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Some Cool Things from SHOT Show 2013

I’ve been going to the SHOT – Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade – Show for around ten years.  If you want to know what new firearms, ammunition and accoutrement are coming out for any calendar year (and new product releases are usually broken down into quarters of the year, i.e. this new product will be coming out in the second quarter of this year, etc.) then you have to go to SHOT.

Here are some of the smaller but extremely worthy products I saw at SHOT and have subsequently tested:

Trojan Horse Long Gun Case: The email conversation between a detective on my agency and me went like this, “Hey, KD is there a case available to more discreetly carry my M4 carbine?”  The detective was concerned that transferring his carbine in a standard plastic gun case from one trunk to another in the parking deck which is shared with a local university might invite a car break in and gun theft.  While several products are currently available I came across the Trojan Horse Long Gun case at the Media Day at the range which is put on by SHOT.

The 40” long by 15” wide case is completely “non-gun” in appearance and is reminiscent of a tennis racket bag or similar sporting goods case but is designed to carry an M4 or similar with the magazine inserted.  Comp-Tac was kind enough to supply a Trojan Horse case for T&E.  It is a well-made tear shaped, padded “coated polyester” design.  The black with white stripe outer cover does not “print” or show the outline of the carbine contained.  With molle straps on one side and Velcro on the other, the Trojan Horse will easily carry your carbine, a spare mag and has a separate small 4” by 4” pocket.  The case can carry a carbine up to 20” barrel if the carbine has an adjustable stock which can be collapsed.  Many officers are transporting their own carbines back and forth from work and the Trojan Horse case reduces unwanted attention while carrying or transporting the carbine in public.  I can think of several stakeout and dignitary protection details as well as everyday car carry that the case would be perfect for.

International Holster: Comp-Tac also provided an outside the belt holster, their International model for my Glock 19.  This Kydex rig was shipped with a straight drop with a belt slot for a 1 ½ inch belt.  The international can be set up with an off-set belt mount for competition or a paddle rig but for LE carry I like belt scabbards and straight drop holsters.  I’m wearing the holster right now as I pen these words.  Having carried the rig for several days it is form fitted with adequate retention based on retention screws and molding to securely carry my pistol.  Draw-strokes from the International are smooth and my Glock reholsters with a reassuring “pop” indicating it’s secure.  I like this well made and well-designed holster which conceals easily under a jacket or vest.

Professional Model: Nate “squared” tactical is a holster company run by two guys named…wait for it…Nate.  And real nice guys as well.  Nate Johnson and Nate Beard have come out with a very comfortable inside the waistband design which is manufactured in Lexington, North Carolina.

As anyone knows who has carried concealed inside the waistband, it tends to be a tad uncomfortable.  Matter-of-fact, eminent firearms trainer Clint Smith has said it this way, “Concealed handguns are supposed to be comforting, not comfortable…”  That said what if a holster design allowed discreet carry and was both comfortable as well as comforting?  Would that not pique your interest?  It did mine and when I met Nate Johnson at the N82Tactical booth in Vegas, we exchanged cards and their new Professional holster arrived at my doorstep.  The newest inside the belt rig in their line features a molded polycarbonate holster which is molded to the model of handgun you carry.  The holster is riveted to the two Nate’s specially designed backing pad.  The pad protects your body from the metal/polymer of your pistol and is constructed of: a soft suede, which sits next to your skin; a neoprene layer (to provide the padding) sandwiched between the suede and an oil tanned leather layer which attaches to the actual molded holster.  The combination is a resultant comfortable carry rig which you can wear all day without the usual discomfort associated with inside the belt carry (indentations in your side, bruises, chaffing, a sweat covered pistol, etcetera.  The holster attaches to your belt via a spring clip which can be rotated for personal tastes in positioning (straight drop, butt forward, butt back).

The Professional includes the N82Tactical “Twist Release System” which provides retention for the holstered handgun and requires a slight press into your body to release.

The ultimate test in this type of concealed carry holster is in carrying the handgun for a protracted period.  I did that out of the box and the gun pretty much disappeared.  The backing pad does not increase bulk and tends to conform to the pistol and your body with regular carry.  The Twist Release System was easily adapted to even though my regular duty carry is not similar.

N82Tactical and their Professional model as well as their Original and Original Tuckable models will allow you to carry concealed off duty or while working plainclothes while making gun carry a little bit comfortable.  And who would argue with that?

There’s a lot more to cover from Vegas and the SHOT Show.  As products hit the market throughout the year we will cover him at for your perusal.


 N82 Tactical