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Finally Here! Five New Much-Anticipated Firearms

Ruger LCRx revolver with 3-inch barrel and black Hogue rubber grip

Many of this week’s highlighted products are new firearms highly anticipated by the shooting community. Other firearms, such as Winchester’s line of SXP Defender tactical pump-action shotguns, were not widely available until recently. Though some of the most recent firearms available may not be entirely brand new, such as Bushmaster’s .22 Long Rifle C22, all five firearms are creating a lot of buzz.

Winchester SXP Ultimate Defender, Extreme Defender and Extreme Marine Defender

First only available for order at SHOT Show 2014, the popularity of the new Super X Pump-Action shotgun line from Winchester drove demand to make the guns more available.

Ruger LCRx3

Some think it was a little too late in coming, but Ruger justannounced and starting shipping the LCRx .38 Special +P revolver with a 3-inch barrel, making this gun easy to shoot as well as easy to carry. Better late than never!

Bersa BP380CC

After years of promising a companion to Bersa’s polymer-framed 9mm, the BP 9 Concealed Carry, the company finally releases the BP380CC, even though it is not the .40 S&W Bersa fans hoped for.

Bushmaster C22

The tactical .22 LR AR-15-style rifle is not necessarily new, but with Remington’s move from New York to a more gun-friendly state, Freedom Group ramps up production and marketing to pit its .22 Long Rifle firearm up against Smith & Wesson’s M&P 15-22.

ArmaLite M-15 VSR and 3-Gun

At the NASGW Expo 2014, ArmaLite introduced five new M-15 rifle models, along with two AR-10 style pistol models outfitted with SIG’s SB15 stabilizing brace. The models are so new they have yet to show up on ArmaLite’s website. Cheaper Than Dirt! is shipping the VSR and one 3-Gun model.

Black Winchester tactical pump-action shotgun
The Winchester Ultimate Defender is perfect for home defense, pig hunting or tactical applications.

Winchester SXP Ultimate Defender Pump-Action Shotgun, 12 Gauge

At first only available to order at SHOT Show 2014, Winchester recently added its latest models of tactical pump-action shotgun to its regular line up. Called the Defender, the new 12-gauge pump-action shotguns  all have a 3-inch chamber, an 18-inch barrel and hold five rounds. Though all three models vary slightly in aesthetics and features, at the heart of the Winchester SXP Defender tactical shotgun is the inertia-assisted pump-action. This system allows the action on the Super X Pump to be incredibly fast, providing three shots in half a second. In fact, Winchester claims the SXP shotgun to be the “fastest in the world for follow up shots.”

Building on the Super X Pump Defender, the new Ultimate Defender kicks it up a notch by adding some tactical touches making the Ultimate Defender perfect for home defense, pig hunting or tactical applications. The Winchester 12-gauge Ultimate Defender pump-action shotgun has the same drilled and tapped aluminum alloy receiver, the same composite stock, same textured gripping panels and forend, and hard chrome metal finish for reduced wear, rust and corrosion. The Ultimate Defender features a rear Ghost ring sight, top and side Picatinny rails and a Door Breacher choke tube. Further, the Ultimate Defender has an Inflex recoil pad to absorb recoil and ideal 0.742-inch backboring, which aids in consistent patterning and velocity of your shot pellets. The Ultimate Defender has a short rise comb and length of pull at 13.75 inches, making it comfortable for a wide variety of shooters, as well as giving the shotgun a natural point of aim. The Ultimate Defender retails for $405.90. The Winchester SXP Defender Extreme is $394.90 and the Extreme Marine Defender with matte chrome barrel is $487.50.

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Ruger LCRx 3-Inch Double-Action Revolver, .38 Special

Ruger LCRx revolver with 3-inch barrel and black Hogue rubber grip
Many will appreciate the bigger, softer handling LCRx.

Since 2009, Ruger has capitalized on the success and popularity of its LC series of concealed carry revolvers. Five years later—and some say Ruger should have done this all along—the company released its newest LC revolver, the LCRx 3-inch. Like its predecessor, the LCRx 3-inch has a revolutionary double-action trigger, exposed hammer, interchangeable grip peg, polymer fire control housing, stainless steel fluted cylinder, monolithic frame and patented friction-reducing cam. However, many find the new LCRx more appealing due to its fuller and longer grip, and longer 3-inch barrel.


