 Federal Magnum cartridges. This is a little powerhouse. SRP: $669.
In the semi-auto line, Ruger has introduced a LaserMaxequipped LC9. It has a 7+1 capacity, a 3.12-inch barrel, weighs only 18.6 ounces, and is only 6 inches long. The LaserMax laser, which is mounted forward of the trigger guard, incorporates the patented LaserMax GripSense technology, and the unit includes a light as well. This is a lot of personal protection coolness for only $679. (ruger.com)
Smith and Wesson The compact M&P Shield 2.0 is fitted with a dedicated Crimson Trace laser that offers ambidextrous activation. These itty-bitty pistols come with a 7- and 8-round magazine, weigh 18.8 ounces, and are only 6.1 inches long (3.1 inches of which are barrel). Four laser-equipped variants are offered in 9mm or .40 S&W, with or without a thumb safety (SRP: $499). The same four versions are offered without the laser sight (SRP: $479). The Shield has set the standard for an affordable and reliable compact defensive handgun, and these new models add to its legacy. The Smith & Wesson Performance Center is offering three new models, two of which are revolvers. The Performance Center 686 is a 4-inch-barreled .357 Magnum that weighs 37.9 ounces. This all-stainless-steel six-shot revolver is loaded with features, including a tuned action. SRP: $966. The 38.4-ounce seven-shot 686 Plus has a 5-inch barrel and is tricked-out similarly. SRP: $966. The subcompact SW1911 in 9mm has an eight-round capacity. It has a 3-inch barrel and weighs only 26.2 ounces,
Smith & Wesson The compact M&P Shield 2.0 is now available with a dedicated Crimson Trace laser.
making it ideal for covert carry. Features include an oversize external extractor, a full-length guide rod, a round butt frame, a grip safety, and an ambidextrous thumb safety. SRP: $1,330. (smithwesson.com)
Steyr The Steyr RFP is a .22LR rimfire pistol with a single-
action trigger and synthetic grip frame. The RFP also has a trigger safety, a magazine safety, and a drop safety. The action is a recoil-operated blowback system, and the pistol is fed by a 10-round detatchable magazine. The RFP weighs 1.33 pounds and has a 4-inch barrel, with an overall length of just under 7Â inches. SRP: $425. (steyrarms.com)
ruger If youâ€™d like a bit more punch to your compact revolver, check out the sixshot .327 Federal Magnum LCR (left) and the LaserMax-equipped LC9 semi-auto (right).
W H AT ’ S S E L L I N G W H E R E
Northwest CA Sporting Goods, Willits
Located two hours north of San Francisco, this small-town general sporting goods store sells a wide range of soft goods as well as camping, fishing, and hunting supplies. Post-Christmas sales typically focus on .22s and knives. “We sell a ton of knives in January,” said manager Jason Lamprich. The hottest sellers continue to be Kershaw knives, Ruger 10/22s, and Henry lever-actions. A few Marlin 336c lever-action hunting rifles and Savage Model 10s also cross the counter. As for handguns, Glock 19s and Smith SS9s are moving well. Lamprich also expressed some relief that manufacturers were
Nick’s Gun & MO Pawn, Washington
Located one hour southwest of St. Louis, this rural gun and pawn shop specializes in hunting, home defense, and used guns. On average, it stocks 400 firearms. Bolt-action guns remain on an upward sales climb. Several Ruger Americans and a few Remington 700s in .243 are on the move. Ruger 10/22s are also seeing plenty of attention. Led by Ruger 556 and DPMS, MSRs are turning at two a week. “Our MSRs are holding their own. We expect them to do well for the rest of the year as more local hunters use them for varmints,” said counter salesman John Smith. Handguns sales also are strong.
improving the number of SKUs in California-compliant guns.
Trading Post, ID Red’s Twin Falls
Founded in 1936, Red’s is considered to be the oldest standing gun store in the state. The store keeps nearly 1,000 firearms in stock. Handgun sales top the activity board at this shop, with heavy numbers of Glock 43s and Smith Shields heading out the door. Another fast mover is the Springfield 1911. November and December posted strong bolt-action sales, especially with companies offering a 6.5 Creedmoor. A few varmint guns are moving, notably Montanas, Bergaras, and the Browning X-Bolts in .243.
Gun WA Welcher’s Shop, Tacoma
This busy metro retailer stocks a large inventory of hunting rifles, MSRs, and handguns. It’s located just off of I-5 across the road from the McChord Field Air Force base. As the first of the year rolls around, handguns are king at this retailer. “Our handgun sales remain consistent year-round. Price is still important and rebates drive numbers, but we are really busy,” said manager Bryan Welcher. Smith Shields are leading the pack, but HK PV9s and Sig 320s are selling well, too. Browning X-Bolts and Tikkas are turning well in .300 Win. Mag. and 6.5 Creedmoor. Sales of MSRs average five per week.
