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Reconnaissance report from the SHOT Show

New weapons for collectors, reenactors and historic shooters
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Perhaps the most compelling item of the show was the upcoming MP-40 in .22 from GSG, which will be distributed in the United States by API. A special edition with the collector’s box will likely be introduced next year.

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By Peter Suciu

January's SHOT Show isn’t SOS or the MAX Show. It is larger, taking up several halls of convention space in the Sands Convention Center in Las Vegas. This is the Shooting, Hunting, and Outdoor Trade Show – and as the name implies this show is so much more than a “gun show.”

The first and most notable aspect is that there is actually very little individual selling going on, nor are there the traditional “tables.” Instead, the major players of the industry, including Colt, Remington, Smith & Wesson and Glock, offer large booths showing upcoming products and new offerings.

The SHOT Show is actually a trade event, although the average visitor can still attend, and is sponsored by the National Shooting Sport Foundation. This event attracts gun shop owners, firearms dealers and even police and military dealers from around the world. Thus, this isn’t the show to find that great deal on a vintage Mauser rifle or hunt down old parts.

The key word of the SHOT Show is new, as in upcoming. Yet, this doesn’t mean the show is just about the latest M16 and M4 clones, nor, as the name implies, is this just a “hunters” convention. The show is almost like part mega-gun store, part museum and certainly the place for gun owners of all walks of life to get to talk and network. There was are also plenty of items that would be of interest to militaria collectors, re-enactors and historic shooters.

After moving around the country in recent years, the SHOT Show is once again back in Las Vegas for the foreseeable future. More importantly what happens in Vegas at the SHOT Show won’t stay in Vegas. Here is a look at the show’s highlights.:

Blue Guns also offers solid plastic scale replicas for training of most currently available small arms, such as the Uzi shown here. These are available in blue, as well as in black, and therefore are a good alternative for uniform displays.

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German Sport Guns (GSG) has introduced many .22 versions of popular small arms, including a close version of the H&K MP5 and AK-47. For 2012 the company looks to introduce a .22 version of the World War II MP-40 and StG44/MP-44.

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While not technically a military gun, “Dirty Harry’s” .44 Magnum was on display as part of The American Entertainment Armories Association, which is looking to make it easier for U.S. companies to continue to provide services for future film projects.

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MSA was on hand to show their ACH (Advanced Combat Helmet), which is currently being used by the U.S. Military around the world. This shows how the helmet could stand up to modern small arms.

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The DPM version of the famous Soviet Red Army DP-28 light machine gun, now available in semi-auto, yet still fires the same 7.62x54mmR rounds as its World War II counterpart.

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A museum quality reproduction of the 1877 Bulldog Gatling Gun from the U.S. Armament Corp. This fully operational “machine gun” will be capable of firing 1000 rpm via the hand crank operation.

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The semi-automatic Thompson submachine guns have been around for a long time, but now there is a new “sport” from ZootShooters, who dress in 1920s-1930s costumes and take part in shooting competitions.

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Ohio Ordnance Works Inc. showcased its Browning Automatic Rifle, a new semi-automatic version built on original World War I and World War II parts.

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Century Arms is introducing a new AK74 bullpup semi-auto rifle (5.45x39mm), while the company expects to discontinue importation of the older 7.62x39mm bullpup model.

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Blue Guns offered a range of scale replicas for training purposes, including the rather interesting RPG-7.

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