2014 was yet another interesting year for the shooting community. While we regained some of the sanity lost in 2013 with astronomical prices and negative product availability, we still had a slightly tumultuous adventure.
Let’s take a look, in no particular order, at some of the year’s highlights and lowlights.
Monkeys flew out of my butt on their way to Chicago!
I’d always joked that monkeys would fly out of my butt before the state of Illinois had concealed carry. Well, in 2014, the monkeys launched. Chicago, and the rest of the state, now has concealed carry. Sort of. There’s plenty of work yet to do as Rahm and Friends are trying their darnedest to make things difficult. I’ve even seen some of the actual permits!
The SHOT Show find-a-new-partner Jamboree!
In one of 2014’s biggest kerfuffles, the National Shooting Sports Foundation fired their longtime trade show vendor, Reed Exhibitions. The NSSF had good reason though. You see, Reed got all uppity about the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show and decided that they wouldn’t allow any display of “assault rifles.” Coming from a British company, that was pretty funny. Heck, we Americans don’t even know what assault rifles are, and to expect the folks who are actively banning kitchen knives to make rules about that, is, well, it’s just funny.
To make a long story short, the National Rifle Association took over the eastern show and now calls it the Great American Outdoors Show. Yeah ’Murrica! The NSSF announced that a mutual agreement was reached where Reed Exhibitions would “pursue different interests and spend more time with family and Piers Morgan.” Right. Regardless of the pubic relations fluff, I’m proud of the NSSF for sticking to their guns on this issue. Having a nanny company run SHOT Show and impose their hoplophobia on the premier industry event would have been silly. Next time you see an NSSF employee, thank them. Their decision to find and train a new vendor for such major show was bold and caused them a lot of late nights at the office.
Crimson Trace turned 20.
While still a year away from legal drinking age, the company hit the two decade milestone in 2014. If you want to mark the occasion, check out their 20th Anniversary Master Series Lasergrips.
Glock released its model 42 compact .380 ACP.
Too little too late? Or worth the wait? Seemingly years after everyone else figured out that folks want compact .380 pistols for personal protection., Glock entered the party. It’s a nice little gun to shoot and people are buying them like crazy, so I guess it’s never too late to offer a product people want.
Doubletap Ammo turned it up to 11.
The Godfather of Boom, Mike McNett of Doubletap Ammunition, continues to feel the need for speed. New to the lineup is the .450 SMC cartridge. Only available from Doubletap, this round uses a cut down .308 case (more or less), a small rifle magnum primer and standard .45 ACP projectiles to pump up your 1911. If your gun is OK for .45 ACP +P ammo, it’s OK for .450 SMC. How about a 230 grain .45 bullet moving at 1,135 feet per second? Or perhaps a 255 grain hard cast at 1,030 fps? Sounds like a great hog load to me.
Sheeple queued up in Connecticut.
The state of Connecticut’s new, and big-time draconian, gun laws took effect. As expected, a small minority of Connecticut gun owners started lining up outside of government offices to “register” their firearms and magazines. Hundreds of thousands of other Connecticutonians gave the finger next to the ring one and completely ignored the new, and quite unconstitutional, laws.
Start your 2015 off right with some shooting and reloading education at a great price!