The latest arrival from Rizzini is a clever little combination package, which provides an ideal combination of versatility and flexibility. The package is the Rizzini RB EM in 20 bore with 30” multichoke barrels, but the gun is also supplied with a fitted set of 30” 28 bore barrels (also with multichokes). As the 28 bore barrels are fitted to the 20 bore action, this gives the gun a bit of extra weight which makes it super-comfortable to shoot with those slightly punchier 28 gauge cartridges which people like to use for tall birds. If using standard 28 bore loads, the gun has almost no recoil! Arguably the cleverest thing about this great little combo is the new compact case, which takes up almost no space at all and does not look like a gun case, so does not attract any suspicious looks when you are travelling with it. RRP £4,050 – a steal!
Peltor has over 50 years’ experience in producing communication and protection products. As we all know, hearing protection is really important when shooting. But do we really know why and the science behind it? And with so many products on the market which are the most suitable for your customers? Firstly, what is harmful sound? When sound levels exceed 85dB, extended exposure becomes harmful to our ears. Exposure to consider when shooting. We also need to think about how ear muffs can affect our gun mount and other external noise that we must be able to hear (such as safety whistles or shooting instructions). Peltor by 3M produces a wide range of products suitable for all shooting applications. We begin with standard passive ear muffs from the Bullseye range. Passive ear muffs are simple soundblocking muffs that reduce the level of all sounds to the ear. Three models are available; Bullseye I, Bullseye II and Bullseye III. The Bullseye I are the most popular muffs handed out on ranges as they are affordable, comfortable and have tapered external shells to give space for mounting the gun. The Bullseye II and III have larger cups but offer greater protection, so these models would be better suited to rifle shooting at the range for example. Moving on from passive protection, Peltor offers a range of electronic protection. This clever technology will block the harmful sound of a gun blast, but will allow low-level sound such as speech to be heard clearly, or even amplified. The Peltor ProTac range features the Hunter and Shooter models. New for 2017, these models offer entrylevel electronic protection. Again, the Hunter model features slimline cups and the Shooter model offers a higher level of protection. The flagship of the range of ear muffs is the Peltor SportTac. These muffs have Peltor Prices - Peltor Bullseye I £20.99 (RRP) Peltor Bullseye II £25.99 (RRP) Peltor Bullseye III £26.99 (RRP) Peltor ProTac (Hunter or Shooter model) £89.99 (RRP) Peltor SportTac £141.99 (RRP) Peltor LEP-100 £386.99 (RRP) Peltor TEP-100 £425.99 (RRP) Peltor Kid £16.99 (RRP) been developed specifically for shooters. They feature an SNR level of 26dB which is one of the highest available for electronic protection. They will amplify non-harmful sound, such as whistles, animals or environmental sounds. Also for safety, they include interchangeable orange and green cups. For shooters who prefer ear plugs but still want the features that electronic hearing protection offers, Peltor introduced the LEP- 100 and TEP-100 Electronic Ear Plugs. These small plugs work in the same way as the Peltor SportTac muffs but the convenience of plugs. Each ear plug has an independent battery so no wires are required, although they do include a cord which you can attach if necessary. The batteries to 97dB for four hours can cause damage. Any exposure to sound over 140dB can permanently damage our hearing. Harmful sound will destroy the small hair fibres in the ear. These small fibres detect the vibration in sound waves and relay that information to the brain to translate into sound. Once the hair fibres are damaged, they do not grow back or repair. This means that noise-induced hearing loss is irreparable. So how should shooters best protect their hearing? That depends on the level of sound your shooting produces and also, of course, personal comfort and requirements. A smallcalibre .22 rifle can produce around 140dB, a largebore rifle can produce over 175dB and a shotgun blast can produce over 145dB. These figures can increase depending on the location of your shooting. If the sound can bounce off walls or hills then the level of harmful sound is increased. All hearing protection is tested and issued an SNR or Single Number Rating which tells you how many dB the product will reduce harmful sound by. The level of protection will increase along with the frequency of the noise. Shooters are exposed to the most harmful sounds possible, although that sound is not constant like it would be in a factory environment for example. However, any exposure to gunfire will be dangerous. Of course it’s not only hearing protection we needare recharged either by USB or by a battery within the small pocket-sized carrying case. Both LEP-100 and TEP- 100 models offer the same level of protection (32dB), however the TEP-100 model has greater resistance to water and dust ingress. Within the range, Peltor also produce passive muffs specifically for children. Many retailers sell these to parents who take children to music concerts and sporting events. Available in two bright neon colours, children’s hearing protection should never be ignored. Children cannot simply wear adult muffs, the cups and headband need to offer a perfect seal around the ears to work. If the headband or cups are too large, the seal around the ear will not be perfect and harmful sound will be able to find its way directly to the ear. You don’t need to be a scientist to sell hearing protection products, but you do need to understand the needs of your customers and be able to offer a range of suitable products. With Peltor by 3M, you can stock a market-leading brand and a range to suit nearly all clientele. Peltor by 3M Hearing Protection is supplied to the shooting market by John Rothery Wholesale whose high stock levels and fast deliveries mean that retailers don’t need to keep a large number of products in stock. They can be sold and replenished within 48 business hours. For any further advice on hearing protection in general or specifically the Peltor range, the friendly team at Rothery’s are happy to answer any questions or find out further details. Their useful website www. bisley-uk.com features additional information on all Peltor™ by 3M™ products, including technical spec sheets which go into detail on things such as test results and exact SNR ratings at specific sound frequency levels, if such information is required.
