Products For Review After SHOT

I received in the mail this week two products on which I’ll be doing reviews in the future.

The first is called the EndoSnake. It is a lighted, fiber optic borescope device that allows you to examine the condition of your barrel. What makes this one interesting is that it is small enough to fit down the barrel of an AR-15 or similar rimfire firearm.

It runs off of a PC as well as your Android/IOS devices. In a quick test using my PC, I had no problem threading it down the barrel of a .22 LR rifle.

The other product I received is a speed loader for Glock 9mm/.40 S&W magazines. It is from a Michigan company called American Speedloaders. I ran into the people running the company at the Pop-Up Expo at SHOT. I had a long conversation about the product with Sam Palmeter who founded the company this week.

It reverses the way most speed loaders work. Instead pressing down on the spring from the top and then putting in the cartridge, here you insert the cartridge in the loader and then push the magazine into the loader.

While this speed loader is designed specifically for the Glock, I intend to try it with other double stack magazines as well as extended magazines like those for the Glock 18.

I will make short videos using these products to go along with the review.

Home. I Am!

I know that they call New York City “the city that never sleeps.” It applies equally as well to Las Vegas.

My flight home was at 6:05am so I left for the airport a bit after 4am. There were a ton of people out and about the MGM Grand at that time of the morning. Some were doing the walk of shame, some were drunk, some were hardcore gamblers, and some must have just been night people.

My Lyft driver Amanda was quite pleased to know I was an airport fare. She said at that time of the morning she either got drunks or people heading to the airport.

The flights home on Southwest were uneventful in terms of turbulence and I was able to get an aisle seat on both legs. My first leg was noteworthy but more on that later.

I enjoy the SHOT Show but it is great to get home. Sleeping in your own bed with your own pillow is the key to a restful night’s sleep for me. That and having the Complementary Spouse next to me. I think I was asleep by 9:30 last night. There are people that are “road warriors” who travel constantly for work. They have my admiration for their ability to do it because I know I sure could not do it.

Now back to the first leg of the trip home. Southwest Airlines had routed me from Las Vegas to Baltimore and from there on to Greenville-Spartanburg. When I arrived at the gate in Las Vegas I noticed there were a number of passengers wearing paper surgical masks. I didn’t think too much about it at the time since it is a common practice for many Asians. It turns out most were part of a Chinese group of tourists.

About an hour and a half into the flight I noticed the flight attendants checking on a passenger many rows in front of me. I didn’t think much about it. Then they started passing out paper surgical masks along with alcohol wipes to those around that passenger. They later offered them to anyone who wanted them.

We landed and then stopped short of the gate. They announced that they had a sick passenger and were waiting on health officials to meet us. Below is a picture of what I saw outside the window. There were multiple ambulances, fire department vehicles, and other emergency vehicles.

The captain came on the PA, explained the situation, and said he was just being extra cautious. He later went on to say we were free to leave once we got off the plane.

After about 20-30 minutes, health officials escorted the passenger and his wife off the plane. Then the head of the BWI Emergency Department announced that the passenger was being taken to a local hospital for testing as he had recently been in Beijing, China. He went on to say there was a very small chance that it was coronavirus and we would be notified by Southwest if the passenger tested positive.

Finally, before we were allowed to deplane, they had the tour group leader who spoke both English and Mandarian explain the situation in Mandarian to the Chinese tour group. They were to remain on the plane for a special briefing.

As we got off the plane, paramedics squirted our hands with hand sanitizer. I did speak to one of the paramedics who said they were just being overly cautious about the situation given the spread of coronavirus in China.

Needless to say, we made the news.

From NBC Nightly News:

The story also made the Baltimore Sun, the Washington Post, and all the local TV stations in Baltimore and Washington. It also made the news in Las Vegas.

The Maryland Department of Health said the passenger did not meet the CDC criteria for coronavirus testing.

This afternoon, a passenger arrived on a flight from Las Vegas to BWI who showed flu-like symptoms and had recently traveled from Beijing, China.

The person did not meet the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention criteria for 2019 novel coronavirus testing but was referred to a medical facility for evaluation to determine whether additional follow-up was necessary. Per guidance from the CDC, no special action was indicated for this person or for any other passengers or crew on the flight. 

