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“There were 185,345 background hoicehecks on November 27,” reported, “easily beating the previous all time high of 177,170 on December 21, 2012, which was shortly after the Sandy Hook massacre in Connecticut.” The Black Friday sales surge came hot on the heels of the San Bernardino terrorist attack and President Obama’s [most recent] civilian disarmament remarks. “The Bureau processed 2,243,030 checks through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System in November, an increase of 236,111 checks over the previous record set in 2012,” reported. Here are the top 5 guns Americans were buying in November a . . .

As for the semis listed at the top of this post, the Shield may have a loooong trigger pull, but it’s size and reliability have made it the pocket pistol to beat. The SIG P938 is an absolute jewel of a Colt clone. It’s not my first choice for a carry gun for a newbie, thanks to its external safety, but what do I know? Clocking the G43 and LCP on that list, and considering the other choices, it’s clear that concealed carry is THE thing in the semi-automatic pistol market. GLOCK 19? The safest full-size choice in semis, bar none, on every level.


Glad to see the Smith & Wesson 686 at the top of this its; it’s the sine qua non of modern revolvers, IMHO. As for the 629 and 642, let’s just say Smith’s domination of the revolver market is well-earned. They’re producing heirloom quality pieces in Springfield. Ruger’s LCR also deserves its custom; the pocket pistol has the best out-of-the-box trigger of any non-high end wheelgun on the market.


Interesting that Colt is doing so well. If the bankrupt company can focus its attention on the consumer market, their brand awareness could well keep the wolf from the door. Kel-Tec’s revised folding SUB-2000 is such an awesome trunk gun that it was only a matter of time before it zoomed to the top of the pops – now that Kel-Tec’s building them in quantity. Ruger and Smith are riding the AR surge with well-built, dead simple, keenly-priced products.


Ruger’s got to be happy that their Precision Rifle is a hit. Remington Outdoors must be relieved that their massive trigger-based recall of the 700 hasn’t kept the rifle from selling in bulk. It’s nice to see Savage doing well, too; the company’s AccuTrigger-equipped rifles are a blessing. Browning? Go FN-USA!


Again, it seems that bad publicity hasn’t kept a gunmaker from selling weapons. Freedom Group (as it was known at the time) did everything they could to kill Marlin. And yet, there it is. Henry Repeating Rifles must be grinning ear-to-ear at its popularity. An excellent choice for a lever gun from a company with customer service that’s second-to-none.


The quality of modern shotguns is astounding. All of the above are guns that will run and run and run for generations. If you’re waterfowl, be afraid. Be very afraid. Benellis are expensive as hell, but worth every penny.


Ha! The Kel-Tec KSG is a singular firearm with its bullpup design and 12-round capacity (plus one in the pipe). Not an easy gun to run, but the home defense shotgun of choice for buyers who want one of the most fearsome smoothbores extent. Of course, the 870 and 500 are on the list; they’ve earned their bones for value, reliability and versatility.

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    • Or, you know, they could be right…

      Que anecdotes about problems with mentioned guns that don’t really mean anything…

      • Yep, thousands of people with defective products, like the exploding Pinto don’t mean a thing. Remington is probably doing so well cause it’s the gun Dad and Gramps carried and it’s on sale down at Big 5.

        • Wasn’t the exploding Pinto more of a hit piece, and it turned out they didn’t have any higher rate of rear-impact conflagrations than any other car of the era?

        • Yeah, the pinto was a bust, but that did not mean that every one of Ford’s cars were and or continue to be. Many companies have made similar boneheaded moves and were able to respond to the market, fix the problem and return to quality. Name a company that has been around for awhile and I can guarantee they have made stupid decisions and the market called them out on it. Remember the Edsel? Stupid seems to come around every couple of generations or so. Anyway those companies that didn’t fix the problem are not with us anymore. If you don’t like it don’t buy it, as for me I will pay attention to people I know who actually use the things rather than a bunch of internet writers who are loving the clickbait. What I see at TTAG is an echo chamber where in a kernel of truth has turned into an oak tree of myth.

        • Joe, I have multiple personal experiences with defective Remington products. In my case it ain’t internet myth.

        • Whereas my 870 runs like a champ. Seems like some lines are managed to rot while others are left to maintain success. The 700 is the former and my experience is that the 870 is the latter.

