Day 2 at IWA OutdoorClassics 2024: trends, lots of new products and hands-on activities at the firearms fair

Only at Smith & Wesson in Hall 1 were there no firearms to be seen, just empty hooks on the exhibition walls – apparently the IWA guns were not cleared by German customs in time. This hasn't happened for years, but is part of the 50-year history of the IWA, as is the short history review with historical photos and diagrams of the number of visitors and exhibitors. However, the action continues in various other areas: in Hall 2 in the airsoft firing lines, which are protected by Plexiglas and therefore attractive for spectators; binoculars and laser rangefinders, riflescopes and thermal technology can be tested in the Optics Testing Area in Hall 4; and knives in the Blade Demo Area in Hall 5. In between, there will be presentations by experts on numerous industry topics or information chats at the booths of the association. It's a real pleasure to return to the product worlds afterwards. We help you with our appetisers, in text and videos.

IWA 2024: Springfield Armory Echelon – the full-size pistol with the innovative "Central Operating Group"

Springfield Echelon
The Springfield Echelon is fully ambidextrous and features a fully self-contained and serialized Central Operating Group that can be swapped between different grip modules.

The Springfield Echelon polymer pistol is designed for both professional use and sport shooting. Like other Springfield Armory models, it is manufactured by HS Produkt in Croatia, which is now part of the U.S. group. We already introduced the gun. The centrepiece of the fully ambidextrous pistol is the patent-pending Central Operating Group. Using state-of-the-art manufacturing techniques, this fully self-contained and serialized, mass-produced stainless steel group can be swapped between different grip modules in a matter of seconds. It features a modular system in which the trigger group is the operational centerpiece of the gun, while the grip modules can be easily interchanged. There is also a cut on the slide that allows the direct mounting of thirty different models of mini reflex optics. The grip has an adaptive, non-slip texture that ensures a secure hold under all circumstances. The magazine release and slide stop are located on both sides of the frame. The trigger, which has a particularly positive reset, is a focal point of the pistol. The standard magazine holds 17 rounds, which can be increased to 20 in the extended version. The cold-hammer forged barrel is 4.5 inches long in the standard version, or 5.28 inches in the version with a threaded barrel for suppressor mounting.

IWA 2024: muzzle-loading with Pedersoli's Shooting Academy

At the Pedersoli's Shooting Academy beginners can approach muzzle-loading shooting under the guidance of very experienced instructors.

One of the first visits to IWA 2024 as usual was to the Davide Pedersoli booth, where we had a chat with Stefano Pedersoli, who reminded us how the World Muzzle-Loading Shooting Championships are imminent. The competition will take place in Valeggio sul Mincio near Brescia, Italy, from August 25 to 31, 2024, and will be an opportunity to see the best shooters and the best guns or muzzle-loaders in action. 

Stefano then reminded us of the important role of the Pedersoli's Shooting Academy in training new muzzle-loading shooters. In fact, the Academy provides a series of practical courses where beginners can approach the elegance of shooting with black-powder firerams under the guidance of very experienced instructors, in complete safety. Loading stages, maintenance and safety are some of the most important topics covered during the course, first with classroom explanations, then moving on to practice on the firing lines. Pedersoli's Shooting Academy relies on shooting ranges scattered throughout Italy.

To learn more about this important initiative you can visit the Pedersoli's Shooting Academy website page.

Videos from IWA 2024: new long guns from Beretta – BRX1 Wild Boar Edition and the super-light Ultraleggero over-and-under shotgun in 20/76

New long guns from Beretta were on show at the Manfred Alberts GmbH booth at this year's IWA. A new driven hunt variant of the well-known Beretta BRX1 straight-pull bolt-action rifle kicked things off. It goes by the name Wild Boar Edition and comes with an eye-catching polymer stock in signal orange. It also features fast acquisition sights and a muzzle thread. It is available in three calibers suitable for driven hunts: .308 Winchester, .30-06 Springfield and .300 Winchester Magnum. It is only available in short barrel lengths: 510 millimeters in the first two calibers and 570 millimeters in .300 Win. Mag. The price of the new BRX1 Wild Boar Edition is 1,850 euros (RRP).

