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Bullpup Pistols and Skinny Derringers

Bond Arms of Texas had its booth in the usual place at SHOT, and at first glance, there wasn’t a whole lot new to see on their display tables.

An inquiry with the booth crew did turn up a pair of new product offerings for 2019, however.

The first was a new slimline derringer, greatly reduced in size from the typical Bond Arms offering.

The stacked barrels are machined flat on the sides, giving them a width not much over half an inch. The bulbous wooden grip panels, emblazoned with Bond’s Texas star logo, are by far the widest portion of the firearm.

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Of course, the reason the width is easy to keep down in this model is that it forgoes the traditional Bond Arms chambering of .45 Colt and is instead chambered for the ubiquitous 9x19mm cartridge.

As with all Bond Arms derringers, the workmanship is fantastic. The machining is clean, everything fits together just so, and the controls are all crisp and positive.

The downside, of course, is that it’s still a derringer. While they have their aficionados, it’s hard to ignore the fact that even in slimline form, these are the size of the typical pocket .380, which holds three times the ammunition and does not need to be manually cocked for each shot.

The other new offering for this year is the BullPup XL, a longer-barreled version of the tiny BullPup (nee Boberg R9).

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Otherwise identical to the base model BullPup, that funky design that snatches the cartridges rearward out of the magazine before stuffing them into the breech, the XL’s longer barrel allows it to have a stubby accessory rail that should fit subcompact weapon-mounted lights.

Actual shipping date for the XL variant hadn’t been finalized at the time of this writing, but they swore up and down it would be happening this year, hopefully by summer.


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