2024 SHOT Show Roundup

SHOT Show 2024 was a great success, with an estimated 55,400+ industry professionals and 2,600+ companies participating in the festivities. Yours truly was there, putting in the work so we could provide you with a look at the latest and greatest in the revolver world. I’m sure I missed some things, because it’s hard to adequately cover the 13.9 miles of aisles solo, but I think I saw most of the highlights, and I’m excited to share them with you here.

THE VIBE

First, a few general observations about the show, itself. I think this was a year to normalize the SHOT Show experience again, and I was pleased to see everyone was back to “business as usual.”

After the cancellation of the 2021 show for the ChinaVirus, the 2022 show was a virtual ghost town, with many of the industry’s largest players MIA, and the (unmasked!) floor devoid of the normal crowds and energy. The 2023 show was a deliberate effort to stage a comeback, and prove the SHOT Show was still relevant and important to the industry. It was fueled by a 110% “All-In” effort from the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), and a reserve of pent-up energy from participants who had missed one or two years, and was a huge success. However, the question remained about what the show would look like, going forward, when things got back to “normal.”

Things were back to normal on the floor at SHOT Show 2024.

We received that answer over the past week. The 2024 show felt like many of the pre-2020 shows to me, which was a good thing. The industry wasn’t in a defensive huddle, preparing for an overwhelming assault on our liberties from our political enemies. The participants weren’t looking over their shoulders, they were looking forward. They were optimistic, focused on business, and not preoccupied with things beyond their control. There was a sense this would be a good year, but (strangely, I thought) there was not an apparent concern that we’d see the full-tilt craziness of the WuFlu-era gun panic, where everyone in the industry felt like they were sprinting in a marathon.

I personally think 2024 promises to be more chaotic and dangerous than most people anticipate, but it was nice to see the industry’s blood pressure had gone down for a while.

SHOT SHOW MAGIC

There’s so much neat stuff going on during the SHOT Show, that it’s hard to avoid stumbling into something wonderful, by sheer dumb luck and random timing. I think of it as the “Magic” of SHOT Show, and was happy to experience a few of these moments this past week.

One of these occurred when I visited Safariland, and my old friend Tommy “Machine Gun” Campbell, pulled me aside to introduce me to Safariland founder Neale Perkins. I had a wonderful visit with Mr. Perkins, who was kind enough to talk to me about key moments in the development of the company. At one point I asked him if he ever thought, when he was just getting into the business with maker John Bianchi, in John’s garage workshop, that he’d become as successful as he did, and build such a large company?

This mighty company is another American garage success story.

Mr. Perkins went on to explain that his dad had encouraged him to quit “playing in the leather business,” because “there was no future in it.” He even went so far as to show Neale the financials for the largest holster manufacturer of the time—Bucheimer Clark—to demonstrate there was little money to be made in the industry, and he could make better use of his talents and energy elsewhere.

“I stayed with it though, because I liked what I was doing. I enjoyed it very much,” he told me.

His customers liked what his company was doing too, and the rest is history. There’s an important life lesson in that story, and I was happy to hear it straight from the source.

Mr. Perkins also told me the story of the Bullitt holster, and how its placement in the popular film was a shot in the arm for the fledgling company. There was a planned scene in the film in which the lead character (played by Hollywood star, Steve McQueen) would draw a weapon while seated behind the wheel of his car, and fire it out the driver’s window.  A movie rep asked if Perkins’ company could build a holster that would allow him to do that?

Bullitt, starring the Safariland Model 19 holster, the 1968 Ford Mustang GT 390 Fastback, and Steve McQueen (in that order). Image from Internet Movie Database, https://www.imdb.com

Indeed, they could. Safariland built one of their upside-down shoulder holsters for Steve McQueen’s 2.5” Colt Diamondback, that was used with great dramatic effect throughout the movie. Demand for the type soared after the movie’s box office success, and Safariland’s Model 19 became one of the company’s best sellers. “That holster really helped to  put us on the map,” said Mr. Perkins.

The 2.5″ Colt Diamondback used by Steve McQueen definitely had panache on the big screen. Image from Internet Movie Database, https://www.imdb.com
Steve McQueen’s Safariland holster had a cartridge slide on the off side, which held 6 rounds for his Colt Diamondback. Image from Internet Movie Database, https://www.imdb.com

We’ve seen some influential guns in movies throughout the years (James Bond’s Walther PPK, Dirty Harry’s S&W Model 29, John McClane’s Beretta 92 . . .), but the holsters don’t usually steal the show like the Safariland “Bullitt holster” did, and I think that’s pretty neat.

Contemporary image of a Safariland Model 19 on the left, and a close-up from the movie Bullitt on the right. Holstorian Red Nichols ( see https://www.holsterguys.com/blog ) traces the lineage of the holster back to maker Wally Wolfram. Image from DefensiveCarry.com

2024 SHOW TRENDS

Real quick (because I know you want to get to the revolver stuff!), I think the biggest trend of the 2024 SHOT Show was the resurgence of the levergun. Everyone seemed to have a new levergun to show off, including some surprise players that nobody would have anticipated, like Smith & Wesson, with their .44 Magnum Model 1854—a nice looking gun, that I’m sure will sell very well.

An engraved, limited edition set composed of the Model 1854 rifle and Model 29 revolver was on display at the show. It was a stunning combination! Sorry about the awful glare in the photo—I couldn’t find a single angle that eliminated it.
Here’s a close up of that engraved Model 29 that’s paired with the engraved Model 1854 in the Limited Edition set. Again, my apologies for the unavoidable glare!
The Smith & Wesson Model 1854, in two styles of trim–Model 1854 Limited Edition (Top), and Model 1854 (Bottom). Both guns feature side gate loading as well as removable tube loading.

An incomplete list of new leverguns would include the Rossi R95 .45-70 Trapper, the Stag Arms / Aero Precision prototypes in .45-70, the Marlin Classic Series Model 1894 (be still, my heart!), the Marlin Dark Series Model 1895, the Marlin 336 SBL, the Marlin 336 Trapper, the Bond Arms LVRB, the Winchester Ranger, the Chiappa Wildlands Model 1892 Takedown, the Uberti 1873 Hunter, and the Henry Lever Action Supreme. I know we’re all RevolverGuys here, but there’s just something special about leverguns that punches the same buttons, as far as I’m concerned.

The Classic Series Marlin 1894 in .357 Magnum stole Mike’s heart at Media Day. THIS is what pops into his head when he hears “levergun”–blue steel, checkered walnut, all class! The sample he shot kept the steel ringing with little effort, and would be a wonderful rifle for the field. See the Marlin entry below, later in this article, for more info about this gun and the others in the Marlin catalog.
The Winchester Ranger in .22 LR left Mike grinning ear-to-ear. There are few things as entertaining as a .22 Levergun with a pile of ammo, and this is a nice one. Although it’s produced overseas to make it more economical, the Ranger is an original Winchester design, and I was impressed by how well it ran. The gun features a 3/8” dovetail for optic mounts, for those who want to add glass.
Stag Arms (Top) and Aero Precision (Bottom) lever guns in .45-70. These were prototypes, and not new introductions for 2024, but keep an eye out for them.
Rossi had a few new leverguns to add to their existing stable, including the R95 Trapper in .45-70, top. They have an extensive lineup of leverguns in both rifle and pistol calibers to check out.
The new Henry Lever Action Supreme accepts AR-pattern magazines, and is chambered in .223 and .300 BLK. It’s beautifully nade, like all Henry products, and really turned some heads at the show.