Since its formation in 1982, the Brattonsound name has become synonymous with gunsafes in the UK. How it all started… Brattonsound founder Gerald Tagg, a keen shooter, was unhappy with the gunsafe options available to him and decided to design and manufacture his own to his high standards. From that small start demand grew, first from friends at his local shoot and then via local and regional gun shops until Bratttonsound became the brand that is so widely known today. Brattonsound sales manager, James Tagg, explains: “In the early days, there were many basic brands available on the market, but Brattonsound looked towards engineering excellence, an impressive design and build quality with a superior locking system that took the market by storm and quickly established it as a market leader. We now have over 33 models to suit all budgets.” By constant innovation Brattonsound has maintained its reputation over the 35 years. Some of its industry firsts include: • Gunsafes that exceeded police requirements rather than just meeting them • Multi-point locking on standard models • Trade only supply • Comprehensive three year on-site warranty, which is still unmatched 35 years and still going strong Gun safe manufacturer celebrates 35 years of security With its long history Brattonsound is proud to have manufactured over 360,000 gunsafes. James continues: “During those 35 years dozens of brands and low-quality imports from companies with no personal connection to shooting have come and gone. “We at Brattonsound take pride in the fact that several of our employees are keen shooters. We want to support the shooting industry and we take the responsibility of protecting our customers’ guns very seriously. This drives us to constantly improve our standards and we intend to be making high quality gunsafes for many years to come.”
“It may sound strange, but not selling directly at a stand can actually be an advantage.” Surprising words from the CEO of Le Chameau, David Robinson OBE. “It takes the pressure off your audience. If you think about the feeling most people get when they are shopping, particularly in high-end stores, it can be overwhelming. They can feel under pressure to buy, or feel embarrassed about trying things on, or getting a feel for a product.” And getting a feel for the product was what the Le Chameau stand was all about at this year’s Game Fair, held in July at Hatfield House in Hertfordshire, where the company launched its new “Feel Excellence” marketing campaign. Le Chameau, in fact, made a concerted decision not to sell their products at the three-day outdoor event, instead “we had many of our valued retailers nearby, so it was a good chance to give them the trade we might otherwise have had,” David explains. “We invited one of our ‘maître bottiers’ (master bootmakers) who has been working in the Casablanca factory for 30 years to demonstrate how the boots are made, which not only drew the crowds but visibly endorsed that our rubber boots continue to be handcrafted.” Drawing a crowd is one thing, keeping them on your stand so that they really engage with the product is another. Le Chameau’s strategy was simple: “Try them, feel them” with a full size run of a select number of men’s and women’s key styles available to all visitors. “We know that once people have the chance to try on the boots, the desire to purchase has been created.” Interestingly, the tactic of not selling directly also meant that those who already own a pair of Le Chameau boots were drawn to the stand: “They want to come and see what the new styles are, or to comment on their boots – it makes them feel engaged, and that they have a personal connection with the brand. Once you take away the pressure of buying something, people are far less shy about coming to see your products, and you attract a far wider audience.” Giving the customer the chance to ask direct questions is also a benefit, “as is giving them an opportunity to comment or give feedback,” David believes. “And of course it means we have face-to-face contact with our customers, so we learn something about them, too.” Le Chameau prides itself on the authenticity of its product and the technical ingenuity of the designs. “Demonstrating their working nature is a very good way to dispel the myth that these are a premium product merely for show. By picking up the boots, examining them, and seeing them made, people could see and understand that these are hard-wearing and hard-working boots.” The opportunity to see behind the scenes and the website, really emphasises quality, according to David, “And it takes the brand from an aspiration to reality. Once people get a feel for the boots, they are usually sold. They understand the price pitch, the value and the quality, which is something no amount of advertising can do.” Engagement is, of course, key. While Edgar Brothers only exhibits at the British Shooting Show, this is a valuable chance to touch base with the end users of their products, according to managing director Derek Edgar. “For Edgar Brothers, the British Shooting Show is very important, and it is the only consumer show we attend. We’ve chosen that one because it is the one that is the most concentrated shooting show in the country.” Part of having a stand