Following evaluation by medical personnel, the person was released.

The passenger was previously screened and cleared in Mexico and Las Vegas.

Southwest released this statement:

Local medical personnel met Flight 2889 once it arrived at the Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport from Las Vegas due to reports of an ill Customer. Out of an abundance of caution, and in light of the recent concerns of the coronavirus, our Crew followed recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control for responding to concerns to ensure the Customer, and those traveling with them, receive the assistance or support they may need.

Frankly, I’m very glad that they took it seriously and didn’t just slough it off.

As to the other leg of the trip to GSP, the plane was half full so everyone was encouraged to spread out. There were a handful of people on that flight who had been on the previous leg and who also had attended the SHOT Show.

DC Project Brings Attention To Women Gun Owners At SHOT Show

The DC Project held a rally yesterday at the Fiocchi booth. It featured many of the women of the DC Project who were attending the SHOT Show. My guesstimate on the number of women wearing teal DC Project shirts was over 50.

From DC Project Facebook Page

This rally attracted the attention of the local Las Vegas media. The focus of the report was on women becoming involved in both armed self-protection and the shooting sports.

Dianna Muller, championship shooter and the founder of the DC Project, and California attorney Lara Smith were featured interviewees in the story.

While at the SHOT Show, I learned that there are plans to expand the DC Project. The goal is to recruit at least one woman in every Congressional district. The hope that these women will establish relationships with the local representative and become viewed as a resource on firearms issues.

Speaking of women at the SHOT Show, there were quite a number of women participating as buyers, exhibitors, and media. Yes there were a few “booth babes” but the number continues to decrease each and every year. This is good news for the industry as it realizes that women are a growing market that needs to be shown the respect they deserve.

Debney Out at AOBC/Smith & Wesson On Eve Of SHOT Show

James Debney, CEO and President of American Outdoor Brands, was dismissed by the Board of Directors today. He had been slated to be the CEO of the American Outdoor Brands sporting goods segment when the company splits later this year.

From The Guardian

From the news release:

American Outdoor Brands Corporation, today announced that its Board of Directors has named Mark P. Smith and Brian D. Murphy as co-Presidents and co-Chief Executive Officers of American Outdoor Brands Corp., effective immediately.   Smith was most recently President of the Manufacturing Services Division of the company, while Murphy was most recently President of the Outdoor Products & Accessories Division.  In their co-leadership roles, Smith and Murphy succeed James Debney, who has separated as President and Chief Executive Officer and as a Director of the company, following the determination by the Board of Directors that he engaged in conduct inconsistent with a non-financial company policy.

The “inconsistent” conduct was not specified in the release.

Mark Smith was already slated to head the new Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc. after the spin-off.

Brian Murphy is now going to become the CEO and President of American Outdoor Brands, Inc. after the company is split into a sporting goods segment and a firearms segment.

Coming just before SHOT Show starts in less than a week, this is an interesting development.

The new release goes on to quote the Chairman of the Board Barry Monheit as saying:

We appreciate James’ contributions toward the growth and development of our company and its infrastructure.  The Board believes the company is fortunate to have two highly capable and experienced leaders in Mark Smith and Brian Murphy.  Each has played a critical role in the development of our strategic plans, including our intention to establish each business as an independent, publicly traded company.  In addition, Mark and Brian have each demonstrated, through years of leadership and service, their extensive knowledge of and passion for our company, our customers, and our industries.  Their capabilities and objectives position them well to share the combined CEO role as the team completes the separation of our two businesses later in 2020.  The Board has every confidence that they will provide the vision and determination to lead each independent company and its highly respected brand portfolio toward a successful future.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the spokesperson for the company did not provide any details on why Debney was fired beyond what is contained in the news release. Their article also takes note that the firing occurred just days before the SHOT Show was to begin.

Debney earned $3.76 million in compensation for the last year. Most of that compensation was due to bonuses and stock awards on top of his $750,000 salary.

Pre-SHOT Show Releases, Part 2

The FN Mk20 SSR and the civilian variant FN SCAR 20S have been out since 2016. They are the long range precision version of the SCAR-17 aka SCAR Heavy. They traditionally have been chambered in 7.62×51 NATO.