Bob Outfitters, KSJoe IL Gat’s Guns, Dundee Hays
This retailer specializes in home defense and MSRs. In addition to its brick-andmortar business, the store has a large online presence. Though sales of MSRs are flat, they have been steady. M&P Sports and custom-part orders are driving demand. Handun sales have been strong. Glock 43s and M&P 2.0s hold the top spots. “Our gift certificates really drive sales after the first of the year, and it almost always moves up our handgun sales,” said owner Joe Boeckner. Although bolt-action gun sales have slowed, December saw an impressive number of the Savage Axis in .308 and .243 go out the door.Ruger 10/22s are also hot.
This northwest suburban Chicago retailer uses 65,000 square feet to display 7,500 firearms. With 63 shooting lanes under its roof, this shop hosts one of the largest indoor ranges in the country. MSR sales are brisk, turning at 25 per week. “MSR turns are strong. Although we took it on the chin cleaning out some inventory at below cost earlier in the year, we have no complaints,” said general manager Randy Potter. Rebates are driving the low end, especially on M&P Sports. Meanwhile, sales are good to great on the high-end retail spectrum. Companies like Daniel Defense are seeing consistent turns.
BY PETER B . MATHIESEN
Howell’s Indoor ME Range & Gun Shop, Gray
Located just 15 miles north of Portland, this 27,000-square-foot store sells a mix of archery, soft goods, and firearms. The New England retailer keeps an average of 2,000 guns in stock and just added two new shooting lanes to its range. Handgun sales are on the rise. M&P 2.0s, Glock 10.5s, and Springfield’s XDSs occupy the top spots. MSRs have been moving slowly, according to founder Howe Copp. “Although steady at about two a week, MSR sales have been lackluster. What is growing is our inventory of used MSRs. They now get more attention than the new rifles,” he said. M&P Sports, Ruger
Target FL Gainesville Range, Gainesville This outdoor gun range can handle more than 80 shooters. The retail store caters to home defense and tactical clientele. Handgun sales have been good. Smith M&P Shields, Glock 43s, and Springfield XDSs are all pulling good numbers, especially in 9mm. Home-defense shotguns are moving well. Remington 870 Tactical and Mossberg 500 Tactical have been locked in a dead sales heat for the last two months. Sales of MSRs are also strong, at at least one per day. Top sellers include Daniel Defense and LWRC. “We have found that concentrating on a premium line of MSRs has helped our sales. It doesn’t hurt
556s, and models from Windham Weaponry are the top sellers.
after-season traffic on Savage Axis package guns, Ruger Americans, and Thompson Center Ventures.
With two locations sporting a total of 35,000 square feet of display space, this Pennsylvania retailer services a wide sales area from Scranton to Allentown. Handgun sales have been strong. “We have aggressive sales during the holiday season. Many of our customers purchase a handgun in January as a personal gift to start the new year,” said buyer Scott Dunkelberger. Sales of Smith Shields have been strong. Glock G5s and Glock 19s are in second place and moving well. Deer season is finishing up. This retailer is experiencing some
The Outpost Guns CT & Ammo, Uncasville
that we can demo the rifles on our range,” said counter salesman Ray Barber.
Guns, GA Sidney’s Augusta
Gallery, AR Pawn Clarksville
This small independent pawnshop is located 40 miles east of Fort Smith off of Interstate 40. On average, it stocks 250 firearms. Handgun inventories are good, and Glock 43s and Smith Shields are two top sellers. “Glocks and Shields just continue to sell. It’s amazing just how well these companies have held their market share,” said partner Kelly Elam. MSR sales have slowed, as have bolt-action rifles. Earlier in the season, sales of Remington 700s in .30/06 were quite good.
Located in eastern Connecticut, this small threeemployee shop specializes in home defense and training. Handgun sales are strong. Glock 43s and Smith Shields rule. “It’s simple. If you have a big Glock, you buy a little Glock. If you have a big Smith, you buy a little Smith. In short, this is the customer who keeps these concealed-carry guns in such high demand,” said manager Ernie King. Other quick sellers include the Mossberg 500 and the Remington 870 Express.
Founded as a haberdashery in the late 1800s, this uniform and soft goods company began to handle firearms in the 1960s to fill duty-belt orders from the local police department. Today, the firearms’ side of the business keeps more than 1,000 guns in stock. There are 10 million SKUs throughout the store. December is the biggest firearm sales month at this Georgia retailer. “Many companies have Christmas parties. Our customers literally leave the party to spend their seasonal bonus or buy gift certificates with us the same day. This sales uptick lasts through January,” said owner Steven Fishman.