On the other end of the scale, the proliferation of electronic optics and guns equipped for them was another established trend that remained strong in 2024. We’ll talk about the new Taurus red dot revolver in a bit, but I can’t leave without mentioning the amazing splash that optics giant Holosun made with new products like their solar-charging, SCS Carry red dot, their DPS-TH Thermal Optic (a fusion of red dot and thermal sight technology), their DPS-NV Night Vision Optic (a fusion of red dot and night vision sight technology), their IRIS compact IR pointer/illuminator, and their 6X magnifier optic, the HM6X. The stuff of our science fiction dreams is here, and will soon be on our guns. Amazing.

OK, let’s get to the revolver stuff!

LIPSEY’S / SMITH & WESSON

Are you sitting down?

Good, because I’m going to break the alphabetical order and start with the biggest news of the SHOT Show, because I don’t want to be accused of burying the lead.

Announcing the Ultimate Carry J-Frame, from Lipsey’s! Image from Lipsey’s, https://lipseys.com/

The BIG news from Big Blue this year is their Ultimate Carry J-frame collaboration with Lipsey’s, which I’ve been quietly and patiently waiting for, ever since Lipsey’s Senior Vice President and Product Development Manager, Jason Cloessner, asked me what J-frame improvements I’d like to see. I gave him an earful, almost a year ago, and it’s been a difficult (and exciting) wait for the final result!

The Model 442 Ultimate Carry, in .38 Special
The Model 642 Ultimate Carry, in .38 Special

Jason and Lipsey’s have convinced Smith & Wesson to build a J-frame the way we want it. There will be four flavors of the “Ultimate Carry J-Frame”—a silver (642UC) and black (442UC) finished .38 Special +P, and a silver (632UC) and black (432UC) finished .32 H&R Magnum (.32 fans, rejoice!).

The Model 432 Ultimate Carry, in .32 H&R Magnum
The Model 632 Ultimate Carry, in .32 H&R Magnum

All frames are made of aluminum, and (Praise the Lord!) do NOT have a lock installed! Expect a curb weight of 16 ounces.

Each of the guns features high-visibility sights. The front is an XS Standard Dot, with a green-colored ring and tritium insert, which is pinned to the ramp on the two-piece, shrouded extractor rod, barrel. The rear is a Novak-style, U-notch (0.160” wide, to allow rapid acquisition of the front), with a serrated rear face that’s mounted in a dovetail. The .38 Special +P sights are properly regulated at 15 yards for the Speer 135 grain Gold Dot Short Barrel load, and 148 grain wadcutters. The .32 H&R Magnum sights are likewise regulated at 15 yards, for Federal Personal Defense 85 grain JHP and 100 grain bullets in the 800 fps range, like the Buffalo Bore .32 S&W Long 100 grain wadcutter.  You’re not going to have to break out your files, or adjust your point of aim on these beauties!

The XS Tritium Dot really “pops” in the 0.160″ wide notch of the Ultimate Carry’s serrated rear sight.

Custom G10 boot-style grips were sourced from VZ Grips for the project, with the silver guns wearing an attractive black and gray laminate pattern, and the black guns wearing an attractive black and red (“cherry”) laminate pattern. The grips are of “high horn” design, with extended horns that reach up to the recoil shoulder and add some width to the back strap that will better distribute the recoil in the web of your hand. The back strap is enclosed as well, which should help to make the gun fit average-to-large hands much better, without cramping the trigger reach. An appropriate speedloader relief will help you recharge the gun more efficiently, even with HKS #36 and #32J loaders.

The Ultimate Carry revolvers feature two-piece barrels, pinned front sights, shrouded extractor rods, beveled cylinder edges, and chamfered chambers.

The chambers are chamfered, and the leading edges of the cylinder are beveled. The action has received some attention to smooth it out, and custom hammer and rebound slide springs were developed to lessen the pull weight. A significant improvement is the use of Titanium hammer, trigger, and cylinder stop pins, which are more robust than the aluminum pins normally used in the Airweights—a weakness we’ve previously discussed in these pages.

I was expecting to shoot the Ultimate Carry J-Frame at a private media event before SHOT Show, but the guns were delayed at a FedEx hub by weather conditions that interrupted the flying schedule, so I’ll have to wait until a special media event next month. We’ll have expanded, special coverage of these beauties, and the story of their development, for you to enjoy soon.

As a side note to all my brethren in the Occupied Territories, you can rest easy–S&W is committed to placing these on California’s roster of approved handguns, so you won’t get cut out of the deal. It may take a little extra time to wade through the bureaucracy, so don’t fret if they aren’t on the list yet, when the guns first start to ship. We’ll eventually get access to them, and you won’t be disappointed. They’ll be worth the wait!

No lock!  Great sights! A great trigger! Enhanced reliability! Can I get a Hallelujah, brothers and sisters?

MSRP $759.

CCI AMMUNITION

The big news from rimfire giant CCI this year is the introduction of the .22 Uppercut, a .22 Long Rifle round that’s designed for defensive duty. This is CCI’s first .22 LR round designed for defense, and it looks like a winner.

Designed in conjunction with engineers from Speer, the Uppercut features a 32 grain JHP with special nose skiving that promotes full and reliable expansion from short barrels. The thick copper jacket on the Uppercut (the thickest on any CCI .22 LR bullet, at six thousandths—similar to the Speer .22 WMR Gold Dot bullet) peels back to form six petals that increase projectile’s frontal area, but prevents these petals from fragmenting or shedding, which allows the bullet to preserve its retained weight.

This retained weight helps the expanded bullet to achieve sufficient penetration. CCI claims the Uppercut will penetrate 8 to 10 inches in ballistics gelatin (bare, and covered with FBI-protocol light clothing) when fired from short barrels in the 2.5” to 4.0” range that generate approximately 950 fps velocity. That’s less penetration than you’ll get from a load like Federal’s .22 LR Punch, which is designed for deep penetration, but the Uppercut trades a little penetration to provide more expansion.

The Uppercut penetrates 8″ to 10″ in ballistic gelatin, even after expanding. Image from CCI, https://www.cci-ammunition.com

The Uppercut seems like an excellent fit for .22 LR snubs like the Ruger LCR, Smith & Wesson 43C, and Smith & Wesson 317 that are so popular with RevolverGuys.

CCI is also offering a new line of lead-free shotshells in 9mm, .38 Spl/.357 Mag, .40 S&W, .44 Spl/.44 Mag, .45 Auto, and .45 Colt. The HEVI-Bismuth Pest Control shotshells are filled with HEVI-Bismuth shot and loaded with the Catalyst lead-free primer. There’s also a 10mm Auto Centerfire Handgun shotshell loaded with lead No. 9 shot. These shotshells may bring peace of mind if you’re in snake country.