Beretta also has something new in the shotgun sector: the Ultraleggero over-and-under shotgun in 20 gauge with 76 mm chamber, which weighs just 2.35 kilograms and is designed specifically for the needs of "upland walkers". In other words,  hunters who spend a lot of time walking (with their dog) and hunting small game, but only fire a few shots per day. With this type of hunting in particular, the hunter quickly notices every gram. And this is where the super-light Ultraleggero comes to the rescue. However, there are also disadvantages: it is clear that this gun is not for hunting crows or ducks. Even extensive visits to the shooting range are not the core discipline of this gun. The new Ultraleggero in 20/76 is therefore a true specialist that also has a particularly elegant appearance. Nevertheless, the shotgun naturally has all the important features such as steel shot proofing and steel receiver. The shotgun comes at an RRP of  €2,950. In addition to the standard stock, a ladies' stock is also available as an option. The Beretta Ultraleggero in 20/76 is available immediately. More information can be found on the Beretta website.

IWA 2024: F.A.I.R. SLX 600 De Luxe over-and-under shotgun

With a deep black blued receiver, gold-inlaid subjects and a decidedly elegant design, the F.A.I.R SLX 600 De Luxe over-and-under is a solid hunting shotgun available in all gauges and a silver version too.

The SLX 600 De Luxe line of over-and-under shotguns is nothing new in F.A.I.R. production. However, on display at Iwa 2023 we noted the special Black version with a deep black blued receiver and gold-inlaid, deep laser-engraved subjects that highlight the elegant design of a gun that makes above all its ruggedness a strong point. Machined from solid steel billets, the receiver of the SLX 600 De Luxe over-and-under is also available in a silver-colored version, again with gold inlaid engraving on the receiver sides and bottom. There are five well-crafted subjects in total, two pheasants in flight on the left side, two partridges on the right side, and a woodcock on the receiver bottom. The shotgun is made in all major gauges, from the largest 12-gauge to the smallest .410 bore, with scaled receivers – except for the .410 bore, which uses the 28-gauge receiver.

The 76-mm magnum chambered barrels are available in the different lengths of 68, 71 and 76 cm to cope with different types of hunting and are fitted with a set of internal and interchangeable steel shot chokes designed for use even with lead-free pellets made from alternative alloys. The trigger is single selective with a wide and well-rounded trigger guard, while case ejectors are automatic. The oil-finished European walnut wood stock fearures a wide pistol grip, comfortable in swinging; forend is the classic Schabel style. The overall weight of the over-and-under given its construction characteristics and the materials used remains in the standard of about 3 kg for the 12-gauge, dropping to 2.8 kg for the smaller gauges. A classic and pleasingly designed gun with which to tackle days of hunting both from the hide and when stalking.

Video from IWA 2024: GPO expands its catalog with the new, affordable Passion SD line of binoculars for beginners

German Precision Optics is already represented in over 60 countries. Now the German company is launching the new Passion SD binoculars series with impressive optical performance at extremely attractive prices. The first six models have been presented in Nuremberg (and in the video):

  • The Passion SD with 26-mm lens in the 8x26 and 10x26 versions is an ultra-compact companion for the rucksack and is no burden on the budget at €299 (RRP).
  • With a larger objective lens diameter, the Passion SD 8x34 and 10x34 models belong to the compact class, whereby even those with little experience should have a wobble-free view with the 8x magnification. Both models have an RRP of 329 euros.
  • The Passion SD 8x42 and 10x42 binoculars are all-rounders for all light conditions right into twilight thanks to the largest objective lenses in the model range. The recommended retail price is just 349 euros.

All Passion SD binoculars should be available from specialist retailers from May. Further information can be found on the GPO website.

Video from IWA 2024: Pulsar shows the Duo NXP50 thermal binoculars and the LRF XP35 thermal binoculars with the widest field of view in the Merger series

At the Pulsar stand, Liudas Abisala is showing two devices with the latest technology: the Pulsar DUO NXP50 multispectral binoculars combine thermal imaging and night vision technology in a single device, whereby both views can also be combined using picture-in-picture technology. This allows high-resolution images to be captured in a wide range of wavelengths, including visible light, near infrared and long-wave infrared - AKA as thermal Imaging. This feature makes it an extremely flexible tool in all lighting and weather conditions, especially as the 50 mm lenses guarantees good image quality. An infrared illuminator with three-stage adjustment completes the equipment. Price: 3,900 euros (MSRP), information can be found on the Pulsar website.

The smaller Pulsar LRF XP35 thermal imaging binoculars with 35-mm lens are ideal as stalking binoculars and, like the Duo, also use the highly sensitive XP thermal imaging sensor with 640x480 pixel resolution and less than 25 mK NETD. It detects minimal temperature differences when observing in low contrast situations as well as in rain or fog. This gives the LRF XP35 the widest field of view of the entire Merger series. The MSRP has been set at 5,600 euros. Again, the Pulsar website provides all the specs.

IWA 2024: Burris Eliminator 6 high-tech riflescope – all calculations are automatic, "just" pull the trigger!

