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What's new in hunting? A hunting products round-up for the 1992 season.

With Autumm just around the comer, Shooting Industry thought it timely to review some of the more interesting hunting-related products that debuted in '92. Here's a look at the products your hunting customers will be asking for on their way out to the field.


From Westmont, N.J., Steiner's "Hunting" line of 6x30, 8x30, and 7x50 binoculars all boast the same lens coating introduced in the company's Penetrator rifle scopes. Designated CAT for "Color Adjusted Transmission," this process is said to provide greater contrast between the brown color of game and the background forest under the typical lighting conditions of dawn and dusk.

All three models are of traditional Porro prism design with polycarbonate bodies and green rubber armoring.


John Underwood, working in Mocksville, N.C., has come up with the slickest set of shooting sticks I've seen yet. The steadiest portable rifle rest has always been a simple bipod formed by two sticks crossed at the desired height and held at the intersection by the off hand. The rifle's forearm rests in the "V."

Underwood has made the rest lighter and a lot more portable by using two three-foot lengths of aluminum arrow shaft, each cut into three sections and fit with elastic-corded ferrules so they collapse into a 13-inch-long package, but stay together as a disjointed unit.

To extend the bipod you simply hold onto one end and let the sections drop; in so doing they assemble themselves as the elastic pulls each section into its ferrule. The two legs are held together by a flexible neoprene joint that allows the sticks to be spread to any angle for height adjustment. The top portion of each leg is covered with a rubber-like sleeve for friction and to protect the stock.


The Hoppes' folks (a division of Penguin Industries in Coatesville, Pa.) have come up with a clever new 100-yard sighting-in target called the Crosshair. The central aiming point consists of a 6-inch fluorescent circle with a nonprinted, 1-inch-wide crosshair pattern through its center. In other words, the "crosshair" portion of the target is wide enough that when a scope's reticle is superimposed, there's a little "daylight" on both sides of the crosshairs which aids centering.

The large central aiming point is surrounded by smaller ones in each comer of the 14-inch square paper, so once shooters have rough zeroed the gun, they can fine tune using the other four aiming points. They come shrink-wrapped in packages of 20 or 100.


This highly respected, Beaverton, Ore.-based scope maker has come up with a real hunter's variable scope in the form of its new 1.75-6x32 Vari-X III. This scope is short, light, compact, and has all the magnification needed for almost any big game situation -- from charging nasties just off the muzzle, to ... well, as far away as a hunter would want to risk a shot.

With its 32mm objective lens, this scope provides a 5.3mm exit pupil at the 6x setting, and a much larger one at the lower powers. This newest of Leupold's scopes also boasts Multicoat 4 lens coating.

Unfortunately, most of the buying public is "power happy" when it comes to scopes, so this excellent medium-power variable is probably not going to be as popular as it deserves to be.


For those legions of .30-30 owners who will shortly take to the woods, Nosler of Bend, Ore., has introduced a 170-grain, round-nosed bullet in its vaunted Partition line. Granted, the percentage of handloaders among .30-30 owners is probably about as low as you're going to find, but at least that select group can now avail themselves to one of the premium game bullets available anywhere. That alone makes it worthy of mention.


This round-up just wouldn't be complete without the new Winchester Model 70 Featherweight Classic. I just can't say enough about this new rifle: it's better, more handsome, and less expensive in today's dollars that the pre-'64 ever was. If the Model 70 is indicative of where the new U.S. Repeating Arms is headed -- and I think it is -- there'll be lots of exciting things coming out of New Haven, Conn., especially now that there's a brand new manufacturing facility in the works.


Southport, Conn.-based Ruger sure did their homework on the new Model 77 Mark II varmint rifle. The all-brown, laminated stock is a great choice for a precision rifle; it's far more stable than homogeneous Walnut and has a lot more personality (if you will) than fiberglass, not to mention that each is one-of-a-kind.

Since this type of gun is shot almost exclusively from a bench or on one's belly, the stock has the high comb, tight grip curve, and wide forend of a competition gun.

This rifle also marks a couple of other firsts for the company. For one, it's the first to wear a barrel that Ruger makes using recently acquired hammer forging machines. Secondly, they are using a buttress-style rifling whereby the non-working, trailing edge of each land is feathered away; this reduces bullet deformation, friction, and fouling, and provides for a better gas seal behind.


Browning of Morgan, Utah, has taken its popular, bottom-ejecting BPS pump shotgun and come up with a special slug version called the Deer Special. For increased accuracy, the mating of barrel and receiver is made to tighter tolerances to better simulate the performance characteristics of a bolt-action rifle. With its 5-inch rifled accessory tube attached to its 20 1/2-inch smoothbore barrel, Browning claims 1 3/4-inch groups at 100 yards from a benchrest using premium-type sabot ammo. The receiver comes equipped with a one-piece, Weaver-type base for mounting scopes of conventional eye relief.

By unscrewing the rifled tube and replacing it with an Extra Full Invector choke, your customer has a dynamite turkey gun. The barrel comes equipped with adjustable sights and the stock has a medium-high comb that's a compromise between scope and iron sight use.


Savage of Westfield, Mass., apparently did well enough with the first stainless steel version of their Model 110 bolt-action rifle last year that they've added a new, detachable clip model of the same gun for '92. Designated the 116 FCS, it wears the same black synthetic stock as its fixed-magazine forebear, the 116 FSS.

As long as there a choice, hunters will be arguing the pros and cons of the detachable "clip." Seems that those who use 'em, love 'em, and believe they provide an added safety factor along with the obvious convenience. Those who don't like 'em, really don't like 'em. Savage, however, has a product for either customer.


Extended Range ammo was Wilmington, Del.-based Remington's response last year to the competition's premium-type centerfire ammunition. This year six new loadings have been added to the nine already in the ER line: the .243 and 6mm Rem. both get a 105-grain load; the .257 Roberts and .25-06 have a 122-grain projectile; the 7mm-08, a 154-grain slug; and a 165-grain load for the 7mm Weatherby Magnum.

Like all ER offerings, these new loadings feature bullets of very high ballistic coefficient to maximize downrange energy retention.


COPYRIGHT 1992 Publishers' Development Corporation
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Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Author:Sundra, Jon
Publication:Shooting Industry
Date:Aug 1, 1992
Previous Article:Firearm production by U.S. manufacturers: 1991.
Next Article:Sports South: dealers of the round table.

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