NRA Annual Meeting, Day Two

Or, why, oh WHY did I choose to wear my dress shoes yesterday instead of my comfy, padded sneakers?

Today was spent wandering the exhibit floor, wrapping up sources for a few upcoming articles and coming up with new articles to pitch to my editors, and hopefully, they’ll pay me enough to afford this antique Winchester rifle.

450k? For a lever gun?

Yes, you read that right, that’s $350-450,000 American greenback dollars for that gun. The weird thing was, it was the second-least expensive rifle in the case: Its companion had a lovely honey-blond maple stock and even more engraving, and the expected sales price on it was $450-550,000.

If that seems a little outrageous, (and it is), we have this nice S&W Volcanic No.1, for the comparitively cheap price of $20-30,0000.

Volcanic!

Moving into guns from the this century, I was a little… whelmed by the Hudson H1. Yes, the trigger is nice, but is it nicer than the trigger in the CZ P10C? No, not really.
Hudson, docked.

And finally, signs for the NRA’s new legal services division, NRA Carry Guard, were EVERYWHERE, but more on that tomorrow.

NRA Carry Guard

NRA Annual Meeting, Day One

Or, eight hours on the floor, and I *swear* I haven’t been drinking yet.

A little more on the Springfield XD-E… The gun is surprisingly ergonomic, even though it looks like a shrunken-head HiPoint. The trigger is not the best DA/SA trigger I’ve felt, in fact, it was quite bad. The single action was felt heavier than the 4-5 pounds they said it was, and the double action was long, heavy and had noticable stacking.

Taurus T4SA

Taurus, throwing caution to the wind, came out with an AR-15.

An AR-15 with a $1199 MRSP.

Honestly, they’re not bad guns. THe T4SA has Cerakoating, Melonite barrels and bolt carrier groups, is lightweight (6.5lbs), and has Magpul gear all over. Not bad, and a step up above the usual entry-level AR-15.

Speaking of firearms manufacturers from the Florida with a reputation for low-cost guns, Sccy has finally come out with their CPX-3, a not-quite pocket gun in .380 ACP. I had a bad history with the first-generation Sccy, but since then, they’ve got their act together, the CPX-2 has been a great little inexpensive gun. One thing that impressed with me with the CPX-3 was how stupendously easy to rack it was. While the trigger on the CPX-3 was a still a Sccy trigger and there for long and heavy (8-10 pounds), it was smooth, even and didn’t stack. This would be my “go-to” recommendation for someone older who wanted a gun for self-protection and was worried about manipulating the gun into action.

Lastly, let’s talk about The Fix from Q, a bolt-action gun that set the world on fire when it was introducted at SHOT earlier this year.

All I can say is… believe the hype. The gun is AMAZINGLY light, the bolt feels terrific and the trigger is great.

If only they made a model for those of us who shoot left-handed.

This Was The Gun That CZ Was Supposed To Make, But Springfield Did Instead.

Springfield has come out with a DA/SA subcompact. The problem is, this was the gun that I told CZ to make.

In a world where a seven pound pull and a break not unlike a staple gun is considered great and long ten-pound DAO triggers are not unheard of, a polymer gun with a nine-pound first pull / five pound second would become a shooter’s best friend. Team that up with a spring system that allows for easy slide manipulation and the ergonomics you’re already known for, CZ, and you’d take over the market.

I’ll have more once I get to fondle it on the floor today, but my first impression is, that is one mother-ugly gun. It looks like someone hand-washed a Hi-Point and it up and shrunk on them.

What To Expect From Trump At NRA.

There are now only two trusted institutions within the American conservative movement: The military, and the National Rifle Association*. Thankfully, our system of government is set up so that political control of the military is limited at best, so that leaves the NRA as the one flag that rank and file conservatives can (mostly) rally around.

Well, conservatives outside of the Beltway and off the island of Manhattan, that is.

And now on Friday, Trump is going to be the first sitting President since Ronaldus Maximus to address the NRA Annual Meeting.

I’ve heard him talk twice now, and the fact is, political rallies just aren’t my thing. When he does speak, though, I’m expecting him to thank gun owners for their support, and for him to announce that he’s putting a nominee to head the BATFE (hopefully it’s Ronald Turk). I also expect him to talk about National Reciprocity and the Hearing Protection Act, because he’s been a bit silent on gun rights during his first 100 days, and those issues helped put him in office.

Look for further updates from the NRA Annual Meeting throughout the week.


* Yes, I know there are other organizations who claim to be “NO COMPROMISE!!” and preach that the NRA is nothing but a bunch of sellouts, but there are very good reasons why the bogeyman of the gungrabbers is the NRA, not the GOA.

