What a crazy couple of months weíve had. I was a little apprehensive about putting the Gun Notes on a short vacation until we got thru the holidays, but now Iím glad I did. And I thank all of you for being patient.
First off, let me get this out of the way. Our economy is doing great. People for the most part have excess money in the bank and they are spending it. Now here is the unusual part. They are not spending it on guns. I have talked to several Misfits that normally buy a custom gun every month or so, but they havenít done so lately. The reason is the good economy. Doesnít make sense, does it? Well, actually it does. They are buying new cars, painting their houses, putting new roofs on their houses, and doing numerous things that they wouldnít normally do in a stable ho hum economy. They will always find a way to buy a gun or two during a stable economy but during a rebounding economy they try to do what they have put off for a couple of years. Here in nothern Arizona several gun shops have gone out of business due to a lack of business. So it is one of those weird times, money wise, but things will get back to ďnormalĒ before long. Some gun shops that specialize in AR-15s and such are hurting. The AR-15 business is DEAD. They are a glut on the market. A good friend that was at the SHOT show a couple of days told me the first day it was really busy. The second day about half that and the third dayÖdead. The booths that were showing unusual items did a fair business but those with those evil ďassaultĒ rifles could have taken a nap during most parts of the day.
Some items were attention grabbers and we will go over some of those items in a minute, but first donít take my words above as doom and gloom. It is just a matter of fact that Trump is doing so well for us that folks arenít afraid of the pucky hitting the fan (at least right now) and arenít running out and buying extra AR-15s and cases of ammo. But as is normal, all things will pass and this down turn in firearm sales will pass also. Keep the faith baby.
Now there is one exception to all thisÖVirginia. Their hard core anti gun governor is determined to turn Virginia into another California, New Jersey, New York or Massachusetts. But this terrible time for Virginia should teach us something. This is exactly what many stateís governors will do if we elect them. This should scare hell out of us and make us be a bit more vigilant of the politicians we elect. Once the wolf gets in the hen house, itís hard to get him out before he does irreparable damage. And Virginiaís gun owners are in for some tough times. Those of you that have leaders in your state that are much like the idiot in Virginia need to heed what is going on and make sure it doesnít happen in your state. I talked to a couple of folks in Virginia a while back that said the new Gov. wasnít going to do anything but stop gun sales without the NICS check. Since then he has passed about a dozen anti gun laws and the folks I talked to are crying the blues. So donít trust these liberal politicians. No way, no how.
OK, enough of the anti gun news. How about some gun news from the SHOT show. Some items are good news, some are companies grasping for your money with gimmicks.
First off everyone knows about the new 2020 Colt Python. Colt has had a hard time getting decent guns on the market lately. The Agent, King Cobra and now the Python. The internet is full of negative crap and the new Python is one of the main topics. Apparently a lot of new Pythons have been recalled with problems. Colt has a lot of money tied up in revamping the Python so they canít just sweep it under the rug. They have to get the problems fixed or else. So in a normal situation I would bet they get the guns fixed and back in the distributors inventory. But Colt hasnít been normal for years. I guess we will just have to wait and see.
Rugerís new model 57 should be a good one. I just wish they would quit using names or calibers that have been in us for eons. The 57 has always been the model 57 S&W in 41 Magnum. Rugerís 57 is the new 5.7 X 28 pistol. Everything I have heard about it is good and knowing Ruger it will be a wise decision and a good seller for them. We supposedly have one on the way, but as of today it hasnít arrived yet. Ruger is also bringing out their new AR-556 in pistol form. On this one I am not sure. With the AR glut on the market, your guess is as good as mine.
Sort of on the same subject, Diamondback Arms is bringing out an AR pistol chambered in 5.7 X 28. It is a compact little handgun with a folding stock. The 5.7 is having a revival of interest and hopefully this one and the Ruger 57 will do well.
Some new items that we received pre-release guns on include the Glock 44, which is a 22 LR the size of the model 19. A good feeling and functioning gun from Glock as usual and decently priced. Plus it has an ambi slide release for you lefties. We also got one of the new Springfield Armory Hellcat pistols. This is another one I have to grit my teeth and smile as we had our Hellcat out for 4 years now and somehow our Hellcat name was borrowed.
Another pre-release was the Ruger LCP-2, the new little pistol in 22 LR. A lot of ladies like this one due to the slide being super easy to pull back. It is called the Lite Rack for this reason.
Heritage Arms is bringing back a revolver carbine which is a revolver in 22 LR with a 16Ē barrel and a stock. It is called the Rancher. The Heritage guns are good little revolvers at a decent price and this new one should be a good one for a truck or saddle gun.
Remington is bringing out a model 700 pistol, dubbed the 700 CP. Based on the model 700 short action is has the short stabilizer stock and has a 12Ē barrel. It will be chambered in 308 plus a couple of other calibers. I am sorta surprised they didnít just use the XP-100 tooling as it is already there and the XP was one of their biggest sellers for silhouette shooters and handgun hunters.
For those not enamored by the nylon stocks on most long guns these days, there is hope. Ruger is bringing out their Hawkeye Hunter, which is a real nice soft satin walnut stock and stainless steel barrel and action. It will be chambered in 308, 30-06 and the 300 WIN. Mag. which will be offered with a muzzle brake. Another Hawkeye from Ruger will be their Long Range Hunter, a magazine fed rifle with a long barrel, chambered in 6.5 PRC. That will most assuredly put the final nails in the 6.5 Creedmoorís coffin.
A few years back we brought out a series of black wooden stocks and forends on custom Marlin rifles and they did so-so. Some folks didnít care too much for the black on black. Well, the folks that decide on new guns in a couple of companies must have liked them as companies like Marlin and Henry are bringing their version of our all black lever gun out. Henry is making it a whole new series called the X Model, as part of the Big Boy series of guns. They will be chambered in 410 shotgun, 357 Mag, 44 Mag, 45 Long Colt and 45-70. Our guns had the normal wood stock with the black stain, whereas the Henry guns will have black nylon stocks and forends.
Beretta hasnít been too hot lately probably due in part to no new special guns. They have been stuck in the model 92 pistol on 9mm. They must have a gazillion guns in their warehouses and they keep coming out with new versions of the old military issue model 92. No idea how they are selling but fans of the old model 92 are probably few and far between these days. They are also bringing back another old timer. This is the Tomcat in 22 LR. This is a little pocket size 22 and there is also a Tomcat Covert which is the Tomcat with a suppressor combo.
Those of you that grew up with a Winchester Gallery gun in a pump 22 LR will be glad to know that Rossi is bringing the little model 92 pump back out. It will have an 18Ē barrel and since Taurus bought out Rossi their quality has come up quite a bit, so this should be a good one, especially for youngsters.
There are probably 3 or 4 Gun Notes of new items from the SHOT show and I will get to some of them next time. Til then, next time when you go shooting or hunting, take along a lady or youngster. They are now more than ever the future of our sport.