Today didn’t start out real well for freedom in America when the FCC caved in to Obama and just turned the entire internet over to him. He has been wanting this for years and we thought the FCC would hold strong, instead they caved in. We have no idea how this is going to turn out but you can bet it won’t be good. I imagine many sites will be considered too violent and will be forced to shut down. Some that allow people to speak their mind will have to watch what they say about Obama or be labeled a hate crime. And pretty much anything goes with Obama in charge.
   Obama is still trying to get 223 ammo banned. Mainly the 62 grain bullet, claiming it will go thru a bullet proof vest. The main problem here is that bullet is a standard full metal jacket, and if he succeeds in banning it, then the 55 grain FMJ will probably be next and so on. I am sure you get tired of hearing this, but if you haven’t already, now is the time to call your elected officials and ask them to fight this.
On the considerably less pessimistic vein, our next HHC is now 5 weeks away and those 5 weeks will go quick. I hope to have several new series to premier at the hunt and if all goes well a couple of new calibers too.  A lot of folks are calling asking for more info on the hunt and these are people that are not regulars on our forum. They are hearing about our hunts on other forums and other sites. Our Handgun Hunter’s Challenge (HHC) is becoming quite popular and I can understand why. What is not to like when you can spend 3 days with friends of like minds, do some hunting and spend some time looking at guns, and shooting them and hunting with them if you like. if you have not had a chance to make one of our hunts, this one is April 2-5 and is at the Wilderness Hunting Lodge in Monterey Tennessee. To sign up just call 931-839-2091, and consider yourself invited.
They say 2014 was the year of suppressors and night vision scopes and I believe it. I think 2015 will be much the same as more and more folks are doing the paperwork to get their suppressors and more and more are buying night vision optics. There are even a couple of companies that make a night vision optic that attaches to your current scope, so you don’t have to spend $10,000 on a good night hunting scope.
I think the tremendous amount of wild hogs in this country is spurring this on. The hogs are having 3 and 4 litters a year and other than man, they really don’t have any predators. Several states have OK’d night hunting for hogs and just about every ammo maker has released their own hog killing specialty ammo, from 12 gauge slugs to standard rifle ammo to soft point handgun ammo.  many of the Misfits on our forum are avid hog hunters, none as much as Sean harper. I think Sean hunts hogs more hours a week than the average man sleeps. And I say that with envy. But many of us get our chance to hunt hogs in a few weeks at the HHC.  Also I have one of those arrow guns, called the Airrow Gun. It works off a 22 blank and fires a standard broadhead arrow at about 450 fps. I plan to have mine sighted in and have it at the HHC for any of the guys to use if they like.
If you like the Beretta M-9, the military version of the Beretta M-92, they will probably be very abundant on the market very soon. Our military is looking for a new sidearm for the various forces and recently Beretta offered their new M-9A-3 pistol for evaluation. The folks in charge turned it down flat, not even wanting to test it for a possible contract. It seems the military wants a bigger caliber with more power than the 9mm. The strange thing is a short while ago the Marines went to custom 1911s made by Colt in 45 ACP for their carry gun. This week I read that they have now said they want to go back to the Glock 9mm as it was more reliable. Sorta looks like Colt’s reliability just isn’t what it used to be. They cited reliability and ammo capacity as the reason for dropping the Colt 1911. Anyway, a friend at a distributor told me recently that they will be getting a large shipment soon of the M-9 A1 pistols, the ones the military has been using since the early 80s. If you are a Beretta freak, this is your chance. And speaking of Beretta, they have finally jumped on the bandwagon and released the new APX, which is a full size polymer frames striker fired pistol. With our military not all warm and fuzzy over the Berettas they will most likely offer it to foreign governments rather than our military and police. They say they will make s model for the commercial market sometime later this year.
The 1911 pistol continues to be the top handgun in the non striker category. There are something like 40 companies making the 1911 in it’s various configurations. Our new 1911s are doing very well, especially the new Texas Ranger model in 10mm and in 45. We also have one more series of 1911 we hope to premier at the HHC. One of our series of custom 1911s is our Patriot. We registered this series name almost 4 years ago but never came up with a series of gun to hang the name on. Now we have but I am seriously thinking of dropping the name and continuing the series under another name. The reason for that is there were 2 new guns premiered at the SHOT SHOW called the Patriot. One was a 1911 and the other was the new Mossberg top end rifle. We had the name registered first but I would rather change the name as we are very early in this than to spend boucoup amount of money fighting it in court. A name is just a name and we can put the same gun out under a new name. No big deal. Neither of the companies have complained or contacted us about the name but I don’t have the time to go into a long drawn out fight over a name. It simply isn’t worth it. I haven’t decided on this for sure yet but an fairly sure of the direction I plan to go. It will make folks that have our Patriots already have an instant collector’s item as there have only been 4 or 5 sold and there is still one on the in stock list.
Some of you may remember the Mini Mauser rifle that came out in the late 70s. It was a neat little rifle, downsized and in calibers like 222, 223 and such. For some reason they dropped it after only a couple of years, which I thought was a shame. Now Howa is bring their version of it out, called the Mini Action. The bolt is 5” shorter than the standard bolt in a regular bolt gun. The gun weighs right at 6 lbs and is slated to be released in 204 and 223. With the bolt only 6” total overall it will be a very fast working action. For those not familiar with the Howa, they are the folks that have made the Weatherby rifles for years, before they started making them here in the states. They also made the very high grade Smith & Wesson Model 1500s and later on the Mossberg 1500 rifles. A very fine rifle making company, now making rifles under their own name. In fact the Howa M-1500 is the exact same gun as the fine Weatherby Vanguard.
