Across the street from the NRA show, Jon Patton of The Gun Collective (TGC) put together and emceed a great event. Called the Ultimate Gun Guy Q&A Panel Meet N’ Greet, it brought together some of the big name YouTube and podcast gun guys in an open forum where attendees could say “hi,” walk away with tons of awesome prizes, and ask the gun guys a question. Any question . . .
Jon did a great job emceeing.
He took questions from the audience as folks lined up for the mic at the rear of the room. The panelists were great sports and are all really funny, nice guys except for the one (he knows who he is). Eventually Jon cut the questions off after three hours so everyone could get back to the show. Those in attendance certainly learned a lot about some of their favorite gun guy personalities and about the industry. I left early, but some of the quality questions I heard included:
- How do I get into the gun industry?
- What’s the worst gun product you’ve ever reviewed/used?
- How and why did you get started making YouTube videos?
- One for Zeke from SDI about why they’ve been concentrating almost exclusively on “new media” marketing and how it has been working out for them.
On the “worst gun product” question, most of the panelists were fairly diplomatic and didn’t name names. Some mentioned that it’s often the case that they’ll receive a pre-production sample so their experience may not be relevant to the actual, production product. The Gun Collective is rapidly gaining a following for being straightforward and honest, like TTAG, so Patton didn’t hold back. Another panelist shared that they’ve played with a handful of UTAS UTS-15 shotguns and have never encountered a reliable one. Nods all around, and a conclusion that it’s a fine toy but not suited for defensive use.
Two products immediately popped into my mind — Jon, you need a blogger on the panel next time! — as the worst I’ve reviewed, so I’ll go ahead and share. The Juggernaut Tactical JuggerBrake absolutely earned its zero-star review, and the USFA ZiP 22LR eked out one star in this review from a few years ago before I was officially “on staff” here.
Jon arranged a bunch of sponsors and a ton of schwag to give away. All the shirts and stuff you see in front of the panelists in that first photo were thrown into the audience (or at the audience, depending on it you saw the shirt coming or not), and every person who asked a question of the panel got serious goods. Handguards and magazines from Lancer Systems, a night vision optic (on the dummy head in front of Tim in that first photo), Falkor Defense GLOCK magazine extensions, muzzle brakes, and charging handles, holsters from a few manufacturers, flashlights, a TGC custom Benchmade knife, parts from Kinetic Development Group including a handguard, a handguard from Manicore Arms, ammunition from Lehigh Defense and CCI, slings and accessories from Boxer Tactical, a bunch of binary target explosive kits (600 lbs in total!) from US Chemical Supply, patches and stickers from Patriot Patch Co, a Hornady turret reloading press (courtesy SDI), those really cool wooden flags from Jordan Cove Co., a training marker conversion kit from UTM (donated by MTAC Training in IN), and more. Tons and tons of stuff. Everybody in attendance got something.
It was a great event, and I’m looking forward to the next one.
Finally, here’s a quick video of Jon introducing the panelists: