Sunday, 17 October 2010

I have seen the future... least, I've seen the products that are going to get shooters excited in the near future - and there's some seriously good stuff coming our way.

I've been at the Tackle & Guns Show at Stoneleigh in Warwickshire, where the gun trade shows off its wares to gun shops and retailers. The stuff on show here will be in the shops soon - some of it in time for Christmas.

I'm not generally one to get all hot under the collar about some shiny new bit of kit. I'm more likely to be enthused by some old trick with a hazel stick and a piece of string.

But how could you not be excited about a new hand-held thermal imager from Thomas Jacks? This is the stuff of science fiction and SAS novels - but now an estate with £5,000 to spend can have a gadget which will show up a warm body on a cold hill (fox, poacher, you name it), without any need for lights or lasers. Indeed, if you can scrape together a cool £15,000 you can have a super-duper version which until recently would have been the envy of our special forces (nowadays they have even better stuff - we'll have to wait a bit longer for that!).

And that's not all. Deben were showing a range of new generation lamping gear, based on LED technology. Combined with their superb lithium ion batteries, these lamps really are going to change night-time rabbiting and foxing for good.

Then there's the brilliant Nitewatch range of watches, and their clever glow rings. Plus Fjallraven will be offering a range of hunting clothing in the UK. I'm quite a fan of their gear, even though it's 'old' technology (polyester/cotton and wax, rather than some fancy modern fabric). Fact is, it's hardwearing, it works, and it's comfortable in all kinds of situations.

Other highlights? Well, there's a few things I'm not allowed to mention, but I can tell you about this clever Blaser F3 try-gun, which Rupert Haynes was showing on the Open Season stand. It's the modern version of the old try-gun you might have seen at a shooting school - but this one has all the measurements built-in - so once your instructor has got the fit right, you can just read off the measurements; no need to get the measuring sticks out. A brilliant bit of kit which will make gun-fitting quicker, easier and more accurate.

No comments: