Another year, another SHOT Show has passed. Now it’s time to name our top five picks from SHOT 2016.
Aimpoint has a new 6XMag-1 that was specifically designed for use with Aimpoint’s Micro T-2 and Micro H-2 red dot sights. This module gives professional users enhanced capability for long-range aiming and observation. A variable (-3 to +3) dioptric setting allows the magnifier to be adapted to the individual operator’s eye.
The 6XMag-1 can also be used as a handheld 6X monocular. It uses the red dot in Aimpoint sights as the aiming reticle, eliminating the need for re-zeroing when shifting between non-magnified and magnified aiming, according to Aimpoint officials.
The 6XMag-1 is encased in a shock absorbing protective rubber cover that also creates an ideal ergonomic grip. Internal optical adjustments make aligning the magnifier and sight quick and easy, according to Aimpoint officials.
Beretta showed off a new PX4 Compact Carry, an improved version of the Beretta 9mm PX4 Storm Compact inspired by firearms trainer Earnest Langdon.
Langdon, a paid consultant for Beretta, set out to fix what he didn't like on the PX4 Compact.
“The safety levers are too big, the slide stop is bigger than it needs to be and the grip's really slick," Langdon said at SHOT Show's Jan. 18 range day.
Langdon said he purchased the PX4 and began working on it before approaching Beretta on the improvements. The new version features low-profile safety levers and slide stop to make the gun more narrow for concealed carry. It has an improved trigger pull, a larger magazine-release button, high-visibility night sights and Talon wrap-around grips for more secure handling.
The slide on the new PX4 Compact Carry also features a new, gray Cerakote finish.
Springfield Armory’s new SOCOM 16 CQB rifle. The updated SOCOM 16 features a six-position AR-style stock and Magpul M-LOC attachment system in several places for mounting accessories.
"It makes it a very handy rifle for being a pretty-lightweight, pistol grip in .308," said Jon Yackapraro of Springfield Armor.
I had never fired one of these compact 7.62mm rifles, but I immediately liked it.
It feels very lightweight and compact, despite weighing just over nine pounds. I am partial to the traditional M1A-style stock, but the pistol grip stock felt very natural.
The new SOCOM 16 CQB is available with iron sights and an optional Iron Clip Guide Red Dot Mount w/ Vortex Venom Red Dot optic.
Raven Concealment’s new Balor mount is designed for securing the Aimpoint Micro T1 or H1 red-dot sight on Glock pistols with only a few simple tools.
Many red-dot sights require the slide to be milled out and they are attached with screws that go from top to bottom.
"The tricky part about a Micro is the screws go from bottom to top; you have to be able to come from the bottom," Matt Jacques, firearms instructor and consultant for Raven Concealment, said Tuesday at SHOT Show 2016.
"With the Balor mount, you mount it to the actual fixture itself and then place it on the gun."
To secure the Balor Mount, you remove the back plate and tap the rear sight out, Jacques said.
SilencerCo turned heads with its latest prototype of the Maxim 9, a futuristic-looking 9mm pistol that sort of resembles the gun from the "RoboCop" movies.
"This is the world's first integrally suppressed 9mm handgun that is hearing safe with all types of 9mm ammunition," Jason Schauble, a marketing official for the company, said at range day at the Boulder Rifle & Pistol Club outside Vegas. "It's definitely the coolest thing you'll see this week. I guarantee it."
Designers indeed looked to futuristic science-fiction movies for ideas, including "RoboCop" and "Judge Dredd," but ultimately settled on a unique design with a thick, rectangular front end and the operating mechanism in the rear of the weapon, Shauble said.
"I've got a 3.5-inch fixed barrel, so it's still accurate -- I can still get the velocity I need," he said. "But I've got as much room up front to suppress the actual noise."
When asked what makes the design unique, Schauble said, "People have done intergrally-supressed pistols before -- the Chinese, the Russians -- but they did it with a .32-caliber cartridge, which is not going to kill anything, or it's a you-can-only-use-this-bullet, right? -- I can only use a subsonic, light round, at 20 feet in close range or something like that. So we made it so I can use 124-grain-plus-p-plus jacketed hollow point, which is the loudest 9mm pistol cartridge in this configuration."
The weapon uses Glock magazines and can accommodate any type of after-market sights, he said. While a previous prototype was unveiled at a product launch event in September, this second version is "much closer to what our final iteration will look like," he said.