CIMARRON

Cimarron announced it has retired their Evil Roy series of single actions this year, in honor of the SASS shooter’s retirement from competitive shooting. To fill the gap, Cimarron will offer the Arizona Ranger Competition SA, which is billed as their best “competition ready” model.

The Cimarron Arizona Ranger is a beautiful sixgun, set up for competition use.

The Arizona Ranger features a wide, square-notch rear sight and a wide, constant-width front sight. The gun is fitted with slim, checkered grips and special “Arizona Ranger” engraving on the barrel.

The gun has a gunsmith-tuned action, which utilizes Cimarron’s competition hammer and lighter trigger and bolt springs, for a light, crisp, no-creep trigger pull. That’s not just advertising hype, either—when I pulled the trigger on this one, I was really impressed. It’s got a great action!

The Arizona Ranger has received some internal parts upgrades designed to enhance reliability, according to Cimarron. It will be chambered in .357 Magnum and .45 Colt, and barrel lengths of 4.75” and 5.5” will be offered.  MSRP $842.01.

COLT

Colt made a Christmas Wish come true this year by releasing a blued, carbon steel version of their excellent 2020 Python.

The carbon steel, blued Python will be offered with a 6″ barrel . . .
. . . and a 4″ barrel, as well. Walnut stocks with a gold Colt emblem will be standard on both.

This blued beauty will be offered with either a 4.25” barrel (42 ounces) or 6” barrel (46 ounces), with walnut target stocks that bear a gold Colt medallion. The top rib has a matte surface to reduce glare, and the barrel wears a recessed target crown.

Colt had some other unique Python variants on display. This is the Combat Eiite, with 3″ barrel, front night sight, unfluted cylinder, and G10 boot grips.
The Matte Python is available with a 4″ or 6″ barrel, and Hogue rubber finger grips.
The Python Classic has a 2.5″ barrel and checkered service stocks.

RevolverGuy already has a sample for test and evaluation, and we’ll be reporting on it in these pages soon. Standby for more on this luxurious looking snake! MSRP $1,599.

DESANTIS GUNLEATHER

Old friend Gene DeSantis showed me their new Transit holster, which they plan to offer for small frame revolvers soon.

The DeSantis Transit holster will soon be available for small frame revolvers. https://www.desantisholster.com

The Transit is an open top, IWB holster made from suede and reinforced at the top with a Kydex-reinforced, saddle leather band to keep the holster’s mouth open when the gun is drawn. The holster is secured to the belt with a steel clip that can be swapped to the other side of the holster, which makes this design ambidextrous.

The Transit is built with a reversible belt clip and mounting points on each side of the holster, making it ambidextrous. https://www.desantisholster.com

I Just received a test sample and look forward to wringing it out. At a first glance, I think the Transit will prove to be a comfortable and useful rig. We’ll report on it here in these pages, so stay tuned.

DIAMONDBACK FIREARMS

Diamondback REALLY surprised me with their newest offering, the SDR (Self Defense Revolver)!

The SDR is a compact, double action snub revolver with cosmetics that betray Kimber (frame and barrel) and LCR (cylinder) influences.  The beautifully-polished gun is made from stainless steel, weighs about 21 ounces, and features a six shot, .357 Magnum cylinder. The six chambers are chamfered, which aid in reloading the gun.

The Diamondback SDR has a high level of polish. Note the push-button yoke release, at the top right corner of the trigger guard.

The gun has an external hammer, and a fenced, Kimber-style, push-button cylinder release that was friendly on my thumb knuckle when I shot the gun (no “J-frame thumb” with this one!). The 2” stainless barrel has a 1:18.75” twist with a shroud for the extractor rod (made with a smooth, radiused tip, that won’t cut you), and racy-looking flats which bear the SDR logo on one side, and the chambering on the other. The muzzle has been given a 45 degree crown to protect the rifling, enhance accuracy, and give the muzzle an attractive look.

The SDR has a unique, spring-loaded, crane retention button in the frame that will make disassembly and maintenance simpler—with just one press, the crane can be removed from the gun. At first, I was concerned this proud button could be inadvertently activated and cause a stoppage, but I suspect the front (extractor rod tip) and rear (center pin) lockup of the cylinder, as well as the cylinder stop, will probably keep everything in place should that happen.

The gun is equipped with boot-style, two-finger grips made of rubber that were comfortable in the hand (Diamondback made the excellent decision to use a J-Frame grip profile, for the widest aftermarket support). Low profile, fiber-optic sights (a pinned orange front, and a dovetailed green rear) topped the frame and gave an excellent sight picture, reminiscent of the Kimber’s.

The SDR’s trigger is spec’d at 9.0 – 11.5 pounds and the sample I shot felt like it landed right in the middle of that range. It feels very much like the Kimber’s trigger—it’s smooth and light, doesn’t stack, and has a natural spot for you to stage the trigger, if you like to do that.

Considering the fact that Diamondback’s only previous revolver product was the Sidekick–a fun-looking, but very rough economy rimfire with a utilitarian finish–I was really stunned by the looks and performance of the SDR.  I had a long conversation with the Engineering Director about this gun, and we’ve agreed to continue the conversation and address a few technical issues that I raised, but I think this revolver is going to be a strong contender when it reaches the production stage. Diamondback has really upped their game, and I look forward to working more with this gun.  MSRP $777.

FEDERAL AMMUNITION

Federal has a modest selection of new products for RevolverGuys this year, starting with a .38 Special, 130 grain FMJ Federal Champion load that’s aimed at target shooters. The Federal Champion brass is not compatible with moon clips, so if you want to use those for some reason, you’ll still need to go with the equivalent American Eagle load.

Image from Federal Ammunition, https://www.federalpremium.com

Handgun hunters might appreciate Federal’s new Hammerdown .360 Buckhammer 220 grain softpoint load, which is actually optimized for levergun performance, but will fit the chambers of handguns like Magnum Research’s BFR (see the entry, below) and produce good performance downrange.

My Federal contacts tell me the HST loads in .327 Federal Magnum and .357 Magnum have had a couple production runs ship already, and there will be more to come in 2024, so keep an eye out for these excellent defensive rounds.

I’m also told they’ll be making more .327 ammo this year than ever before, as a symbiotic result of the success of their .30 Super Carry round.  Since the .30 Super Carry and .327 Federal Magnum share a common bullet diameter (0.312”), Federal can use the same equipment to produce both calibers with only minor setup changes. This minimizes costly machine downtime, and makes it both easier and more efficient to build .327 Federal Magnum, when the machine isn’t cranking out .30 Super Carry. In the past, it took more time to reconfigure the equipment to produce .327, so the cartridge didn’t get as many production runs, but that will change for the better in 2024.

Defensive shotgunners have waited a long time for FLITECONTROL technology to migrate to the 20 Gauge! Image from Federal Ammunition, https://www.federalpremium.com

It’s not a handgun round, but I think you’ll forgive me when I pass along the great news that Federal will also be loading a 20 Gauge Personal Defense shotgun load with the excellent FLITECONTROL wad. The 2.75” shell will be loaded with 10 pellets of No. 2 Buck, and should be an excellent choice for those of us who still believe in the Gospel of the Gauge.