The larger LCRx is more of an all around gun rather than just suited for concealed carry. The 3-inch barrel makes this model more comfortable to shoot reducing the recoil of .38 Special +P ammo, as well as producing a better performing bullet and the longer sight radius allows you to be more accurate. Though longer at 7.50 inches and weighing more at just under one pound, the LCRx still carries comfortably, even in a pocket and is not cumbersome to conceal. The Ruger LCRx 3-inch comes standard with a Hogue Tamer grip without finger grooves, but the grip peg frame allows you to interchange grips to better suit your needs. The grip, when compared to the original model LCRx is fuller and longer, giving you plenty of space to wrap your fingers around the LCRx 3-inch. Also upgraded on the new model LCRx is the fully adjustable rear sight and replaceable ramp with white bar front sight. Many will appreciate the bigger, softer handling LCRx. Those who prefer revolvers for concealed carry are able to practice longer with the longer barreled model, allowing them to become more proficient at shooting.Click Here to Start Shopping Online at Cheaper Than Dirt

Black, polymer-framed .380 ACP handgun from Bersa
It may not look like all that much, but Bersa fans have eagerly awaited the coming of this self-defense and carry guns from Bersa.

Bersa BP Concealed Carry Semiautomatic Handgun, .380 ACP

The Bersa BP Concealed Carry (CC) is Bersa’s first polymer-framed semiautomatic handgun chambered in .380 ACP. Designed for concealed carry and self-defense, Bersa developed its new .380 to hold more rounds than the standard subcompact .380s on the market, as well as incorporate a fuller grip for a better hold on the gun. Holding eight rounds, with a 3.3-inch barrel, the BP380CC is 6.35 inches long and 0.94 inches wide. It has a short reset double-action only trigger and interchangeable sights. The front sight is compatible with SIG Sauer #8 sights, while the rear fits GLOCK sights. There are three safeties, an ambidextrous magazine release, and a polymer frame. The gun weighs 21.4 ounces.

Bersa introduced its polymer-framed handguns years ago, but none actually ever came to market. Without much fanfare, the new Concealed Carry, striker-fired .380 started shipping this month. Though not much on the Bersa BP380CC stands out from the crowd—its four-pound trigger is lighter than many guns in its class. It took the company years after releasing its 9mm BP9CC, but the Bersa BP380CC is finally here and shipping. It may not look like all that much, but Bersa fans have eagerly awaited the coming of this self-defense and carry gun from Bersa. At $351.12, the lighter, cleaner trigger alone is worth checking out this easy-to-shoot and operate .380 ACP.Click Here to Start Shopping Online at Cheaper Than Dirt

Bushmaster C22 Semiautomatic Rifle, .22 Long Rifle

Black .22 Long Rifle tactical-style rifle made by Bushmaster
The Bushmaster C22 looks like a standard M4 with all the controls in the same place as a traditional .223 Remington AR-15 rifle.

Though not brand new, the Bushmaster C22 has been an allusive .22 tactical trainer that has been overshadowed by the popularity of the S&W M&P 15-22, Beretta ARX 100 and the inexpensive Mossberg 715. Now, however, Freedom Group decided to boost production of the Carbon-15-based rimfire and taut it as competition for Smith & Wesson’s M&P 15-22. The Bushmaster C22 looks similar to a standard M4—including the controls in the same place as a traditional .223 Remington AR-15 rifle. To keep weight down, Bushmaster built this particular model on a carbon fiber upper and lower receiver. The proprietary barrel nut is the only thing not 5.56 AR-15 standard.

The Bushmaster C22 functions reliably and accurately, just as well as any of the other tactical .22 LR rifles out there. Unlike its competitors, however, the Bushmaster C22 has the ability to accept a .223 upper. It has a 16-inch M4 profile barrel with 1:16-inch twist, an A2 front sight and six-position collapsible synthetic stock. It accepts 25-round aftermarket .22 LR AR-15 style magazines.Click Here to Start Shopping Online at Cheaper Than Dirt

Black ArmaLite AR-15 rifle with Luth-AR stock
The ArmaLite VSR has an 18-inch barrel and a .223 Wylde chamber with a 1:8-inch twist.

