Gary's Gun Notes #41

We have finally made it thru the hectic Christmas season and as the days wind down for 2005, we begin to get little rumors of new things to come for 2006. For many in the gun industry it has been a good year. For some, not so good and for some, downright funky.

One of the major handgun manufacturers who had put a ton of money and time into a couple of new handguns is hurting. Word has it they are in the worst condition since the late 60's. Again word is they are down to the figure of $200 million in the hole. I do hope they can pull out of this hole as they are one of my favorites.

A couple of rifle manufacturers are also not doing as well as they had planned, after putting a lot of apples in one short magnum basket. I don't think either of these companies is in any risk of biting the bullet, just not doing anywhere near as well as they had projected. 

Ruger is doing well, as usual. This year they had the special flattop 357 magnum revolver out. In 2006 they will have a special flattop 44 magnum out as the 50th anniversary of the 44 magnum cartridge. Ruger plans several new guns for the new year, mostly long guns. A couple of new 22s and a couple of new model 77s are on tap. 

Colt has hired a new handgun manager to perk up their handgun production and sales. They have built very few handguns in the last couple of years and the ones they do build are highly overpriced for what you get. The Colt Anaconda is an excellent revolver, but it is not and has never been a $1300 gun. Colt has a definite rectal cranial inversion on that one. 

Smith & Wesson gave as an example of their new products their new Military & Police pistol. This is what bothers me about S&W. For many many years the Chiefs Special was the snubbie model 36 in 38 special. Now they have pulled this name out of their asses and given it to a new 45 auto. And to confuse us even more they have done it again. For many many moons the Military & Police or M&P was their old original model 10 revolver in 38 special. Now they have taken that name and given it to a new 9mm semi auto. Smith & Wesson needs to hire someone that is familiar with their guns.

Winchester has scheduled a new line up of super duper rifle ammo. It is called the Supreme Elite XP3. Winchester has joined just about everybody else and is putting a polymer tip on their new XP3 ammo. Hopefully this will be another partnership between Winchester and Nosler. If so we can figure on this one being a good one. I have a definite fondness for Nosler bullets. 

Those of you that are interested in nice little double guns, as in a side by side 20 gauge, there is a new company coming out with a new lightweight 20 gauge with a round frame. The company is Connecticut Arms and they have a lot of features in this gun and a long list of options that are available. The surprising thing about this little gun is the price. It lists at an introductory price of $2795 with delivery scheduled for April of '06. I have this fondness for little 20 gauge guns and may have to order one of these. If you are interested, either e-mail me or call and I will give you their number. 

The Crusader company, the folks that bought out the AMT/Auto mag line up of semi auto pistols should be releasing the original Auto mag 2 as you read this. This is the little semi auto in 22 magnum in 3 barrel lengths. By early '06 they say they will have their Auto mag 3 out which is their 30 carbine semi auto pistol. Hopefully they will continue with the line up and the Auto mag 4, which was the 45 Winchester Magnum and the Auto Mag 5 which was the 50 AE version will see the light of day again. Maybe if we cross our fingers, they will actually bring back the original Auto mag in 357, 41 and 44 Auto mag calibers. My fingers are crossed.

Another of the old classic autos is back, and that is the Detonics 45 auto. Jerry Ahern, who writes for a couple of gun magazines and is a custom holster maker is the head man of this new company. Kase collects the old Detonics 45 autos, along with the Bren Tens and the Omega line up of 10mms. I know he is looking forward to the full line up of Detonics pistols from the New Detonics. 

European American Arms (EAA) is now making a new single shot pistol for the handgun hunter. It reminds me of the old Dominator that was out for a while from Pachmayr. The barrel and action sits atop a frame that looks just like a 1911 frame. The gun is named Thor and comes in 45-70, 444 and 308. 

Our 2005 Classic guns did well with Bill Firman and Charlie Herf taking one each. One was Kase's Condition One, which is a small compact 1911 45 auto. The other was the prototype of a new series, the El Diablo Classic which is a snubbie old model Ruger chambered in 44 special.

We have a new series of custom rifle coming out based on the Ruger #1 single shot rifle. These will be short stubby little rifles in large calibers. I will tell you more later. 

Our reloading manual for the GNR calibers is a step closer to being fact. Larry Kovach will be collaborating with me on this one with some input on the calibers that he loads commercially. We are both close to having the text finished and ready to send it to the printer. Hopefully by mid February, if all goes well, we should see these manuals. Hopefully.

Our next African hunt is now less than 3 months away and I can truthfully say I am really looking forward to this one. We have a total of 13 hunters involved in 2 separate hunts. I will be there for both hunts which will be something different for me. It is hard for me to be gone for more than a week but I am really depending upon Kase and Colleen to hold it together for me while I am gone.

I will start booking our 2007 African hunt in about a week. If you have been wanting to go to Africa with us, by all means do so. It is not costly at all, in fact it is much cheaper than a guided outfitted elk hunt here in Arizona. The average my guys have spent on our Africa hunts over the last 5 years for a full week of hunting in Africa and taking 4 or 5 plains game animals is $5300 plus the airfare. Bet you thought it would be a lot more, huh. And there are no hidden charges or expenses. It is by far the best buy on the market today.

The 2007 hunt will be my 64th hunt to all four corners of the world, and my 11th to Africa. If you would like some info about our 2007 hunt give me a call sometime. I have tentatively scheduled it for late March or early April of 2007. I haven't booked an area yet as I will want to talk to those going first to see what they want to hunt. If you would like to go with me on this hunt, give me a call at 928-526-3313. I'd love to have to go with us.



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