GALCO HOLSTERS

Gun leather giant Galco Holsters has some nice surprises for RevolverGuys this year, starting with a new fit for the ever-popular Combat Master. This strong side, open top, FBI cant scabbard will now be offered for the (2019) Colt King Cobra with 3” barrel, which is welcome news indeed, as production holster options for this excellent carry revolver have been slim. Galco also offers the Combat Master for the (2017) Colt Cobra, and we appreciate their aftermarket support for these new Colts.

The Combat Master is now available for the 3″ Colt King Cobra. Image from Galco Gunleather, https://www.galcogunleather.com

Galco also released a pair of new ammo carriers for 2024.  The first is a “2.0” version of their 2x2x2 ammo carrier, which differs from the original in having belt slots cut into the back panel, for those who want to thread a narrow belt through it, and a new reinforcing strap that helps to prevent the pouch from flopping forward and inverting when the snap is released. This latter feature should make it more efficient to use.

2x2x2 carrier image from Galco Gunleather, https://www.galcogunleather.com

The second new ammo carrier is the Cobra speedloader pouch, which also differs from the original design by having a pair of narrow belt slots cut into the back panel.  This pouch will probably work best with HKS and 5-Star style loaders, since the sidewalls of the pouch are high, and prevent you from pinching the loader body to withdraw it (an observation that I shared with my Galco contact, which might result in yet another improvement to the design—fingers crossed).

Cobra speedloader pouch image from Galco Gunleather, https://www.galcogunleather.com
Cobra speedloader pouch image from Galco Gunleather, https://www.galcogunleather.com

The Belt E-Z Loader Carrier, which neatly carries a strip-style loader in its vertical pouch, was actually introduced a few years ago, but I missed it previously, somehow, so I’ll fix that now. The Belt E-Z Loader has a snapped retention strap to secure the loader, and is shipped with one of Galco’s E-Z Loader strips. It looks like a great way to carry an inline strip loader, and we’ll be testing one soon.

The strap on the Belt E-Z Loader will secure the strip from falling out. Image from Galco Gunleather, https://www.galcogunleather.com
The new Hawkeye IWB protects the optic on Taurus T.O.R.O. revolvers . Image from Galco Gunleather, https://www.galcogunleather.com

Lastly, Galco has created the Hawkeye IWB holster for the Taurus 856 T.O.R.O. revolver. The Hawkeye is an open top holster with a pocket that covers and protects the optic. The Hawkeye has a metal-reinforced mouth, to prevent it from collapsing when the gun is drawn, and a pair of snapped belt loops that make it easy to remove the holster without taking off your belt. The standard belt loops are 1.75”, but they can easily be replaced with optional 1.5” or 1.25” loops, if desired.

KIMBER

The Kimber K6xs wasn’t ready for the 2023 SHOT Show, and was released mid-year at the NRA Annual Meeting, so this was the first time I got my mitts on it.

Six shots in an aluminum frame–not many revolvers are doing that, these days.
Mike found the new Kimber K6xs sight regulation was spot on for 130 grain ammunition.
Mike went 5 for 6 on the small paddle on the hostage target with his first 6 rounds through the K6xs. This gun really shoots!

Kevin has already done an excellent review of the K6xs, so I won’t spend much ink on it here, but I will say that I was extremely impressed with the gun when I finally got to shoot it at Media Day. The action was smooth and light, the sights were dead on for the 130 grain FMJ that I shot, the grips were comfortable, and it was just a pleasure to shoot. Well done, Kimber!

LOK GRIPS

Our friends at LOK Grips have been busy working on some unique grips for underserved revolver platforms. They just released a Two-Finger Carry grip for the Kimber K6s DA/SA, a Two-Finger Carry grip for the Kimber DAO, and a Three-Finger Carry grip for the Taurus small frame revolvers.

The Two-Finger Carry grip for the Kimber K6 DASA. Image from Lok Grips, https://lokgrips.com

Additionally, LOK is offering a Two-Finger Carry grip for the round butt Rossi RP63, and a Three-Finger Carry grip for the Rossi RM64 and RM66 revolvers.

The Three-Finger Carry grip for the Taurus small frame revolvers. Image from Lok Grips, https://lokgrips.com

We’re still leaning on them for a two-finger grip for the Taurus small frames and the Ruger LCR, and hope to have some news for you about those later in the year. Stay tuned for more details.

MAGNUM RESEARCH

Magnum Research has chambered their mighty BFR revolver for the .360 Buckhammer cartridge introduced by Remington at the 2023 SHOT Show.

The 10”-barreled, stainless steel, single action sixgun is fitted with an unfluted cylinder, black adjustable sights, and a black rubber monogrip.

Crew-served artillery! The Magnum Research BFR in 360 Buckhammer will certainly grab some attention in the field and on the range!

The massive gun weighs 4.9 pounds, and you’ll be glad for every ounce when you touch off the chamber under the hammer. This was a serious chunk of steel, and it got lots of attention in the Kahr Arms / Magnum Research booth at the show. I think it will be mighty popular with the long range hunters. MSRP $1,528.

MARLIN

I’m calling an audible, here. I know Marlin doesn’t make revolvers, but I don’t think you’ll mind, because leverguns and revolvers go together like PB&J, and it would be downright un-American for a RevolverGuy to lack even the slightest bit of interest in them. You’re not a communist, right? Good. Let’s talk leverguns, then.

The Classic-series rifles were announced last year, but it took a little while for them to start coming out of the factory in Mayodan, NC (the .44 Mag/.44 Spl launched in June 2023, and the .357 Mag/.38 Spl launched in November 2023). Things are in full swing now though, and Marlin is busy trying to meet the overwhelming demand for these wonderful guns.

The Marlin Classic Series Model 1894 in .357 Magnum stole Mike’s heart. The new Marlin has done a wonderful job capturing the magic in these guns.

I got to shoot the .30-30 Win Model 336 at the 2023 SHOT Show, and this year I finally got to shoot the Model 1894 in .357 Magnum. The gun has rugged, handsome looks with its blue steel finish and checkered walnut furniture. The gun features a semi-buckhorn rear sight, and a brass bead up front that’s hooded, to eliminate glare and enhance the sight picture. I’m not a superior rifleman, but the combination of a good trigger and this sight arrangement allowed me to hit everything I was aiming at. The Classic Model 1894 is also available in .44 Mag/.44 Spl, and these guns are everything I’d hoped for. If you want to pair a rifle in the same chambering as your revolver, I wouldn’t look any further.

The sights on the Classic Series rifles include an adjustable semi-buckhorn rear, and a hooded brass bead front. Image from Marlin Firearms, https://www.marlinfirearms.com
The Marlin Dark Series Model 1895 in .45-70 has an M-LOK compatible fore end and stock, as well as a Picatinny rail for mounting optics.
Friend, Shootist, and one of the industry’s great gun writers, William “La Vista” Bell, is in full recoil from touching off a .45-70 round in the Dark Series Model 1895.