ArmaLite M-15 Versatile Sporting Rifle Semiautomatic Rifle, .223 Wylde

Clearly, ArmaLite wants an entry into the “really cool ARs” category with the introduction of its new 2015 M-15 models—the Tactical, 3-Gun and VSR (Versatile Sporting Rifle). Débuting at the 2014 NASGW Expo, ArmaLite worked quickly to get the new M-15 rifles to distributors. Not all models are available yet, however, the VSR and one model of the 3-Gun are in stock and shipping!

The VSR has an 18-inch barrel and a .223 Wylde chamber with a 1:8-inch twist. Designed by Bill Wylde, the .223 Wylde chamber has the external dimensions and lead angle of a 5.56mm NATO cartridge and the same diameter as the .223 Remington. The .223 Wylde barrel is capable of shooting both 5.56x45mm NATO and .223 Remington ammo accurately and reliably. Shooting competitors prefer the.223 Wylde chamber. The VSR has a Luth-AR MBA-1 reversible rifle stock with adjustable cheek riser.

There are two models made specifically for 3-gun matches—one with an 18-inch barrel and one with a 13-inch barrel. The difference between the two is the permanently attached muzzle brake on the 13-inch model. Currently, Cheaper Than Dirt! is selling the 18-inch model only. On the barrel is a tunable muzzle brake made in-house by ArmaLite. It has a .223 Wylde chamber just like the VSR and the same Luth-AR adjustable stock. The 3-Gun model has a three-pound Timney single-stage trigger, along with an ambidextrous safety, Raptor charging handle and KeyMod handguard.Click Here to Start Shopping Online at Cheaper Than Dirt

Are any of these guns one you have been waiting for? Tell us which one and why in the comment section.



The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (12)

  1. The last time I fired a revolver was back around 1983. Today for Christmas, Santa presented me with a S&W340PD, Scandium-framed Titanium Cylinder Revolver and a box of Buffalo Bore .38+P 158gr. bullets. Any recommendations on either Shoulder Holsters or Behind-the-back rigs. There’s a 3-inch gap between me and my Wheelchair in the back. Wheelchair rigging not needed, already have manufacturer for that…

  2. The little Ruger should be the perfect trail gun…much like the SW model 60 3 inch……the external hammer is a really big deal on a trail gun…when in federal law enforcement I trained on 50 and 100 yard shots with a 3 inch SW and I know what can be done with practice…..hitting a gallon jug 3 out of 5 times at 100 is really pretty easy with practice…….try that with your Glock or Sig……adjustable sites and a single action mode is critical….most of us will not use this gun for 100 yards shots…..but an occassional coyote at 40 yards is doable… and shots on skunks and such at 15 yards is much easier with the single action mode…..I will have one….

  3. Already bought my wife the LCRx for Christmas. It will replace her snub LCR, which she found to sting her hand. She enjoys shooting my SP-101 because its easier to hit with, but it is an inch longer and heavier than the LCRX so she didnt want it for CC. The LCRx seems a perfect solution for her.
    If she doesnt like it, I do : )

  4. I’d like to see the Ruger LCR in a Magnum varient .41 Mag whould be nice. maybe .44 Mag. I suppose as long as im making a wish list that I might as well include the .357 Mag as well . .
    All the five choices are interesting in their own way. I don’t know about them being “… much anticapated…” But will presume that there are those out there looking forward to one or another of these five to be available. Good read and good information. Thanks for a nice write up Suzanne.

    1. Pretty sure in 41 or 44 Mag the LCR would blow up in your hand. They are not built for that kind of pounding.
      357 is about it…and they are not fun to shoot with full-power loads. Gets painful

    2. As I understand, the 357 models are not the alloy frame (like the other, smaller caliber LCRs). They’re a bit heavier too, because of their steel, not polymer/alloy frame. While you would loose the appeal of the LCR (it’s light weight), with the steel frame, I suppose it could be made in any reasonable caliber… I have no problem or complaints with the 357 LCR, but I’m not very recoil sensitive. I actually find it quiet confortable with the hogue tamer grips, but that’s just me.

