Last year’s inaugural Guns and Tactical Show was a great success. The co-organizers, Lanz Shooting Supplies and Code of Arms took lessons learned and made this year’s live fire trade show even better!
Some of the changes included modifying the show hours, limiting VIP tickets to 100, each with 2-day access, a larger swag bag, entry into prize draws, and a complimentary ammo ticket. And most importantly, more guns! I think there were about 100 on the line!
I attended with two of my shooting buddies, TheShmoo and Dave, both of whom have been to several shooting events and both of whom came away thinking that GAT Show was very well organized. The volume of guns and spread over 8 ranges meant we never had to wait in a long line. There was also great signage listing each gun on each range so it was easy to find what you wanted to shoot. Just very well done!
And that brings me to my main caveat of this review. Typically, I like to post pics of every gun shot by every member of my party. However, given that we each shot at least 10 guns and that we split up at times, that was not feasible. So keep in mind that our experience was even bigger than what is being posted in this review!
Part 1: The Tent
GAT show is divided into two main parts, a “tent” featuring a number of vendors and the live fire “try before you buy” spread across 8 of Silverdale’s ranges.
As is usually my routine for such events, I hit the vendors first, heading straight to visit my friends at Code of Arm’s
to pick up one of their t-shirts….
And to pick up a copy of the latest High Capacity magazine, featuring my first article, The Guns of John Wick!
Note in the above pics I am wearing my new HuntersHD Gold Aviators…thanks to Sean from Freedom Ventures for introducing me to these purpose built shooting glasses…not only are they photochromic, they meet or exceed milspecs for perspiration resistance, ultraviolet stability, salt spray resistance, heat resistance, solvent resistance, abrasion resistance, and flexibility…the lenses are incredibly clear and I can’t wait to try them on the range today
The crew from Firearms Outlet Canada were on site to sell tickets to the upcoming TACCOM show.
It was great to chat about the show. I already have a media pass but wow, the more I hear about TACCOM the more excited I become! In addition to Chris Costa, there will be other well known US trainers at the show as well as manufacturers from the US and Europe. A 40+ page programme listing all exhibitors will be released soon. Not sure how much more I can divulge here but wow, you do not want to miss this show!
As an aside, I must say that I like to see this comradery in the gun community…none of this “TACCOM is a competing show so they cant sell tickets here” nonsense. Thanks for sticking together GAT and TACCOM.
Next a check-in at Vortex to get more details on some of the optics they have will have on the shooting line…always educational.
I met the guys from Patch Panel at last year’s show and since that time I have become a lot more into patches, or at least have now realized how much I like them lol. Indeed I am not alone as I found out that some collector patches can command significant amounts of money, as in up to $1,800!
I really liked this Glockamole patch
This Deadpool collector patch has been seen for around $350 on the secondary market!
Patch Panel also does custom laser-cut work
I picked up a couple of patches as well.
Next stop, host Lanz Shooting Supplies..
Where I found one of the most beautiful guns of the show, a Colt Python! I think the Python is a great match to my Aviators with their removalble side shields lol
As well as another interesting revolver, the Chiappa Rhino, which was on my list to shoot.
Two more guns on my list to try, the Angstadt Arms UDP and Chiappa Little Badger (which sadly I did not end up shooting)
More of the Lanz display
Ragnarok Tactical for your safety needs
Whether they be medical supplies
Or body armour
We ran into Tracey Wilson …the last time I took a picture of Dave and Tracey, it ended up in the CCFR’s Down Range TV show…let’s see what happens this time lol
Black Bear Gear with Warrior Assault Systems and Eickhorn-Solingen Edged Combat & Rescue Knives
N.A.S. Guns and Ammo
Part 2: The Range
TheShmoo and I saw the Glock 48 during one of our gun store tours last week and we were anxious to shoot it so we hit the Glock range first.
