News Brief – 8/24

Michael Crites

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In this week’s gun news the biggest ammo oof in modern history, Kimber makes the R7 Facebook official, Smith & Wesson goes Kel-Tec KSG, and Taurus makes it easy to TORO.

Kiss that Russki ammo a hard goodbye

tula wolf 556 5.56 steel case 223 (1)
до свидания друг!

The State Department on Aug. 20 came out of left field and threw a wet blanket on the already struggling consumer ammunition market by adding all ammo “manufactured or located in” Russia to a growing list of sanctions against Moscow.

While the sanction could (but probably will never) fall off in a year, you can probably wave goodbye to deals on Russian-made ammo (Barnaul, Red Army Standard, Tula, and Wolf, etc.) that were among the only lines you could still get during the great ammo crunch of 2020.

This will also make it hard to keep guns chambered in former Warsaw Pact calibers (5.45×45, 7.62×25 Tokarev, 7.62×39, 7.62x54R, and 9×18 Makarov) running on a budget. Most of these calibers aren’t made, affordably, in the U.S., leaving just a few overseas makers like Czech-based Sellier & Belliot and Serbia’s Prvi Partizan, as about the only viable players left.

Going further, even if you don’t shoot that lowbrow “steel cased Russian stuff,” such affordable ammo had the effect of keeping more traditional brass cased ammo prices in check. A safety valve on demand if you will. The bottom line, ammo is fixing to get even more scarce and expensive.

Kimber's New R7

As we already told you guys a couple of weeks ago, Kimber was set to debut their first polymer-framed striker-fired pistol, a micro-compact 9mm meant to compete with the Sig P365 and the like. Well, the Alabama-based company went ahead and released the R7 Mako last week.

The rundown is that it is the same size and capacity as other micro compacts such as the P365, Ruger MAX-9, and Springfield Armory Hellcat; is optics-ready with a Shield pattern RMSc footprint, has what is billed as a good trigger, and comes standard with TruGlo Tritium Pro u-notch sights.

It ships with two magazines– a flush-fit 11+1 as well as an extended 13+1 mag– and in two variants, the $599 (suggested) base model and a $799 optics-installed model with a $179 Crimson Trace CTS-1500 red dot on top.

We’ll let you do the math on that one.

S&W M&P 12 Shotgun

S&W M&P 12 Shotgun

Smith & Wesson used to make shotguns back in the 1970s in Massachusetts and has imported them from overseas since then but last week the company announced they are back in the 12 gauge category with the new M&P 12

A compact and maneuverable pump-action bullpup, Smith says it is “purpose-built for protection and a blast to shoot at the range.” Each of its two magazine tubes can hold seven 2.75-inch shells (one fewer in each when using 3-inch mags), giving a theoretical 14+1 capacity.

Importantly, the M&P 12 can run mini shells as well, giving it upwards of 20 shells on tap when doing so. The MSRP on the new M&P12 shotgun is $1,165.

We aren’t gonna lie, it looks a lot like a Kel-Tec KSG with an S&W M&P pistol grip on it, at a price that is a few hundo more, but for those who aren’t a fan of Florida Man guns and trust “Big Blue,” the M&P 12 could hit the spot.

Taurus Optics-ready Slides Available

Taurus TORO

Offering an easy upgrade to owners of Taurus G3 and G3C pistols who are interested in adding optics to their 9mm pistols, Taurus is now marketing Taurus Optic Ready Option, or TORO, conversion kits.

These optics-ready slides include steel Glock pattern front and rear sights and hardware/plates to accommodate Trijicon RMR, Holosun, Leupold Delta Point Pro, Vortex Venom, Doctor Noble, Burris Fast Fire, Sightmark Mini, and C-More STS footprint red dots.

All the owner would have to do is remove their existing slide, swap the barrel, and recoil spring from their existing G3/G3C, add their optic and reinstall the new slide on their gun. The cost is $149.

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