I'm sitting here relaxing in front of the fire and having a beer now that I'm all packed and just about ready to leave tomorrow for the 2012 SHOT Show. As I sit here thinking about the trip and the show and I thought it would be a neat idea to take a quick look back at some old shows.
First up, for those who live in fear of Gareth's bow or Ben's button, they both pale in comparison to Bob's .50 of Banishment!
If you can stand up to that you must have a heck of a set, but I'll bet it's nothing compared to this SAK!
That was the first year I'd ever met the Cat Man face to face, although he only had eyes for Wenger's New Ranger models with pocket clips!
Speaking of pocket clips, this was the year we first saw the Skeletool, and what at the time was the Freestyle, a very different model than what we see today!
Not to mention the introduction of SOG's piano key locks.
Bob was so thrilled he joined a chorus line!
That was all from the first SHOT I went to- this being my fifth means we have a lot of photos to go through, so we'll skip ahead to the next show, this time in Orlando with Mikey.
That was the year of the Damascus Wave:
And the American Flag Micra:
Victorinox released the biometric model:
I got a little bit eaten on a side trip to Gatorland where we met Johnny, aka Doggy Guru, aka Latino Heat, aka Navajero. Johnny had a problem committing to a name, but since he wrestled gators for a living, no one argued with him!
I also got some time to hang out and talk with Tom Stokes, designer for CRKT, I helped out with a problem they had with the Flux (at the time I couldn't talk about it) and as a thank you Tom gave me a Fulcrum Flame knife.
Oh yeah, and Mikey got a little bit "bugged!"
Then he got a little bit snakey!
Oh yeah, and the GUNS! How could I forget the guns?
The next year we were back in Vegas and Bob made sure to find some stellar talent!
In our travels we managed to find a few other interesting people like Ken and Matt Griffey, the Bear and Son in Bear & Son Cutlery:
Glenn Klecker, another designer at CRKT, and also the guy responsible for the Skeletool design:
J. Bruce Voyles from Knives Illustrated:
Les DeAsis, CEO of Benchmade:
Peter Hug, CEO of Wenger SA:
Spencer Frazer from SOG:
Michael D Janich, martial blade master and knife dsigner:
And we had a meeting of the Fat Long Haired Canadian Knife People:
Last year was in Las Vegas again, and I met up with Tom Stokes outside of the show this time to go and fire some guns!
I don't want to brag, but I think I know where SEAL Team 6 got the idea from!
Tom got better guns to play with than I did!
Even at Bass River he managed to find some fun guns!
At the show, Benchmade showed me the new 916 Triage:
And CRKT bucked tradition by making a really neat new knife that you can assemble yourself, with your kids!
I was also the first one to break the news about the new Leatherman models after having snuck onto the show floor the day before it opened!
Gerber announced the Balance, which has yet to materialize:
And the Fit, which has largely gone under the radar, despite being a neat tool.
And the Crucal FAST, which quickly became part of my EDC rotation.
So, what's in store for this year? I don't know, but there are a few things we'll be looking for- things like Leatherman's Rebar, news about Gerber's Balance, a rumored new tool from CRKT that they are quite confident in and the Victorinox 1tb drive.
One thing for sure, we'll have all kinds of pictures and details and maybe a few funny stories to share!