Unexpected Surprises

March 22, 2022
Kevin "KJ" Jarnagin

I love taking off on a road trip with unexpected surprises waiting in the wings. Recently, the Gun Talk crew set off for the Shooting Sports Showcase, which was hosted by the Professional Outdoor Media Association and the National Association of Sporting Goods Wholesalers. The merry gang of Gun Talkers then set their sights on "The Gathering" hosted by Palmetto State Armory. While shooting, we noticed several guns that stood out.

Beretta 92X Performance

Before I get emails telling me the 92X Performance is not new, let me tell you this is new to me. I hadn't had a chance to run the 92X Performance and was pleasantly surprised about the weight and feel of the pistol. I enjoy a good 92, but the 92X was well balanced and accurate, even for a non-pistol guy like me. https://www.beretta.com/en/92x-performance/ 

Trailblazer Firearms “The Pivot”

The Pivot from Trailblazer Firearms was the craziest/wildest firearm of the trip. Basically, the upper pivots around at the press of a button, making it a slim, compact 9mm. I see this as a gun that can be stowed in vehicles, backpacks, or in tight places around the house. It accepts GLOCK pattern magazines and is equipped with a collapsible buttstock. https://trailblazerfirearms.com/ 

Lead Star Arms LWR

Under 5 POUNDS! Typically, you expect a little weight when someone hands over an AR-15 rifle. The Lead Star Lightweight Rifle (LWR) practically disappeared when I took hold. It is lightweight, but I bet it kicks like a mule. This wasn't the case either. The LWR is highly skeletonized but maintains its functionality and purpose. If you have a couple grand lying around the house, this one is worth looking at. Plus, it is offered in some flashy colors if that is your jam. https://www.leadstararms.com/prime-lwr-ar-15-lightweight-rifle-red/ 

Canik SFX Rival

I’m seeing a pattern while I’m listing these guns out. Apparently, I like flashy guns. The Canik SFX Rival is one of those that is flashy and runs like a scalded dog. Many features of this gun can be found on high-performance, custom guns. All the base features make the SFX Rival a great competition gun for newcomers to the competitive scene. https://www.canikarms.com/en/products_detail/sfx-rival 

Marlin 1895SBL

It goes without saying that we are all thrilled Marlin is back. The Model 1895 SBL is a breath of fresh air, knowing the brand is in such goods hands. Marlin isn't sitting idle or wasting time cranking out the same old guns. The 45-70 is highlighted by a beautiful gray laminate stock, nickel-plated bolt, refined stock, and threaded barrel. I'd like to shout out to the brilliant mind that implemented the threaded barrel. As older age sets in, I've become less of a fan of recoil. https://www.marlinfirearms.com/s/model_1895sbl/ 

Savior Equipment Mobile Firearm Rack

Savior Equipment needs to fire the person responsible for branding. All three Gun Talk members stopped in our tracks to admire the lightweight, portable firearm rack. However, there were zero brand logos whatsoever. It took some digging, but I found the Mobile Firearm rack. It'll only set you back $86 bones. That's worth the price for something handy on and off the range. I just ordered three. https://amzn.to/3qktyve 

There were several other standouts, and, to be honest, they aren't listed here because I was having so much fun shooting them, I forgot to get pics. I'll try harder next trip out. ~ KJ


Kevin Jarnagin (KJ) hails from Oklahoma but quickly established Louisiana roots after joining the Gun Talk team. KJ grew up as a big game hunter and often finds himself in a different venture often. Whether it’s making his way to British Columbia for elk or training with pistols, KJ always seems to find a gun in his hands and adventure on his mind.

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