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thedrifter
01-11-07, 08:35 PM
The only gear show that really matters

SHOT Show debuts the latest and greatest — 14 acres worth
By C. Mark Brinkley - cmark@militarytimes.com
Posted : Thursday Jan 11, 2007 11:32:58 EST

ORLANDO, Fla. — Let the world have its cars and gadgets — there’s only one trade show happening this week as far as we’re concerned.

The 2007 Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor Trade Show and Conference — better known as SHOT Show — kicks off today in grand fashion, bigger than ever. How big? More than 616,000 square feet, enough to cover the flight deck of an aircraft carrier three times and still have some left over.

Packed wall to wall with all of the latest and greatest in field gear and weapons from 1,800 of the largest (and, sometimes, the still unknown) names in the tactical and outdoor outfitting business, the show at the Orange County Convention Center is closed to the general public and is still poised to draw more than 40,000 attendees this week.

Including us, your favorite gear junkies. Using a four-person recon team to cover every corner of the building over the next four days, Military Times will bring you daily updates hot off the showroom floor, including first looks at a number of never before seen items that will leave you rolling your pennies and wishing Santa would make another fly-by.

Who can think about Apple’s new iPhone when BlackHawk is rolling out a new flip-and-slice blade styled after the butterfly knives that filled so many restless moments of our misspent youth? They’ve made a great thing better, by altering the opening mechanism so that you can’t slice your fingers while restlessly click-clacking it open and closed.

Or maybe you’d prefer the new Aimpoint red-dot gun sight that draws so little battery power you never have to turn it off?

You’ll see them here first, along with plenty of other gadgets and gizmos and tons of traditional weapons and gear sure to fill needs you didn’t even know you had. We spent Wednesday checking out the “pre-event” action at the Orange County Sheriff’s Range, where we sent rounds flying, manhandled some new flashlights, played with switchblades and talked gear until our tongues could barely wag.

Now we get to do it all over again. If you haven’t looked at our teaser video, give it a click to set the mood. Then check back all week for your new gear fix.

There’s 14 acres of gear inside here. Surely, we’ll find something you like

Ellie