Marlin also had the Dark Series Model 1895 rifle in .45-70 Govt available to shoot, with its black polymer M-LOK stock, black aluminum M-LOK handguard, fiber optic/Tritium sights, Picatinny rail, and threaded barrel with radial muzzle brake. The gun handled well and the brake did a very good job of taming the .45-70 Remington Core Lokts, even if the gun was louder than heck with it installed (don’t worry–those of you in friendly states can add a suppressor, and there’s also a plain thread protector that comes with the rifle if you don’t want to use the brake). The racy, modern looks might initially cause a traditionalist to hold their breath, but the features are entirely practical and useful. Marlin expects to ship a Dark Series Model 336 and a Dark Series Model 1894 later in the year, to round out the collection.

This Model 336 in SBL trim was a fantastic shooter! The deer won’t be happy to see this one in the field.

Marlin also had the.30-30 Win. Model 336 SBL and Model 336 Trapper on display at the Media Day. I shot the Model 336 SBL and absolutely loved it, but somehow missed seeing the shorter Trapper. These guns feature the brushed stainless finish and gray laminate stock seen on the earlier SBL-series Model 1895. The Trapper features premium Skinner Sights, front and rear, on its 16″ barrel, and the SBL features a fiber optic sight up front, a ghost ring in the rear, and an extended Picatinny rail for optic mounting, on its full length,  19″ barrel. An extended hammer spur for optic clearance, and swing swivel studs are included accessories. You’ll be ready for the hunting fields with these beauties, and they’ll get lots of attention in camp, too.

NORTH AMERICAN ARMS

We didn’t see any new introductions from North American Arms last year, but the forthcoming Sentinel seems like it might be worth the wait.

The Sentinel combines features of the popular Pug and Sidewinder revolvers, with the Pug’s underlugged barrel profile and high-visibility sights being mated to the swing-out cylinder of the Sidewinder.

The forthcoming Sentinel will feature a swing-out cylinder like the Sidewinder’s

The Sentinel will be offered in .22 Magnum, with some models adding a .22 LR conversion cylinder. The 1.5” barreled gun will be topped with either white dot or tritium sights, depending on the model, and will be equipped with black rubber grips.

The Pug’s barrel underlug and XS Tritium dot sight were incorporated into the new Sentinel.

This is the North American Arms revolver I’ve been waiting for, and I’m excited to see it’s on the way. NAA estimates the Sentinel will be ready to ship in the summer, and we’ll try to get a sample for testing later in the year.

REMINGTON AMMUNITION

Big Green certainly hasn’t neglected revolver shooters this year! There’s a host of great revolver cartridges on the way from Lonoke, Arkansas, including a family of Core Lokt handgun cartridges in .357 Magnum, .41 Magnum (all rise!), .44 Magnum, and 10mm Auto. The Core Lokt projectiles are designed around a lead core with a grooved waist that gets filled by the copper jacket, creating a mechanical lock between the two that prevents core-jacket separation. The heavy-for-caliber Core Lokt bullets (.357/180, .41/210, .44/240, 10mm/200) have a short semi-jacket that leaves a soft lead cavity mouth behind (on revolver bullets only—the 10mm is jacketed up to the mouth, so it doesn’t get damaged on your auto’s feed ramp) to start the bullet’s expansion. Remington claims 2X expansion and high weight retention for these Core Lokt bullets, which are optimized for handgun velocities.

The Core Lokt handgun bullets offer reliable expansion and weight retention. Image from Remington, https://www.remington.com

Owners of the new Magnum Research BFR in 360 Buckhammer will be able to feed it with the new Core Lokt Copper JHP, which features an all-copper, 160 grain bullet for those areas that require lead-free ammunition.

On the other end of the scale, Remington is offering some new .22 LR loads that will take care of any task in the field. Each of these loads benefits from recent upgrades to Remington’s rimfire ammunition manufacturing process, which are designed to improve ammo quality and reliability. The “Improved Rimfire Technology” includes: A reformulated priming mix, whose new formulation is more energetic and consistent, which leads to more consistent pressure and velocity, as well as better accuracy; Thicker, more robust brass walls and rims to handle pressure better and improve loading consistency; An improved rim cavity design, that better holds the priming mix, and; A change to loading techniques, in which the case is fully manufactured before it goes to the loading stage, instead of completing the case forming process during bullet seating. All of these changes promise to make Remington’s new rimfire ammunition even more dependable and consistent.

The new 22 Golden Hunter ammunition offers reliable expansion out to 75 yards and beyond.

The first of the Improved Rimfire loads is the .22 Golden Hunter, which features a 40 grain, precision hollowpoint bullet that’s optimized for quick expansion and optimum penetration, regardless of barrel length. The bullet opens up early, but still goes deep enough to take out small game and varmints up to coyote size.

The new Ranch Hand ammunition features a choice of Round Nose or Hollow Point bullet profiles. Image from Remington, https://www.remington.com

The next Improved Rimfire is the Ranch Hand, with either a 38 grain hollowpoint or 40 grain round nose bullet that’s designed for “flawless feed, function and fire.” Remington says the new Ranch Hand is the most dependable .22 LR round they’ve ever made, and is a great choice for small game and varmint hunting.

It was great news to hear my Remington contacts were closely coordinating with Lipsey’s and Smith & Wesson to ensure the new 432 and 632 Ultimate Carry revolvers would have an ample supply of .32 H&R Magnum ammunition this year. To feed those guns, and the army of small revolvers chambered in .327 Federal Magnum that aren’t much fun to shoot with full house loads (thinking about the Ruger LCR, Ruger SP101, Taurus 327, and others), Remington will produce a High Terminal Performance (HTP) .32 H&R Mag load with an 85 grain JHP, and a Performance Wheelgun .32 H&R Mag load with a 95 grain lead semiwadcutter.

The .32 H&R Mag joins the HTP family in 2024. Image from Remington, https://www.remington.com
Performance Wheelgun ammunition in .32 H&R Mag will keep shooters shooting in 2024. Image from Remington, https://www.remington.com

These should be just the ticket for .32 snubs, offering good terminal performance with manageable recoil. Once again, I think Remington is making use of the surplus machine time on their .30 Super Carry line, and keeping it running with minimal interruption by churning out .32 H&R Magnum ammo at the end of .30 Super Carry production runs. It’s efficient, and RevolverGuys will love them for it.

ROSSI

On the heels of the 2023 introduction of the RP63 and RM66 revolvers, Rossi will be importing the medium-frame RM64 in 2024.

The Rossi RM64 is a 4″ medium frame revolver with adjustable sights and black finish.
The Rossi revolver lineup includes the round butt 3″ RP63, the black finish 4″ RM64, and the stainless 6″ RM66

The RM64 is a carbon steel revolver with a satin black finish and 6-round, .357 Magnum cylinder. Its 4” barrel wears a serrated ramp up front, and an adjustable rear sight at the back.  I was impressed by the quality of these guns and think they’re an excellent value.

RUGER

While there were plenty of exciting new products to view from the brand (including the Generation II Ruger American Rifle, the LC Carbine in .45 ACP, and the side-folding Mini-14 Tactical“I love it when a plan comes together” ), Ruger had a light year for new revolver introductions, with the .22 Hornet Super Redhawk being the sole example of the breed.