      • Yeah, keep giving your money to sh*t companies who make sh*t products; you’re 100% right, doesn’t mean anything to me.

        • Excuse me, but I haven’t a problem with my 887. Have you owned one? And if you have, that doesn’t mean everyone else had the same experience as you or another someone else. No need to judge someone for choosing to buy whatever product they see fit to buy.

    • More than that. There are certainly more than one (1) weapon sold per check. I’d guess is more than two (2) per check. Stripped AR lower I’d bet the qty average is at least five (5) per check

      Someone/somewhere likely has a number weapons per check. As Nov is the gift buying month (+1 for me) I’ll hazard sales in Nov were 5.5million +.

    • Keep in mind as well that some not insignificant percentage of those firearms were sold to first time buyers with little or no experience or training and STILL the “gun violence” stats didn’t climb, nor did the instances of accidental shootings or negligent discharges.

      Not o say that training is a bad thing, but…

  1. “It’s not my first choice for a carry gun, thanks to its external safety, but what do I know?”

    Don’t you carry a 1911?

      • Why do you think external safeties are bad for newbies?

        Tons of “newbies” over multiple decades learned to shoot semi’s such as 1911’s, Browning Hi Power and CZ-75…for example…LONG before Glock hit the market and their marketing department convinced pop culture that there is something intrinsically “wrong” or “difficult” about a handgun with a manual safety.

        Someone doesn’t LIKE a manual safety and therefore chooses not to have one is one thing…but acting like it is some hi-tech brain-befuddler that requires multiple degrees in rocket surgery to operate is disingenuous at best.

        Be “The Truth” about this issue and stop spreading FUD. External safety yes/no is a personal choice and nothing more than that. I promise you I’ve seen many “newbies” learn to shoot a semi with external safety just fine…and become as deadly as they hopefully never need to be with such a firearm.

  2. Production capability has a bunch to do with this, I guess. I have contributed to Mossberg’s position on the tactical pump shotgun list (590A1 under the tree), but I was completely unable to assist DPMS in achieving the same, since there is not a GII Recon available anywhere in the country, I can’t even get an estimate of when they’ll catch up.

    • Well, I don’t know how my tag got changed to “Never”, above, but that was me, and I have little complaint since this site has been working perfectly for a week or 2 now, I am shocked, most pleasantly, RF, congrats to you and your team.

  3. I’m surprised, considering how premium priced a 938 is compared to other pocket guns.

    If Henry made an 1895 or similar rifle with a loading gate, they’d have the top 4 in the lever market instead of 2-4

    • “I’m surprised, considering how premium priced a 938 is compared to other pocket guns.”

      Some (a lot?) people shop for ‘value’ rather than price tag. To them, and largely based either on personal experience with the brand or Sig’s reputation, a pistol such as the 938 delivers enough value to offset the price difference.

      A friend of mine just got one. He’s pretty excited about it.

      • ^^This. I bought a Ruger SR-556 this summer at $1,500.00. Lots of cheaper ARs out there, but I REALLY like this rifle and I have had a lot of good history with Ruger products.

        It’s plain to see from these lists why S&W and Ruger stocks skyrocketed in the Fall. I just hope the people who invested don’t decide to donate to the Hillary campaign, that would really suck.

      • A lot more than I thought, considering I expected Kel-Tec to dominate the list because of their price.

        I’m not complaining. I’d feel just fine carrying a 938.

    • I carry a 938 (sport model with extreme grips). Love it.
      My wife carries a shield. She doesn’t like it as much but she’s getting an apex trigger tomorrow to fix that. Shh!

  4. The San Bernadino attack was AFTER Black Friday (early December). The Paris attack was shortly before Black Friday. I’d bet that the San Bernadino attack’s resulting gun sales surge will continue for a while.

  5. “We’re consumers. We are bi-products of a lifestyle obsession. Murder, crime, poverty, these things don’t concern me. What concerns me are celebrity magazines, television with 500 channels, some guy’s name on my underwear.”

    • Funny thing is none of what you said concerns me. Seems I’m ready to be a monk? All that concern me are my bank accounts and my guns. Oh yea almost forgot family. Got money? Save some, spend a bit more than that, then invest the majority

    • In the last fifteen years, I have owned three of them. 2 of them (32 auto and 9mm) were absolute garbage. 3 trips back to factory for the 32, 2 for 9. Gone. The P3AT 380 I had, I beat the hell out of. 1500+ rounds, never a single issue and I was trying to make it fail. Seems to be luck of the draw.

