My name is Johnny Hotshot and after people see my show, they don't ask why. I am a professional entertainer who travels the World performing a one man Wild West Show of trick and fancy gun handling, trick shooting and fast draw exhibitions. I am the SASS/WWPAS 2010 World Champion Fancy Gun Handler and I do literally hundreds of shows each year.
Anybody who does shows for a living can tell you that the tools used in performing get a workout far above the normal operating parameters they are designed for. Extreme conditions under pressure and long hours of use with little or no time for maintenance are hard on any equipment and these conditions can go on for weeks or even months at a time. For me, the guns I use are simply the most important pieces of equipment in my work. Performing in front of a live audience there are no second chances. No double takes. After performing about 50 tricks of spinning, flipping and twirling and running thru a fast draw demo and 5 or 6 other trick shots and I'm drawing a bead on my last target for an over the shoulder mirror shot behind me as I build up the dramatic tension, I simply NEED the pistol to work. Every time. Five shows a day, weeks on end. There is no room for a cylinder that doesn't lock up or a light hammer spring not setting off the primer. And I'll be the 1st to admit it. I'm rough on guns. I power thru my fast draw with little finesse. I use way too much hammer pull on just about every fast shot I do and I don't clean and lubricate them as much as I should. If you are a competitive shooter you wouldn't want me using your guns in my work.
In about 25 years of performing with guns I have used many different makes and models. But for years now I have used F.LLI Pietta made guns exclusively. No matter what brand they come under, they are the most widely used guns by professionals and competitors for a reason. Reliability. Pietta approached me about a year and a half ago after seeing my show, offering me the use of the new model of 1873 SA he was producing. I was using a couple Uberti's (another Pietta make) at the time and very happy with them. Pietta's talk about new metallurgy techniques making springs stronger and the Pietta care and dedication to precision and authenticity were impressive but I had one requirement. If Pietta was going to sponsor me with a couple of pistols for my show then I wanted guns that anybody could buy. Basically right out of the box, not custom made guns he did only for me. Pietta agreed giving me a pair of nickel plated 4 3/4 inch single actions in .45 LC with a factory action job that I was surprised to find was on par with action jobs I've paid top dollar for on other pistols. Right out of the box these beautiful pieces were smooth as butter and locked up tight, every time. Over the last year I have put them thru the ringer starting out by winning the SASS/WWPAS World Championship of fancy gun handling with them at the end of 2009 in Las Vegas. At the time of this writing I am getting ready to defend my title with these same guns at the 2010 Championship competition and I haven't even changed a part or made an adjustment to them the whole time. It has been a busy year for me and my team of Pietta's and they have not let me down. They've been tossed in the dirt and sand more times than I'll admit. Been rained on at shows for days on end and even hit the concrete a few times (I NEVER drop 'um, but every once in a while, when I'm twirling too fast for 'um they might fall) and I haven't even fully striped um down for an overhaul. The white poly grips still look great, which is remarkable because most poly grips simply explode into pieces when meeting the concrete like these have, but these have only racked up a few dings. I continue to be fully impressed with them and so is everybody I show them to. Whether they are a professional shooter, competitor, performer or part time enthusiast, they are always blown away by the smoothness of the factory action job and overall tightness of these pieces.
I've gone thru many a gun in my time but when you catch my show I'll be using these same two Pietta SA's. As the Official product tester for F.LLI Pietta, I can tell you. If you need reliability and authenticity, the new generation of Pietta pistols is the only equipment I trust my audiences to.
If you would like to learn more about Johnny and The Hotshot Gunslinger Show, go to www.hotshotgunslinger.com.