This past Tuesday was the opening day of SHOT Show and as usual it was a busy day. Our new store general manager Jeff is attending the show with me this year to get intense Sports Optics training. He has over 35 years experiance in the camera side of the business and now he's learning the Sports optics side as well.

My first meeting was over at Vortex.
This year they did not release a slew of new scopes and I think this was a wise move. Let them catch up on back orders of the scopes that they released last year before announcing a slew of new products.
The good news is that they did announce some price decreases, YES, decreases.
Vortex Razor HD 5-20x50 reduced to $1699.99
All the Diamnondback HP scopes have been reduced
Vortex Razor Red Dot's reduced to $399.99
Vortex VMX-3T reduced to $199.99
Vanquish 8x26 Binoculars reduced to $94.99 and the 10x26 Binocular reduced to $99.99

The few new products that were announced are very exciting.....

The most exciting announcement is the new Vortex Strike Eagle 1-6x24 - AR BDC (MOA) Reticle (Part# SE-1624-1)
We normally do not accept pre-orders, however, on this scope we will make an exception. This scope is on par with a Viper series riflescope as far as optical quality and it is priced at only $329.99. It is a best buy for 3 gun, Coyote or dangerous game. A true 1x power made for speed and versatility. This really is a scope to take a look at.
We have been assured that as soon as Vortex gets deliveries we are at the top of the ship list so we can fill the pre-orders.
Figure late March/early April.

Vortex Viper Red Dot (6 MOA Dot) (Part# VRD-6) @ only $229.99 is a great release as well. Made for handguns with cutout slides, awesome for co-witnessing with iron-sights and it offers 30,000 hours illumination on a battery at its brightest setting.

For AR's and Shotguns they have the new Vortex Venom Red Dot (3 MOA Dot) (Part# VMD-3103)
also @ $229.99. This Red-Dot will hold up to any recoil and features a topload CR-1632 button battery for easy exchange. The brightness control is on the left side.

The Vortex Crossfire binocular series got their third makeover in about 5 years. This time this very inexpensive binocular shows itself as a very nice, more than its catagoy suggests, optic. Available in 8x42, 10x42, 10x50 & 12x50 all priced below $200.00.
They expect delivery around late March.

As usual we poked and pushed for some great deals.
We are offering the Vortex Crossfire II 6-24x50 AO - V-Plex (MOA) (Part# CF2-31043) for only $199.99 and including a free neoprene scope cover as well.

We also will be receiving more of the Viper 6.5-20x44 BDC reticle riflescopes at reduced pricing.

It was time to run over to Swarovski which I always look forward to as I have some very good friends there. Today, as usual, is social as well as business.

I was very excited to see their new SRT-80 Illuminated Reticle Spotting Scope.. Thanks to its crystal-clear HD optics and 80mm objective diameter, the STR 80 spotting scope provides impressive detail recognition, as well as bright, lifelike images, even in poor lighting conditions. The STR 80 spotting scope’s illuminated reticle, which can be activated and deactivated, allows you to comfortably switch between accurately estimating distances and uninterrupted viewing. It is also perfect for documenting events while digiscoping. The powerful HD optics with fluoride-containing lenses and the reticle with MOA impact point correction make the perfect total package for accurate observation.
Available in your choice of MOA or MRAD with optional
It has been redesigned with Military use in mind for construction and durability. Double sealed for dust and weather protection.


 Offered with either Illuminated MOA or MRAD reticle
 Reticle will get larger or smaller with object in view as magnification is adjusted
 Excellent for estimating range
 Extremely useful to help shooter adjust shots in ¼ MOA or 0.10th MRAD increments at
long range
 Reticle can be completely removed from view so the STR 80 can be used as a regular
spotting scope
 There are 15 Brightness levels – 10 day levels, 5 night levels
 HD Optical system – resolution improvements allows for benefits such as bullet hole
identification in paper targets at long range (dependent upon range and atmospheric
 Fits SWAROVSKI OPTIK 20x60 or 25x50 wide angle eyepiece (sold separately)
 Powered by 1 CR123 battery
 Functional temperature -40°F to +158°F
 Accessories: 3 Picatinny rails and Winged eye cup (sold separately)
These are in stock and ready to ship.

