Gerber’s $700 Knife
Gerber’s big knife for 2014 is made out of a solid piece of new steel called S35VN. This means the blade should hold its edge longer and be more resistant to corrosion. The Legend comes with a well-built leather sheath that features a solid safety strap. But these features are going to cost you … a lot. The knife will retail for about $700.
**Red Label Resurrected **
To the disappointment of Ruger fans, the Red Label was dropped from the market due to high production costs a few years ago. Now the company is bringing back a new, improved version of the gun at a reduced price. The shotgun now retails for about $1,400 and actually has better internal mechanics. Ruger has cut costs by redesigning the the receiver and instituting a more efficient manufacturing method. We expect the Red Label to make a successful comeback.
The Swedish Morakniv is as sharp as a razor. The clip-point blade is anodized to prevent rusting and the handle is made of injection-molded polypropylene and provides a positive grip. It comes with a sturdy sheath and an incredible price of only $80. We dare you to find a better all-around knife for the money.
Versa Max Waterfowl Pro
The original Versa Max is a great waterfowl gun, but this year Remington is looking to make it even better. Borrowing some features from the tactical version of the Versa Max, Remington added an extended bolt handle, an oversized bolt release, and an extra-large safety for easier operation with heavy gloves. Add these features to a shotgun that already does a good job of cutting down on felt recoil and has an adjustable stock for different shooting conditions, and you’ve got a duck and goose gun that’s tough to beat in adverse weather.
New Ruger Rimfire
The Ruger American rifle stormed into the market last year as an accurate, durable rifle for a bargain price. For 2014, Ruger is introducing a rimfire .22 version with a variety of features that include a rotary magazine, a fiber optic front site, a good trigger, and interchangeable butts. The gun comes in a standard version (shown in the video) and a compact version. The best feature on this gun might be the price: $250.
Franchi model–and hard core hunter–Whitney Isenhart did us the favor of posing with the new Intensity semiautomatic 12 gauge. The Intensity is the big brother to the Affinity, which has made a good name as a very shootable and affordable semiauto. The Intensity is a 3.5-inch gun with the same inertia-driven system that the Affinity utilizes and the same high-step rib. The Intensity receiver is grooved for scope mounting for all those turkey hunters and deer hunters who want an optics option. It will retail for about $1,099.
**Petzal on the Montana Marksman Rifle **
What with long range being all the rage, there is no shortage of tactical rifles, but this is one of the less weird, more versatile ones. The MMR can serve as a beanfield gun, terminate the careers of coyotes, compete in F-Class matches … or even shoot tactically. The MMR is based on Montana’s greasy-slick, unstoppable rotary-extractor action and is equipped with a 24-inch, fluted, Montana #6 contour barrel with a removable muzzle brake. The stock is target-style and can be adjusted for comb height and length of pull. Instead of the classic Model 70 trigger, which is standard for Montana, they use a Timney which can be set at 2 ½ pounds. Calibers include .308, .260 Remington, 6.5/284, .300 Win Mag (if is isn’t in the lineup, whine at them and they’ll build one) and a special version in .338 Lapua. All the metal is Cerakoted in case you want to shoot in the rain, sleet, and snow. You’re welcome. Weight is 12 pounds, and mine, which has a big Nightforce scope on it, weighs 15. It’s worth noting that because of its weight and excellent ergonomics, the MMR is one of two rifles I own that I can hold absolutely dead steady. The price is $2,295. My MMR, a 6.5/284, will put five rounds in 3 inches at 600 yards. I think that’s worth just under three grand. -David E. Petzal, Rifles Editor
**Hurteau on the Bushnell Trophy Cam HD Wireless **
Bushnell’s feature-packed and hugely popular Trophy Cam HD can now text and email thumbnail photos to your smartphone, tablet, or computer in real time, as in “Holy s–t, Big Ten just crossed the south meadow heading towards my ladder stand. Gotta go!” This is not the first wireless (or cellular) trail camera. It’s the first network-approved one, which makes all the difference because it makes it easy. There’s no need to hack a SIM card (it’s included), no contracts to sign (you buy data straight from Bushnell on a pay-as-you-go basis), and the company gives you unlimited thumbnail images for the first 30 days. All you do is enter the serial number into a website, download an app, and just like that you can not only view images remotely, but also change the setting on the camera. In short, it’s the first hassle-free, ready-for-the-woods, show-me-real-time-pics-of-my-bucks-right-now camera. ($599; bushnell.com) – Dave Hurteau, Deputy Editor
ThermaCELL Heated Insoles
The Heated Insoles from ThermaCELL aren’t exactly new–but they’re newly improved. ThermaCELL has made a couple of big improvements: First, the insoles are much more flexible; they also feel softer and more comfortable. Second, they’ve eliminated the hard-to-reach on/off switch and replaced it with removable batteries–one in each heel–that are on automatically on standby once they’re installed. (You activate the insoles with a small remote control.) The Heated Insoles come with a battery charger that you can plug into a wall or anything that accepts a USB. A fully charged pair of Heated Insoles will last five hours. I used a pair of the first-generation Heated Insoles on a whitetail hunt in Saskatchewan, and they were terrific. Now that ThermaCELL has made them more comfortable and easier to charge, I’m looking forward testing them again–even if it means I have to spend a few days in the bitter cold. -Colin Kearns, Deputy Editor
Sitka Blizzard Jacket
I had this jacket on for maybe one minute before I started to feel a sweat coming on. Sitka’s new Blizzard jacket (and Bib Pant) is bombproof. Underneath the three-layer Gore-Tex shell is a new insulated blend of down/synthetic fibers from PrimaLoft. The Blizzard is waterproof, windproof, breathable, and winter’s worst nightmare.
Believe or not, we managed to find a bit of fishing gear on the SHOT Show floor. The new Splizzors multi-tool from Buck would be a valuable addition to the tackle box of any angler who fishes with braided line, because the scissor blades (which are replaceable once they’ve dulled) are designed to snip the often hard-to-snip line. The tool also has pliers for removing hooks, large and small split-shot crimps, and (most importantly) a bottle opener.
Winchester Model 73
Behold: The Gun That Won the West. There’s not much else that needs to be said about this classic rifle–other than it’s magnificent and iconic and now available to hunters and collectors. The barrel is 20 inches–just like the original–and the gun is available in 357 Mag/38 spl., 44-40 Win., and 45 Colt. I’ve given myself a new New Year’s resolution, which is that I want to kill a deer with this gun this fall. -Colin Kearns, Deputy Editor
Case Leather Hunter
The knife isn’t new, but the handle is. Case now offers the option of leather handles to its Hunter series. The leather feels wonderful in hand–speaking of which, they’re assembled by hand–and will only get handsomer as a patina develops with use. The Hunter series features a variety of blade styles and lengths, and each knife comes with a leather sheath.
As the SHOT Show grinds along in the Sans Expo Center in Las Vegas, our editors are combing the floor to bring you highlights. In past years, the show has been filled with gimmicky products and only a few meaningful introductions. But this year, manufacturers big and small have come out with tons of intriguing new guns and gear. Here’s what caught our eye on day 2.