      • I busted the trigger bar on a test P3AT about 600 rounds in.
        KT fixed it and got it back to me inside a week with an updated frame.

        Their pistols are ehh. Their folding carbines are, so far as I’ve heard, totally solid, if a bit cheap around the edges.

        • It really may be one of those ‘ Luck of the Draw ‘ situations with KT stuff , because you can’t discount what so many people report as just KT haters . I think there is a percentage of people though who are just ‘ KTHs ‘ because they get disgruntled because they can’t get the products or the street prices are almost always higher than MSRP so they just become KTHs . The problem I have is this . I own 3 PMR 30s and 2 CMR 30s and a KSG and I am freaking thrilled with all of them . They are a blast to shoot , reliable and light weight marvels . I have had no real issues unless paying above MSRP is considered an issue and I am one who believes in paying for what I WANT . I know I am blessed to be able to afford fun and functional firearms and the ammo they enjoy eating and I thank God for my blessings at least once daily .
          I love my Rugers , well built and ruggedly reliable and Savage Arms has always done well for me in value and quality , great factory triggers and I also like my Mossberg guns , no problems , good value .
          As has been pointed out here multiple times , to each his own .
          The article is talking about sales , not satisfaction , so it really doesn’t fall under the criteria of critique . If I advertise well enough I could probably sell enough shit to make the list before the SHTF so to speak , but ………….

    • I’ve got a a Kel-tec P3AT (.380 DAO pocket gun) never had a lick of trouble out of it with several hundred rounds thru it. Good pocket rocket. Oh course I also have a Rock Island GI.45 that I love as well and would put up against any of the +1000 dollar ones made by the big names. I’ve tried to make the .45 fail…. steel cased ammo, ball,hollow points, lead, wad cutters etc. It just eats it all. But i did polish the feed ramp just because I could. I use the factory 8 shot mag marked “novac” and 2 wilson combat mags(flea market 10$ each 🙂

    • I can’t offer any advice about their pistols, but my mom loves her Sub-2000 (9mm, Glock magazines) and my dad loves his KSG. Both were bought new at gun shows in FL within the past year, much more readily available than in the past.

    • I have owned two. A PF-9 and a sub-2000. Sold both, but I will by another sub-2000 one day. I bought it on impulse, and sold it three weeks later for a decent profit. Regretted it almost imeadiately.

      I won’t buy another PF-9 though. It wasn’t terrible, but I never loved it.

  6. I am a mite surprised at the Kel-tec sales. Not the Sub 2000 but the KSG sales. I belong to a FB KSG group and know lots of folks love ’em. I have no use for their pistols(I had one as well as a 1st gen Sub 2000).The rifle was very good… Where’d the Millennium G2 111 ascendancy go? I guess they stopped giving them away. And the Sig #2-I rarely see them in shops. Whatever-Merry Christmas everyone!

  7. People need to shut their cock holsters about what kind of guns others are buying,that’s a personal choice and everybody doesn’t want to be like “you”,,believe it or not.At least people are buying guns and that’s a good thing. I like my mini-14 better than I like the ar-15 and I can assure you I can protect my home with it along with my other guns. If I couldn’t afford another gun I’d buy a high point and be happy with it. I own several guns,rifles,shotguns,and pistols and I can find good and bad reviews on all of them from all the internet gun experts.You can always tell one of them by the things they say,”i was in the military for a hundred years………………”,My ex brother in law was a cop for 30 years…………..”,unless you’re a gun smith and actually designed a working model of firearm,your opinion is worth about as much as the next clown.Being a cop means all you do is carry a pistol and go to the range every now and then,being ex military in most cases is that you’ve been to the range a few times and might have shot at someone in a foreign war,it doesn’t make you a firearms expert.

    • Your Future Reptilian Overlords are well versed in intergalactic domination. And when we are not wielding planet destroying plasma cannons we prefer the Sig P220

  8. Marlin 1895 because 45-70 is the closest thing you can get to truly armor piercing, rhinoceros piercing and general soul destroying.


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