The other item we discussed was their The Custom BT is available for Z6, Z5 or Z3 riflescopes with a Ballistic Turret (BT)
The Custom BT was designed for the SWAROVSKI OPTIK Ballistic Turret riflescope series. It
is a customized ring that can take the place of the 3 color coded distance rings that come with
every SWAROVSKI OPTIK BT riflescope. The custom BT is an elevation turret that shows
multiple down range distances in yards, rather than just the 3 color coded distance rings that
currently come with each BT riflescope. It is an intuitive, user friendly method of “dialing in”, or
setting the distance, with the elevation turret that any given shot requires.
The turret ring will be custom engraved by SWAROVSKI OPTIK to consumer ballistic
specifications, based upon a zero setting (i.e. 100, 200, 300 yards) chosen by the consumer.
Precise laser engraved settings will be in 50 yard increments. Maximum distances are
dependent upon the cartridge, zero setting and individual riflescope.
 The downrange yardage markings will be shown in more intuitive 50 and 100 yard
 Customized for individual factory rifle cartridges or hand loads.
 Atmospheric Conditions can be customized to the turret ring.
 Simply choose a zero distance, zero your rifle, and the turret will do the rest.
 This will allow for many more yardage settings that will not have to be memorized.
 The shooter will be able to simply range to the target, Ex: 550 yards, set his customized ring
to the 550 yard position, and shoot.

Having a few minutes I ran over to ScopeCoat
Having been in the optics industry for as long as I have it is the simple inexpensive accessory items that always catch my attention. The ScopeCoat neoprene covers IMO are no brainer protection for your riflescopes, spotting scopes and rangefinders.
They showed me the new cover for the Vortex Razor Spotting Scopes, which we ordered, to offer for only $29.99
We also ordered some for the Vortex StrikeFire Red Dot VMX-3T Magnifier (Part# VMX-3T) that you can also add to your order at only $12.99

Next up was Leica for a meeting with the boys in charge to see what was what.

They have released an exciting new line of Riflescopes that are designed and engineered in Germany & made in the USA. This new line of scopes was designed with the North American hunter in mind. They are everything you'd expect from Leica. Beautifully finished, sharp optically, really a precision instrument. Well done, and here's the unbelieveable part, they start at only $749.00. This may be the home run of SHOT Show this year.

 Highly usable 5:1 magnification ratio
 4” of extended eye-relief
 Precise and highly tactile ¼ moa turret adjustments
 Finger re-settable turret calibrations
 Balanced turret and main tube design for mounting flexibility
 Rugged one-piece main tube of Aerospace grade aluminum
 Waterproof and fog-proof go anywhere performance
 Low profile turrets perfect for saddle scabbards
 Generous windage and elevation adjustment ranges
Available in 6 models with a wide choice of reticles, a perfect match can be found for any hunting/shooting need.

New ER 5 Riflescopes Made in USA
#51080 ER 5 1-5 x 24, Plex @ $749.00
#51081 ER 5 1-5 x 24, 4A @ $749.00
#51082 ER 5 1-5 x 24, CirclePlex @ $779.00
#51083 ER 5 1-5 x 24, LE-TAC @ $779.00
#51040 ER 5 1.5-8 x 32, Plex @ $799.00
#51041 ER 5 1.5-8 x 32, 4A @ $799.00
#51042 ER 5 1.5-8 x 32, CirclePlex @ $829.00
#51043 ER 5 1.5-8 x 32, LE-TAC @ $829.00
#51050 ER 5 2-10 x 50, Plex @ $999.00
#51051 ER 5 2-10 x 50, 4A @ $999.00
#51052 ER 5 2-10 x 50, Std. Ballistic @ $1,029.00
#51053 ER 5 2-10 x 50, Mag. Ballistic @ $1,029.00
#51070 ER 5 3-15 x 56, Plex @ $1,299.00
#51071 ER 5 3-15 x 56, 4A @ $1,299.00
#51074 ER 5 3-15 x 56, Std. Ballistic @ $1,329.00
#51075 ER 5 3-15 x 56, Mag. Ballistic @ $1,329.00
#51060 ER 5 4-20 x 50, Plex @ $1,299.00
#51065 ER 5 4-20 x 50, Mag. Ballistic @ $1,329.00
#51090 ER 5 5-25 x 56, Plex @ $1,399.00
#51095 ER 5 5-25 x 56, Mag. Ballistic @ $1,429.00
They expect availability in the Spring

We worked a deal on the Leica Ultravid 10x42 HD - Green Binocular (Part#40088) which we are now able to offer at only $1799.99. If you want the best of the best in a 10x42 binocular than look no more. This is what you've been looking for.

