New Review: May 2004
by Chris Choat


Building upon the Panther Long Range 308’s reputation as one of the most accurate.30caliber semiautomatic rifles in the world, DPMS Panther Arms unveils two new models of the LR-308, the LR-308B and the LR-308T. Both models utilize the standard LR-308’s heavy-walled extruded upper receiver and the robust machined aluminum lower. Both receivers are hard coat anodized per mil spec and Teflon coated black. The newest .308 rifles, however, define themselves by their barrel and lower overall weights. The LR-308B, with its shorter and lighter design, measures 37.6 inches long and weighs 9.7 pounds. It features an 18-inch 6-groove chrome-moly bull barrel with a right-hand twist of one turn in 10 inches. The 7.25-inch fluted, aluminum, free-float handguards, along with its compact design, provide a true tactical rifle envelope. These two crucial features, along with the original LR-308’s reputation for accuracy and reliability, make this rifle a rifle that appeals to all applications. Not to be overlooked, the tactical LR-308T appeals particularly to law enforcement personnel as well as hunters. A mere 8.9 pounds, and 37.6 inches in length makes this rifle easier to handle and much more portable. The 7.25-inch fluted, aluminum, free float handguards and a shortened, lightweight, six-groove, 16-inch chrome-moly barrel with a right-hand twist of one turn in 10 inches brings .308 rifle design to a whole new level. DPMS is an industry leader in providing quality AR-style rifles, components and accessories. No other company offers more styles or configurations of AR rifles. DPMS also provides choices for shooters ranging from high-power to small-bore by offering several rifles chambered in .22LR, 5.56x45mm, 7.62x39, .308 Winchester and .300 Remington Short Action Ultra Mag. For more information please contact DPMS, Inc. Dept. SAR, 3312 12th Street S.E., St. Cloud, MN 56304; phone: 1-320-258-4448; fax: 1-320-258-4449.


Ironwood Designs is a military stock manufacturer based in San Jose, CA. They have recently introduced a line of stocks for the Ruger 10/22 rifle, which recently celebrated its 40th anniversary. The new stocks are bullpup designs and are made from various exotic woods with a machined aluminum chassis. One model is the SG 2000, which is based on the Walther WA 2000 tactical rifle. It is available in either Black Walnut or Black Pakkawood. The latter makes a very striking package when combined with a stainless 10/22. Another interesting model is the 10/22 AUG, which makes the Ruger rifle, look like a Steyr AUG. It also features a forward folding grip and a machined scope mount. The manufacturer tells me that another model that is based on the FN P-90 is also in the works. One great thing about these bullpups is that if you have a finely tuned trigger on your 10/22 that feel is carried over to these new models. That was always the shortcoming of bullpup conversions in the past. Several options are available with different models. They also manufacture AK and FAL reproduction stock sets. For more information on these innovative products please contact Ironwood Designs, Dept. SAR, 872 Ironwood Drive, San Jose, CA 95125; phone: 1-408- 269-7102; Their website address is: www.ironwooddesigns.com.


