SHOT Show 2011: A roundup of some great new stuff

I’m still digesting all of the great products and people I got to see during my adventure at SHOT Show 2011 in Las Vegas a couple of months ago. I will have plenty of products to talk about over the next year, and this is just one in what will be a long line of columns on the stuff I saw and did at SHOT 2011.

Most of our readers have figured out that I enjoy my days on the shooting range. The most impressive thing I tried on the range at SHOT this year was not necessarily a law enforcement product, but my observations should impact law enforcement. SureFire had their new 22a (aluminum), which has a titanium backplate, and 22s (steel) Suppressor on the range. One was mounted on a pistol, the other was on a Ruger SR 22 carbine. I shot the carbine with the 2.25 oz 22a Suppressor.

I pulled the trigger a couple of times. There were a couple of holes in the center of the target but I did not feel the gun shoot or the action operate. I thought it had malfunctioned. Rather than perform a clearing drill, I pulled the trigger again. Another hole appeared on the target. I looked around to see if anyone else was firing on my target. No one was even firing on the range. I fired a couple of more shots in rapid succession.

I was shooting a carbine that was literally quieter than an air rifle. The recoil was so unnoticeable, I thought something was wrong. The guys on the range commented that everyone who shoots this gun for the first time checks to see if it is working. It was quiet, smooth and recoil free. I learned later that the already quiet action was mitigated by a Buffer Technologies recoil buffer designed for this package.

What is the law enforcement application? Well, there really isn’t a viable law enforcement use for a 22 Long rifle. However, there is certainly a viable law-enforcement use for a suppressor that can reduce sound to this degree and weigh so little. The extra benefit is usually a little recoil reduction from the suppressor.

The other viable part of the equation comes from using Buffer Technologies parts. You see, when a carbine is suppressed, the slap of the action cycling is still loud enough (around 100 decibels) that the user requires hearing protection. A buffer may reduce this slightly. A good high quality set up can really take some of the edge from the sound of the carbine.

Action Target
Action Target had a card stock target on a target stand on display. I know this doesn't sound like much to get excited about, except this product has some water and tear resistance, will hold up better in a strong wind, and they are less expensive than standard targets. Bullets on card stock cut cleaner holes. I do firearms qualifications and this is big.

Chad Burdette of Action Target told me that they can do custom printing with a minimum order. The sample targets they were handing out were mini B-27’s. I would like to have a case of them, please.

I shot two of the five new PDX1 Defender cartridges that Winchester rolled out, the .357 SIG and the 60 grain .223 with the new split core design (SCT). I put the 125 grain .357 SIG rounds through a Springfield XD.

Winchester lists the S357SPDB .357 SIG cartridge at 1350 fps, which is right where I like my 125 grain cartridges to perform. They are controlled expansion bullets, necessary for screamers like this one. Otherwise, they tend to shed jackets or over penetrate.

CAA Tactical RONI
Yes, I shot a RONI G1. This is the set up that encases a Glock and turns it into a short barred rifle. There are other RONI models which encase other handguns for non-Glock converts. I have mixed emotions about the application, but it was definitely fun to shoot. Glocks are inherently accurate. This device simply encloses the handgun and adds a stock and forend. It allows one to add platform devices like dedicated lights and optics. I rocked the range steel with this thing.

Kimber did it again with a 17 oz 6+1 pmm called the Solo. I didn’t get to shoot this micro-compact, but I will soon. It has some features similar to a 1911, except it has been radiused to go in the pocket.

Elite Survival Systems
I stopped by to see Bryan Bogue of Elite Survival Systems. I was looking to see the new holster offerings. Instead, he showed me a very big holster for carbines. This is the kind of stuff I liked to have while in a patrol car. The Elite M4 Roller, model 9001,is a large case which fits inside a patrol car trunk, has handles on all sides for a two person lift and rolls like a piece of luggage.

It’s a great way to carry a couple of carbines and all the right bug out equipment. This is a heavy duty case with a hard bottom and semi-rigid sides. It’s designed with call out gear in mind and has very usable details like map pockets on the top and plenty of places for full magazines and lunch.

Spyderco C36 TIF
Everyone produces black-on-black knives for tactical use. During SHOT Show 2011, I looked at more than a dozen new products. When I sat down with Kristi Hunter of Spyderco, she brought out a satin finish knife with a corrugated titanium handle along with the other black knives. It was configured similar to the original Spyderco C36 military, the icon of uniform services knives.

I started to say “what’s up with this?” as I picked it up. Wow! This knife has a Reeve integral lock, where a flexible strip of frame pops into place behind the extended blade. This action is inherently rigid and adds to the elegance of the package. It had a slightly different balance, resulting from the titanium appointments.

There are three things about the C36 TIF that sealed the deal for me. First, each knife scale is unique, simply because the purple cast titanium comes out differently every time one is made. Second, the lock action is one of the smoothest I saw during SHOT and I could open and close it one-handed. Third, this is a Spyderco 14mm Round Hole model, meaning a gloved officer can use it. Beautiful.

Gerber’s Paul Kilgore showed me their new HFR-M, a simple multipurpose light. It consists of a knuckle with 4 task-specific lenses around a post, which can take either a CR123 or AA battery. The ability to take two different types of cells is a patented feature. This task light is only 2.99 inches tall and weighs 3.9 oz. It was designed to mount on MOLLE or a helmet.

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