I was recently in DFW on business when I got a message from a friend of mine I went to school with (undergrad) back in the mid 90s.
He shot me an invite to the 2016 DFW Gun Show at the Will Rogers Memorial Center. I did a quick lookup on Google and found that it is billed as Texas’ largest gun show with some 1200 tables on display.
I commuted the 30 minutes in from Burleson where I was staying (a convenient location for working at one of our shops in Crowley, Tx). On arrival to the site I purchased a lot pass. It cost me about $10.00 for parking for the day (not bad for municipal parking) and another $7.00 for the show access pass.
Being Texas (or maybe being Brad) my buddy shows up with his Concealed Carry. He has taken the critical “always carry” commitment. And in order to make this work day to day he has allowed himself more than one carry option. The “less is more” track won out for the day and he brought His Kahr CW .380 along with him. Since show regulations required all loaded firearms to remain outside the venue, he left it in his car and we RV’ed inside the main doors after executing the all too common “I’m over this way” cellular technique.
Ironically, one of the first tables we came across was littered with subcompact sized pistols, including an exact copy of his.
I picked it up and checked it out. It really is smaller than you might expect. I normally choose and use a Glock 19, but the size of this little guy is about perfect for jogging or summer shorts. Just about anywhere that the size and weight of a mid or full sized pistol would be compromising.
Now I know… some of the “the only handgun God intended for killing a man is a .45 ACP” crowd are losing their mind right now. But seriously folks. No handgun is reliably stopping fights with a single round, CNS trauma shot. I’m NOT saying that a .380 matches (let alone beats) a more serious defensive pistol caliber. What I AM saying is that a concealed .380 beats the shit out of a ball point pen or ice pick (unless, possibly, you’re Doug Marcaida’s long lost twin).
Next, we checked out a table chalk full o’Beretta. I wanted to dwell here a bit because a friend of mine still on Active Duty with 3rd Battalion PPCLI has a mind to buy himself one of the new M9a3 pistols.
I’ve shot an M92FS in defensive pistol classes and competition for a few years and do get some of the attraction. I liken it to driving standard. Or dinner by candle light. While the controls may require more interaction than a Glock or similar single mode, striker fired pistol it is a boat load of fun to shoot the DA/SA. More importantly, as a common semi automatic pistol in MIL/LE circles, I find it to be something that any serious shooter should display some competency in using.
One item I came across is strong on the personal curiosity list, and that is the FN FNX .45
Two things really surprised me on this pistol. First, the trigger on this DA/SA gun was extremely smooth. Definitely better than the aforementioned M92FS I shot for two years. Second, for a full sized (plus) auto pistol, this didn’t have the boat anchor feeling that you get from a similar sized pistol such as the H&K Socom Mk23. I honestly cant say it fills any niche for me outside of a really cool, extremely fun overt pistol. Ah. Who am I kidding. I loved it. It looks like a hell of a lot of fun and the want didn’t go away by its first impression…
There was a whole lot to see at this show and I’ll be back in part two and part three articles to talk about some of our other encounters at the show.