American Rifleman - November 2010 - (Page 8)

CORRESPONDENCE EDITOR’S LETTER espite the huge surge in popularity and accompanying demand for semi-automatic .380 ACP pistols, there are those old-school handgunners for whom the Smith & Wesson J-frame is the personal-protection gun of choice, be it with an internal hammer, as with the Centennial, or with an external, shrouded one as on the “Bodyguard.” Today, demand still exceeds supply. That’s because J-frames are still built the old-fashioned way. Back in the 1950s (really the lockwork dates back to the 1890s), the parts were not designed with modern high-speed manufacturing in mind. Today, assembling a J-frame takes highly skilled craftsmen, and each gun goes to a tter for nal assembly. At the gun shop, you have to pay for that old-school design and handwork, and today a Model 442 in blue runs $640, while a 638CT with a factory-installed Crimson Trace Lasergrip runs $901. Just as S&W carried over the name of its most enduring revolver design, the Military & Police, to modern polymer-frame pistols, and semi-automatic AR-based ri es (and now some J-frames, too), it has christened its newest pistols—a polymer-frame .380 ACP and a polymer-frame .38 Spl. +P—with another great name from Smith’s history: the aforementioned Bodyguard. Although late to the .380 pistol market (let’s not discuss the ill-advised SW380 of the ’90s), and being a step behind Ruger with a polymer-frame revolver, the new Bodyguards do mark a milestone in rearm design. The BG 380 comes with a laser sight built into the frame design and installed at the factory by S&W employees on the oor of the Spring eld, Mass., plant (for more on the Bodyguards, turn to Field Editor Wiley Clapp’s story beginning on p. 52). These two new guns were designed with manufacturing ef ciency and affordability in mind: the BG 38 is priced at $625 while the BG 380 is D $525. That’s with their Insight Technology lasers. The laser-sighted handgun entered popular culture with the 1983 lm “The Terminator.” As described by Arnold Schwarzenegger’s character, it was the “.45 Longslide laser sighting.” It was a Laser Products (which became SureFire) device larger than the slide of the .45 ACP AMT Longslide Hardballer it topped—and, according to screenwriter John Fasano, that ri escope-sized unit didn’t even include the battery, which rode in the actor’s pocket. Both lasers and their power sources have miniaturized, and devices such as the Crimson Trace Lasergrip and the LaserMax guide rod unit are unobtrusive, don’t add weight, don’t materially change the handling characteristics of the rearm and allow the use of standard holsters. With the BG 38, S&W attaches the laser module to the upper right rear of the frame. More signi cantly, the laser and its power supply are built directly into the lower front frame of the BG 380. At the new Bodyguards’ debut in January, one overly enthusiastic— yet not necessarily intellectually gifted—gunwriter questioned the need for iron sights. A polite S&W representative took the query under advisement, but I couldn’t help myself. I replied, “Plan B. Batteries die, sights don’t.” Lasers have come a long way, and I am a convert to their effectiveness. They can be handy in aiding shot placement, and battery life now is measured in hours, not minutes, but at times you still need a backup plan. Sincerely, 8 NOVEMBER 2010 WWW.AMERICANRIFLEMAN.ORG http://www.GalcoGunleather.com http://www.GalcoGunleather.com http://WWW.AMERICANRIFLEMAN.ORG

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of American Rifleman - November 2010

American Rifleman - November 2010
Contents
Editor’s Letter
Armed Citizen
Standing Guard
President’s Column
Readers Write
News, Notes and Ephemera
Questions & Answers
Loading Bench
Expanding Bullets: Really Work
Laser On Board: The New Bodyguards
Election 2010: Had Enough? Vote Freedom First!
Political Report
Election 2010: Races To Watch
The Model 94 Rides Again
Spanish Broomhandles
Blaser: The Evolution Of German Hunting Rifles
Arms Of The “Chosin Few”
Walter R. Walsh: An Amazing Life
Dope Bag: Data & Comment
ILA Report
Regional Report/Member Info & Benefits
Programs & Services
I Have This Old Gun

American Rifleman - November 2010

https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_202008
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_202007
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_202005
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_202004
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_202003
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_202002
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_202001
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201912
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201911
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201909
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201908
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201907
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201906
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201905
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201904
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201903
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201902
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201901
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201812
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201811
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201810
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201809
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201808
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201807
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201806
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201805
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201804
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201803
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201802
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201801
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201712
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201711
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201710
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201709
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201707
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201706
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201705
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201704
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201703
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201702
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201701
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201612
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201611
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201610
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201609
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201608r
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201607
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201606
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201605
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201604
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201603
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201602
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201601
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201512
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201511
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201510
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201509
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201508
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201507
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201505
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201504
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201503
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201502
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201501
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201412
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201411
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201410
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201409
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201408
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201407
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201406
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201405
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201404
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201403
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201402
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201401
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201312
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201311
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201310
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201309
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201308
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201307
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201306
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201305
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201303
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201302
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201301
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201212
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201211
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201210
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201209
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201208
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201207
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201206
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201205
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201204
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201203
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201202
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201201
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201111
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201110
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201109
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201108
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201107
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201106
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201105
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201104
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201103
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201101
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201009
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201008
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201007
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201006
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201005_v2
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201004
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201003
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201002
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_201001
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_200912
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_200911
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_200910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_200909
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_200908
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nra/ar_200907
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com