First SHOWSHOW report
WOW. I had a friend who has been to SHOWSHOT tell me that if you walked past each booth, you walk a Marathon. I thought to myself, "sure, another fish tale." This is my first SHOTSHOW, and It is probably true. Honestly, I have never seen so many booths full of exhibitors, ever. I learned that SHOWSHOW is the 5th largest trade show in Las Vegas.
So, apologies, as I did not get to submit a report on Day 1, so this is a Day 1 + 2 report. I was so exhausted at the end of the day, and the day is all business -- no shows, no table games, just meeting vendors and learning and sharing.
Okay, so what are the headlines? I will give you my version, and in no particular oder.
1) The rise of the Valkyrie. I am not sure who determined that this will be the next big thing, but for a round that I have never seen, and never shot, every rifle manufacture seems to think they need a .224 Valkyrie gun. I know, Mark Keefe wrote about it a few months back in American Rifleman, but you read all sorts of "next big things." Maybe. Personally, my money is on .260 Remington or the 6.5mm Creedmoor. I don't think we need another round under 6mm. But who am I? Every gun manufacturer here is pushing it.
2) New goodies from KAC. Well, you know we are Knight's people at Charlies. What is more amazing is the hype of what would be here, than really what is here. But, for those of us who long for yester-year Knight's nostalgia -- there is the "MRE" RAS rail, and a couple of HK rails, and some mid-size RAS rails. I was told by Knight's management to expect big things. Not so big. They also have two new SR25 riles, one in 14.5" MLok and a 6.5mm CM 22." I suppose that is interesting. We are putting in a order for the MRE, but it might be tough to get more than a handful. I was told the first run sold out today, and then next run will be in the Fall of 2018.
3) Mark LaRue is at SHOT, and taking a lot of private meetings. When we were there today and yesterday, it looked like military, so we shall see. The SUURG rile was on display. I will tell you that it felt good to handle. Very unique. I like the idea of using a short barrel and pinning the can to it to make it 16" street legal, and the heat shield is very different. Then there was the Siete. Or shall I say part of the Siete. LaRue had on display four different barreled receivers. We asked about the barrel and got the same super-double probation explanation that it was Texas Quality and they were not to release the type of steel, the nature of the black coating or the rifling. It is Remington 700 SA, and a number of barrel lengths. No gun yet. Mark's private .260 wood framed aluminum bedded prototype was on display. I know there is a big LT fan base out there, and Charlie's loves most LT products, but I think it will be a tough sell, in the bolt action market to not disclose the steel and the rifling. Just my thought. Met John and Dan and some of the back office gang. All good, but no real big news out of LT.
4) Bill Geissele was at SHOT. We saw him busy talking to Army and USMC folks. He debuted a .260 gas gun in the Fall at Marine Day. He is calling "her" Joy. No, she was not on display. I was told that the rifle might see commercial sales by year-end. Hope-hope.
5) Surefire has a new .260 Titanium suppressor out. Word is that it was developed for a certain buyer at Ft. Bragg and it is built for a bolt-action gun... Hmmmm. It was rumored that the SOCOM RC-2 was being phased-out, but that was denied by Surefire folks. Lots of new Surefire flashlights, some of them might be as bright as the light at the top of the Luxor Pyramid. :)
6) Scopes. This is the year for very high precision 1x scopes. The long awaited 1-8x grand dame from S&B was on display, as was the 1-6x from Steiner. Steiner also had two RAL8000 color "M" series scopes, one for general consumption and another with NSN markings that nobody at Steiner seemed to know or want to tell what gun that was contracted with. Steiner also featured their 1-4X "P" series, which looked like one heck of a scope, and priced around $600, so a great buy. Primary Arms, is also in the 1x game with the Raptor 1-6X ACSS. I suppose you could call this a Gen IV, but what I really love is the name. It is spit in the eye of Vortex's Strike Eagle. For those who are not USAF buffs, the F-22 is the Raptor, which is now the Air Force's main fighter attack aircraft, a generation beyond the F-15 Strike Eagle.
Well, that is it for today's update. Hope to be with you tomorrow.