that is not selling products is to know your audience, and to target the show that your end-users are most likely to attend. As a distribution company, rather than a manufacturing company, Edgar Brothers has a huge list of brands that it represents in the UK, “So it means that while you can look up products online, it’s rare to find a large representation of them in any one shop. We have thousands of products that we distribute.” The fact that online buying has increased exponentially does not take away the customer’s desire to get a feel for a product before buying it, and while many of an end-user’s questions can be answered online or on the phone, we are still more trusting of the face-toface contact. “We make sure that when we exhibit at the British Shooting Show, we have plenty of staff on hand who can answer questions on products. We’ve also had some of our suppliers attend, and that can be a great draw to customers, particularly when they are famous. Steve and Jason Hornady, for example, or Paolo Zoli. It’s often those small reassurances that customers want, which is something that you don’t benefit from when buying online,” Derek says. “We do make sure that the stand isn’t overwhelming in terms of products, as that can also be counteractive. However, as we don’t need to carry stock for selling, we can show more products than some of the retailers, without the stand looking too busy. So we take newly launched products, as well as old favourites, the ones that end-users might have heard of but not got a feel for.” Like Le Chameau, for Edgar Brothers the main drive is to engage with end-users, something that Derek values greatly: “It helps us to see what our customers are interested in, what they are likely to be buying and what the trends are in our industry. We can stay ahead of the game by knowing what people want, and attending shows gives us a greater insight to that.” It’s also one of the best sources of feedback, “We always know if something doesn’t work – customers will let us know. But a positive reaction is something that, as a distributor, you don’t always hear, as you are relatively far removed from the end-user. When we are at the show, however, we hear all the good feedback on our products.”
Game Fairs; Well, Scone lived up to its enviable reputation of being the best of Scottish hospitality at its beautiful site alongside the mighty Tay. Footfall was high and, in the main, the rain kept off. Exhibitors reported good sales and the message of fieldsports was eloquently promoted through the attendance of the shooting organisations. The Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust, who organise the event, are to be congratulated for their excellent promotion of the research that they carry out on our behalf. Moving on to the ‘new’ Game Fair, held for the first time ever at Hatfield House in Hertfordshire. James Gower, the very enthusiastic and energetic MD of the event, has taken the Game Fair to new heights since the demise of the CLA event two years ago. James, and his team, took on the daunting challenge of re-vitalising the CLA event and the consensus of opinion, certainly from the Trade’s point of view, is that he has succeeded. Gunmakers Row abounded with well-known names and was busy during all three days. Footfall was over the 100,000 and, in the main, the weather was kind. For sure, it is still early days but the Fair moves back to Ragley next year (where James has already run one successful Game Fair), and I suspect the trade will continue to flourish with the help, and drive, of a very hardworking and dedicated team. The EU continues to influence the day-to-day business of the gun trade in the UK. The EU Regulation on deactivated firearms (2015/2403), which came into force in April 2016 is damaging the de-ac trade to the extent that some practitioners have already ceased trading. The new specifications for de-acs are, in some cases, more draconian than deemed necessary and, in other cases, not up to our own UK standards. The Home Office has bent over backwards to help but the EU Commission (and some Member States), are adamant that the standards must be applied. We must also not forget that an EU Regulation is direct acting and must be applied by all 28 Member States (MS). I cannot, and will not, speculate on what will happen when we leave. The same observation applies to the new EU Firearms Directive (2017/853). The Directive came into force in May 2017 and we, and the other MS, have varying amounts of time to transpose the legislation into UK law. The Directive (up until the time that we leave the EU), will have an effect on a number of issues which control our use of, and trade in, sporting firearms. Amongst other things: controls on magazines, data filing systems, dealers records, collectors, target shooters, medical information, controls on some semiautomatic firearms, marking, imitation firearms (‘replicas’), acoustic weapons, blank firers and alarm guns. We are also waiting, as a result of the Policing & Crime Act 2017, for updates on the Obsolete Calibre List, the definition of ‘antique firearms’, wording on Statutory Guidance, and a resolution of the question of fees for Section 5 Authorities, Licensed Clubs and Museums and I will keep you posted.