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The Crimson Trace Gunsite fun actually started Monday night with a steak dinner on Iain Harrison’s dime followed by some drinking at the bar to celebrate his first American birthday. But when I woke up Tuesday morning and rolled into the Gunsite classroom, I felt like a kid on Christmas morning. They loaded us down with a ton of Crimson Trace, Ruger, Safariland and Leupold swag, then handed us an LCR, an LCP, an SR1911 and an SR-556. Along with a Leupold optic for each gun and Safariland holsters to hold them all. Oh, and as much Doubletap ammo as I can feed everything. Already loaded in the magazines, no less. In short, these guys know how to party. Stay tuned for some video of the goings on all day long, scheduled to post as I’m out getting more to share during Day 2.

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  1. Totally unbiased report to follow, I’m sure. *snort*

    Don’t mind me. I’m 80% jealous, 20% skeptical that anyone could report objectively given the circumstances outlined in this dispatch.

  2. I look forward to reading about the results of the laser and the LCR. Regardless, the $299 MSRP for the laser and almost the same street price really are very high. That steak sounds really good. Think I’ll go find a good steak house.

  3. So, is this sort of thing open to the public or is it just a press junket? Granted, I get how things work – suck up to journalists in hopes of getting more and better press, but I assume this sort of thing costs money – money that is recouped in higher prices for Crimson Trace gear to the consumer.

    The midnight three gun event made sense – it was open to top three gun competitors and it demoed Crimson Trace’s product line well. This thing – not so sure. Sure, I’m jealous and think its cool that Nick is so tight with the CT guys, but I’m not sure how interested I am in reading about this sort of thing if I will never have the opportunity to try it myself. It’s one thing to review a product or experience that others could purchase or do (assuming that they had the money), but I don’t really see much sense in covering events that the rest of us “General Public” types could never get an invite to.

    Plus, as AlphaGeek suggests, any positive reviews of CT gear may be looked at with a serious grain of salt. I personally purchase everything that I review (instruction/gear/gun) so I am not beholden to anyone to give favorable reviews. The problem is that if a reviewer goes ga ga over CT gear after something like this, it does make one wonder whether said reviewer really liked the gear or if they just really like staying on the guest list for future events.

    TTAG has a reputation as a no B.S. just the truth publication, but too much of this press junket stuff and one wonders if we are going to start seeing G&A style puff pieces. Something to think about.

    And by the way – I don’t mean to single Nick out. Though I’ve never met him, he seems to be a stand up guy. I’m just suggesting that merely appearing to have a conflict of interest can be devastating to a publication’s credibility.

    • While not every review they publish is a gem, Consumer Reports definitely gets one thing right: like Jim Barrett, they buy everything they review on the open market, from the same channels & same inventory as regular consumers.

      Between the press junkets and the frequent inside-baseball comments about getting T&E samples for testing, it’s not exactly a secret that TTAG plays the game with the purveyors of fine toys to obtain review fodder. It would be nice if there were a little more balance, perhaps with more independent-contributor reviews of personally purchased gear.

      In the last couple of months I’ve personally bought and thoroughly tested two different models of Weatherby 20-gauge (the Turkish imports) and a nifty yet inexpensive Itac retention paddle holster for my USP. I’m sure I’m not the only one who would be glad to contribute reviews of bought-and-paid-for products.

  4. yeah sounds like serious envy. have fun nick and look forward to vicarious enjoyment of story to follow.

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