Sterling, VA. (October 1, 2003) Heckler & Koch, Inc. has been awarded a contract with three one-year options to supply the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) with .40 caliber handguns for the Federal Flight Deck Officer Program. The program is designed to train commercial airline pilots who volunteer to serve as federal law enforcement officers responsible for defending the cockpit against terrorist attacks. The HK USP40 Compact LEM (Law Enforcement Modification) is already in use by numerous federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies. “The selection of the HK USP40 Compact LEM by the TSA is yet another step in establishing this model as the premier handgun among law enforcement,” said HK Law Enforcement Sales Manager Wayne Weber. “The HK LEM system is taking the US Law Enforcement community by storm, by combining a truly innovative trigger system with outstanding reliability, accuracy, safety, and ease of handling.” Under the terms of the contract, the maximum value of the base period is $480,038, with maximum contract value available up to $3.3 million, if all three, one-year options are exercised. This procurement is part of the TSA’s Federal Flight Deck Officer Program, a component of the Arming Pilots Against Terrorism Act enacted by Congress in 2002. The program allows pilots of American air carriers to volunteer for special firearms training and become certified federal law enforcement officers. After completing their federal certification, pilots would be authorized to use a handgun to defend their cockpits from hijackers and other attackers. “We are very pleased that the Transportation Security Administration selected the Heckler & Koch USP40 Compact LEM for the Federal Flight Deck Officer Program,” said HK Vice President Peter Simon. “This contract award further validates the company’s recent announcement to build a manufacturing plant in the United States. We particularly appreciate the efforts of Georgia’s congressional delegation; Senator Chambliss’ and Congressman Collins’ tireless efforts played a major role in Heckler & Koch’s decision to locate its plant in Columbus, Georgia.” Heckler & Koch announced in August that it plans to build a manufacturing facility in Columbus, Georgia, with the TSA handguns among the first products made. A groundbreaking ceremony for this facility is planned for October 14, 2004 on-site. Heckler & Koch, Inc. of Sterling, Virginia is the U.S. affiliate of Heckler & Koch, GmbH of Oberndorf, Germany. Heckler & Koch, a leader in the design and manufacturing of technologically advanced firearms for defense and law enforcement. It is the firm behind some of the most well known firearms of the last fifty years including the G3 rifle, MP5 submachine gun, USP pistol, and newer models such as the MP7 Personal Defense Weapon, the UMP submachine gun, and the G36 weapon system. For more information please contact Heckler & Koch, Inc., Dept. SAR, 21480 Pacific Boulevard, Sterling, VA 20166; phone: 1-703-450-1900; fax: 1-703-450-8160.


Smith & Wesson has just introduced its popular 642 J-Frame now with Crimson Trace Lasergrips. The compact hammerless, compact revolver, frequently used by law enforcement will feature Crimson Trace’s Lasergrips already installed right from the factory. This rubber wrap-around grip features an integrated laser aiming system and sports the legendary Smith & Wesson medallion. “The Crimson Trace laser is a serious tool, proven to increase hit ratios during real police shootings where speed and accuracy determine life and death,” said Adam Wollander, vice president of marketing for Crimson Trace. “And if a J-frame is carried for personal defense or backup, every shot is critical.” “The laser equipped J-frame extends Smith & Wesson’s tradition of bringing technological innovation to the firearms marketplace,” said Roy Cuny, president and CEO of Smith & Wesson Corp. “Crimson Trace Lasergrips add precision aiming capability to our compact revolver without adding weight or bulk.” Lasergrips enhance the shooter’s performance with any handgun, but none more than the J-frame. With low-light and movement, the rule in real-life armed encounters, missed shots are all too frequent. Missed shots mean increased potential for collateral damage claims and, most importantly, failure to stop the threat. The Smith & Wesson J-frame is capable of extraordinary accuracy that can be used to its full potential by the application of Crimson Trace Lasergrips. This new Smith & Wesson — Crimson Trace package offers a great self-defense combo and a terrific value of $696. The production of these special pistols is limited and will be available through licensed firearms retailers by mid-December. Lasergrips with the S&W medallion will be available only on this revolver. Customers are encouraged to visit their local federally licensed firearms retailer as previous innovations from Smith & Wesson sold out quickly. Lasergrips are recommended as an essential accessory by some of the world’s top firearms trainers. Crimson Trace’s laser-aiming devices are used around the world by law enforcement agencies and military, as well as, responsible armed citizens. For more information or to find a stocking dealer near you, contact S&W’s customer service line at 1-800-442-2406 or you can visit them at www.crimsontrace.com. To find the location of the nearest Smith & Wesson stocking dealer call 1-800-331-0852 or visit www.smith-wesson.com. For information on Lasergrips for other firearms please contact Crimson Trace, Dept. SAR, 8089 Southwest Cirrus Drive, Beaverton, OR 97008; fax: (503)627-0166.

This article first appeared in Small Arms Review V7N8 (May 2004)
and was posted online on August 23, 2013


Comments have not been generated for this article.