The Super Redhawk is a serious piece of steel, and tamed the .22 Hornet. This cylinder looked like it was Cerakoted bronze by the end of the day, with all the fouling, but it ran like a Swiss watch. Rugers are the Honey Badger of revolvers!

The 66 ounce Super Redhawk measures 15 inches overall, sports a 9.5 inch barrel, and has an 8 round capacity. The massive gun’s weight, and its rubber Hogue monogrip, do an excellent job of taming the recoil, but the hot, .22 Hornet cartridge still rewards each trigger press with an impressive blast!  It was lots of fun to shoot this revolver and there was a consistent line of shooters waiting to take their turn, all day long, at Ruger’s booth during Media Day at the Range. MSRP $1,499.

It’s worth noting that Ruger is celebrating their 75th Anniversary this year, and will mark the special milestone with four specially-marked guns, including my favorite, the 75th Anniversary Mark IV Target.

It’s not a revolver, but the 75th Anniversary Mark IV Target is definitely an elegant looking gun, with its long, slender barrel, blue finish, and checkered wood stocks.
The bolt knob on the Mark IV Target features special 75th Anniversary markings
The 75th Anniversary roll mark is tastefully executed on the Mark IV Target.

This special Mark IV will feature a 6.88” tapered target barrel, a blued finish, checkered wood laminate grips, an adjustable rear sight, and tasteful 75th Anniversary logos on the receiver and bolt knob. I think it’s the most handsome Mark-series gun Ruger has ever made, and I just wish it was CA-compliant, so I could add one to my collection. MSRP $599.

TAURUS

Taurus is coming on strong in the revolver market, powered by the energy of their enthusiastic Marketing Manager, Caleb Giddings.

On the heels of Taurus’ 2023 introduction of the optic-ready, T.O.R.O.-series 605 and 856 revolvers, Taurus is introducing a T.O.R.O. version of their 327 Defender, with a 3” barrel and matte black finish. The 6-round, .327 Federal Magnum revolver features a night sight with an orange outline up front, and an optic rail with a Holosun K footprint. MSRP $553.99.

The 3″ Taurus 327 Defender is the next gun in the family to receive the T.O.R.O. treatment. We’re expecting great things from this gun, and have one on the way for T&E

In response to requests for an upgraded .357 Magnum, the Taurus 605 will be the next revolver to receive the Executive Grade treatment. The Taurus 605 Executive Grade will feature a satin stainless finish, wood target grips, and a brass rod front sight that was borrowed from the Taurus Judge Executive Grade (and which will become standard on the 856 Executive Grade as well, in 2024). Interestingly, the 605 Executive Grade will keep its hammer spur, instead of getting it bobbed, as on the 856 Executive Grade that preceded it. MSRP $757.

The Executive Grade goes Magnum with the Taurus 605 Executive Grade. Note the brass rod front sight.

Perhaps the biggest surprise from the bull this year was the introduction of the Taurus Deputy, a single action revolver that generally follows the Colt 1873 SAA pattern. The Taurus Deputy will be chambered in .357 Magnum and .45 Colt, and offered with 4.75” or 5.5” barrels. The gun features a polished black finish, fixed sights, and black synthetic grips. MSRP $606.99.

The Taurus Deputy 4.75″ in .45 Colt will be an affordable way to get into single action shooting. Image from Taurus USA, https://www.taurususa.com

TAYLOR’S & CO.

Taylor’s & Company already treated us to the 9mm TC9 and 1875 Outlaw revolvers (stay tuned for a great review from Steve Tracy on the 1875 Outlaw next month!) over the past year, so this was a light year from them at the show.

The Taylor’s & Co. Cerakote 1873 shares the same burnt bronze cosmetics as the popular Ruger Wrangler revolvers

Their sole revolver introduction was a Cerakote 1873 with 5.5” barrel, chambered in .357 Magnum. The barrel and frame were burnt bronze colored, and the cylinder and grips were black, giving the gun a striking resemblance to Ruger’s Wrangler-series guns of the same color. You’d swear you’re looking at the Wrangler’s big brother when you look at this gun. MSRP $823.88.

XS SIGHTS

The great folks at XS Sights have some new products coming in 2024 that RevolverGuys will be sure to enjoy.

Around February, you can expect a Standard Dot front sight for the Colt King Cobra, and a rugged, high visibility, fixed rear sight for the Smith & Wesson K-L-N revolvers.

We’ll soon have an XS Sights Standard Dot replacement sight available for the Colt King Cobra. Image from XS Sights, https://xssights.com
The “Minimalist” is a rugged, fixed rear sight option for medium and large frame S&W revolvers. Image from XS Sights, https://xssights.com

The XS Sights products are always excellent, and we are eager to see these on the market!

THAT’S ALL FOLKS

I think that pretty much covers it. We’ll be taking a closer look at some of these products as the year unravels, so stay tuned for more on these topics and others.  As always, thanks for reading!

Author: Mike

Lieutenant Colonel (Ret.) Mike Wood is a bonafide revolver nut, a certified law enforcement instructor in handgun, shotgun, patrol rifle, less-lethal, and diversionary device disciplines, and the author of Newhall Shooting: A Tactical Analysis, the definitive study of the infamous, 1970 California Highway Patrol shootout in Newhall, California. Mike wrote the "Tactical Analysis" column at Police1.com for 8 years, and enjoys teaching both armed citizens and law enforcement officers.

38 thoughts on “2024 SHOT Show Roundup”

  1. What a good year and show! Thank you, Mike, for all the news.

    My next purchase was to be a 9mm single action like Uberti’s Cattleman. Now that .223 lever-gun from Henry beckons to me. I enjoy reloads for .223 but seem to shoot my lever-action a lot more than the AR. .223 is a great round for medium game, too.

    1. Glad you liked it, Wheelgunner! Before you buy a 9mm single action, wait to see Steve Tracy’s report on the T&C 1875 Outlaw next month—it might change your mind!

  2. This year it appears the Shot Show went heavy on lever-action rifles, my favorite long guns. Smith & Wesson’s Model 1854, with its big loop lever seems very promising, as do the “new” Marlins. Back to the future!

    And because of more cool looking variants of the Colt Python, I might have to own one soon.

  3. Wow. Where to start? With a thank you, Mike, for writing this up! Given my situation for the next year or two, I’ll only be able to get a blued Python if Colt needs extra eye teeth…But it would be a good trade from my end. The S&W revolver in .32 is exciting but I’m hoping they introduce a few in a three inch barrel for weirdos like me. And do you know if Rossi (or S&W) might be making one of those lever carbines in .32? I guess I’m just never satisfied. I am also ecstatic to hear Remington will be making .32 H&R ammunition! Finally, for .22, that NAA Sentinel looks exciting, something even my daughter would be willing to work with. Since Remington has a nice 40 grain LHP made to expand from any barrel length, can we expect that 1.5” is enough? I’m looking forward to finding out. Thanks again Mike.

    1. No .32 leverguns from Rossi, buddy. You’ll have to go to Henry for those (and that’s not a bad thing, since they’re excellent). I’d have to guess the 1.5” barrel won’t be long enough to cause any significant expansion, but that’s probably a good thing, as expansion would just rob you of penetration, at that point.

