Every day, it seems, manufacturers are announcing more new products for 2004. With the holiday buying season over, dealers now turn their attention to judging the newest offerings to determine what will be the hot-selling, moneymakers for the new business year.
Here is our second look at the new products of 2004. In our February issue, we'll examine new products and programs announced at the National Association of Sporting Goods Wholesalers Hunting Show. That will be followed by our extensive coverage of the SHOT Show in our April issue.
NEW FIREARMS -- 2004
Sturm, Ruger & Co
Ruger is introducing five rifles in the new .204 Ruger cartridge, which it developed with Hornady. The .204 Ruger shares the same case head and overall length dimensions as the .222 Remington Magnum, but uses a slender new .20-caliber, 32-grain, V-Max bullet. The .204 Ruger has an efficient ballistic coefficient of 0.192 and a muzzle velocity of 4,225 feet per second.
The rifles chambered in .204 Ruger include three Ruger M77 MKII bolt-action rifles. They are the M77R in blued steel with a cut-checkered American walnut stock, the KM77RLFP Ultralight All-Weather in stainless steel with a synthetic stock and a light-contour barrel, and the Target Grey KM77VT Target rifle in stainless steel with a brown, laminated wood stock, heavy target barrel, and two-stage target trigger.
The Ruger No. 1 single-shot models chambered in .204 Ruger are the No. 1 Standard in blued steel with a cut-checkered American walnut stock and the No. 1 Stainless Varminter in stainless steel with a black, laminated stock.
The new .204 Ruger models will be available in March 2004.
Savage Arms Co.
Savage Arms is featuring its award-winning AccuTrigger on all its hunting models beginning in 2004. The Savage AccuTrigger Model 12BVSS received the 2003 Rifle of the Year from the Shooting Industry Academy of Excellence.
The AccuTrigger also has been added to the Savage 10ML-II Muzzleloader line, which includes the Model 10MLSS-II Camo--Stainless in Realtree Hardwoods HD.
All new for 2004 is the Model 40 Varmint Hunter. The single-shot bolt-action features a varmint-style laminated stock with a wide beavertail forend, 24-inch heavy contour, button-rifled, free-floating barrel and a third swivel stud for use with bipod. It's available in .22 Hornet and .223 Rem.
The Model 12 Varminter Low Profile is the newest addition to Savage's Varmint Series Rifles. It has a low-profile, laminated stock with an extra-wide beavertail forend. The stainless-steel action, chambered in the .223 and .22-250, is dual-pillar bedded and the button-rifled barrel is free-floating.
Smith & Wesson
Smith & Wesson is adding two 1911s to its line-up in 2004. The Model SW1911 Adjustable has all the features of the SW1911 introduced last year, plus a target-configured, microclick adjustable rear sight. It also has an enhanced slide-to-frame fit, an ambidextrous safety lever, an ergonomically improved grip safety, 20-line per-inch checkering on the front strap and Cocobolo wood grips.
The Model SW1911 Scandium Commander has a 4 1/4-inch barrel in the true Commander style. All original after-market Commander add-ons fit the gun. Other features include Cocobolo wood grips, a grooved front strap and an external extractor.
The Model 22A-Camo offers Smith's rimfire pistol with a Mossy Oak Break-Up finish.
The Model 500 is now available with a 3-inch barrel (4-inch overall with standard compensator). Additional nonported and ported compensators of various lengths and patterns also will be available.
The Model 325PD .45 ACP, in Scandium/Titanium, weighs 21.5 ounces, has a 2 3/4-inch barrel, adjustable rear sight, HiViz front sight and six-round capacity.
A new addition to the AirLite line of revolvers, the seven-shot .22 Magnum Model 351 has an aluminum alloy frame with a 2-inch barrel.
From the Performance Center, the Model 327 is an eight-shot, Titanium and Scandium Alloy frame revolver chambered in .357 Magnum. It has a 2-inch shrouded-sleeve barrel. The Model 952 Stainless single-action pistol in 9mm features an adjustable black target rear sight, a firing pin block safety system independent of trigger pull, hand-fitted frame-to-slide and a match grade 410 stainless steel barrel.
The Model 642 is now offered with Crimson Trace Laser-grips, and the Model 637 Carry Combo and Model 908S Carry Combo are packaged with an Uncle Mike's Kydex belt holster.
Rossi's MiniLoader inline muzzleloading rifles are designed for the young hunter and shooter. The MiniLoaders in .45 and .50 caliber are 32 inches long with 20-inch barrels. They feature Tru-Glo sights, collapsible brass and wood ramrods and youth-size Monte Carlo stocks of Brazilian hardwood with recoil pads and white spacers.
The MiniLoaders will be offered in youth-sized Matched Set 3-barrel combinations. They will be...