FN America has now released the FN SCAR 20S in 6.5 Creedmoor.

For 2020, FN announces new advancements in the legendary FN SCAR® 20S – now chambered in the superb long range cartridge: 6.5 Creedmoor. Perfectly calibrated for long-range precision fire, the FN SCAR® 20S in 6.5 Creedmoor gives you the ability to engage targets exceeding 1,000 yards with ease. The chrome lined barrel of new FN SCAR® 20S  will deliver precision accuracy with improved barrel life. The gas-operated piston design and Surefire ProComp 762 muzzle device manage recoil efficiently to improve follow-up shots and maintain target acquisition. Lending further aid is the match-grade, two-stage trigger that breaks crisply at 3.5-4.5 pounds, full-length MIL-STD 1913 rail at 12 o’clock position, and fixed buttstock providing adaptability to fit to each user’s needs through adjustable length of pull and cheek rest height.

The rifle will be available in both flat dark earth (FDE) and black.

The trigger is a Geissele 2-stage match trigger (Geissele Super SCAR). The 20 inch barrel is cold hammer-forged and chrome lined. The weight of the 6.5 CM SCAR 20S will come in at 11.6 pounds.

The price? MSRP is $4,499.

Pre-SHOT Show Releases, Part 1

The Colt “snake” revolvers are back. First, they released the Cobra a few years ago followed by the Black Cobra. Last year, Colt released the King Cobra. Yesterday, they announced the re-released of what for many was always a Holy Grail – the Colt Python .357 Magnum Revolver.

The Python 2020 will be available in both 6 inch and 4.25 inch versions. Both will have a MSRP of $1,499.00.

  • Barrel Description: 1:14 LH, 6 Groove
  • Barrel Length: 6 in.
  • Capacity: 6 rds.
  • Finish: Semi-Bright
  • Frame Material: Stainless Steel
  • Grips: Walnut Target Stocks
  • Height: 5.5 in.
  • Width: 1.55 in.
  • Overall Length: 11.5 in.
  • Weight: 46 oz.

The 4.25 inch version will be 4 oz. lighter and have an overall length of 9.75 inches.

The new Python is not the old Python. Changes have been made especially to the fire control parts.

From Ed Head who had the opportunity to fire the new Python 2020 at Gunsite back in November:

Back in November we had the pleasure of hosting Colt at Gunsite for a writer event, followed by a training class for Colt executives. They introduced the new Python, a stainless steel model available in 4″ and 6″ barrel lengths. The action has the smoothest DA trigger I have experienced in a factory revolver. They accomplished this by eliminating 12 parts from the old action and re-designing the internals. Dimensionally these revolvers are the same size as the previous models so grips, speed loaders and holsters are interchangeable.

As to why a blued version is not being released (yet), he wrote on Facebook:

The internals are CNC machined billet steel. Pretty much the rest of the revolver as well. Billet steel barrel. Whether you accept it or not, the reason they explained the blued model would be considerably more expensive is in order to meet the standards expected of a Colt Royal Blue revolver it would require a great deal of hand polishing and labor. BTW, as of mid-November they had a Python on a fixture running it double action and it was somewhere past 50,000 cycles without failing.

Colt released this video about the Python 2020 on YouTube yesterday.

SHOT Show Is Coming

The SHOT Show will start on January 21st in Las Vegas. It is the firearms industry’s annual trade show where they exhibit their wares to gun dealers, interested government purchasers, and the media.

Preceding the SHOT Show is Industry Day at the Range. Yehuda Remer (the PewPewJew), Shane Thurston, and I will be attending as a team.

If there is something you want us to try out at Range Day, let us know in the comments. With three people covering it, we should be able to get to most of the exhibitors.

Here is a list of SHOT Show exhibitors. If there is something from the main show that you would like us to check out, we’ll do our best.

With it being an election year and with the industry trying to come out of the “Trump Slump”, I anticipate there will be quite a number of new introductions. We have already seen Glock release their G-44 in .22 LR and Ruger release a number of new firearms including the Custom Shop Super GP100 Competition Revolver and a Custom Shop SR1911 Officer-style.