There are two new Geovid Rangefinder Binoculars as well:
#40052 8x42 Geovid HD-R, type 402, featuring open hinge design @ $2,599.00
#40054 10x42 Geovid HD-R, type 403, featuring open hinge design @ $2,649.00
The New Geovid HD-R provides line of sight laser ranging from 10 to 2000+ yards and precise EHR calculations from 10 to 600 yards.
• For hunters that use a classical reticle in their riflescope, the Leica GEOVID HD-R 42 shows, in addition to the measured distance, the EHR calculation for approximating hold-over.
• For hunters using ballistic reticles the information provided allows for quick determination of the appropriate reticle mark.
• Hunters who use the calibrations on a custom turret or fast reticle-adjustment system can quickly dial to distance for on target performance.

Other Key Features:
- Quick handling, comfortable open ergonomic bridge design
- Actuation button on Right Hand Side
- Quiet, non-slip rubber armoring
- Bright, patented, advanced Perger Porro Prism system
- Lightweight, highly durable magnesium body
- Bright, easy to read display system with auto-brightness control

The new Leica Ultravid 10x42 HD-Plus binoculars have started to ship and are in stock.

Last year at SHOT we became a GDI Mount dealer, so my next meeting was with them.
If you are not familiar with GDI Mounts, please click on this link and read this article.
In short, I was able to get my hands on the most well crafted and precision made optic mounts in the industry at this year's SHOT Show in Las Vegas, lol. Hands down amazing quality that is steeped deeply in proven battlefield performance....not a surprise given the CEO/Founder's SEAL background. GDI mounts are truly second to none. Check out this link written about GDI by one of the industry leaders in Surefire's Combat Tactics magazine.

I finished my day visiting with Pentax Well these days Pentax/Ricoh.
They have finally revamped their entire binocular line. Discontinued everything and released all new. Everything is now fully multicoated for better colors and sharpness.
We shall see first reviews over the next few months and make an informed desision whether or not to bring these in.
As a SHOT Show special we are offering the now discontinued Pentax PCF WP 20x60 Binocular for only $149.99

Remembering from last years show how great it felt on my dried out throat I stopped on the way back to my room for an ice cream cone. I went with Vanilla Bean. Great decision.

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Day Two:

Same as last year I started day 2 with Minox. After all the great releases last year I was excited to see what 2015 would be like. I was not disappointed. I had the pleasure of checking out their new:
*ZP TAC Riflescopes: Now Available
*ZE TAC Riflescopes: Available late Spring/Early Summer
*A redesigned BF Series Binocular in 8x42 and 10x42: Available in the Spring
*MD60Z & MD80Z Spotting scopes: Available March
*DTC 400 Slim Trail Camera: Available now

The ZP TAC Riflescopes are made in Germany.
* 5x magnification (1-8x24, 3-25x50 & 5-25x56)
* Finely dimmable illuminated reticle at the first focal plane
*11 illumination settings

ZE TAC Riflescopes are also made in Germany.
* 5x magnification (1-5x24, 3-15x56 & 5-25x56) for maximum flexability and precision
* Special high-tech optical glass provides excellent image quality
* M* multi-coating
*Solid, and extremely shock resistant aluminum housing
* Precise elevation and windage settings and parallex compensation in the SF models

BF 8x42 & 10x42 Binoculars.
*Neutral color rendition
*Non-slip, sturdy aluminum body
*Nitrogen filling
*Waterproof down to 10 feet
*Twist out eyecups

MDZ Spotting Scopes:
*Brilliant image
*Rich in contrast, neutral color rendition
*12-40x zoom (MD 60Z), 20-60x zoom (MD80Z)
*Sturdy and impact resistant metal housing
*Waterproof down to 5 meters
*Both models are also available with a reticle which is a very nice addition to their spotting scope line-up.

DTC 400 Slim Trail Camera.

This is the flattest trail camera I have ever seen.
* Invisible IR camera flash with a range of 49'
* 9 megapixel resolution
* Fast 1 second shutter release
* HD video resolution
* 2" TFT color display

See next post for part 2 as this was too long for one post