In a nutshell - I'm mostly into assault rifles so here goes MY OPINIONS:
SIG 556 - very cool, heavy, was expecting AR weight but it was heavier. The AR flash hiders that everyone's seen in the pics were not on the rifles present, some had vortex and one had a real SIG style hider, nice. The lower receiver is different than the 550 series and there's NO WAY a 550 folder is gonna go directly on the new ones. I told every one of the SIG guys that I talked to - "you gotta put the 550 stock on it." Told em there's NO REASON to have the stupid CAR stock, that it cheapens it and everyone wants to play SWAT like the 550. One of the bigger shots said they did a "lot" of market research on the gun and I was about to say - bullshit - everybody that I talked to who was looking at the rifles agreed that the stock was shit. The big shot said that the CAR stock was what everyone wanted. I said go read the threads on subguns and other sites. One stock was even broken already and wouldn't retract. The stock is cheap – has to be the junkiest CAR stock you can buy. The rifles are ALL solid black which looked cool. The mags they had with the guns were some CHEAPO shit AR plastic mags, not even close to Thermold quality and when I stuck one in to a gun and racked the slide the hold open didn't work so I had to drop and reseat the mag. One of the younger sales dudes said SIG would come up with the folder for the 556 but most of their guys said the CAR style was gonna be it for now and MAYBE some aftermarket like ACE would do it. The rear of the receivers on 556 and 550 are completely different - the way it is now there is NO WAY you're just gonna stick a 55x folder on there. Overall, WAY COOL gun but I ain't gonna buy one until it looks better or there's a way to replace the CRAP AR stuff. I hope they include some real SIG diopter sights on there too but didn't see any and didn't ask if you could. The sights on them now are crap EMERGENCY types. All rifles had rails welded on top. I'd much prefer the old style with iron and some way to put a mount but it seems they wanna go high tech so you can mount your laser-thermal-night vision-JDAM-aimer or other bullshit on it. I can't even keep track of all the mounts and shit on the forearm. Just give me a SIG 550 type without all the WATERWORLD shit. Even the forearm construction seemed CRAPPY. There's a hole in the receiver above the trigger - no one seemed to know what it was for, maybe just a prototype feature.
They had some real shorty 552s there - OH MAN. To me it's the sweetest gun on the planet. It's perfection. Why SIG just doesn't make a copy of the original that takes AR mags - who the hell knows. I've seen the posts here from IronBalaclava - yo Sig - hire this guy because he's done more homework than you. You handle the real 552 and then you look at the 556 and it pisses you off.
ARs – man, everybody and their dad is making CARs and ARs – Smith and Wesson even! CMMG had nice ones. All DPMS stuff was nice too, they had a 308 CAR with the piston system. Rock River is really nice stuff too, no wobbly play between upper and lower. Then there was another maker of ARs there too, SaberTech, big booth and they had some real quality ARs too. DSA's ARs are super too, as are all their FALs, just real solid and tight and you can tell the quality. All the DURACOAT camo finishes looked cool as hell, about $300 ea. It seemed every AR/CAR had the multi rails all over them. Seems like everyone's jumping to make shit to stick on the rails, but personally, I tried the front pistol grips on the AR series and I much prefer the regular old way of holding it.
Absent was VECTOR, really wanted to see their HK clones but looks like they didn't have a booth. HK had all their cool shit but asides from pistols they offer the consumer NOTHING! "You guys gonna sell the 416 upper?" No, it's made in Germany.
ARES wasn't there either, wanted to see the $5000 whatchamacallit upper.
FN – oh boy, almost had a full rod when I saw BOTH SCAR heavy and light there. What's cool about the shot show is that they let you handle all the shit. Both SCARs – extremely light. Looks heavier but they aren't. Really cool. The lower and upper are some kinda high tech carbon fiber space plastic shit. All around AWESOME feel, finish, etc. The heavy has proprietary mags - why not use FAL mags? ANSWER TO BIG QUESTION – they won't be available to civs until a few more years. That's all I could get. My concern would be the plastic lower – would much rather have an alum one but that's what SOCOM or whomever wanted. I'd buy one in a flash if they were out. Wonder how that PLASTIC lower is gonna perform though. They musta played with the idea to make it in aluminum?
The PS90 – friggin awesome! Optical sight was crap. The FS2000 – fucking cool. The spent cases eject from the front! They slide along the side of the rifle and are actually NOT ejected, they kinda wait in line in a slot and then fall out as they get pushed out. So if none have fallen out you tip the rifle and then they fall out. Kinda funky. Mag does NOT drop free, you gotta pull it out, that's the way it was designed. Would have bought both guns right there if they had em for sale. FINALLY someone is making assault rifles for us schmos! – unlike HK. WTF?
The Five-Seven pistol. Had absolutely no interest in it, was drooling over the SCARs until I picked the sucker up and the dude told me all about it. It's HOT. Nice trigger, 20 round mag of the new crazy ammo. Awesome. I'm sold on that one too. They had all their FNP series handguns there – very, very nice, only you've gotta pull the trigger WAY back before it goes bang. Guess you can get used to it. They had all their SAWs and sniper guns there. Very nicely done.
ROBINSON XCR – woulda bought it right there. Small booth but I think that's the rifle everyone should be buying. Everything about it was awesome. True they got out of competition from the USGOVT because they forgot to send in a flash hider. NO M96 there, they said they were concentrating on the XCR. This gun is the shit. Removable barrel. Three lug beefy bolt. Super simple. Seemed like they were still trying to tweak it before they start selling them. Owner was cool, you can tell he wants to make it right before it goes mass.
Century Arms Yugo AK folder – beautiful. Said they had orders for 6000 of them. It was perfect. Except for the parker finish you'd think it was the real deal.
Beretta had a surprise – one of those Eurofag looking CX storm or whatever the hell it is – THAT TAKES AR mags! Telescoping stock, pistol grip – way, way cool.
STEYR AUG for civvies – they said it would be a few years. It's surprising how heavier the A3 is from the old style. Really nice, they were all black. Old dude there said civvie version is being worked on but one of the issues was the IRAN thing.
Huge convention – could easily have spent three solid days there. It's a MUST if you are into guns. Don't take a taxi in Vegas if you can get on the monorail.
Well written, borat......thanks for taking the time to report!!
edited to say Welcome aboard!!!
Good write up, thats for doing it; and welcome to the site!
any idea on a price range for the SIG 556?
I understand wanting to stay true to the look of a SIG 550, but what good is a folding stock except to store the rifle? I prefer the look of the folding stock and I am getting used to the collapsible stock.
$1300 for 2 standard models with raised receiver rail and zoomy foregrips and $1800 for the SWAT model with quad rail, and what looks like better sights. Receiver rail flush on SWAT model, apparently.
SIG 556 SPECIFICATIONS & FEATURES
............................SIG 556 L.......SIG 556......SIG 556 SWAT
Caliber: ---------------------- 5.56 mm ----------------------
Overall Length: ........36.5”..........36.5”............36.5”
Length w/ Stock Folded: 33”........33”..............33”
Barrel Length: ...........16”............16”.................16”
Sight Radius: ............21”...........17.75”.............17.75”
Forearm: --------- Polymer SIG TriRail --------Quad Rail
Rifling: ----------------------- 1 in 9” ------------------------
Weight w/o Mag.:.......7.2 lbs........6.8 lbs........6.8 lbs
Operating System:------- Gas Operated, Rotating Bolt ------
Magazine Capacity: 30 Rnds........30 Rnds........30 Rnds
This was the best no bullshit report so far. A must read for the MTV generation.
I'm starting to save my coin now for one of those guns next year.