A little off the beaten path, we saw two pistols from Korth: one a roller-locked M1911 variant, and the other a short 9mm revolver. A high-end German gunmaker best known for its beautifully-crafted revolvers, which tend to start around $6,000 and go up to the price of a decent home or a very, very nice car, the last couple years it has begun expanding more into the mainstream.
The M1911, which comes in .45 ACP, incorporates the roller-lock technology usually associated with HK-pattern rifles and the more obscure but solidly build CZ52 pistol. Technically a form of delayed blockback, the roller lock is typically quite strong, and its inclusion on the M1911 provides an interesting mechanical variation for those to whom most M1911’s have started to look the same.
The Sky Marshal 9mm was designed at the request of a law enforcement agency who wanted a 9mm revolver that did not require moon clips. Accordingly, the short, 9mm length cylinder of the Sky Marshal has a unique extractor system that can extract the rimless 9mm cartridges without the customary clips. While this does eliminate the all-at-once reloading of the moon-clip revolver, it may fill a need for some users.
Glock continued its trademark variation of a proven theme with the introduction of the optics-ready MOS longslide models in 9mm, .40, 10m auto and .45. Equipped with standard fixed sights, the Modular Optic System consists of an interchangeable plate system designed to serve as a mounting point for a broad range of current optics including the popular Trijicon RMR and others. Numbered from 00 to 04, the 00 plate is the cover plate, and each of the other numbered plates is designed to accept a specific optic. As the slide-mounted optic trend (which was led by the CORE pistols from Smith & Wesson), grows in popularity, it will be interesting to see if Glock incorporates this feature into its more traditional duty-sized pistols such as the G17 and G22 instead of the competition and tactically-oriented G34, G35 G41, and the newly-introduced 10mm G40.
Ruger’s line expansion includes a three-inch version of the well-received LCR polymer-framed revolvers (look for a full review in these pages), as well as the endlessly popular LCP .380 with an improved trigger system. By altering the travel and using a lightweight alloy trigger, the modifications greatly improve the feel of the LCP’s trigger pull.
A slightly higher cost option, it makes the pistol surprisingly easy to shoot well. Individual results may vary, but we were able to get a majority of the rounds in the magazines onto a steel human silhouette target at 100 yards. The Ruger 22/45 Lite also has some minor aesthetic variations this year.
Built using the proven Standard/MkI-III action, the 22/45 substitutes a grip angle that corresponds more to the Government Model .45 for those who are less comfortable with the raked-back, Luger-like grip angle of the MkIII. Doubtless a response to the efforts of Tactical Solutions, a well-known, top-notch manufacturer of lightweight receivers for the Ruger .22 pistol and other rimfires, the Lite has an alloy receiver with a rifled steel liner. A series of gill-like lightening slots run down the side of the receiver, exposing the barrel liner inside, which gives the gun a sleek, racy look.
Stay tuned for continuing handgun coverage at SHOT Show 2015.