That being said, Most of the major manufacturers were disappointing in they had little that was new or revolutionary some of it was down right crap catering to tacti-cool instead of practical and useful. Most of the new, innovative products came from small shops that will be highlighted in other posts.
In light of that, here are some cool items from various manufacturers.
Browning introduced a new 1911. The 1911 - .380. It is a 2/3 size 1911 chambered in .380. This is a re-chambering of their 2/3 size .22 that has been out for years.
This is a neat product I want to check out in more detail myself. It sits well in the hand, it a little larger than the standard pocket .380, but smaller than a full size gun.
I think it will do well as a concealed carry gun or as a fun range toy, even as training gun for new shooters who may not be able to hold onto a fullsize 1911 in .45.
Check it out, it is a cute little gun and I have high hopes for it.
Ruger came out with a long list of new items for 2015. Some items are very interesting.
1. BX-25 trigger assembly for the 10/22 rifles. One of the big problems with the standard 10/22 rifle is the trigger. It sucks. Normally you call Volquartsen and buy one of their custom triggers, but those are $250 dollars and not very cost effective unless you are building a custom precision 10/22. In comes the BX-25 trigger. This is a factory produced trigger that gives you a 2.5 - 3.5 pound trigger with a crisp, clean break. All for $90. Much better value than Volquartsen.
I look forward to checking this out for my 10/22.
2. Trigger for the AR-15 rifle. Ruger has introduced their own trigger for the AR15 rifle. The sample I tried was very nice. If you are looking for a trigger upgrade for your AR, Ruger now gives you an option.
3. 10/22 Charger pistol. Ruger has brought the Charger 10/22 pistol back but in a take-down version. Combine this with the new BX-25 trigger assembly and you have a nice little .22 pistol that breaks down and is very back-packable.
4. LCR revolver now in 9mm. Normally this polymer frame snub-nose revolver comes in .38 special and .357. Now Ruger has chambered it in the popular 9mm cartridge.
It uses a moon clip to allow the cases to be easily ejected.
If you already shoot a 9mm pistol and want to try a snub-nose revolver but don't want to buy/reload for a different caliber, now's your chance. Check out the LCR in 9mm.
5. LCP .380 pistol with improved trigger and better sites. One of the problems with the LCP pistol is the uncomfortable trigger and crappy sights. Ruger has now fixed these issues.
You might want to reconsider the Ruger LCP with these upgrades.
6. LC9 pistol - Now the favorite LC9 pistol comes with the option of a manual safety.
7. Synthetic stock for the Ruger Scout rifle. This less expensive polymer stock replaces the heavier wood laminate stock but also lowers the cost of the rifle.
8. Wood laminate stock with adjustable length of pull now available in the 77 series bolt action rifles.
The length of pull is adjusted through the use of spacers. Similar to what is used on the Scout rifle.
9. Bearcat .22 revolver now has optional adjustable sights.
1. Chassis system for the MVP line of bolt action rifles. This was a common theme for SHOT 2015, many manufacturers were putting their bolt action rifles into chassis systems and this included Mossberg. This is good for target shooters as you can choose your grip and buttstock to semi-customize the rifle to fit you. And get the benefits of a fully free-floated barrel and the ability to add tacti-dodads such as lights or other optics such as night vision.
2. Fiber optic peep sight for their shotguns. Very need and easy to see sights if you are looking for better sights for your shotgun.
IWI: The makers of the Tavor. (www.IWI.us)
1. IWI has reintroduced the Galil rifle. The Galil Ace. For those who don't know what a Galil is, it is an Israeli designed/built AK-47 rifle. So whats the big deal, it's just another AK right? Nope, the Galil is an AK-47 built right. The Galil Ace now fixes many of the ergonomic short comings of the original Galil without sacrificing quality or accuracy.
If you love the AK platform of rifles and want something that has better ergonomics and ability to attach optics and lights and other tacti-dodads, look at the IWI Galil. It just may be what you are looking for.
1. Short stroke hammer system on cowboy revolvers. This system is primarily designed for the mounted cowboy shooters who need to hold onto their guns while riding. The hammer is shorter and wider and the cocking stroke has been reduced to make it easier to cock the gun.
It does eliminate the safety notch, but this is not a problem as competitors only load 5 rounds in the gun anyway.
2. Possible octagon barrel on their revolvers. This is not officially in the catalog, but it should be. Please pester Cimarron to add this to the lineup. The octagon barrel is very sexy.
Winchester Ammunition: www.winchester.com
1. .17 WSM (Winchester Short Magnum)
A couple of years ago, Winchester introduced a new rimfire cartridge aimed at giving varmint hunters closer to centerfire performance while still using the rimfire package.
In comes the 17 WSM. It fires a 20 grain bullet at 3000 feet per second or a 25 grain bullet at 2600 feet per second. Think of it as a 17 HMR on steroids.
This additional velocity should extend your effective range to 200-300 yards with a flatter trajectory and more energy (400 Ft-Lbs at muzzle, 200 Ft-Lbs at 200 yards) than the standard 17 HMR or .22 Magnum cartridges.
If you are looking for more power out of your rimfire, then take a look at the 17 WSM.
I am now seeing the ammunition show up in stores. Pricing is approximately $16-$20 per box of 50 rounds. Not outrageous giving the power and performance. If you want more performance you are stuck going to a centerfire round.