It is hard to describe but it is pretty much how I expected a single stack Glock would feel. Again, my personal Glocks are at the opposite end of the grip spectrum so I think it would take some getting used to…the bottom line is that it was a little better than I thought but I am not ready to buy one.
Next TheShmoo wanted to try the Shadow 2…and he liked it a lot!
Dave already has a Shadow so he also wanted to compare it against the Shadow 2. He said that you can definitely feel a difference but he didn’t like the red-dot mounted on this one. Later in the day he ended up shooting another Shadow 2 without a red-dot and he much preferred that one.
Next stop, Tactical Imports
Where they had a nice selection of Type 81s, MK 1919 shotgun and my gun of choice, the BRS-99!
I put four mags through the BRS-99 last year and loved it so wanted to give the “Polish UZI” another whirl…you don’t see these too often
Yup, loved it
Dave also liked it but would get it with the non-restricted longer barrel
The NFA was right next to Tactical Imports and they had a staggering array of guns all the way up to a .50BMG. I really liked the fact that they brought some prohib revolvers, very “on brand” with their “No Compromise” positioning. TheShmoo shot two of them and preferred the little snubbie in .38.
Last year I missed shooting the Skorpion and I wasn’t going to make that same mistake again. It was nice but I should have put a few mags through it to really get the feel.
The STAG10 was also on my list. I have never shot an AR platform in .308. I realize that .308 is much bigger than .223 but I guess I was expecting the AR platform to tame the recoil a but more than it did. As such, I think I will stick to .223. By contrast, Dave liked the punch of the .308.
Next stop, North Sylva for another one on my list, the HK SFP9. I had shot the P30L at SHOT show and wasn’t crazy about the trigger so I thought the SFP might be a bit better in that regard and my hypothesis was confirmed.
Lanz had quite a few of the guns that I wanted to try.
Including the Angstadt Arms UDP…the Sig MPX shown next to it, made me a believer out of AR platforms in 9mm. Indeed, the MPX is one of my favourite guns and having the ability to use Glock mags is a huge bonus. That having been said, and I don’t mean to offend Angstadt owners, the MPX feels like a way superior gun. Yes, the Sig is more expensive, but I would pay that difference.
I am used to shooting revolvers in single action and in bigger calibers so the 9mm Chiappa with its low barrel was an interesting sensation. I thought it was ok while Dave loved it and said he would “buy one any day”
My favourite gun at the Lanz booth turned out to be the S-W M&P..i haven’t shot one for years but I hear so many good things about them that I wanted to give it another try…very easy to shoot and all hits were on the steel plate.
Ok a quick snack before moving on…some great food trucks this year including Bacon Crazy where I had the won tons stuffed with bacon and hot sauce and covered in maple syrup
As we passed by O’Dell’s booth I saw my favourite AR, the F1, now fitted with a HIPERFIRE trigger…I was planning to shoot it again but did not end up doing so.
Lots of great stuff at the SIG booth including the 320 in a RONI micro conversion kit and the new MPX Copperhead edition with its 4.5” barrel!
I also shot the MK25
It was great chatting with the rep from Evans Group, shown here with their rotating magazine shotgun
Evans are the distributors for Springfield Armory and I love their 1911s (I am actually on the list for one of their FBI guns). Here is TheShmoo shooting one of the M1As
Next over to Vortex for more precision gun shooting out of custom builds with Custom German Gun and PSE stocks.
Last but certainly not least, the monster Cadex Tremor and Dave’s absolute favourite gun of the day.
So just to recap, here are the guns that I shot in order of my preference:
1 Sig MPX Copperhead
2 BRS 99
3 CZ Scorpion
4 HK SFP9-SD
5 Sig P320 RONI
6 Smith & Wesson M&P
7 Sig MK25
8 Glock 48
9 Chiappa Charging Rhino
10 Angstadt Arms UDP
11 Stag 10 AR10
Once again, fantastic job organizing GAT Show…we all had a great time and agree that this one of Canada’s “big three” must attend events, along with TACCOM and Wolverine Days.