BY BRIAN M C COMBIE
No Stick in the Mud Final Approach continues to innovate
he cold Manitoba rain tapped across the top of my Final Approach layout blind as a flock of Canada geese pivoted in the air, the big birds dipping their heads as they aimed for our decoys. “Hold until I give the word,” said John Vaca, the host of this hunt and national pro staff manager for Vista Outdoor. “Wait on it. Wait, guys. Now!”
With a quick shove of my knee, the right side of my ProGuide layout blind popped open. I sat up and raised my shotgun, picked out my targets, and quickly ran through my three shells. There were eight of us hunting that morning, and when the shooting stopped we had a halfdozen honkers on the ground. It was a great start to the hunt, made possible in no small part by the performance of our layout blinds. I’ve used plenty of layout blinds over the years, but the ProGuide impressed in three key areas. First, there was plenty of room—enough for me and my backpack, with legroom to spare. Second, the 19-inch profile provided enough leverage to easily open the blind doors. Third, the Pro-Guide kept me dry through a morning of light rain. “The Pro-Guide was Final
LiveCraft Floating Geese decoys (top) have a realistic paint scheme; the Forge Sport Dog Kennel is a mid-priced model.
Approach’s original blind, first introduced three decades ago,” Vaca said after the hunt. “We felt it was time to get back to our roots, to go a little old school, but with upgrades.” Those upgrades included the use of waterproof ballistic-nylon materials and a weather-resistant coating on the aluminum frame. The Pro-Guide (SRP: $355.95) had been out of the line since 2011, but it was reintroduced last year in time for waterfowl seasons. Final Approach also re-released its X-Land’r layout blind (SRP: $307.95) in 2017, a lower-profile and more easily packable blind, plus new goose and mallard decoys. For 2018, Final Approach continues to push ahead in the waterfowling market, with three new items. The Forge Sport Dog Kennel (SRP: $349.99) has been
designed specifically for sporting dogs. It fills the price-point gap between basic kennels and premium models, and it features singlewall roto-molded construction, adjustable window vents, and integrated tie-downs. LiveCraft Floating Geese decoys (SRP: $149.99, set of six) are Final Approach’s follow-up to its Full Body Geese decoys, which were launched in 2017. LiveCraft floaters have more added detail, a more realistic paint scheme, and a competitive price. Snow Goose Rags (SRP: $129.99) are made from coated Tyvek material. They come 25 to a box and fill a spread nicely when you’re snow goose hunting. Each has an integrated, collapsible stake. To help retailers sell more Final Approach products, the manufacturer is beefing up its social media efforts, including YouTube content that will include more how-to videos. Final Approach products and pro staffers will also be featured on two outdoor-television program. Vaca says the team’s pro staff is a key resource as well. “The Final Approach pro staff support the brand at the retail level,” he said. “Our team is brought in as product experts and seminar speakers to enhance consumer experience with Final Approach products. From a basic waterfowl seminar to an ‘in the weeds’ kind of clinic on specialized techniques, the Final Approach Team covers it all.” Currently, the Final Approach Team of pro staffers is made up of 45 people. (fabrand.com)
NEW PRO DUCTS
FROM PAGE 50 )
Gerber Legendary Blades ➤
The new Empower Automatic Series has been designed to deliver tactical performance in an everyday-carry blade. The series will include four color variations that all feature an S30V blade that’s deployed with the push of a button. The handle scales are photochemically etched to provide a solid grip. SRP: $125. (gerbergear.com)
The Skyway USB rechargeable flashlight features a powerful white LED with 2,200 lumens of brightness. It also has high, medium, and low settings, and a large
The Empower Automatic Series features handles that are photochemically etched.
