September 2006

Short Shots: 09/06

Beretta Introduces 90-TWO Pistol

The Beretta 90-TWO semiautomatic pistol, the latest in Beretta’s 92/96 Series, should already be available to consumers. This is the 92 Series’ first complete redesign since it was introduced to the law enforcement and military community more than 20 years ago.

Featuring new magazines with higher capacity in 9mm and .40 S&W calibers and an internal buffer to reduce recoil, the 90-TWO includes rounded contours that speed extraction from the holster. Also, the gun includes a technopolymer, removable, single-piece wraparound grip available in two sizes (standard and slim). A new accessory rail with removable cover was also added.

The aluminum-frame pistol uses a delayed-blowback system.

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North Carolina Department of Correction
Converts to Smith & Wesson M&P Pistols

In May, Smith & Wesson sold the North Carolina Department of Correction 5,700 of the company’s new Military & Police polymer pistols. Max Mathews, lead firearms instructor for the Office of Staff Development and Training with the North Carolina Department of Correction, said, "We have been using Smith & Wesson revolvers for 30 years. We currently employ over 10,000 officers and need to accommodate many different hand sizes and shapes. The M&P40’s interchangeable grip panels have enabled us to select one pistol that will fit every officer. Overall, we believe the M&P40 will give our officers an effective and reliable firearm."

Michael Golden, president and CEO of S&W, said, "This agreement is a tremendous endorsement of our new M&P polymer pistol, and it signals an exciting new chapter in the 30-year relationship between Smith & Wesson and the North Carolina Department of Correction."

In related news, S&W began shipping the 9mm version of the M&P pistols in May. The M&P9 is currently available in a full-size model, with a compact model in the works. The full-size pistol features a capacity of 17 rounds in the magazine plus one round in the chamber. Future M&Ps include the M&P357 in .357 SIG.

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New ArmaLite Trigger Deal

Until September 15, retail purchasers of ArmaLite AR-10 or M15 rifles built with standard, single-stage triggers are eligible to receive a new ArmaLite Tactical Two Stage Trigger in exchange for the single-stage trigger in their rifles. ArmaLite’s new trigger may be installed as a tactical two-stage trigger mechanism with a detectable second stage; a smooth, lightweight "Pull Through" two-stage match trigger; or a crisp National Match Trigger with a virtually undetectable movement of the second stage.

The trigger is set to ArmaLite’s recommended 5-pound match rifle weight. (Although CMP and NRA rules allow a 4.5-pound minimum weight, it is unwise to set a trigger to this weight at the factory. Normal break-in during use allows the trigger weight to drop slightly, and a competitor could fail to make weight before a match if starting with a minimum-weight trigger.)

To receive their triggers, ArmaLite purchasers need only forward their warranty registration card (if not already on file) to ArmaLite, a sales receipt as proof of purchase, $4 to cover shipping and insurance, and then return the single-stage trigger removed from their rifle to ArmaLite after receiving their new trigger.

Mark A. Westrom, president, said, "The new trigger is an outstanding device. I’ve installed them in my personal rifles and know customers will be pleased, too."

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Briley Imports Mausers

Briley Mfg. Co. of Houston has been selected as the exclusive importer of Mauser rifles in North America. Briley will distribute Mauser’s M 98 and the newer M 03 bolt-action models, both of which are built in Germany.

The original Mauser M 98 is based on drawings from 1936 and respective Mauser patents. The Mauser M 03 bolt-action hunting rifle offers interchangeable barrels.

For more information on purchasing Mauser rifles, contact Briley at (800) 331-5718, www.briley.com/ or www.mauser-usa.net/.

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CZ-USA Offers Lefty CZ 452 Americans

CZ-USA has begun offering its bolt-action CZ 452 rimfire rifles in left-handed models, the first such models in the CZ rifle line. The CZ 452 American LH comes with a five-round detachable magazine and sells for $425 in .22 LR and $443 in .17 HMR. The company has also begun chambering the CZ 453 bolt-action rimfire in .17 HMR in both the varmint and American models. The gun comes with a single-set trigger adjustable down to 2 pounds in standard operation or 0.5 pound in the set mode. MSRP for the CZ 453 American and Varmint is $530 in .22 LR and .17 Mach 2; $560 in .17 HMR.

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Ed Brown Coating

Ed Brown’s Gen III coating technology, a thermoset polymer formula, is now available on all of the company’s guns.

Gen III has a 9H hardness test, which is maximum for this scale. Gen III is available in black only, which looks identical in color to traditional matte finished bluing.

Gen III pricing for new Ed Brown firearms runs $200 for a rifle treatment, which covers all metal on the rifle except rings. That’s also the price for a handgun treatment that covers all metal except sights, barrel and bushing, trigger, springs, small pins, and grips. 1911 upper or lower coatings cost $100 each.

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Kimber Reintroduces Ultra RCP II

Kimber has begun building the Ultra RCP II again, billing it as the smallest, lightest concealed carry 1911 .45 ACP ever manufactured.

The Ultra RCP II is built in the Kimber Custom Shop specifically for carry and backup. The magazine release, hammer, beavertail grip safety and thumb safety have been bobbed and reshaped for a smaller signature, and the rear of the frame and the mainspring housing are rounded. Thin, black-micarta grip panels are fluted to match the front strap, and the black-anodized aluminum frame and the matte-black slide carry a KimPro II self-lubricating finish and a carry melt treatment. The slide has a machined sighting trough.

The Ultra RCP II weighs in at 25 ounces with a 7-round magazine. Suggested retail price is $1217.

Kimber has also rolled out a compact 9mm pistol called the Aegis II, another Custom Shop product. With a 3-inch barrel and compact frame, this pistol weighs 25 ounces. The slide is matte black atop a satin silver frame, and the grips are slim rosewood ball-milled models. The slide has the KimPro II finish, wide cocking serrations, a flat top and Tactical wedge tritium night sights. The aluminum frame is finished in satin silver KimPro II, has 30-lpi checkering on the front strap, a high relief cut under the trigger guard, bumped and grooved beavertail grip safety, a solid target trigger, matching silver small parts and holds an 8-round magazine. The trigger, chamber and barrel are match grade.

One of the most important features is the carry melt treatment on both the frame and slide, which rounds corners and edges. Suggested retail price is $1195.

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Three Product Intros for Ruger

Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc. introduced three new products at the NRA Annual Meeting:

• The Ruger Super Redhawk Alaskan is now available in .44 Magnum/.44 Special chamberings. The double-action stainless-steel magnum revolver comes with a 2.5-inch barrel.

• The Ruger Stainless Steel 10/22 Target Rifle is outfitted with a fully adjustable synthetic stock, similar to competition stocks. The shooter can adjust the stock for length of pull, stock cant, and comb height. The new rifle also sports Ruger’s heavy target-crowned hammer-forged target barrel.

• The Ruger No. 1 .30-06 Centennial Commemorative single shot rifle is Ruger’s tribute to America’s most favorite rifle cartridge. It is engraved in a classic American scroll pattern and gold inlaid with a .30-06 cartridge and the inscription ".30-06 – 1906-2006."

It will be made in limited quantities throughout 2006.