Speaking of Weatherby, they continue to come out with specialty shotguns, and very well made shotguns to boot. Their newest is for the turkey hunter and is the model SA-459. It has a 22” full vent rib, chrome lined barrel, removable Picatinny rail and a special camo pattern. And I know you are thinking, why a 22” barrel? Well, long barrels are absolutely not necessary in shotguns anymore, nor in rifles for that matter. Our powders are quicker burning, cleaner burning and do in 22” what they used to require a 26 or 28” barrel to do. The same goes for rifle barrels with most companies switching to 21 to 22” barrels.  The new Weatherby shotgun comes in 12 gauge and 20 gauge.
Also on the subject of Mauser rifles above, there is a new Mauser rifle coming out for those that demand the best. This is the newest version of the Mauser M98 and is of the double square bridge design, the design many top end custom rifles are made on. It has a 2 leaf express sight, has a redesigned big game stock and a 3 position swing safety. It will be premiered next month in several calibers. Oh yeah, one small thing I forgot, the retail price starts at $12,495. Pocket change.
Rock Island Armory, the makers of some of the finest 1911s on the market are coming out with a true 1911 in 22 Magnum called the XT22. As far as I know this will be the first true 1911 chambered in 22 Magnum.  In another line of handguns we can expect to see several new AR-15 pistols offered this year. With almost 200 companies making either AR-15s or AR lowers or uppers, and all vying for the business of that one fellow in 1000 that does not already have an AR-15. Some of these companies are already strapped for cash and we can see that long list of AR makers dwindle quite a bit by the end of this year, that is, unless Obama does something to spook the American public again and send them scrambling to buy one more AR.
Another AR maker, Rock River Arms has introduced their new AR in .458 caliber. It is called the LAR .458 Beast. I am not exactly sure what 458 cartridge they are chambering in the gun but it uses standard size AR magazines. It may be that they have their own 458 caliber cartridge out. The gun comes with their own designed muzzle brake. It is a sleek looking carbine but with a suggested retail price of $1500 it is aimed at a certain group of shooters, those that hunt large critters.
Years ago there was a military rifle out that had a straight pull bolt that came straight back and was considered one of the best battle rifles ever made. Since then straight pull bolt guns have been few and far between. Well, Merkel has changed all that with their new Helix Explorer. It is a bolt gun with a straight pull bolt that is super slick. You can work the bolt with one finger. It is an all black rifle with the obvious European flair to the stock and design of the barrel. It comes in several calibers from 222 up to 300 Win Magnum. It is a rifle where you can buy barrels and exchange them with the lowering of a lever. The rifle comes with built in scope bases made into the top of the receiver. The gun weighs a bit over 6 lbs which should make a a great rifle for hunting the high ridges and mountain sides for sheep and other such game. The gun is not cheap at $3200 but it is sleek, smooth and as handy as can be. Merkel is a great company offering some double rifles at decent prices and this one should be a popular rifle if the company publicizes it right.
You black powder enthusiasts will have some new guns to drool over this year and some strange ones too. There are some space age designs that will have the traditional black powder shooter wondering why. They are also coming out with some black powder rifles that claim extremely small groups at 200 and 300 yards.
On the subject of black powder guns, our new American Classic revolver is getting a lot of attention and we really haven’t premiered it yet. The new American Classic is built on the Ruger Old Army and comes in a 5 shot cylinder model with an octagonal barrel and new sights. It comes chambered in a higher powered 45 caliber, a 475 caliber and a new 50 caliber. The 50 caliber is actually a 51 caliber as it uses .510 caliber balls and bullets. I hope to have at least one of each available at the next HHC for anyone to shoot and hunt with if they like. Early testing has had very good results with Jeff Jones, (Hobbit) doing my testing of the guns. The 475 caliber is running 41 Magnum power and 1 1/2” groups at 35 yards, open sights. The 51 caliber is still in the testing stage but it is looking very good too.
Those that carry a 45 ACP for self defense should check out the new Double Tap ammo. It is dubbed the 450 SMC and is a 160 grain bullet at 1350 fps out of a standard 5” 1911. Double Tap has been the top end ammo for the 45 ACP for several years now. They also make probably the best 10mm ammo on the market also. Also on the topic of ammo, with almost every ammo maker making special ammo for wild hogs, Winchester is coming out with a very special rifle round designed solely for whitetail deer. It is called Deer Season and the first load is a 150 grain bullet in 30-06 with other calibers to come. It has a special bullet designed especially for deer with what they call the Extreme Point, designed to open up immediately.
With the rash of home invasions getting worse every month, we can expect a lot of special home defense shotguns to hit the market this year. Mossberg, long the leader in home defense shotguns, has a new shotgun out called the Tactical Tri Rail with Center Mass. The Center Mass is a laser attached to the bottom of the forend. and is far enough ahead to not hamper with your hold on the forend. Several other shotgun companies are coming out with various new home defense shotguns. And what I think is a smart move, several of the companies that make AR parts are working deals with the shotgun companies to use their parts on the home defense shotguns. parts like the M-4 stock, forend rails, special red dot sights and a lot more.
Mossberg, as I mentioned above, has long been the originator of shotguns designed for ladies and has done a very good job at it. Now there is actually a crossbow designed for the lady hunter. It is the Covert 3.4 Hot Pursuit crossbow. It is said to be catered to the “tactical women”. It is smaller in size as compared to the average crossbow and comes in the popular Muddy Girl camo. It is good to see more and more companies, gun and accessory alike, coming out with products for the ladies.
That is it for this month. More info next time and if you haven’t signed up for the HHC yet, do so soon. If you have any questions, feel free to call me at the shop at 928-526-3313.
Until then, take a lady or youngster shooting. They are our future. Til next time, God bless.