Times Spent Outdoors: Priceless!

39th Annual SHOT Show ® 2017

This show is for trade only and is not open to the public, but Western Outdoor Times writers John and Margie Anderson, who are both members of the Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA), will be at both the Range Day and at the Show, and will be sending daily updates from the show on the latest equipment and news.

The SHOT Show ® is owned and sponsored by the National Shooting Sports Foundation http://nssf.org/, a trade association for the firearms, ammunition, hunting, and shooting sports industry. SHOT stands for Shooting, Hunting, and Outdoor Trades. This year, the show is taking place at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas January 17-20. Industry Day at the Range will be held Monday, January 16 at the Boulder City Rifle and Pistol Club. This even is invitation only.

Exhibitors, buyers, media and other industry professionals from all 50 states and 100 countries will be in attendance, and this year there are over 1,600 exhibitors. It is the largest event held at the Sands Expo and Convention Center – total space for the 2017 show is expected to be more than 630,000 square feet. That's more than the area covered by the New Orleans Superdome or the base of the Great Pyramid at Giza.

Attendees will walk 12.5 miles of aisles. The total weight of the exhibits for the 2016 SHOT Show brought in by Freeman, the SHOT Show's general service contractor, exceeded 6,600,000 pounds, one of the heaviest shows ever held at the Sands Expo Center.

Firearms and ammunition are a $6.7 billion industry (2015). The total economic impact of the industry is more than $49 billion, which supports nearly 288,000 jobs. The SHOT Show generates millions of the dollars in revenue that funds NSSF programs and services that help "promote, protect and preserve" hunting and the shooting sports. Among those programs are Project ChildSafe, the industry's firearm safety education program; Don't Lie for the Other Guy, which works to help prevent illegal straw purchases; and First Shots, which provides introductions to target shooting. See http://www.nssf.org for more information on NSSF programs and member services.

Shot Show Industry Day at the Range 2017 by John and Margie Anderson

Industry Day at the Range is extremely popular - with over 200 manufacturers exhibiting, and over 500,000 rounds of ammunition fired, it provides hands-on experience with all the new products that you just can't get anywhere else. Here are some of our favorites.

When you first walk through the gates at Industry Day at the Range, hearing and eye protection are free for the taking. But Peltor Sport was just around the corner, offering to lend electronic ear protection for the day, and we were quick to take him up on the offer. Pelter's new Sport Smart Tactical 300/Tactical 500 models automatically adjust to your environment and your firearm. They work absolutely fantastically. Even in the bays where they were firing elephant guns, the Peltor muffs worked flawlessly - but we could still hear each other talking. Highly recommend.

If you shoot an AR, you probably already know how fast you blow through even a 30-round magazine. Then you have to reload. The MagPump is the fastest way to reload mags that I've seen. You simply dump ammo in the hopper, insert a magazine, and start working the MagPump. You can load thirty rounds in thirty seconds. They make an unloader as well, and the pumps come with one, or you can buy it alone for around $30. The MagPumps come in two models - one is $189 and one is $389.

Predator Warpaint calls itself bulletproof sunscreen with superior SPF 50 protection. They have both camo face paint for hunters and transparent mineral sunscreen that goes on clear, is water resistant for 80 minutes, and made in the USA. The camo paint is scent free and hypoallergenic and the colors won't bleed even if you're sweating. They stay on for 4+ hours for those long hunts. There's even a mirror under the lid that you can use in survival situations or just to signal your hunting buddies, and the paints come right off with soap and water.

Swab-Its are durable lint-free foam swabs for cleaning your guns, printers, fiber optics - you name it. They fit into all the little nooks and crannies, and they are washable and reusable. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes to fit just about any need. They're made in the USA.

Swagger bipods are awesome - the system fits under the stock of your rifle, and the bipod legs fit inside. Once you pull them out, they telescope out so you can use them prone, sitting, or standing. But the best part is the flexible joints on those legs that lets you get the stability of a bipod, but still allows you to maneuver. You can swing right or left, lower and raise,

With the push of a button, it transforms from full flex to rigid legs, just like a traditional bipod. On the field model, the legs telescope to 29-1/4 inches, and on the treestand/groundblind model they go out to 41-1/2 inches. Prices are $220 and $230, respectively. These things are awesome.

Honor Defense pistols are amazing. We all know how difficult some guns are to disassemble - but not these. The guy at the Honor Defense bay asked me if I'd buy him a beer if he could disassemble and reassemble the gun in less than a minute, and I jokingly said "blindfolded?". And he did it! 40 seconds flat, blindfolded! These pistols are amazing - you've got to check them out. Their latest is the FIST: Firearm with Integrated STandoff. Under the barrel, the frame extends out with a serrated end, making it possible to use the gun to fight someone off without being lethal.

All of these guns are made with domestic materials and stainless steel parts machined in the USA, and the guns are all assembled and test-fired by veterans. I know what my next gun is going to be!

Another amazing new gun is the Hudson, by Hudson Mfg. The H9 took three years to perfect, and it combines striker fired reliability with a 1911-style single-axis trigger. It's basically the best of both worlds, and the best new thing we saw at the range. It's got a 15+1 capacity and all steel construction. Pretty sure this one is going to make some waves.


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