  4. Fantastic overall roundup Mike. You even had a photo of a famous gun writer shooting a “Tacticool” lever-gun! LOL 😄

  5. The SDR is definitely peaking my interest, with a cylinder push-button release like Korth I wonder if they’ll offer a 9mm cylinder in the future.

    Spohr is finally coming to America as well! I am hoping they’ll release a 8 round cylinder in the future, that would be a sight to see.

    1. That’s an interesting idea, to have an extra cylinder like that. Taurus did that with one of theirs, and I thought it was a cool idea, but it didn’t make a big splash.

  6. On paper that Diamondback (we’re going to run into more name confusion now, aren’t we) SDR looks really interesting. I hope it lives up to its potential.

    1. There’s a few things they need to address, but they seem very receptive. I’m very hopeful about this product—seems like it could be excellent.

  7. Mike, thank you for the great report. You always seem to outdo yourself bringing the show to print. It was (almost) like being there. I know it took a lot of arm twisting to get you to go this year, but I’m glad you gave in ! ; ) I’ll be glad to help you out next year, with my arthritis neutralizing electric riding cart in tow.

    The lever gun resurgence, particularly in revolver calibers, is quite interesting as well as refreshing. Competition is a good thing, even if some from blue states with letters for logos appear to do a direct copy of more established lever gun makers. (blink, blink). I have always been partial to Marlin lever guns from the days of my grandfather’s Marlin in .35 Remington. I’m glad to see them back. I will admit; however, that the dual loading capability offered by Henry and Medium Blue is something I’m surprised Ruger/Marlin have not looked into incorporating. IMHO, it’s a much safer way of unloading a lever action gun than racking each round through the chamber without letting it go bang.

    Along with lever actions, I suspect the resurgence of that platform has also spurred the number of single action revolvers making their appearance. Colt SAA has always been overpriced and caters to those with more money than sense. No doubt Tayor & Co revolvers have a level of quality control, fit and finish, that none of the mass production guns have. In my snobbish opinion from owning Ruger revolvers since the late 1960s, the Ruger Blackhawks and GP/SP/SR series are workhorse machines, built like T-34 tanks, with the endurance of a Nimitz class aircraft carrier, and performance of Marine Recon. They remain the standard of performance and durability by which all others are judged. In over 50 years, I’ve never had a Ruger revolver choke on anything I stuffed in its chambers. And that old Blackhawk is so smooth . . . time does wonders. I wish Taurus and others the best of luck .

    The S&W Ultimate Carry promises to be an answer to a lot of prayers. Then again, I have no complaints – okay, very few complaints – about my mature adult S&W J frames. They’re timeless. Now to drop the silly lock on ALL their revolvers. I still refuse to buy any S&W with the Hillary Hole.

    Ammunition availability seems to have been an issue since around 2010, but it’s good to see Remington back in the game. I’ve shot Remington, Chestwinster, and Federal .22LR since I was a kid, and really couldn’t tell much difference between the three. I’m still working on my ‘research and evaluation’ 60 years down the road. One has to be thorough.

    I do wonder about Remington and Federal’s marketing departments with all of the fancy-dancy names. I’m willing to bet that Remington Ranch Hand and Golden Hunter is the same ‘golden bullet’ fodder I put cases of through my .22s over the decades. And while I’m harping over marketing . . . plain ole 20 gauge #2 or #3 buckshot won’t work against a home invader in my wife’s single bar Mossberg? I need the ‘personal defense’ 20 gauge. I guess that’s why folks buy first class airline tickets to get to their destination the same time as those in coach.

    1. Glad you enjoyed the report, Sir!

      I’m in 100% agreement with you about the utility of the “Henry system” for leverguns, with both side gate and removable tube magazine follower. It’s a great way to do business, and I’d like to see others follow. I’ll note that Marlin has been doing tube loading on rimfires forever, so it wouldn’t be a stretch to see that feature migrate to their leverguns.

      The minute you see the new S&W UC revolvers with no lock hole in the side, you’ll want one. Or two.

      The Golden Hunter marque is definitely intended to capitalize on the Golden Bullet name that we all have such a strong connection to. The one thing you gotta hand it to the ammo guys about, is they don’t recycle names verbatim like the gunmakers do. It bothers me to no end that I have to clarify what I mean by Bodyguard, M&P, Cobra, and King Cobra . . . at least I don’t have to do the same for Golden Saber and Hydra-Shok!

  8. Thanks Mike, for braving the masses to get us the scoop! It’s very exciting to see the industry send some love our way- .32’s, new .41 Mag ammo choices, lever guns, etc. Looking forward to the new year…

    1. Yes! I thought it was a great year for us! I think the industry must be reading RevolverGuy. The .41 Mag (all rise!) ammo was definitely a surprise.

  9. A). We’re lucky have you attending SHOT Show and bringing us your perspective and coverage Mike. I really enjoyed the non-revolver coverage as well as the wheel gun and ammo updates. Your enthusiasm shines through in your writing!

    B). Your input into the new Ultimate Carry J-Frame was more significant than most people know. I’m officially calling it the S&W RevolverGuy Ultimate Carry. Only because I know you would balk at it being assigned your actual name.

    C). Loved the Bullitt holster, Marlin coverage, and highlighting the Ruger 75th anniversary models.

    1. Thanks Steve!

      As a fellow gun nut, you can appreciate how hard it is to limit the coverage to revolvers alone, when there’s so many other neat guns out there. It’s an impossible task to cover the whole spectrum though—just too many guns to report on, there at the show! I’d still be writing . . .

  10. Steve you are spot on when you indicate Mike does not play in that brass band where folks play their own horn. Plenty of those but the folks that follow RG and it’s Editors know that these Editors are more concerned with helping the revolver community than seeing their name in neon.

    What is important is that revolver folks appreciate the efforts on our behalf.

    Hope the rough January weather we had didn’t stop by your place.

    Stay safe!

    1. Thanks Tony and Steve. I appreciate it, but you give me too much credit. The two men who truly deserve the credit for the Ultimate Carry revolvers are Jason Cloessner and Andrew Gore.

      Jason came up with the idea, reached out to trusted friends to solicit their inputs and merge them with his own ideas, then harnessed the power of Lipsey’s to convince S&W to build the guns (and that part took more effort and skill than you’d think, too). He assembled a team of vendors to support the project (like XS Sights and VZ Grips), and shepherded it from start to finish, keeping everyone on track to create the gun he had “built” first in his heart, and later on paper.

      Andrew caught Jason’s magnificent pass and skillfully ran the ball down the field. It can be hard for folks outside the industry to appreciate the effort it takes to manage a special project like this (particularly in a company with 170+ years of history and inertia, which was in the process of moving its headquarters to another state), but we can all be thankful for Andrew’s determination and his dedication to the UC guns. Smith & Wesson is a company that wants to move in a dozen different directions at once, and it can be a challenge to procure and protect the necessary internal resources to see a project through to completion when there are so many other priorities, and such fierce competition for scarce resources. There’s a natural tendency in all organizations to follow the path of least resistance, and it can be hard to generate and sustain a commitment to doing things “the right way” when it would be easier to cut corners. Andrew guarded against this, and ensured the UC wouldn’t just turn into a J-Frame with upgraded sights and grips. He helped S&W to understand the unique opportunity they had to reimagine the aluminum J-Frame, and incorporate upgrades that had been considered, but never put into production. Lots of folks will see the changes on the outside of the UC guns, but some of the gun’s greatest features lie inside, hidden from view, and we can thank Andrew, and the S&W team he assembled, for those.