Springfield’s Coming Out With Something New At NRA

’bout time.

From their press release:

Attendees will be the first to see an all-new Springfield Armory® pistol platform at the upcoming 2017 National Rifle Association Annual Meeting and Expo when convention hall doors open at 9 a.m., Friday, April 28, 2017.

Now, the company is poised to offer the next major addition to its broad and diverse handgun family. Designed to offer specific benefits that solve persistent handgun user challenges, the new platform brings a unique set of features that enhance usability and ease of operation.

Thanks Springfield, that told us absolutely NOTHING about what you’re coming out with at NRA. Fortunately, they did include a video, with some guy named Leatham, who I hear is a pretty good shooter or something.

Judging by the video above and screen captures below, it appears to be a small, thin, 1911 style pistol with a fiber optic front sight, Novak-style rear sight and a rail of some sort. Recoil seems feisty, so it may be chambered in 9mm or even .45, rather than .380ACP

Reports of a grip zone remained unconfirmed at this time.

Anyways, I’ll be looking at it at NRA, as will a number of other people, I suppose.

New Springfield 1911

Introducing a new springfield

Derp Knows No Boundaries

What, you think dumb gear ideas is just something that pops up inside the gun community?

Think again!

This such a bad idea, it’s hard to know where to start. It’s not any faster than storing your lens in a gadget bag or fanny pack, and it offers the added “benefit” of not havin any place to store your strobe, battery packs or memory cards, either!

Such a deal!

If you’re thinking this is a good idea, lie down for a few minutes, then buy a Domke once the feeling has gone away.

Girls, Girls… You’re BOTH Pretty!

The USCCA* has been doing a pretty good job of racking up memberships and exposure as of late, and their “Concealed Carry Expo” is pretty much all Gun Culture 2.0, all the time, while at the NRA Annual Meeting, you’ll see farm equipment and whatnot mixed in with all the gun stuff.

And then this happens.

The United States Concealed Carry Association (USCCA) today announced that the National Rifle Association (NRA) has disinvited the organization from its 2017 Annual Meetings & Exhibits and the 2018 Great American Outdoor Show because of “concerns regarding its programs.”

The move shocked the leadership of the USCCA because they were given less than two weeks notice that they had been banned from the annual show, even though they had attended for the past several years. This decision also came as a surprise because over the past two months, the leadership from the NRA and the USCCA met twice to discuss the shared goal of the two organizations in support of the Second Amendment.

To be honest, I’m a little disappointed in the NRA’s actions. I’m not the biggest fan of the USCCA’s marketing, as it’s a little too frantic for my tastes, but this is not the way to go. If the NRA is losing ground to the USCCA in the training and concealed carry insurance areas, the way to beat them isn’t to ban them, it’s come out with better products. I’m also wondering if this is partially the outcome of the high-profile of the NRA-ILA as of late. When people think “NRA”, the think “Gun Lobby”, not “Guys who do great training (or not)” or “Wow, I like their insurance plan!”. If people see you as a one trick-pony, that opens up space for another horse in the race **.


* Just so you know, I make a little bit of cash off both the USCCA and the NRA from the links on this blog.
** Is that a tortured metaphor or what? I’ll leave it be, because I don’t want to beat a dead horse…

… And Knowing Is Half The Battle.

The other half is the battle is, of course, beating the enemy into submission with decisive movement and overwhelming firepower.

Funny how they never mentioned that part in those old G.I. Joe cartoons.

I digress.

If you have any interest at all in training people to shoot well or moving the ball forward when it comes to firearms ownership in America, take more than a few moments and read Karl Rehn’s “Beyond The One Percent” series. It’s breathtakingly good, and lays out the issues we face clearer and more presicely than anything I’ve read before.

What’s interesting is that his recommendations closely mirror my own experience. When I got my CCW, lo these many years ago, my instructor taught the class in two sections, over the course of a weekend. At the time, Arizona required class room instruction and a live-fire portion before granting a permit (that’s changed since then), and my instructor broke up the class into two parts: A classroom portion that talked about Arizona gun laws, etc, on a Saturday, and then a brief range session the following day, with an optional, inexpensive (less than $100) stress fire / holster practice session immediately following. Most of the students in my class opted for the live fire practice, giving students a taste of the concealed carry lifestyle and the stress fire found in competition, and doubling the instructor’s take from the class in the process.

Instructors would do well to stop thinking of themselves as selling a product (concealed carry classes, gun training, etc.) and start seeing themselves as evangelists for a way of life.