power bank (5200 mAh) that will charge two to three smartphones. It also features a 26650 lithium-ion battery with a built-in USB charging port and USB-power out for charging other devices, and a dual tail-cap switch with separate con-
trols for mode selection and on-off. The non-slip ribbed aluminum body and tough polycarbonate lens are waterproof and submersible to 3 feet for 30 minutes. Overall length is 7.7 inches. SRP: $119.99. (browning.com)
U.S. POSTAL SERVICE STATEMENT OF OWNERSHIP, MANAGEMENT, AND CIRCULATION (Required by 39 USC 3685) 1. Publication Title: Shot Business; 2. Publication No. 1081-8618; 3. Filing Date: 10/1/2017; 4. Issue Frequency: Bi-Monthly Except for January and December; 5. No. of Issues Published Annually: 7; 6. Annual Subscription Price: $25.00; 7. Complete Mailing Address of Known Office of Publication: Bonnier Corporation, 2 Park Avenue, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10016; 8. Complete Mailing Address of Headquarters or General Business Office of Publisher: Bonnier Corporation, 2 Park Avenue, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10019; 9. Full Names and Complete Mailing Addresses of Publisher, Editor, and Managing Editor: Publisher: Greg Gatto, 2 Park Ave New York, NY 10016; Editor: Slaton L.White, 2 Park Ave New York, NY 10016; Managing Editor: Margaret Nussey, 2 Park Ave New York, NY 10016. 10. Owner: Bonnier Corporation, PO Box 8500, Winter Park, Florida 32790; 11. Known Bondholders, Mortgagees, and Other Securities: None; 12.Tax Status (for completion by nonprofit organizations authorized to mail at special rates): Has Not Changed During Preceding 12 Months; 13. Publication Title: Shot Business; 14. Issue Date for Circulation Data Below:Aug/ Sep 2017; 15a.Total Number of Copies: 21,263 (Aug/Sep 2017: 22,129); b. Paid Circulation: (1) Mailed OutsideCounty Paid Subscriptions Stated on PS Form 3541: 20,010 (Aug/Sep 2017: 21,068); c. Total Paid Distribution: 20,010 (Aug/Sep 2017: 21,068); d. Free or Nominal Rate Distribution: (1) Free or Nominal Rate Outside-County Copies included on PS Form 3541: 503 (Aug/Sep 2017: 475); (3) Free or Nominal Rate Copies Mailed at Other Classes Through the USPS: 0 (Aug/Sep 2017: 0); e. Total Free or Nominal Rate Distribution: 503 (Aug/Sep 2017: 475); f.Total Distribution: 20,513 (Aug/Sep 2017: 21,543); g. Copies not Distributed: 750 (Aug/Sep 2017: 586); h. Total: 21,263 (Aug/Sep 2017: 22,129); Percent Paid: 97.55% (Aug/Sep 2017: 97.80%).
Engraved TIG, BTB Logos and his signature on the models: T1-TIGSE • DE50TIG • ST9093TIG
John “TIG” Tiegen Special Edition
John “Tig” Tiegen, Member of the Benghazi Annex Security Team, Military Consultant, Hero of Benghazi Attack, and Co-Author of 13 Hours.
WWW.KAHR.COM | WWW.TOMMYGUN.COM | WWW.MAGNUMRESEARCH.COM
NEW PR ODU CTS
Deer camp without hot coffee is like billiards without a cue ball—unthinkable. The CoffeeBoxx is a Keurigtype portable coffeemaker that plugs into an AC outlet or a portable power supply. It makes a good cup of joe, and its rust-proof, easy-topack, durable design makes it perfect for camp. SRP: $230. (oxx.com) (Continued on page 49)
World’s best adjustable cheekrest CR1
Patents: US 20160216060 A1 EP3042141A1 EP3042141A4 WO2015034410A1
A versatile product that today is available for nearly 100 different composite stocked rifles and shotguns. - Easily installed at factory or by reseller using M-fix tool. - Can also be installed at home by end customer. - Over 25 000 sold since introduction in Sweden 2015.
”The only adjustable cheek rest for composite stocks that met our quality demands was the CR1 from Kalix Teknik. We have factory fitted over 10 000 CR1 on our rifles.” - Browning International, Manufacturer
”We now use Kalix Teknik products on all our rifles with adjustable cheekrest. It’s far superior to anything our manufacturers are producing.” - Gyttorp Sweden, Weapons distributor, (subsidary of Norma/Ruag)
Book an appointment with us at firstname.lastname@example.org
” We get daily requests from US customers asking for our products. That high demand has made the decision easy for us to establish Kalix teknik Inc. We felt simplifying access to our products for manufacturers and distributors on the US and Canadian market was necessary.”
- Magnus Lundbäck, CEO, Kalix Teknik
Tool for shops to install the CR1 even quicker
No Lever, knob or screw
HE’S NOT HERE TO FIX YOUR FLAT.
PEDERSEN BLOCK DESIGN Dissapates recoil energy for reduced felt recoil
LOW BORE AXIS Significantly less muzzle rise for faster follow-up shots and reduced felt recoil OPTIMIZED GRIP ANGLE Reduces felt recoil and points more naturally
TWO SEMI-FLUSH 7+1 ROUND MAGAZINES For concealability and backup firepower
THE ENHANCED R5I SUBCOMPACT
The perfection of a truly groundbreaking design. Point instinctively. Recover instantly. Re-engineered from the ground up and rigorously tested to deliver maximum reliability, the all-new R51 gets you on target faster and more intuitively than any other subcompact on the market. Add to that its dramatically reduced felt recoil and muzzle flip, and it’s exactly what you need to perform at your best when things are at their worst. #LiveReady
PROUDLY MADE IN THE USA BY AMERICAN WORKERS ©2017 REMINGTON ARMS COMPANY, LLC.
Published on Dec 21, 2017