    3. @Jack B Nimbel
      Hey JBN,
      I have reread you comment a couple of times and it has me thinking. I agree that the weight issue might put some off or at least make them make a face….. The balancing act always seems to be between production cost / materials / MSRP. I’m not much of a wheel gun enduser and only own a few. Those being primarily for dangerous game protection. I don’t see why a Titaninum varient in the magnum calibers using a beefed up (read stronger) varient of the LCRx wouldn’t be posdible. Weight would be kept down of reduced, size might not increase greatly and only cost might go up noticeably. Thoughts??

    4. @Matty G
      I had presumed that a 41 or 44 mag variant of the LCR would require some degree of upgrade strengthening. Its the frame and grip shape that is intriguing.
      Shooting the Magnums is a study in the geometry and ergonomics of the various platforms designed to fire them. Grip shape and cant, grip position in relation to barrel, barrel leant, porting, weight distribution and several other minor points are in great part how recoil (actual or perceived) is transmitted to the hand and forearm. Some manufactures/platforms simply took their smaller caliber brothers and beefed the frames, barrel and cylinder to accommodate the magnum loads and accompanying pressures but didn’t significantly or at all change the ergonomics of geometry to account for the larger loads and transmitted energy. These platforms are what has given a bad reputation to the various Magnum cartridges. Not the cartridges themselves. it’s the old story of taking what you have, changing as little as possible, an then selling it as something new. Sometimes it works, sometime not so much.
      There are platforms that were designed from the ground up as magnums. The Ruger Blackhawks and RedHawks come to mind. Either of these are very comfortable to shoot with full loads. The basic “Peace Maker” shape, what most of us associate with Cowboys is very conducive to the magnum calibers. All that really needed with them is a set of grips that allow for a small thumb rest and positive positioning of the little finger.
      For the, let’s call them, MegaMags, or what might be considered the true Hand Cannons, like the .454 Causall, ,500 and others of that family, completely new revolver designs were required. One might consider them just short of a crew served weapon! They look like a revolver, have all the correct components, in all the right places but that’s were the resemblance ends. The ergonomics have evolved allowing for a mere human to actually discharge one, retain and maintain control of it, without undue injury to themselves or others (for the most part anyway).The Geometry of these MMags allow for accurate shots with a little practice. Porting one of these true hand cannons isn’t an option but a survival requirements for firing one!
      Make no mistake the MMags are NOT “fun” to shoot. They are expensive, heavy, bulky, very very loud, brutal recoil and are not for the weak handed or faint of heart. Their purpose was and is as a hunting platform. A big game and/or dangerous game hunting platform. The Taraus and Smith MMags are such hand cannons. I suppose that they might be repurposed for other uses, . . .stopping lightly armored vehicles, bike padlock removal, defeating reinforced doors, stopping commercial trucks and those kinds of things may be possible. Although I can’t imagine discharging one of the MMags inside of an enclosed space. That would be bad for ALL involved.
      Sorry, off beam here. My original comment was really just a “if wishes were horses ….” kind of thing. The LCRx just seems to lend its outward design to the possibility of a Magnum offering. I was simply stating those calibers I thought would be popular if that should come to pass.
      I think that your most assuready correct that in its present configuration that it’s not capable of Magnum application, not even .357 I’d bet, Ruger has always had a reputation for building their revolvers about 25% stronger than any other manufacture in the market. They routinely make their cylinder walls and barrels thicker and stronger than most. In some reloading books and tabled there are foot notes to the effect that (and I’m paraphrasing here). “Loadings shown here in … Red … Are not to be used in any firearm other than the Ruger Blackhawks, or RedHawks, or Magnum classed revolvers” I don’t know about that status today but not long ago Ruger had the strongest Mags going.
      Hope your family has a wonderful an safe Holiday!! Pete sends …

    5. @ Pere in Alaska: The ammo in question was Buffalo Bore Heavy .44Magnum +P+ ammo, which was specifically designed of certain Ruger firearms. S&W claimed the their guns could also use the same ammo. So, a private competition between Ruger Firearms and S&W Firearms was conducted. S&W, lost. As far as the 125% claim, all US. Manufactured Firearms, with the exception of the .50-calibre (12.7x99mm/BMG). Have to meet the 125% proof standard, with a “proof charge” not once, but twice. The .50-calibre BMG only needs to meet a ~117% proof standard. A “Proof Standard” is not to be confused with either the “Proven Standard” or the Bursting Charge Standard”.

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