IWA 2024: The Burris 4-20x52 Eliminator 6 (Laserscope) riflescope.

The latest riflescope from Burris, the U.S. optics specialist, was presented with high expectations. The Burris 4-20x52 Eliminator 6 (Laserscope) model is designed to "eliminate" all preparatory work for a shot when hunting. It essentially reduces the shooter's required actions to simply pulling the trigger. By pressing a button, this riflescope displays the target distance and immediately calculates the exact aiming point and the wind conditions directly within the field of view.

The technical implementation is achieved by means of precise laser measurement, which electronically activates the corresponding aiming points in the crosshairs. This innovative reticle, the X177 Eliminator reticle, which can be dimmed either automatically or manually in nine settings, is located in the second focal plane of the 34-mm tube. The device has an adjustment range of 40 MOA both in elevation and windage. The parallax adjustment, which is possible from a distance of 25 yards, is located on the left-hand side. With a simple push of a button, the Eliminator 6 provides an instant and precise distance measurement of up to ,2000+ yards for reflective objects and up to 1,400 yards for game. For ballistic calculations, the Eliminator 6 uses data previously uploaded by the user via the BurrisConnect app, taking into account information on range, environment, weather and ballistic characteristics. This enables the Eliminator 6 to use a total of 177 aiming points with an accuracy of 1/5 MOA, thus ensuring a reliable match between the aiming point and the hit point.

Video from IWA 2024: Nextorch TA31 and accessories for the TA30 – All the latest innovations in torches and flashlights

As usual from previous trade fairs, lighting and equipment specialist Nextorch has a whole range of new products on show. The relatively large TA31 torch is celebrating its premiere. It comes with an operating concept derived from the already familiar TA20 and TA30C MAX models: it therefore comes with the rotating dial and dual-stage tactical tail switch from the TA30C MAX. As already known from the manufacturer's searchlights, the TA31 also has a sensor that automatically dims when objects are at close range. This is also necessary, as the lamp has an output of 10,000 lumens.

Also new from Nextorch are various accessories for the TA30C. There are three changeover switches for the flashlight. An operator switch has an indoor function with 300 instead of 1600 lumens. When the button is pressed, the torch switches to variable strobe mode. Another option is now the KISS switch ("Keep it simple and safe"). This has a lock function and is characterised in particular by its simple operation: press the switch, the torch lights up. Nothing more. This is designed to prevent operating errors, especially in stressful situations. As the third switch in the group, Nextorch now also offers one with a wired remote control. Also new is a revised version of the V31 holder, which now has a more compact attachment. You can find all the information about the new Nextorch products in our detailed video above. And of course on the torch manufacturer's website.

Video from IWA 2024: Baschieri & Pellagri new One Steel hunting cartridges in five gauges

Baschieri & Pellagri expands their offer with a new range of steel loadings in 12-gauge and 20-gauge to offer hunters more and more useful and high-performance alternatives in different environmental situations. At IWA 2024, Alessandro Goggi, a Baschieri research and development technician, tells us about the five One Steel cartridges with payloads starting from 24 and 28 grams that can be used with any type of shotgun, up to 34-gram HP and 35-gram magnum loads that can be used with steel proofed guns. Research focused mainly on velocity and performance consistency of these cartridges, which thanks to their features and shot pellet number lend themselves to various types of hunting, from small migratory to medium-sized sedentary game such as pheasant or hare.

Presenting themselves with an innovative and attractive packaging on which the main game species are showed, the cartridges in the One steel line include for 12-gauge two standard 28- and 30-gram loadings with 70-mm cartridge shells and cup wads, available in shot numbers 9.5- 8.5- 7- 6- 5. The remarkable velocities recorded on the test bench are 430 and 415 m/s, respectively. Also for 12 gauge, the range includes a 34-gram HP loading and a 35-gram Magnum HP loading. Also featuring cup  wads, the two cartridges will be available with shot numbers 8.5- 7- 6- 5- 4 in the HP version, and shot numbers 7- 6- 5- 4 in the magnum HP version with velocities of 410 and 430 m/s.

For 20 gauge enthusiasts, the loading included in the One Steel line is a 24-gram cartridge featuring a 67-mm shell with cup wad and shot numbers 9.5- 8.5- 7- 6- 5 and a velocity reaching 400 m/s. The entire One Steel range comes in packs of 25 cartridges.

IWA OutdoorClassics will take place from February 19 to March 3, 2024, in Nuremberg, Germany.

Here you can find the digital IWA trade fair guide in PDF format

IWA website with all information for visitors, exhibitors and the trade press

ACCESS FOR TRADE PUBLIC ONLY: all information on how to obtain tickets and what access restrictions apply

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