      Jason created, defined and financed the concept, and Andrew ensured the machine produced it, giving Jason what he asked for, and more. Under Jason’s leadership, the Lipsey’s team will skillfully market and distribute the product to a nationwide network of dealers, which is no small feat, in itself.

      There were notable contributions from many other industry vendors and players along the way, but these are the two guys who deserve the greatest accolades for making it all happen.

  11. Looking over the new items again the NAA Sentinel is pretty temping if it works for Billy Trident Last Gasp grips, I was theory crafting a boot gun / pocket gun ever since I saw those grips

    1. I’d never heard of those! They look fascinating! I’m trying to get NAA to send a Sentinel for T&E and will definitely reach out to Turner CNC if we get a sample to test.

  12. Thanks for such a thorough overview of the 2024 Shot Show. Now you have me interested in the new S&W Ultimate Carry J frame – in .32 H&R Magnum.
    Appreciated your coverage of lever action rifles too! If reviewing all these firearms for future articles becomes overwhelming, feel free to give me a call!

  13. I’m most interested in the Henry .223 lever action and the Diamondback SDR.
    Also I’m very pleased that Remington will be making .32 Magnum and .41 Magnum ammunition.
    I’m fond of those two cartridges and hope they see a resurgence.

  14. I bought the Rossi R95 in .30-30 back in September. I like it, although I’ve only taken it out shooting once. Glad to see they’re making a version in .45-70, not that I could afford to buy it (or the ammo, for that matter).

    The J-Frame Ultimate Carry sounds like a nice upgrade, although I can’t afford that either; plus, I am satisfied with my existing 642. Not sure why .38 UC is regulated for the Speer Gold Dot load; is it aimed at law enforcement? In MY EXPERIENCE, the Speer Gold Dot 135gr +P load is very uncommon; I’ve never come across it in a shop, or on websites like SGAmmo.

    Now, the Minimalist sight from XS Sights is definitely something I’ll have to get. I would like that on my S&W 586.

    1. Axel, the Gold Dot was chosen for several reasons. First, it’s probably the best .38 JHP load you can fire from a snub, or at least the most proven. If you’ll pardon the pun, it’s become the gold standard for snub JHPs.

      Second, it falls neatly in the middle of other load choices. Winchester Ranger/PDX1 and Federal Hydra-Shok Deep will shoot to the same POA. So will 148 grain WCs. Economical 130 grain FMJ will be nearly the same. Federal Punch, Remington Golden Saber, Federal Hydra-Shok, and Sig V-Crown will be very close, as will most of the assorted 125 grain JHPs. The high speed lightweights (90-110 grains) and low speed heavyweights (158 grains) will shoot low or high, but by regulating the sights for the middle ground, the difference between the two won’t be as extreme as if you had used the traditional 158 grain baseline.

      It’s certainly been tough to find Gold Dot in any quantity over the last handful of years, but you can still find it occasionally. I just saw some online for a flash this week. Even if you can’t find it though, you can find a load that gets you close to where it hits.

  15. Lipsey’s J-frame .32 makes me curious, because there was no .32 already in production @ Smith & Wesson. Will that change in the near future? A re-launch of its 6-round 632 in .327 Fed Mag would be very welcome, to run all varieties of .32 caliber, including the most energetic!

    1. Ricky, there’s no telling what the future will bring. If this .32 H&R UC is received as well as we expect it to be, it may indeed prompt S&W to look at chambering a gun in .327 FM. The market’s vote will be watched closely, I’m sure.

      For my money, the .327 FM is best housed in larger, medium frame guns like the K-Frames. I think the .32 H&R is the sweet spot for a small J-Frame, and I’m glad that’s what the UC is chambered for. I’ve fired .327 FM through LCRs and I’m not a fan. It can even be a bit much in the SP101. In my experience, most of those smaller guns are actually shot with lesser powered loads, like .32 H&R and .32 Long. The .327 FM product launch advertising that promised us .357 Mag energy without the recoil was . . . misleading, shall we say. There’s no doubt the .327 FM deserves the Magnum moniker!

    1. Cecil, I got to handle some prototypes at the 2023 show and liked them. There was a hiccup this year and the grips were not displayed at the Rossi booth, so I didn’t get to handle the guns with them mounted, but I think the production version looks really good. I think you’ll like them.

  16. First, thank you for your review. I have no idea how hard or wonderful it is to be at SHOT Show though I hope to find out one day. Until then, I shall rely on you and the team at Revolver Guy.

    Next, I think the Diamondback SDR is one heck of a firearm with a ton of potential. I already reached out to Diamondback with some thoughts. Besides the idea of a 9mm cylinder to go with the 357 version, I also asked for a version with seven rounds of 327 or 32 Magnum. Since I was asking for that, I figured that I may as well ask for a spare cinder in 30 Super Carry to go with the 32 caliber revolver.

    Finally, I love the resurgence of interest in 32 caliber cartridges and firearms. Federal said at last years show that they would increase production of 327 and 32H&R but I haven’t seen that. I hope the other manufacturers of ammunition do produce more for sale. I hope the Lipseys UC revolvers help spur more interest and demand for the cartridges, especially practice ammo, so that we can start seeing it on the store shelves.

    1. I’m with you, Karl! I think it’s exciting to see the .32 resurgence unfolding, and have high hopes for the SDR. The Diamondback team appears to be very dedicated to doing this right, and I’ve already been in contact with them about some technical issues. We’ll be excited to get one of these for T&E when they’re ready. Thanks for writing!

  17. For people who use FBI, or modified FBI standards to choose defensive ammunition, 12 inches of penetration is the minimum. Whether a round expands or not we want 12 inches of penetration. It doesn’t penetrate 12 inches it fails. So, these companies that come along with a 22 design that expands from a short barrel, but doesn’t reach 12 inches are wasting their time as far as I’m concerned. Penetration is a “must” have. Expansion is a “nice” have. If you can’t maintain adequate penetration it’s a nonstarter. Sorry, but “Uppercut” is a no go. For now, I need to stick with loads I know I’m likely to get 12” or more from: Velocitor, Punch, or .22 mag.

    1. Thanks Ariel. We all have to figure out what we’re comfortable with, but I’ve never been particularly concerned about 12” minimum in calibrated gelatin. There’s a lot of rounds that don’t regularly make 12” in gel that have a long and established history of putting people in the dirt. Are they “Fails?” I think not.

      If anyone can explain to me why 9BPLE is insufficient because it only does 11”, I’ll wait . . .

      Again, we all have to figure out what our comfort level is. I think the Uppercut does a pretty nice job of balancing priorities for those folks who put more stock in expansion. I won’t fault you for wanting deeper penetration, but it’s good to have choices!

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